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‘Five places’ shares tips on language learning

San Francisco Chronicle, February 22, 2009
By Susan Fornoff

This article was originally posted at http://www.sfgate.com/travel/article/Five-places-shares-tips-on-language-learning-3170643.php

Judging from comments on last Sunday’s “Five Places” list of oceanfront hotels, readers want cheap options. “Outside of a campground for not-so-rich weirdos, where can you stay by the ocean for under $79 a night?” one asked. Another reader commented: “I know a really good seaside place that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg, but I’m not telling you where it is. So there.”

Now children. Please share – that’s what readers of Spud Hilton’s extensive package of information on learning language are doing; some of their many SFGate.com comments and e-mails appear below.

For another look at the stories and more comments, visit sfgate.com/travel.

– “Find a local restaurant where the target language is spoken by native-speakers.”
– “The public library has lots of language learning resources, books, audios, etc.”
– “Local evening schools. Italingua has a great series of Italian classes (including one for pre-vacation, ‘postcards from Italy’). Alliance Francaise likewise does wonderful French. I’ve heard that the Goethe-Institut is great for German.”
– “Absolutely nothing beats two weeks at www. reginacoe li.nl/eng/index.html”
– “The best way to learn is to take language classes in the country you are visiting.”
– “Centro Latino in the East Bay (Berkeley) is a great place to learn Spanish. Small to very small classes and excellent native speaker instructors (also Portuguese).”
– “The best method for adult learners working on their own is the Pimsleur series of audio CDs, based on drills and prompted recall, with repeated review of previously learned material.”
– “Live, online native speaker tutors with video conferencing, which is almost like being in the same room as the tutor, but at a much lower price… All you need is a Webcam and a headset (or microphone and speakers).” (Recommended: Interlangua.com and Speakshop.com)