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Learning French Filler Words

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Humans don’t speak like we write. If we did, we might sound kind of like robots. Instead, we add, like, a bunch of words, you know, to fill in between thoughts.

It’s not like we start sentences knowing exactly how they’re going to end, and that’s just what makes speaking French for a beginner so intimidating. It’s impossible to join in a conversation when you’re stuck in your own head, planning out your sentence structure.

That’s where filler words come in. Each language has its own set of words that people use to take a break from their sentence, collect their thoughts, and figure out what they’re going to say next. In English it’s “you know,” or “like” or “well.” In French, there are words like “en fait” or “bref,” or “bon” to help you take a break and finish your sentence strong. Not only that, but knowing French filler words will make you sound 100% more like an actual French speaker, instead of a French learner.

Travel vloggers Damon and Jo, who know a bit about learning languages, made a video listing all of their favorite filler words, explaining how they’re used and why you should try to incorporate them into your vocabulary!

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