Over the past few years, Normandale has served hundreds of adult learners through our languages courses, helping them gain new skills and enrich their lives.
American Sign Language
These courses develop your ability to converse in American Sign Language and build confidence in your skills.
About our Instructor: Jamey Guille
Jamey is a native of the Twin Cities and is a graduate of the University of MN with a BA in Deaf Studies & Communication Disorders. He has also earned a Masters in Education in Deaf Education & American Sign Language (ASL). Jamey teaches ASL courses at a local high school and has been a valued instructor at Normandale since 2006. He lost his hearing at age two from spinal meningitis, and brings an authentic and caring perspective to his courses.
From ASL Students:
|» "Jamey's sense of humor and ability to interact with students reduced any anxiety or barriers to learning a new language. Enjoyed the class."|
|» "I really enjoyed having Jamey as an instructor! He has a great personality and is very approachable. The flow of the class was great."|
|» "Jamey was a great instructor. I was surprised how much I learned in just 6 weeks."|
Did You Know?
Mandarin Chinese becoming the first choice as second language. http://tinyurl.com/9jvaz9l
Mandarin Chinese is the most widely spoken language in the world. It is the official language of Mainland China and Taiwan, and is one of the official languages of Singapore and the United Nations.
About our instructor: Youmei Hou
Youmei Hou has been a language instructor for 20 years. She taught in Zhaoqing College in China for 11 years, and was an exchange instructor in 2000. In 2002, she returned to the United States and enrolled in classes for her master's degree at North Dakota State University. Youmei is also an interpreter working in the Twin Cities.
What our students say about Youmei:
|»||"Youmei is delightful and makes learning fun.|
|»||"It is a very good course. I enjoyed it and learned a lot."|
|»||"I really enjoyed this class and will continue learn more."|
|»||"From my previous experience with trying to learn Chinese, I thought that this would be really hard to do. The class was all adult learners and a lot of us were initially nervous. However, Youmei Hou (the instructor) immediately created a relaxed setting and was always there to help us. Every year, I travel to China for my business and now feel much more confident because of the knowledge I gained in this class." - Nancy Peterson, CEO Display Sales|
Since 2006, students from more than 45 countries have participated in our accent reduction classes!
BUILD YOUR CONFIDENCE
Being confident that you'll be understood is an essential component of learning, successful employment, and community involvement. At Normandale, we have several options to help you improve your English speaking skills in a warm, safe and fun environment. Instructor Claire Tokar describes each class as "a temporary world family, where learners can connect with each other." Having overcome a learning disability herself, Claire knows first-hand how challenging it is to spell and pronounce unfamiliar words. "It takes courage to work on speaking skills. I admire the learners who do this, and it is an honor to teach them."
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR: CLAIRE TOKAR
Claire Campbell-Tokar has been teaching pronunciation skills for over 25 years as a speech and singing teacher. Her work with ESL began about 15 years ago with one on one coaching for professional people from Asia, Africa, and South America. Claire is a language consultant for an international PR firm, coaching their foreign clients. She applies the same techniques that are successful in private sessions to small classes of learners with international backgrounds thorough Normandale.
Learn French phrases that are comonly used in airports, hotels, restaurants, and among your French colleagues.
INSTRUCTOR: Rose Mingo
Rose Mingo-Holtz is from Haiti and a native French and Creole speaker. She has been teaching for Normandale for more than 10 years.
|» "She is a great instructor! Fast paced and very informative."|
|» " Learning was extremely easy with Rose. She puts things in perspective & makes it practical."|
|» " I learned a lot and enjoyed it."|
Whether you are interested in art, opera, history or architecture, learning Italian will lead you to a deeper understanding of these and many other expressions of Italian culture.
Each Italian course has a bonus online classroom (at Sophia.org) where your instructor will post recaps of each week's lesson. An access code will be provided on the first day of classes.
You will learn the practical, communicative and essential language patterns used in everyday life. Learn how the old and new coexist, and become familiar with the culture in a way that'll help you communicate more effectively with native Japanese speakers.
- Japanese Level 1 through Level 3
- Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) Preparatory Course (N5-N1)
Michiko Kato Dressen is a native of Oita City, Japan. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Voice and Music Education in from Kunitachi College of Music in Tokyo and her Master's degree in Education/Human Development from the University of Minnesota. She joined the Japanese Language & Cultures project at Intermediate District 287 in Plymouth, Minnesota and taught at various High Schools in the Hennepin County area for over 20 years. She has also taught Japanese language classes at the Minnesota Japanese Saturday School; Metropolitan State University; and was an adjunct professor for the Department of Modern and Classical Languages at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN.
|» "The instructor was so engaging and easy to follow. It was thoroughly enjoyable to come to class."|
|» "The class was very well done and Michiko was great. She made learning fun and interesting. I would definitely take more classes taught by her!"|
|» "By far Michiko is the best language instructor I have ever had."|
Our Beginning Spanish program is designed for beginners whose goal is to eventually become fluent. These classes help learners build a solid foundation of Spanish grammar and an extensive vocabulary to equip them for a continuing, in-depth study of the language.