I’m moving to France and Joelle has definitely helped me prepare! Every time I attend Joelle’s class I learn something completely surprising and invaluable. The course is true to its name in that it and its book help with every day, situational and conversational needs, but Joelle as an instructor takes the class to another level. She helps us understand the cultural setting of the language (whether that’s driving, sending an email, or getting to know future neighbors!), how to sound like a more natural French speaker, and French phrases that are more commonly used now. Joelle goes above and beyond to answer students’ questions both in and out of class. She also corrects us in a kind, encouraging manner. And I really appreciate how she encourages organic conversation in French between students at the beginning of each class. I look forward to continuing my French language studies with Joelle even when I’m in France.

Shelley M.

I chose the Alliance Française de Santa Rosa because of the flexibility and variety of classes. I have also greatly enjoyed my teachers there and the cultural opportunities such as the cheese workshop and the botanical workshop. 

Courtney W.

I just wanted to let you know I am enjoying my Pronunciation lessons with Kate. She is fun to talk with, speaks great French and translates very well.  My daughter is also enjoying her class preparing for the DELF. She enjoys working with Joelle and she also very much enjoyed her last class with you (Lisa). Thanks for working to help us get better at French. 

Thao W.

Studying French literature is not easy, but it has opened up a new world to me. If you want to go beyond the basics of French language instruction, Littérature is the course for you! For each lesson, Joelle gives a very modest assignment: a French author or poet, his background, and several paragraphs from one or two major works. When the lesson starts, Joelle leads discussion, and encourages your participation. The joy you experience more than compensates for effort you put into it. You won’t regret it… parole d’honneur !  

Mike Sanders, AFSR Board Member

I joined Alliance Francaise a year ago, just before the pandemic hit, to further my joy of understanding and speaking French. I’ve enjoyed Julia’s class immensely, and have continued to learn through our Zoom class connection, which has worked just fine. Our small class, through Zoom, has been great…I think I’ve come to know my classmates better in this environment, and we support each other in our homework assignments and our class activities. I’m thankful that Alliance Francaise has continued to create the class structure for learning to continue as we weather this pandemic. Huge kudos to Julia for designing our weekly class structure and assignments, and continuing to facilitate our learning process!! 

Diane P.

I am a winemaker and a few years back I lived in France to study viticulture. Now firmly rooted in California, I wanted to keep my French language skills in good shape, but was not encountering many folks locally with whom to speak in French. That all changed when I joined the Alliance Française and enrolled in the courses. Not only have I tapped into a thriving Francophone and Francophile community in Sonoma County, but I have enjoyed keeping my French on the ascent. 

Eva D.

My wonderful teachers at the Alliance (Kate and Julia) have helped me tremendously in getting over being bloquée (inhibited) in speaking French. In addition, the supportiveness of fellow students is just wonderful, and very often elevates the quality of the courses. The Alliance Française de Santa Rosa is for people who wish to learn and practice their French in a supportive environment. 

Gigi S.

Pour moi, l’AFSR est plus que ce que j’avais demandé. Je voulais améliorer mon français du lycée. L’AFSR m’a certainement donné cela. L’Alliance a ravivé mon amour de la langue française. Mais ce n’est pas tout.

L’Alliance était une amie pour moi quand j’avais vraiment besoin d’une amie. En restant à la maison à cause du coronavirus et pendant des temps troublants aux États-Unis, mes cours avec L’Alliance étaient une source généreuse d’amitié et de joie – mes professeurs, les autres étudiants, la joie partagée pour apprendre, et la langue française elle-même. Vive l’Alliance !

Ken D.

I am currently taking my third series on Literature with Joelle. I would consider myself an advanced level student (not fluent). This very enjoyable course meets my needs in a number of ways: through Joelle’s excellent and good-humored guidance, we are expanding our speaking, reading, and listening skills.

The assignments between classes include reading short passages of important authors, and sometimes looking at biographical material (print and video). Using literature as our starting point, I have learned a lot about French cultural trends and history. Thanks to Joelle, I have also learned some new ways to think about French literary texts. Most of all, for me at least, a text gives us an interesting starting point for open discussion. I really appreciate how much my language skill can stretch when I strongly want to understand and convey ideas about a nuanced topic!

Highly Recommended

Barbara B.

Après presque huit mois, je parle couramment le français! Non, c’est une blague! Je suis be-bête, (I am being silly).
même si je suis mignonne comme mon chiot, à qui je donne beaucoup de friandises.
Voici de nombreux exemples des mots amusants que j’avais appris à L’Alliance française de Santa Rosa dans nos discussions intéressantes.
Nous avons aussi parlé dans la classe des événements dramatiques d’aujourd’hui avec le vocabulaire correct. C’est très utile! Et aussi, nous parlons des choses culturelles et historiques françaises.
Au début du cours avec Joelle, je trouvais qu’elle parlait trop vite. Je pense qu’elle parle beaucoup plus lentement maintenant, parce que je peux comprendre la plupart du temps! (Ou peut-être parce que je suis devenue à l’aise en Français?!)

Martha G.

After returning from a brief trip to Paris I found myself excited to discover more about the language and culture of France. I began with self paced lessons with Rosetta Stone. While this quickly broadened my limited vocabulary, I found that it lacked the vibrancy that I found in spoken Parisian French and, frankly, I needed more structure to support my learning. This is when I discovered L’Alliance Francaise de Santa Rosa. One look at the website prompted me to initiate my membership and begin taking classes. As my ability to speak and understand French increased, L’Alliance had numerous offerings available to explore the culture, history, literature and food of France. Some of these classes remain out of my level of proficiency, but after eight months of study I can see how much closer I am to being able to join others in enjoying these aspects of French culture. Because class sizes are small, instructors are able to individualize lessons to create an optimal learning environment for each student. Bottom line, if you are wondering if AFSR is for you, I say ‘allez-y!’

Trudy V.

J’ai étudié le français à l’université. Mais, c’était il y a de nombreuses années. J’étais un étudiant de première année et probablement pas encore un très bon étudiant. J’ai toujours voulu prendre un autre cours de français et faire mieux. Aussi nous voudrions aller en France avec ma femme, quand la pandémie sera passée. J’espère avoir la confiance de parler français tout le temps pendant ce voyage. Ce cours de Travelers m’aide à gagner cette confiance en atteignant cet objectif. Je prends ce cours depuis mars. Il y a eu beaucoup des étudiants différents depuis le début du cours. Cependant, il y a un  professeur: Joelle Pluchon. Elle est un très bon professeur. J’ai appris beaucoup grâce à elle. Depuis septembre, j’ai commencé à penser en français. Apprendre plus de mots, de phrases et de temps de verbes a aidé. Joelle a suggéré de nombreuses choses supplémentaires pour aider à apprendre le français. Alors, j’écoute des chanteurs français, je regarde des films français et j’achète des magazines français quand je peux les trouver dans les librairies. Alors que j’apprends beaucoup, j’ai encore beaucoup à apprendre. J’ai encore du mal à entendre rapidement le français avec les gens qui parlent couramment français. Cependant, ma confiance grandit. Récemment, j’ai pu faire les courses au magasin français sans parler anglais tout le temps que j’étais dans le magasin. C’était une expérience gratifiante! J’apprends le français!

Steve “Etienne” A.