As Alliance Française of Westchester is part of a worldwide network of French Cultural Centers, our members have access to a very rich digital library called Culturethèque. This digital library is completely free to use for all AFW members.
In the "Read" section of Culturethèque, you will find a wide range of newspapers and magazines, books and comic books. Newspapers, magazines and comic books can easily be read on a tablet, phone or computer, all you need is an internet access and a valid AFW membership.
Reading full novels or non-fiction books is slightly more complicated as you will need to install an app on your device in order to be able to borrow a digital copy of the book, however our team can help you with these steps. You will also find further explanations here and here.
Tutorial explaining how to download and read books on Culturethèque
Please note that Culturethèque is only available while you are in the US, so if you want to read something while on vacation in a foreign country, you need to download these books before you leave the US territory.
One of the best sections on Culturethèque is the one specifically designed for French learners. In this section, you will find a wide range of books organized based on their difficulty level, A1 or A2 (beginners, advanced beginners), B1 or B2 (intermediate level, advanced level). You will find books for children, teenagers and adults, and you will even find some bilingual books. The vast majority of these books are great for French learners because you can listen to the audio book while you're reading the book, and you can even adjust the speed of the audio book.
Tutorial explaining how to change the reading speed in audio books.
Some books even come with exercises to help you make sure you understand the story well:
If you are currently trying to broaden your range of French vocabulary, or if you would like to improve your reading and listening skills, reading these books while listening to audio tracks is a great way to boost your French language skills at your own pace. If you're currently enrolled in our of our classes, your teacher will also be able to give you some specific recommendations. You can also always contact us for help or for suggestions.
Another great section on Culturethèque is the one designed for children who are currently learning how to read in French. Those books are organized based on children's age and interests, and they also come with audio files to help them improve their reading skills. Some books also come with interactive exercises or games, so they're a great tool for parents looking for activities to keep their children busy! Just like for books designed for French learners, children books allows you to adjust the reading speed based on your children's needs. Cette section est particulièrement recommandée aux enfants français ou francophones qui ne sont pas scolarisés dans une école française ou bilingue.
For music lovers, one of the best things about Culturethèque is its wide selection of songs and music from all over the world. On
Culturethèque, you will find French songs, but also songs in many other languages. If you want to learn more about French speaking
countries in general, this section will also give you a chance to discover Francophone artists from various countries. To find out
more, you can browse this section.
If you need specific recommendations, you can ask our team, ask our teachers, or simply check recommendations provided in our newsletters and virtual discussion groups.
If you check the "Watch" section on Culturethèque, you will find a wide variety of videos:
If you need specific recommendations, don't hesitate to contact our team.