Updates to Come Soon, I Promise!

Just a short message to let you know/promise that I will update the site soon. I fully intended on adding more comparative material and French exercises and listening resources this weekend, but of course real life keeps getting in the way. I actually have some revision and translation projects to work on, as well as phonetics exams to grade, and a real deadline that I have to stick to over the next few weeks. But the review of language learning communities and a new informal French video are coming soonish.  I only work 8 days at my real job during the month of April, so I should be able to get a lot accomplished then.

I have finally created a Facebook Fan page for ielanguages, so please join if you want to keep in touch on there. You may have also noticed the new Wibiya bar at the bottom of the blog, which allows you to see what’s happening immediately on my Twitter account as well as the Facebook Fan page. Plus you can quickly see what photos I’ve uploaded to Flickr and what videos I’ve uploaded to Youtube, choose to go to a random post on the blog, or translate the page into a different language. I especially like the Online feature as you can see who is online and where in the world they are. The power of the internet to bring people together when they are so far apart geographically will never cease to amaze me.

As am I going on 4 different trips this May & June, I’ve decided to expand the Travel Photos section of the site and add more useful information on traveling in general. I like sharing my photos and helping people realize that traveling, especially in Europe, is actually quite cheap and easy to do. And of course the whole point of traveling (at least for me) is to discover how a new language is used in everyday life and hopefully become a better citizen of the world by experiencing a new culture. So of course, I also want to add to the realia page by taking pictures of signs, menus, tickets, brochures, etc. for authentic exposure to the language instead of relying on instructional books that tend to only teach generic words that are not used often enough.

French desserts

In France, un cake isn’t really a cake – at least not in the American sense of the word.

Informal French Vocabulary: Common Expressions (New Video)

New video on informal French: Don’t forget to subscribe to my Youtube channel!

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Why French is Hard to Understand, Reason 17 of 428: Fake English Words

The real reason why French is hard to understand for English-speakers is the numerous liaisons (that I mentioned recently) and lack of junctures between words. English tends to pause more often between words and exhibit open juncture, while French pauses between phrases and links sounds between certain word boundaries so that determining individual words is […]

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Staying Legal in France: More Residency Card Crap (for lack of a better word)

La Préfecture, the love of my life. Immigrants in France must have a very close relationship with the préfecture. It’s the place where we have to go – every 3 months, in some cases – to obtain our residency cards and make sure we are not sans-papiers. France doesn’t exactly have a “permanent resident” status […]

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An Example of 21st Century Vocabulary

How many textbooks do you think include vocabulary words like this? If you don’t speak either German or French, the vocabulary word is “homosexual couple” and the sample sentence says “The homosexual couple is going to adopt a child.” If only that were true in more than 2% of the world… The next word is […]

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A Frequency Dictionary of French

A Frequency Dictionary of French: Core Vocabulary for Learners I just learned about this book today and I really wish I could go to a bookstore or library and look at it. Amazon’s Look Inside feature only includes the introduction and none of the actual content but Routledge’s site offers a few sample pages to […]

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March = Spring = Sun = Motivation

I was pleasantly surprised by the weather yesterday. Now that March is here, it seems like spring is too. It was sunny and not raining for once, so I got to walk to work. I hope it stays this way and winter doesn’t come back because the sunshine gives me motivation to actually get things […]

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Introducing: French Language Tutorial E-Book and Paperback Book

As of today, the French Language Tutorial is available for purchase as an e-book (PDF format) or as a coil-bound paperback book (8.5″ x 11″). It contains all of the original French tutorials (French 1-7) and French Phonetics, plus I included IPA transcriptions for most of the vocabulary lists and for all of the verb […]

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Online Language Learning Communities

I’ve decided I’m going to try out the free features of the online language learning communities, and report back with my findings (as well as prices for the pay features). But the first challenge is just finding all of the language communities. These are the ones that I plan on reviewing. Can anyone add others […]

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Teach a Foreign Language in the Accent of the Listener?

A study from the University of Haifa shows that “perception of second language speech is easier when it is spoken in the accent of the listener and not in the ‘original’ accent of that language.” So if you are an American learning French, you will understand French better if it is spoken with an American […]

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Why is Jennie no longer in France?

I created this blog in September 2006 when I moved to France from Michigan to teach English. Many of the earlier posts are about my personal life in France, dealing with culture shock, traveling in Europe and becoming fluent in French. In July 2011, I relocated to Australia to start my PhD in Applied Linguistics. Although I am no longer living in France, my research is on foreign language pedagogy and I teach French at a university so these themes appear most often on the blog. I also continue to post about traveling and being an American abroad.

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The 2nd edition of French Language Tutorial is available as a PDF book. It has been updated with much more vocabulary, sample sentences, and cultural information, plus extended vocabulary lists, cross-referenced topics, and an alphabetical index.

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