this post now deleted…
I can see that my ranting on Twitter will see my citizenship being withdrawn!
In any case this does not remove the ability to arbitarily revoke someone’s citizenship.
It just removes the requirement to actually tell the individual involved.
This post now deleted.
Maybe, if one’s UK citizenship were to be withdrawn, one could claim political asylum in France <<Je suis un réfugié politique du Brexit .>> and then get a French passport without needing to do the language test!
Or there again maybe not…
Perhaps better to just keep plugging away at Duolingo et al ( currently on 874 consecutive DL days).
I think they are stuck with us born there Mat. Rant away
How do you rate Duolingo by the way ?
Well, obviously I find it addictive!
Basically, it cleverly disguises learning by repetition so that doing the exercises becomes a bit addictive. Whether it’s useful or not depends on what suits your learning style and what you want to learn. It’s certainly helped me to learn French grammar and to be able to read French newspapers and easily follow films with French sub-titles. I use the free version and have an ad blocker, I’m not sure if the other version is worth it. Also I use the computer rather than the phone version - the latter seems too simplistic.
Unfortunately, my weakest area is conversation, which is where DL is less use. I can usually say what I want to say, but often don’t catch everything in a rapid reply. If one is retired, it’s so much harder than if you’re daily in a francophone working environment.
Yesterday was our turn to host a lunch for our anglo-French learning group of retired professionals and academics, which was formed several years ago in Figeac when two groups of language students were moaning about the cost of lessons. The French people suggested that instead of spending money on classes, we could better spend it talking to each other in a resto. These days we alternate this with hosting meals where each person brings a course and yesterday we had a very enjoyable,four hour ‘class’.
I’ve just started with duolingo - if you are someone who finds the tools of language construction familiar and comfortable then it’s potentially a useful tool for reading but less for for speech. If you don’t like language tools (what the pox is an adverb? I couldn’t give a wet slap.) then it may be less useful.
There’s a free course that works better for me from Language Transfer (available on both PC and phone) that is specifically a spoken language learning method. I found that I learned some Greek quite quickly with this - enough to understand parts of conversation after just a few lessons - and I’m going to start trying it for French.
Duo is OK, but (unless it has changed) the choice of phrases is … sometimes rather esoteric
With this lot in government it’s not beyond the bounds of possibility!
Duolingo may be a useful addition to speaking French in real conversations and it might improve your range of vocabulary but that’s about it. After probably 4 years of my wife using the app daily, she still rarely speaks any French, leaving conversation etc to me.
I never used any form of language course since school and holiday French, but have found diving , through necessity,into conversation and looking up unknown words as you go has been the only way to become a fluent and confident speaker.
… have found diving , through necessity,into conversation and looking up unknown words as you go has been the only way to become a fluent and confident speaker.
Your closing sentence seems at odds with your opening one!
Successful learning strategies in any subect vary from person to person, but I think careful reading of texts is fairly fundamental. For instance, if you’d read my comments more carefully, you might have concluded that my assessment of DL was that while good for improving one’s grammar and spelling, it’s far less useful for improving two way conversation skills.
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How do you rate Duolingo by the way ?
I tried it for a while ( a while ago so may well have changed) and didn’t last long. I found a learning method that didn’t really apply the language correctly (mostly tu-toi, some old fashioned verbs etc) that irritating owl and the noises got to me, plus I don’t respond to the gaining of points/awards/badges…
Much prefer to pay a modest sum for my daily dose of Frantastique, and get some french culture and history thrown in.
I tried it for a while ( a while ago so may well have changed)
Exactly! It’s what suits your learning style and what you want to do with what you are learning or have learned.
I wanted to be able to write serious articles on art in French (have managed three so far and they’re far better than the woolly romantic amateurish regional stuff that would be laughed out by any US or Uk gallery) but I also wanted to be able to converse at length with both my neighbours and our more cosmopolitan French friends - that’s not being snobby - it’s more about wanting to be in two different worlds, both environments are interesting, but they have differing concerns, vocab, accent etc.
Having continued with Duo for a bit longer, I realise my frustration is caused by the insistence to translate into colloquial English, rather than presenting then English as a direct translation. This makes wrapping ones head around French sentence construction more difficult than need be, especially if the colloquialisms are not what one would choose to use anyway.
Of course I am still at an extremely basic level, and this may be much less of an issue further in.
For me, someof the difficulty is around the fact that the site is American (as is Frantastique, but that is less apparent) and the English sentences are presented solely as American English, although usually British English is accepted in the answers.
I started it although, in theory, my French is better than entirely basic because I felt I was starting to lose some of the very fundamental grammatical structures and could do with revisiting them. Not sure how long I can cope with the jolly style though