Learn French Now - Choose The Best Learning Package
I am a French teacher who works to help others learn the beautiful language, Francais. I know how hard it can be to learn a new language, and I also know how much success depends on having the right learning tools.
As a French teacher, one question I am often asked is what learning package is the best for adults or teens wishing to learn French from home. Long ago I set out to find the answer to this question, and one thing really surprised me when I did. There are too many French learning packages out there that simply aren't good enough.
When you look at the tools available on the web, you'll find software, books, flash-card programs, and more. Sorting through them all is difficult, and choosing one can be even more intimidating. Before we get to my thoughts on any French programs let's first talk about what a French learning package is and isn't.
First, a digital learning package is NOT the only thing you need to master French. You also need to take the time to read French publications, to speak to French-speaking individuals, and to make learning (and speaking) French a part of your daily life. I can't stress how important this is to speed up the learning process.
Second, NOT everyone needs a French learning package. In fact, if you aren't dedicated to learning the language you likely won't learn anyway. Learning French isn't hard if you apply yourself, but you need to make the decision right now that you are going to spend some time each day learning.
Third, a French learning program, IS the simplest way to get started with the language. It will also cost much less (and take less time) than taking beginners lessons from a community college. The best learning packages can take you right from beginner to advanced French.
Fourth, if don't take the time to choose the right learning package you will only make learning French harder. This is actually the number one reason people don't follow through with their plan to master the language. Too many of the tools out there are really just a waste of money.
If you've been thinking of learning French then you'll be pleased to hear that, along with some of my colleagues, we took the time to evaluate the top four French learning packages available today. We based our evaluations on the following criteria.
Level of French Learning - A good French program should cover everything right from beginning levels up to having basic conversations with native French speakers.
Amount of Content - The amount of learning material included in the package
Teaching Techniques - Many people retain information better when taught with different methods. A good French program should use a variety of methods for teaching/retention.
Follow Up Material - Beyond the basic course is there more material available to take your learning further?
Additional Content (Fun Factor) - A good learning package should be fun to use. The best programs we evaluated included games that increased retention and made learning fun.
Basic Language Skills - Does the program give enough content (and teach it fast enough) that the learner could grasp a basic conversation after using the program for a while.
Reading/Writing Skills - Along with speaking does the program teach language/grammar for reading and writing French?
With our evaluations we actually took two steps. First we evaluated the programs as teachers. We looked at them from the point of view of - would they be able to teach our students what we taught them. The next step I took was to actually bring the programs into my adult learning classes. I had my adult students use the programs at home for a period of time and then gave a basic test to see what they had learned and retained.
The programs that I have listed here are the top four French learning programs from our evaluations. The clear winner was Rocket French, but the others on the list didn't do to badly. If you need help with any of this, please don't hesitate to email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I will do everything I can to aid you on your road to learning French.
Once you do start your learning program please contact me (email above) and let me know. I love to hear from those who are working to learn my favorite language.
To Learning French the Simple Way,
OUR TOP PICK FOR LEARNING FRENCH
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#1 Rated French Learning System for 2011
The winner from our evaluations was Rocket French. This one French learning course covered more, taught better, and provided more value for its price than any other product we looked at.
Rocket French is a complete leaning package that will start you off with salut (hi), and walk you right through to being able to speak conversational French. The course includes 31 interactive audio lessons, a written component, and software that both makes the lessons fun and adds a visual element to the learning experience.
In other words this one includes something to fit every learning style, and the content to get you to speaking French.
One of the things we liked the most about Rocket French was its interactivity. The audio lessons walk you through a conversation, teach you the words, and then put you into the conversation (you have to talk back). This gives Rocket French a very distinct advantage over every other course on our list.
Since most learners don't have someone who is fluent in French to converse with, Rocket French adds that element into their learning package.
The next area that made Rocket French stand out is with their software. The program that comes with the package adds a vocab builder, another audio element, and helps to teach proper verb usage. The best thing about the software is that it makes learning fun.
Finally for those who want to go beyond conversational French, Rocket French also offers a second course. This makes it the only package on our list that allows the learner to go further should they choose to do so. If you follow the first course up, you can take your learning to the level where you could live and interact in a French culture without language being a barrier.
Since Rocket French clearly out-shone its competitors, we are giving it the award for our top pick.
Adware Award 2009
December Update: At the moment Rocket French is being offered for only $99. Since it regularly sells for $297, this is an excellent deal. I've been told that this is a limited-time offer and that the package will soon go back up to its original price. If you've been looking for a great French learning package, you should save yourself the $200 and get it now.
In Summary: For the most varied learning techniques, the most amount of content, and for excellent value we are recommending Rocket French as the best product on the market to teach you French.
Click Here to Rocket your way to Learning French
Easy French Lessons
2. Easy French Lessons
The next learning package on our list is a software product. It is called Easy French Lessons, and as a way to learn French we can highly recommend this one as well.
Easy French lessons includes multiple teaching methods. It has audio elements, visual elements, and some written work. The software is simple to use, and does include some learning games that give it the additional fun factor.
Really the only reason this one didn't make top spot was because it didn't include as much content as Rocket French. The focus of Easy French Lessons is to get you to the point where you could deal with everyday conversations and that's it.
By the time you are done this one you likely will have enough French to get through the trip to Paris, but you will still struggle as the conversation level advances.
One thing Easy French Lessons did have going for it was it's value. It worked very well to teach for the amount of money spent. If your serious about learning though, you will be better off spending a little more and getting Rocket French.
Click Here to Buy Easy French Lessons
3. Lingo Basics
Taking third spot is a program called Lingo Basics. We were actually surprised that this one made it into the top four. The course isn't specifically a French course. Instead it teaches basic Lingo in five different languages.
When you get started with this one, the first thing you'll notice is that there is only one learning style. It is mostly a written course, and as such this one suffered greatly in both the teaching techniques and overall in learning French.
On the other hand, all of the material is laid out well. Lingo Basics will walk you through the ideas behind proper enunciation, and it will get you a good start with basic French. It will also give you a start with four other languages.
When we tested this one in our adult learning groups, it was effective if teaching. Those who used this program did learn with a bit of an accent, but it wasn't too bad.
The one thing this does have going for it is it's price. For only $50 you get a basis in five different languages. For those who need to learn French though, I would recommend the first two products on our list first.
Click Here to get Lingo Basics
Learn French Program
4. Learn French Program
Taking fourth place is the Learn French Program. At only $37 this is the cheapest product on our list. When you look closely at the program it isn't hard to discover why. It isn't that the product didn't perform well. It did or it wouldn't be in our top four. It's how the learning material is presented that brought this one into fourth.
The Learn French Program includes a large amount of material, and if you worked through it all you might get to the point where you could speak French conversationally. The problem with this one is the way the material is presented.
There is a book portion that teaches words by association. This can actually be a great way to learn, but this book will only take you so far. The rest of the learning content is divided up into memory games, a flashcards program, and other material.
Dividing the content up into so many separate programs actually made it more difficult to use as a learning tool.
All in all, the Learn French Program will get you to the point where you can carry on a conversation. In my opinion though most will be much better off choosing Rocket French or Easy French Lessons over this one.
Click Here to buy Learn French Program
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Arian Pollock (French Teacher) Middle-school teacher who also teaches adult French classes