After being asked many times to teach people how to speak her native language, Lise (Lees) created ‘Let’s Speak French’. It is a Brisbane, Australian based language school with digital capacity to teach online.
Originally from Montreal, Canada, (The French part of Montreal, Quebec province of Canada.), Lise now calls Brisbane, Australia her home. What began as a love of sharing her passion for the language in local cafe settings has now turned into a business venture.
We had a chat to Lise about her background, language and her business.
I suppose that you might get asked this, but is the French that you speak, different to the way they speak in France?
Yes, I get asked that. Yes it is. The accent is different, but often I tell the student, you will be learning English from an English speaking country such as England, America, or New Zealand, or Australia. It’s similar too. There might be some local expressions which are typical of Quebec in Canada. But, I say generally I can communicate perfectly if I go to France or with French people. It’s the same thing, just that we have a different accent.
So how did your business, ‘Let’s Speak French’, begin?
‘Let’s Speak French’ started from all of my teaching in the past. The business ‘Let’s Speak French’ began at the beginning of this year. However, In the last 8 years I was mainly working in Early Childhood in Montessori City. I was asked again to begin tutoring in French, last year and I enjoyed that. There were a lot of requests for me to teach, so I thought, well maybe I can do, go back to teaching French.
I just started this as a sideline project at the beginning of the year. It was going well so I decided to advertise online. I was just asking the people on facebook if there’s anybody interested in learning French, and there were so many replies that I just thought, ‘oh well maybe there is people interested in learning French. So, then I started my business of ‘Let’s Speak French’. Now, it’s really busy, I have wonderful students from all walks of life – I teach adults, I teach children, and I teach high school students.
Sometimes lessons are arranged in cafe’s. It’s casual like a drop-in club. Quite a few of the ladies who attend too, are either retired or semi-retired during today, and they were saying, ‘oh this is good because I need to go away. But when I come back I can join again’.
At the moment I’ve got a few students going to France so we say, ‘ok, let’s work on a theme of travelling’, and we focus on that. But after they come back home to Australia they return to the lessons – so it’s good to see that they’re enjoying the lessons.
So, what inspires you, and motivates you to continue with tutoring French?
Well, a lot of it is to do with the fact that the student really enjoys what they are doing and learning, so that’s what keeps me going.
For more information about Let’s Speak French (Brisbane):