"The beauty of the French language descended from its single latin stock, has triumphed most in the contrary direction - in simplicity, in unity, in clarity, and in restraint." -Lytton Strachey
French is one of the most intriguing languages spoken today. People from all over the world revere the French language and desire to learn more about it to sound international, exclusive, beguiling, and even seductive. Are you one of those people? Do you desire to speak the native tongue of geniuses such as Piaf, Monet, Matisse, and Chanel? If so, you are not alone!
Learning more about the French language has become a pastime of individuals spread across the six inhabited continents.
It's important to state that the beginning stage of learning a new language is always the most exciting, and it is also when students have the most motivation. For instance, a French beginner might be smitten with the idea of learning Napoleon's language and download new language learning apps, listen to French music, and even hire a private tutor. However, after the honeymoon phase is over and learners realise that acquiring a foreign tongue is a lot of work, they abandon their new hobby before arriving at an intermediate level.
Therefore, the question arises, how can French language learners go from a beginner level to an intermediate level without getting discouraged and stay motivated? Well, you've come to the right place since that topic will be discussed in today's article and also because the pros at Superprof are language learning experts!
Check out our article about honing reading skills in French.
Set Unbreakable Goals in Your French Course
"A goal without a plan is only a dream." -Brian Tracy
We could not agree more with Brian Tracy when it comes to learning a new tongue. Without a structured list of goals and learning objectives, the process of language acquisition is only a dream that might be realised in the future someday. However, we refuse to let our readers/learners abandon their dreams because they don't know how to set language goals.
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We cannot stress having goals enough when learning French since it will be much too easy to abandon studying French without them.
But what language learning goals should one set when studying French? The following are some suggested learning goals that can be taken into consideration when analysing the French language:
- Take two classes with a native French tutor per week,
- Studying French every day with the help of a language learning app,
- Listen to 30 minutes of French music per day,
- Find a French TV series that you might like and watch a new episode three times a week,
- Know 500 necessary French words,
- Master between 10-20 French verbs in the present, past, and future tense,
- Schedule a free conversation with a French native for an hour or more at least once a week.
While the previously mentioned goals may sound a little intense for some, they are designed to help French beginners quickly rise to an intermediate level. Also, although plans can be customised to your speed of learning, the critical thing to remember is that objectives help us stay focused, and it hurts like hell when you don't achieve your goal.
Learning goals can have a unique time that differs from person to person; nonetheless, to see speedy results, a shorter time frame is recommended.
Before concluding this section, it's essential to state that you don't want to set unrealistic goals that are boring and hard to achieve. Learning must be fun, which brings us to the following subheading!
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Make French Learning Fun
To see results and stick to learning a new language through thick and thin, it needs to be fun, and learners need to be engaged. Because, to be honest, no one wants to browse through the pages of a boring old textbook that hasn't been updated or used since the 80s!
Also, it is essential to state that the argument of making language learning fun is even more crucial for millennials and Gen Z. Why? Since we bombarded with social media that shortens our attention span and makes us crave, new, never been seen before methods and techniques. So, the verdict is clear: make learning French fun or we're done!
Nevertheless, thanks to the brilliant ideas of educators and language enthusiasts, there are so many fun-filled practices that have been developed to make learning French a complete blast. Such as? The following list boasts a few ridiculously enjoyable ways to learn French and progress beyond beginner's status:
- Change Your Phone's Language: do you want to submerge yourself in the French language entirely but you don't have the budget to live abroad? Well, have no fear, there is a solution! Change your iPhone or Android cellular phone interface to French. Why is that a good idea? Although you might think it confusing, setting your phone in French will force you to practice vocabulary and memorise key phrases every time you search for something, receive a text message, or send an email.
- Cook French Recipes: watching Youtube tutorials from famous French chefs is a brilliant way to tune your ears to the French language and learn new recipes at the same time! The best thing about watching cooking videos is that they are designed to ensure that all steps are followed closely; therefore, the vocabulary is detailed, and the speaking pace of the chef is slow which makes it perfect for honing listening skills.
- Eat a French Bistro: try to find a French restaurant near your place of residence and go there at least once a week to practice ordering and conversing with the wait staff in French. Although the majority of waiters working at French bistros in the UK are English speakers, you are bound to find one that can practice French conversation with you.
- Choose the Best Learning Apps: have you come across recommended learning apps that are informative yet boring? If so, you're not alone, and since time is short and language learning should be fun, we recommend only using the engaging apps. Don't waste your time doing something that you don't enjoy and remember there are plenty of online resources to learn French.
If it's not fun, you're not doing it right. Learning a new language should be not only one of the most rewarding experiences but also one of the most entertaining. Remember to laugh at your mistakes, keep things light, and stay humble; you'll own the French language!
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Consider Alternative French Learning Resources
"Challenge your own status quo -before someone else does." -Ron Kaufman
Ahh, the status quo; an existing series of events that are never disrupted or questioned. Sometimes good and sometimes bad, the status quo provides comfort when it is uninterrupted. Nonetheless, when learning a new language, should you follow the status quo and do precisely the same as everyone before you? Not exactly.
At Superprof, we encourage our readers to think outside the box and try distinct methods that prove to be more beneficial than the norm. Such as? For instance, when beginners start learning French, or any other language, there are a few online resources that are always recommended: Duolingo and Babbel. And although they are great resources, they are very generic and overused.
We are in no way bashing the functionality of more popular options; we want French learners to know that there are alternative options that merit consideration. Little do many people know that learning companies such as Anki, Busu, Italki, and Tandem help thousands of learners each day acquire more information about their language of choice, including French. Let us consider the positive characteristics of the websites mentioned above.
Learn French with Anki
A few of my friends have used Anki in the past to study academic disciplines such as nursing, maths, and other essential topics. What did they find useful? Well, the primary appealing factor of Anki is the flashcards since they have the following functions:
- Flashcards can be randomised,
- The customised deck of flashcards can be shuffled,
- If you failed or needed more time to answer the flashcard, it is sent in the deck again to review later.
Also, Anki is excellent because it can be downloaded on any Windows, iOs, or Android device so that flashcards that help master the French language can be analysed at a later time. Most users find Anki helpful when learning a new language, studying for a Uni exam, brushing on geography, remembering people's faces, and mastering long poems.
A fantastic replacement for Babbel is known as Busuu. With a community of over 100 million native speakers to connect and learn with, Busuu is a leader in the language learning industry.
Popular languages learnt to include French, Italian, Mandarin Chinese, Portuguese, Spanish, and Russian. And, did you know that you can get instant feedback on written and spoken lessons from qualified members of the community who talk about the language you are currently learning.
Reputable companies such as Google, the BBC, and Apple have praised Busuu for its ability to help students learn a new language and advance from beginner to intermediate French speaker in less than 10 minutes a day.
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Learn with Italki
Available since 2007, Italki has been an industry leader for many years and has helped thousands of people from all over the world become fluent in a foreign tongue.
We recommend studying with Italki to learn French since, for a limited time offer, your 1st lesson is completely free of charge.
Classes are one-on-one, and there are so many different teachers offering their services that you are bound to find one that will fit your unique needs to learn more French. According to the current Italki home page, there are over 640 tutors teaching French online for reasonable prices.
Also, Tandem is another excellent option that deserves special attention for those who want to learn more about French.
In conclusion, we hope that the suggestions in today's article can provide all our French learners with the necessary tools to rise above from a beginners level and become intermediate students with a bright future!
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