Learning French in Paris, Leçon 1 – 2

Crépieux, G. Massé, O. Rousse, J. (2013) Interactions 1: Méthode De Français (Course material for Français langue étrangère at Lycée d’Adultes, Paris)


When speaking French the sentences are rhythmic. It actually makes it a lot easier to say things especially in the longer sentences. They are divided up into rhythmic groups with each group inside the phrase having a slightly higher pitch on the last syllable except for the last one which has a lower pitch. The exception for this is a question where the last syllable has a raised pitch as well.

Bonjour Monsieur.Hello, Sir.
Bonjour Monsieur, ravi de vous connaître.Hello, Sir. Nice to meet you.
Bonjour Monsieur/, je suis ravi/ de faire votre connaissance.Hello Sir, it is a pleasure to meet you.

Questions – Accent

When asking a question in French the inflection rises at the end of the sentence. For instance, if you were asking the question,”Do you like films?”

Do you like films?English
Tu aimes les films?Do you like films?

At the end of the sentence the inflection (pitch, intonation, etc..) will rise. This doesn’t happen when answering. When answering the inflection goes down so in the conversation,

Do you like films?Inflection
Tu aimes les films?Up at the end of the sentence.
J’aime bien les films.Down at end of sentence.

Questions – Where do you live?

The basic question of where does someone live can be asked as below,

Where do you live?EnglishAnswerEnglish
Où habites-tu?Where do you live?J’habite à Paris.I live in Paris.
Où habites vous?Where do you live?J’habite à Grenoble.I live in Grenoble.
Tu habites où?Where do you live?J’habite à côté de Paris.I live near Paris.
Vous habites où?Where do you live?J’habite à côté de la Grande Bibliothèque.I live near the Great Library.

These of course can be turned around so that instead of saying “I live…” or “Where do you live?” you could say things like

FrenchEnglishFrench answerEnglish answer
Qui habite à Grenoble?Who lives in Grenoble?Elle habite à Grenoble.She lives in Grenoble.
Il habite où, John?He lives where, Jane?Il habite à côté de Grenoble.He lives near Grenoble.
Tu habite en Paris.You live in Paris.
Il habite à cote à Paris.He lives near Paris.
Elle habite à cote à Paris.She lives near Paris.

Words and phrases

Ravi de faire ta connaissance.Nice to meet you.
J’aimeI like.
Dans le quartier.In the neighbourhood.
Qui est nouveau dans le classe?Who is new in the class?
PrenomFirst name
Nom de familleFamily name
John, c’est masculin, non?Thibault, it is masculine?
Jane, c’est féminin, non?Jane, it’s feminine isn’t it?
C’est ça.That is it.

These notes are from Interactions 1 Méthode de Française A1.1 and where copyrighted work is used it is done so under the New Zealand Copyright Act 1994.

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