English to French translation exercises
Can anyone recommend some good translation resources? I want to practice translating English to French, but all the resources I can find when I search are either "great resources to read in French" (I'm set for reading) or high-level translation resources meant for people actually working being a translator.
I just want some practice around an A2/B1 level to help me get quicker at things like relative pronouns and verb tenses and such, so that when I do conversation exchanges I'm a bit quicker at speaking. I've been doing some writing prompts, which helps, but it's not really the same, since I'm terrible at coming up with ways to use things like those dratted relative pronouns off the top of my head. :P
You know that if you want to speed up at speaking, translations in-head from English can actually be a major slowdown? You have to translate every word then re-arrange them into their correct order... and in worst cases, translating literally can create a sentence that makes zero sense. That said, I know that during learning stages we don't have much choice... and despite this post, I still have to do exactly the same. Unfortunately I don't have any such websites, and while I think it might be a good tool for learning how to express yourself with better vocabulary, I don't see it as something that will speed up conversation.
I'm not really following you. I don't want to translate literally. I don't want to have to sit there trying to figure out how I can say what I want to say. But right now, it's hard not to because I just haven't had enough practice with stuff.
Like the example I used for relative pronouns--I understand pretty well how to use them now, which is great! I've been able to find some quizzes and practice sheets on the web for that, which is great! But I'd like to do more practicing with them in context--say, a paragraph, or perhaps a story or a conversation--and I have a really hard time creating that sort of thing. It takes repetition to remember things like "oh yeah, in that way of asking questions, the sentence flips," and that means I need some way to practice that besides my once-a-week session with my (very wonderful) conversation partner. Or future tenses--sure I can run through the conjugations in my head, but it's more useful for me to actually have to come up with them in context, whether via writing or reading.
I don't see how more practice with the language could do anything but speed up the internal translation process, especially since the end goal isn't to translate anything, it's to automatically express myself in the language. But that takes a long time of practice. :D
Yes as learners we have no choice other than to think in English and translate to whatever language due to lack of fluency. I am not saying such exercises are bad at all, which possibly didn't come across well in my first post - actually, they're probably great for increasing vocabulary, using grammar correctly etc. It will help you speak better indeed, and conjugate verbs better, but I wasn't so sure about the speeding up part as translation can be a slowdown. However, I think eliminating the translation is a later stage. In short: yes it does have its benefits too, so if this way of learning works best for you, I certainly won't stop you.
Kwiziq's weekend writing challenges are excellent. https://french.kwiziq.com/blog/weekly-writing-challenges/ Cheers Matt
What about French audio? Lots of video, TV or audio books.
Or you might find Clozemaster helpful. Provides a variety of grammatical structure and you fill in the missing word. I recommend turning off the English translation. Can also increase the difficulty by texting the answers rather than multiple choice, or listening to the sentences rather than reading them.
Bonne chance !