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Popular French Articles from our Blog

C'est la F�te Nationale: French Vocabulary for Bastille Day

C'est la F�te Nationale: French Vocabulary for Bastille Day

Perhaps you've heard of Bastille Day, the French national holiday in July. Tutor Annie A. shares history and vocabulary to help you observe this holiday like the French do... Are you planning on celebrating Bastille Day this year? If so, you'll need to learn some French vocabulary related to the holiday!  In this blog post, we'll list the French vocabulary words and phrases that will help you get in the spirit of la fête nationale.  Vive la France! What Do the French Say on Ba
By Megan L.
Quiz Yourself: Are You An Expert In Irregular French Verbs?

Quiz Yourself: Are You An Expert In Irregular French Verbs?

The French language is notorious for its many irregularities and exceptions to rules, especially when it comes to these irregular verbs. You've been studying them, but how well do you really know these irregular French verbs in the present tense? Test your knowledge and find out which verbs could use some more practice. How did you do? Check out our French Verb Guide for more help studying French grammar and show off your score in the comments below! Interested in Private Lesso
By Megan L.
French Grammar Rules: Reading Le Pass� Simple

French Grammar Rules: Reading Le Pass� Simple

There is one French verb tense that you will likely only come across in literature, the passé simple. French tutor Carol Beth L. shows you how to recognize and understand this tense... The passé simple is a unique tense in the French language. Perhaps one or two centuries ago, it was commonly used like the simple past in English. For example: J'allai au magasin. I went to the store. Je couru deux kilometres. I ran two kilometers. The passé simple is similar to the simple
By Megan L.
Ultimate Guide to Studying French Pronunciation Online

Ultimate Guide to Studying French Pronunciation Online

Ask any student their biggest struggle in learning French and you're guaranteed to hear one thing - pronunciation. In order to properly speak French, you must first learn how to pronounce the letters and sounds of the language. This may seem daunting at first, but with a little practice, you'll be able to have conversations in no time!  In this blog post, we'll go over some of the most common French pronunciation tips and some easy resources you can use to help you master French alph
By Megan L.
French Grammar Rules: Your Guide to Verb Tenses

French Grammar Rules: Your Guide to Verb Tenses

French verbs throwing you for a loop? French tutor Carol Beth L. breaks down the differences between the most common verb tenses you'll study in French class... French verbs can be a difficult aspect of learning French for many students – but it doesn't have to be. If you can mentally organize what kinds of verbs are out there and when to use them, learning French grammar will be much easier to do. Here are the most common tenses studied in typical French grammar classes:  
By Suzy S.
French Vocabulary List: Food, Cooking, and Meals

French Vocabulary List: Food, Cooking, and Meals

Feeling hungry for more French vocabulary? French tutor Carol Beth L. shares the words and phrases you'll need to enjoy a fine meal in French... Are you un chef (a cook) on par with Disney's "Ratatouille"? You'd better be if you want to compete with the best of French cuisine! If not, go sample a little cuisine as un gourmand (one who enjoys eating a lot) or un gourmet (one who enjoys fine delicacies) – or perhaps as both! Here are some French vocabulary terms you should know on your
By Suzy S.
Studying French Verbs: Le Futur Ant�rieur

Studying French Verbs: Le Futur Ant�rieur

Understanding more than one language gives you an advantage in a number of situations. Whether you’re traveling to a foreign country and bartering for a souvenir, applying for a job with international relations, or even ordering from a local restaurant, having a second language in your back pocket is a plus. Few languages sound more royal and smooth than French. It’s one of the Romance languages and will no doubt impress whoever is in your company when you switch to French while askin
By Suzy S.
Fall in France: French Vocabulary for Fall

Fall in France: French Vocabulary for Fall

Are you surrounded by dead leaves and pumpkin spice lattes yet? If so, that means it's fall! Here, French teacher Mikayla S. is ready to spice up your fall with some wonderful French vocabulary... The End of Summer La rentrée (the start of the school year, which takes place September 1st each year) in France is a big deal. It signifies the end of summer and the return to work and school. The French are very lucky in that they usually have five weeks of paid vacation. Most French take
By Megan L.
5 French Holidays to Celebrate This Spring and Summer

5 French Holidays to Celebrate This Spring and Summer

When in France, party like the French do! Whether you're preparing to study abroad or you just want to bring a little piece of France into your home, French tutor Carol Beth L.'s guide to French holidays this spring and summer will give you something to celebrate... French holidays share some similarities with American holidays, but they aren't all exactly the same – nor do they occur at the same time. If you're looking for some fun French festivities, here are a few spring and summer holi
By Suzy S.
Build Your French Vocabulary: How to Tell Time in French

Build Your French Vocabulary: How to Tell Time in French

For our last French vocabulary lesson, tutor Carol Beth L. taught us numbers, counting, and basic math. Now, it's time to put that knowledge to work with this lesson on telling time in French... So, are you confident with your numbers in French yet? Telling time is a wonderful way to practice – and is very helpful in everyday life! Let's start with a few basic words and phrases: Heure hour L'heure the time Quelle heure est-il? What time is it? (Say: Kel Ur Il est ______ heures. It is
By Suzy S.
Birds, Bees, and More French Vocabulary You Need for Spring

Birds, Bees, and More French Vocabulary You Need for Spring

C'est le printemps! The sun is finally coming out, and Willy M. is here to share the French vocabulary you need to know for spring! What on earth could be lovelier than Paris in the spring? After a long cold winter, everyone is ready to get out and enjoy the warm weather. Here are ten French vocabulary words that will get your spring off to a good start. Not only will you get ten new vocab words, but I am also going to give you some tips to help you memorize them, and to put them into pract
By Megan L.
Build Your French Vocabulary: Colors and Days of the Week

Build Your French Vocabulary: Colors and Days of the Week

Ready to start learning to speak French? Colors and days of the week are great vocabulary to get you started. Colors and days of the week are some of the easiest words to master when you're first learning French. If you know any other romance languages, like Spanish or Italian, you are going to see that the French words for colors and days of the week are very similar. Colors in French As you may know already, adjectives in French take on the gender of the word that they are describing. I
By Suzy S.
10 Cool Sites to Learn French by Podcast, Video, or Blog

10 Cool Sites to Learn French by Podcast, Video, or Blog

When you're learning French, consistent linguistic exposure at and just above your level is vital. It can help you reinforce your current level, and help you raise your level through context clues and direct introduction to new vocabulary. Podcasts and other online mediums are an excellent way to do this. Below are a few podcasts, YouTube channels, and blogs that can help you improve. While the focus and organization of these types of sites is sometimes a little bit different, they can a
By Megan L.
How Long Does it Take to Learn French? Find Out Here.

How Long Does it Take to Learn French? Find Out Here.

Learning a new language takes patience, and many students start to wonder: “How long does it take to learn French?” Every person learns differently depending on their goals, learning style, and ultimately - their level of self discipline. If you develop a practice schedule and get into the habit of sticking to it, you will be much more productive and efficient. The amount of time it takes to learn French also depends on your methods and goals. To make better progress, use learni
By Jessica Dais
4 Proven Ways to Practice Your French Listening Skills

4 Proven Ways to Practice Your French Listening Skills

As you learn to speak French, you also need to learn how to listen in a new way so you can understand this beautiful language. French tutor Annie A. shares four proven ways to improve your French listening skills... Understanding French can be quite a challenge, even if you can read the written language with comparative ease. To many English speaking students, whole sentences in French sound like one long word. One reason for this confusion is that French pronunciation uses something ca
By Megan L.
French Verbs of Motion: Conjugate �tre Past Tense (+ Practice Questions)

French Verbs of Motion: Conjugate �tre Past Tense (+ Practice Questions)

There's always more to learn about French verbs when you’re working on mastering the language! Tutor Carol Beth shares an important difference you need to know about certain verbs in the passé composé... Perhaps you are beginning to have a handle on some of the primary verbal forms in French – le present, le futur, imparfait, and passé composé for most verbs. If you’re wondering when to use être or avoir in passé composé (past tense), you’re in the right place! When expressi
By Suzy S.
Easy French Books for Adult Language Learners

Easy French Books for Adult Language Learners

Have you been learning French and feel ready to open a French book? Are you an adult French learner looking for a good book and have no idea what would be the best book or best author to begin with? Have you tried to read a French book in the past, but gave up after a couple of pages?  It takes effort and concentration to go through a whole book, so you may as well pick a book that matches your needs, interests, and your level.  Hopefully, these next couple of French books, appropriate f
By Sophie Cazeneuve
52 Fun French Vocabulary Words and Phrases for Summer

52 Fun French Vocabulary Words and Phrases for Summer

Are you ready to learn some French vocabulary words for summer favorites? This post has all the basic French vocabulary you need to beat the heat and communicate well. Summer is coming, and France is a wonderful haven during this time of year (if you can avoid the heat)! The weather is warm, and delicious, fresh food abounds. Children are on vacation from school, and many families take advantage of that to travel. For many, the allure of nature and the great outdoors is difficult to resis
By Suzy S.
French Grammar Rules: Distinguishing Between Imparfait and Pass� Compos�

French Grammar Rules: Distinguishing Between Imparfait and Pass� Compos�

French grammar guru Carol Beth L. is back on the blog with this guide to the passé composé, the imparfait, and when you should use each of them... If you've been studying French grammar long enough, you may know that French has two different forms of the past tense: the passé composé (composed past) and the imparfait (imperfect). It is sometimes difficult for those who have just learned them to distinguish between situations that require the passé composé and situations that wa
By Megan L.
Masculine and Feminine in French: Learning French Nouns | TakeLessons

Masculine and Feminine in French: Learning French Nouns | TakeLessons

What is masculine and feminine in French and how do you tell the difference? French Tutor Willy M. shares some secrets to help you understand and memorize your French grammar... One of the hardest things for many students learning French is understanding how to tell the difference between masculine and feminine French nouns. Gender with regards to words is not something we spend a lot of time thinking about in English. But, it's significant for French vocabulary. Sometimes assigning ge
By Suzy S.
5 Graphic Novels that Will Help You Learn French

5 Graphic Novels that Will Help You Learn French

Learning to speak French can be a daunting task, so why not make it fun? Watching and reading French material is a fantastic way to study the language. In this article, teacher Walker P. introduces you to the wonderful world of French graphic novels... One of the biggest steps we can take in our foreign language learning is reading in French. But let’s be honest, sometimes we’d rather take just half a step - and that’s okay! Instead of staring at a block of text and feeling i
By Megan L.
French Pronunciation Guide: When to Pronounce the Letter T

French Pronunciation Guide: When to Pronounce the Letter T

French pronunciation is full of little tricks that trip beginners up. Tutor Annie A. shares her tips for pronouncing the letter T... Try reading the following French words aloud: tarte, partons, portions, democratie, septieme, mangeaient, amitie, and vert. Do you pronounce all the T's in the same way? Do you pronounce them at all? There are no simple answers, and you will run into many questions about the letter T as you practice proper French pronunciation. There are many different rul
By Megan L.
Introduction to French Grammar: How to Ask a Question

Introduction to French Grammar: How to Ask a Question

In French, like in English, you can often make a statement into a question just by raising your voice at the end. However, that's not the only way the French might pose a question, and as you learn French you're likely to come across many other variations. It's a good idea to get all the other forms of interrogative sentence under your belt as well. 1. Question words. Just like English, French question words can be used to start off a sentence you want to turn into a question. These words take
By Megan L.
15 French Greetings & How to Say Hello in French | TakeLessons

15 French Greetings & How to Say Hello in French | TakeLessons

How much do you know about French greetings and salutations? Learning how to say “good morning” in French, along with other basic French phrases, is usually the first task that aspiring French speakers take on. From there, the possibilities are endless. Just look at these three different options for how to say hello and have a goo day in French: Bonjour Hello (Good Morning) Salut Hi Coucou Hey Âllo Hello Bonsoir Hello (Good Evening) Properly greeti
By Suzy S.
French Jokes to Make You Laugh

French Jokes to Make You Laugh

Humor is one of those concepts that is impossible to translate literally. So much more depends on the jokes told than the mere words used. Nuances and cultural context add invisible layers that can trip non-native speakers up. In the past, when I watched humoristes (comedians) with my family and even when I understood the words, often, the punchline fell flat. I’d sit there wondering how those around me were giggling. As time passed, I began to find myself also amused as opposed to bewildered.
By Catherine Donnelly
10 Essential Study Tips for Learning French

10 Essential Study Tips for Learning French

With the right study plan in place, you can make learning to speak French a lot easier! Take this advice from French tutor Carol Beth L. to create a study plan that is, in a word, magnifique! If you are learning French or know people who are, you may have realized that many people have different ways to approach learning new things. What works well for you may not work well for another person, and vice versa, and each approach may have varying results. When it comes to learning French, here a
By Suzy S.
20+ Best Pinterest Boards for Learning French Online

20+ Best Pinterest Boards for Learning French Online

Do you want to learn French or supplement your current French lessons with some new exercises? Below are 20+ of the best Pinterest boards for learning French online… Chances are you’re familiar with Pinterest; perhaps you even have an account. While great for saving delicious recipes and décor ideas, Pinterest is also useful for learning French online. There are hundreds of Pinterest pages dedicated solely to learning French, many of which are created by French teachers and lang
By Brooke Neuman
Learning French: Interview With Benjamin Houy of French Together

Learning French: Interview With Benjamin Houy of French Together

If you want to learn to speak French like a native speaker, go straight to the source! Benjamin Houy is a native French speaker who has spent the last three years teaching French through his wonderful blog, French Together. French Together is one of my favorite blogs for learning French online, so I was absolutely delighted to get the chance to ask Benjamin a few questions. No matter what level you're at in your study of the French language, Benjamin's insights are sure to be illuminating and
By Megan L.
Essential French Vocabulary: Words for Your Online Life

Essential French Vocabulary: Words for Your Online Life

The French have their own set of words for the online world. Tutor Tyler S. shares how to type French accents, helpful phrases for email, and more! In the most recent decade, technological advances have affected languages all over the globe. Thanks to these advances, it is easy to communicate with others over long distances at the touch of a button. The internet and high-tech mobile devices have given rise to many new, abbreviated word forms. One example is the way the French use t
By Megan L.
5 Fun French Games to Help With Vocabulary and More

5 Fun French Games to Help With Vocabulary and More

Learning French in a class or with a private teacher is important, but as with all languages, practice hours are critical to building fluency. But how do you get motivated to study French every day? According to these sites and apps, the secret is making your lessons into a game! Digital Dialects - Vocabulary and Verb Conjugation Games Aimed mostly at beginning learners, these French games use simple, clear graphics to present practice opportunities for a variety of vocabulary building. Many
By Megan L.
The 7 Best Online Resources for Studying French Grammar

The 7 Best Online Resources for Studying French Grammar

Got grammar questions between French lessons? Tutor Natalie S. shares the best places to find answers to your French grammar questions online... Studying French grammar tends to be a lot of work, because it differs widely from English grammar. Luckily, there are some online resources for French students that make the learning process much easier. Check out the list below of our top favorite online resources for studying French grammar. 1) Language Guide French This is a very basic
By Madalyn Danielson
50 Best French Quotes to Inspire and Delight You | TakeLessons

50 Best French Quotes to Inspire and Delight You | TakeLessons

There are countless inspirational quotes in the French language, including powerful sayings about life, love, and beauty. The deep meaning of these quotes transcends the boundaries of language and nationality, making them valuable for anyone who is interested in life’s wonders. Philosophers, linguists, and art lovers around the globe have long been fascinated by French thinkers. Those looking to study this beautiful language can find inspiration in these quotes, along with some serious wis
By Jessica Dais
Essential French Vocabulary: Greetings, Introductions, and More Social Phrases

Essential French Vocabulary: Greetings, Introductions, and More Social Phrases

Congratulations! You've landed in a French-speaking country, and you're ready to converse with the locals. However, you quickly realize that despite your years of studying French, you don't know the first thing about how to say hello, introduce yourself, or ask for directions. Don't worry – we'll get you up to speed in no time.  Ready to say hello to the French-speaking world? Heading to a French-speaking country soon? Chances are you'd love to get a head start on some useful French gr
By Suzy S.
French Vowel Pronunciation Guide: Best Tips for Mastering French Vowels

French Vowel Pronunciation Guide: Best Tips for Mastering French Vowels

French vowel sounds got you feeling tongue-tied? Tutor Tyler S. shares his best tips to proper French pronunciation... Everyone faces their own personal challenges when learning a foreign language, and I remember that mastering the French vowel system was a great challenge for me. French pronunciation uses approximately 15 vowels, and it uses sounds that English doesn’t include. There are extensive books dedicated to describing these vowels, but you don’t need to be an expert to use Fre
By Megan L.
French Radio Stations for Language Practice

French Radio Stations for Language Practice

Learning a language is one of the best ways to capitalize on some of the downtime that so many of us have in our lives currently. While we cannot live as we used to, technology does leave us with some advantages at our fingertips, regardless of what is open around us. You can, from the comfort and safety of your home, learn a language and take complete control of that learning journey. While in the past it may have been difficult to create an immersive situation outside of a country that
By Catherine Donnelly
When You Translate French to English Watch Out for These 3 Things

When You Translate French to English Watch Out for These 3 Things

French is one of the most beautiful of the romance languages. Spoken as the official language in 29 countries, French is the second most widely spoken mother tongue in the European Union. Learning to speak and understand any language is a process of immersion. To truly understand and be able to translate French to English  means understanding French culture and the idiosyncrasies of the language. One highly effective method for truly understanding a language beyond simply speaking it
By Megan L.
French Grammar Rules: Pass� Compos� for Regular Verbs

French Grammar Rules: Pass� Compos� for Regular Verbs

Ready to try your hand at speaking about past events in French? Tutor Carol Beth L. shares the grammar you'll need to know... So perhaps you know now how to conjugate French verbs in the present tense. You can talk about things that are happening now. But what about what happened yesterday, last week, or last year? The basic past tense in French, also known as the passé composé, is used to talk about events in the past. It is aptly named because it is composed (composé) of two parts:
By Megan L.
Listen and Learn: French Animal Alphabet Flashcards

Listen and Learn: French Animal Alphabet Flashcards

Learning the ABC's is a great way for kids to get familiar with a new language. To help your child learn French, we created these fun French alphabet animal flashcards with audio from French tutor Carol Beth L. Scroll through the flashcards to look, listen, and practice the alphabet in French! As you practice, you might notice some of the French animal names are spelled similarly or sound similar to their names in English. Take extra care to listen to the audio and practice the French
By Megan L.
10 Ways to Memorize & Learn French Vocabulary Fast

10 Ways to Memorize & Learn French Vocabulary Fast

Learning French can be tricky. After all, studying this beautiful language involves memorizing all kinds of important French vocabulary. But if memorizing vocabulary in French is holding you back from speaking fluently and confidently, TakeLessons is here to help.  In our guide on how to memorize French vocabulary, we’ve outlined our favorite tips and tricks for committing both challenging and easy French vocab to memory. Use the following tips to “decode” vocabulary memorization s
By Megan L.
5 Ways to Practice French Conversation

5 Ways to Practice French Conversation

For many students, having a conversation in French can be intimidating. Luckily, tutor Nadia B. is here with tips to help you get started chatting it up with some new French friends... As you learn French, practicing it through conversation can become a regular part of your life, by following these easy tips. Before you know it, you will be practicing - and speaking - French with fluency! 1. Try a Meetup The easiest way to practice conversational French is to find a group of French
By Megan L.
French Grammar Rules: How to Conjugate Common Irregular Verbs

French Grammar Rules: How to Conjugate Common Irregular Verbs

Last week, French tutor Carol Beth L. treated us to a great lesson on conjugating regular verbs. This week, we look at conjugating common irregular French verbs... French grammar is full of irregularities and exceptions. They make sense when you understand the phonetic and grammatical in's and out's of the language, but can still be difficult to navigate – especially at the beginning. Covering every single irregular French verb out there, therefore, is a difficult task to tackle in just one
By Suzy S.
10 Best French Love Quotes to Impress Your Crush | TakeLessons

10 Best French Love Quotes to Impress Your Crush | TakeLessons

French has long been known as the language of love, and few cities are as romantic as Paris. If you’re looking for ways to impress your significant other, French love quotes go further than a box of chocolates or a bouquet ever could! These French expressions of love reveal a deep reverence for the romantic and refer to love as the essence of life. Many of these romantic french sayings can be taken as pieces of philosophy. Whether you want to dazzle your darling or deepen your understanding o
By Jessica Dais
15+ Fun (and Free) French Activities for Kids

15+ Fun (and Free) French Activities for Kids

Is your child learning to speak French? If so, it’s important that he or she practices French outside of school and/or private lessons. Finding fun ways to practice French, however, can be difficult. After all, there's only so much time in one day. Luckily, there are tons of fun French activities you can do with your child to help him or her learn and practice the language.  Below are 25+ fun (and free) French activities for kids. To make it easy to browse, the activities are bro
By Brooke Neuman
Bonne F�te des M�res! French Vocabulary for Mother's Day

Bonne F�te des M�res! French Vocabulary for Mother's Day

Here in the states, we celebrate Mother's Day on the second Sunday in May (psst that's May 10 this year!), but did you know that in France Mother's Day, known as la fête des mères, is celebrated either the last Sunday of May or the first Sunday in June? Despite the difference in timing, the French celebrate Mother's Day in many of the same ways we do, but with a few uniquely French touches. First things first, if you want to celebrate this holiday as the French do, you'll need to know a bi
By Megan L.
50 Fun French Games | TakeLessons Blog

50 Fun French Games | TakeLessons Blog

Whatever your level of French mastery, you can always improve your language skills by playing fun French games! In this list, you will find 50 of the best games from France and beyond that can be played alone, with a partner, or in a group. You’ll learn French card games, video games, traditional games, and more. Not only are the options below great for having a blast in your target language, but they’re just as fun as you gain more vocabulary and achieve fluency. These are games t
By Megan L.
French Music Countdown: 4 Biggest French Hits of Summer 2015

French Music Countdown: 4 Biggest French Hits of Summer 2015

Summer is a perfect time for learning French, but it's also a great time for letting loose! In this article, French teacher Seth N. takes you on a short tour of the top summer hits in France for 2015... Let the Tour Begin! Featuring a strong mix of international and local hits, the French pop charts for summer 2015 display an astounding diversity of French pop music. Everything from Norwegian producer Kygo’s club banger “Stole the Show,” to Jamaican sensation OMI’s catchy hit
By Suzy S.
3 Important Tips When Translating French to English

3 Important Tips When Translating French to English

Translating French to English is a common way to study the language and improve your skills. Tutor Nadia B. shares three big tips so you don't get lost in translation... Are you learning French and need to translate some of your French homework into English? Or perhaps you want to translate a French text just to be sure that you have understood the meaning? Translation is a useful tool for improving comprehension and fluency, so read on for three important tips for translating Frenc
By Megan L.
Learn French Vocabulary: Understanding Prefixes & Suffixes

Learn French Vocabulary: Understanding Prefixes & Suffixes

If you’ve been trying to learn French vocabulary, you may have noticed repeated beginnings or endings in French words? These are French prefixes and suffixes, and in today’s article French tutor Tyler S. breaks down everything you need to know so you can become a master French speaker... Whether you are just starting out on your French language journey or you’re looking to expand your current knowledge of this romantic language, it’s important to understand French suffixes and pre
By Megan L.
Build Your French Vocabulary: Family Members and Relationships

Build Your French Vocabulary: Family Members and Relationships

Learn how to talk about the most important people in your life in this French vocabulary lesson from tutor Emmanuel N.... French Vocabulary Words to Describe Your Family Bonjour, mes amis (Hello, my friends)! Let’s talk about our familles et amis (families and friends). If a man decides to marry a woman, she is sa femme (his wife), and he is son mari (her husband). Next, they might decide to settle down and start their own family. Most families have une mère et un père (a mother and
By Suzy S.
French Plays to Read Out Loud for Language Practice

French Plays to Read Out Loud for Language Practice

Learning French in textbooks is excellent.  Learning French through movies is fantastic! Unfortunately, oral skills are often neglected, even when they are most needed. The difference between learning French on paper and having a conversation with a native speaker requires a big leap. The only way to go through this scary but necessary step is to practice your oral french skills! How can you practice your oral French skills? French plays are a great place to start. Have you ever thought of r
By Sophie Cazeneuve

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