Progress Report – 11 Months of French

This month has been the best month in my French learning journey. I got a lot of positive feedback about the progress I have made in French.

I have taken an assessment test by University of Geneva and I have been assessed at Level B1. There are 6 levels in French proficiency  – A1, A2, B1, B2, C1 and C2. B1 & B2 represent an independent user who is able to manage in most of the everyday situations. B2 is the level that is required by French universities for you to enroll in courses there.

There was a written test and an oral test. I was asked to write 3 paragraphs about one scenario each in the past, in the present and in the future and I filled up the space given with my rantings in French. When the teacher saw that I have written a lot, I could see that she was surprised. After talking to me about a number of situations in the past, present and future and testing me on all the major tenses in French (passe compose, imperfect, future, conditional and subjunctive), she turned to another teacher and told her ‘This mister has learnt French on his own in just 2 years to this level’ and showed her  the page where I have written a lot of text in French. Both the teachers then congratulated me about my progress. They thought that I have been learning French since I came to Geneva 2 years back. But I started learning French less than a year ago. It felt really good – I did not expect to even be assessed at A2 level, and this came to me as a pleasant surprise and as a good confidence-booster that the non-traditional approach to learning French has really paid off. My wife has also been assessed at A2 level – It feels really great that we have been able to pull this off in just 11 months.

I have taken 2 more weeks of live classes at office and these sessions proved to be very helpful as the teacher stopped teaching and started giving us scenarios and asked us to talk impromptu. Even she told me that I am doing really well and all of my classmates commented about the fluidity with which I am able to talk. I am grateful that I have been able to find both Michel Thomas French and Assimil French courses which have helped me to reach such a level of confidence and flow in such a short time frame.

So, I had a lot of speaking practice last month in the French live classes. But at home, I have slipped – last month, I and my wife started talking in French for about 4 days and then we stopped. After a point, the initial enthusiasm waned off. I think that we are not so committed to practice French – anyway, there is no point in beating ourselves up about this. Let us see when we are able to get to that point when we could fully talk in French. We talk French in a lot of situations and I talk in French practically everywhere outside – in restaurants, bakery and in supermarkets.

I have started doing LiveMocha Active French and I have completed 3 levels so far. I have been able to progress very fast through the course as I know most of the contents very well. But I really like the writing exercises and the instant feedback that I got from community members on my writing.

At the end of this month, I will reach 1 year in my French learning journey – at that point, I will assess whether I have reached my targets that I have set for myself about 1 year back as explained in this post. See you then next month. I am yet to touch my French grammar book I bought one year ago.


5 thoughts on “Progress Report – 11 Months of French

  1. jobjorisarnold December 12, 2012 at 12:09 pm Reply

    Good to hear about your progress and thank you for sharing your enthousiasm. I think if you were to pick up that grammar book now, you will see some pieces of the puzzle fall into place. However, I’m sure you’ll see a lot of pieces too, that never puzzled you. 🙂

  2. Siraj December 12, 2012 at 12:26 pm Reply

    Thanks Job for your kind words. To be quite frank, I guess I will have a good time going through the grammar books as I am a big fan of grammar books in general, if they are written well. I hope I will enjoy the French grammar book when I get back to it after learning all the real-world uses of the language.

  3. Abdul Jabbar December 13, 2012 at 3:07 pm Reply

    one more feather in your cap……………………

  4. Roger December 13, 2012 at 3:22 pm Reply

    No words to say…. Simply Superb Progress……. Good to see the appreciation from teachers, that too in a progress of just 11 months.

    Bien fait. Le maintenir….

  5. […] I have mentioned in my last progress report, I have been assessed at B1 level, which is 2 levels more than what I have aimed for last year. […]

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