Scared of Italki
Hi there, so I've been using duolingo on my phone for a while and can almost read some basic french on facebook and so. This is starting to get a bit boring tho and I actually want to speak a bit. I've gone out and bought a webcam and have mailed a couple of teachers to ask for help ,while explaing I'm an absolute beginner.Problem is now the thought of trying to speak French over skype kind of scares me and I'm putting it off. Anyone else been through this ?
The beginnings are always the hardest part. Once you've dared to speak a couple of times with somebody in French, you'll have no fear. As Shia Labeouf would say... DO IT! JUST DO IT!
From somebody who struggled with the same problem when deciding to speak German ;)
Definitely starting is the hard bit. Try writing out things you might need/want to say during the conversation and practise them.
Introducing yourself, talking about your family and friends and hobbies, and about yourself. Just stuff that you know you can easily come out with so you don't fear sitting there like a lemon with nothing to say!
And also things like "Can you say that again?" "Please speak more slowly" "I don't understand" - so you know if things go wrong, at least you can let the person know you're struggling.
It is the scariest bit, IMO, the first conversation. Give yourself as much chance for it to go well as you can, and then it will get less scary.
If you don't feel you are prepared, learn a little bit more and some select vocabulary. Also the best part about learning a language as a newbie is that there are filler words and conversation backers for you.
such as "I see", "uhhhh", "what was it", "yeah", "Uh-huh|.
Just learn these in French too, because nothing is worse than silent moments in language conversation. Plus it may give you some time to recall something by using "What was it" and "uhhh", or make it appear as if you understand what they are saying by using "I see" and "yeah".
Also learn how to say "How do you say ___ French". This really helped with me, when I was learning Japanese I think the things I said the most in conversation was
They actually complimented me on my Japanese just for using this words, because some believed that I actually understood them. But don't rely on them, you have to learn. Also if you don't want to talk with them, just text using apps like "Hellotalk".
Also If I can do it, you can. I hate socializing face to face and often get anxious, but I have met some really great people in the language learning community.
Sign up for several lessons with different teachers. Don't set expectations for yourself. When you are done with the lessons, consider which teacher you had the most fun with and sign up for 10 more with them. For me, the hardest part was letting go of my own expectations and deciding that it was ok not to be good at something. If you keep working at it, you can't be a beginner forever!
I DIDN'T SAY IT WOULD BE EASY, BUT I DID SAY IT WOULD BE WORTH IT
- SOME INSPIRATIONAL QUOTE
Believe me, I was terrified before I did my first online conversation/class. There was a teacher, me, and another learner. The teacher only spoke French. I just thought we would be doing regular things like, "This is a cat," but it went even deeper as I did negative sentences, and the learner and I even asked each other questions in French! I was scared at first, but the teacher was patient, and I eventually got into the flow and it turned out fun and rewarding!
The only bad thing for me was that my internet connection was slow, and I logged off twice. Thankfully, the teacher and the other learner was there when I logged back on.
I never tried iTalki (I was using Rosetta Stone for my online class), but I do have an account with them. I'm waiting for a better internet connection before I pay for classes. Also, check out online as people put up their iTalki experiences.
Anyways, I wish you the best, and if you do face your fear, please let us know how the session went!