6 Useful Tips on How to Read in French (+The Best Resources)

6 Useful Tips on How to Read in French (+The Best Resources)

Learning to read in French gives you a headache, doesn’t it?

Yes, it can be pretty challenging, especially because written and spoken French can differ.

But look at this ‘issue’ as a new experience. You already know to read in English. That’s a great foundation. It can be helpful while learning how to read in French especially when you come across the cognates. 

Since some catches are well-known for French reading, first, you have to be familiar with them so that you can read well in French.

And how to read in French without any struggle, find out in the following lines.

Let’s dive in.

Why You Should Work On Your Reading Skills in French?

Even though it is natural for many of you to learn to read while learning any language, others may find it unnecessary. 

That’s the reason we want to recall yo why you should learn to read in French in the first place.

  • Reading helps you improve your vocabulary.
  • The more you read the better you will understand sentence structure, using particular phrases, and improve your grammar knowledge.
  • Reading gives you the possibility to discover more and more useful resources for learning French, as well as some entertaining techniques to improve your existing language skills.
  • With reading, you can go wherever and whenever you want, even beyond the existing world. Imagine how good it would be to read in French some of your favorite stories and books.

6 Useful Tips to Learn How to Read in French

Start Step By Step

Learning to read in a foreign language is hard enough. We can imagine how difficult is to start learning to read in French.

That’s why you should start learning step by step.

For a start, you can start with reading and searching for similarities between English and French pronunciation. The French language tutorial can be very useful for that. Here, you can find French pronunciation created especially for English speakers with many audio examples that can help you practice.

One more site that is suitable for absolute French beginners is Apprendre a Lire (Learn to Read). A language learner is just like a kid starting to learn his native language from the first letter. It is made for French kids to learn to read but that’s one more reason why you should use it, too. 

Don’t hesitate to use every chance to practice French sounds. Speaking them out loud can help you hear yourself and compare to the native speakers from French podcasts, for example.

After some time, when you think you’ve got every French sound, you can try reading sentences from blogs, newspapers, or other French resources. Write down if some sounds might be a little confusing so that you can concentrate on them better.

Continue With Expressions And Sentences

When you get every sound how it has to be read, you can slowly start using them by combining expressions.

Depending on how they are placed in a word, as well as in a sentence, some sounds change.

One of the tools that can help you with that is Phonetique. Here, you can practice reading from learning the entire alphabet to pronouncing the words correctly. After understanding and learning process, you can practice what you’ve learned with fun exercises.

There’s no better way than to listen to the pronounced words and see how they are written. Forvo is a great tool for that. You can try writing down the word, then check if you’ve written it right, and finally, you can listen to how the word is pronounced.

Get French Dictionary

Dictionaries are one of the essential learning tools. Not only do they help you improve your vocabulary but also help you learn to conjugate verbs or to make simple sentences. 

Before you search for a word in the dictionary, try to understand the meaning from the context, which can help you pronounce and read the word by yourself.

For beginners, a basic French dictionary should be enough. After a while, when you get to the next, more demanding level, you should get a more advanced dictionary like Oxford-Hachette French Dictionary

When you are in a move and you need to look up a word immediately, you can use the WordReference dictionary from your device. It’s handy, especially when you are in a hurry. You can even get the app on Google Play or App Store.

Read More to Improve Your Reading Skills

If you want to improve your reading skills, you have to read in French every day, even if it is only one paragraph.

If you have a busy schedule, you can, for example, read some interesting articles over the morning coffee. Starting your morning with French newspapers Le Monde is a great way to start the day. In case you are in a hurry in the morning, you can read some French children’s book at night before you go to bed.

If you can find several minutes during the day, that would be a great opportunity to practice reading in French. 

Besides helping with pronunciation,  French tongue twisters can help you with your reading skills, too.

As you see, there are many entertaining ways you can try to learn to read in French but the primary thing is to practice reading every day.

Read With Audio Books

As we’ve mentioned, written and spoken French are very different. 

All those liaisons, silent sounds, and diacritical marks may seem scary, but they aren’t.

Therefore, we suggest you start reading along with the audio. This way, you can see the connection between how words are written and how they should sound.

At first, you can listen to the audio voice reading and follow in a book. Then, you can try reading by yourself without audio help. In the end, you can turn on the audio to check whether you’ve read that part right.

Here’s one more recommendation: try to read one paragraph without turning on the audio version. After you finish, turn on the audio to see if you’ve pronounced the words correctly.

Read As Many Different Things As You Can

Reading is fun and it should be enjoyable. Book lovers are well-aware of that fact. 

We’ve mentioned that it’s useful to read newspapers, but you don’t have to stop there.

If you like novels or comic books, go for it!

Poems are also acceptable. Not everyone likes them but if you do, you have plenty of fascinating French poems to enjoy and practice reading at the same time.

And let’s not forget blogs. Even though blogs are mainly written in English, there are a lot of interesting blogs written in French you can follow and read occasionally. 

The whole point is to practice reading from various resources. Make that a habit and include it in your daily schedule.

Final Thoughts

Even though it seems a piece of cake, reading is a learning process. It doesn’t come overnight, nor will you read perfectly the moment you learn the French alphabet, especially because reading in French is a little specific.

All that, however, doesn’t mean that you won’t learn to read. On the contrary, with constant practice and effort, your reading skills will come to a decent, and then perfect level.

Why you should work on your reading skills in French?

Even though it is natural for many of you to learn to read while learning any language, others may find it unnecessary. That’s the reason we want to recall yo why you should learn to read in French in the first place. Reading helps you improve your vocabulary. The more you read the better you will understand sentence structure, using particular phrases, and improve your grammar knowledge. Reading gives you the possibility to discover more and more useful resources for learning French, as well as some entertaining techniques to improve your existing language skills. With reading, you can go wherever and whenever you want, even beyond the existing world. Imagine how good it would be to read in French some of your favorite stories and books.

How to read in French?

Start Step By Step, Continue With Expressions And Sentences, Get French Dictionary, Read More to Improve Your Reading Skills, Read With Audio Books, Read As Many Different Things As You Can

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