How do you learn a language? Do you buy a book? Do you need to find native speakers? Or do you need to travel to another country? All of these are viable options, but some are very expensive, and require a lot of work that may be unnecessary.
It’s incredible all of the websites that have been created with the sole purpose of teaching languages to others. A website that I utilize is called Duo Lingo. It offers a number of languages, with focuses in the romantic languages (no, not like sparkling vampire romance, but languages derived from Latin, such as Spanish, French, and Italian.) It is a free service and offers a simple means of getting the basics of language without the hefty cost of Rosetta Stone.
Then you have other websites that can lead you to more language learning opportunities. Openculture and the Khan Academy would be other examples. This kind of exposure to other languages would have, once upon a time, been very difficult to encounter. Now it’s available and free for anyone with access to the internet.
If all goes well, you may be able to sing along to this song. Good luck, explorer.
Since working with a group of middle schoolers I’ve thought more and more about the concept of education and the role of the teacher. A few times I lectured to the kids on screenwriting and poetry. A few times I did group activities where we worked together to create a character, story, or plot.
Reflecting on my education, I realize that a lot of it was centered around these two methods. In retrospect there were some great lectures and some poor. But the idea of lecturing just doesn’t seem satisfying. I recall my time in middle school where I would listen and soak everything in, while on other days my mind would drift off. On these days, the teach seemed more of a recording that could be listened to or not, depending on my mood.
With the kids, I ran through a bit of script with them and they all claimed to understand it, but afterwards were generally unresponsive. Then when they split into groups the classroom came alive and were more productive than ever. Perhaps I helped them understand it better, or perhaps I bored them out of their minds.
With all of these in mind, I looked further and found this video. So now I’m to seek a better understand of how people learn, and importantly how they learn effectively.