Developing Language Skills with New Amigos Board Game

I have always been fascinated by languages. In fact, raising bilingual children is was one of the primary reasons we chose to homeschool. Along the way, we have purposely sought out resources and opportunities to develop fluency in a second language.

Finding materials for Norwegian is not easy (at least where I live) so I was very excited to discover the New Amigos board game. New Amigos makes language learning fun and interactive!

The game has sold over 42,000 copies in Norway where it was developed. In Europe, it is distributed through toy stores, department stores, as well as book stores. Thus far, there are several versions available including: Norsk-English, Norsk-Spanish, and Norsk-Arabic!

Developing Language Skills

You can play either as an individual or on teams, independent of language knowledge or age. By virtue of three difficulty levels, played in parallel, even novices can stand a chance against advanced speakers and learn the basics of the language along the way.

The game works in two directions: native English speakers, for example, but wish to learn Norwegian can play the English-Norwegian version with speakers of Norsk who wish to learn English. The vocabulary is learned by everyone as each player takes his or her turn.

I have compiled a list of my favorite Norwegian Language Resources for families interested in learning Norwegian, Snakker du Norske?

Even players with the same language background and goals can play together. In other words, though both my daughter and I desire to learn Norwegian and are at different levels ourselves, we can successfully play the game together and learn from one another. We do not need to play with someone who speaks the language fluently.

The correct pronunciation of words in foreign languages is no problem, as New Amigos uses a unique phonetic system that doesn’t require any advance knowledge. Unlike the dictionaries, the words are spelled using Latin alphabet letters instead of phonetic symbols.

New Amigos Game Play

The goal of the game is to win cards over three rounds, each new round begins after seven cards have been won. This is accomplished by translating cards in both languages. The winner is the player who, in the final round, translates all of the played cards error-free.

Novices translate simple words, while advanced players translate more difficult words. In addition to vocabulary, there are also sentences and idiomatic expressions. New Amigos also includes geographical information and cards focused on culture, business, and food and drink.

New Amigos is a great game for language learners of all skill levels. Available for purchase online, there are four bilingual versions presently available: Spanish/Norsk, Arabic/Norsk, English/Norsk, and Spanish/English.

Finishing Strong #107

Welcome to Finishing Strong ~ a weekly link-up dedicated to families homeschooling middle & high school kids. Each Wednesday, moms just like you share their best tips, encouragement, advice, and more for teaching older kids at home.

Finishing Strong Finishing Strong is hosted by me here at EvaVarga along with my friends – Heather from Blog She Wrote, Megan and Susan from Education Possible, and Heidi from Starts at Eight.


This past week has been been full of new experiences and learning opportunities in our home. Not just for the kids but for us parents as well – both personally and professionally.

In regards to the kids, Geneva has completed her first term at the community college, started competitive swimming with our local high school team (the alma mater of both her father and I), and earned her first Venturing rank. Last week, I’ve shared a little about Geneva’s plan for high school in my post, High School Forecasting: Coordinating Schedules, CLEP Exams, and College Courses.
high-school-forecasting

Jeffrey has participated in his first FIRST Lego League competition, solved a 3×3 cube in a new personal best under 10 seconds (he’s very excited), and made great strides on his journey to Eagle Scout. I’ll be sharing more about his endeavors soon.


I am delighted that families homeschooling middle and high school age students are coming together and finding inspiration in one another. That’s has been the goal of Finishing Strong since its inception. Let’s continue to work together to make this resource a success. Please share this post and link-up your own posts below.

I know you will find the posts that have been shared with us inspiring! Grab a cup of tea, kick back, and take some time to check out the wonderful posts shared below. What are your favorites?

“"BoardThe post with the most clicks last week was Megan’s 6 Board Games for Teens shared at Education Possible.  As a family that loves board games, I was delighted to see new titles as well as a few old favorites.

100 STEM ProjectsSTEAM is my passion and thus, Heather’s post, 100 STEM Activities for Kids & Teens of All Kinds, was my favorite post this past week. I really need to create a post like this one myself. 🙂

Teens Can Make a DifferenceService learning has always been a major component of our homeschool. For this reason, I loved Megan’s post 5 Ways Teens Can Make a Difference in the World.

@ @ @

As always, thank you for helping us to make Finishing Strong a key resource for families who are homeschooling through the middle & high school years.

What are you going to share with us this week?

Guidelines:

  1. Link up to 3 posts from your blog. Make sure you use the exact URL to the post, not to your home page. You can add any post related to homeschooling middle and high school students. Posts unrelated to that will be removed.
  2. Please no advertising, individual Pinterest pins, Facebook, Twitter, or other link-up links!
  3. Grab our button to add to your post after you link it up. Each week we will be choosing our favorite posts to highlight on all 4 sites. If you were featured, we would love for you to use the “I was featured” button.
  4. The linky will go live on each co-host’s blog each Wednesday at 6am EST, and will be live until Tuesday at 11:55 pm.

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Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years

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Wildcraft: An Herbal Adventure Game

I am excited to share with you a fabulous game we’ve had the pleasure to experience with a couple friends of ours.  WildCraft: An Herbal Adventure Game is a cooperative game that teaches about edible and medicinal plants.  We love board games and this one is great for it teaches while it entertains.  I have been a fan of this herbal learning board game for quite a while and now I have ordered my own copy.

wildcraft-board-photoWildcraft! is all about real, valuable knowledge and skills that are quickly getting lost in today’s technological age. It is a gorgeous game that teaches the players all about herbs and their uses.  Artist and naturalist Beatriz Mendoza uses vibrant watercolors to create a colorful and playful world for Wildcraft!  The plant cards show the level of detail needed for identification in the field.

The players are on a mission from grandma to go and pick wild Huckleberries.  Players walk up and down a long winding path to collect berries, along the way they find herbs (plants cards), and they even run into some trouble (trouble cards).  Some of the troubles include sore muscles, an earache, a toothache, a hornet sting, and splinters.  Thankfully, the herbs you have been collecting along the way may provide just the right herbal remedy to help you.

Step by step along the game board kids (and parents) learn about various herbs and their practical applications in health and healing. Wildcraft! includes a 20×20 inch game board, instructions, 4 player pieces, 52 plant cards, 52 trouble cards, 25 cooperative cards, and a spinner. It also comes with a downloadable story to enhance the story of the game.

This game typically only goes on sale during the holidays. But for the next couple days (until May 30th) you can get it for 50% off, that’s less than $20!  To make the deal even sweeter they are also giving buyers the following free bonuses:

  • Access to webinar, Outdoor Kids, Herbal First Aid for Summer, by Aviva Romm
  • Dandelion Activity eBook
  • Herbal Roots zine kids activity magazine
  • The Herbal Gifts eBook (Saves you more in gifts than you spend on the game)
  • Mentoring Kids & Nature Connection with Jon Young (mp3)
  • Herb Fairies Activity Pack, with Book One and activity materials

Dixit: A New Favorite Board Game

We are a family that loves to play board games. Many of our favorites are games that are less commonly known to the general public.  I’m not sure why that is .. but my guess it is because the games we play and enjoy most are not available at national box store chains.  Rather they are sold at independent game stores.  Of course, they are available online as well but we’d rather support the local guy when possible.
The most recent addition to our larder is Dixit. We received the original version as a gift this past summer and have enjoyed playing it on multiple occasions.  Each player at his turn plays the storyteller. He chooses a single picture from his hand of six and tells a short paragraph, a sentence, or even a single a word connected to his picture.  Then each player chooses one of his pictures that best matches the story.  The cards are then mixed up and placed on the table face up.  Each player then bets upon what picture was the storyteller’s.

The munchkins absolutely love this game.  It is suggested for ages 8 and up but younger children can be successful as well as there is no reading required.  The illustrations are fabulous … even inspiring us to create our own, though expansion card sets are available.  Another great thing about this game is that the cards can be used as story prompts and thereby integrated into your language arts curriculum.