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french class reboot

i really want to learn to speak french. i really really do. but i think my brain is getting in the way.

i took french in high school. two years, in fact. and there’s a basis of french vocabulary that i retain from that.

but getting past that base is proving to be pretty difficult.

kirk and i took two french classes last year, and learned a lot. the second class was especially good, as we were the only two people in class and had a great teacher, so it was like a tutoring session instead of a class.

but then i had my back surgery, and had to take time off, and when we went back for the third class we had a truly horrible classmate that just made the experience intolerable. one person can really ruin a class, especially if they are small classes to begin with. and i was miserable anyway, with my back freshly surgeried.

so we took a credit for the money we had paid, and we are now using that credit to start the third class again.

after a year has elapsed.

and i’ve been frantically reviewing my notes for almost two weeks now, every day. and i’ve gone to online sites to take online quizzes, and i’ve listened to my tapes over and over, and on and on.

it’s semi-returned, but there’s a point past which i have trouble going. and that point is the acquisition of new vocabulary, which i have trouble retaining. i can learn grammar rules, and apply them to the words i know. the first two classes were all about that, and of course the basics, and most of it was just a review for me. it was all buried in the back of my brain, and came back out.

and kirk knows more than i do to start with, and has a somewhat easier time retaining new vocabulary than i do. he hasn’t done a tenth of the reviewing that i have, and he still knows more than i do. which is ultimately good for me, i know. you always want to be around people who know more than you do. but it still makes me skittish about the whole thing.

and the third class is all about new vocabulary. i’m hoping that immersion will help. i feel like i’m at a further disadvantage having been gone for a year. everyone else in class will probably be coming straight from french two. aaaargh.

maybe i’ll get the cable channel tv5 back–it’s $10 a month but is all french all the time, and may be worth it.

can you tell i’m nervous? back to school for me today. it’s karmic payback for all those high school students i terrified on their first day in my class.

nervous. nervous. nervous.

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