Janiel's Impressions from France - Language Growth

Janiel's Impressions from France - Language Growth


by Janiel Elizarraga Oregel

Well, after spending the first few days here in France. I could certainly say that I felt out of place, but it did not deter from the experience I felt while getting accustomed to France.

I've visited France one other time, however, it wasn't for that long and I only stayed in Paris as tourists with my family. Obviously, the two are different experiences. Having the two experiences just shows how the two contrast with one another. Without a doubt, living with a family offered a greater opportunity to speak and read in French which helps to ameliorate French skills.

It is definitely difficult to talk, read, and listen just in French. At the beginning I was more hesitant and would use basic sentences and a lot of "Oui's" and "Non's" as a response to a question. My comprehension from the beginning was like a 50-60% since everyone spoke very fast and the heavy accent.

The short responces and the lack of total comprehension was when I knew that I had to speak with complexity now and make a greater effort to understand not only what others say, but what I say as well.

I was a little nervous speaking these complex sentences since I did not want to make any errors. It did not go as planned I made several errors when I spoke more with my host family. However, they did not crucify me for those errors. They actually said I was really good at French. As for my comprehension I watched the news and sports and some movies on French so I could get accustomed to the speed that they speak. It was difficult, but now I believe that I understand like 70-80% of what people say now.

I did not really believe that I was good enough to get complimented on my French by actual French speakers. I guess the best feeling was I felt was hearing that I was better at French than the last two Americans they hosted. The compliments did not stop there. I received compliments from my host family's friends. Naturally, I was still suspicious that I could even speak the language well.  I started to believe it when my host family began telling store clerks and ice cream stand people. Well, those people interrogated me and asked which state I lived in and how many years have I studied French.  The strangers even said that I spoke very well for an American. I was like whoa I guess I'm a good speaker. It's a great feeling getting complimenting and actually understanding what people from another country are saying.
Well that's it for now see ya.