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Posts from the ‘Languages Young Learners-TEEN’ Category

English Attack! Partners with Prodirekt for Language Learning Innovation Across Balkans and Serbia

Media and education group PRODIREKT, with its regional communication network Verbalisti, will be responsible for rolling out innovative online entertainment-based approach to English-language learners in seven markets

Paris, France – June 6, 2012 – Entertainment Learning, the European leading education-via-entertainment company, announced its partnership with PRODIREKT LLC (www.prodirektgroup.com) today for the launch, marketing and business development of its flagship language learning service, English Attack!, (www.english-attack.com) in Serbia, Macedonia, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Croatia as well as in Bulgaria.

“Our innovative media and entertainment-based approach to learning English was designed to be as accessible and affordable as possible, so our policy is to work with partners not just in the world’s main markets for English learning, but everywhere. In Southeast Europe, we have been delighted to find a regional partner PRODIREKT, who, with its fast growing communication network Verbalisti, offers innovation, market knowledge, skills, credibility and marketing platforms not only in the area of language education, but in media, travel, and youth marketing as well. We are confident that they will be very successful in introducing English Attack! to the millions of learners of English in these rapidly developing markets,” said Paul Maglione, co-founder of Entertainment Learning.

Dejan Trpkovic, managing director, PRODIREKT, added: “The partnership with Entertainment Learning ideally complements our business strategy, while their English Attack! will expand our portfolio of experience-based educational programs. As part of our commitment to motivate, educate and keep the professionals in Southeast Europe in tune with the latest trends in communication and personal development, our network Verbalisti has been supporting major cultural events, regional music and film festivals, as well as conducting interviews with successful business people and celebrities. English Attack! is a valuable addition to our content that stands out for its originality, high quality and is aimed at learning through experience and entertainment.

The full impact of the Internet revolution has yet to be seen in the field of education, and in particular most online language-learning sites are still based on exercises and structures typical of early 20th-century pedagogy, far removed from the interests and motivations of today’s learners. English Attack! aims to propel language learning into the 21st century with an innovative, social approach.

English Attack! allows learners of English to improve their language skills contextually with video clips from blockbuster movies, hit TV series, music videos and television news reports; online games ; and thematic visual dictionaries. They can also practice their developing English language skills within the site’s global social network of learners of English. Users have a choice between an English-language interface and a version with navigation, help texts, tutorials, a dictionary, and other resources in 19 other languages, including Spanish, allowing easier access to the site’s unique pedagogical approach.

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About Entertainment Learning/English Attack!:

Entertainment Learning was founded in 2009, based on the vision of transforming education via web 2.0 principles and the power of online entertainment. It is represented by Marketing Partners in 12 countries covering 15 markets, with offices in Paris, Dusseldorf, Warsaw, Prague, Istanbul, Barcelona, Chicago, Mexico City, Sao Paulo, Bogota, Seoul and Bangkok.

Its first online service, English Attack!, was developed in partnership with a range of English-teaching professionals, and emerged from large-scale worldwide Beta-testing in July 2011. English Attack delivers a truly innovative approach to language learning, based on cognitive neuroscience and the use of learning concepts derived from the latest language learning pedagogy as well as principles based on learning games.

The service is available to both consumers and, via a multi-user license, to schools, language institutes, universities and companies.

English Attack! is available in 20  languages. These include French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, Romanian, Polish, Turkish, Chinese, Japanese, Hindi, and Korean, allowing easier beginner-level access to the site’s unique pedagogical approach.

About PRODIREKT LLC and Communication Network Verbalisti (Verbalists)

PRODIREKT provides strategic management and executive education and training in the Balkan region. PRODIREKT’s innovative solutions for corporate management, marketing and international business communication offer a bridge between strategy and education, while its business group, with the communication network Verbalisti, dedicated to language studies, professional training, translation and interpreting services, helps young professionals and corporate clients achieve their objectives in international communication.

The communication and language network Verbalisti has been created for language lovers and all those wishing to improve their communication skills. Furthermore, Verbalisti are the answer to the growing demand for the regional standardization in foreign language studies. Verbalists offer quality language courses for students of all ages and levels according to their various budget needs.

Young Learners Language Education Tops Family Budget Priorities, Shows the Verbalisti Survey in Serbia, Montenegro, Croatia and Bosnia

Belgrade, Serbia – March 6, 2012 – PRODIREKT and its language network Verbalisti today announced the results of the poll designed to discover how parents in the Balkans feel about the language education of their children. The visitors of the Verbalisti Facebook page were asked “How important is it for your children to learn a foreign language in the native speaking country?”. The survey was conducted in four countries – Serbia, Croatia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina, during two time intervals – from 21st November to 21st December 2011, and from January 6 to February 6, 2012, and it generated enormous interest among the Verbalisti network fans and other Facebook members alike. The poll reached 247,757 people, while 1,566 participants cast their vote, with 1,226 of them saying that they would send their children to learn a foreign language in a native speaking country, regardless of the family budget constraints.

Verbalisti Poll: Young Learners Language Education Tops Family Budget Priorities

The Verbalisti poll reached 247,757 people, while 1,566 participants cast their vote

The Prodirekt poll was inspired by the similar one Berlitz Corporation conducted in Japan, Germany, the USA, Mexico, China, Brazil, France, Poland and Italy earlier in 2011. The purpose of the Berlitz poll was to determine how parents of children between the ages of 4 and 17 perceive the importance of foreign language learning. Their key findings show that almost 90% expressed interest in foreign language learning for their children outside regular school hours. Countries with recent strong economic growth, such as China, Mexico and Brazil, showed especially high interest in language education abroad. The lowest interest was in developed countries such as USA, Japan, France and Germany.

“It was interesting to find out from the Berlitz poll how parents in those 9 countries feel about language education of their children, but it is also helpful to see how Berlitz findings relate to our poll conducted in part of Southeast Europe. Furthermore, we wanted to determine what the parents’ opinion about learning a foreign language at home and abroad was”, said Jasmina Saric, director of educational programs, Prodirekt.

Verbalisti (attending My London program) about to leave for LondonThe Prodirekt survey polled 1566 people from 4 countries: Serbia, Croatia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Participants were asked “How important is it for your children to learn a foreign language in the native speaking country?” There were 4 answer options:

a)    It’s extremely important and I will provide it for my child regardless of financial constraints in the family budget – voted by 78% (1,226 votes)

b)    It’s very important, and I’ll provide it for my child if the family budget allows it  – voted by 16% (246 votes)

c)     It’s not that important, a local language school is good enough – voted by 2% (34 votes)

d)    It’s not important at all – voted by 4% (51 votes)

The Facebook members can access the poll here.

The poll results clearly showed that parents in SEE regard foreign languages as extremely important part of their children’s education:

  • 96% of them would send their children to a private language school – 94% to a language school in a native country, plus additional 2% who maintained that a local language school was good enough for their children’s language education;
  • 78% of the poll partakers uphold that improving a language in the country where its spoken is so important that they will provide it for their children regardless of the financial constraints in a family budget
  • Only 5% maintains that learning a language abroad is not important – 2% believes a local language school will do the job, and 3% claims that language education abroad is not important at all.
Jasmina Saric, Director Educational Programs, PRODIREKT

Jasmina Saric: "With the economic crunch and high unemployment rate among young people, parents perceive their children's language competencies as a key factor in getting a job, or at least as a necessary requirement for further education options abroad"

Jasmina Saric from Prodirekt further commented on the poll results: “The prolonged and severe economic crisis apparently does not affect, at least declaratively, the parents’ willingness to spend on their children education. This makes perfect sense: with the economic crunch and high unemployment rate among young people, parents perceive their children’s language competencies as a key factor in getting a job, especially in the local offices of foreign companies, or at least as a necessary requirement for further education options abroad.”

This high percentage of parents in Southeast Europe who perceive foreign languages as key to their children’s success ties in with the analysis about the boom in the junior language market, published by Dan Thomas, of The Pie, an online publication for educators (Is the junior language market seeing a boom?”, January 12, 2012). In an ever more competitive job market parents recognize a second language – and having studied abroad – as a distinct advantage. The Pie analysis also shows that the demand is not only for English courses, but for other world languages as well.

Job opportunities have been shrinking with the global crisis and employers are becoming more selective; therefore, speaking English as a second language has become more important. The Verbalisti survey confirms the Pie findings, but also points out that in the developing economies the need for children language education is perceived as a must, and that parents are willing to continue spending on their children’s education abroad even in the harsh economic times.

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About PRODIREKT LLC and Communication Network Verbalisti (Verbalists)
PRODIREKT provides strategic management and executive education and training in the Balkan region. PRODIREKT’s innovative solutions for corporate management, marketing and international business communication offer a bridge between strategy and education, while its business group and social network Verbalisti, dedicated to language studies and professional training, helps young professionals and business people achieve their objectives in international communication.

The communication and language network Verbalisti has been created for language lovers and all those wishing to improve their communication skills. Furthermore, Verbalisti are the answer to the growing demand for the regional standardization in foreign language studies. Verbalists offer quality language courses for students of all ages and levels according to their various budget needs.

PRODIREKT and Entertainment Learning Partner to Help Learners in the Balkan Region to Improve their English

Belgrade, Serbia — February 3, 2012 — PRODIREKT LLC today said it will join forces with Paris based Entertainment Learning SAS to market its flagship language learning service, English Attack!, in the Balkans. The exclusive regional partnership agreement is expected to be announced shortly.
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English Attack! and Prodirekt together in improving English language education in SEE

“Prodirekt” and “Entertainment Learning” partner to help learners in the Balkan region to improve their English

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Paul Maglione, co-founder of Entertainment Learning said: “We interviewed many potential partners for the Balkan region, and finally found what we were looking for in PRODIREKT LLC. We are confident that they have expertise and experience to create the ideal marketing and communications programs and commercial initiatives, as well as the local relationships with teachers, schools, universities, language institutes, and companies, to make English Attack! an integral part of PRODIREKT’s education offering and  an important player in the growing and dynamic English language-learning industry here in the Balkan region.

PRODIREKT expects to launch the first local language versions of English Attack! in April 2012, giving English language learners in the Balkan region a choice between an English-language interface for the innovative online service; and a version with navigation, help texts, tutorials, a dictionary, and other resources in local languages, and allowing easier access to the site’s unique pedagogical approach by early-stage learners of English.

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About Entertainment Learning
Entertainment Learning was founded by the well-known specialists in the media and entertainment industries, Paul Maglione and Frederic Tibout, who see a huge potential in the power of digital entertainment applied to a radically different way of helping people learn languages. English Attack! is the first site developed and published by Entertainment Learning.

Launched at the end of June 2011, English Attack! has attracted its 100,000th registered user and opened its 12th regional sales and marketing office. English Attack! is a global site created to help learners around the world improve their English, and is already available with a user interface in 13 languages. English Attack! features a combination of video clips, thematic visual dictionaries and games; a motivational reward-rich ecosystem; and social networking functionality allowing learners to use what they learn from the site.

Thanks to an innovative pedagogical approach combining elements of online entertainment, online social networks, and “gamification,” English Attack! (www.english-attack.com) is attracting an ever-increasing number of the “digital native” learners of English aged 13 to 35 for which it was designed.

English Attack! has been recognized on the European high tech scene, with finalist status at the TechCrunch (Paris), The Next Web (Amsterdam), and Plugg (Brussels) competitions, and it was a winner of the SeedCamp Paris event.

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About PRODIREKT LLC and Communication Network Verbalisti (Verbalists)
PRODIREKT provides strategic management and executive education and training in the Balkan region. PRODIREKT’s innovative solutions for corporate management, marketing and international business communication offer a bridge between strategy and education, while its business group and social network Verbalisti, dedicated to language studies and professional training, helps young professionals and business people achieve their objectives in international communication.

The communication and language network Verbalisti has been created for language lovers and all those wishing to improve their communication skills. Furthermore, Verbalisti are the answer to the growing demand for the regional standardization in foreign language studies. Verbalists offer quality language courses for students of all ages and levels according to their various budget needs.

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The Junior Language Market is Seeing a Boom

Dan Thomas, in his article for The Pie, an online publication for educators, looks at the factors behind the growth of the junior language market. Major players in language education have seen sustained, sometimes rapid, growth in recruitment over the last few years; opening new campuses and increasing the diversification of nationalities on their courses.

Driving the phenomenon is an ever more competitive job market in which having a second language – and having studied abroad – gives young people a distinct advantage. For this reason, say educators, during a period of economic austerity in many language learning markets, parents are willing to continue spending on their children’s education while making savings on their own.

It appears the demand is not only for English courses. In Europe, Italy’s Linguaviva says it sees around 5% growth each year for its Italian classes, while Germany’s DID says interest from students wanting to learn German in Berlin has increased.

Another success story is Azurlingua in the South of France, which has expanded from 20-30 students to 2,500 students in the last 10 years. Director, Jean Luc Librati, says the French market is coming to maturity, with junior courses becoming an educational rite of passage for language learners and being taken more seriously.

Verbalisti young learners leaving for Malta

Verbalisti young learners leaving for Malta

“Let’s say that 10 years ago, it was more like ‘let’s have fun and at the same time learn French’. Now it’s more ‘let’s learn French and at the same time we’ll have fun’,” says Libreti.

Students on Azurlingua’s courses now take exams recognised not only by the French Government, but also the Common European Framework of Reference for languages which enables qualifications to be recognised across European borders.

“This new way to recognise language ability is becoming better and better known,” says Libreti. “It is also proof that the market is reaching a more professional level.”

While the need for a second language is certainly the fuel for growth, other factors are catalysts. One such is visa conditions. As junior courses are generally short haul and rarely year round, students can usually enter a country far more simply than adults, often on a tourist visa.

Increased awareness of junior products is also helping providers. The relationships an educator builds with his agents around the world helps drive “word of mouth” marketing. Consumers have also changed their attitudes. Teachers and students are more knowledgeable about the courses available and parents are more trusting and willing to allow their children to travel.

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Macedonian Language Travel Students and the Fourth Verbalisti July Group Leaving for London (VIDEO)

My Language Experience

The Fourth Group of Verbalisti prior to leaving for London at the Belgrade Airport, 31 July 2011

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