How to learn the French language

How to learn the French language

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Added by December 9, 2013

Student learning French

HOW TO LEARN FRENCH

A Few Tips on How to Learn the French Language

A lot of people contact me to learn French and they’re usually very excited about it. So why is it that a few months down the line, only a handful of them have not given up? Did I bore them to death? I do my best not be… For the most part, I’d say that the motivation goes away when faced with the difficulty of the task. How’s yours right now? Ready to keep on ready?!! So, how can one learn the language of love?!

French learning studentFirst of all, by being aware that learning French or any other language for that matter, takes a lot of time and energy in it. I mean, it all depends on what you what. So before you start, know what it is that you want to achieve, what are your personal objectives.

It is primary to know why you want to learn the language. If you only wanna grab a few words and expressions before going on a vacation in a French speaking country, then it’s fairly simple. You can start by yourself, right now. Get a French book for beginners and start:

  • Memorizing words and sentences;
  • Listening to audio recordings to know what it all sounds like;
  • Practicing and repeating what you hear. If you feel like a two-year old, repeating everything like a parrot, you’re on the right track!

“Oh la la, I Speak French” offers a great French for Travelers program with a series of fun videos to watch and practice sheets to play around with (see pdf files attached to each video). That will get you started! It is also always a good idea to attend a class or to work with a tutor so that you can practice the language orally – which is what it’s all about really: speaking!

Pile of French books

If you’d like to attain a more in-depth knowledge of the language, then get ready for the long haul! Perfecting your French will be a never-ending process, but one you can do your best to enjoy. Think of it like a marriage, you commit and you stick with it! The good news is, you can stop your commitment to French any time you wish…Girl studying French

More seriously, if you’re serious about learning French, then I highly recommend to enroll in a class or hire a French tutor, first and foremost. Start getting familiar with French pronunciation, learn basic French vocabulary, study French grammar, and most importantly start developing a sense of the language. Once that’s done, it’s mostly a matter of finding every opportunity you can to read, read, read (magazines, blogs etc.), and speak, speak, speak! Visit French learning websites; there are tons of great ones available to you for free, in fun and varied formats. The BBC and TV5 offer great educational programs. Go on vacation to French-speaking countries! Be talkative! You can’t be shy when studying a new language. And above all, enjoy the process! Have fun with the whole experience. You’re not only learning a language, you’re also exploring a new way of thinking and discovering a new culture. Hopefully you’ll get rid of some good old stereotypes about the French too! We do have a sense of humor, you know! And yes, complaining is a national activity. Try it, find the French-ness in you, you might actually like it!

At the end of the day, it’s all worth it! To help you keep the motivation up, you can join us on Facebook to enrich your vocabulary every day and interact with other French learners and native speakers. A bientôt!

Soraya Garre, French actress Soso

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