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General Chat Thread, Best method of learning French... in General; I do a fair bit of travelling now with my job ( just got back from Milan ) but feel ...
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    mattx's Avatar
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    Best method of learning French...

    I do a fair bit of travelling now with my job ( just got back from Milan ) but feel things could be better for me If was to at least fry and learn French as that seems to be the next common language spoken when dealing with people. I dropped languages at school so really need to start off at a beginners level.
    I would appreciate some pointers you feel as the best approach. I will be looking to start some possible night school classes if time permits but would also like some ideas on self tuition.
    Merci.

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    DT2
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    I found Rosetta Stone works really well. My kids picked it up in no time. I think it's good, but didn't really work for me.
    There are some good french courses available that you can load onto your ipod etc, but maybe a night class would help?
    Self learning is all well and good, but particularly in french the grammar is difficult to grasp without any kind of help.
    I started french when I was 4, so to me it's easy to expand upon existing knowledge.

    DT

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    mattx (20th December 2011)

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    Jawloms's Avatar
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    Never tried it and I don't know how practical it is to actually do, but the best way to learn any language is song. You find a song in French, and the English translation and get singing!! You pick up the grammer more easily, and you have the repitition of the phrases in a more memorable way. It's why kids learn the alphabet song.

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    mattx (20th December 2011)

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    Earworms is supposed to be really good, it works on a system (as with the poster above) of setting things to music, like an ad or jingle ... Earworms - Learn a new language, quickly and easily with music ::.

    I have the Spanish one ... just haven't got round to using it yet. You can get it as a phone app as well.

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    mattx (20th December 2011)

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    If was to at least fry and learn French
    I'd start with English first Matt

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    36Degrees (20th December 2011), elsiegee40 (20th December 2011), mattx (20th December 2011)

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    CPLTD's Avatar
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    I've been studying Spanish for some time now, the Michel Thomas method is superb.

    I haven't tried la Francais, hopefully the male learner doesn't sound like CJ from Eggheads (as with the Spanish)

    The thought of his face makes me violent.

    Joe

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    mattx (20th December 2011)

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    Oaktech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by laserblazer View Post
    I'd start with English first Matt
    Ah, see, thats nothing to do with learning english, and everything to do with learning to type! For which we all know Mavis Beacon and a load of practice is the answer!

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    mattx (20th December 2011)

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    A night course to grasp the basics (Alphabet, numbers, grammar, tenses) and then use a self learning program after. Resetta stone is a good one to use.

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    mattx (20th December 2011)

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    mattx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by laserblazer View Post
    I'd start with English first Matt
    Very true....was typing late on my touchpad - that's the excuse I'm using anyhoo....... ;-)

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    I'm trying to learn Portuguese but it must be one of the hardest European languages. Old dogs and new tricks come to mind. I've decided to do it like a baby learns and concentrate on nouns first. Simply saying "cerveja por favor " should get the message across.

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    If you know Portuguese, you can easily transfer it to Romanian, they are oddly pretty similar, as they are undiluted Latin varients (compared to spanish / french / italian which have been diluted a fair bit)!

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    A few years ago the Independent did a language course giveaway, I think they do it every couple of years in various formats but this particular promo was a "First 100 words in..." series. I'm racking my brains to try and remember the name of the lady who produced it, if I can find the CD I'll post her name (I think it was Elizabeth something), but the point was it was really well structured.

    In this instance I listended to the Spanish one but it was set as a role play, a guy like you wanting to learn a bit to make his travels more interesting, on a plane journey with (handily) somone who happend to speak fluent Spanish. I listended to it in the car on the commute to work and although it was a few years ago, I still remember more Spanish from this than I did of French from 4 years at GCSE. I'd highly recommend trying this way, although we all learn differently the conversational format worked much better for me than the structured learning approach. It gave you key words in normal situations, like asking and understanding directions, "where is the bank/toilet?", in a resteraunt etc etc. I can still say "I like to climb on the rocks and dance at the disco in German but I can't say I've ever had cause to use it.

    From here, I had a poke round itunes and found a load of people doing podcasts for languages (often in French Canadian accents!!) to take my vocab a bit further. In contrast to this, a year or so later, the paper did another language course giveaway, but a more sturctured approach. I still play the "Teach yourself Mandarin" CD every now and again to see if perhaps this time I can get past the first lesson, "introducing yourself" but 4 years on, every attempt is still resulting in a big fail!

    I'll see if I can find the Spanish disc and get the ladies name, I remember she does French, german and Russian I think.
    D

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    Oaktech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by laserblazer View Post
    I'm trying to learn Portuguese but it must be one of the hardest European languages. Old dogs and new tricks come to mind. I've decided to do it like a baby learns and concentrate on nouns first. Simply saying "cerveja por favor " should get the message across.
    I can order beer in about 15 different languages... but thats all. it's been pretty good to me so far!

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    gwendes's Avatar
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    I recommend busuu.com. Combine that with moving to France and you're sorted. My friend was fluent in 6 months

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    I learned French up until 14, then dropped it as part of what is now year 9/10 options, whatever.

    Fifteen years later, I went travelling and odd-jobbing round France for the best part of a year, and came back fluent.

    It worked for me.


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