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28 May 2006

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Jamie

I wanted to teach Spanish without knowing it myself (well, I know a smidge of Spanish -- never took it but have tried to pick up bits and pieces). It didn't work terribly well for us, and we've moved on to languages that I know better: Latin and German. I think the way kids absorb language is by hearing it often -- things like, "Pass the salt" and, "Was that a delicious booger you just ate?" (I'm sure your kids would never eat their boogers so you would need different practice sentences, of course.) My boys were *not* enthusiastic about learning vocab without a broader context, and I didn't have the skills to provide that context for Spanish. Let us know what you decide and how it goes.

Angela C.

Something else you might want to consider is what kind of accent your children will have if you plan on teaching them Spanish. Do you want them to sound like they're from Spain or Latin America?

I took two years of French in college from a professor who was originally from northern Italy. While on trips to France, her graduate students were asked who taught them French because they had Italian accents. (Just thinking of that story makes me smile.)

Louise

OK, I will plug for the Rosetta Stone computer program. They offer Latin American Spanish or uh, Spanish Spanish!!

You can try their demo CD-rom which gives a smattering of a variety of their languages.

Really, its very good. I think it was about $300 US for the Two Levels. You can buy one level for less.

Cost-wise its pretty comparable with what you'd pay for a course for one person, but in this case you get to offer it to the whole family.

My kids love it.

Kelly

Power Glide is also popular among homeschoolers.

bearing

Louise - I am familiar with Rosetta Stone, as we were able for a while to access it online through the local public library. I noticed the $300 homeschool kit --- can you tell me about the materials that come with it, the text and worksheets? I was pretty impressed with the Rosetta Stone technique. I think the money'll be better spent after my oldest can read and write somewhat fluently (in English), so that he can use the text features.

As for context, I agree. I'm hoping that we can create some by drawing on the community we live in (heavily Hispanic) and maybe through literature and movies in Spanish.

Louise

I think the Latin American Spanish program has some workbooks with it. The Spain version doesn't though.

They are just supplements really; the student learns to read and write the language on the computer.

It would be possible to use the program with a non-reading child, but they will probably get more out of it if they can read and write at least a bit.

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