Visit Your Local PBS Station PBS Home PBS Home Programs A-Z TV Schedules Watch Video Donate Shop PBS Search PBS

Top Ten Lists | Sample Test
Program Summary | All About
Vocabulary | Resources
Something to Consider
all about french

Bonjour! Welcome to Standard Deviants TV French, where learning is anything but standard. We'll go over the ins and outs of the French language and have a lot of le fun—that's "fun"—at the same time. So, the next time someone asks you, "Parlez vous français?" you'll be able to proudly say, "Oui"…

Click here to review everything covered in this episode of Standard Deviants TV. go!

  1. Pronunciation
    1. Vowels
    2. Accent marks
    3. Cognates
  2. Small Talk
    1. Greetings
    2. Introductions
  3. Likes and Dislikes
    1. Infinitives
    2. "-er" Verbs
    3. Ne...pas
  4. Gender and Articles
    1. Gender
  5. Family Members
  6. Making Conversation


1. How many letters does the modern French alphabet have?
a) 25
b) 26
c) 30
d) 32

2. How many different accents are used for French vowels?
a) 2
b) 3
c) 4
d) 5

3. Bien merci means:
a) good night
b) good, thanks
c) good day
d) very pretty

4. Je m'appelle means:
a) How are you?
b) I am fine
c) My name is
d) I love apples

5. What does aimer mean?
a) to aim
b) to like
c) to live
d) to love

6. True or False: The proper way to pronounce the letter "g" in French is like a soft "g" (zhee).
TRUE
FALSE

7. French accents are used to:
a) change the pronunciation of a vowel
b) differentiate between similarly spelled words
c) both a and b
d) none of the above

8. Which accent is used with a consonant instead of a vowel?
a) la cèdille
b) l'accent aigu
c) l'accent grave
d) le trèma

9. Words in different languages that share a common ancestor are called:
a) cousins
b) roots
c) conjunctions
d) cognates

10. How could you answer someone if they asked you "Comment-vas tu?"
a) "Formidable!"
b) "Je m'appelle Leon"
c) "Enchantè"
d) "J'ai des oiseaux orange"

11. What is the appropriate response when someone asks you, "Comment t'appelles-tu?"
a) "Enchantè"
b) "Je m'appelle Pierre"
c) "Kick them in the shins"
d) "Bien merci, et toi?"

12. To ask a stranger how he's doing today, you would say:
a) "Comment-vas tu?"
b) "Comment allez-vous?"
c) "Waaazzz-up?"
d) "Comment t'appelles-tu?"

13. True or False: The formal form of "you" is nous.
TRUE
FALSE

14. The most basic form of a verb is called the:
a) derivative
b) infinitive
c) implicative
d) superlative

15. Which of the following verbs are written in order of increasing preference?
a) dètester, adorer, aimer
b) adorer, aimer, dètester
c) adorer, dètester, aimer
d) dètester, aimer, adorer

Click here to see the answers.


something to consider
1. The five accent marks in French are l'accent aigu, l'accent grave, l'accent circonflexe, le tréma, and la cédille. Why do you think accent marks are used? Why are most accent marks (all of them except la cédille) used with vowels?

2. Words in different languages that share a common ancestor are called cognates. As you would expect, the meaning and spelling of cognates can be very similar. For example, the French word l'hôpital is close to the English word "hospital." What cognates can you think of? Do you know any French words that look like an English word, but have a different meaning (sometimes called false cognates)?

3. Which French letters are easiest for you to pronounce? Which ones are more difficult?

4. How are the French usually portrayed in television programs and movies? What stereotypes, either positive or negative, do people associate with the French?

5. Why are French fries called French fries? (Hint: They're not from France.)

Back to the Top

eiffel tower



France produces over 400 types of cheeses. Some, such as Roquefort, require lengthy stays in caves for optimum flavor.

top ten
Top 10 Reasons to Learn French

10. Gals dig French.

9. Guys dig French.

8. Your brother knows French—and why can't you be more like your brother?

7. Nasally "oo" sounds really clear out the sinuses.

6. It's there.

5. So you can figure out what that French guy at work has been calling you for the past 5 years.

4. To never again eat an entire meal at a French restaurant only to learn later that it consisted of fried pig snouts and pickled frog legs. (Yuck!)

3. Sentences like "Je n'parle pas anglais, officer" come in handy when you've been pulled over in Paris.

2. So you can safely insult your boss and sound really suave at the same time.

1. Everybody's doin' it!

 
vocabulary
Commonly Used Words and Phrases

au revoir — goodbye

bien — good

bienvenu — welcome

bonjour — hello

bonsoir — good evening

ça va? — how's it going?

commen t'appelles-tu? — what is your name?

comment vas-tu? — how's it going?

français — French

je m'appelle… — my name is…

merci — thank you

oui — yes

pas mal — not bad

salut — hello (informal)

tu — you (familiar)

voilà — here is

Nouns

la bicyclette — bike

la boulangerie — bakery

le bureau — desk

la chambre — room

la chance — luck

le chien — dog

le cinéma — cinema

la journée — day

la lumière — light

la musique — music

la nature — nature

le pont — bridge

le restaurant — restaurant

le tapis — rug

la télévision — television

Family Members

la femme — woman, wife

la fille — daughter

le fils — son

le frère — brother

la grand-mère — grandmother

le grand-père — grandfather

le mari — husband

la mère — mother

l'oncle — uncle

le père — father

la sïur — sister

la tante — aunt

Colors

blanc(he) — white

bleu(e) — blue

brun(e) — brown

jaune — yellow

noir(e) — black

orange — orange

rouge — red

vert(e) — green

violet(te) — violet

Verbs

adorer — to love

aimer — to like

chanter — to sing

danser — to dance

détester — to hate

écouter — to listen

j'aime — I like

marcher — to walk

préférer — to prefer

tu aimes — you like

 
resources
All About French

Joe's French Page

The French Tutorial

Fast and Friendly French For Fun

ZipZapFrance

The French Learning Website

AltaVista Translation Service

    
  SDTV Home | About SDTV | Episodes & Resources
For the Classroom | Screensavers