I have been learning French on my own on and off for a good 10 years or so. Had I been on more than off, I would probably be fluent by now. Learning a new language is not easy, especially when you are learning it alone. I am not sure where all of the French speaking people are in Baton Rouge, but I can’t find them. I have searched for meet-ups and clubs and outside of Colleges and Universities and now French Immersion Schools, there are just not a lot of reasonable resources for adults who want to learn French.
$60 an hour for a tutor is not happening so I decided I would learn on my own using all of the available and free to low cost resources I could find. This included a couple of text books, lots of French films and TV and of course, YouTube.
When I first decided I wanted to take up French, I was pregnant with my 1st child. Now, my oldest son is 10 and I have 4 more little ones who are all homeschooled. I always knew I wanted to teach my children French, but never took a very serious approach. I would use some French phrases with them like “Bonjour”, “Vien ici” and “Asis-toi”, but not as much French as I totally could have been incorporating. Like I said, if I was on more than off, we could probably be all fluent by now. But no use crying over spilled milk. There is no time like the present and I have decided that for a year I am going to try French Immersion in our homeschool classroom.
What is French Immersion in the classroom?
French Immersion in the classroom is simple. Use as much French as possible and encourage the children to use French as well. Not just when they are learning French for the 30 minutes we spend on it each day, but for the entire school day. If they need to get up and get water, they will need to ask in French. Need a bathroom pass? “Francais, s’il vous plait.” If my students know the French word or phrase for something they need to say, they are encouraged to say it in French instead of in English during class time.
I really think that this can work and I invite you to follow along with our progress.
Over the next year, I will be sharing our successes and failures, what worked and what didn’t, curriculum we use and games and activities we discover to help us learn French. Are you learning French or another language on your own? Are you a homeschool teacher looking to incorporate a new language into your students studies? How about a parent who is learning a new language and wants to pass it on to your family? I’d love to hear what approaches you are taking and hear any tips you have. I am also happy to share my tips with you as well so feel free to leave a comment below!
Looking forward to taking you on this journey with us.
Next week, I will share with you all of the curriculum that I have used and which ones I am using now in the classroom. Talk soon!