May 2012 Newsletter
The great advantage of an online language program such as GamesforLanguage.com, as compared to language textbooks or CDs, is our ability to immediately and constantly improve our program. Early users will have noticed a number of changes over the last few months:
We've moved "The Story": In the easy first Scene - where the flight attendant asks our "hero" what he would like to drink - the dialog of "The Story" appears right at the beginning. However, for some users, listening to “The Story” without knowing the vocabulary, was frustrating. It therefore now follows the vocabulary games for the next 17 Scenes. Users will have acquired a vocabulary of around 350 words by the end of Level 3 (after 18 Scenes), and will now be able to guess the meaning of the next dialog. "The Story" will therefore appear again at the beginning of each Scene with Level 4.
Verb Picks: Following the suggestion of some users, we've added a simple conjugation game.
We've expanded the Memory Game: The initial Memory game now includes all new vocabulary (not just 8 key items). We were at first reluctant to overload the learner, but as we ourselves learned Spanish (see this blog and others that follow), we felt that each and every new word should be practiced.
We've added Word Hero: This recall game practices the vocabulary of the previous Scene.
We've added Recall and Record: In this game, the user recalls the vocabulary of a Scene of one (1) Level (i.e. 6 Scenes) earlier, and practices their pronunciation again in phrases and sentences.
Changes in the works
Downloadable grammar sheets: Not all users are interested in more detailed grammar instructions relating to the phrases and sentences of "The Story." However, for those who do, we're planning to offer downloadable, targeted "grammar sheets."
Personalized vocabulary list/game: We're working on a game that will allow users to create (then add/delete) and practice a personal vocabulary list.
Story audios: We'll shortly have mp3 audios of all scenes available for download. This way users can also listen to "The Story" on the road.
We’ve changed our mind!
Although apps have been the hot item for a while now and we already had a prototype in the works, we've changed our mind. We were growing weary of the many issues with apps, including having to wait 14 days for Apple to approve any changes and needing separate applications for Apple and Android.
We are working on a “responsive” website that tailors its display for optimal viewing on your device, whether mobile or desktop. “Responsive” design is quite new, but we are fortunate enough to have a “crack” developer on our team – our son Pascal – who just implemented such a “responsive” website for another start-up, www.Fundraise.com. Look for a new design and website for gamesforlanguage.com, which will work on all devices, in the coming months!
Posted by XRumerTest at 08:20AM on February 01 2013
Hello. And Bye.
Posted by Ulrike Editor at 09:04PM on June 15 2012
Thank you Danny, we are back now after 7 weeks in Spain (four of those in Barcelona). We did have a Lonely Planet guide and enjoyed learning some of the Catalan phrases as well. We ended up meeting people – people of Barcelona are very friendly and open – and we ended up learning a lot and beginning to have some real conversations in Spanish.
Posted by Rajababu at 03:10PM on June 10 2012
How long are you staying?I selcet Lonely Planet guidebooks because they put the language basics in the back. Go by a white people bookstore and see what they have. I found a Speaking Thai book written in English that helped me get a few basics down, but if you only have a few weeks, the best you can reasonably hope for is to master enough pleasantries such that it appears that you are trying to do Chinese before asking them to do English.Good luck!-danny
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