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Thread: French

  1. #1
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    French

    Anybody have any suggestions for the best way to learn French?

    Anybody try the mass marketed Rosetta Stone? Seems pricey.

    I would love to know as much French as the sweetest SP's know English. Just enough to get by.

    My pronunciation is horrible.

    Any good web sites?

    S'il vous plait.

    Merci.
    Discovery consists of seeing what everybody has seen
    and thinking what nobody has thought.

  2. #2
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    I know french is harder than english, but i learned english in 2 stage. First i did the basic in school, like every guy, but i was awfull, i didn't even pass my 4th secondary. Then i started playing online with a game that was using keyboard(exemple diablo 2, even if it was not this game, this one is more well known) Got some english buddies to play with them before knowing on wich server the french dudes where playing, and learn it that way. When i didn't understand a word, they would say it in a different manner. Also helped that i got a girlfriend who was bilingual later on that game, she had lots of english friends and she could translate the things i didn't understand. Thats how i got it, and this day i still got an accent, and honestly i don't care as i don't need to speak like an american, but i know 98% of the words... and can dialogue all i want.

    So my advice would be to hang out with french dudes that can speak english...
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  3. #3
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    You could buy a quantity of DVD movies and activate its subtitles, listening in English and reading french subtitles, or listening in French and reading English subtitles. While not the best way to learn as what is spoken deviates greatly from the written subtitle, I think it is an inexpensive primer that will eventually open many doors. I almost forgot to mention, you can also listen to a bit of french-spoken dialogue while reading it in french subtitles, and repeating ad nauseum from the comfort of your home...

    I recommend family movies to start with, as they generally have simpler dialogue...
    Last edited by shijak; 11-18-2009 at 09:53 AM.

  4. #4
    I have a couple of things you can add to Shijak's suggestion...

    Read a French newspaper. Start with something simple like the sports section where you are familiar with the equivalent English articles in an English paper. You could also watch some French television to help with pronunciation. Try to watch shows where you enjoy the subject matter or US shows you like that are translated into French. Or you can rent DVD versions of your favourite shows and watch them first in one language and then the other. You may find 30 minute sitcoms to be better suited to this than complex dramas. Look for shows and movies that have been dubbed here in Quebec, not France.

    You can also try reading the French posts here on MERB and put them through an on-line translator after to see if you can put it all together so that it makes sense to you.

    If you decide to try a home learning French course, also try to find one that is geared to Quebec, not France.

    Good luck!
    And the Lord said unto John, "Come forth and receive eternal life." But John came fifth and won a toaster.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Techman View Post

    You can also try reading the French posts here on MERB and put them through an on-line translator after to see if you can put it all together so that it makes sense to you.

    Good luck!
    Hello Techman,

    I've tried this many times with many different translating systems. It works fairly well, but there are some times when what the translator gives back is just mush. From what I understand from some French-Canadian friends, this is due to the inadequacies of the translators and the lesser skills of some writers. Just as with the English not all skills are equal and will distort translations for already inadequate translators. But, a discerning reader can make good use of this method.

    Cheers,

    Merlot

  6. #6

    Podcasts

    Here is a website that has free podcasts that you can download to iPod, MS Zune, or your computer. The lesson are 15 - 20 minutes long. It is a mix of grammar and situational phrases.


    http://www.coffeebreakfrench.com

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by shijak View Post
    You could buy a quantity of DVD movies and activate its subtitles, listening in English and reading french subtitles, or listening in French and reading English subtitles. While not the best way to learn as what is spoken deviates greatly from the written subtitle, I think it is an inexpensive primer that will eventually open many doors. I almost forgot to mention, you can also listen to a bit of french-spoken dialogue while reading it in french subtitles, and repeating ad nauseum from the comfort of your home...

    I recommend family movies to start with, as they generally have simpler dialogue...
    This is a fantastic idea. I'm going to try it myself.

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