Go Beyond Convention
A guest article by Jessica of french-resources.org
Most people learn French in classrooms and in online forum with fellow students and with tutors doing the teaching. This option is advantageous in that you get one-on-one interaction with your tutor and you will get your pronunciation right. You also get to practice with fellow students (which helps build your confidence). There are, however, several unconventional techniques that will help you learn French well and fast. The techniques are particularly effective for adults. Children can pick up a language a lot more intuitively (adults tend to learn languages by comparing them to their native languages and they have a tendency to want to know why something is said the way it is).
Reading books helps improve your vocabulary and it helps give you context since you get to explore the French culture. For instance, you will learn situations where you are expected to say ‘bonjour’ and where you are not. You do not have to spend a lot of money buying French books. You, also, do not have to suffer the inconvenience of visiting your local library every now and then. You could try Google book search for good e-Books, some available free of charge.
Consider learning French by watching French movies and TV programs, by listening to French radio and by listening to recorded interviews. This helps you avoid monotony. It also helps you with pronunciation and with context. There are many resources on the Internet.
If you are not learning French in a brick & mortar classroom, consider joining an online community. An online community allows you to practice what you have learnt with other French learners as well as French speakers. This will improve your confidence, it will help improve your pronunciation and it will help with context. The online community could be a discussion forum, a blog, or a social media site.
French phrase/flash cards will help improve your French skills. Phrase cards are basically cards on which you write new French phrases for quick reference. This ensures you do not forget words you have heard or read and it helps you revise whenever you want, wherever you are. These cards are available in stationery stores.
Have you ever considered visiting France or any Francophone country? This is the most effective way of learning French because you will interact with the locals as they perform daily activities. When you visit a Francophone country, you will understand the culture and the specific applications of different French words. The fact that you will have no choice but to speak in French means you will learn much faster.
Learning from a trained tutor is still one of the most effective ways to learn French. If you do not want the inconvenience of going to a class or joining an online class but you still want the help of a tutor, you could always download French lessons or buy CDs and DVDs.
An unconventional yet effective way to learn French is playing games. You could buy puzzles or play online games. Just like watching French movies, this helps reduce boredom. You should also consider language exchange. This involves spending half the time learning French and spending the other half teaching it. This is not only fun, but the practice also helps you learn.
Learning a new language requires patience, but power studying will help you learn fast. To accelerate the rate of learning French, consider dedicating one or two hours each day to learning French. Power studying means getting rid of all distractions and concentrating on learning the language. Consistency is key if you want to master French or any other language.
Thanks to Jessica of french-resources.org for this guest article. You can get lots of good French language activities from her website.