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How to Get the Most Out of French Podcasts for Learning: 6 tips for any level

    French podcasts are an excellent resource for language students looking to improve their skills. However, in order to get the most out of them, the right strategy must be in place. Here are some of our top tips for maximizing the use of French podcasts in your language learning toolbox:

    Break out your notepad 

    Make a note of any new vocabulary words and expressions you come across as you listen to the podcast. Make a note of any new or confusing grammar structures you come across. This will help you remember new words and will guide your future review.

    We all know taking notes is an essential part of the learning process. This is especially true when learning a new language, such as French. A study published in the Journal of Educational Psychology discovered that students who took handwritten notes outperformed those who typed their notes on a computer on tests. This is because handwriting forces the brain to process information more deeply, resulting in better retention.

    That study also discovered that students who took notes in their own words rather than simply copying verbatim outperformed their peers on tests. Summarizing and paraphrasing information requires the brain to engage more deeply with the material, resulting in greater understanding and retention.

    So, as you listen to your podcast, jot notes down by hand, and when you write the English meaning, paraphrase it. Better yet, try to create a sentence with the word and write it down.

    Pair podcasts with other tools 

    French podcasts complement other language learning materials such as textbooks, flashcards, and language learning apps. Combining tools will create the most well-rounded learning experience, whether you’re learning in a classroom or working up to fluency independently.

    We hope you will incorporate our daily short clips into your routine. We update the site daily, and our quizzes only take a few minutes of your time.

    Find the right podcasts for your level 

    It should come as no surprise that not all French podcasts are created equal. It’s critical to find podcasts that are appropriate for your skill level. This is essential for making the best use of your time and achieving the best results.

    Consider your current level of French first. Beginner-level podcasts will concentrate on fundamental grammar and vocabulary. Intermediate and advanced-level podcasts, on the other hand, will use more complex language and will discuss current events. They will not focus on teaching the language; instead, they will use French to teach something else. FrenchPod101 , for example, is a beginner-level podcast with slow-paced lessons that put the spotlight on grammar and vocabulary. French Your Way is a podcast for advanced students that features native speakers discussing a variety of topics in French.

    Another important factor to consider is the podcast’s format. Some podcasts provide structured lessons, whereas others are more conversational in nature. If you’re just starting out, you’ll probably prefer a more structured approach. Look for podcasts that explain grammar and vocabulary in detail (such as FrenchPod101 or Learn French by Podcast). If you are more confident in French, you may prefer a more conversational approach, such as French Your Way or French Language Hacks.

    Finally, you should think about your own learning style. Some people prefer visual aids, while others prefer to listen and still others prefer to read. Find podcasts that correspond to your preferred learning style. Podcasts such as FrenchPod101 provide transcripts of their episodes, allowing you to read along as you listen, which can help you learn more.

    On Bitesize French, we attempt to bypass these considerations by breaking even the most difficult podcasts down into small, bitesize clips. We believe that by hearing short clips on repeat with the transcript available, you will be exposed to natural language and gradually pick up more and more, regardless of your level.

    Practice listening and speaking 

    You can improve your language skills by listening and speaking while listening to podcasts. Podcasts allow you to hear native French speakers. They also provide you with a low-pressure environment in which to practice your pronunciation.

    First, try to imitate the speakers’ pronunciation. Take note of the speaker’s intonation, stress, and rhythm. Make an attempt to replicate it as closely as possible. This will help you develop your accent and increase your comfort level when speaking French—it will become more natural to you. As you practice, experiment with how your mouth moves; hopefully you’re in your car or somewhere private! However, learning a language requires you to sound funny at times. Some podcasts, such as FrenchPod101 or French Your Way, even include pronunciation segments.

    Another option is to speak in tandem with the podcast. In language learning, this is known as mirroring or mimicking. You can either pause the podcast and repeat what the speakers say, or you can try to say the text along with them. This will aid in the development of your fluency and confidence. Transcripts are available for each clip on Bitesize French. However, these speaking ideas do not require a transcript!

    French podcasts can help you improve your listening and speaking skills in a low-pressure environment. Use this time to practice your pronunciation by imitating the podcasters’ speech and speaking along with the podcast.

    Keep learning when you’re on the move

    Even when you’re on the go, you can learn French by listening to French podcasts. Listening to French podcasts on a regular basis can expose you to the French language and culture while also assisting you in developing your listening and comprehension skills.

    According to research, listening is an important component of language learning, and listening comprehension is closely related to overall language proficiency. In a British Council study, one of the most important skills for language learners to develop is listening, which allows them to understand spoken language and communicate effectively.

    You can also improve your understanding of French culture and customs by listening to French podcasts on a regular basis. At Bitesize French, w e believe that cultural immersion and language immersion go hand in hand. This is why we stay focused on content for native speakers. Understanding culture and customs will improve your overall listening comprehension.

    Repeat and Review

    When learning a new language like French, listening once is not enough to retain all of the information. This is due to the fact that your brain requires multiple exposures to any information in order to process and retain it completely. So play it again, Sam.

    According to research, repetition is an important factor in long-term memory retention. The findings of a study published in the journal Memory & Cognition, repeated studying leads to better information retention than massed studying (or cramming). And, unlike cramming, spacing out study sessions over time results in better retention. I’m extrapolating here, but this means that listening to the same podcast multiple times in a row will yield better results. The key is consistent exposure over time.

    Furthermore, actively engaging with the material, such as taking notes, summarizing, and paraphrasing, also aids in retention. As previously stated, pull out your notebook and jot down your own notes by hand. It will make a huge difference.

    Bitesize French expands on this by repeating each clip. You’ll hear things on repeat, allowing you to gradually develop awareness for each word in a segment. Not only that, you’ll be able to return to any lesson (once you’ve subscribed to our newsletter). This allows you to continue engaging with the same content over time, allowing you to master it.

    Put it all in place, right here.

    When developing our lessons, we consider all of these ideas. They provide the theoretical foundation for what we’re doing here. Our tool is simply another tool in your toolbox; we hope you can apply the ideas above to improve your French learning across the board.

    You’ll be able to get the most out of French podcasts and make significant progress in your French language learning journey if you follow these tips and strategies. Enjoy your listening!

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