Review: Mango Languages

Today I downloaded Mango Languages. First tip: check if you can access Mango Languages through your library account. For people residing in Brisbane, QLD you can use your library card to sign up online.

The program is available on desktop and as an app. I began this program as a A1/B2 Italian user.

I was able to select a language and then the following units were available to me: Mango Languages, Romance, Horse Race in Siena and Carnival of Venice.

I started off by doing a placement test. I really enjoyed the placement test, as it played a piece of dialogue with two key comprehension questions to be answered and then provided some vocabulary and sentence translation activities related to the dialogue. Each time there was a translation to be made, a suggestion regarding the formality and who the sentence was said to was offered as well. For example: informal, to an individual.

However, when it came time to complete a chapter I had some mixed feelings.

Like:

  • the modelled conversations with translations
  • Italian culture notes
  • the grammar notes
  • the time given to guess how to say a word before the answer is shown
  • the way that a sentence is built up through understanding the parts before putting them together to make a sentence.
  • revision of previous learning
  • records time spent learning
  • clear explanations

Dislike:

  • I was able to just swipe through the chapter to the end which doesn’t provide much incentive to complete the unit.
  • I would have liked it to be more multi-modal.
  • I disengaged quickly because I just had to listen and repeat which wasn’t much of a challenge.

Verdict:
I would have really enjoyed Mango Languages when I was beginning to learn Italian. It’s a great resource designed for 72 languages including Swahili and Urdu. However, like many other language learning apps and programs, I don’t find that it engages me at the level I’m on. If the program was more like the ‘placement test’ at the beginning, I think I would have found it more useful. I thoroughly enjoyed the listening comprehension exercises and related sentence activities in the ‘placement test’.

Mango Languages is available for free through many libraries. Sign up and try out this clear and easy to use program to start learning a language.

Andrea xo

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