Free French Lesson - Worth Every Penny?

By: Dennis Cordy

There's an old saying that if it's free it's probably worth every penny - or, not to put too fine a point on it, if it's free it's worth nothing. But is that true of a free French lesson you find on the internet?

Like almost everything else online, it varies enormously. There is many a free French lesson offered which is just bait to try to get you to click on an advert, because each one of those clicks gets the website owner a few cents. If you find one of these sites it's all too easy to clicking from one place to the next in a rather fruitless and annoying search.

On the other hand you can come across sites like the BBC where their free French lesson set-up is extremely useful. There are small movie clips you can watch and respond to. Short interactive quizzes and follow-up material from such highly regarded bodies as the Open University (although this extra material will cost).

Sites like this are a joy to find and of great help when you're starting out. It's one of the huge benefits of starting to learn French online that you can listen to actual French audio clips - pronunciation is such an important part of learning any language. The BBC isn't the only site that is useful, it's just unfortunate that there are such a lot that are only interested in the advertising dollars rather than helping you learn French. I'm afraid there's a lot of rubbish to sort through to find the good ones.

But then it is costing you nothing so all you're wasting is a bit of your time.

Eventually however, and probably quite quickly, you'll outstrip your free French lesson. Even the good ones like the BBC's are very limited and really only for basic French in a couple of situations - like asking directions, getting a coffee at a bar, booking a hotel room, etc. All very useful stuff, well worth learning, but you'll soon grow beyond them and be looking for a comprehensive French course.

Unfortunately, to find one that's worth using, you'll eventually have to part with some cash!

The good news is that there are plenty of them and some are remarkable value for money. The best use all the advantages of your computer as a teaching machine and offer interactive French learning which is educational and entertaining. You can get courses that include French MP3s so you can learn at home or can take your lessons wherever you go.

So after you exhaust your free French lesson, never fear, there are a host of ways to continue learning the French language that are not a strain on your pocket and are fun as well!

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