Learning Well with My French Coach by Ubisoft
I never imagined being able to retain so many words in French in so little time. Well, I have found the best tool for learning a foreign language, and in my case, for learning French. It is extremely easy to use. It’s called “My French Coach,” made by Ubisoft for the Nintendo DS.
There are eight varieties to choose from in this collection of methods of learning a language:
1) Multiple Choice, in which one chooses the right word English word that matches the French word.
2) Hit-a-Word; this is my favorite. This is where on feels like a second-grader knowing that one is actually dealing with sophisticated words. In this one, little gophers stick their heads out and wait for you to hit them with your Nintendo DS pen. Below each gopher is the right word or the wrong word. You are asked to recognize the French word equivalent to the English word you are asked to find. This is a lot of fun!
3) There is also Word Search, for people like me, who love to find words in word puzzles!
4) Flash Cards: hear a French word and pick the right English meaning, that simple!
5) Memory Choice: Pick from a spread of a deck of cards the matching names and translate them.
6) Bridge Builder: put the pieces together of a bridge by putting together parts to a sentence. If you fail, your bridge collapses, and you try again. Trial after trial you will naturally remember how the sentence goes in the right order because as soon as a bridge collapses, you are shown the right order of the sentence.
7) Spellstastic: This was the most challenging of the game choices for me, as you are presented with a word, and you then must spell each one letter until you get the right word. It should be easy, but that depends on your spelling abilities as time passes.
8) Fill-in The Blanks: You are presented a verb, which you must type in the right conjugation for the personal pronoun specified. For example, “Abandonner” is given to you as the verb, and the pronoun, “je” is also given, you must then type on the typewriter on the screen, “Abandonne,” which is the right conjugation for the pronoun “je.” If you don’t know, then below the typewriter is the conjugation for the entire verb, and you get to click and view the entire conjugation and get back to your game.
The graduation categories go from Kindergarten all the way to High School. I started in Kindergarten and have worked my way to the later part of the 4th grade. I’m very happy to have learned so many words, and to be familiarized with the right pronunciation.
Let me also mention the Dictionary tool and the Learning tool. The Dictionary is great! It is a list of English words from A-Z and when you click on these, you hear the right translation, and you see both the English and French words on the screen. This is very useful. The Learning tool contains 50 French geographical places and important dates useful in your future French civilization class and for your future trip to France. You will know the Arc of Honor and you will remember why Joan of Arc is important in France. You will know the most important time periods in French history.
This is the most complete game out there for any serious French student! Also, Ubisoft makes a companion My Spanish Coach game for the Nintendo DS which is equally as impressive. Overall score: 10 out of 10!
[Editor’s Note: Ms. Hernandez is majoring in French and Paralegal Studies at Los Angeles City College and Pasadena City College. She has spent the last several years as President of the French Club at school. She emigrated to the United States from El Salvador and is fluent in 3 languages. She is also an accomplished artist.]
– Dolores “Lolly” Hernandez, Staff Writer, Phoenix Genesis
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