So I finished the French tree today!
After one year, of which the first 6 months were rather intensive and the last 6 months more sporadically, I've completed the French tree. This is how I did it:
Some 30 to 50 XP per weekday, 100 to 150 XP on weekends. Probably 80% of the tree was done in the first 6 months, then I somewhat lost interest in French on Duolingo.
Took 3 terms of courses at the local Alliance Francaise on Saturdays.
Doing a course with the 600 most common French verbs on Memrise.
Listened to French podcasts. Started with 'Coffee Break French', then moved on to 'Francais Authentique', then began to listen to Radio France International podcasts. I started with 'Journal en Francais facile', which is intended for foreigners, then I started to listen to other RFI ones directed towards a francophone audience like 'Grand Reportage', 'Cultures Monde', 'Carrefour de l'Europe', etc.
Tried to watch some French movies but found it hard to understand and follow the conversation.
Found it somewhat hard to read fiction, but read a couple of non-fiction books. For some reason it's much easier to read books on the topics of economics and geopolitics than it is to read fiction. Magazines like 'Le Point' are also much easier than novels.
So I feel like this is a bit of an achievement and I'd love to move on to finish a tree in another language, but since I don't have much practical experience of speaking French I think I will have to spend some time in a French speaking country first to really make French stick and then switch focus to another language. I'm now looking into going to France in June to take a few weeks of language classes and then try to stay on and work for a while if I can.
Good luck all French learners!
Congratulations on your progress in the French tree. You've reached level one in all the skills, and Duo awarded the Golden Owl. Notice that you just have four more levels to go to make the entire tree golden. Then maybe you'll choose to give the reverse tree a try: English from French. Best of luck!
As much as I would love to see the French golden tree, I feel like the main goal at this stage is to get more practical experience of actually speaking to people in normal conversations. I'm at a point where I can understand most of what's being said in a news broadcast, but I'm still not comfortable in spontaneously opening a conversation.
I will return to higher levels on the tree if and when needed as repetition.
Moreover, there are also other languages that I want to master through this wonderful Duolingo!
You stated it yourself. You're still not comfortable in spontaneously opening a conversation. You need more practice. Get your skills up a few levels higher, or even better, golden! This will help to ensure you understand the words AND their contexts. Also, use Memrise.
I think the topics like Geopolitics have a lot more vocabulary overlap with English. You get words like "investissement" and "premier ministre".
Movies are just the worst. I sometimes think there are 3 completely different French languages, the one explained in text books, the one you hear on the news, and the one people actually speak.
You should work your way up to a Golden tree. Seeing as all of your Skills are at level 1, you should get them all to level 2. Then 3, then 4, until the entire tree is golden. In my opinion, you should at least get the Skill to level 2 or 3 before moving on, to make sure you understand and remember the words and their contexts.
Congrats! Thanks for the podcast recommendations. I've been looking for something to supplement my learning and the Coffee Break French looks like a great place to start!
Congrats on finishing your French tree! You should be really proud of yourself! Keep it up. Regards/SbC
Félicitations! Have "un temps merveilleux" this summer in France and thanks for posting your method of learning! Here's a lingot for you!
As an experiment I started learning Portuguese from French. This is actually quite fun because you're sort of learning two languages at the same time. It requires a lot of focus though.
Congratulations and thanks for sharing the learning tips!! Agree that it's very important to get more experience speaking with people.
I started with French a few ago. The odds of me going to France is rather slim, although there's slight higher chance of me going to Quebec.
For now, it's a hobby and... I guess I'm doing okay.
Congratulations on the conquest of the French tree. Thank you for the interesting experience. Good luck
Hello, would you make a French translation of your text, just to appreciate
Congrats on your achievement! I’ve only got one more pass through to finish the French tree. I’m very much looking forward to getting it done. Have you ever heard of Fluent Forever? Gabe Wyner has developed a better method for language learning and there’s an app out soon. If you don’t want the cost of a regular subscription, check out his CreativeLive course.
For a fiction book, I recommend: Merde, It's Not Easy to Learn French. It's a fun and easy book to read. https://www.amazon.com/Merde-Its-Easy-Learn-French/dp/1795292733/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=france+dubin&qid=1553266438&s=gateway&sr=8-1