How I Learned French From Scratch (Part 3)

To learn French from scratch is to keep repeating yourself the basic phrases and apply them in your day to day (chaque-jour) conversation, no matter what you do. The more you apply the new (nouveau) phrases and vocabulary (vocabulaire) you learned, the easier it is for you to converse (parler) in the new language (langue), in this case, French (français).

 

Let us take a look at the common French phrases we have gone through in the previous two parts of this series.

 

Ultra Common French Phrases

  • Bonjour - hi/good morning
  • Bonsoir - good evening
  • Salut - hi/bye
  • Coucou - hi
  • Comment-allez vous? - How are you? (Formal)
  • Comment ça va? - How are you? (Informal)
  • Ça va? - How are you? (Casual)
  • S’il vous plaît - Please
  • Merci - Thank you
  • Bonne journée - Have a good day
  • Bonne soirée - Have a good evening
  • Au revoir - Goodbye
  • À bientôt - See you soon
  • À plus tard - See you in a while
  • À plus - See you later (Casual)
  • À tout-à-l’heure - See you in an hour
  • À demain - See you tomorrow
  • À semaine prochain - See you next week

Introducing yourself

This is the fourth lesson and we are going to introduce ourselves in class. When introducing yourself, you would normally say your name, your age (if you want to), your occupation, and maybe your family members (or anyone you are living with).

 

For example,

“Bonjour! Je suis Thomas.” = Hi! I am Thomas.

 

Or, you can also say,

“Bonjour (Hi), je (I) m’appelle (call myself) Thomas.”

 

The next example is to say your age. In French, age is something one possesses, and therefore, it is a number that the person has. So, instead of saying “I am” in this case, you would say it as “I have”.

 

“J’ai trente-cinq ans.” = I have 35 years old.

(In English, it is written as “I am 35 years old.”)

 

The third example is to say your occupation. So, similar to the first example, your occupation is part of your identity. Therefore, you use the word “suis” if you are the one introducing yourself.

 

For example,

“Je suis un éditeur et un blogueur.” = I am an editor and a blogger.

 

Conjugations for 'Être' (to be) and 'Avoir' (to have) — Learn French from Scratch

Conjugations for 'Être' (to be) and 'Avoir' (to have) — Learn French from Scratch

 

When introducing your family members, you may use the following list of words to call them in French. Do note that you use masculine gender to refer to male family members and feminine gender to refer to female family members.

 

Your Family Members in French — Learn French from Scratch

Your Family Members in French — Learn French from Scratch

 

Introducing Your Professions

When introducing your profession, you say the profession after the words “Je suis”, which means “I am” in French, followed by an article “un” or “une” depending on the gender.

 

For example:

Saying Your Profession in French — Learn French from Scratch

Saying Your Profession in French — Learn French from Scratch

 

In the fifth lesson, we learn to state our place of origin and to say where we live. We learned the names of the country and how to conjugate them according to their gender in a sentence.

 

This might take a little bit of time and effort on your part to try to understand the small complexity in this part of the lesson.

 

To introduce your nationality, you begin the same way by saying “Je suis”, and then add the nationality at the end of the sentence.

 

For example:

Je suis Americain.

Je suis Mexician.

Je suis Japonais.

 

To say where you are from, you use the phrase “Je viens de”. So, to conjugate each pronoun in present tense, here are some examples:

 

Je viens de… (I am from...)

Tu viens de… (You are from...)

Il vient de… (He is from...)

Elle vient de… (She is from...)

Nous venons de… (We are from...)

Vous venez de… (You all are from...)

Ils viennent de… (They [mas.] are from...)

Elles viennent de… (They [fem.] are from...)

 

To state your place of origin, you need to, for a start, take note of the gender for each country or city.

 

For cities — De (from), À (in/to)

Example:

de New York, à New York, de Singapour, à Singapour.

 

For Masculine countries — Le (the), Du (from), Au (in/to)

Example:

le Luxemboug, le Mexique, le Japon, le Khazakstan, le Pakistan, le Bangladesh, le Royaume-uni, le Canada, le Brésil, le Pérou, le Chili, le Costa Rica, le Portugal, le Danemark, le Maroc, le Vénézuela.

 

For Feminime countries — La (the), De (from), En (in/to)

Example:

la Chine, la Thailand, la Finlande, la Nouvelle Zélande, la Bélgique, la Russie, la Corée du Sud, la Corée du Nord, la Norvège, la Turquire, la Mongolie, la Malaise, la Suède, la Hollande, la Indonésie, la Roumainie, la Colombie, la Jamaique, la Suisse, la Pologne, la Slovaque République, la Tchèque, la Hongrie, la France.

 

For countries starting with a vowel — L’ (the), D’ (from), En (in/to)

Example:

l’Angleterre, l’Afrique, l’Australie, l’Ukraine, l’Israël, l’Iran, l’Espagne, l’Arabie saoudite, l’Inde, l’Egypte, l’Allemagne, l’Italie, l’Argentine, l’Afghanistan, l’Uruguay, l’Andorre.

 

For countries with a plural — Les (the), Des (from), Aux (in/to)

Example:

les Philippines, les États-Unis, les Ile Maurise, les Pays-Bas, les Emirats arabes unis, les Seychelles.

 

More Examples

Tu habites à Rouen. Tu parles français?

You live in Roeun. Do you speak French?

 

Thomas habite à Tokyo. Il est Japonais. Il vient du Japon.

Thomas lives in Tokyo. He is Japanese. He is from Japan.

 

Paul et Marie habitent à New York. Ils est Americains. Ils viennent des États-Unis.

Paul and Maire live in New York. They are Americans. They are from the United States.

 

Alex et moi parlons anglais. Nous venons d’Angleterre. Nous allons en Russie.

Alex and I speak English. We are from England. We are going to Russia.

 


That's all for lesson 4 and 5! Stay tuned for more updates on my future French classes. If you'd like to read more of such posts, subscribe to my blog's newsletters by filling out the form below.

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