preparing for French A level

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maddiethorp
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think this is in the right forum, couldn't find one about languages. ok so I'm doing french A level in a few weeks, I've read literally everything about how to prepare and how to learn French in general and I literally do all of the advice. I'm good at writing and reading, not good at speaking at all but I'll post another question for advice about that after this. the thing is, I'm using my GCSE french revision guide to prepare, I didn't use it during my GCSEs at all, I didn't know a thing about grammar in my GCSE french and barely anything about tenses, I didn't even know the present tense endings, but I kind of just guessed everything and got a 7. Anyway so I've been learning all the grammar and tenses from GCSE and I have definitely improved so much in every way in my french during lockdown but I still struggle a bit and forget things from my GCSE grammar book, and there's things in there that I've never heard of. it's not like any other subject such as business, if I was struggling on the business content at GCSE then I probably wouldn't take it at A level, but this is an actual language. so basically the question is, is it that bad that I'm struggling on the GCSE grammar, should it be worrying me ? because it is literally a language, not a GCSE so maybe it isn't that bad, and I've read a lot and all people say you need to know for the start of year 12 is present tense, and 1 future and past tense, whereas I've got almost all of the tenses down solidly, idk I need advice
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LuigiMario
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I think about 1% of the British can speak French well, just a guess. I did GCSE French, then general-studies(with French) at A-level. I holidayed in France, listened to France Inter (talk shows like bbc R4 with some music), I read Paris Match every week, every word. Slowly.

Relax, enjoy the language! Try and go there for visits (when the world is more stable) or watch more French TV etc, ( buy Fransat satellite decoder cheaply on Amazon.fr? ) eventually you’ll get your A-level

Then what? Well in my case I ended up living in France, working in Switzerland, but living in France and started dreaming in French! Led to some interesting career choices
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maddiethorp
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(Original post by LuigiMario)
I think about 1% of the British can speak French well, just a guess. I did GCSE French, then general-studies(with French) at A-level. I holidayed in France, listened to France Inter (talk shows like bbc R4 with some music), I read Paris Match every week, every word. Slowly.

Relax, enjoy the language! Try and go there for visits (when the world is more stable) or watch more French TV etc, ( buy Fransat satellite decoder cheaply on Amazon.fr? ) eventually you’ll get your A-level

Then what? Well in my case I ended up living in France, working in Switzerland, but living in France and started dreaming in French! Led to some interesting career choices
thankyou so much, I already do a lot of things like this and I will definitely look into Paris Match but it feels like it's getting me nowhere, however I've only just started doing things like this so this gives me s lot of hope. what type of career choices did it lead to ? did you do a degree ?
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LuigiMario
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Career; certainly wasn’t the usual, as I made anti-matter for a few years ( mostly antiprotons, used for interesting experiments ) (I had diplomatic coverage as a “consular official” whilst doing that nuclear research, and I”m still diplomatic, still doing research); most amazing thing was when my dear friend & Ferney-Voltaire room-mate Anne came home one day with a serious boyfriend (Tim), we hung out for quite a few years - he was writing the protocols for an idea he had for interconnecting all world-wide computers, using simple links. Would “Tim’s hobby” ever catch-on, I wonder? sort of a web...

A degree wasn’t quite needed in those days, but it’s more of a requirement/good starting point nowadays.

I’m still (slowly) learning with the Open University, will probably finish a very interesting degree in the next decade - especially as we are solidly in the era of “life-long learning”
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LuigiMario
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Oh, and I was going to mention that Tim eventually became a Professor & a Sir Tim, which is great - and Finland awarded him a cool million euros as their first millennium technology prize, for “his hobby” - and Anne is doing better than that in international finance! I’m not quite as high-flying as they are, just I’m possibly earning more than the prime minister (depends on exchange rates etc)

And knowledge of the French language led to this, partly.... study but enjoy it too!

Professor Sir Timothy Berners-Lee used to read all my BD, bande-dessinee hardbound comics (French insist they are art) I’m sure his favourite was the hilarious Gaston Lagaffe (From the Belgian artist Franquin , now a film, https://www.imdb.com/title/tt6995612/)
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