Learning French

Jun 28, 2007
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unusually , for me and the wife , we're thinking ahead and either next year or the year after we want to start to holiday in France.

However my French language skills were fully left behind when I left school 26 years ago. Apart from the odd Del Boy phrases (mange tout Rodney!!) I'd be a Brit abroad.

My question is: whats the easiest way to pick up some basic French?. We dont have time for proper lessons at evening class and the PC Learn French CD I purchased last year was rubbish.

I want to be able to get by with some basics as I hate being ignorant.

any advice
 
Dec 14, 2006
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Over the years my French has gone from almost none, to being able to deal with most situations. I've never had a problem. If you try even the most basic conversation in French you usually find that people immediately reply to you in English (even at a very basic level). For normal stuff - like booking in a campsite, ordering a meal, etc., in the tourist areas you should have no problems at all.

The best way to pick it up is to go to France, and just try. The BBC website is also pretty good - but you have to be dedicated and make time to use it.
 
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Feb 17, 2007
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For making written enquiries/bookings and so on I use the translating site www.reverso.net. However you need to be wary - it translates pitch, as in caravan pitch, as 'lancement' as in throw, launch or even pitch a ball. Rather like satnav, a great tool but needs some care. Otherwise, as has been said, if you try most French people are eager to meet more than half way.
 
Feb 14, 2008
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I bought a CD course that I play in the car, helps enormously with the pronunciation. (First I borrowed one from the library, to see how well I got on with it)
 
Jun 12, 2006
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Michel Thomas is apparently very good, stickk the cd in your car and you'll pick it up prety qiuck.
 
Mar 26, 2008
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Dr Blair's (nothing to do with Tony) Audio courses available from www.audio.co.uk.

Download and play via mp3 as I drive. It works for me.

Talking books when driving make a change from the radio as well.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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have a look at www.earwormslearning.co.uk They have CDs which have a quite different approach than most - don't bother you with grammar early on. I found the Spanish discs excellent but have not actually looked at the French. You can get a short demo on-line for free. Load the cds into an MP3 player and listen when relaxed e.g. just before going to sleep.

Oh - you need to disable any pop-up blocker you may have on your computer before the site will download correctly - or you did need to last time i looked which was some months ago.
 
Jan 28, 2008
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Hi Roger

I am just learning Italian for work reasons, but can recommend www.bbc.co.uk/languages/french as a good starting point.

Our tutor recommends it to support what she teaches. I have tried the Italian site and it is pretty good.

Cheers

David
 
Nov 16, 2015
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A very old thread, but maybe helpfull or some folks.
We have used Duo lingo, for French, I then concentrated on Duolingo for German, with the boss more on the French.
And all free on line. Accent is also good.
 
Nov 11, 2009
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A very old thread, but maybe helpfull or some folks.
We have used Duo lingo, for French, I then concentrated on Duolingo for German, with the boss more on the French.
And all free on line. Accent is also good.
I find iPhone translate works a treat even for Swahili 😂
 
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Oct 8, 2006
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We stayed with my b-in-l in Paris some years ago. His advice was to try to speak schoolboy French, use present tense rather than trying to work out the future and past participles and you will get by. The French will happily meet you half way and if they see you struggling they will reciprocate and try their schoolboy English, but as noted above many French now speak quite good English - usually better than our French!!
 
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Nov 11, 2009
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We stayed with my b-in-l in Paris some years ago. His advice was to try to speak schoolboy French, use present tense rather than trying to work out the future and past participles and you will get by. The French will happily meet you half way and if they see you struggling they will reciprocate and try their schoolboy English, but as noted above many French now speak quite good English - usually better than our French!!

I would venture to suggest that there are a significant majority who would not even know what a “participle” is.
 
Jan 3, 2012
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The only french i know so far is this bon jour in english good morning
 
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Sam Vimes

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Sep 7, 2020
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Scientists have for years, using things like the Large Hadron Collider, been taking atoms and breaking them into smaller 'participles'.

On some consonants they have taken a vowel not to 'split infinitives'. Anyone found disobeying this rule will be subjected to forty exclamation marks with a 'dipthong'

:)
 
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Nov 11, 2009
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The only french i know so far is this bon jour in english good morning
Scientists have for years, using things like the Large Hadron Collider, been taking atoms and breaking them into smaller 'participles'.

On some consonants they have taken a vowel not to 'split infinitives'. Anyone found disobeying this rule will be subjected to forty exclamation marks with a 'dipthong'

:)
”diphthong” is that foot wear for a thick Aussie?
 
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Feb 13, 2022
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I'd like to learn a bit of Welsh, just for fun. Although in the part of Wales I'm in it wouldn't get me far! Actually heard couple talking Welsh in Haverfordwest Morrisons yesterday, quite unusual around here. I know a few bits and bobs.

Bore da= hello

Pryn hawn da = Good afternoon

nos waiith dda = Good Evening

diolch yn fawr = Thankyou very much

And no doubt everyone who has been to Wales knows araf and dim parcio.

That's tonight's Welsh lesson over with, on a thread about speaking French...
 
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Jul 30, 2022
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I'd like to learn a bit of Welsh, just for fun. Although in the part of Wales I'm in it wouldn't get me far! Actually heard couple talking Welsh in Haverfordwest Morrisons yesterday, quite unusual around here. I know a few bits and bobs.

Bore da= hello

Pryn hawn da = Good afternoon

nos waiith dda = Good Evening

diolch yn fawr = Thankyou very much

And no doubt everyone who has been to Wales knows araf and dim parcio.

That's tonight's Welsh lesson over with, on a thread about speaking French...
Wales language will not be hard to learn if you know English. But French is hard. I study it in parallel with my college studies. Also I found personal statement help, use https://writix.com/personal-statement-help for that. Without outside help, I would hardly have been able to devote time to French. But I certainly have a very difficult language.
I rarely hear from someone that he wants to learn the Wales language)
 
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