Best way back, after a long layoff?

Bonjour à tous!

I took a long, long break from Chatterbug during covid-19…between lockdowns, work, and lack of travel, I just couldn’t muster the energy to learn a language, even one I really enjoy. (Ennui? Malaise? So many good French terms to describe my feelings :grin:)

I left off at level 1.6, and didn’t look at/listen to/study any French for a year. Last week I started up again, deciding to put an hour per day into learning the language. Re-entry has been hard – I’ve lost a lot of grammar and conjugations in particular, and I find the writing exercises intimidating (and honestly I’ve been skipping them!).

I’m wondering if anyone else is, or has been, in this situation, and if there is any advice for catching up and getting back into the swing of things.

Hope you all are doing well around the world - what a trying year this has been for all of us.


I had french in school for 9 Years and was soooo good at it…unfortunately it has been 13 Years since ive used the language and i cant find the willpower to dive back into refreshing it…
Probably because i am scared of finding out how much ive really lost of it and the resulting frustration…


Bonjour à tous les deux !
First, I suggest that you take the “problem” in reverse and try to see what is left of your French (rather than what you have lost!). :muscle: :muscle: :hugs:
The same thing happened to me with Spanish and now I’m struggling with conjugation but I try to see what vocabulary words or grammar notions come back automatically and I sometimes have good surprises!

Indeed, getting back to writing can be very frustrating @mgm, I think you’re right to skip the writing exercises for now, you’ll be able to come back to them later!!
I think the best thing for you might be to take a lesson with a tutor you knew well, it’s always nice (for the tutor and the student!) to get an update after a long break! :star_struck: The first few minutes might be a bit difficult but I’m sure that by the end of the lesson you’ll feel comfortable et heureux de voir que tu comprends presque tout ce qu’on te dit ! :slight_smile:

Please keep us posted on your progress!!


Bonjour :blush:

I completely understand you @mgm after 3 years learning German I decided to begin once again with French. It’s not easy, but I think one needs to go little by little and not to think about how much of the language it’s gone, but how much one can recover. The knowledge it’s somewhere in our brain we just need to use it again :hugs:. My advice would be to start an easy book or a podcast to get involve again and to do something different in your learning path.

Je te souhaite le meilleur :dizzy:.


With 9 years of study and practice behind you, I’m sure you’ll pick it up again with no problem!


Thank you @Amandine for the suggestions and encouragement! (Not to mention your suggestion that I focus on the positive!) I really appreciate it. The suggestion to go back to a tutor I worked well with is a good one…I’ll get up the courage soon. :grin:


Merci @27sp.sandra! Great advice on the podcast (don’t think I’m quite ready for a book) - I will give that a shot, and as you said, take it little by little.