I’ve wanted to learn Spanish most of my life, but I’ve never gotten passed a couple of classes in high school and college.
I tried again a few years ago. Even after spending a few hundred dollars on Rosetta Stone, I stopped using it after a couple of weeks.
That’s about to change thanks to LiveMocha, a social networking site focused on language learning.
LiveMocha offers me something I was missing, community.
Every lesson has four required sections (Learn, Review, Write, Speak) and optional exercises.
The software grades the Learn and Review sections and the optional exercises. The community evaluates the Write and Speak sections.
One of the most satisfying features of Live Mocha is helping others in the community learn English. Reviewing submissions is addictive!
In offering feedback, members of the community can type comments and record responses. The recorded responses are terrific. They allow the learner to hear the nuances of native pronunciation and sentence formation, much like what we’d hear in a public setting.
As you review exercises and others review your submissions, you start build your personal network.
I’ve found myself committed to certain connections. As soon as I see an email (delivered both to my LiveMocha and external email inboxes), I attempt to offer feedback as soon as possible.
Why It Might Work
- A human connection.
- A large and growing community. Even without connections, submissions are reviewed relatively quickly.
- Mutual benefit. Many of my connections are native Spanish speakers learning English.
- Notifications to external email. Having emails delivered to my inbox has helped me stay engaged. This is especially true because the emails are from people that need their work reviewed, not marketing copy from a faceless company.
- Free and paid options. There are tutors, exportable content, and other options available to premium subscribers.
It's been almost four weeks now.
I may not be as far as I’d like, but I’m still engaged.