Homeschool Spanish Program {Speekee TV Review}

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I’ve always loved languages.   I think it comes from being bilingual as a little kid {which I no longer am, by the way}.

Over the years, people have told me that I probably still have the Korean language buried in my brain somewhere.  I haven’t found that to be true, but I’ve always wondered if I had to get around Korea for a month and was immersed in the language and the culture, if MAYBE I would be able to force my brain to pick it up again!

Speekee TV is a Spanish immersion program that works along those lines – though, fortunately for us, there is much more enunciation than you would probably get if you were dropped into a Spanish speaking community and left to fend for yourself!

The videos are completely in Spanish with English subtitles.  Speekee (this fellow below) and his friends teach Spanish through catchy songs and conversations.   His friends include a man named Jim, two puppets named Dino and Lupi, and a handful of Spanish-speaking kids.

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My kids love watching the Speekee videos!  With the online subscription (DVDs are also available), you log in to the website and you can select the videos that you want to watch.  My husband’s computer is networked to our flat-screen TV, so I’m able to play the videos right on the TV and the kids and I can easily watch them together.

The very first video is about 14 minutes long, and the others seem to range closer to 20 minutes.  It doesn’t feel like you’re sitting there for 20 minutes at a time, though.  They move things along pretty well and keep the kids engaged.

I find myself trying to translate as they sing/speak for the kids.  It *SEEMS* to be paying off….as I’m doing it, my kiddos will translate the things that they know.

My 3-year-old especially liked the part in the el parque video (the park) where they were teaching up (arriba) and down (abajo).  The child would go down the slide and the narrator would say abajo, then they would show them going up it (in reverse) and say arriba.  She would giggle every time they had the child go in reverse up the slide.   🙂

{as an aside, I always thought that “arriba” meant “quick” or “fast” when Speedy Gonzalez used to say it in the Bugs Bunny Cartoons!)

So far, her favorite video overall is “the serving one”, as she calls it {“El café”}.  The kids are in a café, and each of them order what they would like to drink {a glass of water, orange juice, milk}.

Both kids have said that they are not fond of the puppets (Dino and Lupi), but my littlest one understands that when they say “Te quiero” and hug at the end of their skit that they’re saying “I love you”.  There’s progress for you ~ woohoo!

I’m really impressed with how the creators of these videos found ways to work in pictures of the items that they’re talking about, gestures, facial expressions and other little details to illustrate what is being said ~ this is especially helpful for the pre-readers!

For example, in one scene two kids are at a table with several different colored straws in front of them.  One child names a color, and the second one picks up the straw of that color.  When I was watching through the scene again I noticed that they were also changing the background color of the screen behind the kids to match the color being said.

I also like that you can hear the native speakers saying the words/phrases and the inflection that they use.  My initial thought is that it would be great to have the songs {and even the conversations} on a CD so we could listen to them in the car, but they may lose something in not being able to see the expressions and the other great visuals of the videos.

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Also available for free with your subscription is a Fast Track program.

From the website:

Speekee FastTrack is a 40 week plan that maximises every child’s Spanish learning. Every week we’ve suggested 4 activities for you, with corresponding video clips, worksheets and other downloads. Taking just a few minutes, each activity accelerates understanding and use of Spanish.

The Fast Track program includes free downloadable flash cards and worksheets. You receive an email detailing crafts/projects that you can do with that particular week’s lesson to help enhance it.

I did sign up for the Fast Track emails, but we haven’t been doing the projects (yet).  One thing that I notice is that they don’t have you trying to rush through one video per week.  You work on the same one over a series of weeks and pull out different parts of it to focus on.

What I need to do going forward:

As I’m writing this, I’m realizing that we’ve been spending most of our time on comprehension, but not on repetition.  I need to go through the Fast Track lessons and find ways to get the kiddos to repeat the words more as they hear them.

You can try a free Speekee TV subscription for two weeks!  After that, it costs $7.50 a month or $60 for 1 year.   This program is designed for children ages 2-10.

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Disclaimer: I received a 6 month subscription to Speekee TV in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own. No monetary compensation was received.

Comments

  1. Hola Stephanie, This is Jim from Speekee checking in to say a big GRACIAS for your review. Much appreciated!

    • MOMKABOODLE says:

      Hola, Jim! Thanks so much for taking the time to read my review, and thank you for creating such a great program. We're loving Speekee!

  2. Thanks for that! It seems that the video is very interesting. My husband has a spanish blood and I as well, but we do both speak english since we are staying here in the US for over 20 years now, almost our entire life and the kids are also brought up with english language and this video will surely be a good way for them to revive their spanish roots. LOL! I will surely get a subscription for speekee tv!