5 French Language Games to Make Learning French Fun

Joan S. Reed

Learning a new language can be tedious and boring but it does not have to be that way. Using French language games can make this work easier and more enjoyable for teachers and students alike. The newest learning methods use French language games in conjunction with audio and written lessons and they are a fun way for adults as well as children to learn how to speak French.

One of the easiest ways to get started with French language games is to play eye spy in French. This is a game that should be played with two or more players, ideally a small size classroom: the teacher will pick an item in the room and ask the students to guess what it is. For example: “je vois quelque chose de rouge/I see something red”; the students will answer by naming red items in French until the correct one has been found. Beginners can start with colours but more advanced learners should use the first letter of the word to be guessed.

Word searches and crosswords are French language games that can be played by students on their own or completed by entire classrooms as part of homework or class competition. These can be found in French magazines and newspapers downloaded from the Internet, but if you are a French teacher it is preferable to create your own, using vocabulary that your students are familiar with at first as some word games can be challenging.

The game of hangman (“le pendu” in French) is one of the simplest French language games and the first word game that many children learn to play. The teacher picks a French word and lets the player know how many letters are in the chosen word by drawing dotted lines where the letters should be; the player has to name the letters of the alphabet he or she thinks are contained in the word. When a correct letter has been guessed, the teacher writes it on the corresponding dotted line and if a letter has been proposed that is not part of the word, the teacher draws a part of the hangman. If the word is guessed before the hangman drawing is completed the student wins and vice-versa.

Older students can play the game of scrabble in French, where between 2 and 4 players create words from a combination of letters; with the aid of a French dictionary to look up words and their meaning, this popular word game has the potential of teaching new vocabulary and learners can get even more benefit out of it by making up sentences using the words found and saying them aloud.

If you are teaching grammar, one of the French languages games you can play with your students is to mix up the words from a French sentence and let them put the words back in the correct order. A similar exercise that helps in the comprehension of French is to make up a simple story four or five sentences long, mix the sentences and let the students put the story back in the correct order.

The use of French language games in new learning methods make learning French more interesting. Whether you are learning or teaching French, many resources are available to you and one of the places you can always rely on to find French language games is your own imagination.

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