Improve/ maintain your French
If you are learning French as your additional language (second language, etc.), then you need to use it as much as possible. It goes without saying that it is best to take every opportunity to speak it. But what else and what if your possibility to speak it is limited? Well, watching movies in French and listening to French singers or stories in French are also great ways to improve your French.
Besides all these things, I personally like reading. With modern technologies you can read an electronic book on your device anywhere: while waiting for a bus, while resting from your studies and work, in the evening or over a weekend, at home or in the open air. In a word, it is extremely convenient, relaxing, and inspiring. So, if you are learning French and need to learn it fast, it is an excellent way to supplement your main learning material/practices. If you already know French, but have limited opportunities to practice it, and still want to maintain your knowledge (“use it or lose” as the proverb says), then reading in French may be a good way to go about it.
What to chose for reading? It is best if you can find what you like. I love classic adventures. Therefore, I recommend “Les Aventures de Tintin” for personal use and use in classrooms for French learners. It is an excellent comics series (série de bandes dessinées). What are some of the advantages of reading this series? Here are just some of them:
- light adventure reading;
- intercultural intelligence enhancement;
- living (Balzac type) characters;
- images help to understand unknown words and to remember them;
- dialogic form of the narrative focuses on words used by French-speaking people in face-to-face communication;
- introduction of conversational cliches.
This link leads to the website where you can download the full collection of “Les Aventures de Tintin” in PDF: http://lakeridgeutah.org/french/fr3/readings/tintin/
This series was created by a Belgian author Georges Remi writing under his pseudonym “Hergé” (formed by the first letters of his real name). If you are interested to learn more about this author and the context in which the books were created, here is an excellent website containing a video interview with the author and other materials:
To recapitulate, if you are learning French, you can certainly read French books (like the series above) to diversify and further improve your language. If you want to maintain your French, but have little time to do so, reading is something you should be able to afford (time wise) and enjoy!