Plenty of people in the English-speaking world did get an introduction to French (French classes NYC) when they were still in grade school or high school. French is still one of the most commonly taught languages in the world. However, a lot of people allow the language to slip away the moment that they leave their school environments. Some people would rather hold onto the skill, but their schedules will quickly interfere, and they will find themselves prioritizing other things until it is too late and they have lost the skill entirely.
These people should know that it will be easier for them to recover the skill than it will be for the people who have never been exposed to French before, so their school lessons and their prior success with those school lessons will not have been in vain. If anything, when these people start to look at French grammar and French vocabulary again, they will often find that it will trigger some useful memories. Knowing how to learn French language can sometimes be a matter of building on an established foundation.
Recovering Lost Knowledge
Several groups of people are going to have a comparatively easy time learning French:
- Young children.
- People who speak languages that are partly derived from Latin.
- People who learned French previously.
Adults are going to learn new languages differently than children for many reasons. Children do absorb languages more easily than adults in many ways. They can seemingly learn languages by magic. However, adults have a baseline knowledge of languages to build from, which is not the case for children. Adults can and should access that baseline when they are trying to learn new languages as well, even if they have no prior experience with the language in question.
For instance, French and English are both languages with a Latin base. It is true that French has a much higher Latin content, but English still has a very high Latin content. English speakers should try to keep themselves attuned to some of the similarities between French and English, rather than the differences.
Eventually, students will be able to just think in French and converse in French. However, in the beginning, they are basically going to be translating from one language to another. It is useful to keep in mind the fact that French should be a fairly familiar language to a lot of English speakers. People who speak Spanish and Italian should have an even easier time learning French, since they are speakers of romance languages already.
French Language Resources
However, the people of today have a distinct advantage compared to the people in the past who might try to learn any language, including French. Images of people from decades ago trying to memorize their French phrases from books are always entertaining, especially in view of the better language resources that people have today. People who can learn French online from the endless catalog of options will be able to learn it at an accelerated rate already.