If you’re looking for a way to speed up your comprehension of written French, reading from a French newspaper is one of the most effective (and cheapest) ways to do so. For the past six months, Transparent Language Blog has compiled an extensive list of newspapers from across the country, and you can add them to your RSS feed for a daily dose of French.
In addition to the French blog, Transparent language has bloggers- usually native speakers- who post on a regular basis about the language and the countries culture associated with each language. There’s an extensive list of languages that are covered- some as exotic as Icelandic.
Newspapers are great for improving your vocabulary and overall understanding of any language. Many articles are written in the present or past tense, which are common tenses for students. The reading level is about middle to high school, so you don’t have to worry if you’re getting in over your head by reading them. Finally, you can learn some idiomatic expressions and plays on words by reading a newspaper.
My ancestors are from Grenoble and La Rochelle, so I tend to follow the newspapers from those cities. I made the mistake of putting the feed for the Ille de Re (the island off the shore of La Rochelle where my ancestors lived in the 1600s) into my main Twitter feed. Now I have to deal with reading traffic reports from across the globe, which makes me have to stop and think about what I’m reading.