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Did You Know: Language Learning Resources

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The world is opening up again, and many of us are thinking about taking our next big trip. Where to?  Spain? Korea? Vietnam? Wherever you go, studying a language can make your fabulous trip even more fabulous.

No travel plans, you say?  Language study can still widen and enrich your world. According to Rosetta Stone, learning a new language can help you preserve and improve your brain function, memory, and problem solving skills. You might even be able to connect with individuals in your community who speak the language.  Plus, learning a language can be just plain FUN.

Ready to explore a new language? Read on to learn about how the Library can help!

Library users have access to a wide range of research and learning databases through the library’s website, including two language learning resources: Rocket Languages and Rosetta Stone.

Rocket Languages

Between the two programs, Rocket Languages is the closest to a traditional classroom learning experience.  Rocket Languages uses the power of personality and relationship to teach you your target language.  The introductory lesson introduces you to your teachers--one teacher who was born into that language group, and an American with extensive experience with the culture and the language of the country.

The first teacher introduces themselves with a short speech that lets you hear the unique sounds, rhythms, and patterns of that language.  The American speaker talks about their background and what brought them to study that language.  Both teachers chat about what learning and teaching the language is like, and what you can expect to learn.  While many language learning programs emphasize the learner to computer interaction, Rocket Languages offers a more personalized experience with the presence of teacher support.

With your library card, you can access Level 1, which includes seven modules divided into different  lessons.  Each lesson provides learners with the opportunity to practice listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Highlights include an interactive audio lesson that features a transcript that scrolls up the page as you listen, the Hear it! Say it! feature, which lets you listen and repeat words and phrases, and a recording option, which allows you to record and listen to yourself speak. At the end of each lesson there is a Quiz to wrap up the module.

Rocket also offers Mandarin Chinese, Korean, and Hindi!

Rosetta Stone

You will find that Rosetta Stone is quite different from Rocket Languages.  Whereas Rocket uses more of a classroom simulation approach, Rosetta Stone presents the language in a series of modular bits and pieces. In each lesson, flashcards pop up on the screen, presenting a word and a picture.  After a review, there is a word matching test at the end of the lesson.

Like Rocket Languages, Rosetta Stone has lots of special features.  There is an “On Demand” section where you can join conversational sessions with live teachers.  These sessions have topical themes, such as “First Date,” “Birthday Celebration,” and even “Chocolate.”  There is an Audio Companion for each unit where you can get extra practice by listening to native speakers.

Rosetta Stone does have a wider variety of languages to choose from including Tagalog, Vietnamese, and Urdu!

In addition to offering databases, the library also has programs that encourage language learning. Attend ESL Conversation Café for an opportunity to practice your English or converse with English learners. Or, read and discuss books in español at our Discusión de Libros program. Visit our online calendar to learn more!

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