Digital Learning Resources

Digital learning management systems

  •  ClassDojo – Connects teachers with students and parents to build classroom communities.

  • Edmodo – Tools and resources to manage classrooms and engage students remotely, offering a variety of languages.

  • Google Classroom – Helps classes connect remotely, communicate and stay-organized

  • Moodle – Community-driven and globally-supported open learning platform.

  • Seesaw- Allows teachers to share interactive worksheets, send recordings and give feedback. There is a section for parents that allows them to scroll through like Facebook.

Self-directed learning content

  • Duolingo – Application to support language learning. Supports numerous base and target languages.

  • Quizlet – Learning flashcards and games to support learning in multiple subjects.

  • Quizziz - Students can try language quizzes created by their teacher or from bank of activities. Can be played individually or as a class.

  • Education Perfect - online learning platform. Students require login and school/teacher can manage activities students access.

  • Clickview- your school should have account. You can use premade resources, or embed your own questions into videos.

  • Pangaea Learning- Has cames and audio lessons in Spanish, French, German, Portuguese, Italian, Greek, Arabic, English, Japanese, Dutch, Russian, Chinese, Korean, Hebrew.

  • LearnEnglishKids- by the British Council, and is designed for Chinese, Arabic, Russian, French and Spach speakers to learn English.

  • Languages online- Free resources for language teachers and students (Chinese, French, German, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Macedonian, Spanish, Turkish, ESL for beginners)

  • Digital Dialects- The Digital Dialects website offers interactive games and Additional Languages learning materials with audio for learning 80 languages. Designed for both independent language students and for classroom use, games are free to use and do not require registration.

  • Not free-FluentU - FluentU takes real-world videos—like music videos, movie trailers, news and inspiring talks—and turns them into personalized language learning lessons. All the video content is made by mother-tongued speakers of the target language for mother-tongued speakers so students get exposed to real, authentic language the way it is used every day in the modern world.

Collaboration platforms that support live-video communication

  • Hangouts Meet – Video calls integrated with other Google’s G-Suite tools.

  • Teams – Chat, meet, call and collaboration features integrated with Microsoft Office software.

  • Skype – Video and audio calls with talk, chat and collaboration features.

  • Zoom – Cloud platform for video and audio conferencing, collaboration, chat and webinars.

Creative digital resources for students to create content in the target language

  • Cartoon Story Maker- can ask your students to make an online cartoon in the target language

  • Game maker- students can make games in the target language

  • Sentence maker- students can make sentences in the target language

Additional Ideas

 

Language Specific Resources

 

Japanese

Indonesian

  • Dest Nalsas Readers - Listening and reading activities for students (Indonesian)

  • Jalan Sesama (Indonesian Sesame Street) Youtube channel is excellent, not only for young students!        

  • Bobo - This is best used as teacher source of child- level articles, videos, cartoons, stories, etc)

  • Rasa Bahasa  - Indonesian Games

  • Hello World- More than 500 Indonesian resources and games

  • Resourceful Indonesian- Has ideas for teachers, and links to student games.

Mandarin

  • ChineseFor.Us - Youtube channel with language videos from beginners. Membership needed for premium content.

  • Hello word- Many games for Chinese language learners.

  • Ancient China for Kids- Games on Ancient China

  • Wartgames- Games and puzzles on China in general (many are in English about Chinese geography, culture and history.

French

German


Spanish


Italian

For more Italian resources, see Vivianna Golding’s list below with her synopsis and critique.

 

  • The Italian experiment, a free online resource with popular children’s fairy tales translated into Italian, with stories like Little Red Riding Hood or the 3 Little Pigs, which can help children to familiarise themselves with Italian grammar and vocabulary.

  • Chillola, a great and free online resource for teaching vocabulary to children. As with many of the other websites it teaches vocabulary using different photos and games. The site itself is very easy to use, and there are a variety of subjects that children can study – like animals, family, food and colours.

  • Canzoni per bimbi.it, a popular Youtube Channel which is perfect for children who are learning Italian; there are a number of simple Italian children’s songs, all accompanied by an animated video. The majority of the songs are known by children who speak all different languages like Old McDonald had a Farm or the Wheels on the Bus Go Round and Round, and are very easy to learn and sing along to in Italian. Each song only lasts a couple of minutes and becoming familiar with these songs can be very useful for children learning Italian as they are able to practise listening to and speaking Italian while having fun. All of the songs are free to view on Youtube and the channel regularly uploads new songs and videos, and are also available as an app on the App Store and Google Play.

  • Italian Fairy Tales, a great Youtube channel which can help children learn and understand some Italian through story telling. There is a large selection of famous children’s tales, like Hansel and Gretel or the Jungle Book, with Italian narration and English subtitles and they are all accompanied by animated videos. Each video lasts between 5 and 15 minutes. This is a great resource for children of any age who want to learn Italian as they are able to listen to Italian spoken by native speakers, but the videos and subtitles make them very easy to understand. The videos are all of a very high quality but some of the best are the Three Little Pigs, Heidi and The Wizard of Oz. All of the videos are available for free on YouTube.

 

Indigenous languages- These are grouped together as many resources cover multiple languages.

 

 

List of Languages Apps - Viviana Golding

 

 

1-Duolinguo

 

Duolinguo successfully merges gamification and learning in an App with over 100 million users. The app has become a staple example of mobile language learning. For each language there are specific courses that are targeted at those with different first languages than English.

 

Characteristics:

·         User account not required

·         Supports lots of languages

·         Many pathways to learn

·         Many free lessons

Languages: Spanish, French, German, Chinese, English, Japanese, Korean, Italian, Portuguese, Dutch, Irish, Danish, Swedish, Turkish, Esperanto, Norwegian, Ukrainian, Hawaiian, Russian, Polish, Hindi, Welsh, Hebrew, Vietnamese, Hungarian, Greek, Swahili, Swedish, Romanian, Indonesian, Czech, Navajo, Klingon, High Valyrian.

Duolingo works online through the website, as well as via the app for Android, iPhone, iPad, and Windows 10.

NB: Student age 13+.

2-Memrise

 

The free version of the app gives access to the same number of languages as the Pro version, with fewer functionalities. Where Memrise truly excels is in its ability to make vocabulary practice fun and engaging.

The fun of Memrise lies in two things: memes and gamification. The app follows a learning method that relies on creating funny or bizarre associations with the studied words. Courses are often coupled with memes designed to playfully help remember the vocabulary. The memes are created by the community and everyone can add their own! Both earning, revising and creating memes is a source of points that help students advance in the Memrise hierarchy of users (from Membryo to Overlord).

 

Characteristics:

 

  • Unique teaching methods

  • Several languages

  • Upgrade options

  • Needs user account

 

Languages: English, French, Spanish, Dutch, Portuguese, Norwegian, Danish, Japanese, Korean, Icelandic, Slovenian, Arabic, Turkish, German, Swedish, Polish, Italian, Chinese, Russian, Mongolian.

 

Memrise is accessible from the Android, iPhone, or iPad app, as well as online through a web browser.

 

NB: Student age 10+

 

3-Busuu

The Busuu app and company were named after the Busuu language, which is on the verge of extinction, with only 8 native Busuu speakers in the world. Busuu offers the opportunity for users to learn the endangered Busuu language as well as full courses in twelve other languages. Busuu offers a free and premium version and of all the other Apps mentioned, the smallest amount of free content. However, the free content includes interactive exercises and quizzes designed to be fun as well as effective. One of Busuu’s unique features, which is only available in the premium version, is the ability to offer language mastery exams and certificates for varying levels of proficiency. Busuu is able to offer these exams, which correlate with the levels of the Common European Framework of Reference, due to their partnership with education company McGraw-Hill. The lessons are organised in topical themes where we learn skills and expressions connected to tasks. Each course also comes with a separate mini “travel course” for those who need to quickly get the basics before a trip abroad—pretty handy!

 

Characteristics:

·         Great for all experience levels

·         Socialize with other learners

·         Provide feedback to other users

·         Small language selection

·         Lots of features are not free

·         User account necessary

Languages: German, Spanish, Portuguese, French, English, Italian, Russian, Polish, Turkish, Japanese, Chinese, Polish

The Busuu language learning service is available from the web, iPhone, iPad, and Android devices.

NB: Student age: all ages, according to the App creators

Check BUSUU blog to gain information about children learning/acquiring languages at:

https://blog.busuu.com/children-learning-languages/

 

4-HelloTalk

 

HelloTalk takes an entirely different approach from other Languages Apps. Instead of choosing from predetermined lessons, learners are connected with native speakers of their target language. HelloTalk aims to facilitate speaking practice and eliminate the potential stress of real time conversation. Learners can find native speakers and converse with them using a whatsapp-like chat with voice and text messages. Users can correct each other’s messages with an in-built correction tool, which transforms the language exchanges into tiny tutoring sessions. The app also has an integrated translation system to help you avoid those moments when you really want to communicate something but just lack the one word that gives the sentence its proper meaning.

 

Characteristics:

·         Interaction with other speakers

·         Individualised program

·         Settings give some control over which other users of the app can see your profile and try to match with you.

 

HelloTalk works with Android and iOS.

 

Student age: older secondary students. There might be activities for younger students.

 

Check Hello Talk blog for ideas on how to use the App at:

https://www.lingualift.com/blog/hellotalk-10-bizarre-tricks-no-one-told-you-about/

 

 

5-Babbel

The free version comes with 40 classes, and the app allows students to learn a fair amount of phrases in one of the 13 languages it teaches. Each class starts from step-by-step teaching of vocabulary with the aid of pictures. Then the words are being used in related phrases and short dialogues adjusted to the student’s level to help quickly build conversation skills. Handy pop-ups with the app explain most important grammatical points related to the learned material and the desktop version includes short cultural notes. Apart from the general beginner’s courses Babbel also has separate packages devoted to improving specific skills such as grammar or vocabulary.

Characteristics:

 

·         Blends listening, reading, writing, and speaking

·         Quantity of content varies by language

·         No real-time Web classes

 

Languages: Danish, Dutch, French, German, Indonesian, Italian, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swedish, and Turkish.

Babbel works either with Windows 7 or above or Mac OS X 10.12 or above.

Student age: older secondary students

Check announcement about Babbel making available its resources for free during this pandemic times at: https://techcrunch.com/2020/03/25/babbel-makes-its-language-learning-app-free-for-all-us-students

 

6-Mindsnacks

This App takes gamification to a whole different level. Each out of seven languages they teach comes with eight or nine tiny games that are designed to learn vocabulary, grammar and practise listening. There are short simple lessons outlining concepts that then get practised or tested in the games before they achieve the status of being mastered. Mindsnacks monitors your progress so you can clearly see how much more learning you need to achieve proficiency in every skill. It’s such a fun app that even if you do master a skill it is still fun to go back and play more games to practise it! The basic download is free.

Characteristics:

·         Developed with evidence-based features in mind, based on research in human learning and memory

·         Words and phrases presented in multiple formats: visual, auditory, and pictorial, allowing the learner to form complex multisensory representations to enhance retention

·         The touchscreen game mechanics, colourful and quirky characters and music enhance the learning experience across all of the mini games and challenges.

 

Languages: English-ESL, French, German, Italian, Mandarin Chinese, Portuguese, and Spanish

It is an iOS App (many other Minisnacks Apps available in other Learning Areas)

Student age: 7-12

7-Triplingo

As the name suggests the app is aimed at travellers who need to brush up on their language skills. The app helps to speak and be understood. In addition, the creators took care to include current expressions rather than textbook formulas. A feature called the slang slider displays different levels of formal or casualty of each phrase so students can adjust it to the specific context they are in. The lessons are divided into handy sections such as “safety phrases” or “business phrases”. With the free version of the app one gets access to about 15% of the resources and no audio, but it’s still a great and fun resource.

Characteristics:

·         Full content in 13 languages, with support for 19 languages using the instant voice translator and access to a live translator in over 180 languages

·         Instantly translates your voice or connect to a live translator,

·         Provides a crash course on the local culture

·         Functional Language

 

Languages: Castilian Spanish, French, German, Hebrew, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and Thai. An additional 10 languages are supported in the Voice Translator: Greek, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Hungarian, Norwegian, Polish, Slovak and Swedish.

It works with iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

Student age: older students and adults

8-MosaLingua

MosaLingua is a fully rounded resource for languages including French, Spanish and Italian. One can choose to go through the standard lesson program starting from simple phrases and numerals, or you can opt to go for one of the specific topical packs, for example people, time or tourism. The free version has ample resources.

Characteristics:

·         Uses spaced repetition (SRS) to help language learners efficiently learn words and phrases

·         Uses a flashcard a system that has an audio pronunciation by the native speakers of a particular language

·         Focuses on long-term memorization.

·         Uses techniques that are based on intellectual and psychological concepts to achieve visual and hearing memory.

 

Languages: English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Russian and Portuguese.

Works with iOS and Android smartphones

Student age: all levels of language tuition

Check an interesting article about learning languages at any age at:

https://www.mosalingua.com/en/can-you-learn-a-language-at-any-age/

 

9-HiNative

HiNative is a free, bite-size language exchange. One gets the benefits of contact with mother-tongued speakers without the hassle of searching for an exchange partner or scheduling a chat. The basic premise is to bring native speakers together with learners to help each other resolve little (or not so little…) language struggles. No question is stupid or too simple: students can ask for translations, input on pronunciation, or advice on cultural norms.

Characteristics:

·         HiNative community is very quick in responding

·         The Point system is very rewarding

·         Has a flying squirrel as a mascot

 

Languages: Spanish, Chinese Mandarin, French, German, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Italian, Russian, Arabic

It works with iOS 11.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.

Student age: 1