10 ways to practice your French independently

10 ways to practice your French independently

Keeping up, or even improving French by yourself and for free is possible! 10 ideas that give excellent results.

Whether you learned French easily and quickly or whether it was with great difficulty, it would be a shame to lose all that knowledge! We give you 10 tips for practicing French by yourself.

1. Set short-term goals

Tackle the challenge of learning one idiomatic expression per day or three irregular verbs per week, or ten new words per weekend. Then, monitor your progress by evaluating yourself.

2. Watch movies

Choose movies or series in French, of course. Depending on your level, in order to get used to things, you can listen to the soundtrack in French and read the subtitles at the same time, or conversely, hide the bottom of the screen so you can’t see them.

3. Listen to the radio

Listen to the radio in French, whether you’re in the car, on the bus or the subway, going to and from work. You can also tune your clock radio to France Inter for a truly French wake-up moment or perhaps enjoy listening to the radio in French last thing at night, at bedtime.

4. Read

You can keep in touch with a language by reading. For information about world events, you can check out French newspapers on the Internet, such as Le Monde or Le Figaro. Take part in the online discussions and comments posted about these articles. Another option is to read documentation in French on the topics which interest you.

5. Read ‘with your ears’

Download some audiobooks on your cell phone and enjoy hearing novels read aloud in French without having to read them. You can also find audio books which will help you with your professional training or teach you more about a topic you’re passionate about.

6. Listen and read at the same time

Try to find texts that can you can read and listen to simultaneously, such as poems, stories, plays, political speeches (newspapers often publish transcripts of speeches), etc. You can follow what you’re listening to as you read, or you can record yourself and then compare the two versions. This is an excellent language course you can follow at home for free!

7. Improve your pronunciation

Download a program that lets you listen to a French word onto your cell phone so that you can learn how to pronounce it. And when you find a new word, listen to it and repeat it. Here, you can also record yourself and compare your version with the version on the application.

8. Sing

If there is a free and unlimited resource available, this has to be music in French! Download all your favorite songs, find the lyrics, learn them and belt them out in the shower. In this way, you can learn new vocabulary and expressions as well as improve your pronunciation.

9. Talk to the mirror

If you’re not a music lover, don’t worry! Just set a date with your mirror and tell it about your day in French. You can also organise your day with the mirror in French as well.

10. Write

Write down your memory aids and your notes in French. You may well be surprised, because sometimes, the simplest and everyday things are the hardest to express.

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This article has been written by Mathieu

Mathieu was born in the French-speaking part of Switzerland. After studying Literature and Linguistic Research, he moved to Argentina where he is currently a translator and a web editor.