Joined 4244 days ago
1 posts - 1 votes
Message 1 of 417 February 2012 at 1:00am | IP Logged
Just a bit of background, to clarify what I'm looking for...
I endured 9 years of mandatory "French" because Canada requires it. I got decent grades and never ever gained an understanding of the language that was more than mathematical. My hatred of French lasts to this day.
On the other hand, I always wanted to learn Latin. I would pick up Latin course books, make my way through a few chapters, and find it so unengaging and unproductive that I would inevitably leave it for too long and forget it.
I never viewed language learning as my friend.
And then I picked up the LINGVA LATINA set and I was in my element. Starting off reading and understanding, and learning the grammar by using it, rather than by explanation and chart is absolutely ideal for me. The few bits where I wasn't sure what they were teaching, I could look up in the manual, but reading it in context, rather than theory meant that I could understand it intuitively, and retain it easily.
I got through about ten chapters, before taking a break and then getting very busy, but I remember a lot of it even now, and look forward to going back when I have time again.
For personal reasons, Russian now takes priority, and I would like to find a course similar to Lingua Latina in its approach to get me going. But I am struggling violently with the pronunciation. I was trying to give myself a start looking at free online Russian lessons (http://www.russianlessons.net/ and http://masterrussian.com/)
but even making my way through their pronunciation guides, how I read it, following their rules, varies so frequently from their example clips that I am not confident I will benefit from anything where every word of text is not spoken aloud, at least to begin with.
With Lingua Latina, I was pleased to find (when I finally got the audio that went along with my books) that I had been dot on, just following the rules given in the guide-book. I am definitely not having the same experience here, and I think I really need something that is speech oriented.
So with all that said...
I am leaning toward Rosetta Stone, but I'd like to know if there are any good alternatives, for someone who really doesn't learn well from drilling grammar tables and needs a speech-oriented self-study course.
1 person has voted this message useful
Joined 5812 days ago
280 posts - 408 votes
Message 3 of 420 February 2012 at 5:27am | IP Logged
Why not check out these two free programs? They are funded by Russia. I find them helpful.
Multi-Language Platform "Russian for All. 1000 Practical Exercises"
Training computer program was created by IstraSoft for the Russkiy Mir Foundation. The course is aimed at forming a basic level of Russian language skills as a second language and is a good foundation for those who seek to study in a university where Russian is the language of study.
The training is conducted on three levels, each of which is aimed at solving specific educational tasks.
The main task of this level is forming elementary knowledge of Russian – oral comprehension of Russian speech, construction of sentences and texts in Russian taking into account phonetic and grammatical norms of the Russian language. Special attention in this part of educational program is aimed at forming articular-acoustic skills.
This level is orientated toward forming and strengthening grammatical skills, studying lexicon, and also forming skills for reading and understand of Russian speech.
The main aim of this level, the final course of training, is preparing for studies in university where Russian is the language of study. Studies on this level are based on audio and written texts that are used in the real educational process at the Modern Humanitarian Academy.
Each level includes 72 academic hours of study
This interactive multi-media program teaches basic Russian language using innovative techniques, such as combination of audio and video effects along with the live interaction via the microphone.
The Russian language course comprises four parts: interactive Dictionary, Grammar and Phonetics guide, Dialogue and Movies. By completing various exercises you will learn to correctly pronounce words and phrases, compose sentences, answer questions and comprehend the meaning.
The dialogues lessons teach the spoken language, grammatical structures and the parallel Russian-English sentence patterns.
•Every lesson includes pronunciation exercises to practice your speech via the microphone.
•The exercises are spoken by native speakers.
•This dictionary contains over 11,000 words to learn.
The combination of audio and video will help you to comprehend the language better in various situations.
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