Top 5 Free Online Language Programs

You have it on your calendar that you have to make that business overseas trip to Japan in a few weeks, and, gasp, you don’t know have enough skills to carry a conversation in Japanese. You don’t have time to enroll in a local class, and you don’t want to put down $500 for the latest version of Rosetta Stone. What can you do? Why not take a class online? Better yet, why not take advantage of a FREE class online.

When approaching free online courses, there are tons of options from learning about upgrading your software skills to seeing how to throw better at darts. With the internet becoming more easily accessible globally and the thirst for knowledge is in abundance, it makes sense that learning a foreign language can be as easy as a click away.

However, there are some things you want to keep in mind when approaching free online learning in general:

They don’t give you credit for learning. Though there are some colleges offering openware classes online from calculus to biology, it is not all for credit. So, don’t be anticipating college or continuing education credits to be put on your resume.

Unless you want to take a class with a friend, it can be a lonely experience learning by yourself. Not all programs provide assistance from a teacher or a message board with other students.

Self-discipline is key in making your experience of learning successful. You will have to be motivated and a great time-manager to embark in any self-study endeavor.

Because there is such a great quantity of Free Online Learning, sources, here is a list of top 5 free online courses on foreign languages which can help you in your learning.

1. Openware – as briefly mentioned above, this is a system that is free through certain universities. You can get access to syllabi from past years classes, and give you a rigorous format for learning (not for college credit or any access to the professors, of course). Keep in mind, when they publish their syllabus from their 2006 class in French 101, and ask you to participate, it is only for that 2006 class to do so. You will have to purchase books, just like any college student would. Though the classes would be free and away from campus, you feel like you are learning from the best professors in the country. MIT is leading for this type of education. Get a sampling of courses on their website.

2. About.com -known more for its general online sourcing, About.com has its own language university. They have a team of teachers who have developed pre-made lessons that can be forwarded to your email each week. Your time in learning would be motivated by deadlines with assignments and quizzes. You can spend an average of 2 to 3 hours a week on a lesson. A typical beginner’s course for a language is about 20 weeks, so you can anticipate completing a course in 5 to 6 months.

3. Youtube.com – this video website is a great source for learning another language. You can simply type in your language of choice and Voila! A listing of courses is immediately available for show. Though these are from various sources, the experience of finding all the videos could be choppy, meaning that all videos or modules for the lessons may not be there for viewing. There are some videos you would need a subscription, which would be of a better quality, because they are more systematic. You can always check it out to see if all the videos are downloaded by the account member.

4. Byki.com – this website is a free way to download flash cards to study word phrases and have it spoken. You also have choices from languages that are not commonly taught like Haitian Creole and Icelandic. You can choose which modules fit your needs, and in what you want to learn. This system is ideal for travelers or anyone wanting to supplement their continuing language education.

5. Word2word.com – A fantastic online board compiling just about all available information out there in online foreign language learning. There are many language courses to choose from. By clicking the free online language courses, you would be taken to 119 choices, including Native American languages. If you want to learn Japanese, click on Japanese and there are 10 free online courses available from sites for travelers or for those who want weekly lessons. Again, each course is going to be different in format, so choose what would work best for you.

As we all know, learning more languages in today’s world is more imperative than ever. Though traditional ways of learning languages is out there, there is also a more economical way to learn. Why NOT take a free online language course?

The Future of Free Online Learning

E-learning has been around since 1999, when the phrase was coined at a seminar in Los Angeles. Since then the online learning industry has boomed, with the influx of online courses, video tutorials and online degrees. Though this industry is thriving, it is still within its infancy with room for innovation and new ways of connecting people through community education.

Currently there are a handful of companies facilitating this ever-growing industry and most provide courses where participants download and complete course material provided by a tutor. Others provide video tutorials with limited access to the tutor and so answers are usually responded to in a day or two. A small majority offer very interactive lessons with a real person in real-time. In saying that, there are many technologies that allow for real-time teaching, with interactive capabilities such as screen sharing, screen control, watch and listen to YouTube videos together and listen to audio direct from each others computer.

Those in regions that lack resources for education are usually the top of the list of users for online education. Particularly in the west we are more used to free education on our doorstep and simply this is not the case in many countries, especially third world countries. Our available education spoils us and more often we forget how much education we have on offer. But in third world countries for example, the access to education is scarce or there is a pure unknowing of where to look for such information. This deficiency limits us as a society and thus funnels students into a preordained career. We have now more than ever had attention disorders throughout our schools, with many students citing their simple disinterest.

Online education allows room for choice, so that a student can give 100% attention to their passion. Adding variety to teaching styles with the use of interactive tools, students can be consistently engaged, without distractions. Learning from an active member within the industry gives real practical advice to be used in an actual situation.

Most who teach online are of degree standard, being capable of guiding on the national curriculum and many offer free introduction lessons, so you can hop skip and jump until you find the right tutor for you. The convenience of online learning has to be one on top of the list, obviously there is no travel costs incurred and you learn at your own time, at your own pace with real-time responses, so if you have a question, just ask and it will be answered.

One obvious hurdle with online learning is not having the tutor physically there but the key is in the name, online learning, is not a substitute for conventional education but it is definitely something to consider as extracurricular.

As with most technology online learning is prone to technical gremlins and so it is best to have adequate equipment.

There is much you can do to improve the quality of the audio and video. By attaching a quality microphone and webcam, you can significantly improve the quality.

To Improve Your Video Lessons.

  • Use a high quality external microphone.
  • A high quality external web camera.
  • Good quality headphones.
  • A large computer monitor.
  • A wired connection to the Internet (wireless connections can be unreliable).
  • An Internet connection of DSL speeds (768kbps UPLOAD connection) or better (no dial-up connections).

The most beautiful aspect of online learning has to be the cost, with some online courses you fork out large amounts to prepay a course from 3 – 6 months or more. https://www.uteach-me.com offers online pay as you go lessons.

Funny Game – The Perfect Game For Families, Groups, & Children

Have you ever been to a party, family get together, or just a fun date/game night with friends and you played one of those games that was just boring (and somewhat awkward cause it was so silly and childish)? I think we all have. Have you ever gone online to look for a real fun and funny game for that next game night, but all you could find were silly juvenile type games? Been there – done that!

I wanted to provide one of the many games that I have played that is hilarious and that everyone will find funny and enjoy. It is an extremely fun game, and perfect for that next game night, date night, family reunion, family game night, or get-together with neighbors or friends. Plus, if you are going to play a game that is funny and embarrasses you – you might as well have everyone be embarrassed right!

RECKLESS DRESS UP

# of Players: 6 or more

Objects Needed: Articles of clothing: shirt, pants, socks, gloves, hat, shoes, coat, & blindfold.

Some games are competitive and require strategy, while others are meant to laugh and just have fun… this is one of them! Divide those playing into 2 teams, and in preparation, gather these items for each team: a pair of mis-matched gloves, blindfold, funny hat, shirt, large coat, baggy pants, socks, and shoes. (It is of course best if the clothing is old or could possibly get stretched out, and each team needs their own set of clothes).

Place each team’s clothes in their own separate piles at one end of the room. At “go,” one person from each team will race to their own team’s pile, place the blindfold on, put on the two gloves first, and then put on every other clothing article. Once a player has put on every article of clothing, they will take the blindfold off, quickly take all the clothes off, and go and tag the next person on their team (if the weather permits, play this game outside where there is more room). In relay race style, the next person will then have to come to the pile and do the same thing. The first team to get each teammate there to the pile, put on / take off the clothes, and back to the starting line is the winner!

To add a fun twist, go outside and try a different variation of this game. As in the description above, each team will have their own pile of clothes. A starting line will be formed and each team’s pile of clothes will be by them at the starting line. At ‘go’ – the first teammate will race to put on the clothes. Once all the items are on, they will have to run down, touch the middle line 30 feet away and come back and tag their next teammate. Once the next person has been tagged, the first person will quickly take the clothes off and the next person will start putting them on. The 2nd person can not start running until all the clothes are on. This repeats until one team has got all their players to the middle line and back – they are the winner!