This past week was spent using Mango Languages alongside Duolingo to continue my journey in learning Italian. Mango Languages was introduced to me by Brittany a fellow classmate who is learning German as part of her major project. In order to sign up for Mango I needed to have a public library card through the city of Regina. I was able to login using the link found on the Regina Public Library e-learning services site. When I logged in I was able to create my profile, select my language and do a placement test before beginning. You can find the video of my placement test in this post. If you’d like to see how to get started with Mango Languages and how it looks check out my brief tutorial.
In this video I explain how the lessons work and give a brief review of what I like and don’t like about the lesson format.
For the most part I have nothing negative to say about Mango Languages. The only thing I don’t like is the voice comparison feature. I don’t like that I have to listen for myself to see how my voice compares to the narrators voice in terms of pronunciation. I prefer Duolingo’s voice recognition software that will tell me if my pronunciation is correct or not (although I sometimes feel the software is a little off). If you are looking to practice speaking and reading Mango is great for that. There is no written practice and you do not get to read Italian and then answer in English like you can with Duolingo.
I decided to make this quick slideshow to showcase some of the skills I learned using Mango this past week. I learned a bit more than the slideshow demonstrates but if I wanted to showcase all of my learning it would have been a pretty random presentation so I decided to just focus on my family because I was pretty excited to have learned how to introduce family members in Italian.
A few things I have learned in the few short weeks I have been learning Italian:
- I have found that I cannot take a day off from practicing the language as it seems to fade quite quickly.
- I continue to struggle with endings of verbs depending on the context of the sentence.
- I am not great a pronouncing a lot of the words yet and also struggle to roll my r’s.
- There are slight similarities between French and Italian that I have to really think hard about in order to use the correct language. These similarities cause me grief sometimes, but often it helps me because the Italian word is so similar to the French word that I can relate them and it helps me remember it.
Some goals moving forward:
- Practice EVERYDAY! Even if it’s only enough time for one lesson. It will be better than nothing and will keep the basics fresh. Every little bit counts right?
- Write down pronunciations and words that I struggle to remember rather than continuing to make the same mistake over and over. When I put the pen to paper it helps me remember things a lot better.
- Explore a different app/website each week while continuing to use the Duolingo app on my phone.
What I hope to accomplish over the course of this project:
- I want to feel confident in my basic communication skills. I will know I have accomplished this when I reach out to someone to have a conversation with them.
- Become at least 50% fluent in Italian using Duolingo to document this percentage. I am currently still only 3% which is a little discouraging because I have completed a lot of lessons and come a long way since I started. I haven’t been using Duolingo as much because I have been focusing more on Mango this past week. I am hoping 50% is a realistic goal.
- I want to have at least three conversations with someone else speaking Italian starting March 7.
I have also decided to create a reflection rubric to use each week after seeing some classmates create rubrics for their project. I figure this is a good way to keep me accountable and compare my week to week progress.
Next week my major focus will be on Babbel. This is a paid service so I don’t know how long I will choose to use it but I will try it out. I plan on continuing to use Duolingo and Mango as well.