Nowadays, it has become un jeu d’enfant to learn a foreign language. And, that is thanks to the Internet; it provides us with tons of information and gives us unlimited opportunities to practice. But, how can you avoid getting lost in the sea of information and use the internet wisely? I’ll give you a clue.
1. Find a language exchange partner
That’s a great way for you to start speaking the language you learn from the very beginning. There are lots of french native speakers who are ready to help you. Don’t be afraid of making mistakes or not pronouncing some sounds well; that’s a necessary part of learning. What is important is that you make yourself understood and understand your partner. This way, you won’t have communication problems with your business partners or strangers in real life. I should warn you though, that it takes time to find a language exchange partner willing to keep talking to you in the long run, but it is definitely worth it. You can find a Language Partner to practice French on the italki online community.
2. Learn grammar and vocabulary
Reading and speaking is important, but without grammar, you won’t succeed in speaking. Here are sites which will help you master different aspects of French grammar:
FrancaisFacile.com - you’ll find numerous exercises on all grammar aspects of French. You have “grammar lessons” which explain you rules and exercises to practice them. Anyone can add exercises to this site.
BonjourdeFrance - this site is run by professionals and you can find exercises divided by levels and language skills.
3. Read blogs
You certainly have a hobby or there is something you are interested in. Maybe it’s gardening, home decor, travelling or some sport or your job. There are lots of French people who are interested in these things as much as you are. Connect with them! Read their blogs, comment, get to know each other. You’ll see the way these things are done in France, learn new vocabulary and improve your reading comprehension.
Hellocoton.fr - You can find different blogs on many topics.
4. Read blogs for French language learners
Many teachers now have their own blogs. You can find many useful resources to improve your language here:
5. Learn what is going on in France
If you want to be au courant de main news in French, but your level is not so high that you can read LeMonde.fr or LePoint.fr, then head to 1jour1actu.com. The site is originally created for students in school, but you will surely find something interesting for you as it explains in a very clear way all the important events happening in France. It is updated daily, and you can find articles, videos, picture quizzes, etc.
Music follows us everywhere. You don’t even need to buy it. All you need to do is just to find a singer you like, find the lyrics and sing. You’ll see that suddenly all those difficult grammar constructions will turn into familiar poetic phrases you’ve heard somewhere. And, then maybe you’ll discover that you have a talent for singing and become famous, thanks to French!
7. Use smartphone or tablet applications
It’s essential to study the language you learn daily. You can always find a bit of time to practice and with a mobile device which you always have at hand it is much easier to do.
To practice vocabulary, use Quizlet. You’ll find lots of vocabulary sets already made by other users or you can create one yourself. You have three ways of learning new words: flashcards, translation and matching.
Le Bon Mot French, Busuu, French Course - Teach Yourself provides you with full lessons for beginner and intermediate levels. You’ll learn vocabulary, grammar and will do tests to check your understanding.
Fun Easy Learn - Francais allows you to learn french vocabulary with several types of exercises. To achieve higher levels you need to complete the basic level. This app is translated in many languages.
To test your grammar you can use efTeacher-apprendre français, Améliorez votre francais, Grammaire Française, French Practice Test
To learn verb conjugations use French Verb Master (several types of exercises),
To watch news videos with exercises for them use 7 jours sur la planète.
8. Listen to Podcasts
There are many podcasts designed for learners of French language. You can listen to them for free, but will have to pay for additional materials.
For beginners, everyday conversations: PodcastFrancaisFacile
For all levels: LearnFrenchByPodcast.com
DailyFrenchPod is updated daily, gives you a short piece of news with grammar and vocabulary explications and a real life dialogue once a week.
If your level is intermediate or advanced, you can listen to radio podcasts:
You can also use a Radio France Podcast app.
9. Make use of sites with multiple resources
rfi.fr langue francaise - you will find many listening and vocabulary exercises here.
TV5Monde provides you with videos and exercises for different levels.
10. Use Social Networks
Joining Groups like J’aime le français or Learn french with LKL or following your favourite French actor, singer, politician, writer, etc on Facebook or Twitter can also be useful in learning French.
For example, you can follow Dany Boon on Facebook.
Now you have lots of tools for learning French by yourself. But, it is still a good idea to take classes with a teacher from time to time to make sure you are moving in the right direction and to help you clarify difficult issues. Enjoy!