Monday, October 22, 2018

Linguacious for Spanish Learners

Linguacious for Spanish Learners

This is a sponsored post in collaboration with Linguacious and MommyMaestra. All opinions are my own. 

Most good Spanish learning curricula contain a lot of hands-on learning. If you flip through almost any program lesson plan and you'll see arts, crafts, music, TPR...and games. Especially games. That's because learning happens faster and easier when we are having fun. Teachers have used games like hopscotch, dominos, Uno, Go Fish, and many, many others to teach children important concepts for decades.

In the Internet TESL Journal, there's an article by Chen, I-Jung, in which the author states that games are beneficial in language learning because "games...
  • are learner-centered.
  • promote communicative competence.
  • create a meaningful context for language use.
  • increase learning motivation.
  • reduce learning anxiety.
  • integrate various linguistic skills.
  • encourage the creative and spontaneous use of language.
  • construct a cooperative learning environment.
  • foster participatory attitudes of the students."

If your child is learning Spanish at home or in the classroom, there's no reason why you can't use games outside of their curriculum to supplement their language learning. That's why I love it when I learn about products independent of a curriculum that may be used to boost your child's language learning skills. 

Linguacious for Spanish Learners

So let me introduce you to Linguacious, a family-owned language learning company started by a language learning expert raising his son to be trilingual. The dad is Brazilian, the mom is Ukrainian, and their son is being raised speaking Portuguese, Russian, and English through the OPOL (One Parent One Language) approach. I was delighted to be contacted by this education company and asked to share their products. 

This set of game-based vocabulary flashcards is unlike any flashcard set you've ever seen before. To use the cards, it is best if you download the Linguacious app. It's basically a QR code reader, but one developed by Linguacious specifically for use with Linguacious products. The result is that it scans the Linguacious QR codes much faster than other QR readers, has no ads whatsoever, and is very easy for even small kids to use; simply point at the QR code and it pronounces the word. It also has a flashlight feature, which makes it possible for kids to scan the cards even in the dark!

You'll need it to work with the cards. On one side you'll find real-world images and a QR code (no written words), and on the other side, you'll see the written word and another QR code (no images). When you scan the code, you'll hear the word pronounced in the target language. 

Linguacious for Spanish Learners

It's pretty amazing because you can use each card to boost ALL FOUR language skills: reading, writing, listening, and speaking. This is a precious tool for any language learner or educator.

And you know what this audio feature means, right? That's correct! Parents, you don't have to be fluent in the target language to play games with your child! Woohoo! (But watch out because if you mispronounce the word, your child is going to notice anyway!)

The other cool thing is that these flashcards can be used by one child (solitaire) or as a group (class) activity. The Linguacious website has a page dedicated to all the different games you can play with their deck of cards. (But I bet your children or students can come up with a few more!)

I believe I counted 51 languages in which the cards are available. Wow. That's some serious language learning going on. And the cards are available in several themes, such as...
  1. Animals
  2. Around the Home
  3. Food & Drinks
  4. and Verbs

The really fantastic part is that these cards may be used with children of ANY age. Are you working on raising a bilingual toddler? Boost his vocabulary with the Pointing Fingers game. Got a middle schooler learning Spanish? Help him with his pronunciation with the Word Whiz game. Is your high schooler taking Spanish for the first time? Help her practice her conversational Spanish by playing Vocabulary Train! Seriously, who would have guessed you could play so many games with a simple deck of flashcards? 

AND I was impressed to discover that all Linguacious® products come with a complimentary 2-year technical audio warranty!

In addition to the flashcards, Linguacious also has poster sets in a similar format using the QR reader app. Their Spanish poster, as you can see above, follows the Gomez & Gomez dual language education model, with the Spanish words colored in red and the English translation colored in blue. What is great is that the English translations are in a much smaller font size than the Spanish words, so that students do not use the English translation as a crutch, but only to check the meaning. The images are quite self-explanatory and clear on their own, but the small English translation may appeal to certain schools and programs. I think this would be a great addition to the Spanish-learning classroom and could be used as a language center activity while the cards could be used as a group-learning game to reinforce vocabulary. 

To order your own set of Linguacious cards or posters, you can visit their site or purchase directly from Amazon (aff link). 


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