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Language Institute of Georgia



Learn Spanish or German via Graded Readers

Thank you for visiting our homepage. We are a well established language school in Atlanta that offers Spanish and German classes using Graded Reader Method. Our class size is between 2 - 6 students. We are conveniently located across Lenox Mall and Marta Station. We have been delivering solid results for past 12 years.

CLASS STRUCTURE AND PRICING

Each course consists of 15 hours of classroom instruction. Class meets once a week for two and a half hours for six weeks. The price of each course is $250.00. Please check our schedule section for start dates.

FOCUS ON UNDERSTANDING
Adults speak at a rate of hundred words per minute. A thirty minute conversation would involve an exchange of 3000 words. Assuming each sentence to be six words long, we are talking here about exchange of 500 sentences. Of these 500 sentences, you will have to build 250 sentences and understand 250 sentences. For both of this to happen you need to have a very good understanding of the language.

Not understanding a language well enough is the most common cause of not being able to speak it. There is always a barrier preventing the language from entering in your memory (your mind can only retain what it understands). If little goes in, little comes out. In other words you can not speak a language that you do not understand.

This is the reason that we focus on developing a good overall understanding of the language and building a strong vocabulary in our basic Spanish class.

In a typical introductory Spanish class the focus is on greetings, introductions, ordering food etc. You can get a $5.00 phrase book and be better off. Our classes focus on overall understanding so that you can build your own sentences and carry on sustainable conversations.
 
WHAT MAKES GRADED READER A VERY EFFECTIVE METHOD OF LEARNING A FOREIGN LANGUAGE

Graded Readers provide you a lot of reinforcements. You have to see a word multiple times before it is retained permanently.  After going through a few Graded Readers you become a literate in Spanish. You are far more likely to speak a language that you know.

It can take years of formal Spanish courses, before you can read a standard text written in Spanish with comprehension. Graded Readers can get you there in less than six months.

HOW GRADED READERS CAN MAKE YOU A FLUENT SPEAKER

When you speak, your mind supplies you with wide variety of sentences. How well it can do it, depends how much language has been fed into it. If you are an adult living in a country where Spanish is not spoken, you need a lot of reading and listening in the target language before you can speak. In order to read and listen you need to have a good understanding of the language. Graded Reader Method is the fastest way of developing this understanding. In less than six months you will find yourself reading and listening with comprehension the Spanish language as used in the real world. 

I WANT TO SPEAK, WHY SHOULD I WASTE MY TIME LEARNING TO READ ?

If as an adult you can not read, it implies that you do not recognize the language. You are not very likely to speak a language that you don't even recognize.

The first stage in the language learning is recognition. Then retention via reinforcements. Then comes the speaking part. 

LIMITATIONs OF SPEAKING PRACTICE
Your speaking practice depends on how much you know. If your knowledge of the language is limited, your speaking practice will be limited as well. What you can recall in speaking practice, you can also recall in a real conversation. What interrupts your conversation is what you don't know or can not recall. If you are a beginner or an intermediate student, you should focus on expanding your vocabulary. That is far more important than repeating a few phrases.

"Communicative Approach" as touted by the academia as the best way of learning a foreign language has not produced any tangible results so far.  
LEARNING A FOREIGN LANGUAGE IS A MULTI-LAYER PROCESS
The first layer is a good overall understanding of the language. The second layer is retention via reinforcements. Once you have gone through these two stages, recalling or speaking would not be a problem.

Many language experts will tell you that speaking is the best way of learning a foreign language. Many Spanish teachers themselves have never learned Spanish as an adult.  They will frequently advise their students to put the cart before the horse. Click on the link below for more on this.

YOUR MIND AS A LINGUISTIC DATABASE

When you speak, you recall words and structure from your memory. How well you can recall depends how well you have stored them in your memory.  Reading is the best way of storing these words and structures in your memory. 

You do not learn a language by speaking it. You speak when you have learned it well enough to speak. 

WHY CLASSES FOCUSING ON SPEAKING PRACTICE ARE NOT GOOD FOR BEGINNERS

Many beginners sign up for a class that focuses on "conversational practice". If you pay $20.00 an hour for this class and share the class with five other people, you in fact are paying $120.00 an hour for your practice time. Plus you have to put up with listening to the Spanish of other beginners. You are far better off hiring a private tutor as a conversational partner for a lot less. Or you can find a conversational partner and force yourself to speak for free.

Secondly the failure rate of these classes is very high. You can repeat a few phrases in the class.  This aimless reproduction of the language rarely leads to long term retention. You can speak out an entire dictionary in two days. But that does not mean that you can use those spoken out words in a real conversation. You need a meaningful interaction with the language in order to retain it permanently. Reading in the target language can provide you with this interaction.

Once the administrators of the language schools have signed you up, you are at the mercy of a language teachers who would apply "Communicative Approach" towards teaching a foreign language. More often than not these teachers themselves have never learned the language they are teaching as an adult.  Students think that if a "qualified" teacher is saying that speaking is the best way of learning a language, then it must be right. The reality is that if you can not build a wide variety of sentences fast enough, you can not speak. If you can not speak, you can not practice speaking either. For this you need to train your mind. We can help you there.

HOW LONG IT WILL TAKE ME TO BECOME A FLUENT SPEAKER

Once you complete our set of four courses in about six months, you will have a very good overall understanding of the language. If you then go through 10 to 15 graded readers, which you can do in three to six months, you will have enough reinforcements to enable you to carry on a sustained conversation. Graded Readers come with CDs. Listening to what you understand will help you greatly with retention and pronunciation. Speaking is all about recalling which depends on retention.

LOGICAL ANALYSIS OF TOTAL IMMERSION
The first step in learning a foreign language is to internalize commonly used words and structures. It is quite obvious that when you see a structure in a foreign language, you will have questions and you will need explanations. Things can only be explained to you in a language that you understand. Things can not be explained to you in a language that you have not learned yet. 

The reason Total Immersion is used is that a language teacher can not speak the different languages of his or her students. The only choice he or she has is to use  his or her own. Being immersed in a language that you do not understand is not very helpful. 
GRADED READER VERSUS A TYPICAL LANGUAGE LEARNING TEXT
A typical college language learning text would have isolated bits and pieces of the language which makes testing and grading easier. In a Graded Reader you see words and structures in their proper context which results in improved retention. 

A college textbook costs between $200 to $300 dollars. Millions of students take language courses to fulfill their degree or diploma requirements. This pumps billions of dollars into an industry which is very powerful and has a say in how languages should be taught in our campuses.

In the world of academia a good professor is not the one who teaches a language properly, but the one who brings more money into the school in form of grants. That is where the focus is. Currently there are forty different theories of language learning. Each theory supports numerous "studies". These studies get the taxpayers money rolling into the universities. 

 Modern Academia has not produced any tangible results as far as language learning is concerned. Vast majority of language learners fail to learn a foreign language. It is always easier  to blame the students for this failure. Think thoroughly before signing up for a language class. Trust what makes sense. We are living in an era where whatever information we get has some vested interest behind it. 
LEARNING BY EXAMPLES

 Each sentence that you read is an example of how a sentence should be built. Reading provides you an unlimited supply of these examples. The more you go through these examples, the better you will get at building your own sentences and thus speak. If you are a total beginner, we can teach you how to read in Spanish with comprehension in less than six months.

WHAT ARE GRADED READERS

Graded Readers are complete stories written for all level of language learners. We use the series Leer en Español, which is published by University of Salamanca, Spain. They are available in six levels. In our basic Spanish class we use the level 1 graded reader Soñar un Crimen. Its a 22 page story and is written with 400 commonly used words. Each word is used repeatedly in different context for improved retention. 

GOLDEN RULE OF LEARNING A FOREIGN LANGUAGE

You have to be fluent in understanding before you can be fluent in speaking.

POLICY ON MISSED CLASSES

 If you miss two classes in a six weeks period, you can make up for it by sitting in other classes.

HOW DO I SIGN UP 

 You can go to the schedule section and choose a class which corresponds to a start date and sign up from there.

TRY OUR SAMPLE SPANISH CLASS 

Our one hour sample Spanish class will give you an idea of how Graded Reader Method works. It costs $15.00. Check our schedule section for the date and timings.

BEST LANGUAGE CLASSES. CBS ATLANTA

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USING GRADED READERS

Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

Language Institute of Georgia
3355 Lenox Rd Suite 750
 Atlanta, Georgia 30326.
404-520-8754

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