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Opening Song and New Features Suggestion

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Maziou
New in Town
Posts: 2
Joined: February 2nd, 2009 12:00 pm

Opening Song and New Features Suggestion

Postby Maziou » January 11th, 2011 11:36 pm

This isn't really an important issue, but I kind of miss the old opening theme. It was simple and quick. This current theme song is longer, and makes me want to roll my eyes, with its weird techno feel. I would be a little embarassed if I was listening to a lesson, and someone next to me overheard that theme song. I think in the case of an opening theme, less is more. And I don't think the new theme song really appeals to the main demographic that uses this site (though I don't have any special insight into that).

As for my new feature suggestion, first I think it would be a good idea to implement video or interactive lessons that use a similar learning technique as Live Mocha, or Rosetta Stone. While the visual-learning method they use isn't good enough to stand on its own, it is excellent at helping people learn vocabulary, and retain the information by providing a visual reference that helps them remember the new words more effectively. It does a poor job at teaching grammar, and when used on its own, causes a lot of confusion, when someone needs more details, but I think it would be a wonderful supplement to the current lessons.

My second new feature suggestion, would be linking the different language sites like japanesepod101, englishpod101, russianpod101, and others into a language-exchange community. People learning different languages want to speak to natives of the language they are learning. Creating a language-exchange section that is common to all the sites, would bring these people together, and I think increase the number of subscribers, who want to practice their new-found knowledge with others who speak it as part of their daily lives. There are already sites out there that do that, but I think it would be a great feature for this site and the other sites to have.

Finally, there is no single method that works best, for learning a language. But if multiple methods are combined into a single site, it can provide the one-stop location many people are looking for, when learning a language. I think it's important not to get so caught up in a single good idea, the way Rosetta Stone did, and ignore the other good learning methods, that work equally well. When put together, the different methods form an excellent whole-language learning solution.

Anyway, those are my suggestions

Jessi
JapanesePod101.com Team Member
Posts: 822
Joined: November 25th, 2007 9:58 am

Postby Jessi » January 12th, 2011 1:46 am

Hi Maziou,
Thank you for your comments and feedback!
I think you've made a lot of good suggestions - we'll take them into consideration. :ue:

Have you seen our new video series that just started, Learn With Video and Pictures?
It's a lot like the video lessons that you are describing - we don't use any English translations and rely on pictures and videos to get the meaning across.The first one can be found here:
http://www.japanesepod101.com/2011/01/0 ... -japanese/

The rest of the videos in this series will be coming out on Fridays, so please keep an eye out for them :)

Thanks again!
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Maziou
New in Town
Posts: 2
Joined: February 2nd, 2009 12:00 pm

Kind of

Postby Maziou » January 12th, 2011 8:32 am

Well, that's sort of what I was referring to, but I'm not sure I like the way it is implemented here. Too fast paced, not enough building on what you previously learned, and no English explanations. I think the week point with Rosetta Stone, is there are no English explanations at the end. Well that, and it's not really good for learning grammar. But it's great for learning new words.

You see, with Rosetta Stone, you will see a red apple, and someone will say りんご Then they will show a green apple and say りんご Then a yellow apple will be shown and they will say りんご So it becomes obvious that りんご means apple.

Then they will show a red ball and say あか Then a red kite, then a red car, and each time, they say あか So it becomes obvious that あか means red. Then they will do the same for green stuff and say みどり

Then they will show a red apple and say あか の りんご Then a green apple and say みどり の りんご So based on what you previously learned, you know they are saying red apple and green apple.

But they way the video you pointed out here does it, doesn't spend enough time learning basic concepts, and then building on those concepts more and more.

I think they way Rosetta Stone does it, can be improved here, by making those kind of videos a supplement to existing lessons. Something you watch, before reading the PDF files, or listening to the audio portion of the lessons. It will help you remember new words better, but if you get confused, the audio lessons and PDF file will clear up the confusion. Plus the audio files and PDF documents will do a MUCH better job at explaining grammar concepts. As stand-alone lessons, these kind of video lessons generally cause more confusion, and aren't helpful, once you get past the most basic words. I think they are best used as a supplement, to be taken with existing lessons. Helping you learn the words you will study in the new lesson's PDF and audio files.

Of course, some words could never make it into the video lessons. How would you use pictures to teach someone the word, "existential"? But for beginner and intermediate vocabulary levels, these would be an amazing feature to existing lessons, I think.

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