Many Americans encounter great obstacles in their efforts to learn a foreign language. School systems don’t offer foreign language classes until middle school or later. At the college level classes usually have 20 to 30 students, far too many to provide sufficient opportunities to speak. In addition, the teaching approach is often academic with an emphasis on grammar. This isn’t at all the way we learn how to talk.
Grammar helps show the logic of how a language works, but it is faster, easier and more effective to develop fluency speaking and using the language in real-life scenarios through communicative task-based exercises.
At SigloXXI we offer communicative classes where vocabulary is given by topic (so we avoid random word-learning and thus benefit vocabulary retention), and grammar is developed by repetition and conversation. We avoid focusing on long grammatical explanations and vocabulary drills. Our goal is to use the class as an immersion setting; grammar, vocab and drill exercises will be assigned as homework. During class we'll practice by doing exercises that simulate real-life situations and challenge your mind by encouraging you to communicate with the language you have learned.
A friendly atmosphere is essential when we learn languages, so being in a small group is important. Also, conversational skill comes only with sufficient repetition of the basic patterns of communication. That means you have to talk. You have to practice speaking. Adequate opportunities for speaking can only be provided when classes are limited in size.
Language is a skill like skating or playing the guitar; it requires consistent effort and practice. At Siglo XXI we provide you with the immersion environment you need to solidify your language skills.