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TOS Crew Review — Speekee

January 21st, 2011

Speekee logo

“Adios . . . Adios . . . Adios, my amigo, adios.”

Brooke started it, and soon Nathan and Faith joined in. Blake (13 years old) groaned a bit and tolerated their jubilant singing on the way to gym and swim. Paige couldn’t help singing along even though she hasn’t really watched the videos with them.

And so, Speekee has infiltrated our home. The irresistible jingles and repetitive dialogue are really teaching my kids some basic Spanish, and they are liking it.

Speekee

Product: Speekee Spanish online learning videos

Details: An online Spanish learning program that includes videos, activity suggestions, and printable worksheets. Ten lessons in all to introduce a child to conversational Spanish.

Price: $7.50 per month

What we loved . . .

  • Foreign language without tears. We’ve tried so many foreign language program I could almost cry. Each one we either don’t learn from, get tired of, or just plain don’t like. Speekee has brought something new to our home — foreign language learning that kids love, and I do, too.
  • Full access. With the monthly fee you can watch and rewatch each video as much as you please. Your kids can watch on their own or as a group, with you or without. My kids did a little of all those arrangements. The printable worksheets can be printed out for as many of your kids as needed and you can even reprint their favorites to do more than once.
  • Likable characters. My kids enjoyed the mix of puppets and real people. The kids spoke clearly and didn’t seem overly scripted or fake. The puppets entertained while educating.
  • Immersion method. Speekee drops you right into the situations with Spanish speakers all around. There is the option of English subtitles which can be beneficial to some kids.
  • Nice accent. The actors all spoke Spanish well with a very natural pronunciation. It was easy to understand them and imitate their words.
  • Enjoyable pace. Not too fast, like some other adult immersion programs I have seen. And, not too slow or mundane like some that don’t seem to really help kids learn to converse. Speekee has a good balance of real life conversation and repetition to help a child learn new words without getting bored in the process.

Some considerations . . .

  • More for young kids.While anyone from preschool through adulthood could benefit from using Speekee, in our home it was more appreciated by the younger group. My 9 year old was okay with it, but it was the biggest hit with my 7 and 5 year olds.
  • Spain Spanish. Most of us in the United States would come in contact with Latin American Spanish rather than Spain Spanish. The accent varies slightly and some words and expressions are a bit different. You could think of it as the difference between our English and British English. We can definitely communicate together, but there will be a few differences. Most of the differences in Spanish I don’t think would make a big difference at the beginner level.
  • Needs repetition. Spanish will never be learned overnight. Kids will not likely watch the videos and instantly remember all the new phrases and songs taught in it. However, my kids did not mind watching the same videos more than once to cement the new vocabulary in their minds.
  • Helpful if parent watches along. While I was kind of hoping I could play the video and then go work with the older students on something I found that my younger kids absorbed and interacted the most with me right there. For example, Speekee would say, “Y tu?” and expect the kids to repeat the previous phrase. My kids didn’t understand that and were just sitting watching. Of course, they still picked it up and sang the songs with gusto throughout the day, but for them to get the most out of the video it is best to watch along with them.

Learning another language cannot start too young, and Speekee can be a great tool in drawing and keeping the attention of children as they learn Spanish.

For more TOS Crew reviews on this product, check out theĀ TOS Crew blog.

Disclaimer: This product was provided to me free of charge through Speekee as part of my participation in The Old Schoolhouse Homeschool Crew. I received no additional compensation and the opinions expressed here come from my personal experiences and sincere thoughts.

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  1. February 7th, 2011 at 04:56 | #1

    What a cool review! So comprehensive and informative for anyone interested in purchasing a Spanish language program for their young children. i am delighted you found the Spanish children on Speekee TV easy to understand. They are from a part of Spain where the local accent is strong (here, they miss off the S at the end of words) but all the Speekee children made sure to speak their best Spanish when the time came! Sending you and your family my best wishes from sunny Spain today. Jim, the one in Speekee (-;

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