I know you’ve seen these books in the store and walked right by them laughing. Well, I’d like to tell you that the books by Kristine K. Kershul are actually very good products.
Of course I’m not here to tell you that you can actually become completely fluent in the language with the “10 minutes a day” method, but you can learn enough to visit that country and to understand a little of the structure of the language.
These are some components of the “10 minutes a day” products:
- 25 steps that are easy and include word games, crossword puzzles, cultural tips, and more.
- Question words that will enable you to form any question with the appropriate key word. For example: you’ll learn how, when, where, and more.
- Sticky labels so you can stick to items in your homes so you can internalize the names of common household words.
- Free words are words that are common between the two languages. For example the word for ticket in French is ticket, and pronounced only slightly differently than English. The "10 minutes a day" books capitalize on these so you can start using them right away.
- Flash cards come with the English translation on one side and the word in the target language along with the pronunciation explanation on the other. This enables you to practice the words several times a day.
- Beverage and menu guides come in the form of menus to acquaint you with what you’ll find in that language. They focus on the most commonly-served items in that country.
- Pronunciation guides enable you to know how to pronounce common phrases in the language.
- Glossaries in the backs of the books give you a good start on the language by focusing on the kinds of words you’ll need when you visit the country.
- Color illustrations show you pictures of the currency and stamps used in that country and a clear explanation of the traffic signs used in the country.
- Interactive CD-ROMs now enable you to complete activities that reinforce what you’ve learned.
Another handy product from “10 minutes a day” is their Language Map Series. I’m sure you can’t imagine pulling out a book and thumbing through the pages every time you want to find a word. When you’re traveling you can carry around a phrase guide that is a laminated and folded cheatsheet that includes over 1000 words and phrases along with full color artwork.
The “10 minutes a day” products are available in Arabic, Chinese, Dari, Farsi, French, German, Greek, Hawaiian, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Norwegian, Pashto, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swahili, and Vietnamese.
I’ve used the “10 minutes a day” books and I can attest to their quality. Even if you’re not going to visit the country, but you’re considering learning the language, purchase one of these to ease your way into the language and culture. It will give you enough of a smattering to let you know what you’re getting into.
If you’re going to seriously delve into Spanish, look at our review of Spanish learning websites.
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