Many students struggle with the same problem: how to do and where to begin with a language subject revision. Reviewing science subjects are more straight forward -- memorising laws and equations, finishing up the exercises and drills in your book and workbook, making your own key notes then revise them … How about a language subject? The ideal way is to find a tutor who can lead your revision journey, correcting your mistakes etc. However, it doesn’t necessarily mean that there is nothing that you can do. The following is one of the tips on how to do a great revision on a certain aspect.
1. Choose an exam topic like healthy lifestyle, natural environment or tourism
2. Base on the wordings you learnt in school and books from that topic, make a vocabulary list with all the easy words or words that strike your impression strongly
3. Resight the vocabulary list. Do so by creating an English version and a French version of the list with identical words. Then hide or cover the English list to see if you can remember all the words from the French version, and vice versa
4. Use the vocabulary to form sentences and paragraphs. It's pointless memorising vocabulary if you can’t put them in practice. Follow this: use as many words that are relevant to the chosen topic as you can to produce a short article. Check the list in step 3 only for a few words that you don't know the translation. Do not make your piece too complicated but remember to utilize a variety of verbs, adjectives (e.g. beautiful, new, etc.), conjunctions (e.g. furthermore, next, additionally, etc.) and qualifiers (e.g. a little, quite, incredibly, etc.) Proof-read your work or find a tutor to have a check and spot out your mistakes.
5. To reinforce what you learn, repeat step 4 but rephrase or paraphrase your writing without looking at the list of vocabulary that you made. Try not to make mistakes and try not to cheat. Review the list again if you can't write a decent piece but if you can write long enough, it means that you are ready!
Following the five points will enable you to have a enhanced vocabulary bank and more importantly how to master them in writing. Resight the paragraphs and try to read them our loud, that would better your speaking too.
For example " I wake up at 6 in the morning and I take a shower before I have breakfast. I usually go for a jog of 30 minutes, take a second shower then travel to school on foot. My lunchtime is at 12pm and I have a lunchbox made by my mother the day before."
So when you get an oral question like "how is your daily routine?" or like "what do you do in the morning?" or even like "how do you spend your spare time?" and "can you describe your school life?" You should be able to answer quickly and nicely instead of something like "I go to school by bus."
Good luck with your studying!
French Tutors Hong Kong team in collaboration with the French Teachers Association of HK.