Dear lovers of French,
If you already have some basic knowledge of French, it is essential to activate what you know and start speaking. To achieve the result you need language environment. What is 'language environment? This is a combination of social, economic, political and cultural elements expressed through language, i. e. a language community.
There is no need to explain the importance of language environment for language learning. It is obvious that this is an integral part of language learning. We cannot learn natural language by rote using textbooks.
No doubt, the best way is to go to the country where this language is spoken and carefully select communicative situations.
This article is about an alternative way to immerse in language - virtual language environment. There are tips how to absorb French every day, systematize information and achieve the maximum result.
Please remember that the lessons can be effective only if your work is systematic and regular. You need to work every day. These lessons should be fun. So watch serials and films with subtitles in your free time. Use every opportunity to 'be' in language and soon you will see the result. It is vital to learn to 'feel' language. So let us make it our aim.
The most important recommendation for creating language environment is to select materials that are interesting to you. So choose your topics!
Here are a few links to what you can watch, listen and read in your free time:
All the French TV channels http://www.ma-tele.fr/
Radio stations to any taste http://www.radio.fr/
Subtitled films in French www.filmfra.com/
An audio library http://www.audiocite.net/
An online library http://www.ebooksgratuits.com/ebooks.php
Online magazines http://www.lemonde.fr/ и http://www.lefigaro.fr/
A BBC French course http://www.bbc.co.uk/languages/french/
An online resource for music lovers http://ru.rfi.fr/obshchii/20120626-frantsuzskii-yazyk-s-pesnei-n-n
The radio and music can serve as background, they help to get used to the tempo and the melody of speech. But if you watch a film or listen to an audiobook (those you did in Russian are better), this is a real job. In both cases write down vocabulary. Put the words into a system. Take notes. First of all, classify the words according to the part of speech. Nouns always take the gender, simply put the article. It is important as the correct use of the article shows a high level of language. Please remember about it.
The verbs should go to a table of conjugations according to the tenses (présent, imparfait, passé composé, future simple). I recommend a laconic website http://www.les-verbes.com/ that contains both verb forms and information about the verb (a group, transitive/ intransitive, the reflexive form, a conjugation pattern).
Smartphone users can try the following apps in English:
1. FrenchVerbs and FrenchVocab (by BrainScape) provide the most common verbs with translation and audio, a rating system for practising certain words.
2. Duolingo is good for practising both French and English.
3. In Lingvo Light FR you practise the words you have chosen. There are 800 verbs whose conjugations are in 'Reference'. 'Test' helps test your knowledge.
Finally, one more wonderful English website that makes learning exciting:
This website contains a lot of information for different levels. But I recommend focusing on listening. The audio material comes with texts and pictures, the topics are up-to-date and useful.
Have effective lessons, achieve your goals and enjoy learning French!