How to become fluent?
Hey everyone. I finished my French tree about 5 months ago, and I really want to become fluent in the language. The problem is, I have no idea where to start.
I've completed the first 4 levels of Rosetta Stone's French program. I've also been using the "Learn French for Polyglots" course on Memrise for a few weeks now, and so far it's worked pretty well for me. However, it just teaches about 6000 words, which is only around 35% of what you need to know to attain a C2 level of proficiency.
Overall, my use of these three websites have put my French proficiency level right around a B1. I'm happy with the progress I've made, but I feel like I can do more.
I want to learn more vocab, but I can't find any sources that are sufficient.
Has anyone here attained fluency in French or any other foreign language? If so, how did you achieve that milestone? Did you use specific websites or other resources?
(Yes, I am aware that this discussion has been posted in the main Duolingo forum instead of the French one, but think this thread could also be useful for people studying other languages. Thank you for understanding.)
Stuff you might not have tried:
Have you set your devices (phone, computer, etc) to French?
Do you think in French regularly, especially when speaking it? If not, I'd try doing it, even if you need to use a dictionary to help at first.
Do you watch and/or read the French news and know what's going on there?
Have you searched for a local French meetup, or conversation group you could join?
Have you tried using sites like Hellolingo.com, the HelloTalk app, etc to practice French and meet native French speakers?
Are you following at least one French TV show or podcast?
Have you tried reading books or magazines in French?
Do you listen to French music? Have you tried using a site like LyricsTraining.com? It's good for language comprehension, but I also use it to sing along to songs with the song lyrics showing up, karaoke style.
I don't know any French-specific resources, but doing things like I wrote above helped me with Japanese.
EDIT: Also, Anki ( https://apps.ankiweb.net ) is a great cross-platform flashcard program to help you remember the vocabulary you learn.
Oh, and if you have trouble comprehending native media/books, try ones meant for kids or teens.
I became fluent in Spanish through a combination of HelloTalk, Skype, WhatsApp, and meetup. Keep in mind each one of these requires having conversation, most often with native speakers. No amount of studying makes a difference as much as speaking. When you are put in such a situation your mind works overtime trying to form new sentences in a manner that no amount of studying ever covers. It is similar to the fight or flight response. Speak or flight! Haha. But it works.
Books, books, books. You don't have to worry so much about your listening skills, and you can always pause to get a dictionary if you can't use context clues to get a word. I'm sure you'll be able to find simple children's/learner's short books online, and move up as you go.
Plus TV shows and movies. With subtitles at first if you're not confident in your listening comprehension (subs in French, that is). Challenge yourself, see if you can follow the series basically without having to look anything up.
Media and speaking with people in French (finding French subforums of games you play, etc) will be a great step. You can do the reverse tree on here too (French learning English) and chat with people in Duo's French subsection, even if Duo's forums aren't the most intuitive :P