Speaking French in a week sounds like a myth. But, we can’t help and wonder, what if it wasn’t?
We decided to bust the myth by meeting people who have learned French in 7 days Challenge.
We’ll try to discover what results to expect after only a week of studying French, and what are the most efficient study strategies to speak French in record time.
Let’s find out if it is possible to get to a conversational level in French in a couple of days of learning.
People Who Learned French in 7 Days
Lathan Liou undertook the challenge of learning French in a week. Before he started the experiment, he could just make a couple of basic sentences. His goal was to obtain a conversational level with a native speaker and to see how much he can progress in a week.
He used a specific method of learning, named active recall, which is a principle of efficient learning. It claims the need to actively stimulate memory during the learning process.
Take a look at his testimonial on the YouTube channel.
Let’s break down the steps Lathan Liou followed to learn French in a week.
His first step was to learn the 1000 Most Common French words by creating a catalog in Spreadsheet and categorizing each one according to the word type, whether it’s adjective, noun, preposition, etc. To reinforce the memorization he used the Anki application, a flashcard app, where by inserting the vocabulary you get flashcards to practice.
On the second day, Lathan Liou moved to learn the basic verbs and the most used tenses. He used the active recall method to reinforce the learning.
Once he acquired the necessary building blocks, Liou moved forward to building a sentence. Even with a small number of words, it’s possible to construct a substantial amount of sentences, thanks to limitless combinations.
In the last phase of French intensive learning, Liou included immersion, which meant listening to French music, watching Netflix in French, and taking any occasion to passively acquire the language.
After a Week of Learning French, Did Liou Become Completely Fluent in French?
Well, he didn’t. But he improved in many different areas, in oral comprehension, written comprehension, oral communication. He’s still not able to fully participate in an adult conversation, but after seeing what he can achieve in only a week, he felt motivated to pursue learning at the same pace.
To learn more about other people who learned French in a week, discover 3 Average guys learn French in one Week, who embarked on the same personal experiment.
A 7-day French Study Plan:
1. Set Your Goal
Before you even devote yourself to a language, answer the primordial question “why? “. If your why is strong enough, move to “when”, and “how”, which lets you set the learning framework, meaning what way, at what pace, and by when.
2. Learn Common Words
Find a list of common words in French. Or create one on your own. If you are creating your own list of common words, prioritize the words based on their daily usage. For instance, the word “giraffe” isn’t so often needed in everyday communication, whereas “eat”, or “book” has a wider usage.
3. Learn Basic Verbs in Present, Past Simple, Future, and Future Proche
To have a basic everyday conversation, you don’t need all tenses and moods. Using Present, Past Simple, Future, and Future Proche is more than enough to have a normal conversation in French.
You should avoid learning other Past tenses at first, such as Passé Simple, since this one is used mostly for literature, along with Passé antérieur.
It’s vital to get the Passé Composé right before moving on to other, more complex tenses, cause other complex tenses will follow the same principle.
Aside from the Future Simple, which is a tricky one because of all irregular verbs, you can as well learn Future Proche, cause it’s way more simple and it’s used to express an activity you’ll be doing shortly after the conversation.
4. Listen to Dialogues and Learn to Reply
If your goal is to have a fluent conversation in French, you are aware that communication is not a monologue, but a dialogue. It means you get to ask questions and reply, give comments, approve or disapprove.
To practice your communication skills, you’ll have to practice both listening and speaking. There are countless resources available online, in the form of videos with transcripts, audio files, or written content.
5. Personalize Your Learning
Instead of learning generic lists of French words, think about what you would like to talk about and recreate it in the language.
Think about what you would say on a daily basis. This is a great way to reexamine your thought process.
What to Expect After Learning French for 7 Days
First of all, we can’t deny the fact that much depends on your current language background. You will progress faster if you already speak one that is very similar.
For example, people who speak Spanish or Italian fluently can learn a whole lot more French in a week than the average person.
Now let’s say you don’t speak any of the languages in the Romance language group. Your progress will depend on the amount of effort you put into your studies, and a couple of other factors, like your previous experience in learning languages.
If you’ve already gone through this process, it’s more likely you paved the way for learning any language, not just French.
Another factor will be how much time you invest in concentrated learning. If your mind wanders countless times, no matter how many hours you invest, you won’t get much closer to your goals.
It’s far better to study less and focused, than long hours without real engagement. It’s not about stuffing your brain, it’s about reusing the words, rules, and patterns in new ways.
After a week of learning French, you’ll be able to speak about everyday life in a very simple and limited way. The good side of it is that you’ll understand the process of making sentences, and be able to repeat some of the most used sentence patterns.
However, don’t raise your hopes too high. Most of the time, words will be at the tip of your tongue, and that’s because they are still located in short-term memory.
In the end, speaking French fluently in a week is achievable, but in a very limited way.
Nevertheless, the purpose of setting micro-goals like this one is to be able to track your performance on a weekly basis, which keeps you consistent and focused.
So, are you up for The Learn French in 7 Days Challenge?