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Learn French with Craigslist

This might sound like a bizarre suggestion. How can you learn French using Craigslist? Well, it’s not exactly what you might think. Craiglist has turned into one of the most popular classified sites for not just buying and selling products, but also services and free barter exchanges. Here’s a brief list of ways to use Craigslist to learn French:

Find a French Tutor

Use Craigslist to find a French tutor located where you live. You will find them listed under services and, further, under lessons. Rather than scroll through the long list, just type in “French” in the search bar and it’ll pull up all French-related postings.

However, just because someone posts an ad on Craigslist as a French tutor doesn’t mean they are qualified to properly teach you French or that they have a native fluency in French. You have to do your homework. Ask many questions in your email or if you call them. Here are some good questions to ask a prospective French tutor or teacher:

  1. Are you native French speaker? If so, where are you from?
  2. How long have you been teaching or tutoring French?
  3. If they teach French as a profession, what level do they teach? High school, college? Master’s program? If they don’t teach French as a profession, but just tutor on the side, what do they do full-time for work? Best if their profession is related to the French language, e.g., French translator, interpreter, editor, etc.
  4. What materials do you use to teach French? Do I have to buy anything extra?
  5. How much do you charge?
  6. How many French students are you currently working with? Can I speak to a student or former student for a reference?
  7. Where you do teach at? Your home, my home, or café or another place?

These are good initial questions to ask. In terms of location, though, you are not limited to finding French tutors in your city. Depending on your proficiency level, you may be better off finding a native French speaker who teaches French in another city or country, and have online classes via Skype and a web cam.

Find French Grammar Books, Study Aids, Dictionaries, etc.

You would be surprised to learn how many people buy French grammar books, study aids and dictionaries, but never use them. Most people become fascinated with learning a language and they buy a ton of study materials to eventually learn that they are not willing to make the time commitment to really learn the language. Go on Craigslist under the “For Sale” section and click on books to see if anyone is selling their Learn French grammar books or study aids. Or click on “Free” and see if anyone is giving these away!

Find a French Conversation Partner

Finally, take advantage of the Community Section, particularly activities and classes to find French classes in your area or a French conversation partner. Ideally, you’d like to find a French native with whom you can practice your French in exchange for helping him or her with their English. Otherwise, you may find someone who is studying French like yourself and who needs someone with whom they can practice.

If you want to find a native French conversation partner, I recommend you post an advertisement on Craigslist in French-speaking countries, like France or Canada.

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