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How to Rekindle Your French Studies

Camille Chevalier-Karfis By Camille Chevalier-Karfis on May 3, 2020

You’ve studied French before but somehow stopped. It’s OK, it happens to the best of us! Here are my tips to rekindle your French studies.

As I write this article, many of you are at home right now because of the Coronavirus. I hope you and your loved ones are safe.

Many of you have some time on your hands. I received a massive number of emails asking me for advice on how to rekindle your French studies. So I decided to write an article about it.

1 – A Fresh Start in Studying French

Maybe at one point you had a French routine. It’s OK if you’ve “fallen off the wagon”. It happen to us all at one time (or many times…).

What’s important is today. Today, you can change whatever you want to change. Take it one day at a time, don’t think of tomorrow or how long it will take you to achieve your French goal. 

2 – Figure out Your French Level and Goals

What are your goals? Do you really need to know the French subjunctive right now? Wouldn’t your time be better spent studying how to handle questions in fast French? Or terms used in everyday interactions? 

You may want to start by taking my French level test – it concentrates on listening/comprehension so it’s particularly useful for people who are learning French to communicate and not just to pass French exams.

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3 – Find the Right French Method

There are tons of French learning materials out there, and deciding on the right method for you may take a bit of research… Perfect, you have time! 

You should pick a method that fits your goal and personal situation. If you already speak Spanish for example, the logic of French grammar is going to be obvious to you since it’s the same as in Spanish. You can learn from “fun” stuff and focus on the accent and the vocabulary… 

If you only speak English, you need a method that explains French grammar in English (so you understand the explanations). Studying with fun videos or apps with no grammar explanations is probably not going to work.​ It may be a fun way to learn some new vocabulary, but don’t overlook the importance of grammar in French, nor the benefit of having a structured approached.

This article may help: pros and cons of the various French learning methods.

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4 – Study French a Bit Regularly

When it comes to studying French, most students will have a better result by studying a bit every day or several times a week – say, half an hour to one hour – rather than once a week for three hours in one sitting.​​

5 – Repetition is the Key to French

That’s my motto. You may know the logic, this doesn’t mean you can apply it without thinking. We are not robots. It’s not because we’ve learned something once that we can remember it / apply it perfectly. So don’t hesitate to review and revise. 

​Starting with a lower level, something that’s a bit on the easy side for you is a good way to realise how much you already know and rekindle your confidence for studying French.

Remember, all long-term changes start with today. Its’ amazing what you can accomplish one day at a time… I recorded 33 hours of French verb drills… The way I did it: half an hour per day. Taking it one day at a time. 

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