In my quest to learn french in one year, one of the most difficult skills to improve on has been listening. It’s fine when it’s one sentence but when people are actually speaking it becomes quite difficult. My experience trying to watch movies or even different TV shows has not been excellent as I end up relying on the subtitles to understand anything at all.
The solution I found was to listen to podcasts and I’ve been trying a few different ones and here are three that I’m listening to right now. Overall I feel like it has helped me a lot in my listening but I still have a lot of work to do. I don’t get to listen to them daily but I try to at least once a week.
News in Slow French
One of my favorites since they speak French slowly as their title suggests and it lets you comprehend a little bit more. They have three different podcasts from beginner to advanced. The beginner version is a 20 episode “act” that you follow through. I usually listen to each act two or three times and I catch more and more things and the episodes do get progressively harder. If you go to their website you can get the materials to help you understand and learn the material from the episodes. Each episode is about 20 minutes long, highly recommended.
They also have the intermediate version which talks about news of the week and is updated weekly. Here the free version is about 10 minutes long and the paid version includes more stuff including grammar reviews. Right now my skill level wouldn’t take advantage of the full version of the show so I stick to the 10 minute free version and it’s nice even if I do not understand everything they say. They talk about mostly stuff in the American news outlets which makes it easier to understand since you have more context. The advanced version is for subscribers only but like I said as of now it’s not necessary for me. All their hosts are wonderful.
Journal en Français Facile
This podcast also talks about news and is about ten minutes long, you do get the full episode here and new episodes are released daily which are both really nice things that I like about this podcast. News here are a little more specific and they don’t speak as slow which makes it hard to understand but if you keep up with the news in general you can find enough to follow what is happening.
Learn French by Podcast
This podcast is all about grammar which is good since it can help reafirm stuff you’ve already learned. I do think it’s easier if you are already taking grammar elsewhere or it could be confusing. Each episode can vary in French levels but they do get progressively harder. Their website includes plenty of tools to help you learn as well which is also nice to have so many resources.