As we patiently await a time where we can all connect with each other again in person, many of us are seeking ways of connection that can be done from within the walls of our homes, or even the comfort of our beds. We engage with our digital devices to reach out to friends, keep up with news, or simply distract our minds for a while. One way SPL offers a way to connect from home, even allowing you to stay cozy in bed for a bit, is with a longer term goal in mind: language learning. Why not use this time to learn a new language, or continue your education with one you’re already familiar with? That way, when we all make our way back into the world, there’s an opportunity for connection that maybe you didn’t have before.Mango Languages is an online language learning platform that Seattle Public Library offers free to all its patrons. It’s available from your web browser, or can be downloaded from the Apple App Store or Google Play – you just have to access it through SPL’s Online Learning page first.
There are over 70 languages to learn from, including dialects for different regions (seems best to know Castilian Spanish vs Latin American Spanish if you’re planning to travel to Spain, right?), and it adapts to your learning style and pace, because we don’t all learn in the same way, and that’s important if we want all this great information to stick.
“We believe technology shouldn’t replace the connection you make with others — it should enhance it. Mango is centered around you and adapts to your learning behavior. Uniquely engineered to evolve with your learning habits, Mango prepares you for confident conversation and lasting connections.” – Mango Languages website
And Mango goes beyond vocabulary, it ties grammar notes, pronunciation, and cultural notes into its lessons as well. I began learning Urdu through Mango and found it extremely helpful to know, and understand why, I should greet folks in the Urdu-speaking community in a specific way. Language is so much more than words, it’s customs, and tradition, and culture, and Mango gives you a sneak peek into that. It also has some great visual learning features to help tie together how each word or phrase you are learning translates into another language, something I, as a highly visual learner, greatly appreciate.
If you’re still not convinced to give it a try, here’s a great video on how it all works. It’s free, it’s at your fingertips, and it’s fun! Spend an hour, or go through just one lesson – learn something new and open your world up to a whole new way of connecting.
~Posted by Kassaundra F.