Olivita Oink's Bilingual Barnyard is a full semester
of Spanish instruction for elementary aged children. There are
4 DVDs and a paperback workbook to go with the DVDs. There are
40 lessons on the DVDs, and each one is intended to be used twice
for the sake of the repetition.
Olivita Oink, as you can probably figure out for yourself, is
a cartoon pig that the lessons revolve around. A native speaking
teacher from Colombia is the teacher on the DVDs. She uses a classroom
setting and shows the words and phrases and asks the students to
repeat what she says. I especially like the approach this course
uses because this is not an English-speaking teacher whose second
language is Spanish. This is a Spanish-speaking teacher whose second
language is English. Her accent is genuine. When I was in school,
I took several years of Spanish, and one summer I took an immersion
course at Kansas University for six weeks. All the teachers were
Spanish-speaking instructors from other countries. We did nothing
but speak Spanish all day and all evening and all weekend long.
Because the teachers were native speakers, we actually learned
more, and our pronunciation improved exponentially.
This is a very comprehensive and well-prepared course. I love
the fact that it provides a workbook to go along with the DVDs
and the fact that a teacher is holding regular classroom sessions
on the DVD. There are of course plenty of visuals and even some
changes of scenery, but it has a classroom feel. This will work
very well for me because I intend to use this program for both
my kindergarten student and my middle school student. As my kindergarten
student is just learning to read, she will only do the DVD portion
this year, but my other student will also do the accompanying worksheets.
I feel they will both do quite well, and neither will be bored
or overwhelmed with this course. I myself have found it interesting,
and I am looking forward to brushing up on my spelling and pronunciation
as we complete this course.
If you are looking for a full-semester Spanish course for your
homeschool student, this would be an excellent curriculum to choose.
The book and DVD set is $129.00. If you compare with other comparable
language curriculums, this is a very reasonable price. I would
purchase it myself at that price and be very satisfied with my