I’m adding my favorite French Homeschool Resources to this post. It feels natural to learn a language through interacting with a native speaker. Most US parents who homeschool only speak English fluently, so we have to work a lot harder to get our children the comprehensible language input that they need in order to learn a foreign language. My children attend lessons with native speakers because I have affordable lessons in my area, but just those lessons aren’t enough to become fluent in a second language. There isn’t any magical foreign language curriculum, either. Or if there is, I haven’t found it. There are some good foreign language curricula out there for homeschool, but I don’t think a single source is ever enough to become fluent. I use lot of different sources to help my children learn Chinese, but what I had available was nothing compared to what I’m finding out is available for teaching French.
My kids love the Whistlefritz DVDs and music CDs. We only have French, and I do not even have the whole homeschool set. The homeschool set includes lessons, three DVDs, two CDs, and flash cards. It’s over a hundred bucks. You can get discounts at Homeschool Buyers Co-Op, at least for now. I’m not ready to commit to using regular lessons quite yet, and I was able to piece together enough for us for now. I borrowed one DVD through an inter-library loan, and bought the other two Whistlefritz videos through Amazon – it was a lot cheaper to buy them via instant video instead of on DVD. One of the CDs is on Amazon prime, so we can listen to that for free. I have checked out many language DVDs in Chinese and French (our library system is great) and Whistlefritz is by far our favorite. I’d have bought the whole curriculum already, but it’s too juvenile for my ten year old. My 7 and 5 year old LOVE IT. I hope the company is successful and does something for older kids, too.
Okay, so this is free for us but maybe not free for you. Our library has a membership to Mango Languages, so we get it for free. It’s not going to make us fluent on its own, but it’s a nice guide for a sequential trip through learning a foreign language. Mango seems better for older kids and adults, so to make it a little more fun for the kids we’re making some cartoons. If we post them you can find them here:
One free resource that I’d like to share are these bilingual French and English videos from A Green Mouse on YouTube. They’re free, the content of the videos is interesting to children, and they’re not boring. I feel like I vastly prefer hearing foreign language sentences over hearing just one word at a time. One word at a time gets so boring! There are language learning theories that say you shouldn’t have any translation going on, but there are other theories that say it’s fine. I mix. Sometimes we don’t have translation, and sometimes we do. This is one where we do. A Green Mouse has 96 French videos. You could do one every other day in your homeschool and get through almost the whole thing in a school year.