“TALL Information,” A Missionary’s MTC Experience: Language 2015 (2015), 27–30
“TALL Information,” A Missionary’s MTC Experience, 27–30
TALL is “church-produced language-learning software” with matching print materials that provides missionaries opportunities for individualized language instruction and practice.
Missionaries should feel stretched but not overwhelmed. An outside source like TALL can often push us more than we can ourselves. (See Preach My Gospel, 146.)
Reviews and quizzes are administered systematically by the software—and it does not forget to review a topic, like humans do.
Natural language and native speech models are used. Better than a live native, the software will repeat the same phrase thousands of times and never change and never get tired.
TALL is shown to improve pronunciation better than any other activity at the MTC.
Language is taught in missionary contexts, which will be more useful than a secular grammar book. TALL gives missionary terms, whereas a normal dictionary may give unsuitable synonyms for the word.
TALL lets missionaries practice speaking, listening, reading, and writing.
Log on to TALL each day, including Sundays.
Set goals and make plans to use TALL (e.g., 10 min—Review, 20 min—8 phrases, etc.).
Repeat everything you read or hear in a normal voice. The lab should be a noisy place.
Use the headset to compare your recorded voice to that of the native speaker.
Don’t skip reviews.
Learn phrases in addition to individual vocabulary words.
Use all the features of TALL available in your language (phrases, grammar, listening, etc.).
Study the vocabulary and grammar in TALL to prepare for class.
Use the TALL print materials to continue to review what you learned with the software.
Here are a few examples of the types of activities found in TALL:
Vocabulary: Study flashcards, record and compare your pronunciation to a native speaker, test your vocabulary knowledge.
Phrases: Study flashcards, answer fill-in-the-blank questions, listen to native pronunciation.
Grammar (when available): Read an explanation, create sentences, translate passages, record and compare your pronunciation to that of a native speaker.
Listening (when available): Learn and practice listening strategies, engage in a virtual reality interaction with a native speaker, watch missionaries teaching an investigator, listen to investigator concerns and prepare to respond, test your listening comprehension.
Reading (when available): Learn the writing system, learn reading strategies, practice reading the scriptures, test your reading comprehension.
Missionaries log in to TALL every day. They are formally scheduled to attend the TALL lab for one hour, five times a week; the classroom teacher is scheduled to attend one of these times.
On any MTC computer, select the Windows® icon (Start button); select All Programs; select Missionary Resources; then select TALL VP and 4.0. Your username is the 9-digit number from your Missionary ID card, and the password is your birthday.
On any MTC computer, select the Windows® icon (Start button); select Chat with Service Desk, and if you need immediate help, click on the Live Chat link to contact the Service Desk, or Submit Ticket to report an error in the TALL program.
To access the on-screen keyboard help, select the Windows® icon (Start button); select All Programs; select Missionary Resources; then select On-Screen Keyboard.
To switch the keyboard language, click the Language bar icon on the taskbar in the lower right-hand corner of the screen, then select your language or use the hot key Left-Alt-Shift to switch between languages.