Nature for Kids Beginning Spanish plays like a nature documentary for young elementary-aged children, offering a very enjoyable study of animals and plants on the African Savannah. Narrated entirely in Spanish, this 40-minute DVD contains twelve vignettes filled with stunning wildlife photography and amusing animal antics sure to hold a young child’s interest regardless of whether he understands the Spanish-language narration or not.
Narrated in Spanish but also available with English subtitles, this language immersion program features 12 lessons focusing on various wild animals and their characteristics. Nature for Kids includes clear nature footage showcasing animals including lions, giraffes, monkeys, gazelles, hippos, birds and insects. While also examining specific anatomical parts of the creatures (such as a spotlight on paws or teeth), colors, sizes, and other facets, in a conversational manner. Combining interesting clips (such as lion cubs batting each other in play) with creative sound effects (snoring; hyped-up music to reflect action), this enriching language program is recommended.
3.5 out of 4 Stars
Members of the Fernandez family are excited to be hosting Javier, an exchange student from Madrid for the summer – a scenario that provides the context for seven themed lessons aimed at viewers with some exposure to Spanish. Vocabulary is introduced in the context of a short conversation. After each dialogue, the featured vocabulary and phrases are reviewed with onscreen graphics and visuals. Several original songs are also used to reinforce learning… verbal exchanges are both realistic and nicely paced, with everyone speaking clearly. DVD extras include a bonus grammar lesson and as well as interactive games. Highly Recommended.
I would recommend this program for young children with an interest in learning basic conversational Spanish. This is not an in-depth language program for older children and/or adults, but it is certainly a fun, enjoyable program for young children. Read Article
The Old Schoolhouse Magazine
Learning French has never been so much fun. This wonderful program introduces children to the language using a setting that they can easily relate to and non-intimidating vocabulary. It’s young Penelope’s birthday and her family is joining her for the party. The celebration is the basis for seven lessons introducing greeting phrases, and words for family members, colors, parts of the body, food, numbers, and gifts. Each lesson includes brief skits with dialogue using the target words. Following each skit, one of the characters repeats the key phrases as the vocabulary is written on the screen in French and English. Several of the lessons include upbeat songs that contain the targeted vocabulary and will have children singing along in no time. A comprehensive phrase review and song booklet is included that contains all of the dialogue, translations, and answers to the quizzes. A must-have for every collection.
5 out of 5 Doves
This DVD should be in every home. I thoroughly enjoyed my first lesson in Spanish. Each lesson is broken down into short meaningful segments that teach through repetition and song. Your children will play this one over and over again. I encourage parents to sit down with their children and reinforce the lessons they are learning. This one is a must have for home schoolers and parents who want their children to grow up knowing another language.
Review Board, The Dove Foundation
The Language Tree online program provides a user-friendly approach to language learning. The online lessons are engaging and clear; the exercises are well thought out and provide reinforcement and review.
Susan Briziarelli Associate Dean of Italian, Adelphi University
Language Tree offers language learners a scaffolded and highly interactive opportunity to learn their target language. Featuring children as speakers in the video clips provides a natural approach to language learning.
David Noyes Author and Writer, McGraw Hill’s Open Court English Learner Support Guide
I’ve always wanted to learn to speak at least a second language. I wish I had paid more attention in classes in high school and not simply studies for tests but truly tried to learn Spanish or German. And I have the same goal for my children…for them to effortlessly speak a language other than English. My new plan is to learn alongside them. Language Tree is going to help with that! My son August and I watched the German DVDs together and had a lot of fun trying our best to pronounce conversational phrases you’d use throughout your day in Germany.
I’ve reviewed the video Billy and Benboo and really like the Multi-Cognition Approach on which it is based. I also like the organization of the story. I believe that both children and adults who deal with children will find it entertaining while learning Chinese.
Dr. Lihua Zhang Dept. of East Asian Languages and Culture, UC Berkeley
We watched Italian for Kids during all the children’s Italian classes. It was really a lot of fun. Children enjoyed the videos and had a good time playing the ‘What time is it?’ remote control game.
Marina Bezzati Language Teacher, San Diego Italian Community Center
I watched the Chinese for Kids DVD and really enjoyed the whole production. It is a great learning tool at a beginner’s level. The user interactive features were great to use and supportive of learning. I think it would be good for parents to use to learn basic Chinese. Younger children in K and Pre-K could also use it as a tool.
Warren W. Wright Chinese American International School (CAIS), San Francisco
Anybody wanting an introduction to Mandarin Chinese would greatly benefit from this video. The teaching methods are clear, concise, and repeated for emphasis each time. Each video has an instructional booklet with phonetic pronunciations for each word. The cartoon characters are cute, without being cutesy, they don’t detract from the message: to teach the basics of an intricate language. The tones that are characteristic of the Mandarin dialect are taught with pictures and sounds that any young child can grasp. One word, spelled exactly the same, has four different meanings, depending on where the inflection is placed and the tonal quality in which it is spoken. This is a quality product, recommended for anyone wanting to connect with the Chinese culture.
Review Board, The Dove Foundation
Learn Chinese with Billy and Benboo is a wonderful beginners level video tape which teaches children in a fun and effective way to learn Mandarin Chinese. Billy, his family, and their dog Benboo help to teach every day vocabulary words and phrases appropriate for situations such as meeting and greeting, bathing, playing with friends, eating and counting in Chinese. The lessons are learned through fun stories and sing-along songs. The video does an excellent job explaining the various tones and helping to develop proper pronunciation. I highly recommend this video.”
DeNese Olson Vice PresidentThree Rivers Families with Children from China
Several songs throughout the video make the whole process fun! Literally, you can dance with the songs while you and your children are learning – that’s what I did with my kids. The short sentences are easy to follow, and for every scene you get a quick review on what you just learned. The multiple story sessions are situations you bump into daily. It is amazing that all of the above is packed in just 30 minutes!
Martin Liu Activity Director (School Years 2003 – 2005) Board of San Diego Chinese Academy