100 days of French
I started my French journey exactly 100 days ago. Where am I now?
I cannot state how important it has been to me. I am dating a French girl now and will be visiting France in summer. I have always liked France and go there once or twice a year and this time I`ll make sure I shall use French.
I have 12 more units to go before I complete my tree.
Still a current challenge for me is verbal comprehension. I need my girlfriend to speak to me in English :( Currently listening to French songs and videos to improve my listening skills.
I've been using a site called Yabla for listening comprehension (it's like $10/month, though). It has word-for-word French and English subtitles, which you can hide. The clips are all pretty much 5 minutes or less. The problem I found with using subtitles for other things, like films, is that the subtitles rephrased the spoken dialogue at lot, which made it hard for me to focus on anything else.
However...I would think that trying to speak with your girlfriend in French more often would be way more useful than any videos. A site called Memrise, which is free, is good for learning and practicing vocab, if that is part of what keeps you from understanding your girlfriend.
Anyway, if someone has a good (and free) alternative to Yabla, I'm sure a lot of us, myself included, would really appreciate it.
Thank you very much for your suggestion.I tried Memrise but I quickly got bored with it. I tried another site that has subtitles in French and English for free but certain videos need a premium account. I can`t recall what site is called but I will let you know once I can recall the site.
I kind of think of Memrise as a quick vocabulary drill and of Duolingo as a quick sentence structure/possibly grammar drill. I don't pay attention to any of the memes people make on memrise, though, since I don't think that's a good way to learn a language. I think it does help my vocab, though.
Another user replied to me with this link, in case you didn't see it: http://apprendre.tv5monde.com/
I haven't tried it yet, but it looks promising.
Good luck! If you're interested, maybe we could do some kind of French pen pal thing, or try to speak in French on Skype. I haven't done that before, but maybe a low-pressure situation like that would help us get more comfortable with speaking and listening. I'm so insecure about it that I don't even try to practice French with my two co-workers who are fluent in French.
I try to speak French to French speakers here but more often than not I need them to reply in English for me to understand
Our language lab at school uses TV5 for the French classes... I'm staff so I'm not in the classroom, but they've used it for ages so it must be a good resource. I think they have a channel for every language the department teaches.
Hi Shaun, my name is Maria. Congratulations on your progress. I kind of am in the same shoes. I am married to a french man but i still find it very difficult to comprehend. I am just starting to learn french and so i am still very poor in it but i would very much appreciate it if you would be willing to guide or direct me on how you have gone about learning the french language. Thank you.
Thanks for commenting here. I can only spend around an hour on Duolingo as I`m quite busy with work. This is the step to get the fundamentals of the language. What I do is that whenever I start a new lesson, I write down all the new words, their meaning and all the sentences from that particular lesson.
On the listening part, I would suggest listening to French songs. I have a decent collection of them in my car. (I only have French songs and instrumentals these days) Some suggestions: Indila, Stromae, Princess Sarah, Marie Mai, Jenifer, Shy`m. Even at my stage, catching each word is not that easy, so I look up the lyrics once in a while when I play them. Singing along helps. I now know how to sing Papaoutai lol.
Spoken French- The French for dummies book is good to learn proper pronunciation for beginners. I place my order in French when I`m in a French cafe/ restaurant. Chatting up with random French people helps a lot in building confidence.
Written: I write random essays once in a while and I text my French speaking friends.
My next step would be to live in France for a month this summer. I did that last year too but back then I have not started my Duolingo journey.
Thank you so very much for your suggestions. Will definitely be listening more to french music and watching french movies. Your input is much appreciated. Will follow through all that you have suggested. Thanks again and best of luck.
Also, check out this link: http://www.quora.com/What-are-the-best-ways-to-learn-a-language-as-an-adult
My main suggestion is to nail the pronunciation if you haven't already. I used Pimsleur for that, which is expensive but obtainable by other means. This will make remembering words a lot easier.