In preparation for my semester abroad, I’m taking a French class over the summer.
Due to the fact that I will only be here for a semester, therefore cannot take any “year-long” classes, and must take a few online courses to make up for credits that I won’t be getting in France.
Normally, I would be really excited about learning French; I haven’t felt like I’ve learned much in my previous French classes, which is a large part of why I want to go to France and actually learn the language. Despite this, I felt like French IV would be a relatively simple course– I’m good at French.
I was, of course, proved wrong.
There are only eight people, including myself, in this online class. I don’t know any of them; I’ve had one conversation with one of them over Wimba Pronto (which we were required to install). The workload is ridiculous!
Each week, we complete an entire Unit. A Unit has three Sections; each Section has four to seven subcategories; each subcategory has three to six activities or notes.
There’s dictées, which are listening activities (dictations), which we must write out en français and submit for a grade. In my previous French class, listening activities were limited to tests– when Madame would read a script of a conversation to us and we would choose a multiple-choice answer regarding the content. We’ve never had to actually listen for words and content, picking apart the phrases and writing them correctly.
Then there’s writing activities, which are really intimidating. Usually these are where we must write anywhere from six to twenty sentences about a certain topic. It’s really time-consuming. I tend to write (by hand, of course) en anglais and then I have to translate it to le français, before typing it all up and checking my spelling, grammar, and then submitting it.
Worst of all, though, are the tests and quizzes. They’re not particularly long, but they are quite time-consuming. For quizzes, there are generally ten to fifteen questions, out of which there are five to eight essay or short-answer questions. Tests are twenty to thirty questions, with at least eight essay/short-answer. They take me hours to complete; not that my computer helps any, because every time I submit a test or quiz, the website freaks out and then I have to repeat the process.
I’m behind in both of my online classes (French IV and Advanced Functions and Modeling [AFM]). I was ahead for a short while in AFM, but then stopped, as I tried to catch up on French. There is so much to do for French, and not nearly enough time (or patience) to complete it all, and I become sidetracked working on that, rather than the relatively simple Math.
I’m going to allez à l’école en ligne (go to online school) now, and hopefully get ahead! WHOO!