Me gusta espanol! Of course, you knew that already right? I want our kids to learn as much Spanish as they can. We desire for our 6 year old who was adopted from Guatemala to be bilingual. Great in theory; harder when the teacher is not bilingual. What I have found in 15 years of homeschooling my kids is that I can teach them a lot of Spanish vocabulary. Teaching them to converse in Spanish is a whole different ball game.
And THAT is why I love See It and Say It Flip Flop Spanish from Flip Flop Learning. It teaches BOTH vocabulary and speaking. And it has been a HUGE hit in our house. From the moment I received Flip Flop Spanish in the mail I was impressed. Packaged neatly and with clear instructions on how to get started, this 45 lesson, two year Spanish program is perfect for all ages. In this little box came the teacher's manual, hole punched and ready to put into a three ring binder of your choice. There is even a spine graphic to use for the binder! Also, included is a set of 4 CDs, three vocabulary flashcards, and a whiteboard paddle and marker.
One of the key components of Flip Flop Spanish is the putting together of sentences. With each set of noun vocabulary cards that Senora Gose teaches, she also teaches a few verbs to go along with them. Then she says a sentence using those words and has the student make the sentences with the cards they have in front of them. (She even includes baseball card holder sleeves to help hold the cards.) Then in parts of the lessons your child is encouraged to make up their own sentences. She adds little words like y (and), con (with) and pero (but) to help make the sentence formation a little easier.
Once your child has mastered that week's flashcards you are ready to go on to the next lesson. Simple as that! Each lesson is clearly marked in the upper corner with a number so they are easy to find in a hurry. The CDs are in tracks as well so finding your place is quick and easy. Each lesson references which track and which cards will be used eliminating any guess work.
So how did we use it and what did we think?
Since we are all trying to learn more Spanish I decided to use this program with both of my boys, ages 11 and 6. Each morning, we would meet in my oldest son's room and go through the day's lesson together. Each day we worked for about 30 minutes. We did decide to move at a quicker pace, as our vocabulary knowledge is pretty strong. The first few weeks we only spent two days on a lessons and therefore did two lessons a week at first. Once we began to run into more difficult words, we slowed back down to the recommended three days per lesson.
We found that doing the lessons together was more fun than individually, though I have no doubt one child would succeed as well. For my boys, a little friendly competition was a good motivator. They enjoyed seeing who could find the words faster and kept a talley to get a winner each time. We also really enjoyed using the whiteboard paddle for games like speed rounds and pictionary. Yes. some of us are better artists than others, but oh well. It was still fun and really did help strengthen our vocabulary. The other part my boys enjoyed was the sentence building, especially silly sentences. They would put together the longest and silliest sentences they could possibly come up with. I told them that was fine, as long as they could then READ them out loud to the rest of us. I will save you from showing you the silliest! This is also the day we would add any activities she recommended as "extra fun".
One of the many strengths of the program I found was that is is truly multi leveled. Throughout the lessons Senora Gose gives more in depth activities for older and more advanced students like actually writing down the vocabulary and sentences. You can also move through the lessons faster with more advanced students if needed. By taking the level up a little, you can easily teach all ages at the same time...a huge advantage when a family is trying to learn together. I also found that making the sentences and having to read them aloud, as well as simply repeating the words Señora Gose said not only helped in the correct pronunciation of words, but increased our confidence in speaking. For someone who has traveled to a Spanish speaking country, I can tell you that practice in speaking is the one thing you can do to help you increase your confidence. Once your confidence is better, you will not be so hesitant to try out your new speaking skills. Learning from a native is beneficial no matter how you look at it!
Whether you choose to use Flip Flop Spanish as a stand alone program, or one to supplement one you are currently using, I think that you will be blessed exponentially by using it. And be one step closer to being bilingual. Me gusta!
See It and Say It Flip Flop Spanish can be purchased as a set for $99.95. Flip Flop Learning also offers workbooks for additional practice as well as readers for various levels.