French course in Brighton: staff review

Course Coordinator at Cactus Amy King reports back on her 10-week French evening course in Brighton…

Having studied a bit of French at school and then taken lessons alongside my degree course at University, I was eager to continue learning and consolidate my knowledge so as not to let it slip completely from memory. I found a 10-week level 3 French course to be exactly what I needed to help me to revise and refresh my memory.

The teacher, Helene, was very dynamic and had a contagious passion for teaching that couldn’t help but muster enthusiasm from the students, even on evenings when we may be feeling a little weary after a long day.  She encouraged us all to speak a lot during class (jokingly scolding us if she heard too much English!) and gave us a lot of help to perfect our pronunciation.  One of Helene’s strengths as a teacher was that she provided an assortment of learning materials and ensured that there was a lot of variation in what we learnt in class.  Lessons would combine a mixture of speaking, reading and listening exercises, with written work mostly saved for homework.  Helene supplemented the exercises that we worked from in the course book with worksheets that she had created herself and articles that she had found. This, I think, showed her dedication to the class, as when she was reading a French article about Brighton, one of her first thoughts was of her students and copied this article for us all to read.

I was very lucky in that I was in a group with only a small number of students, which made me feel a lot more confident speaking aloud in class.  Having been rather self-conscious at school putting questions forward to the teacher and speaking in front of my peers, I felt very comfortable in this group as all students in the class got along very well.

One of the best parts of the course for me personally was that I was really able to see my development and progression. When recently reading an email that was written in French, I was really pleased to learn that I was able to translate and understand the majority of it.This has really encouraged me to keep learning and to move on to level 4.

Cactus offers a range of evening and part-time language courses all around the UK. Please visit the Language Courses UK website for full listings of languages, locations and to test your level.