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Un and une
Tu and vous
Personal pronouns
Être in the present
Ah bon !
Basic verb negation
Indefinite articles
Avoir in the present
Avoir and idiomatic expressions
Il y a
Introduction to French verbs
-ER verbs in the present
Definite articles
Voilà and Voici
Prepositions with aller
Aller in the present
Ça va
Avoir and idiomatic expressions (part 2)
Qu’est-ce que c’est ?
C’est, ce n’est pas
Ce sont, ce ne sont pas
-IR verbs in the present
Être en train de
-RE verbs in the present
Possessive determiners
Tu te rends compte !
Tu ne te rends pas compte !
Introduction to questions
Faire in the present
Faire et expressions idiomatiques
Ça ne fait rien / Cela ne fait rien
Modal verbs vouloir, pouvoir, devoir
Demonstrative determiners
À mon avis..
DIRE (to say), LIRE (to read), ÉCRIRE (to write)
Alternate forms of negation
Dis donc ! Dites donc !
-RE verbs (irregular) like prendre
Interrogative and exclamative quel
C'est-à-dire / C'est-à-dire que
-RE verbs (irregular) like mettre
Partitive articles
Bon marché
Interrogative words
Je n’en reviens pas !
BOIRE (to drink), CROIRE (to believe), VOIR (to see)
Time in French
Bien dans sa peau / Mal dans sa peau
Savoir vs Connaître
Par contre / En revanche
Pronominal verbs
Tôt, tard, en avance, en retard, à l’heure
Il ne casse pas trois pattes à un canard
-RE verbs (irregular) like suivre, vivre
Comparative and superlative of adverbs
A priori
Passé composé with avoir
Negation and placement of adverbs with passé composé
C'est pas de la tarte
Passé composé with être
More past participles for être
Direct object pronouns
Agreement of the past participle
Les doigts dans le nez
Passé composé of pronominal verbs
Past participle agreement : exception + more pronominal verbs
Être à côté de la plaque
Depuis / Il y a...que / Ça fait...que
Coordinating conjunctions
Au lieu de
Imparfait : formation
Imparfait : uses
N’importe quoi
Indirect object pronouns
C’est vs il est/elle est and on
À la vôtre / À vos souhaits / À la vôtre
Impersonal verbs and expressions
Indefinite pronouns
Quand même
Infinitive constructions - Part I
Infinitive constructions - Part II
Rien à voir
Comparisons with adjectives
Superlative adjectives
Mettre la charrue avant les boeufs
Simple future
Simple future: irregular stems
Un de ces quatre matins
Disjunctive pronouns
Subordinating conjunctions
Être comme un coq en pâte
Causative avec faire
Present participle
Au fur et à mesure

Is this a French language course or a play?

What is French for Beginners Language Theatre? Is it a course or a play? It’s both! We proudly present a one-of-a kind educational program for beginners that includes vocabulary, grammar, exercises, dialogue, and much more in the form of a theatrical performance!

The plot of the play is simple. Valerie, our French tutor, gives one-on-one lessons to beginner students. Valerie has three rules for her students:

1. Complete the assigned lesson on the website and memorize new vocabulary on the flashcards before coming in for one-on-one studies.

2. You can talk about anything, as long as you employ grammar introduced in the lesson.

3. Don't be afraid to switch to English if you don’t know how to say something in French - but switch back to French as soon as you can!

Follow our heroes from Act 1, with conversation mostly in English, to Act 30, where they speak mostly French with Valerie's colorful students, you will learn the fundamentals of French grammar and expressions. Your vocabulary will expand rapidly and naturally, and your comprehension skills will improve dramatically.

Enjoy the characters, their secrets, desires, and motivations to learn French Follow the 3 Valerie’s rules and learn with our students, Michelle, Jack, and Kevin! Bon voyage!

Act #1
Does Roast Beef mean “I’m ready to settle down?”

Narrator Opening

Mouse-over French text fragments in blue to see English translation
Bienvenue ! Welcome to the Language Theater! Come in, come in! Take your seat and get ready for a unique experience. My name is Jean-Paul and I will take you through this masterful play.

I hope you will enjoy the performance and learn to understand and even speak French by the end of the play. Oh, and by the way, it’s a long play... from one act to the next, you will learn the language, discover nuances of French culture, and experience the thrill of a theatrical performance in the language you are learning. Oui, oui ! We start with just a few words of French in Act I, but by the end of our play, most of the acts will be performed in French! Oh, what a thrill it is to enjoy a play in French!

Now, a few words about the format of the show, or “course” if you will ... A French teacher, Valérie, gives one-on-one lessons. The students who come for the lessons have very little knowledge of French, almost none. From the first lesson to the last, they will learn to the extent that each one of them will be able to understand and speak French well. You are cordially invited to enjoy the Language Theater and learn French with our students.

Well, let’s begin Act I. Valérie, our French teacher, is waiting for her student Jack. This is the first time Valérie and Jack meet in person.

Mouse-over French text fragments in blue to see English translation
Valérie: Bonjour ! Êtes-vous Jacques ?
Jack: Excuse me?
Valérie: Hello, are you Jacques?
Jack: Oh, right! Bonjour ! Oui, oui, je suis Jacques.
Valérie: Très bien ! Please, come on in! It is very nice to meet you, and I’m glad that you want to learn French.
Jack: Thank you, Valérie!
Valérie: Well, let’s start our first lesson.
Jack: Thank you so much for taking me as a student!
Valérie: You are most welcome, Jacques! But, before we start, tell me a little about yourself. You have studied French before, right?
Jack: In school, if it counts. I just remember a few words like “Bonjour, je m’appelle Jacques, s’il vous plaît, merci, au revoir.
Valérie: Very good!
Jack: But, I am very serious about studying.
Valérie: Excellent! May I ask why you have decided to go back to studying French? I would like to know what your goals are so that I can successfully design a course for you.
Jack: Sure! You see, I have this idea, it's a business idea and I will need a good knowledge of French, and I may add French culture.
Valérie: Oh! It's intriguing! What is that? Is that a secret?
Jack: It’s a French restaurant! I want to open a French restaurant.
Valérie: Ah bon ? ...Really?
Jack: I have so many ideas about this restaurant, so it’s going to be great! But I really need to be able to speak French and I need to know cultural nuances to design a great menu.
Valérie: Well, good luck! Bonne chance !
Jack: Merci !
Valérie: Well, let’s not waste time. Let's start learning!

Let's practice pronunciation on few short phrases from today's episode. Listen carefully how the native speaker pronounces each sentence. Follow the intonations in each sentence. When you are ready, record one paragraph at a time with your own voice and then compare your pronunciation and intonations to the native speaker's:

Please allow the use of the microphone
Ready to record 00:08

Textfield background will turn blue if your answer is correct, and red if the answer is incorrect
Mouse-over French text fragments in blue to see English translation

Mouse-over French text fragments in blue to see English translation
Well, mes amis, my friends, this is the end of Act I. I hope you are as enthusiastic about learning French as our friend Jack, or how Valérie calls him - Jacques. Study the lessons on our website and then listen to the grammar and expressions dialogs. Do not neglect the grammar and pronunciation exercises either! The curtain is down, the intermission begins, we’ll see you soon in Act II. À bientôt !