Whether you downloaded the free guide to use subtitled videos to learn or wanted to read a transcription, it means you’re serious about working on your listening skills and that’s awesome! You’re probably also looking for the best podcasts to help you improve your French.
This article is part of my free “Eureka moments to propel your French further” coaching sequence. Sign up here
In the process of learning a language, it’s important to maximize exposure to the target language.
Podcasts are some of the best tools to achieve this.
You can listen to them anywhere to familiarize yourself with the rhythm of the language and its sounds.
There are so many options these days!
So, how do you choose which ones to listen to?
When picking a podcast, ask yourself just two questions:
1️⃣ Can I understand between 75 and 100% of the content? (You don’t need to be able to grasp all the nuances)
2️⃣ Do I know the topic and am I interested in it? (You’ll be more familiar with the context, the vocabulary and ideas expressed).
💡 Beyond stereotypes: explore a variety of French to find YOUR French voice
In our life, I think it’s important to combine 2 things:
- Positive role models of people who look like us (men, women, non-binary, queer, racial and socio-cultural heritage…)
- Expanding our perspectives by listening to other people’s accents and experiences even though they may not look like us on the inside.
I see the list I compiled as a starting point and I invite you to continue exploring by yourself! It’s especially important in French, I believe, because we tend to be exposed mainly to a purely “French-from-France” perspective (mostly white and straight by the way).
Because of that, we build in our mind a false representation of an “ideal French” (which doesn’t exist!). As learners, comparing yourself to this standard can impede your progress, even as you reach a stage of near-native fluency.
🖋️ I’m curious: have you ever felt “not enough” to call yourself a French speaker? Feel free to hit reply and share your thoughts about this!
Where do I find the best podcasts?
I’ve made this part easy for you, I’ve come up with a list of the best podcasts by level to help you decide.
Podcast for Intermediate to Advanced French Learners
I’ve created a podcast designed specifically for French learners like you. In some episodes, I interview guests and discuss their journey with French and/or expatriation and many other interesting topics. Many of the guests are not native French speakers. They will demonstrate that mistakes don’t stop the conversation from flowing nicely. So I hope this will inspire you to dare to speak French yourself! All episodes come with a transcription. Let me remind you of the password in case you didn’t see it in the first email: **check your email**.
Tip to improve: mix active and passive
Some people can learn a lot just by listening. But to make the most of what you’re learning by listening, it’s important to put it into practice.
I recommend engaging in active learning to make the language stick in your long-term memory through oral and written practice linked to the podcast.
Some people can learn a lot just by listening. But, to get the most out of what you learn by listening, it is important to put it into practice.
I recommend engaging in active learning to allow the language to stick in your memory for the long term with oral and written practice related to the podcast.
Have you ever tried practicing listening and comprehension with dictations?
It is a very powerful tool! I have designed a program especially for learners: a guided path to learn how to use dictations and 4 examples to practice.
2 weeks to improve your listening comprehension and more with dictations (from level B1)
- 4 dictations and follow up activities
- Vocabulary explained
- Tools to self-correct and plan your studying independently
- The possibility to book a coaching session