Well, I know, it isn’t always easy to learn a foreign language… that learning process sometimes can seem a bit too tedious…
But there’s a way to improve your language skills that’ll entertain you and be useful in equal measures – watch some TV series…
This way, while following a compelling story and having some actual fun, you will dive into the real-life conversations and sharpen your listening skills as well as expand your vocabulary.
There are other valid arguments for learning a language in this way:
– You can progress at your own pace. You can stop the programme and come back to the scene that you have not understood.
– It will help you recognise various accents and improve your pronunciation but also it will be easier to distinguish sentences and words.
– You will definitively improve your listening skills.
– Try to watch a programme with subtitles. First, in English, it will be less frustrating, if you find it difficult to understand, and then in the original language – you will really boost your vocabulary.
– In general, watching movies or series immerses you in a new culture and a way of thinking. Nevertheless, be careful because some shows can be a bit “cliché”.
7 TV programmes for a fun way to learn French
When choosing a programme to watch, start with something you feel comfortable with and just take baby steps until you are used to listening to French, then you will be able to grasp more challenging programmes.
So make a little effort, get off the beaten track and learn French with our best French shows.
Here’s a non-exhaustive list of the entertaining French TV series:
- Un village français (A French Village)
This TV series follows the impact of WWII and the German occupation on a small village (Villeneuve) in the centre of France. This story will help you learn more about historical events and how they shaped the French culture.
- Les revenants (The Returned)
A group of dead people come back to life and reappear in a quiet French mountain village. In the beginning, they act normal but after a while, a series of strange events from the past re-surface.
- Engrenages (Spiral)
This TV drama follows criminal investigations in Paris from 6 different angles: a prosecutor, a lawyer, a judge, two lieutenants and a police captain. This programme has a really well thought out screenplay which made it a success in more than 70 countries.
- Plus belle la vie
This series narrates the everyday life of people living in a fictitious neighbourhood called « Le Mistral ». This soap opera is popular in France and will certainly help you with commonly used expressions.
This webseries follows Max’s life, a typical uni student in Brussels. This short series is really funny, fresh and easy-going. We can easily relate to the characters and what happens to them.
- Un gars, une fille
This TV show follows the life of a young couple and how they face hilarious daily situations. This is a great show for learning everyday French expressions. This program launched the career of, now internationally famous, French actor Jean Dujardin.
This show follows an ordinary Parisian man, his dating mishaps, his job(s), his friends and daily life. It’s smart, funny, original and will keep you laughing for 2 minutes. The format is perfect for your everyday shot of French.
What’s better than being in bed with a cup of tea, your computer on your knees and not feeling guilty because you’re on your fifth episode of your favourite French TV series?
Yes, it’s educational so that’s fine… feel free to start the sixth!
Aurélie is an intern at Alliance Française de Cork September-December 2016. She got her degree in Information and Communication with a specialisation in work organization at Université Saint-Louis in Brussels (Belgium). She is now doing a Master’s Degree in cultural management at the Université Libre of Brussels.