Le groupe français 2016 - 2019 Les Voyageurs

An area with study groups for various languages. Group members help each other, share resources and experience. Study groups are permanent but the members rotate and change.
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zjones
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby zjones » Mon Aug 20, 2018 8:57 pm

bretagne wrote:Pronunciation Training?

Hi everyone - I have some questions about self-studying French pronunciation that I hope to get help with. I'm trying to find a good 'method' to getting my english mouth to get use to making french sounds. A big challenge is the r!

Can anyone suggest how I could make use of 15-30 minutes per day to focus on pronunciation improvement? (This would form part of my present 2-3 hour french learning which consists of some TV & radio news, reading, assimil with ease and clozemaster).


I've heard the FSI course is good, so I'm sure you can't go wrong with that. However, I found it really dry, so I chose to use this short course from the University of Michigan: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cc_X4Ho ... 3dxwP&t=0s. I worked on it for about 10 minutes each day (2-3 videos) and finished it in a few weeks. However, I learned the French R as a child, so I can't tell you how useful that part will be. The vowel part was indispensable for me.

You could always try something like this YouTube course as an overview, and then follow up with the FSI French Phonology course.
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bretagne
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby bretagne » Tue Aug 21, 2018 8:40 am

zjones wrote: I chose to use this short course from the University of Michigan: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cc_X4Ho ... 3dxwP&t=0s.

Speakeasy wrote:bretagne, I suggest that you consider using the "FSI French Phonology course" as a supplement to your current studies.

Thanks to both of you. I will try both out. Today, I gave the University of Michigan videos a try for about an hour and my mouth hurts, which is a good sign I guess!
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1: 666 / 10000 Clozemaster 10,000 French Fluency Fast Track Cards
2: 11 / 100 Assimil New French with Ease (100 lessons)

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Carmody
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby Carmody » Fri Aug 24, 2018 6:19 pm

So, now that I am at the B1 level in my French studies, I seem at a total loss to understand the spoken language at the regular speed. In understanding conversational French I am at the A2 level at best. However, I do continue to try and persevere and one of my sources is the Public Sénat website which has conversations that I am able to struggle through with.

Also of help is its Livres & Vous programs which has conversations with authors on their books.And if you click on the cc or translation icon you will get a lot of help with French subtitres. Here is one show that I caught today:

Philosopher, peut-il consoler ? - Livres & Vous... (13/04/2018)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xwuAEYDZq4M

Being caught in this intermediate no-man's land with need for native resources is tough. Movies and the usual TV sitcoms, mystery and detective shows are just too fast for me and a waste of time. Looks like I need to spend more time time with L'Avis de Marie and other podcasts. Marie is wonderful.

http://www.podclub.ch/fr/emissions/l-avis-de-marie-f
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Speakeasy
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby Speakeasy » Fri Aug 24, 2018 8:34 pm

Carmody, thank you very much for your honest and heartfelt expression of the difficulties and frustrations associated with studying a second language. Despite the misleading advertising of most publishers of language courses, your experience is actually quite common.

If it is any consolation to you, in the preface of one of my older A2-B1 German courses, the author, in a refreshing display of truthfulness, wrote: “Do not expect to be able to understand native speakers upon completion of this course. That is not the goal of this course, they speak far too quickly and they use language that you will not have been introduced to either in this or in any other course at this level. The purpose of this course is to help you be understood by them …”

You have made great progress. I am very confident that you will continue develop your skills in French. Vas-y, t’es capable!

EDITED
Formatting
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zjones
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby zjones » Fri Aug 24, 2018 11:31 pm

Carmody, I understand your frustration. I think I am a little behind you in my French, but I feel stuck in the "no man's land" (as you put it so eloquently) where I need French exposure but I am having trouble finding the resources to work on it. I just wanted you to know that you're not alone!
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Carmody
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby Carmody » Fri Aug 24, 2018 11:42 pm

Speakeasy

Thank you so much; coming from you with your experience that is especially appreciated.
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Cavesa
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby Cavesa » Sat Aug 25, 2018 7:07 pm

Carmody wrote:So, now that I am at the B1 level in my French studies, I seem at a total loss to understand the spoken language at the regular speed. In understanding conversational French I am at the A2 level at best. However, I do continue to try and persevere and one of my sources is the Public Sénat website which has conversations that I am able to struggle through with.
...
Being caught in this intermediate no-man's land with need for native resources is tough. Movies and the usual TV sitcoms, mystery and detective shows are just too fast for me and a waste of time. Looks like I need to spend more time time with L'Avis de Marie and other podcasts. Marie is wonderful.


Speakeasy wrote:Carmody, thank you very much for your honest and heartfelt expression of the difficulties and frustrations associated with studying a second language. Despite the misleading advertising of most publishers of language courses, your experience is actually quite common.

If it is any consolation to you, in the preface of one of my older A2-B1 German courses, the author, in a refreshing display of truthfulness, wrote: “Do not expect to be able to understand native speakers upon completion of this course. That is not the goal of this course, they speak far too quickly and they use language that you will not have been introduced to either in this or in any other course at this level. The purpose of this course is to help you be understood by them …”


Exactly. You are not supposed to understand full speed French at B1, you are doing just fine. I don't know where this sudden trend comes from, people expecting the impossible at the early levels. I've even seen beginners after a few units of a beginner course complaining on reddit or duolingo about not understanding full speed natives. Really, don't worry about it :-)

I was understanding the normal natives quite well and the original tv series almost not at all at B2, so imagine how useless at the full speed French would I have been at B1, had I tried. B1 is simply not C1. There is no reason to feel discouraged, you are doing really well, you just need to keep going.

I recommend starting with easier stuff and improving from there. The audiobooks are awesome and you will surely find something suitable for you. Graded readers (which some publishers add a CD to) still have a place in a B1 learner's regime. Easier stuff like RFI programs for learners. Lyricstraining. If you really want to take a faster and steeper learning curve of a tv series, get a good quality dubbing of something you know well in Enlish and/or study the transcript before watching.

And a coursebook with lots of audio chosen for your level could help too. I think Édito by Didier could be a nice choice (it even comes with a DVD that looks promising, stuff like that wasn't available back when I was at that level), or some of the DELF preparation books (those are the absolutely most precise sources of stuff you should know at the level and as natural as possible at that level). Or practice books like this https://www.cle-international.com/comprehension-orale-2-niveau-b1-livre-cd-2eme-edition-9782090380057.html or online material of the same kind. Many learners underestimate the resources actually meant for them. I would say the CD coming with a coursebook is the most underestimated and underused part of it, and I used to make this mistake too and wasted lots of time looking elsewhere. It is popular these days to bash textbooks and accuse them of being unnatural and actually harmful to learners and far away from the real life. This is not true anymore. Anyone doing a bit of research on what to buy is bound to find something good. There is no need to reinvent the wheel.

The French teaching resources have improved immensely during the last ten years. The complaints were completely founded back when crap courses like Panorama were the newest and most popular ones in classes and when it was normal to pay twice as much for the separate CDs (or cassettes) than for the coursebook itself. And the internet was still rather new. Nowadays, it is not so.
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Carmody
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby Carmody » Mon Aug 27, 2018 2:15 am

Cavesa
Thank you so very much for writing in such comprehensive detail; it is greatly appreciated.
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Carmody
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby Carmody » Mon Aug 27, 2018 2:22 am

Ok, I am one of the very few people that is not attracted to mysteries, detective stories or sci-fi. Instead I do a lot of listening to a lot of different sources and one of them is documentaries on gardening that I love but that bore most everyone else.

The following is an excellent documentary on gardening that I found well worth the time:

La passion des jardins - Documentaire
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OcY5EpPSPdE
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Klara
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby Klara » Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:44 am

If you like gardening, then you might have a look at this podcast by franceinfo:

https://www.francetvinfo.fr/replay-radio/jardin/

Twice a week they present "Jardin", about two minutes long and with a transcript below the podcast picture. I find the voices quite pleasing.

Enjoy ;)
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