Vivimos en una economica mundíal. Es muy importante que una persona estadounidenese se puede leer y escribir una idoma otro de inglés. Pero, si una persona solamente se puede leer y escribir, tiene solamente un medio de la lengua. Es igualmente importate que una persona puede comprender una conversación en la otra idoma, porque es muy probable que él tiene que hablar a personas en esa lengua. La programa de Homeschool Spanish Academy es excelente para un estudiate aprender como todos los partes de la lengua español. Casi todas las lecciones se completó en español - desde el principío "¡Hola! ¿Como estas? Me llamo Nora, su profesora. ¿Como se llama?"
Ok. Está bien. That's enough Spanish for now. I purposely started this review in Spanish, the same as Nora, Luke's teacher, began their very first session together. Translated, the above says:
We live in a world economy. It is very important that a United States citizen can read and write in a language other than English. However, if a person can only read and write in this other language, he only has half the language. It is equally important that a person can understand a conversation in this foreign language, because it is very likely that at some point he will need to speak to someone using this language. Homeschool Spanish Academy's program is excellent for a student to learn all the parts of the Spanish language. Almost all of the lessons are done in Spanish - from the beginning introduction, "Hi! How are you? I'm Nora, your teacher. What's your name?"
The customer service team at HSA is fantastic. First, they have put together several videos to help the prospective and current student, from "What is Homeschool Spanish Academy?" to "How to set up an account" and " How to turn in your homework." Each video is available on HSA's YouTube Channel. When I experienced some technical issues, they returned my email with directions on how to fix the problem within a few hours. Luke mentioned to Nora that he wanted to continue after the review period, and before I could sit down and focus on registering, we got a phone call from HSA offering to register him for me. All I'd have to do was pay the bill (via Paypal) and schedule the times of his classes. Be my guest!
HSA offers classes for everyone, from early elementary students to adults. When you sign up for lessons from HSA, you can choose from several intensities. Lesson packages are offered for classes once or twice a week, and for multiple durations. If you want to just give it a try, you can do once a week for half a semester (7 lessons) for as little as $59.99 (Elementary Students) - less than $9 per lesson! Luke's high school level course, given to us by HSA so we could do this review, had a value of $99.99 (a still reasonable $14.28 per lesson). Of course, if you sign up for longer commitments, the costs decrease - after this review ends, we will be continuing on (at our expense) for the full 2 lessons per week for 15 weeks (1 semester). The cost for that package is $299.99, which works out to only $10 per class. No, it's not "cheap" when you look at it as a $300 outlay every four months, however, for us it is a great value because I am absolutely certain that there is no way I could hire a private tutor for him for $10 an hour. HSA also offers a complimentary introductory class, so you can test out the program. This video from their YouTube channel shows you what a lesson may look like.
This price includes EVERYTHING - lessons, texts, testing, and transcripts. HSA will hold your information on record for up to 10 years, so that it can be accessed for record information.
With this program, we can schedule instruction at a time when it is convenient for us. This summer, we had once weekly lessons on Wednesday afternoons. This worked because we were able to coordinate Celia's violin lessons with Luke's Spanish lessons, and I just kept our Wednesdays free from other commitments. When I asked them about the scope of the program, it was recommended to do two lessons each week in order to complete an entire year's worth of program in two semesters, especially for high school level. (In two 30-hour semesters, you will complete enough to earn a full credit for the year. If you do less frequent classes, it will take longer to earn the credit.) Luke is happy that we are able to schedule his classes while the others will be at school (or in Damien's case, during naptime), so he has the quiet he needs to focus. HSA recommends a headset with microphone, but we had no problem using the built in speakers/microphone in our computer (we have a MacBook Air) while in a quiet room with the door shut. Depending on your choice of instructor, you have a choice of morning, afternoon, or even evening lessons, making this a great choice for students who are otherwise unavailable during the daytime. If my other children weren't already receiving Spanish instruction at school, this would be a great supplemental program because they could easily work after school; an adult could take evening lessons.
Because Luke has had prior instruction, including a year of high-school-level Spanish, he is able to compare a class setting program with the 1-on-1 opportunity that HSA offers. Though they have not been able to expedite vocabulary learning (because there are so many new words he is learning), Luke feels that the concepts of things are being taught at a pace that acknowledges he's not a complete novice. For example, with ser o estar, Luke had to work harder at learning the vocabulary of the sentences/phrases in the unit, but flew through the concept of "ser=permanent, estar=transient." Nora still will touch on things during their class time, to practice and ensure he knows it, but will not assign that section of homework, because she recognizes it is redundant effort. He also really enjoys having private instruction. Last summer, he applied to test out of Spanish I and was very nearly successful - only about 8 points shy of the qualifying exam grade. He was frustrated because he already knew quite a bit and anxious to fill in that gap between what he knew and proficiency, yet there were students who either had never had Spanish lessons before or that just were more inclined to distract the teacher so they had less work. He has said that having lessons with Nora means he can go at his pace. She will answer any questions and slow down if he's struggling, but he doesn't have to wait for another student to catch on (or want to catch on).
Speaking of that bane of every student's existence...if I had a nickel for every time I asked if somebody's homework was done, I could probably pay for an Ivy League education. Homework for HSA is very simple. Nora usually emails when she has posted the lesson's homework. Luke then logs into his HSA account and downloads a PDF. It took us a little to figure out how to get it to a fill-in form - it needs to be downloaded and saved, not just downloaded and viewed in a preview. From there, Luke was able to enter his answers in. Most weeks, homework is a five to six page document. Half is a lesson/summary, the other half is fill-in-the-blank. It has included "identify this picture" (vocabulary review), conjugating verbs to agree with the subject (syntax), and writing/responding to sentences (conversation, vocabulary, and syntax). It is a very reasonable amount of work, even for a high school student. It takes Luke about half an hour to complete. He then saves it with a new file name (he adds his name to it - this way Nora can see its his before she even has to open it, plus it makes it easy for him to tell if he has completed an assignment by looking at the file name) and uploads it using HSA's upload process.
Homeschool Spanish Academy fills a definite need in our curriculum plans. Luke needs to complete a minimum of two years of a foreign language in order to receive a high school diploma in New Jersey (though realistically, having three or four would make him more attractive to colleges). With HSA, I think he's going to become very proficient by the end of the high school program - he thinks more so than if he was in a regular group class.
Otras familas estudiando con Homeschool Spanish Adademy. Algunos estudiando este nivel, y otros estudiando por otros edades. Haga clic para leer acerca de sus lecciones.
Other crew families reviewed not just High School Spanish but other levels as well. Click to find out what they learned.
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