Many students fear the French dictation which is an important examination at high school or even at University. However, this kind of test should be considered as a very useful exercice when learning a foreign langage. This means that if a French student decides to practice regularly the dictation he will surely have great benefits:
in the discrimination of sounds: some French sounds are difficult to distinguish. Nasal vowels certainly occupy a remarkable place. Then, it is often difficult to distinguish the different types of [e]. (eg le / les, me / mes etc). Thus, the dictation helps us in phonetic discrimination .
in grammar: dictation obliges us to reflect on the mechanisms of language, and in particular on the verb agreement, names, adjectives since often in French some letters are to be written but not pronounced.
in oral comprehension: to be able to do a dictation we need to know all the words and before writing, the mechanism of the oral comprehension starts . So, dictation after dictation we will be more and more capablein understanding what we are listening to. At the same time, we will improve our written skills.
Therefore, all those who fear and reject the dictate should consider it a valid learning tool that leads to reflection and attention to the language. In fact, it helps us in oral comprehension and allows us to practice grammar, conjugations, and spelling.