Listen to Authentic French Music and Learn

Salut tout le monde!

Have you ever heard a song on the radio that you haven’t heard in ages and surprised yourself by singing all the lyrics? Or out of no where you pull out a jingle from your childhood?

Music and catchy rhymes/jingles stick in our minds for years, while verb conjugation charts and memorized data can poof! disappear.

Music activates both the right and left sides of the brain, meaning, if you remember something to a tune, you’re more apt to recall the words than if you just read it or heard it spoken.

Music in another language is not only beautiful, but it opens the students to the nuances of language and culture.

Songs help students learn a world language.

This is why I highly encourage students listen to French in all forms. In class we sing A LOT! We sing when we make a cirlce, when we clean up and when we sit down to start class. If you ask my students how they sit down, they’d likely start singing: Asseyez-vous (clap, clap) to the tune of Feeling Hot, Hot, Hot!

If you’re looking for ways to do this at home or in the car with your children, I have a few suggestions.

On the web, Radio France, NRJ, and Pandora. On Pandora, I love Carla Bruni and Keren Ann.

Download the app Spotify for free music. My favorite playlists are Nouvelle scene francaise and French Cafe Lounge. You can also check out France Top 50. Touch the browse tab, then charts, and then Top 50 by Country. Finally, click France Top 50.

Download the app Radio Française. My favorite is Radio Nova.

Happy singing!

Miss Madame


Learn French by Podcast

Salut tout le monde!
I found a fantastic FREE podcast that I’d like to share with you. It’s Learn French By Podcast. There are 175 lessons, starting with basics such as Introducing Yourself and Discussing Family to Talking about Superfoods. There are beginning, intermediate, and advanced levels.
For example, in the first lesson you’ll learn basic expressions, including how to say who you are, where you live, and what you do. You’ll also be introduced to three verbs.
It’s easy to listen to in the car and offers a thematic dialogue repeated a few times, followed mini lessons on the contents in the dialogue. You can listen to the podcasts for free on your smart phone.
Also, you can find the PDF’s for the lessons on the website for Learn French by Podcast. The PDF’s contain full dialogue transcripts, grammatical analysis, vocabulary, and cultural snapshots. There are five sample lessons for free and then you can purchase credits to get additional lessons.
Miss Madame

52 Weeks of Family French

Bonjour tout le monde!

I want to introduce you to a book that I recently purchased on Amazon, called 52 Weeks of Family French. I’m excited to share it with you and to try it at home with my daughters. We listen to French music (both childrens and contemporary) in the car and read French culture books in English and French, but admittedly we speak inconsistently in French.

Yes, I say bonne nuit and beaux rêves (good night and sweet dreams) to the girls. When I want to get them out the door, I say allez-y (let’s go!).

They know basic phrases, such as je m’appelle (my name is), but I haven’t worked systematically yet or embedded the language daily.

It’s my goal to up the ante this year at home, and in sharing this with you, maybe inspire you to do the same.

The book follow an auditory and oral learning model. There’s no grammar and no vocabulary drills here. It’s a natural way to learn a language. The book contains 52 small, achievable lessons that you can do at home with your child (even if you don’t speak French yet!).

The lessons are short and simple and can get you and your family to speak French in the moments you are together: mealtimes, morning “rush hour,” carpools, and bedtime. If you’re unsure about the pronunciation, your child will be eager to teach you and if that doesn’t do the trick, check out this site.

The first week focuses on Manners and using six French words daily: oui (yes), non (no), s’il vous plaît (please), merci (thanks), merci beaucoup (thank you very much) and de rien (you’re welcome). Practice the words when you’re together and if you’d like an intro to greetings, check out this Muzzy video.

What do you think? Want to give it a go?

Please share with me if you do and if you have any questions, please reach out and I’d love to help answer them.


Miss Madame

Around the World in 10 Books

“The love of one’s country is a splendid thing. But why should love stop at the border?”
– Pablo Casals




Ας πάμε!

我们去吧 (wo men qu ba)!

Let’s take a reading trip across the globe.

Whether you’re planning a family trip to France or simply want to expose your child to diverse cultures and people on planet Earth, you can bring out your family’s inner explorers through books.

I like to add favorites to our bookshelf at home, but before dropping $7 – 15 bones on Amazon, I usually opt for a first read for free. I search Chicago Public Library‘s online catalog. In Chicago, you can put up to five books on hold and have them delivered to your branch. When the book arrives at your local library, you get an email notification and a deadline by which you must pick up the book.

It’s so easy.

Around the World in 10 Books

Everybody Bonjours: I have an extensive classroom library, but this book my favorite passport to Paris. It’s the first read with my Kindergarteners in September.

If You Were Me and Lived In Mexico – The author, Carole P. Roman, is a formal social studies teacher. Her books introduce children to other cultures and countries such as Greece, Turkey, India, China, Australia, France, Kenya, Russia, Scotland, Portugal, Norway, Peru, and South Korea.

Olivia Goes to VeniceI wrote about this whimsical book here. 

Ruby’s Wish

The Name Jar

What the World Eats

Finders Keepers: A True Story in India

We All Went on Safari

Let’s Visit Istanbul: Adventures of Bella & Henry: This picture book series follows a doggie named Bella, her little brother Harry, and their family as they make stops in exciting cities, such as Dublin, Rome, Athens, Vancouver, Barcelona, Cairo, Venice, Paris, London, Edinburgh, Maui, New York, Berlin, Saint Petersburg, Beijing, Jerusalem, and Rio de Janeiro.

I Live in Tokyo

What’s your family’s favorite title? Please share in the comments.


Miss Madame