lysi wrote:PeterMollenburg wrote:I'm not one to hold imaginary conversations either. I'd sit down, do my study and work the pronunciation hard with every single word.
Absolutely disagree. French orthography is actually very consistent in knowing how to pronounce a word from how it's spelled, but not about how to spell a word from how it's pronounced, so as a learner you don't have need to know how to pronounce every single word. Sure, it's important to work on pronunciation but you don't need to work on every single word.
I agree. I don't look up the pronunciation of every word either, since exactly as you say, French orthography is very consistent.
Firstly, I was speaking about a novice learner in terms of pronunciation where one learns to recognise those predictable orthographical patterns in the beginning stages. So, agreed, once the patterns are discovered, pronunciation of every single word is definitely not necessary. However, to encourage oneself to produce the language not only accurately but frequently in varied word combinations and on varied topics, that is to develop well-rounded output or put simply 'speak', then regular practise, I found is definitely not a bad thing, especially if access to native speakers is not a frequent occurence.
I'm not suggesting that French orthography is a nightmare, I'm providing my experience on improving output and pronunciation. The "every single word" comment is more relevant to the earlier stages of learning French where some learners might avoid speaking aloud or get lazy with their pronunciation. I'm encoraging some focused and consistent hard work. Break down the patterns of pronunciation and develop those muscles.
For me, even once well beyond the beginning stages of any language, I find speaking aloud is good for keeping one's pronunciation on track as well as simulating some kind of output. This isn't everyone's cup of tea or preferred method, of course.
After one recognises the patterns of French pronunciation (which phonemes are represented by which orthography) and has French pronunciation well understood it's not about the perceived difficulty of the pronunciation of the language but about keeping up some good habits to practise output. Speaking aloud becomes more about reinforcement, developing habit or consistent output based on good pronunciation learned from the beginning much like a familiar daily exercise in which keeping fit is important as well as good technique.
Speaking with conversational partners could be just as useful if not better, but I was speaking from experience in that I had no-one to speak with or in truth very rarely. Thus, there's a lot of value (in my opinion) in speaking every word aloud so that when you do speak with someone, you've practised (or simulated) a good deal and are primed for conversation. It might not flow perfectly but at least you'll have spoken most of the words you employ multiple times before.