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kru

 Project Description: intensive french

Mission:

The course responds to the needs of a group of non-academic learners based in the south of France. The learners are adult professionals of various nationalities who moved to France from abroad for work or for family reasons. These clients are not interested in achieving any “official” level of French, such as the CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages). They need to know French for everyday survival and to improve their quality of life in their adopted country.

Challenge:

Attitude: These learners have strong feelings of inadequacy. They associate speaking French with rejection, fear, and anxiety. Mental blocks prevent them from engaging fully in conversation with native speakers. 

Motivation: They need heavy amounts of speaking and listening practice and do not desire in-depth grammar, reading, or writing. They do not generally function well in a “traditional” classroom setup, whether due to mental blocks around performance, a focus on grammar, a focus on level, a focus on reading and writing, homework load, or scheduling.

Time: These learners do not have a lot of time to dedicate to learning French long-term, and are not interested in an academic approach. They have standard 9-5 work schedules and family obligations.

Solution:

Classes are given exclusively online outside of work hours, in an intensive short-term format, without homework assignments.

Learning objectives and outcomes are defined in terms of instances of “survival” or “success” in everyday life, ie. Ordering correctly at a restaurant, fixing a problem on the phone, or having an exchange with a native speaker without that speaker switching to English.

Grammar is presented on a “need to know” basis, and the vast majority of class sessions is dedicated to speaking and listening practice.

Communicative and active models ensure a maximum of engagement. The overall focus is on the successful communication of ideas (whether the learner said what he intended to say, and whether the listener interpreted it as such), rather than linguistic precision.

An increase in confidence and the development of positive feelings around the French language and culture are additional learning outcomes for the course, independent of improvement in level.

Results

As KRU French is a small business that does not provide official assessments such as the CEFR, results are perhaps best measured in business terms. Anecdotal indicators of success come from student testimonials (to be added soon).

  • Strong referral and word-of-mouth presence: 70% of clients are referred by others
  • Switched from 100% outbound (at outset) to 100% inbound marketing within 7 months, for private clients (our capacity to welcome these clients is filled exclusively from unsolicited incoming requests)
  • 100% customer satisfaction rate
  • Steady sales growth at a rate of 9% per month

Sample Visual Aids: Intermediate Beginner French

These prompts are examples from presentations and activities outlined in the lesson plan.

NB: The content is excerpted from Chez Nous: Branché sur le monde francophone, 4th edition, by Scullen, Pons, and Valdman.

Sample Course Plan

The course plan for the Intermediate Beginner Course (CEFR level A.1), as it is presented to learners. 
Topics are briefly listed. Learning objectives are behavior-based, phrased in everyday terms familiar to non-academics.