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Behind the Wheel Express - French 1

Audiobook for leaning beginning French

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Good for the price, but don't expect to learn simply by listening

  • Oct 3, 2010
  • by
I received Behind the Wheel Express French, Level 1 to enjoy and to review. Here’s my take on this fast lane to learning French by Macmillan Audio:

The three-CD immersion language pack includes a bonus 78-page companion book with pronunciation tips, verb conjugation, use of tenses, vocabulary and more.  Om page 71 there is an audio transcript so you can read along with the audio and you are shown how to construct first sentences with ease–as stated with your very first lesson.

The program in general offers both an American instructor and a French speaker who demonstrates authentic use and pronunciation. English translations are provided immediately, allowing the student to use his or her first language as a learning tool. A periodic retrieval memory is utilized as well as a focus on a high-frequency practical vocabulary which allows the student to begin creating original sentences right away.

The first CD explains noun gender which I found confusing due to my high school German–some nouns that are feminine in German (das Buch) are masculine in French (le livre)!

For the first-time French learner, the CDs offer a good chance to follow pronunciation, but I don’t feel the “behind the wheel” experience is as useful as being able to follow along with the book since a knowledge of pronunciation and spelling are equally important. I followed each CD while driving but my efforts to inculcate new words or phrases into a speaking vocabulary were unsuccessful.

Rosetta Stone it is not, but I would say that for the modest cost of the set and with more than a cursory listening (suggest you listen to the CDs, read the book, then follow the audio transcript along with the audio and review once more the brief lessons), you will pick up common phrases and be on your way to a start in comprehending basic traveler’s French.

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October 04, 2010
I studied French all through school and was pretty good - until of course I stopped reading and speaking it. I need to refresh what I know and would love to learn more, but I am a very visual learner. I don't think language is meant to be learned just through audio, but Rosetta Stone sure is expensive! Thanks for reviewing this CD, I may recommend it to people traveling to France that don't know the language. :)
More Behind the Wheel Express - Fre... reviews
review by . September 30, 2010
posted in Awesomeness
I have tried many language products and this one is well worth the $15.99 that Amazon charges. It is one of the better audio CDs that provide the listener with explanations of words and then has a French woman say the words and phrases with very clear French diction and allows the listener to repeat what she says several times. Thereby using repetition to remember and pronounce in a more correct way. It comes with three CDs that are each about an hour. They are audio so they can easily be listened …
About the reviewer
Suzanne Barrett ()
Ranked #117
A former facility engineer and Kensington author, Suzanne believes in sharing stories of romance and adventure spiced with a bit of mystery and intrigue. Suzanne and her husband live in the Santa Cruz … more
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Behind the Wheel Express – French 1 covers beginning to intermediate level French, providing a flexible, solid, and universal foundation in speaking, understanding, and creatively expressing yourself in French. The program features an English speaking instructor to guide you through the lessons and native speakers to aid with your pronunciation. Includes a companion book to reinforce and enhance the audio experience.
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