Everyone recommends immersion as the ultimate way to being fluent in French.
While immersion in the language and culture is a great way to learn French, you might be thinking: “I am not sure when I will be able to fully immerse myself in France.”
What Is Language Immersion?
Immersion means complete involvement in some activity or interest, and it comes in so many shapes. Making your way to France isn’t the only way.
As a child, you learned your native language by being immersed in it; it’s not that you choose to learn your mother language, it happened that you had to, out of necessity! This is what immersion means.
The good news is that you can create your own homemade immersion set of rules, without ever leaving a house. Homemade immersion can mean you create an atmosphere and rituals that support your everyday French learning.
Here are the best tips on how to easily immerse yourself in French even when you are thousands of miles away from France.
How To Immerse Yourself In French: 5 Language Immersion Tips
1. Adopt A French Lifestyle
Get into French daily by watching, listening, reading, and doing everything you usually do in your mother language.
Instead of listening to your local radio station, pick a French one. If you prefer online shopping, switch your browser to get results in French. When making a grocery list, write down all ingredients in French. If you are into fashion, pick up a French fashion magazine or follow a French fashion blogger.
Make sure to follow the weathercast in French. You’ll know you’re fully immersed once you take an umbrella just because it’s raining in Paris.
2. Find A French-Speaking Community
It has never been easier to find people based on their interests or mother language. Think of all the online forums, Facebook groups, apps, and other places you can meet French people. Answering a message or asking a question on Facebook could start a random conversation. You’ll be amazed at how fast people respond.
Another option is to find a language pal. There are some great apps that let you talk to native French speakers. We’ll name one of the accessible apps for communicating and making friends.
Tandem is a language exchange app that allows you to communicate and learn from native French (or any other language speaker). The website is a two-way street, and in exchange, you will assist your partner to learn some of the languages you are fluent in. Not only, you’ll get to practice French, but you might also end up with a good friend.
3. Keep A Diary In French
It is well known that writing enhances memory. The act of expressing your daily thoughts and emotions in French engages your brain, and when your brain engages, it remembers.
It doesn’t need to be anything complicated. Just simple sentences about anything: from a day at work to a movie you watched, your daily routines, or a casual conversation with a friend. The end goal is to practice thinking in French.
Although at first, you will find the process frustrating because all sentences will continue coming into your native language, once you establish the routine, your passive knowledge will emerge.
4. Find The Content That Fits Your Level
While immersed in French, you must remain aware of your level limitations. If you are just a beginner, you may find that reading Sartre seems more frustrating than helpful. For that reason, it is crucial to find content that is appropriate for your level, so your challenges become attainable.
For instance, you could read product descriptions instead of a full-length article. Take a break from movies and watch a cartoon, or turn on the translation on video content. A single internet source where you can find a diverse range of content, from a wealth of news to grammar instructions, is TV5 Monde.
TV5 Monde is a huge database of authentic content deployed in different levels from A1-C2. There you’ll find any topic you want to explore.
5. Learn All Items Around You In French
Look around you, and try naming every object in French. Use Collin’s dictionary to translate, and keep a list of all items at your reach.
If you want to spice things up a bit more, label every item in your house in French, using sticky notes. It won’t be as practical, but the results will come in faster than you expected.
In the end
In this post, we discovered that immersion doesn’t necessarily require you to spend a year in France and hope you pick up French from scratch. You can gain the same benefits of immersion by creating your own French environment and setting up simple French daily routines.
While learning a language, motivation gives a boost, but consistency gives the results. To become consistent, we constantly need to be reminded by our environment to perform the desired task (Learning French in this case). That’s why creating French surroundings, or creating daily rituals that involve the language, work as a trigger that strengthens your French learning.
Try it out and share your results with us.