Are you planning to take French lessons on Skype? Have you done your research about it?
In this blog post, I’ll give you my 10 effective tips on how to have successful Skype French lessons.
My tips for your French lessons on Skype
I have been teaching French for years and always recommend these pointers to my students before their French lessons on Skype.
If you follow these steps,
- Your French Skype lesson will be enjoyable as well as successful.
- You will gain your tutor’s trust and establish a good relationship with him.
Even though not all tutors follow the same approach to instruction, these pointers will assist you in any condition, such as,
- Interacting with native French speakers
- Taking foreign language classes aside from French
Finish your sentences
Practicing is always better than just listening. Because we often forget what we just heard, practicing is the key to mastering a language. If you want to learn French, practice is imperative!
That is why we are here. Do not worry about your mistakes; keep practicing, and you will improve. If you can say it out loud, it’s even better.
Here is an example that you might encounter during your French lessons on Skype.
Teacher:Où allez-vous? (Where are you going?)
Good answer: À l’école. (To school.)
Better answer: Je vais à l’école. (I’m going to school.)
Teacher: Qu’avez-vous acheté? (What did you buy?)
Good answer: Un bonbon. (A candy.)
Better answer: J’ai acheté un bonbon. (I bought candy.)
You may add anything you like to practice your full sentences conversation.
Listen and repeat
The expression “comprehensible input” describes comprehensible language that is just a bit beyond the student’s present level of understanding. The phrase refers to the fact that even though some vocabulary and grammatical structures may be unfamiliar, the general idea is still clear.
During my French lessons on Skype, I will send you the correct or better phrasing for your sentences, and I will read them for you. Then you will repeat them after me. This is my straightforward method of instruction.
Check this conversation below:
Student: Je vais aller en France. (wrong)
Teacher: Je suis allé en France.
Student: Je suis allé en France.
Copy my questions
During our French lesson on Skype, you will hear me ask a question. That may be your answer. You will see that you must twist my question to provide an answer.
You will hear me ask a question and then imitate it. You will not need to add anything; listen and copy.
You will also notice that, at times, I will emphasize the part of your question that needs to be improved.
Here is an example of what you will experience during our French lesson through Skype:
Teacher: Es-tu allé au restaurant hier?
Student: Oui, Nous irons au restaurant hier. (wrong)
Teacher: Es-tu allé au restaurant hier?
Student: Oui, Nous sommes allés au restaurant hier.
It’s okay if I’m not typing
It has commonly accepted that learning a language begins with the alphabet. Even well-known self-help books begin with the alphabet. Unfortunately, this is not the best way to begin learning French.
It makes it more difficult to become accustomed to the language’s sounds and think well in the language.
Your brain interprets written and spoken words differently.
This is why you have difficulty processing text in a foreign language. When reading, your brain processes text the same way it processes characters in your native tongue.
That is not how a native speaker learns a language. Your brain tries to decode sounds as you hear sounds since it can only focus when it hears something new.
Conclusion: Audio is far way better than text learning.
Because of this, I do not immediately type the words I speak in my French Skype classes.
I’ll repeat the phrase without typing, using hand gestures or similar phrases to ensure you understand. After this attempt, only then will I type the words or phrases.
Focus on the thought
A “spaced repetition” learning and memorization technique is a terrific way to remember the terminology. It is based on the simple notion that extending your study periods would help you retain information longer.
The beginning is to learn a new word for your vocabulary. The more you can recall, the better it stays in your mind.
In the long run, with a few well-timed review sessions, the terminology enters your long-term memory.
It is therefore important to avoid wanting to chat about anything and everything during your Skype French lessons. Even if there are easier options, use the new word when practicing it.
Keep it French
In order to boost your foreign language communication skills, language immersion is the fastest method. That statement is the closest to what is going on in language learning vs. acquisition.
Considering English or your native language as a last resort would be best. Instead, express yourself in plain language.
Check this illustration to understand better:
Student: Le truc pour la nourriture fraîche. (The thing for cool food)
Teacher: Le réfrigérateur. (The fridge.)
Student: Le réfrigérateur.
Feel free to ask question
My speech is usually close to a native’s speed. Do not worry if you can’t get it right away. Just ask for a slower repetition if you need one.
Here’s an example:
Teacher: Avez-vous bien dormi?
Student: Quoi!? (What!?)
Teacher: Avez-vous bien dormi? (slower pace)
Student: Oui, bien dormi.
Don’t pretend if you don’t understand
An effective learning environment requires collaboration and trust between teachers and students. It is impossible for me to anticipate which words you do not know or how well you comprehended my previous statement.
The lesson will continue smoothly if you request me to repeat something or clarify a term you do not understand.
If you grin and say “Oui” to seem like you understand when you don’t, you will lose track of what I am saying. I will end up talking to myself.
Check the example below:
Teacher: Avez-vous regardé les nouvelles?
Teacher: Quelles nouvelles avez-vous entendues aujourd’hui ?
Student: Oui aujourd’hui…
Teacher: Quelles nouvelles avez-vous entendu?
Teacher: Comprenez-vous l’actualité?
Mistakes are okay
It can be frightening for new French students who are reluctant to leave their comfort zones!
It is okay to make mistakes as long as you learn from them.
It signals that you are learning and eager to improve if you accept your mistakes. During my French lesson on Skype, you may make mistakes.
To prevent frustration or feeling pressured, set a reasonable goal for yourself.
To improve, errors must be made. You may speak freely; I will not hold anything against you! I will help you improve as needed.
Teacher: Quel âge as-tu?
Teacher: Ah, “trente ans”.
Student: J’ai trente ans.
Take French exams
If you wish to begin learning French, these free French lessons are for you. These lessons are particularly for those who wish to take French lessons via Skype. These lessons are clear and entertaining!
Your French lessons via Skype will be more effective after reading some introductory material. Having taken the French test, your brain will be well exercised. Are you ready to begin? Here are some things to be considered:
Find your online tutors
These are my personal recommendations:
- Verbal Planet
Italki is the largest and most developed online tutoring platform, which is why it is my top pick.
You may join Italki through this link to claim your $10 off on your first lesson.
Pick the best tutor
Italki is a great place to find online french tutors. Each teacher has a unique profile page on Italki, which includes their biography, testimonials, video, qualifications, and more. Does your potential tutor meet these criteria?
- Their review rating is 5.0.
- They finished more than a handful of sessions.
- They show up to every meeting.
- Their reviews are excellent.
Prepare the tools for your French lesson on Skype
The optimum device for French lessons through Skype is a PC, not a phone or tablet. Even Italki teachers who wish to teach on Italki are required to set up their tools beforehand. Please ensure adequate Internet connection, audio, and video quality.
It’s preferable to have the following tools to take part in an online live class:
My teaching techniques for beginners
My French lessons on Skype sessions for beginners and intermediate students are intended to:
- Master all the communication skills you require by practicing them
- Gain knowledge of vocabulary and grammar through examples or comprehensible information
- To learn grammar, develop a strategy
- Keep the subject matter relevant
- Select the educational activities that are most suited to you.
- Maintain your motivation.
Your online French tutor is here to assist you using Skype’s voice, video, text, and screen-sharing functions. Take advantage of everything Skype has to offer! To learn French faster, take my webinar on language learning.
Online French class flow example
A 55-minute French lesson on Skype (video + audio) is presented in the following format:
- practicing certain aspects of language, such as pronunciation and vocabulary, can be improved by repeating them.
a. (10-15 mins) We review the previous lesson’s main ideas.
b. (10-15 mins) We develop material from the essential ideas and create variations.
- Fresh content that teaches new grammar and vocabulary.
a. (10-15 mins) We read either from the textbook (for beginners) or from real-world online content (for those at an intermediate and higher level).
b. (10-15 mins) We discuss the text we read.
- Speaking creatively for fun
a. (10-15 mins) We have a relaxed conversation based on pictures.
For example, we can look over rooms on Airbnb together to learn how to make a hotel reservation (video, screen sharing). In this way, we achieve results in the areas where we are most successful.
We become fluent in expressing our needs.
I, as your French tutor, will choose the finest materials based on your fluency level to create a custom course for you. Because audio is not as effective as video, we communicate visually.
Keeping eye contact and receiving feedback while practicing via video chat are advantages of this practice.
I will assist you in improving your French by directing you through a video call, utilizing words, text, facial expressions, and gestures. Ensure your internet connection is strong enough to sustain a Skype video call to prevent interruption.
The best results are achieved by taking two 1-hour classes per week. The optimal number is three or more.
Even if there are no French classes online, you can still look back at our previous Skype conversations and see what you learned.
You’ll see that you can become conversationally fluent in a few months. Online classes are the best way to enhance your French skills, especially for beginners!
I can’t wait to meet you now that you have these tips! See you in my French class! 😉