French tutoring - find French language help online
According to UK-based professor Colin Baker, more than a thousand published studies show that the best way to master French is through immersion education, where students are completely saturated with French throughout the day, not just for a few weekly lessons. If you want to know how to learn French fast, this is your ticket.
U.S. students may have a hard time participating in this type of program without attending a private immersion school or pursuing an education abroad. With rare exception, public schools don't offer serious French instruction until middle school or beyond. This can be an issue since, let's face it, French can be tricky. When classroom instruction just isn't enough, a French tutor can help.
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French curriculum: What you need to know
The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages notes that lack of funding and absence of public demand has limited early French language courses in the United States, particularly in K-12 schools. As a result, there is no common curriculum. C'est la vie. Still, most programs emphasize these concepts:
- Verb conjugation
- Sentence structure
- Grammatical rules
- History and culture
Beyond the basics
Knowing French words is one thing, saying them fluently is quite another. You must also learn how to effectively understand, read and write French. According to The College Board, successful French students do this: interpersonally, taking body language and inflection cues from another person; interpretively through text or media where there are no cues; and presentationally, without feedback. A skilled language tutor can help in all these areas.
Finding a great French tutor
Before beginning your search, consider your learning style. Are you a visual or auditory learner? Would you prefer a self-guided online tutoring program or scheduled, face-to-face instruction? Also consider your weakness: if pronunciation is your Achilles heel, for instance, a native French speaker can set you straight quickly.
Once you know what you are looking for, you can find the French help you need through these resources:
- Online tutor matching services. Tools such as our TutorFinder can help you find a tutor either locally or online.
- Library programs. Public libraries often have programs providing kids homework help, especially elementary and high school tutoring. Live Homework Help® is available through libraries throughout the country.
- Peer-tutoring arrangements. Many schools offer formal peer tutoring services, but an informal arrangement--say, begging your French-savvy classmate for help--can be equally effective. Arrange a tutoring swap to limit cost.
- Local and online tutoring centers. Both brick-and-mortar and online tutoring services can provide you with French help, typically from certified instructors.
- Free online help: BBC online offers a site dedicated to offering basic French help to visitors. You can test your French, have access to French resources and worksheets, and even sign up to receive weekly French email tips.
Learning French has its benefits. According to the ACTFL, learning another language can improve your job options, your memory and even your GPA. Improving your foreign language skills can boost both you grades and self confidence.