Who is your teacher?
We all use the internet a great deal of time. So, is learning a language in a virtual setting like reading an online newspaper article? Is it like posting on social media? Is it like calling a friend or family member on FaceTime? Sure! And, not really!
When you think about taking a journey into the world of online or virtual learning it is important to know if the reality and your expectations are in line. The expectation might be that you will learn a new language. What does that mean? Will you acquire the skill you need to have a conversation? Read and understand a restaurant menu or public transportation schedules? Will you be able to find a place to stay or exchange your money at a bank? Will you earn the credit you need for your college application?
Choosing your virtual language instruction can be a daunting task. What do you really want?
Not all online language providers are the same.
Expectation: Low Instructor Engagement
You can find a host of language podcast, apps and YouTube videos that you can consume at your own pace. Babel and Duolingo will set a path in a wide variety of languages that will help you to stay on target. You can set reminders and notifications to keep you on target. In the free versions, you get no instruction to motivate you or connect you to the culture of the language you are learning. Many people start with the best of intention and motivation, only to swipe away the notifications as other tasks and learning are more pressing.
You or your child have deadlines from real people. If you are not highly motivated you will need more from your virtual learning experience.
Expectation: Guided Instruction
There are many ways that you can receive instruction in a World Language from an instructor. FuelEd, Edmentum, Odysseyware and Eduenuity are a few who offer programs for schools and individual instruction. They will provide content and a teacher to work with you. They will sometimes even offer office hours and live tutoring. Yet, the bulk of interactions are driven by email, text, and feedback on assignment and tests. There is only limited instructor engagement in this environment and little chance of building a relationship with a teacher.
While these providers offer a structured course environment in the virtual setting there is little chance of building a relationship with the teacher.
Expectation: Engaged Instruction
The World of Learning Institute offers another model for virtual instruction. Our model offers many of the supports offered in the other models; email reminders, notifications and announcements, and feedback on activities and assignments. The difference is our teachers meet with classes of learners, much like a school classroom. Our World of Learning Institute model pairs learners with other learners, and a teacher to build a community of learners. We use Zoom to host our organized classroom instruction, that is offered in sequence and enhanced by virtual content for practice and checks for understanding.
In our virtual classrooms, teachers get to know their learners and their interest. From this engagement, teachers target language instruction to individual student interests in the language and culture. As these relationships grow, learners work hard as their teachers set high expectations – both challenging and inspiring students to do their best!
Learners are able to listen, speak, read and write, along with gaining an understanding fo the culture where the language is spoken.
Want to know more?
As you consider your options in choosing your Virtual World Language Instruction it is important to consider how you learn best. Each of us has different strengths when it comes to learning.
Try this brief Successful Virtual Learner Survey. Once you complete the survey consider what options would work best for you. Do you have the motivation to work without a teacher? Do you work better when you know what the expectations are and have support to meet your goals?
We love helping learners meet success in learning a new Language. Let us know how we can help guide you or your learner in becoming a successful Virtual World Language learner.
Click HERE – Let’s start a conversation!!