Archive for the ‘foreign language’ category

Step-by-Step French Tutorial

June 12th, 2021

The French Tutorial


Grades 6 and up, with parental supervision

Learn the French language including grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation.

Just like a beginning French language textbook, the student is introduced to pronouns, the difference between masculine and feminine objects, verb tenses, vocabulary, building sentences, etc. You will learn to count in French, and say greetings suitable for every holiday at this site too! There is a little speaker button that you can click on at any time during the tutorial that allows you to hear the words pronounced correctly.

This website helps students build a good foundation in learning French.

Online Language Courses from the Peace Corps

May 1st, 2021

Live Lingua: Free Peace Corps Language Courses


Grades 6-12, with parental supervision

This page at the commercial website, Live Lingua, serves as a repository for the language materials from the U.S. Peace Corps.

Visitors will find over 100 different languages to choose from including many languages non-traditionally studied in schools. Each language provides a downloadable PDF workbook and some also include audio lessons. While the traditional languages of Spanish, French, Arabic, Chinese, Russian, and more are available, some of the lesser learned languages that include audios are:

  • Bengali, an eastern Indo-Aryan language
  • Chewa, also known as Nyanja, the Bantu language family
  • Ewe, a Niger-Congo language spoken in southeastern Ghana and southern Togo
  • Hausa, the Chadic language
  • Jahanka, a Manding language of Guinea
  • Jola (Diola), a dialect spoken in Senegal, The Gambia, and Guinea Bissau
  • Krio, the de facto national language spoken throughout the West African nation of Sierra Leone
  • Luganda, the major language of Uganda
  • Marshallese, a Malayo-Polynesian language spoken in the Marshall Islands
  • Setswana, a Bantu language belonging to the Niger-Congo language family
  • Turkmen, the national language of Turkmenistan
  • Zarma, one of the Songhai languages

Even if you may not be interested in learning some of the lesser-studied languages, this website could provide an interesting addition to your geography studies.

Learn Basic Mandarin Chinese

April 10th, 2021

Free Chinese Lessons 


All grades, children with parental supervision


This site includes basic lessons that focus on the proper pronunciation of spoken Mandarin.

It also includes the basics for learning Chinese writing which is non-alphabetic and non-phonetic. Learn the meaning of Chinese characters. This site seems to be designed with older students and adults in mind. However, even young children – with parental guidance – could listen to some of the lessons and stories and learn Chinese words and phrases. Non-readers will need assistance.

Be sure to check out the Chinese for Children page for video tutorials presented by a nine-year-old.

Tools to Build Proficiency in Spanish

February 27th, 2021

The University of Texas at Austin – Spanish Proficiency Exercises


Grades 8-12, with parental supervision


This site features a dozen or more free lessons for each of six levels of proficiency in Spanish – everything from Beginning to Superior!

When you get to the site, you will see an introduction that explains this unique program. The lessons are listed by level in a horizontal menu bar near the top of the page. Place your cursor over the level on the menu bar and a drop-down menu displays each lesson in that proficiency level. Click on the lesson and a new page opens.

In each lesson, there is one simplified video interview, plus video interviews of FIVE native speakers using the grammar and vocabulary for that lesson. The five native speakers could be from Spain, Mexico, Central America, or South America. While the video is playing, the captions can be set to Spanish, English, or None. The videos are also available as podcasts for anywhere viewing by iPod. 

Unlike most traditional textbooks, this website does not include worksheets or quizzes. However, relevant vocabulary, phrases, and grammar are available in the menu located in the right-hand column of each lesson page. There are plenty of videos to watch without the captions if you wish to practice your comprehension skills!

The entire site can be navigated by means of the “site index” in the upper right corner if you prefer.

Speak the Traditional Language of the Sac and Fox Indian Nation of Oklahoma

February 6th, 2021

Talk Sauk


Grades 3-12, with parental supervision


Discover the traditional language of the Sac and Fox Indian Nation of Oklahoma with this website. Derived from the Algonquian language family, the Sauk language is currently only spoken by a handful of elders. The Sauk Language department created this website to help “keep the Sauk language as a living and integral component of the Sac and Fox Nation”.

When arriving at the colorful website, select the “Menu” option in the upper left to expose the menu and find: 

  • About – Learn more about the Sauk Nation’s history and more
  • Dictionary – Use the visual dictionary to learn the Sauk language word for animals, food, numbers, and other everyday words. Click an image to hear the word in the Sauk language.
  • Phrases – Read phrases in English related to colors, days, weather, eating, greetings, feelings, and much more, then click the phrase to hear it in the Sauk language.
  • Games – Play matching games, enjoy the online or downloadable coloring book, or explore the online games of Sauk Count and Climb and Sauk Drop and Catch (NOTE: We could not get these 2 games to load for us.)
  • Storybooks – Read and listen to “Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed”, see the Eric Carle book, Brown Bear, Brown Bear translated into Sauk and the story “Kâta Kîshkô”.
  • Videos – Watch animated stories, see videos about the Sauk language, and learn to count to 10.

And more!

Visitors do not need to be part of the Sac and Fox Nation to appreciate the value and beauty of the language. This website provides a wonderful introduction to the Sauk language and students may be inspired to dig deeper into the language of their own heritage.

Practice Foreign Language Skills with Games

January 30th, 2021



Grades PreK-5, with parental supervision


This ad-supported website offers a range of fun, free, creative online coloring pages and puzzles for kids.

When you get to the site you’ll see a brief introduction and an icon menu of over 50 online coloring pages. Children can virtually color pictures of cartoon and storybook characters as well as animals and everyday things. Also check out the top menu that includes: 

  • Printable – Print out black and white drawings of favorite storybook and animation characters as well items like flowers and a snowman – and color them offline.
  • Puzzles – Put jigsaw puzzles together online. Choose from a selection of images, then drag-and-drop the pieces into place.

NOTE: We found the Drawing and Dots did not work for us, but there is enough here otherwise to have fun. Also, because there are randomly generated ads on this site, parents should preview the site and supervision Internet use.