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Platiquemos Spanish Course     def: 'let's speak'

Verbal fluency fast!

Natural training by speaking. Advance naturally by speaking and repeating so you can effectively communicate on your next trip to Mexico or Spain.

Over 50 hours of native audio practice and 8 perfect bound text books, so you can become fluent in all aspects of Spanish.

Foreign Service designed modern updates by Don Casteel - recommended by Lawrence Eagleburger, Secretary of State

  • Natural learning, quickly
  • Achieve effective communication
  • Reading and writing modules
  • Free teacher guide
  • Most comprehensive course
Platiquemos Book and CDs:
$49  Level 1 Book and CD
  
$275  Level 1-8 Book and CD
  

  Platiquemos on Amazon
Level 1 Book and CD
  
Level 1-8 Book and CD
  
Platiquemos

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Platiquemos Overview | Testimonial | Contents of Platiquemos
Schools Using Platiquemos | Platiquemos/Pimsleur Comparison | Spanish On The Go! iPod Package

Testimonials

Four-Star Guide Rating from About.com

From former Secretary of State of the United States Lawrence Eagleburger:
"I am a firm believer in the Foreign Service Institute's Spanish language program. I took the course early in my Foreign Service career, and thanks to the quality of the teaching methods used, was able to go from no competence in the language to an almost bilingual facility in only a few months. I know of no method of teaching a foreign language that even approaches the quality of the FSI program." - Lawrence S. Eagleburger, April 1998

4-Star Rating About.com Guide Review - Platiquemos Language Program: Basic Course Level 1
"The Platiquemos Language Program is designed for the student who is serious about learning the language, and those who take the time to go through its numerous exercises will be able to speak the language well...This course is modeled after the Foreign Service Institute Program and emphasizes verbal proficiency. The program materials suggest use as part of a course taught by a native speaker, although it has more resources than do most "do it yourself" courses." - Gerald Erichsen, About.com Guide Reviewer
  http://spanish.about.com/cs/productreviews/gr/platiquemos1.htm

Platiquemos Means Let's Talk

Platiquemos was originally created to train Foreign Service officers and other U.S. government agents involved in foreign affairs who need to learn to speak Spanish. The course has now been reformatted and adapted to make it easy to use and applicable a wide audience.

The course consists of eight levels. Each level includes approximately 175 pages of text and 6 to 8 audio CDs.

Method Of Teaching

The Platiquemos method is known as "guided imitation." The goal is to teach students to speak easily, fluently, and with very little accent, and to do this without conscious effort—just as one learns to speak one's native language. There are two important aspects of the "guided imitation" method. The first is "overlearning"—learning a relatively small body of material so well that it requires very little effort to produce it. The second is learning to imitate the sounds, sequences, and patterns of Spanish—at the tempo at which it is naturally spoken.

The Format

The first two units focus on pronunciation. The following units consist of a basic dialogue with a few pertinent notes, drills and grammar, conversation, and (beginning with Unit 16) selected readings.

Pronunciation

Pronunciation is the basis of all real fluency. Correct pronunciation safely relegated to habit leaves one's full attention available for other challenges of learning a language.

Basic Dialogues

The basic dialogues are the core of each unit. These dialogues present real situations students are likely to encounter, and teach the vocabulary and sentences they are most likely to need. New vocabulary is introduced in the basic dialogues. The student should learn both the literal meaning of each new word or phrase, since each will reappear many times throughout the course. Notes will suggest regional differences in both the language and the culture that will be encountered in various areas of Latin America and Spain.

Drills and Grammar

If the words and phrases learned in the basic dialogues are the themes, the drills provide variations on those themes. There are four kinds of drills in each unit (three before Unit 6). Of these, two are designed to systematically vary selected basic sentences within the structure the student has already learned. A further two provide a systematic coverage of important patterns.

The drill begins with a listing of basic sentences (and a few new sentences when necessary) that illustrate the grammar point to be drilled. This is followed by the various drills and a more detailed discussion of the pattern. These drills are mainly exercises in substitutions, responses, and translations, and highlight the grammar points covered. They are devised as oral answers to oral stimuli and are meant to be easily and rapidly answered. If a student finds a particular drill to be hard, the difficulty probably arises out of inadequately mastering the dialogues and earlier drills.

Conversation

The conversation section of each unit is designed to help bridge the gap between the more-or-less mechanical stimulus-response activity of the drills and the skill of free conversation, which is the ultimate aim of the course. These recombination monologues and dialogues extend the abilities of the student into ever more natural situations. The narrative is an anecdotal description of an event or situation that is then recast as a directed dialogue in which the instructor acts as a prompter for the student, who take the parts of an actor. The prompter gradually withdraws so that, in the end, the conversation is carried on freely.

Selected Readings

Beginning with Unit 16, reading materials are introduced. Up through Unit 30, the readings tell a continuing story and expand on matters of interest hinted at in the basic dialogues. These readings require no new vocabulary except for easy and obvious cognate words that can readily be guessed. From Unit 31 through Unit 55, the readings are much longer and introduce a considerable number of new words. This vocabulary is introduced through basic sentences that summarize the content of the following reading. The readings are designed to provide information of interest and value about Spanish culture, and to provide insight into the practical problems an American is likely to encounter in adjusting to life in a Spanish-speaking country.

Schools Using Platiquemos

Schools in the United States

Denver, Colorado
Charlotte, North Carolina
Houston/Galveston, Texas

Schools in Mexico

Casa Xelajú Language School - Quetzaltenango
The Cuernavaca Language School - Cuernavaca
Tlatoani Language School - Buenavista de Cuellar
OLE Spanish Language School - Querétaro

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