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French Pronunciation

Many students learn to speak French just by trying to mimic the French sounds they hear. For sure, mimicking is important – and most my French pronunciation lessons come with audio recordings – yet knowing the rules of French pronunciation instead of guessing them would be a huge help, don’t you think?

Understand The Rules Of French Pronunciation

The French language follows many rules. You’ve learned French grammar. But have you ever learned the rules that dictate French pronunciation?

For example, an S between two vowels makes a Z sound. To keep the S sound, you need to double the S. (Poison ≠ poisson).

Learn The Right Moves

To help you improve your French pronunciation, I’ll explain clearly how to place your mouth, lips and tongue.

For example, the key to a perfect French R pronunciation is to have the back of your tongue high up, close to the roof of your mouth, like in English, but the tip of your tongue pressing against your lower teeth… Your tongue will form like a slide.

Study Both Traditional French and Modern Spoken French

You don’t speak the same way when making a presentation to the board of directors or when being at a barbecue with your friends, right?

French is the same. Except than the difference between everyday spoken French and formal French is even stronger than in English. It affects everything: the vocabulary you use but also the French pronunciation, the sentence structure…

You may not need or want to speak this way yourself, but you need to understand modern spoken French if you want to understand the French when they speak.

Improve Your French Accent

In this French pronunciation section, I’ll share many tips to help you improve your French accent.

Who Records the Audio on This Site?

The audio featured on French Today is mostly my voice: a Paris born and raised French woman in her late forties.

And now, let’s study French pronunciation!

Can You Understand Today’s Spoken French?

It’s not just slang. The French everybody speaks in France today is NOT the overly enunciated, extremely formal French usually taught to foreigners.