Whenever I travel to a new destination, I always try to learn the basic phrases and words; after all, it does not only help me in times when there are no English-speakers around, but it also helps for fun interactions with the locals that I meet as a sign of appreciation and respect. That being said, what then is my go-to platform for achieving such skills…? Well, it’s no other than Rosetta Stone [website], the world’s leading mobile-based language learning app!
With its unique lessons and systems, going through the basics of learning a new foreign vocabulary can be fairly easy and fast. However, you may wonder, what if it’s beyond the basics, such as refreshing one’s knowledge of a language they have long forgotten in order to resume going through more in-depth conversations with native speakers?
Rest assured, Rosetta Stone can help with that too.
In fact, this was the case for me recently when I had to plan a trip back to Europe so that I could attend a wedding of my friends from Belgium. Of course, they could speak English with me too, but if I’m going to be with a group of Belgians for a week-long trip, I might as well refresh my Dutch!
TRIVIA: I lived in Belgium for almost 3 years, and naturally, I have come to learn the Dutch language. However, it has been almost 2 years since I last ‘used’ it. It didn’t help either that I still spoke English with my Belgian friends online.
For a few months before my trip, I set aside an hour each day so that I can go through the Dutch courses of Rosetta Stone on my mobile phone — which, by the way, also has pronunciation training. Fast forward to my ‘Eurotrip’ and my Dutch was ‘reborn’! You bet that I had a fun time conversing with my Belgian friends — who quite liked my ‘Netherlands’ accent’ *wink*.
NOTE: My Belgian friends speak ‘Flemish’, a Dutch dialect that is spoken in northern Belgium (Flanders). Either way, they understand and could speak Dutch from the Netherlands (of course), and since Rosetta Stone teaches this kind of Dutch, you could say that I caught up on its accent.
Now if this all seems too good to be true to you, I’m telling you that it’s not — Rosetta Stone simply just works! So if you want to learn more about how it can help you learn or relearn a new language too, do continue reading on below.
About Rosetta Stone
» Learning Courses: Features and Inclusions
The course for every language on Rosetta Stone is pretty standard with the following characteristics:
- Easy installation with about 200+ hours of high quality, interactive learning content and games that help beginner and intermediate learners to directly associate words with sounds and images
- Pronunciation training via the TruAccent patented speech-recognition software technology (you can sound like a native in no time!)
- Schedule online sessions with native-speaking tutors for refining your conversational skills
- Stories and downloadable audio lessons in its original language to listen to and read aloud with
The best part? You can learn a new language on-the-go at whatever time and place because of Rosetta Stone’s cross-device functionality, which means you can learn from your desktop, tablet, or mobile device, and pick up where you left off regardless of the device used. Don’t have an internet connection? The courses can be downloaded in advance as well for offline use, which is especially useful for those times where you are traveling without access to wifi.
How does the learning process go? Every language has its own units/categories, and each of these have a number of immersive lessons and exercises. The methods vary but typically, you…
- Associate photos with the right word/sentence that is written or spoken.
- Fill in the blanks with the correct word according to the shown photo.
- Recite the correct word or sentence (Rosetta Stone’s TruAccent software picks up on your voice and pronunciation).
The way I see it, this approach to learning is not only easy but fun! In a way, it’s like a game and it’s also totally reminiscent of how we first learned a language as a child. Things will get a bit more complicated as you go, but it’s all doable.
The cost? Rosetta Stone operates on a subscription-based service and I highly recommend going for the 24-month one for the best deal! They also offer 3, 6, and 12-month subscriptions depending on your language learning needs, and you can always try their “Free Demo“.
INFORMATION ON THE DUTCH COURSE:
– 12 units/categories: Basics, Greetings and Introductions, Work and School, Shopping, Travel, Past+Future, Friends and Social Life, Dining, Home and Health, Life and World, Everyday Things, Places and Events
– 4 lessons per unit
– Approximately 20 to 30 exercises per unit[
Why I Love Rosetta Stone
» Flexible Learning
Every lesson and exercise shows the approximate time it takes, and can also be downloaded for offline use.
With the fact that I can use Rosetta Stone on my phone both online and offline, I always had the chance to learn on my own time, with any device, and from anywhere in the world! Not to mention, whenever I felt like I wanted a refresher, I can always just go back to repeat a lesson or exercise.
In fact, during the months that I was doing the Dutch course, I built a habit of incorporating Rosetta Stone in my small daily breaks of boredom (or in the time before I sleep), so it never felt much of a chore to me.
» Immersive Curriculum
Like I mentioned before, Rosetta Stone’s dynamic immersive methodology evokes our brain’s natural learning ability for languages (such as when we were young); so somehow, I never got tired of it! I guess it helped that most of the exercises felt like a fun game too. It’s actually fairly amusing how certain things or people started to instantly trigger the right Dutch word or phrase in my head, as if on cue!
Meanwhile, when I started to relearn more on Dutch grammar, I even came to realize that Rosetta Stone explained things way easier than when I learned it in the language school that I attended in Belgium. I was simply blown away by this, and it was truly in these moments that I totally fell in love with the way that the lessons were designed.
» Guaranteed Results
Belgian friends and “family”!
Naturally, everything depends on the amount of time and dedication that you put into it, as well as how much of a routine you develop (remember: repetition helps strengthen the learning process!). Either way, practicing with the app for at least 15 minutes a day will show you results.
As for my case, I am immensely thankful for the help that Rosetta Stone has given me. Besides, in just a matter of 2 months, I was confident enough to start speaking Dutch again, as well as understand what the native speakers were saying. (By the way, my Belgian friends who were a couple also had 2 kids with them during our trip, so you could say that conversing with them was like reliving the lessons that I had in Rosetta Stone!)
Rosetta Stone will and always be a ‘winner’ for me when it comes to learning languages. It’s not only easy, fun and immersive but also highly practical for my needs.
So why not give it a try too? I guarantee that you will end up loving it as I do!
DISCLAIMER: This post is in partnership with Rosetta Stone. But as always, all thoughts that are expressed in this article are fully my own and NOT of any other entity or person in their favor.