Bescherelle Le Jeu and Other French Language Games

If you are looking for games to buy for learning French or to use in French classes, I recommend the following: Bescherelle Le Jeu, Jeu de 7 Familles, Tam Tam Safari, and Apples to Apples.

Bescherelle Le Jeu: Le défi des conjugaisons et de la langue française is a very cool and nerdy game about the French language, mostly focusing on verb conjugations. (Click on images below for full size.)

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Bescherelle Le Jeu Board

The board is supposed to simulate the French school year, beginning with la rentrée and ending with les vacances d’été. You can read the rules online at the official site, but essentially the spaces you land on are either pronouns (conjugation questions) or Bescherelle (other grammar questions). If you land on a pronoun, you also have to spin the spinner to find out which verb tense you need to conjugate for.

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Conjugation cards in Bescherelle Le Jeu

The conjugations are mostly indicative tenses (including passé simple). Some questions on imperative, present subjunctive, and imperfect subjunctive can be found in levels two and three of the langue française cards; however, conditional is not included at all. The langue française cards also include questions on gender, plural nouns, spelling, homonyms, paronyms, etc.

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Niveau 2 cards

Le jeu de 7 familles, or Happy Families, is a great game for learning family members and the question do you have…? I bought several decks on amazon.fr and had students play in groups of 4. Most decks I found online use animals for the families, but I’ve also come across professions, nationalities, etc. There are also some free pdfs online if you’d like to print/laminate your own cards for different vocabulary topics.

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Jeu de 7 familles / Happy Families

Tam Tam Safari is a deck of cards that I came across when I was last in France. There are actually many ways to play with the cards, which include both words and pictures. The deck I have is CP level 1, but there are other levels available as well.

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Various ways to play Tam Tam Safari

I haven’t yet had a chance to use these cards in my classes, but I imagine you would need a few decks so that students could play in groups of 4 or 5.

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Tam Tam cards

Lastly, there is a French version of Apples to Apples! I had trouble getting my hands on it since Canadian Toys R Us wouldn’t ship outside Canada and sellers on amazon.fr wouldn’t ship outside France. I bought it ages ago but picked it up when I was in France in June. My students really enjoyed playing this, even if the first years couldn’t understand some of the red cultural cards. The green adjective cards have four synonyms though, so it’s great for learning more vocabulary.

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Apples to Apples cards

New Zealand Studies Association 21st Annual Conference: Empires and Cultures of the Pacific

Are you interested in New Zealand and Pacific Studies? Like Vienna and Hundertwasser? Want to go on a boat trip on the Danube? Then you should come to the New Zealand Studies Association conference in July 2015! If you’d like to present at this conference, the call for papers is now open. Deadline is January 11, […]

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EMMA: European Multiple MOOC Aggregator

If you’re looking for MOOCs in languages other than English, EMMA (European Multiple MOOC Aggregator) currently offers courses in Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Dutch and English, with courses in French, Catalan and Estonian coming soon.  Some videos don’t have subtitles (in any language), while some do so it’s a bit hit and miss at the moment. […]

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EuRom5: Read and Understand Five Romance Languages

EuRom5 is a multilingual book and accompanying website for learning to read and understand five Romance languages (Portuguese, Spanish, Catalan, Italian and French). It is written for a native or advanced speaker of one of these languages, so there are no English translations. The book is divided into three main sections: the introduction that explains […]

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English Teaching Assistant in France & Overseas Departments 2015-2016

If you would like to teach English in the public school system in France as an assistant for the 2015-2016 school year (October 1, 2015 to April 30, 2016), use the links below to find out the specific requirements and application process for your country. In general, you must be a native English speaker, have […]

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MOOCs for Learning Languages

In a post about using MOOC videos and subtitles to learn languages one year ago, I noted that none of the major MOOC providers were offering courses to teach languages. Luckily that has changed over the past year: On Coursera, you will now find a self-paced Mandarin Chinese for Beginners course that you can join […]

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Easter Island, Myths and Popular Culture Exhibition in Sydney – October & November 2014

If you’ll be in Sydney this October or November and you have an interest in Easter Island, then head to the Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre for a free exhibition on the representations of Easter Island in popular culture. I am co-curating this exhibition and I will be at the Powerhouse for the soft opening where […]

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Teaching Tools Tip of the Day: Dry Erase Sheets and Dry Erase Pockets

Dry erase board and markers for use in the classroom are well worth the money. It’s no secret that I love to make games for my French classes, and I am so glad I decided to invest in both dry erase boards and dry erase pockets. You can actually buy sheets rather than boards so […]

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AILA World Congress 2014: International Applied Linguistics Association Conference

I was in Brisbane all last week for the AILA 2014 World Congress, the largest conference for applied linguistics in the world. It is held every three years and I had just missed out on the Beijing conference in 2011 by one month when I first started my PhD. I presented my research on stylistic […]

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The end of my PhD is near, so what’s next?

I have just finished writing the last chapter of data analysis for my thesis. Now I need to write the conclusion and abstract, update my literature review, and do some final revisions then the printing and binding of four copies. Technically I have until March 2015 to submit, so if I haven’t managed to find […]

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Why is Jennie no longer in France?

I created this blog in September 2006 when I moved to France from Michigan to teach English. Many of the earlier posts are about my personal life in France, dealing with culture shock, traveling in Europe and becoming fluent in French. In July 2011, I relocated to Australia to start my PhD in Applied Linguistics. Although I am no longer living in France, my research is on foreign language pedagogy and I teach French at a university so these themes appear most often on the blog. I also continue to post about traveling and being an American abroad.

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