Online Language Immersion and Online Language Exchange from and for Real Life.
It is well known that the best way of learning a language is to immerse yourself into the culture and really understand first hand what you hear and read. But, it can be costly and difficult to take time away from other life commitments to do this. As an alternative there are now many different language tools and resources online, and Real Life Language Learning is one resource that could be beneficial for individuals looking to improve and experience language learning online.
Real Life Language Learning began as a content management system that Nina Klimas set up from years of teaching languages. She collected many years worth of interviews, realia, lessons and photos and the space morphed into a place where teachers and learners connect via web chat, audio, forums, video, e-mail, white board and write board.
“The work I did during my studies for my MA in the Teaching of Languages helped validate what that first year of creating materials taught me- relevant immersion in real language is how we learn. My ultimate vision is for Real Life Language to serve as a space where language teachers and learners can plug in their device, and download real, relevant language (as they can now), but select from a much larger range of languages and linguistic tasks. The ultimate goal is to offer an ever-expanding selection of personalized, on-demand language learning materials without a huge price tag.”
The site contains resources for learning Spanish, Thai, Cantonese, Brazilian Portugese, French, Italian, Korean, Mandarin Chinese and Japanese. Learners can record right from the site, and teachers and native speakers can record downloadable MP3s for their students or other teachers. Learners can also record words and phrases that they need to learn. They can add these to the site, download and take language learning on the go.
Users can choose Basic or Premium membership which entitles them to a wide range of useful language learning features such as:
- Language courses
- Share photos from around the world.
- Read the language learning and travel blogs.
- Participate in the language wikis.
- News Articles in English
- Connecting native speakers and language learners
- Discussion Forums
- Audio, whiteboard, web, mail and video chat for Premium members.
- Save your web chat language exchange sessions to review later.
- File sharing.
- Teacher’s corner- share lessons and resources. Connect with other classes. Invite native speakers to do a virtual presentation in your class via video.
- Record MP3 files right to your computer via the site. Share in posts, create practice MP3s for yourself or with other users via the file sharing feature.
- Menu for Language Exchange- a list of topics organized by proficiency to help with conversation exchange.
- 1 to 1 Teaching Students and teachers can connect through the Classifieds section. Audio, mail, video and whiteboard chat right through the site. Web sessions can be saved and downloaded.
Check out the site, and be part of a community of language learners online.