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Mon coach Bescherelle
Mon coach Bescherelle is a learning app that is aimed at improving French grammar and spelling. It seeks to address a problem whereby native speakers are known to make many mistakes in the written language, which should give those of us learning French as a second language some comfort.

Available on iOS and Android it is a joint venture between the well-respected company Bescherelle and the American start-up Knewton, which specialises in adaptive learning (artificial intelligence) that analyses your results and competence, and then tailors subsequent exercises accordingly.

I have downloaded the app on my iPhone and find it a bit similar to Memrise, but pitched at a higher level, especially if you start at the second level as I did. I took the initial test, at which I didn't do too well, although in many cases each question included multiple decisions and you fail if only one of these is incorrect.

I then tried the first of the free modules, Choisir la bonne termination, which tests you on word endings, many being based on selecting the correct ending from é, er or ez, all of which are of course phonetically similar. This is obviously aimed at French speakers who don't need to know the spelling when speaking but may struggle when having to write things down. Some of the questions are based on audio clips, which can be really challenging as I think they assume a native French listener.

I must admit that I found the approach quite appealing. It's designed for a phone app and it works very well as such. They advertise it as innovative and playful, and it certainly is more addictive than an exercise book covering the same ground would be.

The downside, after you've completed the three free modules there is a monthly subscription to release the other modules, which at £8.99 a month is quite expensive. If you sign up for 12 months at £52.99 this reduces the monthly charge to £4.42, but that's a fairly big commitment. There are also three and six month options. I'm sitting on the fence until I've completed the free modules.
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