How often has this happened to you? You eventually gather the courage to speak French – whether it is calling the bank, ordering food, or initiating a conversation with friends. Feeling ready & rehearsed you begin to speak and then suddenly… you freeze, and go totally blank?
In this post, we are going to share a few honest insights as to why you are unable to speak French confidently even after hours of French lessons.
You need more conversational practice:
Learning French or any other language requires practice and you need to work on it every single day to notice results. There are no quick fixes. If you are feeling too shy to speak French, that means you need more practice. Often students focus too much on textbooks and grammar and don’t practice their ear, or conversational skills.
You don’t push yourself to speak:
When someone approaches you in the store or restaurant – do you switch to English? Or, if the waiter switches to English do you stay in French, or switch to English too? Switching to English is more convenient for you, but by staying only in your comfort zone you are never going to progress. When mastering the French language is your main goal, try to speak French first. So even if the waiter changes languages, you stick to your French.
Sounds simple: Take notes in class
Even if you feel that you comprehend what’s happening in your French class, your brain will fail to recall it if you don’t assist your brain in processing the information. Research shows that writing stuff down is the secret to long-term memorization. So, this rule is applicable when you are learning French as well.
You are not repeating words out loud:
You may understand everything you are reading in the French Book or everything they are saying on the French TV show you are watching, but if you are not challenging your ears to learn new vocabulary. Of course hearing words and internalizing them is one of the most important aspects of speaking french conversationally.
You don’t practice on your own:
When learning French is your main goal, you need to practice on your own & independently as well. That does not mean just re-writing notes & studying. We mean full-on speaking to yourself in French. Though it sounds a little strange, its actually a great method to develop fluency. Think in French, speak in French, record French vlogs or voice notes. You can build a French speaking habit that way.
If you are looking to join a thriving community of French learners, Strømmen has you covered. Our French Classes in Los Angeles are hosted by some of the best French tutors in the industry. Sign up for private French classes for a more catered and flexible experience!