Do you know how to earn points through the MAP and redeem them for Mango swag? What about setting up a MARC record for Mango? Or how to filter and export usage statistics? To find out answers to all of these questions – and much more – be sure to register for our new Mango 101 training webinar. The purpose of this presentation is to help our existing clients make the most of their Mango account. By the time you’re done, you’ll be able to navigate the MAP like a pro, be a usage stats whiz, and have tons of fresh ideas on how to spread the word to your patrons. So if you haven’t had the chance to attend yet, please take a few minutes to sign up through one of the registration links below:
Did you know you can earn points on our “Mango Checklist” by adding a Mango logo or link to your library’s website? Prominently feature the link on your website and it’s sure to attract more attention than if it’s buried somewhere the user has to search for it. Of course, there’s a number of ways that libraries can do this. To provide some inspiration, we’re going to feature a few rockstar examples from our partner libraries:
Musser Public Library and the Terrebonne Parish Library System both featured Mango in their scrolling homepage slideshow. Not only does this approach provide a visual “pop” that grabs patrons’ attention, it also allows the library to feature different events and resources on a timely basis.
Boyd County Public Library featured Mango on its homepage in their “Library News” section. This approach not only increases awareness about the resource, but also provides patrons with the latest Mango news. In this case, BCPL shared info about our new Social Media Feature and how patrons can earn badges by learning with Mango. You can easily set up a News Section on your library’s website by linking the content to a blog or other RSS feed. Ideas for Mango updates can be pulled from our monthly newsletter, blog, or from informational materials posted on the MAP.
Another fantastic and effective way to feature Mango on your homepage is to use one of our eye-catching banners, like Fountaindale Public Library did on their site:
All you need to do is log in to the MAP, visit the “Free Downloads” section under the “Promote” tab, and select “Web Banners” to see all the options we have available. The banners come in all shapes and sizes, so you’re bound to find something that will work perfectly for your site! Then just link the banner directly to your Mango landing page, providing patrons with a quick and easy way to access the courses.
We’d like to say a big, big thank you to Musser Public Library, Terrebonne Parish Library System, Boyd County Public Library, Fountaindale Public Library, and all the other libraries that have created awesome features for Mango on their website. Keep up the good work!
If your library would like ideas or guidance on creating a Mango feature for your homepage, please reach out to your Account Rep. We’d be happy to help!
In the early morning hours at Bedford Public Library, you shouldn’t be surprised if you hear chimes of “un, deux, trois” echoing from the meeting room. In true Mango spirit, the staff decided to lead their morning exercises in French! But this is just the first of many signs you’ll notice at BPL that they’re a Mango library. Turn the corner, and you’ll see the beautiful Foreign Language display, complete with Mango signage and bookmarks:
Look up and you’ll see the Mango TV display, or to your side and you’ll see Mango featured in a digital picture frame:
In the computer lab, Mango is featured on the screensavers:
Come on the right day, and you may even experience a Mango party!
Best of all, the BPL staff are Mango advocates wherever they go – they even carry Mango cards with them! According to Linda Davis, Reference Assistant at BPL, these cards came in handy at a local eatery after her co-worker discovered that the restaurant staff wanted to improve their English. He handed out the cards and told them all about how they could access Mango for free at the library!
Bedford Public Library – we just want to say a big thank you, merci, and gracias for all your hard work and efforts! We’re really inspired by your creativity and enthusiasm to promote Mango. Keep on rocking!
Help your library patrons reach their goals! Learning a new language consistently tops resolution lists each January, but now it’s September and your patrons only have a few months left before the end of the year.
You and your patrons can like and follow Mango for daily motivation and ideas on how to make the language-learning journey even more fun. Download this poster to hang in your library and spread the word.
What’s in for your library? Well, increased usage means that Mango will be a more cost-effective resource for you. Not to mention, the prizes:
Each month, we’ll recognize the library with the best results based on user sessions. The winners will be entered in to a grand prize drawing at the end of the year for a $500 Mango party at their library and a slew of Mango prizes for library staff and patrons.
Spread the word: this is the year we learn a new language.
September is here, which means “back to school” season is in full swing. We’re delighted to say more and more college and university libraries are using Mango – some to supplement a smaller language program, others to assist ESL or study abroad students, and many simply because Mango is a resource with broad appeal. Mango benefits students, faculty, alumni, and campus organizations alike. Check out the video below to learn more.
Ready to get your school started? Click here to set up a free trial, sign up for an informational webinar, read case studies, and much more.
At the gym the other day, between the monotonous stomping of my feet on the treadmill, I overheard a woman speaking in heavily-accented English. She was asking her workout partner to show her how to correctly do a push-up. I listened to her for a few minutes, as she struggled to find the words to describe what she wanted to say. It made me reflect upon my own experiences as a study abroad student in Munich. I remember how frustrating it would be to run into situations where I couldn’t accurately express myself.
On one particular occasion, my inability to remember the verb “to pay” meant that I couldn’t tell the waiter that I had already paid my bill. I recall repeating over and over again: “ich habe schon…ich habe schon…” (“I already…”) But the word escaped me. I tried to motion a “paying” action with my hands, but it just confused the waiter even more. Finally, I remembered the verb and was able to complete my sentence, satisfying the waiter and setting him on his way.
Running into situations such as these occurred on almost a daily basis when I first moved to Munich. Things that should take moments to complete, often became stressful, drawn-out processes simply due to my inability to correctly express what I wanted to say. As a grown adult, it was extremely frustrating to have my vocabulary set back to the level of a child, particularly when I still needed to do “grown-up things” (like set up a cell phone or register with the city).
So suffice to say, I completely sympathized with the woman at my gym when I heard her struggling in broken English. But when I turned around and saw who she had been speaking to all along, I felt an even higher level of respect. The woman had been speaking with her husband. It was obvious that they shared the same mother tongue, so it would have been much easier for her to carry on in their native language. But the fact that she chose to instead practice her speaking skills and converse with him in English, made me beam with admiration.
I’m now married to German-American man, but I have to admit that our daily conversations in German are usually limited to short words and phrases. Rarely do we commit to conversing fully in German, simply because English is the more natural medium for both of us. My husband moved to the US when he was 10, so he speaks English as if it were his native tongue. Plus, we met before I even started studying German, so it’s become what we’re used to.
But I have to admit that seeing this courageous couple made me realize that there’s no excuse not to try. It also made me think of all the people living in the U.S. who struggle to learn English because they want to create a better life for themselves. I’m lucky that learning a foreign language has never been imperative for me – it’s always been a choice. A choice that nonetheless opens the door to many opportunities and experiences. So what excuse do I have not to practice more often? Better yet: why would I not want to?
What motivates you to study a foreign language? When things get tough, what “keeps you going?”
To join Mango Languages’ Language Resolution campaign, follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook or use the hashtag #LanguageResolution to join the conversation. Our goal is to make this the year that you commit to learning a foreign language by providing daily challenges, tips, and motivation. Together, we can do this.
We started our Language Resolution campaign with one goal in mind: to help you learn a language by 2013. We hear excuses all too often: “I wanted to learn a language this year, but couldn’t find the time to practice” or “I ran out of steam and lacked motivation.” This year, we’re not going to let that happen. Mango’s got your back – not to mention daily tips, challenges, and motivation to keep you on track. All you have to do is stay tuned to our pages on Facebook and Twitter.
Last week things got off to a strong start on Monday when we challenged our followers to write their grocery or shopping list in the language they were studying. On Tuesday, we followed this up with a vocab challenge focused on greetings and terms of gratitude. Translations of “thank you” and “goodbye” were shared in a handful of languages, including French, Arabic, Japanese and German. Plus, Philip E. shared his personal translation of those phrases into “Southern U.S. English,” as ‘obliged’ and ‘later’. Thanks for giving a mini-lesson to our Detroiter Mango crew, Philip!
Wednesday is all about motivation, so we shared a touching story from one of our patrons based at the Kent District Library in Michigan. Having been in a long-distance relationship for 6 years, she tried everything to learn Swedish without success – including Rosetta Stone. But after starting Mango, she experienced more improvement in a few days than she had done in years! Read her full story here.
We dedicate Thursday to a roundtable discussion of issues and challenges faced when learning a foreign language. Last week we focused on how to successfully learn vocabulary. Our followers had fantastic tips for tackling this challenge, including: using flashcards, playing video games, reading foreign signs or packaging, and creating associations with English words that have a similar sound. The one thing that everyone seemed to agree on is that repetition is key, no matter what method you use. We also agree with this point – which is why repetition of phrases and vocabulary is an important theme in Mango’s courses.
On Friday, we closed out the week with one final challenge for our followers: to “like” or “follow” a foreign company’s page on Facebook or Twitter. This is a great way to infuse foreign content into your feed! Haven’t had a chance to complete the challenge yet? Commit to doing it today! It only takes 5 minutes.
Ready to get things geared up again this week? We’ve got a week chock-full of fun challenges, motivating inspiration, and helpful tips/tricks ahead! Check out our Facebook and Twitter pages daily to keep updated. Remember, 2012 is the year. #LanguageResolution. Let’s do this together.
“I can’t afford to buy study materials”
“Between work and responsibilities at home, I just don’t have the time to study.”
“I can’t find a partner for speaking practice.”
Excuses. Trust us, we’ve heard them all. And they just don’t work with us. The truth is, if you really want to learn a language, you’ll find a way to do it. There’s actually many easy, simple and fun ways to infuse language-learning into your everyday routine – most of which cost little or nothing at all. To prove it, we put together a list of 20 suggestions to get you started.
1. Read a news article in a foreign language.
2. Write a status update or tweet in a foreign language.
3. Listen to the live feed of an international radio station online.
4. Sign up for an international pen pal and exchange emails on a regular basis.
5. Cook from a recipe that is written entirely in a foreign language.
6. Rent a foreign movie and watch it without the subtitles. If that’s too difficult, try turning on the closed captions so that you can see the lines written in the original language, rather than the translated version.
7. Download a trivia app for your smartphone that’s in the language you’d like to learn. Still a beginner? Try looking for a children’s version for simpler phrasing.
8. Next time you go to the store, practice writing your shopping list entirely in the language you are studying.
9. Visit a foreign restaurant and try ordering in the language.
10. Have a partner to study with? Try playing “I Spy,” “20 Questions,” or Scrabble in the language you’re studying.
11. In a relationship? Come up with some fun pet names for your significant other that are in a foreign language (like “Schatz” in German or “Chéri” in French). Up for a challenge? Practice writing an entire love letter.
12. Check out the foreign music charts, pick a couple songs, and see if you can understand the lyrics. Too difficult? Look up the lyrics online and you’ve got a great translation challenge!
13. Next time you need directions, look them up in a foreign language by going to an international version of the Google Maps site (for example: the German, French, or Spanish site). It’s a great way to learn vocabulary!
14. Join a foreign language Meetup in your area.
15. Finding foreign or international clubs or associations in your area is probably easier than you think. Think outside the box when you’re searching: schools, college campuses, and even churches or other religious organizations can be a great place to look for clubs.
16. What’s your favorite TV show? Chances are it either has a counterpart (like American Idol or Survivor) or a dubbed version in a foreign language. Try downloading episodes or look for clips online to watch. Alternatively, you could purchase a DVD set online – just be aware that you may need an international DVD player in order to watch it.
17. “Like” or “follow” a foreign company on Facebook or Twitter. This will infuse your newsfeed with foreign language content.
18. Looking for a fun way to practice vocabulary? Each day, pick a different topic to focus on (e.g. animals, food & drink, or family members) and see how many words you can list for that topic. Each time you make a list, try to list more words than the day before. If you want to take this challenge to the next level, see if you can come up with a word beginning with each letter of the alphabet.
19. Did you know that official Wikipedias have been created in 285 languages? So if you’re looking for seemingly endless content and articles to browse (on almost any topic), then look no further.
20. Turn your down-time into language-learning time. Practice vocab while getting ready in the morning, have a conversation with yourself in the shower (nobody will know – we promise!), or doodle conjugation charts on your lunch break. Sitting in traffic? Listen to foreign music and practice singing along. See? Almost any situation can be turned into a language-learning opportunity. There’s simply no excuse not to try.
Part of a large library system and not sure how to train staff across all branches? Take a note from the Mid-Hudson Library System that managed to train librarians on Mango Languages in all 66 of their libraries in several different ways. They recognized an increasing number of patrons wanting to interact with their library online and how critical online engagement is to a sustainable future for libraries.
So how did they do it? One effort that immediately skyrocketed usage was what they dubbed a “word of mouth marketing experiment.” Simply informing the staff of all that Mango has to offer and frontloading them with resources increased their ability to connect patrons with these resources, both in the library and online remotely.
Additionally, MHLS offered a self-directed online learning series to staff members with a portion devoted specifically to databases. Nearly 70 people signed up immediately and the numbers grew from there. They created a scavenger hunt for their databases and included Mango in on the fun! On top of the fabulous education and training the staff received, they were also given great tools and tips to promote Mango to patrons in the library.
The awesome staff at MHLS was abuzz with Mango excitement and the increase in usage speaks for itself. Félicitations to the Mid-Hudson Library System for an incredible feat and a job well done!
Looking for ways to promote Mango at your library? Contact your Mango representative for tips and tricks.
Help your library patrons complete their new years’ resolutions. Learning a new language consistently tops resolution lists each January. But now it’s August and your patrons have five months left to reach their goals. Let’s help ‘em out.
You and your patrons can ‘like’ and ‘follow’ Mango on Facebook and Twitter for daily motivation and ideas on how to make the language-learning journey even more fun. Patrons can even share their progress with their social networks to help them keep on track with our new social media feature.
We’ll be sending you materials to help you spread the word to your patrons and get them motived. Tune into the conversation on Twitter with the hashtag: #LanguageResolution.
This is the year. Let’s do this together.