Ideas on How to Use the Língua da Gente (and all of the Brazilpod) Materials
Antes de mais nada (‘First off’, literally “before more of nothing”) thanks for coming to our Língua da Gente site. This is just one of the many options that is part of our University of Texas BrazilPod, all designed as ancillary materials to help assist in your learning of Portuguese. This site, always a free and open resource, is for independent learners, and those who are part of an official course, for students, and for teachers. Given that we have hundreds of lesson options, users sometimes are unsure of how to use the materials. Here we provide some suggestions.
Everything at Língua da Gente is designed to be a stand-alone lesson. That is to say, all lessons can be reviewed in any order, independent from any other lesson, separate from any textbook, not limited to any course, and not bound to any specific level. Feel free to mix and match these lessons to fit your own needs. At the same time, everything at Língua da Gente can easily be incorporated into specific lessons, textbooks, courses and levels.
- General Philosophy Behind Each Lesson
Each lesson has a dialog that presents a slice of daily life. The dialogs were designed to show how people really talk in a given situation. Each lesson begins with an introduction to the topic, followed by three repetitions of the dialog. Listen to determine what parts you may or may not understand, but don’t worry about the details. Next, we provide a rough English translation of the dialog, not enough to translate each word, but enough to get the gist of the meaning. Then we provide a line-by-line analysis that includes observations regarding grammar, usage, pronunciation or some cultural insight. And finally we conclude with three more repetitions of the dialog.
Users can subscribe to both the full lessons and to just the dialogs. We recommend that you subscribe to both. Most users listen to the full lessons a couple of times, to absorb the information. But the separate dialogs themselves can be listened to over and over again, dozens of times, and over extended periods of time. We can almost guarantee, parts of the dialogs that seem unintelligible, over time become intelligible, and more importantly become part of the learners active vocabulary and usage. We recommend that users subscribe to all of the dialogs, make a playlist, and repeat them over and over again.
- For Learners of Portuguese who are Using the Textbook ‘Ponto de Encontro’
Ponto de Encontro is one of the most commonly used Portuguese Language textbooks in the United States. Our Língua da Gente materials are not affiliated with Ponto de Encontro in any official capacity. However, because Ponto de Encontro is so popular, we provide a chapter and grammar topic concordance to correlate all Língua da Gente lessons.
- Click on the Library to view the pop-up menu of Ponto de Encontro chapters and grammar topics. From there you can sort through the Língua da Gente episodes to find out which ones correlate. For example, if you are on Chapter 3 of Ponto de Encontro “Horas de Lazer”, the sort will lead you to such lessons as Beg. 06 Going to the Movies.
- We recommend that teachers consider assigning specific Língua da Gente lessons as homework assignments, this to reinforce the chapter objectives and to provide a context for the topics that are presented in the textbook.
3. Task-Based Learning Objectives
A common approach in language learning nowadays is to give students assignments that are designed to demonstrate the ability to perform a given task. The philosophy behind this is to move away from the limited grammar-only focus and rote memorization to a more global focus on real communication. We recommend the use of “Can-Do Statements” as a way of providing students with task-based assignments. What follows are lists of Can-Do Statements, subdivided by general proficiency levels (beginning, elementary, intermediate). As learners prepare to “pass-off” or “perform” these demonstration tasks, we provide a list of related lessons from Língua da Gente, Tá Falado, Conversa Brasileira, and Portuguese Communication Exercises. All of our BrazilPod materials become resources to help students prepare for the task. This methodology can be applied in both organized courses as well as for independent learners.
The following Google Docs provide a list of 12 Can-Do Statement tasks, together with the BrazilPod links:
We do thank you again for using our BrazilPod materials, and specifically Língua da Gente. As you implement these materials into your own program of study, we would love to hear from you, gather your ideas, and share your creative projects with others. Um forte abraço,
Prof. Orlando R. Kelm