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Monday, October 25th
Transparent Language has made huge changes since our last review. In the past, their French lessons were only available via outdated CDs and MP3 audio files - not very exciting. Now, however, their language learning platform is completely online and accessible from both computers and mobile devices equally.
In order to try Transparent's French lessons - or any other language's - you'll need to sign up for a free 14-day trial. Enter your age range and what your learning focus is (homeschooling, personal interest, etc.) and you'll get access once you create a username and click on the link in the activation email you receive. This gives you access to Transparent's complete library of language instruction, not just for French but for everything they offer: literally from A(frikaans) to Z(ulu). Transparent's French lessons are unique in that you can choose between French and Canadian French.
Once you've chosen which type of French you'd like to learn, you'll be taken to your main learning dashboard, which shows you the available learning paths, how much vocabulary you've learned, and many different ways to practice (e.g. Preview It, Recognize & Say It, Produce & Write It, etc.). There's a great series of orientation pop-ups that will walk you through those site features.
How you proceed through Transparent's French lessons is completely up to you. If you prefer a step-by-step, sequential learning path, start with the Welcome lesson and proceed through all of the lessons in Unit 1: Hello! You can reorganize the order of the lessons as desired, or click on the three dots to mark any particular lesson as learned or remove it from your Learning Path altogether. Transparent has a total of 40 French lessons across 8 units. They don't specify which levels of language learning are included, but in our estimation we'd say that the content ranges from beginner to intermediate.
Just working through some of the beginning French lessons, we really liked how well-rounded the Transparent approach is. We were reading, typing, listening to and speaking French using our computer's microphone all within the first few minutes.
Be sure to check out the links at the top of the site too. Under Resources, you'll find a link to a French proficiency test, blogs related to learning French, Transparent's Word of the Day, and more. You can also browse specific vocabulary categories like Business and Medical, take a class focused on the French alphabet, and so on. Finally, you'll discover the Kidspeak tab: if you have younger learners in your home, they might enjoy playing the games there.
We love that Transparent's courses are completely mobile-friendly through their Android and iOs apps. They can be downloaded for free; sign in using your username and the password you'll find on the computer version under "Go Mobile" at the top of the site, or scan the QR code shown there.
If you're looking for a competitively-priced program for learning French and you're relatively new to the language, Transparent Language is a great choice.
In order to know which type of French instruction would work well for you, ask yourself this question: "Why do I want to learn French?" For some, learning French is a requirement for school or work. In that case, choosing a provider of French lessons that will deliver the necessary vocabulary and grammar, reading and writing skills, and even pronunciation will be important.
You may want French lessons that will help you be a better-educated traveler. If you frequently visit any one of the 29 countries where French is spoken as an official language - not just France and Canada but also Switzerland, Haiti, Togo, and Madagascar, to name a few - being able to speak French fluently could make a huge difference. And, who wouldn't want to be able to confidently order coffee and a croissant in a Paris cafe?
Finally, individuals with family trees that extend into French-speaking cultures may be interested in learning more about their heritage and connect with living relatives.
With so many options for studying the language independently, what should you look for in the ideal French lessons? Here are some aspects to consider as you evaluate the many programs currently on the market:
TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best French lessons available today. We hope these reviews will help you get on the path to fluency in French quickly and affordably!
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