How to Speak French Like a Native Speaker (For Beginners)

Learn How to Speak French

Would you like to learn how to speak French? Maybe you’d like to travel to France or another French-speaking country? Maybe you took French in high school and would like to pick it back up?  No matter what your story, you’re in the right place here at Rype.

French is among the world’s most popular languages for English speakers to learn. The question is what’s holding you back from learning French right now?

Common Challenges to Becoming Fluent in French

As when setting off any learning journey, there’s always a sense of optimism, and then reality sets in. How do you really get started? What is the best way forward? Suddenly doubts creep in. The hurdles to truly becoming fluent in French can seem insurmountable. But by contemplating ahead of time the common challenges to becoming fluent in French you can put these doubts into perspective. These challenges are universal. Let’s list them out here and then learn how to smash through them.

  • Limited resources – The hardest part is always getting started. And this is even harder without previous experience learning French. Which method should you use? What will it cost? What’s the timeline?
  • Limited time – Along these lines, do we ever have time to learn French? How do we fit it into our busy schedules? What is our availability?
  • Limited accountability – And if we do find the time, what happens to our motivation over the long run? Are we able to stick with it, or do we need someone to help push us?

We considered all of this when we created Rype. We set out to solve these challenges barriers by creating a platform and community of teachers and students that allows you to learn to speak French online from anywhere at anytime. Each French teacher on Rype excels in their language teaching skills.  They’ve been interviewed and handpicked, so you only work with the best, And we’ve made all of this economically accessible.  Compared to a traditional language school, you spend only a fraction of time and resources at Rype in order to reach fluency.


Benefits of Speaking French Fluently

There are innumerable benefits to speaking French fluently. Some are internal, such as changing the way your brain works as far as learning and even perceiving the world. Some are external, such as the tangible economic benefits of being able to access new employment opportunities.  You may see more value in certain benefits more than another, but we’ll give you a rundown of the major ones:

  • Increase your attention span –  Scientists in Scotland demonstrated that learning a second language helps build your attention span. This translates into improved cognitive function in various ways beyond language.
  • Develop new career opportunities – Studies have shown that multilingual people rise through their careers faster and have greater earning power. This is because the job market is increasingly international and by speaking more than one language, you’re more in demand as a job candidate.
  • Build your confidence – As we’ll explain below, learning French is all about expressing yourself, communicating, connecting with people. There are very positive emotional side effects to spending your time working in these areas, and one of the greatest ones is an increased level of confidence.
  • Develop deeper relationships – When you’re fluent in French, there are whole worlds of people, place, and culture that open up to you in ways that simply aren’t accessible without knowing the language.
  • Travel better – Across Europe, Africa, and the Americas, you’ll find French speaking people. As a traveler fluent in French, your travel experiences will be way smoother, easier, and more meaningful.

10 Quick Tips for Speaking French Fluently

Implement these quick language tips and get started on your road to fluency today.

1. Stop being a ‘student’ in French.

This one is first because it’s most important. Most people who begin learning something consider themselves “students.” But with language it’s different. The ultimate language learners on earth are…babies! They absorb language faster than anyone because they simply inhabit the new language–it’s rhythms, sounds, expressions. In the same way, your goal should be one thing and one thing only: Thinking in and expressing yourself in French. Does that mean you have to read textbooks and finish homework assignments? Perhaps. But that’s less important than spending a night out with all native French speakers and immersing yourself in their conversations, trying to express yourself. Get over the “student” mindset and start “living” in French.

2. Don’t try to be perfect.

Along these lines, most “students” try overly hard to speak perfectly. They follow grammar rules and conjugations so closely that it actually slows them down.  Notice how little kids often make mistakes when they speak. It’s normal. And it’s because they’re not hung up on these mistakes that they learn so much faster than adults. The key is to just try. Find the flow in your conversation and stick with it. If you conjugate the verb incorrectly, who cares?

3. Overcome the “Mistake Fallacy.”

Another way of stating #2 above is that you have to overcome the mistake fallacy. This is the mistaken belief that you have to get things right to succeed.  The truth is that nobody really cares if you make a mistake in French, in fact the opposite is true. Native speakers will appreciate your trying hard to express yourself.

4. Have fun speaking aloud.

The only way to speak French is to SPEAK it. You have to speak aloud and have fun doing it. A good analogy is shooting baskets by yourself. This helps you warm up before you play with others. Here’s an easy trick: Listen to a podcast, then pause in various places and repeat what’s being said. Then attempt to “answer” the speaker’s questions. You can do the same thing with movies, acting out the scenes aloud.

5. Imitate native French conversations.

As a French learner you should key in on how French speaking people express themselves in any given situation. Listen in carefully when you’re at the cafe or a restaurant. How are they ordering food? Can you order yours the same way? Doing this “shortcuts” the tendency to try and translate everything in your mind before speaking. This is what you have to do to become fluent. Real life conversations are the best for imitating, but you can also achieve the same effect simply listening to movies, podcasts, etc.

6. Work with a French conversation partner or teacher.

Learning with a French conversation partner or teacher gives you accountability. But at the same time, it also gets you out of your head and into the real time interaction it takes to train your mind to speak French. Having this go-to speaking partner, this helpful coach who can help motivate us, is the whole purpose of Rype.

7. Switch your devices to French.

If you’re truly inhabiting French, this means your devices are in French as well right? Absolutely. Each little queue should reinforce the fact that your world is now in French.  After a while it will feel completely normal.

8. Watch Netflix in French.

Along these lines, you should be watching your favorite shows in French. If that’s not an option, watch with French subtitles.  The first option may not work if you’re just beginning as a French learner,  but once you’re at the beginner-intermediate level, dive deep.

9. Learn about French culture.

Learning French becomes so much richer when you’re actually learning it in the context of French culture. It’s not just boring old history. There are monumental works of literature, poetry, philosophy, cuisine, music, art, architecture, politics, all of which, when you begin to explore them, make your learning journey come alive. And in terms of fluency, you’ll pick up certain key expressions found in the culture, unique to the culture, which will stay with you and become your go-to idioms.

10. Travel with a French tribe.

This one may be the hardest but it’s the most rewarding. If you can travel with only French speaking people you’ll become fluent. If you can stay with only French speaking people you’ll become fluent. It’s that simply. This may seem scary at first, but being vulnerable is half the experience of travel. It’s what makes it rewarding and meaningful. And for you as a language learner, it’s what makes you fluent.

Classic Learning Tools for French

After having outlined these 10 quick tips for speaking French fluently, here are the classic learning tools for learning how to speak French fluently. Take some time to review them and see how they fit into your learning journey.

Private French Tutors

Live immersion learning is definitely the most efficient way to learn anything. This is proven by extensive research. Live immersion is up to 5-10x more powerful than traditional lectures. With a live teacher or tutor you’ll have higher retention. But there are other direct benefits. You get the right guidance. You shortcut the learning curve. You have accountability, someone to help motivate you over a long period. Become fluent in French is not a sprint. It’s a marathon. The right coach helps you make sure you cross the finish line.


French Learning Apps

Along with a private French teacher, language apps are supplementary tool to help you speak French fluently. We’ve reviewed several apps, including Babbel and Duolingo.  Overall, apps are effective tools when used in addition to but not in place of working with your teacher.

French Audio Courses and Programs

Language tapes and CD programs have been around for many years. While they allow you to listen and study on your own time, they epitomize passive learning. They don’t truly help you with your speaking skills.

Conversation Partners

We’ve written extensively about  conversation exchanges. These are beneficial f you have the time and patience to find the right conversation partner. The biggest issue with conversation exchanges is that you have to split the teaching and learning 50%/50%.

Learn to Speak French Online with RYPE

Rype helps you learn how to speak French fluently faster. You learn on your time. With research proving the effectiveness of learning with a private teacher, we’ve been able help 10,000+ members speak a new language, around their busy lifestyle. And best of all, our rate is way more affordable than a private language school. Here are the highlights of the major benefits we offer to our language students:

  • You can enjoy French speaking lessons from anywhere you are in the world (no commuting).
  • Your experience is with a native French teachers that you choose, (all of whom are handpicked and pre-vetted).
  • You’ll learn French online at any time of the day, any day of the week.
  • You’re only paying a fraction of the cost of a private language school.
  • You’ll be retaining more information and learning French faster.
  • You’ll be part of an exclusive community of fellow French language learners and global citizens.

If you still have any questions about how Rype works or want to share any feedback, feel free to reach out at Activate your risk-free trial now and start learning French online today.

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