Learn French Online: Guide To Online Lessons

Frenchlearner.com is a leading reference to help you learn French online. Keep reading to learn about my most useful online French lessons. Bookmark this page as a starting point for finding resources for learning French (apps, software, online courses, tutors, etc.).

Learn French Online: Comprehensive guide to online lessons

Can I learn French with an app or software product?

Many people are convinced that it is possible to to learn to speak French fluently with applicaitons such as Babbel, Duolingo or software products such as Rosetta Stone. This is just not true.

While these types of products are very good for the very initial stages of learning (pronunciation, basic vocabulary, etc.), what you will learn is limited to the material contained with the lessons. Also, there is no live human being to provide much needed comments and feedback.

I have known Camille at Frenchtoday.com for many years and strongly recommend her A Moi Paris course. Camille’s audiobook course covers the beginner, intermediate and advanced levels and offers extremely helpful grammar explanations, pronunciation tips and vocabulary lessons.

I do suggest some other products for beginners. People who struggle with pronunciation can benefit greatly from Pimsleur. On this page I have written a complete and honest review of Pimsleur French. Here you can visit the Pimsleur French website.

Rosetta Stone offers a good starting point for visual learners. On this page I have written a complete and honest review of Rosetta Stone French. Here you can visit Rosetta Stone French’s website.

One other program worth look at is called FrenchPod101. This product is also very beneficial for visually-oriented students as it provides a series of videos. On this page I reviewed FrenchPod101 in great detail and on this page you can visit the FrenchPod101 website.

How can I find an online French tutor?

Finding an online teacher is a very good idea. I have been offering lessons online since the end of 2013 and seem to be the biggest help to upper-beginner and intermediate students.

I would say that getting a teacher for the very initial stages of learning French is not necessary. You can learn all basic greetings, phrases, numbers, alphabet etc. using YouTube.

That said, at a certain point the live teacher will become an invaluable tool because that individual can help with corrections, offer conversation practice, guidance and lesson plans, and shed light on the subtle and fun nuances of the language.

This page offers information about my private French lessons with testimonials. This page offers extensive information on where to find an online French tutor including sites such as italki.com.

How can I practice French conversation?

Finding ways to practice French conversation can be a big challenge for many students, especially at the intermediate level. On Frenchlearner.com I have written over 50 Q&A style conversations lessons covering a very wide variety of topics.

Many students have come to me over the years to practice conversation. These lessons offer students the opportunity to increase their vocabulary and solidify their grammar.

Students can also find French conversation partners on sites such as preply.com and italki.com.

Can I learn French fast in three months, six months or one year?

Many people ask me if it is possible to learn French in the span of three months, six months or one year. The answer is NO! Even if you are extremely gifted and talented in the area of language learning, the process of learning to speak a language fluently takes a lifetime.

Anybody who claims you can be fluent in 3 months is not telling the truth.

While some students are born with the gift and talent for learning language quickly and others struggle with extreme learning difficulties, most people are somewhere in the middle.

Based on my experience in learning languages (I speak 6+ languages including French), it takes an average student about one to two years to lay down a solid foundation.

This includes attaining knowledge of the basic grammar structures and learning a basic vocabulary.

In this article, I discover the possibilities of how to learn French fast.

Where can I study French in France?

One of the single best ways to learn French is to do an immersion holiday through a homestay with a real French family in France. The benefits of traveling to France and trying to speak French with the locals far exceed any work you could on the internet.

My friend, Camille, at Frenchtoday.com has done exceptional job providing a hand-selected list of homestay opportunities in France and vetting the actual hosts/teachers. I strongly recommend exploring Camille’s French Immersion In France program on Frenchtoday.com.

How can I use YouTube to learn French?

YouTube is a great starting point for those looking to learn French online. There are many well known YouTube French teachers with extensive and comprehensive channels.

The most famous YouTube French teacher is Alexa as in “Learn French With Alexa“. I often suggest her videos to my students as review for our online lessons.

I also like Geraldine’s channel, Comme Une Française. Geraldine’s strong point is her cultural explanations of the French language.

On this page you can read my comments on the top-10 YouTube channels for learning French.

How can I learn French with songs?

One fun approach to learning French is to use songs. No matter what your level, using songs is entertaining and a great way to pick up new vocabulary. One great resource on YouTube is a playlist of about 100 French songs with English subtitles.

On my site I have written out the lyrics and translations for many famous French songs including Edith Piaf’s “La Vie En Rose” and “Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien“. I also have an entire page covering the top French Christmas songs.

Should I bother learning French grammar?

Lots of people argue that learning grammar has no purpose and that it is best to just listen and repeat like a child. I totally disagree.

I feel that that learning the basic sentence structures is essential for learning to speak fluently and with minimal mistakes. This page offers a great starting point for learning the basics of French grammar.

If you feel that grammar is your weak area and already have some French under your belt, you might want to consider taking some of my private French lessons. I have helped lots of intermediate students with grammar using the following book: Practice Makes Perfect: Complete French All-in-One. Please contact me to discuss options.

How can I learn to read and pronounce French?

One of the single hardest parts about learning French is learning how to read and pronounce the words. This is largely because French is not a phonetic language and many of the letters which appear on the page are not pronounced. There are also several nasal sounds which require special attention.

Learning the reading rules correctly from the very beginning is crucial for success and makes learning down the road go much smoother and easier. I have helped hundreds of students over the years with mastering French pronunciation and reading.

You can contact me directly to discuss arranging a private lesson.

On this page you will find a table covering the French reading rules. The page also has an audio file so you can listen, repeat and learn.

In addition, you will see that Camille at Frenchtoday.com has created a wonderful audio course covering French pronunciation. In this course she does a great job providing precisely crafted pronunciation drills.

How can I learn the French alphabet?

Learning the French alphabet is an important step in the early stages of learning the language. While French uses the same alphabet as English, there are some distinct differences in how to pronounce the letters. In addition, there are a few letter combinations, such as the o and e appearing attached to each other as a single letter: “œ:.

This page covers the French alphabet and offers audio pronunciation for each letter.

How do I read French accents marks?

This French accents marks can be a big mystery for beginner students.

The two most common accent marks are the upward slanting line about the “é”. This is called l’accent aigu. The second most common accent is the downward slanting mark “è”. This is called l’accent grave. Other accents include the two dots over a vowel, for example: “ë” (this is called the tréma) and little hat over vowels “î” (this is called the circonflexe).

This page covers French accent marks in detail with pronunciation and offers lots of sample words.

How can I learn French vocabulary?

Building a solid base of vocabulary is essential to learning to speak French. This page is your gateway to learning French vocabulary. Here you will find an extensive list of tips and tricks for building vocabulary. I also suggest several less traditional learning tools such as using video (namely Netflix and an additional paid app).

Some of this site’s most popular vocabulary lists cover the following topics: The meaning of ‘Voulez-vous coucher avec moi?‘, color names, school subjects, food, jobs, body parts, the meaning of d’accord and animals.

How can I learn French verbs?

Learning the verbs and having a solid understanding of how verb conjugations and tenses work is absolutely essential to speaking fluently. This page offers a gateway to learning French verbs. You will find links to lessons to everything you need to know.

In particular, you will find tips for learning verbs, conjugation tables for the top-10 most common verbs with example sentences. You will also find a list of the top-100 most common verbs conjugated in the first-person singular (je) form in four different tenses.

What are regular verbs?

In the early stages of your learning you will want to master the three groups of regular verbs in the present tense. The three groups of regular verbs are based on the last two letters of the verbs in the ‘to’ or mother form.

The first group are regular -er verbs. This includes parler (to speak). The second group are regular -ir verbs. This group
includes finir (to finish). The third group are regular -re verbs.

This group includes vendre (to sell). By mastering the three groups of regular verbs you will be able to easily learn hundreds more verbs that follow the same conjugation patterns. This page covers the French regular verbs in great detail.

What are irregular verbs?

Irregular verbs are verbs that follow conjugation patterns other than the patterns of the regular -er, -ir and -re verbs.

The following pages cover present tense conjugations and offer sample sentences of the these four common irregular verbs: être (to be), avoir (to have), aller (to go), faire (to make, to do), devoir (must, have to).

This page covers conjugation patterns for groups of irregular verbs.

What is the passé composé?

The passé composé refers to the past tense in French. This is commonly the first form of the past that students learn before the imperfect (see below).

The passé composé is comprises two components: an auxiliary (helping) verb and a past participle. For example, j’ai parlé means I spoke.

While most French verbs used avoir (to have) auxiliary verb some verbs use être (to be). This page offers a detailed comprehensive guide to the passé composé.

What is the imparfait?

The imparfait, or imperfect is another French past tense. While the above passé composé is used to describe past one-off events, the imparfait is used to describe both events that used to occur or events which were occurring over a period of time.

This page describes how to form the imparfait and this page shows how to use the imparfait.

Learning the difference between the passé composé and imparfait can be challenging. I have helped many students to overcome this difficulty in my private lessons.

How do I describe the future in French?

In French there are two main ways to express the future: The futur proche (near future tense) and futur simple (future tense). The difference between two is the near future tense uses a conjugated form of aller plus an infinitive.

For example, ‘je vais manger’ means I’m going to eat. Using the futur simple, ‘je mangerai’ means I’m going to eat. This page covers both the French future tenses in detail.

What are some French greetings?

Learning the greetings is one of the first steps in the language learning process. In French, ‘bonjour‘ means hello and ‘salut‘ means both hi and goodbye.

Greetings can become complicated because there are formal and informal forms. For example ‘Comment vas-tu?’ and ‘Comment allez-vous?’ both mean how are you? This page covers French greetings in detail.

How can I learn the French numbers?

The French numbers 1-10 are very simple and easy to learn: un, deux, trois, quatre, cinq, etc. However the teens, numbers 60-79 and 80-99 can cause lots of confusion.

My page covering French numbers 1-100 and beyond offers lots of personal tips and mnemonic devices which will help you to learn the numbers easily.

How do I tell time and say the date?

Telling time and saying the date in French can be difficult. For telling time, it important to know all the numbers up to 23 because the French commonly use the 24-hour clock. For example, ‘Il est vingt-trois (23) heures’ means it is 11.00pm.

This page covers telling time in French in detail.

Saying the date is also complicated because the French reverse the day and month. For example, ‘Il est le 23 décembre’ means ‘It’s December 23’ and would be written 23/12.

This page covers saying the date in French, as well has the days of the week and months of the year.

How can I learn French idioms and expressions?

Learning idioms and expressions is essential to learning any foreign language. Expressions offer both opportunities for cultural exploration and vocabulary building.

On this page you will find explanation of 25 fun handpicked French expressions that you can use in everyday conversation.

In addition, French has a lot of expressions based off the verbs faire (to make, do) and prendre (to take). Here are pages covering faire expressions and prendre expressions.

Should I learn French slang?

While I feel that it is more important to master the fundamentals of French grammar and verb conjugations, I have always thought that it is a good idea to at least get a grasp of the slang.

This page offers an extensive list of French slang vocabulary. This list is broken down into user-friendly categories including people, professions, family, money and much more.

What are the French negation rules?

French has a very long list of negation rules. Basic negation requires that one wrap ne…pas around a verb. For example, ‘je ne mange pas’ means I do not eat. However, there are more complicated forms of negation were other words such as jamais (never) and rien (nothing) replace the word pas.

This page covers French negation rules in detail.

What are the rules for French adjectives?

Adjectives in French can be complicated because they must agree in gender (male and female) and number (singular and plural) with the noun they modify.

For example, un garçon intelligent (a smart boy) or une fille intelligente (an intelligent girl). Or for example, un homme riche (a rich man) or des hommes riches (rich men).

This page offers an extensive overview of rules for French adjectives.

How do the object pronouns work?

An object pronoun is a word that replaces a noun. For example, ‘I speak to Jean’ would be come ‘I speak to him’. In French this would be ‘Je parle à Jean -> Je lui parle’. Or for example, ‘I see the mountain’ would become ‘I see it’. In French this would be ‘Je vois la montagne -> Je la vois’.

This page covers direct object pronouns and this page covers indirect object pronouns.

Do I need to learn the French subjunctive?

Many students get frustrated and refuse to learn the subjunctive. The subjective is a mood used for expressing wish, emotion and doubt. It consists of two subjects on both sides of the word ‘que’. For example, ‘Je veux que tu fasses ton travail’ means ‘I want you to do your work’.

This page covers how to form the French subjunctive and this page covers how to use the French subjunctive.

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