Behind the Scenes: Meet Phyllis

In March, SCOLA traveled to Germany for our Country of the Month. We explored the German beer culture, tasted apfel kuchen, and discovered new German vocabulary. Some of youPortraitaufnahmen für gewerbliche Zwecke may be wondering who led us on our German adventure…

Phyllis is a SCOLA provider in Germany, but as you can guess by her name she is not German. She is from the United States. In fact, her birthplace is less than an hour drive from SCOLA headquarters in McClelland, Iowa. She has lived in Germany for more than 20 years and began her association with SCOLA years ago by arranging German TV programming. When she retired about two years ago, she began providing SCOLA with videos and photos. She especially likes making the videos because it gives her the opportunity to meet new and interesting people.

Along with the Country of the Month, Phyllis has also been sending in some interesting material for SCOLA‘s new service, Savoir-Vivre! Travel the streets of Germany and other foreign lands as you discover other cultures and experience new lifestyles. Access Savoir-Vivre for free at!

Want to see where we travel to in April? Follow along online:

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SCOLA Travel Journal: Week Twenty-Three

Many of you have been following my travels with On the Street Videos since Week 1 when I visited the Philippines. But as of last week there is a new service on SCOLA and it’s going to take us on a totally new international adventure! Savoir-Vivre is a global adventure in culture. Travel the world. Discover its people. Explore new lifestyles. No passport needed! Log on to today and access your free trial!

postcardIn the past I have only traveled to one country per week with SCOLA, but I am so excited to travel with this new service I visit many, many more! Savoir-Vivre actually allows you to visit through real cities and places from around the world. My first stop is a travel agency in Germany where I learn how to navigate the streets of Savoir-Vivre. I visit the street in Germany and am able to see buildings just as I would if I were actually walking down the street…I am even able to turn and face each building head on! I continue down the street, stopping once to learn about transportation in other parts of the world. Once I get to the end of the German street I click on the map icon to see where else I can visit in the service. I see a lion icon and wonder where that will take me…I click it and suddenly I am on the streets of Macedonia!

In Macedonia I am able to visit the Skopje Zoo, where I discover other zoos, birds, marine life, mammals and reptiles from around the world! Want to see komodo dragons in their natural habitat? Visit Komodo Island in Indonesia! More interested in birds? Check out a flock of migratory birds on the Abukuma River in Japan!

There is so much to experience on Savoir-Vivre, but I don’t want to give it all away! Go check it out for yourself today at!

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SCOLA Travel Journal: Week Fifteen

Frohe Weihnachten! This week I am going to visit Germany with On the Street Videos, but you had probably already guessed that from my holiday greeting! SCOLA has over 2,500 authentic resources that include audio, images, text, and video, so I’m easily able to learn all about this new destination before I begin my adventure.

My first task before I begin my adventure is to log on to Insta-Class on and brush up on my German. The service has ready to use lessons in four different skill levels: beginner, intermediate, superior, and advanced. I start a beginner lesson with a video clip taken at a zoo in Germany. I’m able to read the transcript and translation, take a quiz about the clip, study vocabulary, and then discuss the lesson with other Insta-Class users on a forum. I breeze through a couple beginner lessons and make my way up to the advanced level. Once I am feeling confident in my German skills I venture over to another SCOLA service- Spoken Word.

PP-DE-Wooden Nutcrackers Painted as Soldiers is a Traditional Christmas Decoration

Wooden Nutcrackers Painted as Soldiers is a Traditional Christmas Decoration

Spoken Word is an audio and video forum that allows me to bypass time zones and avoid long distance phone charges by chatting with a native speaker from the comfort of my own home! I log on and leave a video message for Marianne, the German native speaker, and receive a response back within 24 hours! Spoken Word is a great tool for help with pronunciation, and it allows you to pick up on nonverbal communication within the culture. With the help of Insta-Class and Marianne I feel prepared to begin my travels with On the Street Videos!

With the Christmas holiday quickly approaching, my first stop in Germany is to learn about how the holiday is celebrated in Germany. I am able to chat with a local woman who shows me some traditional Christmas mangers and explains other holiday decorations.

My second stop is a local sports club in Germany. I am able to chat with the sports club president, and explore the facilities. The president explains to me what different indoor and outdoor areas of the club are used for.

The last stop on my journey with On the Street Videos is to experience professional motor sports in Germany! I am able to talk with different professionals and explore the world of motor sports: different vehicles, the way different parts work, and so much more! I can’t wait to come back to Germany and learn more about this topic, but for now, there is so much more in the world I need to explore!

From a birthday party in Peru to professional motor sports in Germany, I never know where my adventures with On the Street Videos will lead me! Join me in my adventures with your free trial at!

Check back soon to see where my travels take me next!

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Attention Language Learners!

Attention language learners!

Lower level lessons have been added to our Insta-Class service in the following languages: Spanish-South American, Portuguese, French, and German. Swahili language lessons for beginners are coming soon.

Insta-Class contains ready-to-use “instant” multi-media language lessons produced by SCOLA language experts from around the world. The multi-genre lessons for classroom and individual use are based on actual foreign content and will open in a separate window once chosen. Each lesson will contain a video clip and transcript, translation, a vocabulary list and a quiz to test the users comprehension.

Although some SCOLA services target the more experienced linguist, these new lessons are tailored specifically to beginners. The new level was added to an already impressive list of lessons for advanced, superior, and intermediate learners in over 50 languages.

The 14,000+ lessons on Insta-Class are searchable by Year, Level, Language, Country and Topical Category makes it easy to find exactly what you need.

The convenient lessons benefit classes and independent language learners by saving time and integrating authentic resources. Spanish instructor John White says “I use Insta-Class because what you are seeing is authentic news. Sometimes I want my students to have the visual cues provided in TV programming so that they are immersed in the language but then they also have the actual text being said and the translation.”  You don’t have to take it from us though, try out Insta-Class yourself with this sample or contact us today for your free trial!

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