Rosetta Stone is OK, but one thing I've noticed is it doesn't force you to express your own ideas and thoughts, nor is there a constant review of social graces as you would receive from an immersion study. I'd recommend it as a supplement to another course of study. And please note - Rosetta Stone is discontinuing all library access as of August 31, 2008 (http://www.kcls.org/databases/a_z.cfm#R).
Ta-ta for now!
I'd like to know more about Running Start. I've got 4 children (2 will be in high school) that I'm homeschooling. Which foreign language programs would be considered at a high school level? (Spanish)
yep. Heard that about Rosetta Stone being unavailable. You can try livemocha.com which is still free.
We're enjoying Powerglide on-line, but not necessarily the price!
I got your questions while I was on vacation, so I haven't been able to answer until now. I will blog post on your two questions this week.
We tried Rosetta Stone this year. Maybe I didn't know how to use it fully but my 8 and 12 year olds had a lot of trouble with it. My 14 year old did better but did not finish it. The main trouble was that it expected you to spell the words it said without giving you any spelling or grammar advice. Is Power Glide for all grades?
I'm a fluent speaker of 3 foreign languages and one strategy that I've used effectively is having friends whom thier primary language is the foreign language that I'm learning. They help me quickly master the most common terms and terminologies used in their every-day speaking.
One strategy with Rosetta Stone that works well is to do the lesson in English first. Yes, this means buying Rosetta Stone English - sorry! The days of free access through the library are just about at an end. Also, we skipped the speaking part - a native French speaker from France said Rosetta Stone's voice recognition software didn't even like *her* pronunciation!
My daughter started at about age 8 and continued for almost 3 years, and here's the strategy we used with the more advanced lessons:
1) Do the lesson in English first, so you can see what they're trying to teach you.
2) Do the lesson in French. If you get a 90 percent or better, you move on to the next lesson the next day.
3) If you get lower than 90 percent, repeat steps 1 and 2 the next day.
Repeat as necessary.
As I've said before, and as Lee has also commented, Rosetta Stone is *no* substitute for live interaction with a real human being!
Hope this helps!
Rosetta isn't perfect any more than any other curriculum. It probably depends on learning styles more than anything. But it IS possible to learn a foreign language at home using only a curriculum book and no translator. I was able to give my kids 3 years of Latin and 3 years of French, even though I don't know Latin and only had one year of French in Junior High. They had enough to go on to college languages and get a 4.0 in college French and college Latin. Don't be afraid of foreign language! You can do it whether you know the language or not!