Growing up, my best friend was from Mexico. We used to have so much fun playing together, and she'd teach me a little Spanish here and there - and laugh at my butchering of the pronunciation! We've stayed close as we've gotten older, so when she invited me to spend part of the summer in Mexico with her grandparents, I was really excited!. I love everything about Mexican culture, and I wanted to be able to dive into the local community, as well as be able to hold a conversation with her grandparents, who we'd be staying with.
I took Spanish in high school, but honestly, I've forgotten most of what I'd learned in the years since. My work schedule varies week to week, so I didn't want to sign up for classes in case I'd have to miss them. After searching online for a way to learn Spanish without having to take classes, I discovered the Rosetta Stone app, a language learning program that now offers an app that's bursting with a ton of features, all designed to help you learn words and phrases that you'll actually use in real life conversations.
Rosetta Stone has been perfecting its technique for teaching new languages for over 25 years, so I knew this would help incorporate a new language into my everyday life. After downloading the app, I immediately loved the Audio Companion feature: the bite sized lessons are easier for your brain to absorb, and the fact you could listen to them when you don't have wifi was a big plus. I have an hour long bus ride to get to work, so being able to get my ear attuned to native Spanish speakers on my commute was a real plus for me. Before I knew it, I had gotten myself into a great little routine- I would listen to my Audio Companion on the way to work, and in the evening, even while doing some chores around the house.
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Rosetta Stone helped me feel more confident because I could move at a pace that worked for me. There's no pressure to keep up with a class, or have assignments in at a certain date. After a couple of months of using the app, I felt ready to immerse myself in Mexican culture. On the plane there, I decided to reinforce what I had already learned by using the Stories feature. It allows you to read an interesting story, and simultaneously listen to a native speaker reading along, to make sure you get the pronunciation right. It was a great way to pass time on the plane!
Before heading to my friend's family in Mexico City, I spent 3 days in Tulum by myself. The Phrasebook feature on Rosetta Stone's app proved to be a godsend. It works offline, and tells you out loud how to say short, useful expressions that help you when travelling. I never would have had the confidence to travel by myself, but having such a grasp of the local language made me feel a lot safer.
Rosetta Stone's approach to teaching you a new language really worked or me. There's no boring lists of vocabulary to learn, and you can move at a pace that works for you. It takes the pressure off, and the interactive features make it fun. All of the different features mean that your brain is constantly being challenged and exposed to new ways of learning. I'm planning another trip to Mexico early next year, so I can't wait to keep learning and improving my Spanish with Rosetta Stone!
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