Archive for December, 2010
French comics are often Belgian. In fact, it is almost impossible to speak about French cartoons without emphasizing the outstanding contribution of Belgium, where comics are considered an art in itself. Creators like Hergé, Franquin, Peyo, Greg and Morris, to name a few, have all created unforgettable characters who have acquired an immense fame. It is with pleasure that we present today a series of fun sites where you will learn about French culture through some of his most famous cartoons.
Tintin.be : With 24 albums having sold 230 million copies and translated into over 80 languages, Tintin is a cult comic strip. Created by the cartoonist Hergé more than 80 years ago, his adventures have delighted generations of readers while often helping them learn geography. Tintin’s official website, available in English, French and Dutch, not only brings together everything you need to know about his adventures and the endearing characters contained therein, but also many other things. There are games for all, and for children videos, topical articles focusing on several issues, including the conquest of space, and a section for tintinologists, who are Tintin’s hardcore fans. http://www.tintin.be/
Smurf.com : These little guys came out of the imagination Peyo (Pierre Culliford) in 1958. Fifty years later, books, activity books, television series, figurines and games are extremely popular all over the world. Their official website, available in six languages, tells the origin of the Smurfs, introduces the author, and each of the different but similar little blue characters, as well as the detestable Gargamel and his cat Azrael. A perfect location to learn to speak Smurf and French! http://www.smurf.com/smurf.php/www/home/fr
Gaston Lagaffe.com : Here is the official site of the mythical character created by André Franquin in 1957. Indolent, lazy and blundering, Gaston is the anti-hero par excellence. He holds a (too often lying) position in Spirou Magazine, where he spends most of his time trying to avoid work. On his website, you will discover all about Gaston Lagaffe: albums, characters, unpublished drawings, news, games and goodies as well as contests … and loads of blunders! French only. http://www.gastonlagaffe.com/
Astérix.com : Astérix is from France or rather from ancient Gaul. He is also another iconic character of the 9th art. His adventures take place in 50 BC, at the very time of Julius Caesar, in a village of indomitable Gauls. The series, created by writer René Goscinny and illustrator Albert Uderzo, has over 30 albums translated into 107 languages. The site is thus multilingual. The official virtual village of Asterix and his faithful companion Obelix includes all the news from Asterix, e-cards, « smailix »(smileys), video games, contests, unpublished drawings, film clips and much more and can be found at the following address: http://www.asterix.com/index.html.fr?rub=francais
This post presents four links especially directed to our young learners in elementary school. They will find coloring pages and a wide variety of games and interactive activities with audio files. Children will surely enjoy themselves while improving their French vocabulary and their general knowledge as well. Hours of fun!
Zut Language skills : Interactive Activities for French Teachers and Students. A terrific site that contains plenty of online interactive activities organised by class year. The resources include an opportunity to listen to conversations and then do comprehension exercises. The more difficult words are highlighted and may be selected for a translation. In addition to audio clips, there are word searches, crosswords, worksheets and other interesting resources. This British site is free to use after 4pm and before 9am (which is, in North America a part of the night and of the morning only) so it could be used as a homework resource. A subscription is required to access it at any time. http://zut.languageskills.co.uk/index.html
Zut Junior Language skills : Interactive Activities for French Teachers and Students. As its name suggests, this site is the younger brother of the former and is intended for younger children. The exercises include the following sections: Je parle français (I speak French), Je me présente (I introduce myself), En famille, (in the family), Les animaux (animals), Mon anniversaire (my birthday), Le monde (the world), Moi et mon école (my school and I), Qu’est-ce que tu veux ? (what do you want?), Les sports, Les vêtements, (clothing), J’habite (my place) and La France. The site also contains a Christmas section with exercises, christmas carols and pictures to print out and colour in. http://zutjunior.languageskills.co.uk/index.html
Enchanted Learning : French : This is a perfect site for children from third to fifth grade. In addition to visual English-French and French-English dictionaries wirh many audio files, this site offers printable colouring pages, some of which are real short books. There are interactive activities on several themes including: Colours, Numbers, Time and the Calendar, Shapes, Animals, The Body, People, Food, Clothing, The House, Vehicles, Opposites, Musical instrument, etc.. A place where children learn many things in addition to learning French! http://www.enchantedlearning.com/themes/french.shtml
See you next week
The goal of the three sites presented today is to provide support to pupils of primary, secondary and college levels. Through a series of games, exercises and explanations, they enable the refinement and practice of French lessons studied in class. In our opinion these activities, chosen with care by professional instructors, will be useful to those who are learning French independently.
WildFrench : This site is intended to assist both teachers and learners of French by making available a range of online resources that complement several of the courses actually in use in British schools. The material is designed for students of the late primary to the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GSCE). Click on the image of the textbook of your choice for a range of extra activities to help improve your progress and have some fun. http://www.wildfrench.co.uk/
Languages Online : This website’s aim is to provide an interactive format through which pupils can practice the language they learn in a variety of exercise styles. All resources provided on this site were initially designed for use by classes. Many units come with explanations, but it is assumed that learners should have been taught the material covered prior to attempting a unit. The site also includes games to play online or to download, and listening activities. http://www.languagesonline.org.uk/
Nourrir son français : Marie-Josée Caron’s website is intended for students of French as a Second Language (FSL) or as a Foreign Language(FFL), but also for all those who feel the need to self assess or to practice the rules of the French language. It contains many links listed by categories leading to exercises or to online documents about the French language. Click on “Ingrédients” to complete activities online or on the button “Recettes” (recipes) to go to grammars or dictionaries. To learn how to guide your study efficiently, click on “Projet”. http://www.er.uqam.ca/nobel/m205160/
See you soon
We have selected for you two magazines and a blog maintained by specialized teachers of French as a second or foreign language. They put at your disposal a large quantity of varied, enjoyable, stimulating educational ressources, for you to enjoy as you improve your language skills. The activities and explanations contained therein will surely captivate you.
Bonjour de France.com : This great webzine is written by FSL/ FFL teachers and features free educational exercises, tests and games to learn French as well as worksheets for teachers. It includes topics such as understanding (with exercises for all levels of learning), grammar, vocabulary, teaching, idioms, business French, simulation exercises in context (mises en situation), world news, discoveries and games for all. Something for everyone. http://www.bonjourdefrance.com/bonjour.htm
La gazette Lingua franca d’alpha.b : Here is the ezine of alpha.b, a language institute specialized in teaching French as a foreign language. The entries therein are of great interest for learners of French, notably « Le français dans tous ses états » (French in all its forms), which examines proverbs, idioms, false friends and anglicisms. “Leçons et exercices de français » (Lessons and French exercises) includes activities classified by level of knowledge, from A1 to C2. There is even humor in the « Lingua Franca vous met sur le coup » (Lingua Franca puts you on the spot) to discover. http://gazette.alpha-b.fr/
Moddou FLE -Estudio de Frances : This blog is sure to please. The author, Marc Oddou, offers a fine collection of activities of all kinds, many with audio files as well as clear and concise explanations. You’ll find the following sections: grammar, with a subfolder conjugation, vocabulary and games, phonetics, TBI (for « tableau blanc interactif » – interactive whiteboard), which contains activities with very interesting options. Must see. http://www.estudiodefrances.com/
Bon Français Team.