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Archive for February, 2014

French Grammar: Ça alors! (How About That!) Posted by on Feb 27, 2014

Let’s quickly quiz your French grammar: Can you tell what the difference is between “ça“, “çà“, and “sa“? “Ça“, “çà“, and “sa“: Just take a look at them. All three se prononcent exactement de la même façon (are pronounced exactly the same way.) How on Earth then are we to tell them apart—especially if we are to run into them in the middle…

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French Indefinite Subject Pronoun Posted by on Feb 25, 2014

It’s time to turn French Grammar “ON” again here on the Transparent French Blog! And what a coincidence it is, because today you’ll be given a few precious pointers as to how to use the indefinite French pronoun “On“, which, as we know very well, can often cause some serious headache to the débutants learners of the French language…

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“Tu Tires ou tu Pointes?”: An Introduction to the Game of Pétanque (Part 2) Posted by on Feb 24, 2014

In the last post, we took a quick look at the evolution of the game of pétanque and talked a little about its popularity and its appeal. Today, let’s take a moment to learn the basics of the game and how it is played. The aim of pétanque is to get as many of your…

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“Tu Tires ou tu Pointes?”: An Introduction to the Game of Pétanque (Part 1) Posted by on Feb 21, 2014

France, like most countries of the world, seems to have a fascination with le football (soccer). Football has legions of fans throughout France but there is another game that is nearly as popular and that appeals to people of all ages. Pétanque (pronounced pay-tonk), commonly referred to as le jeu de boules (the game of…

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L’Amour est dans l’Air (Love is in the Air): The Origins of Valentine’s Day Posted by on Feb 14, 2014

Today is Valentine’s Day and for people in many countries across the world, it can only mean one thing: l’Amour (Love). But how did le jour de Saint Valentin (St. Valentine’s day) come to be? To understand the origins of Valentine’s Day, we must travel back plusieurs siècles (several centuries) to the days of the…

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À l’École!: Fournitures Scolaires (School Supplies) Posted by on Feb 13, 2014

Try to recall, for a moment, your days in grammar school. What kinds of school supplies did you use? Pens and paper? Pencils and erasers? One of my favorite back-to-school memories was going shopping for new supplies for the new year. Although I never really enjoyed school in my younger years, getting shiny new supplies…

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À l’École!: French and American Grade Levels Compared Posted by on Feb 10, 2014

It seems like just yesterday I was beginning my first year of French school in the small town of Villeneuve-sur-Lot in the Lot-et-Garonne department of southwestern France. Jean Jaurès was l’école élémentaire publique (public elementary school) in my area and was named for the French socialist leader who lived in the early 20th century. The…

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