The 5 Best French Canadian TV Shows to Master Your Language Skills
Are you amazed by French spoken in Canada?
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Many language learning experts will tell you that the best way to pick up French quickly is to constantly expose yourself to the language. This means that you have to hear it constantly.
Of course, the best and most fun way to expose yourself to French is to travel to an area where that language is spoken daily and have conversations with native speakers.
While there are several areas in the world where French is extensively spoken, not everyone has the time or the budget to take several months off to study to those areas specifically to study French. As such, a good alternative is to expose you to French by watching, listening, and consuming media in French.
One of the most fun and convenient ways to expose yourself to French language speakers without traveling to a French-speaking area is to watch Netflix.
You can learn French with Netflix by regularly watching a TV series or popping in a French-language movie daily. This ensures that you are constantly, for at least a few hours a day, hearing people speaking in French and exposing yourself to the language.
Watching movies or television series on Netflix is also a great way to keep you engaged in your language learning. Visual aids, in general, are a great teaching tool as they keep you interested and will help you retain more information.
If you want to learn French with Netflix, it’s probably a good idea to forget about binge-watching first. Instead, try to make sure that you watch something regularly and maybe watch it more than once.
The first time that you watch, just concentrate on trying to follow along with the story and dialogue, to improve your ability to comprehend spoken French. You should also take note of how certain words are pronounced to improve your own pronunciation.
Then watch again, this time with subtitles, and concentrate on picking up common words and phrases to learn and memorize. You can then watch a few more times to try and learn and pick up different things. For example, concentrate on picking out the slang or the idioms used. Or else try and take note of people’s accents and how their mouths move when they say certain things to improve your own accent.
When you start to watch a show on Netflix to learn French, try watching it first with subtitles in a language you are comfortable with, then try watching it with French subtitles.
Watching a show with subtitles in your native language will help ensure that you understand what is being said and increase your ability to comprehend spoken French. Take note that, you should still mostly try and understand the French dialogue, but you should glance at the subtitles to ensure what you think you are hearing matches up with what you are actually hearing.
Watching a few episodes of a Netflix series with French subtitles is also a good idea. It will help improve your reading comprehension and also allow you to improve your grasp of French grammar rules. You will be able to see how French speakers form coherent and understandable sentences and this will help you when you yourself try to speak the language.
Seeing French “spelled out” in the subtitles while also hearing it spoken by the characters on the screen will also improve your ability to recognize common words and phrases. Not all words are pronounced phonetically, so being able to see a word and also hear how it’s pronounced at the same time will help you learn the word.
Don’t forget, if you find yourself a bit lost, not able to follow the following of the dialogue, pause, and rewind. There’s no shame in it and it will allow you to better concentrate on things to learn them better.
While you are watching Netflix in French, take time to jot down any words or phrases that are new to you. Afterward, you can take the list and try and find out their meaning.
Watching a Netflix movie or series in French is a great way to pick up French slang and even curse words. It is also a great place to find common French idioms and expressions. Take note of how the characters use them to get a better idea of what they really mean and when they are appropriate to use.
Vocabulary lists, where the word and its meaning are laid out for you to memorize, are effective but rather dull. Watching a French show or movie is a way for you to learn and internalize French words and their meanings in a more interesting way.
Seeing characters speak on the screen (and reading the subtitles that Netflix provides) will help you learn common phrases and words via context clues. Taking note of how they use these words and phrases will enable you to understand, via example, how you can use these words and phrases in daily conversation.
As we mentioned, you learn better and faster if you are interested in the topic. So, if you want to learn French with Netflix, you need to watch things that you find interesting.
If you can’t keep your mind from wandering during watching a serious French film or just can’t get into a French drama, don’t force yourself. Make sure to pick out something that you can enjoy and that will make you want to not just continue watching but also to continue learning.
As we mentioned, one of the most effective ways to ensure that you can learn French while watching Netflix is to pick shows or movies that you will find interesting.
Before clicking “play” on a French movie or TV series, do some research on what the show is all about. Look for brief descriptions or reviews that might not necessarily spoil you about what you are about to watch, but at least let you know what you might be able to expect.
To help you out, we’ve compiled a list of a few things available in French on Netflix and a brief description of the plot or at least the genre that the show falls under. Take a look and pick one that sounds interesting to you.
This popular French comedy series follows the lives of French talent agents as they attempt to steer their clients’ careers while keeping their own personal dramas in check. This series features a lot of guest appearances from real-life French celebrities so it is also an interesting introduction to French popular culture.
This French-language comedy series focuses on the Hazan family, who has traditionally made a living as butchers. Driven by economic hardship, they are now trying to change the family business, attempting to set up as cannabis growers in anticipation of marijuana legalization in France.
This crime drama series focuses on the hunt for a serial killer “The Mantis”. The twist is the original woman who was “The Mantis” was captured and jailed 20 years ago. In order to catch this copycat, a police detective who was the son of the original “Mantis” needs to team up with his estranged mother to find this new killer.
Chef’s Table is an awesome Netflix documentary series that focuses on cuisine from around the world. If you want to learn more about French culture and food while improving your language fluency, you should watch Chef’s Table France.
Another great series for those who are interested in learning more about French cuisine is the French version of the reality competition show called “Nailed It”. Basically, home bakers compete to make the best cakes, not just from their own recipes but also from recipes created by master bakers.
Looking for something that features traveling and a bit of “fish out of water” comedy? Check out this title, known as “Journey to Greenland” in English. Two Parisians travel to a remote village in Greenland where the language, culture, and customs are completely different from what they are accustomed to.
Do you like period dramas? Love watching social intrigue? Well, then you should definitely check out this series set in Paris in the 1800s. The series follows the lives of three women who survive a devastating fire that broke out during a charity ball.
A sci-fi romance set in a future Paris where a new dating app promises to help single Parisians find their soul mates. The focus is on a group of app beta testers who are testing the new app, which requires them to have an implant that scans and analyzes their brains to find their “perfect match”. As with most experimental technologies, things start to go a little awry.
With just six episodes, this is an interesting show to spend a weekend watching. A few old friends reunite on a vacation trip to a remote chalet. What is meant to be an idyllic getaway turns dark when they realize that they are cut off from the outside world and need to fend for themselves to ensure their survival.
This romantic comedy series is great if you are looking for something light and feel good. Follow along with Elsa and her friends living in Paris as they try to find love and romance and draw strength and support from the bonds of friendships.
A “spy” comedy set in 1960s Paris, follow the misadventures of André as he begins his career in the French secret service. He has no idea what he’s doing, but, to his dismay, no one really seems to care if he’s a skilled spy or not.
If you like stories about spies but are more into the “James Bond” type, check this out. Also about the French secret service, this thriller is based on actual accounts of the undercover missions undertaken by real-life former spies.
If you like political drama you should definitely check out this French TV series set in the port city of Marseille. Bonus? An interesting glimpse into the culture of Marseille, which as a historical port city has quite a multi-cultural history and some interesting traditions. If you want to see more of France than just Paris, Marseille is for you.
Another interesting French crime drama series, each season focuses on police investigating a rather strange and gruesome crime. For example, in the first season, police are investigating how and why six male corpses were dug up and posed in show homes.
French animation is not as “famous” as saying Japanese anime or American cartoons, but it’s an interesting and thriving industry. This five-episode mini-series is a fun introduction to what French animators are capable of. It follows two young children whose “short” vacation to visit their grandparents in Normandy gets extended due to the Nazis occupying France.
There are fun French learning activities such as learning with songs or games and, as we stressed throughout this post, by watching Netflix. It is still, however, really important to work with an online native French-speaking tutor.
After watching something on Netflix, you can talk about what you just watched with your tutor. They can help you understand any difficult words or expressions you came across, for one thing. They may also have suggestions as to what else you should be watching to learn French with Netflix.
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