I’m not going to lie, I spend way too much time on Instagram. The first thing I do when I wake up in the morning is go for my phone. And while I’m trying to help end my Instagram addiction, I also try to make the most of it by following some Instagram accounts that are in French. Learning new vocabulary, and learning more about French culture, helps me feel a little better about spending all those hours scrolling through my feed.
The best thing about following accounts who speak a language you want to learn is that you get a free immersion language course every time they post. There is scientific evidence that immersion-style learning can help you process language more like a native speaker. So, don’t get discouraged if you don’t understand everything the accounts are posting about at first.
If you’re not ready to give up your Instagram addiction just yet, but you want to make your time a little more constructive by learning a new language at the same time, then keep reading. In this post I’m going to share some of the French-language accounts I follow and share how I found them, so that you can try to find new accounts to follow in whatever language you’re trying to learn.
What Foreign-Language Accounts I Follow
The three main accounts I follow are design accounts, shopping, and health/beauty accounts. I like to follow design accounts (both art and interior design) because they’re just nice to see on my feed. I also really like shopping small businesses, low-waste and green, so I follow a few accounts where I can learn about new products. I also try to take care of my mind/body whenever possible, so I follow a few accounts that revolve around health/beauty.
Here are a few examples:
Learning new vocabulary, and learning more about French culture, helps me feel a little better about spending all those hours scrolling through my feed.
What Foreign-Language Accounts You Should Follow
If you want to start following foreign-language accounts, but you don’t know what type of accounts you want to follow, you should start by looking at some accounts you follow already. Do you like staying updated with news accounts? Do you like cooking and follow a bunch of food accounts? Do you like memes? All of the accounts you love to follow in English have foreign-language equivalents that you can follow so that you can learn a new language all through the lens of something you already love.
3 Steps to Finding Accounts to Follow in a Foreign Language
Finding the first account you like can be a little tricky, but the good thing is that once you find one account you like it’s easier to find to find others.
- The first step is to do a little translation. For example, I like eating healthy. So, if I want to find French accounts who post about healthy eating I might look up the translation of “to eat” (manger) and “healthy” (sain). If you like cooking, you could translate words like “recipe,” “to cook,” and “at home.” If you like funny memes, you could translate words like “funny,” “humour, and “joke.” If you like shopping green, you could translate words like “product,” “natural,” and “organic.”
- Next, you want to use those terms to look for relevant hashtags. If I type in “manger” to the search bar in Instagram and look under the “Tags” tab, there are hashtags like #mangersain (#eathealthy), #mangermieux (#eatbetter), and #mangersainement (#eathealthily). From here I would be able to click on these hashtags and look through all of the accounts that have tagged their pictures with them. The nice thing is that once you type in one word a bunch of hashtags with those words come up so it’s really easy to find other ideas!
- After you’ve chosen your hashtag you can look through the pictures and click on the ones you like. This is the fun part because you get to look through a bunch of profiles. After you’ve found one account you like it’s a lot easier to find others because you can look through the list of people they follow or see who they tag in their posts. Once I follow someone for a while I’ll usually find at least one other account I like by just seeing who comments on their posts and who they tag in their posts.
You can also use this method to search for accounts on other forms of social media like Twitter, YouTube, and TikTok—just translate the search terms you usually use into the language of your choice. I hope you find some quality accounts to follow and have fun learning some new vocabulary while you’re at it!