Summer means vacations and new adventures! Many of you use this time to travel abroad and discover the wonders of the world. Planning on taking a great trip to Europe while the kids are out of school? I found some great links to web sites where you can learn foreign languages for free! Traveling to Cancun for an exotic beach trip? Check out these web sites where you can brush up on your old high school Spanish. Half of the fun of traveling in a foreign country is meeting the people, learning their culture, and trying to communicate with them. Me? I'm working on Chinese right now!
http://www.verbalearn.com/ – VerbaLearn is an excellent vocabulary tool for English language learners. It can be customized so that students can practice the words they need to practice and skip the ones they are already familiar with.
http://www.poplin.com/ – Popling is a unique way to learn a language without intense study. This free web app sends random questions and flashcards to your computer screen so that you can learn new vocab words while you work on other things.
http://www.foreignlanguageflashcards.com/ – This site provides free picture flashcards for visual learners who are trying to master a foreign language. Other resources include free foreign language learning guides, downloads, and a flashcard maker.
http://www.quizlet.com/ – Quizlet can be used to create and share flashcards. It is a wonderful tool for learning new vocabulary words.
http://www.lingolook.com/ – Lingolook is a foreign language phrasebook application that works with iPhone. The app isn’t free, but it is cheap. For less than $5, students can download it and learn all of the most important phrases used while traveling.
http://www.byki.com/ – This personalized language learning system can be downloaded for free. It is available in 70 different languages and includes tools to help people permanently memorize vocabulary words and phrases.
http://www.edufire.com/ – eduFire provides a wide range of video flashcards for foreign language learners. Cards are rated for difficulty and content so that students and teachers can quickly find what they are looking for.
http://www.livemocha.com/ – Livemocha offers the opportunity for learners to study and practice a language at their own pace. The site can also be used to connect with foreign language learners around the world.
http://www.myhappyplanet.com/ – This social language learning site is perfect for students who want to meet new friends and practice a foreign language with native speakers. MyHappyPlanet also provides free videos from fluent speakers and member-created language lessons.
http://www.italki.com/ – This free foreign language site can be used to find a language teacher or practice online with a language partner. italki also offers free language questions and the ability to ask questions about something you don’t understand.
http://www.voxswap.com/ – VoxSwap is a social network for learning languages. The site introduces visitors to new people and language learners around the world.
http://www.lingopass.com/ – LingoPass is a unique site for language learners. Every time users share their language, they receive a free, one-week membership that can be used to attend any of LingoPass’ online language lessons.
http://www.lingvosoftonline.com/ – This site offers a number of free online language tools for learners, including a free online phrasebook, free flashcards, and free online dictionaries.
http://www.mindtools.com/ – MindTools provides an excellent guide to learning foreign languages. The guide includes information about different systems and effective mnemonics.
http://www.babelfish.com/ – This free online translator from Yahoo! can quickly translate text from one language into another.
Buena suerte! Adios!
Sister Thrifty (Trina Boice)