Alice Ayel has many fine French videos here at LingQ, geared to Beginner 2 content, in which she presents life in France and Europe. I learned to make clafoutis, a French baked custard fruit dessert!
However, Ayel really shines at her own website:
She offers a more structured learning course with 120 lessons building from Beginner to Intermediate. Essentially she performs a story in French using a small white board to draw little pictures with words as necessary. She also adds her own facial expressions and sound effects.
The stories are often silly – my favorites are about two cats, Aspirine and Biscuit, with colored fur – but humor is clearly the madness of Ayel’s method to relax the student and let the learning in.
I can’t help but remember when I was a schoolboy and the Nice Lady at the front of the room was telling us a Nice Story.
As a learner I can see how she has structured the course so good vocabulary and grammar sneak in appropriate to the level.
I’ve heard about story learning and tried some, but Alice Ayel is a master. I wish I had started with her several months ago.
Note: Her LingQ videos are free with LingQ, but I am paying $25 for three months for these lessons.
I love her so much!
I felt like the Mini Stories were over my head as a beginner in French but since I found Alice’s “French the Natural Way” stories on Lingq I’ve made so much progress.
I go through each story in sentence mode and then listen to them in random order while walking.
I’m getting close to finishing the 77 lessons in the course offered on Lingq so I’ve signed up for the course on her site.
For me the lessons are perfect!
I too had trouble with the Mini-Stories, maybe because I had already been studying French for several months.
The repetition in the Mini-Stories made the experience boring and I would start daydreaming. After a while the stories sounded like gibberish.
However, I can imagine if one were starting at zero, especially in a language with a different script or distant from one’s home language, the Mini-Stories might be perfect.
Just to clarify:
Alice Ayel has quite a few lessons on Lingq. There are several series… along with the 77 lesson “Learn French the Natural Way” series, there is a series called “Les Choses de la Vie”, one called “Au Portugal” and several others.
They are all marked Beginner 2 but the “Learn French the Natural Way” series is way, way, way easier. Much more of a beginner set of lessons.
If the Mini-Stories seem repetitious to you then these stories might drive you mad because she repeats the same thing over and over. It was exactly what I personally needed!
A couple years ago she was one of the beginning French comprehensible input creators I used.
She is AWESOME.
If the Mini-Stories seem repetitious to you then these stories might drive you mad because she repeats the same thing over and over.
That’s not my experience. I’m starting at the Ayel’s “Baby Stage” for “Learn French the Natural Way” on her website.
It’s easy for me since I’ve been at this for months (Intermediate 2 on LingQ, whatever that means), but while she repeats, she is telling a story as an entertaining person tells a story.
The Mini-Stories are bland canned dialogs, with each person repeating what the other person said with minor variations. Canned dialogs do not work for me.
Anyway. I started doing Ayel’s course because my listening comprehension is poor. She speaks distinctly and in the videos I can see her mouth and facial expressions, which I find helpful. Plus, of course, I find her enjoyable. I’ve already been able to speed her up to 1.5x.
BTW I misspoke earlier. The videos for Ayel’s lessons are not on LingQ – just the imported text and audio.