Why is it fundamental to continue learning French during the lockdown?

Learning a language is like going to the gym. If you stop from one day to another, it may be hard to continue and you may have wasted your time and money.

Here are the reasons why you need continue learning French during the lockdown, even if it is a tough period.

ONE: Consistency is key

Learning a foreign language is something that you build thanks to consistency. You learn new things with your teacher, then you take the time to memorize them and practice them at your own rhythm until the next class. That’s how you improve your linguistic skills.

TWO: The guidance of a teacher is essential to be efficient

Some people may think that they can learn alone thanks to the rich content of the internet. It is true that there are very good websites to learn vocabulary, practice grammar and learn about the culture of French-speaking countries. But the internet is so rich that you would not know where to begin and if so, you would not know how to continue and if so, would you find the motivation to continue alone for a long time? Your teacher can guide you towards the right resources according to a thought progression. Moreover, the regularity of the appointments with your teacher balances your way of learning. You learn new things during the class, you study, and you do your homework before a certain date, which makes you more efficient and motivated.

THREE: You have more time during the lockdown, take advantage of it

Even if you still work remotely, you save precious time not commuting to your office. Seize this opportunity to review, take more online classes to reinforce your level or read about cultural facts which fascinate you. Enjoy this time to live your passion for the French language by watching movies, listening to French songs, reading the news, contacting French friends or practicing your grammar thanks to exercises which are corrected online.

FOUR: Take care of yourself!

Learning a foreign language is a personal process. You began to learn French because you were interested in being able to speak French due to various reasons: heritage, the dream of visiting Paris, of finding love, of having an international career… If you stop learning, even if it’s just for a short while, you will inevitably regress and forget many things. Continue doing activities for yourself. Learning French is an enchanting break so why would you stop taking care of yourself while it has positive effects on you?

FIVE: Speaking French regularly is essential in the process of learning

The best way of learning French is to speak the language. If you stop having opportunities to speak in French due to social-distancing, you will lose a lot of your fluency. Continue seizing all the opportunities to speak French: have conversations with your teacher, attend a virtual “apéro”…

SIX: The online appointments with your teacher are a good way of escaping reality

You can have interesting conversations with a person who does not belong to your direct world respecting social-distancing, your health and the health of the others.

The lockdown is maybe the best moment of your life to concentrate on your learning of the French language. It is totally safe when you do it online. Do not stop or pause this intellectual activity which pleases you because of the lockdown, you will certainly regret it in the future. According to Oscar Wilde, “To regret one’s own experiences is to arrest one’s own development. To deny one’s own experiences is to put a lie into the lips of one’s own life. It is no less than a denial of the soul.”

Etre en contact avec la langue française orale tout en restant chez soi

Les interactions régulières sont essentielles pour progresser en langue étrangère, mais enrichir vos connaissances linguistiques et culturelles de votre domicile grâce à certaines ressources peuvent renforcer et compléter vos aptitudes à communiquer avec des locuteurs natifs.

Bien connaître la culture et l’actualité d’un pays facilite les échanges et renforce les relations entre les êtres humains.

Il existe des tâches linguistiques que vous pouvez faire seul pour vous entraîner et être meilleur pour les interactions de la vie réelle : tester votre compréhension orale, enrichir votre vocabulaire, revoir certains points de grammaire, mémoriser les nombreuses exceptions de la langue française…

Voici quelques ressources pour vous aider à faire cela :

Regardez la télévision en français !

  • Si vous avez Netflix USA, vous pouvez changer la langue de l’audio. Le français est souvent une langue proposée. Il n’est pas nécessaire de regarder une série ou un film francophone pour faire cela. Si vous tapez le code 58807 dans le moteur de recherche représenté par une loupe, vous trouverez toutes les séries et films dans cette langue. Vous pourrez par la suite, choisir la langue des sous-titres. Attention, le script en français dit par les acteurs ne correspond pas toujours aux sous-titres en français.
  • Amazon Prime propose également une sélection de films en français avec des sous-titres en anglais. Pour les trouver, il vous suffit d’écrire French films on Amazon Prime dans le moteur de recherche.

  • Vous pouvez regarder la chaîne d’actualités France 24 en continue sur YouTube. La version en anglais est également disponible en temps réel si vous voulez avoir un autre point de vue sur ce qui se passe sur la planète et si vous voulez en savoir davantage sur ce qui se passe en France et en Europe.

Surfez utile sur le web !

Le français est la 4è langue la plus utilisée sur Internet, par conséquent, vous n’aurez pas de difficultés à trouver des documents authentiques pour les locuteurs natifs. Il existe, bien entendu, des milliers de sites Internet et de blogs sympas. Voici une petite sélection de sites utiles pour les apprenants du français :

Découvrez le site de RFI Savoirs, c’est une mine d’or pour les francophones et les apprenants. Cliquez sur l’onglet Apprendre et Enseigner le français. Vous pouvez écouter Le Journal en français facile et lire sa transcription. Vous pouvez enrichir votre vocabulaire grâce à Ecouter les mots de l’actualité . Vous pouvez également écouter des extraits audios et répondre à des questions de compréhension orale.

Le site de TV5MONDE est également une ressource intéressante, en particulier la partie Apprendre le français, qui est une véritable plateforme d’auto-formation. Il existe également une application du même nom.

Le site califrenchlife.com est aussi un blog sympa pour vous faire découvrir la culture française, pour écouter des podcasts spécialement crées pour les apprenants de la langue françaises et revoir la grammaire.

Ecouter la radio!

La radio a l’avantage de vous aider à vous sentir comme un francophone natif parce que vous bénéficiez du même programme que tous les francophones au même moment (même s’il y a un décalage horaire).

Voici quelques radios intéressantes disponibles via leur site Internet ou leur application:

France Info: Vous accédez aux actualités en temps réel via la radio et la télévision. Vous pouvez également regarder les informations nationales de France télévision. Vous trouverez cela sous l’onglet “JT” (Journal télévisé). Vous pouvez également regarder des vidéos qui contiennent la transcription de la voix off. France Info est une application et un site très riches.

Un peu de musique?

Si vous voulez vous familiariser avec les chansons françaises uniquement, le site de M Radio et son application sont excellents. M Radio ne diffuse que des chansons françaises et propose des webradios thématiques comme: M Radio années 80 / 90 / 2000, M Radio chansons d’amour, M Radio Francophonie, M Radio Détente…

Chante France est un site et une application qui sont également spécialisés dans la chanson française. Vous pouvez également écouter différentes webradios comme: Chante France Nouveautés, Chante France 80’s, Chante France 70’s, Chante France 60’s, Chante France Emotion.

Ces ressources sont des outils très riches pour votre apprentissage mais ils ne remplaceront jamais les corrections, les conseils avisés et le guidage d’un professeur qui vous suit individuellement. Ils ne remplaceront pas non plus les interactions entre les êtres humains qui sont une composante fondamentale de votre but ultime en tant qu’apprenant en langue étrangère : vivre des moments magiques.

Why is it a good idea to learn French with your co-workers?

Happy businesswoman standing in front of a business meeting

The French language is spoken on every continent and is the fifth most popular language on the Internet. It’s the language of diplomacy, an important language in journalism , and in jurisprudence.

It’s an official language of the United Nations, of NATO, of the European Space Agency, of the North American Free Trade Agreement, of World Trade Organization, of the EU, of the Council of Europe and of some important international non-profit organizations such as the Red Cross, Amnesty International, Médecins sans Frontières and Médecins du Monde.

In 2050, French may become the number 1 language in the world especially thanks to its growth on the African continent.

French is an elegant language and it’s perhaps the moment to expand your business to Canada, the West Indies, Polynesia, Europe or Africa. If that’s not the case, maybe it’s the moment to have a common activity which reinforces the relationship between the co-workers of your company.

If you decide to learn French for work or pleasure, it’s a good idea to do it as a team because learning a foreign language is comparable to a work challenge. Indeed, like for some projects, learning French is a long process which requires observation of details and efforts to reach a common goal: being able to communicate with French-speakers.

The French language is a good choice because 45% of the English vocabulary comes from French. It has the same alphabet as English and you will be able to make simple sentences quickly. French is a world language and will remain a world language in the future because it’s really spoken on all the continents like English. Chinese and Spanish, for example, are not spoken in such a broad way as official languages.

Like for any long process, some people want to give up easily but it will be the moment to test the team spirit. If there is solidarity and encouragements, it will be positive for the atmosphere of your company and its projects.

Learning French is also a fun activity. You discover foreign cultures from different continents and you discover sounds that you would never have enunciated in other circumstances.

Little by little, you will become more aware of geography, some traditions, cultural and historical facts and you will become more open-minded and more interesting for your friends, family and customers.

You will become a better person and you will be able to be more flexible with your customers. You will feel more empathy for the people who make efforts to speak your language therefore you will show a better image of your business.

Learning French is not limited to lessons. In order to improve your level and fluidity, you will need to practice in real life: during meet-ups of French-speakers and Francophiles in restaurants and bars, during parties with French songs, during French movie nights… You will meet interesting people who can be important for your personal and professional life.

By highlighting the fact that your team can speak French, you may become more attractive to European companies. Indeed, in Europe, employees often take foreign language classes due to their geo-political situation and because they must continuously adapt to the EU market and globalization. But if you show that you also made efforts to adapt to the others, your company will look smarter and so different than the other American companies.

The fact that most of the Americans do not make the effort to study foreign languages can endanger their society in the future. Let your company be an example for your country and a good surprise for foreign companies.

Make the difference by learning French and be smarter than your competitors!

Emma Franks

What can French bring to your career?

lol

These celebrities speak French and are very successful in their career. Who doesn’t remember Jodie Foster who speaks French fluently in Elyseum?

Being able to speak another language always looks good on a resume. You will stand out from other Americans who don’t have this skill. As French is spoken in many territories on the planet, you’ll be able to do business with more countries easily. Canada is a bilingual neighbor country and the French-speaking countries located in Europe are quite successful economically (France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Monaco). So maybe it’s time to think about doing business with them or expanding your company!

International companies are trying to hire people who have extraordinary qualities: flexibility, open-mindedness, good writing and speaking skills, intercultural skills to do business, curiosity… Learning French will help you acquire these qualities and will allow you to have a better position and a better salary.

If you don’t have any BA in a foreign language, you can take very affordable tests called DELF and DALF to validate your level of French. Each test allows you to have a diploma which will be valid for the rest of your life and that you can put on your resume.

This is a short list of examples of jobs that you can have thanks to a diploma in French and you will see that French teacher is not the only job opportunity you can have:

  • Bilingual client care representative
  • International business consultant
  • Bilingual tour consultant
  • Book review editor
  • French teacher
  • Language assessor
  • French is the language of diplomacy 😉
  • Lawyer
  • Proofreader
  • Publisher
  • Translator
  • Actor
  • Travel agent
  • University professor
  • Writer
  • Technical writer
  • Journalist
  • Foreign exchange trader
  • Game tester…

A foreign language is a plus for your career and studying French is a self-fulfilling and challenging activity. And you? When are you starting your French classes?

 

 

Why should Americans learn French?

Paris en noir et blanc

 

If you’re American and you still wonder why you should learn to speak French, what follows is for you.

 

Be different and arouse admiration :

English, as it’s a language that the whole planet learns, is not a rare skill on the market. It’s hard time to make the difference with most of the English-speakers and show to the rest of the world that you, as an American, you also made efforts to learn a foreign language.

 

A superpower!

 Speaking another language is a wonderful skill. You can add it to your resume and it’s like having a superpower! Indeed, you can communicate with a big part of the population in the world and by 2050, French will be the second most spoken language in the world. And thanks to French, you will increase your employability.

 

You’ll sound and look sexy!

French is the language of love, everybody knows that! As French is a beautiful language, you’ll look sexy when you speak it. And you may find Love, French-speakers love the American accent!

 

More culture!

You’ll be able to enjoy French-speaking movies, books and newspapers …

 

You will acquire many new skills and not only linguistic and cultural ones!

By learning French and by discovering the cultures from the French-speaking countries, your brain will begin to work in a different way and you will develop the following new skills:

 

  • You’ll be more open-minded.
  • You’ll be able to adapt to any unknown situation more easily.
  • You’ll be able to live in unfamiliar environments while being more comfortable.
  • Your writing and speaking skills will become better.
  • You’ll be more aware of your language and of your own culture.
  • You’ll be able to analyze and evaluate in a more relevant way.
  • You will understand many disciplines more easily.
  • You’ll be more comfortable with people who have a different culture than yours.
  • You’ll be more curious about the other cultures and the other languages.
  • You’ll feel almost at home in many countries: French is spoken on all the continents.
  • You’ll understand international relations better because learning a language is also learning a culture, a different way of thinking.
  • Learning French is an excellent exercise for your memory.

 

France is an awesome country!

Paris will always be Paris! But the whole country is interesting from a cultural point of view. Besides, the French landscapes are various and wonderful: The Alps, the French Riviera, the West coast…

French food is delicious. French wine is great. French fashion is famous all over the world and the best perfumes are from France.

 

French is an important language in the world.

French is the language of culture, diplomacy, a very important language in the EU and the number of French-speakers is growing in a very impressive way. Besides, it’s the fourth language on the Internet.

Traveling easily to many countries in the world and feeling at home everywhere!

In this map, you can see the French-speaking countries of the world.

2000px-Proportion_of_French_speakers_by_country_in_2014_(0-50%_gradation).svg

 

French is spoken in many interesting countries such as Switzerland, Luxembourg, Belgium, Canada, Senegal, Mali, Morocco, Tunisia and many other countries in Africa.

 

What can French bring you from a professional point of view?

 Being able to speak another language always looks good on a resume. You will stand out from other Americans who don’t have this skill. As French is spoken in many territories on the planet, you’ll be able to do business with more countries easily. Moreover, the French-speaking countries located in Europe are quite successful economically (France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Monaco), so maybe it’s time to think about doing business with them or expanding your company. Besides, Canada is a bilingual neighbor country.

Many international companies are trying to hire people who have the skills mentioned above and being able to speak French may allow you to have a better salary.

If you don’t have any BA in a foreign language, you can take very affordable tests called DELF and DALF to validate your level of French. Each test allows you to have a diploma which will be valid for the rest of your life and that you can put in your resume.

This is a short list of examples of jobs that you can have thanks to a degree in French and you will see that French teacher is not the only job opportunity you can have:

  • Bilingual client care representative
  • International business consultant
  • Bilingual tour consultant
  • Book review editor
  • French teacher
  • Language assessor
  • French is the language of diplomacy 😉
  • Lawyer
  • Proofreader
  • Publisher
  • Translator
  • Travel agent
  • University professor
  • Writer
  • Technical writer
  • Journalist
  • Foreign exchange trader
  • Game tester…

And being able to speak French is always a plus in any career.

 

You already know so many French words! 

Due to the fact that England had French Kings many centuries ago, many French words are still in the English language. You certainly use them every day, so a big part of the job is already done!

 

You will be able to learn Spanish and the other latin languages more easily.

There are many similarities between the latin languages. 

 

If you speak French well enough, you can study in a French university and have a wonderful experience abroad saving money!

Studying in France is much cheaper than studying in any American university.

 

You will become a better person !

Learning a foreign language is the doorway to open-mindedness, tolerance, empathy and wisdom.

So, when will YOU start learning French?

 

 

What to do not to forget your French during the summer break ?

You are still motivated to study French but your teacher has a summer break !

 

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Don’t worry! A break is the best moment to go back to what you’ve studied so far. Actually, it’s THE moment to review and memorize the elements that you never had the time to master.

 

Here are a few activities that you can have during the summer :

 

  • Making flashcards : what about making your own learning tool to have an overall view of all the tenses and of the vocabulary ?

Making flashcards is a good way of making a synthesis and of memorizing everything more easily. Don’t hesitate to use colors.

flashcards-1591812_960_720

  • Making a chart to summarize all the tenses.

 

Example :

 

Temps / Tense : Exemple de phrase affirmative / Example of a positive sentence : Exemple de phrase négative /Example of a negative sentence : Quand utiliser ce temps / When to use the tense :
 

Futur

 

 

 

Je chanterai.

 

Je ne chanterai pas.

–            Prédiction

–               Parler de l’avenir…

 

 

  • Reading your notebook as if it was a book. Highlight the elements that you need to memorize.

 

  • Reading in French : books or articles which are especially written for foreigners or authentic books or articles. Read what is interesting to you.

 

  • Practicing your pronunciation. Listen to podcasts, read the transcription and read it out loud. Check with the podcast if you have a doubt.

 

  • Watching movies or the news in French.

 

  • Doing exercises online to practice your grammar.

 

  • Speaking in French. Seize each opportunity to practice your French. Go to French restaurants, to French parties… Maybe it’s the moment to enjoy a holiday in a French-speaking country 😉

 

  • Writing in French to the French-speakers you know. It’s always good to keep in touch and your friends would appreciate your efforts. You can also write a text about your holiday activities to your teacher. You can give him/her the text during your first class in September.

 

  • If you have specific needs, ask your teacher to give you some relevant resources.

 

CaliFrenchlife is a good website to practice your pronunciation with podcasts, to read adapted articles about the French culture and to review your grammar !

Don’t hesitate to click on the links in red.

Passez un bel été!

CFL-Header copie 2

 

Rédiger un résumé

La Pointe des Poulains à Belle île en Mer.

La Pointe des Poulains à Belle île en Mer.

 

Introduction:

  1. Présentez brièvement le texte: titre, date, source, auteur.

Cet article s’intitule … et est paru dans…  le + date

Cet article a été écrit par…

2. Annoncer clairement le thème principal du texte.

Ce texte met en évidence…

Ce texte traite de ….

 

Conseils pour rédiger le corps du résumé:

Reformuler et synthétiser chaque paragraphe du texte (dans l’ordre).

Ne pas changer l’ordre des idées.

Utiliser des mots de liaison pour articuler le texte.

Rester objectif. Ne pas donner son opinion.

Ne pas changer le sens du texte.

Faites des phrases courtes et claires.

 

Quand votre résumé est rédigé, relisez. Relire c’est 50% du travail!

Indiquez le nombre de mots à la fin de votre résumé.

Il faut respecter le nombre de mots imposés. 

 

Rappel: Les mots de liaison:

Les mots de liaison cours

 

What about learning French AGAIN?

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You studied French a while ago. You still have your French books and your bilingual dictionary somewhere in your house. When you see them, you tend to think « I will learn French again one day »… But time flies by and finally life happens without any French words in it…

 

Why are you procrastinating?

 

  • Taking French classes again would be the opportunity to have a better self image: it’s important not to have the feeling of having given up.

 

  • You already have some knowledge in French so it will be easier than learning another language.

 

  • How about setting new goals in your life? Being able to have a certain level of French can be an achievement. Indeed, being able to communicate in another language is magic!

 

  • What about getting a certification in French? It would be a great line on your resume and would show your skills and ambition if you’re interested in a better position. Moreover, passing an exam is always a source of self-satisfaction and you would be so proud of yourself.

 

Learning a language is evidence of open-mindedness and is a skill that not everybody has, YOU can start today.

 

La_réussite

You will be successful!

Pourquoi les BD sont-elles de bons supports pour apprendre et enseigner le français ?

Tintin_and_Snowy_grafitti

La bande dessinée est un outil qui peut se révéler très utile dans l’apprentissage du français ; que la lecture de la BD soit faite en classe avec un professeur ou en autonomie.

Si vous aimez la bande dessinée, cette forme de littérature peut être une méthode motivante pour comprendre et apprendre un français authentique basé sur le style direct via les dialogues des personnages fictifs.

Les textes sont courts, percutants et efficaces, ce qui peut être un autre facteur de motivation.

Par ailleurs, l’image donne des indices supplémentaires pour mieux comprendre le sens du dialogue et de l’intrigue.

Cette forme de littérature a également une valeur socio-culturelle forte. Les personnages de BD font partie du patrimoine culturel des populations francophones et ils évoluent dans un univers qui montre le quotidien dans une culture locale.

Les BD sont des supports propices à la discussion. Le professeur de français peut choisir un angle interculturel, un angle chronologique pour comparer deux époques, un angle artistique pour analyser la complémentarité image-texte… Et on peut se poser la question suivante : l’humour des BD est-il capable de traverser les barrières culturelles et linguistiques ?

Les projets qui peuvent émaner des bandes dessinées sont nombreux. La finalité la plus évidente est la création d’une BD en classe. En groupes, les apprenants peuvent se mettre d’accord sur les aspects suivants :

  • Création de l’intrigue
  • Profil des personnages
  • Apparence des personnages
  • Dialogues
  • Décors
  • Couleurs

Que de conversations animées en perspective !

 

Mais quelles bandes dessinées font partie de la culture francophone ?

 

Les auteurs belges sont particulièrement créatifs dans le domaine de la bande dessinée :

 

Tintin est le héros de BD belge par excellence. Ses aventures peuvent être de bons supports pour des analyses chronologiques et l’évolution des représentations au fur et à mesure que le temps passe. Cette BD est un très bon support pour les adolescents, jeunes adultes et adultes.

 

Blake et Mortimer est une bande dessinée d’espionnage belge qui peut convenir aux adolescents, jeunes adultes et aux adultes.

 

Les Schtroumpfs (The Smurfs) sont de petits êtres bleus qui vivent dans des maisons en forme de champignons et qui craignent le méchant Gargamel. Cette BD est adaptée aux enfants jusqu’à l’âge de 12 ans environ.

 

Boule et Bill est également une création belge. Boule est le maître et l’ami de Bill, un cocker anglais. Ce dernier ne parle pas mais arrive toujours à se faire comprendre. Cette BD est un support exploitable avec des enfants jusqu’à l’âge de 12 ans environ.

 

Lucky Luke est un personnage issu d’une coopération franco-belge. Il est un cow-boy solitaire qui évolue dans un western. Il s’agit d’un support attractif pour les adolescents, les jeunes adultes et les adultes.

 

Spirou et Fantasio est une autre BD issue de la collaboration franco-belge. Les personnages éponymes sont des reporters qui essaient de sauver le monde de personnes méchantes comme des gangsters, des savants fous et des dictateurs. Cette BD est adaptée aux enfants jusqu’à l’âge de 12 ans.

 

Astérix est une création française apparu en 1959. Son scénariste est René Goscinny et son illustrateur est Albert Uderzo. Les aventures humoristiques d’Astérix racontent les péripéties de son personnage éponyme, originaire d’un petit village gaulois qui résiste à l’invasion des Romains. Cette BD est divertissante à tous les âges.

 

800px-Comic_wall_Asterix_&_Obelix,_Goscinny_and_Uderzo._Brussels

 

La plupart de ces bandes dessinées ont été adaptées au cinéma ou sont devenues des dessins animés.

Comparer la BD à l’une de ses versions cinématographiques peut également être une exploitation intéressante.

 

En conclusion, la bande dessinée est une forme littéraire à valoriser pour apprendre et enseigner le français de manière ludique.

 

Is it worth reading children’s books to learn French when you’re an adult?

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A lot of students think that because they are beginners, they should read children’s books. They think that the vocabulary they will find in this type of books is adapted to their level and needs. But they are wrong!

First, the topics which are developed in children’s books are not adapted to the interests of adults.

Second, the vocabulary that you find in them is childish, as a consequence it’s difficult to use it as an adult.

Third, don’t think that children’s books are easy. These books are written for native speakers. You will certainly meet tenses that you have never studied before such as the passé simple, the imparfait and the plus-que-parfait. These tenses are used for fairytales and stories and are not adapted to the beginners ‘level.

As an adult, what should you read?

If you’re a beginner, read books which are adapted to your level. This type of books exists. They are especially written for foreigners and hold vocabulary and tenses which coincide with the requirements of the following levels: A1, A2, B1, B2, C1, C2. These levels correspond to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages.

When you begin to be more comfortable in French, you can read authentic documents that is to say texts which were written for native speakers.

What to choose?

Read what is interesting to you.

You’re going to spend a lot of time reading, and as time is precious, don’t waste it with useless content. Follow your heart and choose books about topics that you enjoy.

Contemporary literature is easier to read than classics.

Reading the newspaper can be an excellent exercise too. You choose your favorite articles and you can read them quickly discovering vocabulary that you will be able to use during conversations.

The fact of reading in a foreign language as a complement to your studies is one of the best things you can do. Indeed, you will discover a lot from a linguistic and cultural point of view. But if you read, don’t try to understand the text a 100%. Don’t spoil your pleasure looking up every single word in the dictionary. Just look up the words that cause problem to understand the global message or words you’re curious about. Write them in a notebook to begin a vocabulary list that you will try to memorize later.

Reading is a long process, it’s important to choose the right texts which are adapted to your level and to your interests, otherwise you may give up this such pleasant and efficient activity.

 

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