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La Puce 07-02-2006 03:37 PM

Distance Learning/Correspondence Courses

Rusty Hinge 2 wrote:

Je suis que Je suis, mai Je ne suis pas que Je suis.

Je suis CE que je suis, mais je ne suis pas CE que je NE suis pas. If

that’s what you want to say :o))

I tend to the ‘little bit of grammar and vocabulary, then throw in the
deep-end’ approach. By this method I learnt quickly, and at school I
spoke French quite fluently, gaining 95% for GCE French Oral.
I was so surprised to learn last Friday at the parents evening, that my

son’s French GCSE oral is basically French sentences thrown at him and

he only has to say *in English* what it means. He, like his father, his

dyslexic, and cannot write to save his life, but mumbles behind his

long hair some French ‘deep-end approach a la Rusty’ I’d imagine, and

get away with it anywhere in France with the other teens he encounters.

My other son is different. He is very like me, wants to know it all,

well, the way it should be, properly, entirely, clearly, in your face

and right now. Good lad :o)

J’ai forgottenai most de it maintenant innit.
Never mind. If we happen to descend to Jenny’s house one of these days,

I’ll hold your hand across the channel, don’t worry.

JennyC 07-02-2006 03:47 PM

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“Janet Baraclough” wrote in message

The message
from “JennyC” contains these words:

Warning OT :~)
I (almost) had an argument with one of our prospective new neighbours
(Dordogne)
about learning French. She was of the’ “one needs to know the grammar before
even stating out” whereas I am of the “parrot school of learning” :~
I’d agree with her. In the case of French, a very early basic dose

of the declension of common irregular verbs makes the most basic daily
understanding, reading and speaking so much easier. It enables the
listener to recognise he’s just hearing or seeing variations of the
same frequently used verb (ai, as, avons, avez , ont, all mean “have”;
they also form part of the past tense of regular verbs ). They’ll be
listed in the early pages of a basic grammar book. Even just recognising
(by ear and in print) the forms of etre and avoir gives a massive
advantage.

If one has that basic grasp of the commonest verb variations, it’s then

quicker and easier to pick up French by “total immersion” which as you
say is the best way to learn a language. Can you get French TV at home?
Janet.

Yes, and I’m listening to it sometimes………..

Jenny

Rupert 07-02-2006 03:54 PM

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“Janet Baraclough” wrote in message

The message
from “Rupert” contains these words:

if she really says “one” as the subject then forget
the wine:-)

Course she does, “on” doesn’t carry the same stilted connotation in

French that “one” does in English. It’s a also a delicate French social
courtesy to frame a little correction, or assertion, in the third
person, less confrontational than using the first or second.

snip

Mea Culpa. I just assumed that the neighbour was English and doing a

“Oh darling one must get to grips with basics” act.

I have been watching too many of those tele programmes with people

emigrating, living in communes and running burger bars .

Emery Davis 07-02-2006 04:32 PM

Distance Learning/Correspondence Courses

On Tue, 07 Feb 2006 14:57:55 +0000

Sacha wrote:

On 7/2/06 14:24, in article , “Nick
Maclaren” wrote:

snip

In particular, if you have not learnt to hear certain sounds by

the age of 5 or so, you probably never will – even if you have
an early hearing problem that is later corrected.

I don’t know if this is correct but I was told some years ago that the
Lycée International won’t accept anyone who did not start to learn French by
the age of four. This was told me by someone who had been through that
system and he said that this was because after that age it is ‘impossible’
to learn to pronounce French as the French themselves speak it.
Gaah! Trying desperately to stay out of this OT stuff, this time! 🙂

I’m not sure which lycée you’re referring to, Sacha, but that is

certainly not true at any of the Lycées Internationals that I’ve

come across. My kids were at the Lycée Laperouse in San Francisco,

which is one of the ecoles homologuées in the network, and they certainly

would except non-French speakers up to sixieme; after that French

was required but I never heard of a beginning age requirement.

We have some Greek/Spanish friends whos kids were in the

Lycée International in Palma, they entered later, and it seemed

to be a very cosmopolitan student body.

This said, I don’t doubt that at least to some extent each school

can set it’s own rules, maybe your acquaintance’s school was

particular in this respect.

The Lycée system is great because if you move a lot, your

kids can pick up in a new city basically on the next page of

the same textbook. They really do all march in lock-step.

And as they are about 40% in English, they turn out

perfectly bi-lingual teenagers, bless ’em.

Now, off to prepare some of those strange concoctions

for dinner! 🙂 (OK, actually I’ll probably take some of

last years broccoli out of the freezer. There, back on

topic.)

-E

Emery Davis

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Rupert 07-02-2006 04:52 PM

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“Sacha” wrote in message

id…

On 7/2/06 14:24, in article , “Nick
Maclaren” wrote:

snip

In particular, if you have not learnt to hear certain sounds by

the age of 5 or so, you probably never will – even if you have
an early hearing problem that is later corrected.

I don’t know if this is correct but I was told some years ago that the
Lycée International won’t accept anyone who did not start to learn French
by
the age of four. This was told me by someone who had been through that
system and he said that this was because after that age it is ‘impossible’
to learn to pronounce French as the French themselves speak it.

Sacha

www.hillhousenursery.co.uk
South Devon

)

I am certain that I recall that or something very similar. There was that

Franglais thing (again) which I think was all part of the same pantomine.

I thought it was about preserving the purity of the French language but

didn’t realise it extended down as far as pronounciation.

La Puce 07-02-2006 05:05 PM

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Emery Davis wrote:

Now, off to prepare some of those strange concoctions
for dinner! 🙂 (OK, actually I’ll probably take some of
last years broccoli out of the freezer. There, back on
topic.)

If in doubt saute the lot in butter and garlic – just like the kale I

prepared last night. Turned out all fluffy and smooth like mashmallows.

Now that’s what we call concocting from where I’m from ;o)

Sacha 07-02-2006 05:09 PM

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On 7/2/06 14:00, in article

,
“Rusty Hinge 2” wrote:

The message
from Sacha contains these words:
On 7/2/06 12:26, in article
, “Judith
Lea” wrote:

Yes Janet, you sound just like my husband – my French is great, everyone

hangs on to my every word – they just stare at me. My husband then
explains (in a restaurant) that I have just asked for Duck jam instead
of confit d’canard.

This sounds like one of my better gaffes in Italian – hot, bothered and
beleaguered by my children, I was doing some food shopping. I asked the
startled shopkeeper and his heavily pregnant wife if I could have ‘sei
pommerigi’ instead of ‘sei pommodori’ – six afternoons, instead of six
tomatoes. Once she realised I was not inviting her husband into a career as
a gigolo, the wife laughed so much I thought she was going to give birth
then and there!
And my sister while at the University of Pisa, asking for ‘finoccio’ –

take your pick, either fennel or a gay bloke. She very soon learnt to
point to suggestively shaped vegetables too, and ask for half a kilo of
those, and three of those, and…
One needs to watch out when asking for ‘una fica’, (fig) too…. I thought

farfalle were gay men but now I think I’m thinking of mariposa which is
Spanish and I don’t even speak Spanish! (Both are butterflies) My mother
outlaw was Italian so from my ex I learned a tiny smattering of Italian and
it was enough to finally tell a very rude and unpleasant ski-lift attendant
who had been shouting and whinging and bossing everyone about for a week, to
“**** off”, after he’d tried to push one of my children into place. It’s
extremely rare for me to use such language but it was worth it to see the
look of astonishment on his dropped jawed face and the improvement in his
behaviour was astounding!

The French waitress was also rude in that she corrected me three times
when I asked for the desert menu, it was amusing the first time she
stressed the pronunciation; and I then tried to say it as she said it,
she repeated it again, in a louder voice, and again I tried but when she
repeated it to me, in a very loud voice, for the third time, I retorted
with just bring me the ****** menu please (in my best French of course).
After all I had gone there to eat not to have a French lesson!
VERY rude! But I think that a smattering of the basics and then as much
chat as you can get your hands on is a very good way to learn a language.
If you have just a start in the verbs and how to ask for a few things in
shops etc., it’s remarkable how quickly you can build on that. Some friends
of mine moved to France several years ago and spoke what was really very
basic school French. They made a deliberate choice to live where there were
no foreigners and within a year they had made almost entirely French friends
and were yakking away nineteen to the dozen.
It’s loike thet hair in Naaaaarfk, thet it is. Dew yew troy tew foller

some squit sometimes and yer lorst.

Ray said he had someone working for him who was from Suffolk and he used to

say of the Norfolkians “‘e’s so thick ‘e doan know its rainin’ ’til ‘e sees
it splashin’ on the duckpond” 😉

Sacha

www.hillhousenursery.co.uk

South Devon

)

Sacha 07-02-2006 05:16 PM

Distance Learning/Correspondence Courses

On 7/2/06 16:32, in article

, “Emery
Davis” wrote:

On Tue, 07 Feb 2006 14:57:55 +0000
Sacha wrote:

On 7/2/06 14:24, in article , “Nick
Maclaren” wrote:

snip

In particular, if you have not learnt to hear certain sounds by

the age of 5 or so, you probably never will – even if you have
an early hearing problem that is later corrected.

I don’t know if this is correct but I was told some years ago that the
Lycée International won’t accept anyone who did not start to learn French by
the age of four. This was told me by someone who had been through that
system and he said that this was because after that age it is ‘impossible’
to learn to pronounce French as the French themselves speak it.
Gaah! Trying desperately to stay out of this OT stuff, this time! 🙂

I’m not sure which lycée you’re referring to, Sacha, but that is

certainly not true at any of the Lycées Internationals that I’ve
come across. My kids were at the Lycée Laperouse in San Francisco,
which is one of the ecoles homologuées in the network, and they certainly
would except non-French speakers up to sixieme; after that French
was required but I never heard of a beginning age requirement.
We have some Greek/Spanish friends whos kids were in the
Lycée International in Palma, they entered later, and it seemed
to be a very cosmopolitan student body.

This said, I don’t doubt that at least to some extent each school

can set it’s own rules, maybe your acquaintance’s school was
particular in this respect.
Could be, Emery. He was Australian but he was a bit of a conceited wind up

merchant so for all I know, it was a load of codswallop.

The Lycée system is great because if you move a lot, your

kids can pick up in a new city basically on the next page of
the same textbook. They really do all march in lock-step.
And as they are about 40% in English, they turn out
perfectly bi-lingual teenagers, bless ’em.

It sounds excellent, IMO, though I have no experience of it myself. When my

half French nieces lived in Thailand, they went to the Ecole deux langues
(if I remember that name correctly) and were perfectly suited, being
bilingual to start with. They speak both French and English so well that
they can start a sentence in one language and finish it in the other and of
course, their accents are perfect in both – sickening. 😉

Now, off to prepare some of those strange concoctions

for dinner! 🙂 (OK, actually I’ll probably take some of
last years broccoli out of the freezer. There, back on
topic.)

-E

Bravo! 😉

Distance Learning/Correspondence Courses

Nick Maclaren writes

In particular, if you have not learnt to hear certain sounds by the age
of 5 or so, you probably never will – even if you have an early hearing
problem that is later corrected.
That matches my experience. A relative of mine had an early hearing

problem, corrected when he was four, but continues to have speech

difficulties consistent with an inability to distinguish between sounds

that the rest of us can differentiate with ease.

Kay

La Puce 07-02-2006 05:37 PM

Distance Learning/Correspondence Courses

Sacha wrote:

When my

half French nieces lived in Thailand, they went to the Ecole deux langues
(if I remember that name correctly)

Ecole de Langue.

La Puce 07-02-2006 05:38 PM

Distance Learning/Correspondence Courses

Sacha wrote:

When my

half French nieces lived in Thailand, they went to the Ecole deux langues
(if I remember that name correctly)

Ecole de Langues.

Emery Davis 07-02-2006 09:06 PM

Distance Learning/Correspondence Courses

On 7 Feb 2006 09:37:23 -0800

“La Puce” wrote:

Sacha wrote:

When my
half French nieces lived in Thailand, they went to the Ecole deux langues
(if I remember that name correctly)

Ecole de Langue.

umm, I am diffident about correcting you, but wouldn’t it

be “ecole bilingue?” That is, a school taught in deux langues,

as it were.

-E

Emery Davis

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Emery Davis 07-02-2006 09:16 PM

Distance Learning/Correspondence Courses

On Tue, 07 Feb 2006 17:16:29 +0000

Sacha wrote:

On 7/2/06 16:32, in article , “Emery
Davis” wrote:
[]
This said, I don’t doubt that at least to some extent each school
can set it’s own rules, maybe your acquaintance’s school was
particular in this respect.

Could be, Emery. He was Australian but he was a bit of a conceited wind up

merchant so for all I know, it was a load of codswallop.

Well, sounds like he graduated from French high school! 🙂

The Lycée system is great because if you move a lot, your
kids can pick up in a new city basically on the next page of
the same textbook. They really do all march in lock-step.
And as they are about 40% in English, they turn out
perfectly bi-lingual teenagers, bless ’em.

It sounds excellent, IMO, though I have no experience of it myself. When my

half French nieces lived in Thailand, they went to the Ecole deux langues
(if I remember that name correctly) and were perfectly suited, being
bilingual to start with. They speak both French and English so well that
they can start a sentence in one language and finish it in the other and of
course, their accents are perfect in both – sickening. 😉
The international system is indeed excellent, usually better than

the schools here, with a few notable exceptions. I’m sad to say

I’ve had to take my kids out of the local village school this fall,

where they were 3 years together in a class (which has some

advantages), due to the suicide of the headmaster.

Anyway my kids now miss no opportunity to correct my

accent. And speak remarkably little franglais, considering

how much my wife and I do… The little, uh, darlings. 🙂

Now, off to prepare some of those strange concoctions
for dinner! 🙂 (OK, actually I’ll probably take some of
last years broccoli out of the freezer. There, back on
topic.)

-E

Bravo! 😉

I did get to make it a little concocting, by retrieving a bag

of frozen cepes from this fall too. It was an incredible

mushroom bounty this year, no one had ever seen the

like of it. We were cutting 5 kilos of cepes (boletus ed.) in

20 minutes, all within 200 yards of the house! Went on

like that for weeks.

-E

Emery Davis

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La Puce 07-02-2006 10:14 PM

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Emery Davis wrote:

umm, I am diffident about correcting you, but wouldn’t it
be “ecole bilingue?” That is, a school taught in deux langues,
as it were.

Ecole de langues (avec un ‘s’ as my other post – had forgotten to add

😉

But no, it’s either ‘Ecole bilingue’ indeed or ‘Ecole de Langues’,

shool of languages. Ecole deux langues doesn’t exist in Thailand.

Emery Davis 07-02-2006 10:43 PM

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On Tue, 07 Feb 2006 17:27:25 +0100

Martin wrote:

On Tue, 7 Feb 2006 16:47:35 +0100, “JennyC”
wrote:
[]
Yes, and I’m listening to it sometimes………..

… watch it with the French subtitles on.

Easy with France 2, more difficult with TV5.

At least you will improve your reading ability. 🙂

Television is a good way, although, better without subtitles.

When I first moved to France in ’90 I determined that I

should watch a show that was so plotless that I would be

able to follow even with my quite limited French. Starsky

and Hutch was on daily — Starzky et Ootch — so after

several weeks I was equipped to commit a hold-up:

“Haut les mains!” Or to do police work, I suppose. 🙂

On the subject of silly mistakes made in a second language,

I have two stories that are a bit ribald. The first from my

french cousin, who emigrated to the States after the war having

married a GI. They were at a “dry” dance, that is, no

alcohol. She asked her new husband when they could get

a drink, he told her “at intermission.” Later she was dancing

with another fellow, and becoming overheated came out

with this broken gem: “When we do intercourse?” The

gentleman replied, “I think we’ll find your husband now…”

My own experience was equally embarrassing. Newly arrived,

we needed a whisk. Determined to exploit Paris to the

fullest, off we went to the fine kitchen supply store

Delerhin for the purchase. Making the effort, I consulted

the dictionary, and armed (so I thought) with the local jargon

for whisk, we sallied forth. Faced with the helpful salesman

inside the door of the place, I stammered my much rehearsed

sentence, “Bonjour Monsieur, j’ai besoin d’une verge.” The

fellow glanced over at my wife, then regarded me without

expression. I had just literally said “Hello, I need a penis.”

Honest to God. His response, deadpan, was “You’ll

have to see my colleague for that item.”

All of which shows, television is bad for you. 🙂 And

dictionaries, too. Hmm, off to watch Eastenders…

-E

Emery Davis

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