Practice French verb conjugations

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Conjugating the Simple Tenses of Regular French Verbs

If the infinitive of a regular French verb ends in –er, -ir, or –re, you can follow a fixed pattern in conjugating the verb. If you learn to conjugate one verb in each of the groups, you will know how to conjugate hundreds of others. The following chart has the conjugation of the five simple tenses of three common regular verbs: parler (to speak), finir (to finish), and vendre (to sell). Just take the appropriate stem for each tense and add the required ending.

Regular -er Verb Endings


Tense (stem) je tu il/elle/on nous vous ils/elles
Present (parl) -e -es -e -ons -ez -ent
Imperfect (parl) -ais -ais -ait -ions -iez -aient
Future (parler) -ai -as -a -ons -ez -ont
Conditional (parler) -ais -ais -ait -ions -iez -aient
Subjunctive (parl) -e -es -e -ions -iez -ent
Regular -ir Verb Endings


Tense (stem) je tu il/elle/on nous vous ils/elles
Present (fini) -s -s -t -ssons -ssez -ssent
Imperfect (finiss) -ais -ais -ait -ions -iez -aient
Future (finir) -ai -as -a -ons -ez -ont
Conditional (finir) -ais -ais -ait -ions -iez -aient
Subjunctive (finiss) -e -es -e -ions -iez -ent
Regular -re Verb Endings


Tense (stem) je tu il/elle/on nous vous ils/elles
Present (vend) -s -s (nothing) -ons -ez -ent
Imperfect (vend) -ais -ais -ait -ions -iez -aient
Future (vendr) -ai -as -a -ons -ez -ont
Conditional (vendr) -ais -ais -ait -ions -iez -aient
Subjunctive (vend) -e -es -e -ions -iez -ent



Conjugating Compound Tenses with Regular French Verbs

To conjugate French compound tenses, you need an auxiliary verb, usually avoir (to have) or être (to be), plus the past participle of the desired verb. The following example shows French compound tenses conjugated with the past participles of parler (to speak) with avoir as the auxiliary and arriver (to arrive) with être as the auxiliary.

Creating Compound Tenses with the Auxiliary Avoir (Parler)


Tense je tu il/elle/on nous vous ils/elles
Passé Composé ai parlé as parlé a parlé avons parlé avez parlé ont parlé
Pluperfect avais parlé avais parlé avait parlé avions parlé aviez parlé avaient parlé
Future Perfect aurai parlé auras parlé aura parlé aurons parlé aurez parlé auront parlé
Past Conditional aurais parlé aurais parlé aurait parlé aurions parlé auriez parlé auraient parlé
Past Subjunctive aie parlé aies parlé ait parlé ayons parlé ayez parlé aient parlé
Creating Compound Tenses with the Auxiliary Être (Arriver)


Tense je tu il/elle/on nous vous ils/elles
Passé Composé suis arrivé (e) es arrivé (e) est arrivé (e) sommes arrivés (es) êtes arrivé (e)(s) (es) sont arrivés (es)
Pluperfect étais arrivé (e) étais arrivé (e) était arrivé (e) étions arrivés (es) étiez arrivé (e) (s) (es) étaient arrivés (es)
Future Perfect serai arrivé (e) seras arrivé (e) sera arrivé (e) serons arrivés (es) serez arrivé (e) (s) (es) seront arrivés (es)
Past Conditional serais arrivé (e) serais arrivé (e) serait arrivé (e) serions arrivés (es) seriez arrivé (e) (s) (es) seraient arrivés (es)
Past Subjunctive sois arrivé (e) sois arrivé (e) soit arrivé (e) soyons arrivés (es) soyez arrivé (e) (s) (es) soient arrivés (es)



Imperative Forms of French Verbs

In French, the imperative mood expresses an order, request, or directive and is created with regular verbs by using the verb directly and eliminating the subject pronoun. The imperative uses the present tense of most verbs and the conjugations of three subject pronouns: tu (when speaking to someone familiar), vous (when speaking to someone unfamiliar, older, a group, or a superior), and nous (when including yourself in the group). Regular er, -ir, and re verbs follow the same pattern in commands as shown in the following example, along with an example of a command using a pronominal verb and pronoun.


Parler (to speak) Finir (to finish) Vendre (to sell) Se laver (to wash)
Parle! Finis! Vends! Lave-toi!
Parlons! Finissons! Vendons! Lavons-nous!
Parlez! Finissez! Vendez! Lavez-vous!



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Tense je tu il/elle/on nous vous ils/elles Passé Composé ai parlé as parlé a parlé avons parlé avez parlé ont parlé Pluperfect avais parlé avais parlé avait parlé avions parlé aviez parlé avaient parlé Future Perfect aurai parlé auras parlé aura parlé aurons parlé aurez parlé auront parlé Past Conditional aurais parlé aurais parlé aurait parlé aurions parlé auriez parlé auraient parlé Past Subjunctive aie parlé aies parlé ait parlé ayons parlé ayez parlé aient parlé

Creating Compound Tenses with the Auxiliary Être (Arriver)


Tense je tu il/elle/on nous vous ils/elles
Passé Composé suis arrivé (e) es arrivé (e) est arrivé (e) sommes arrivés (es) êtes arrivé (e)(s) (es) sont arrivés (es)
Pluperfect étais arrivé (e) étais arrivé (e) était arrivé (e) étions arrivés (es) étiez arrivé (e) (s) (es) étaient arrivés (es)
Future Perfect serai arrivé (e) seras arrivé (e) sera arrivé (e) serons arrivés (es) serez arrivé (e) (s) (es) seront arrivés (es)
Past Conditional serais arrivé (e) serais arrivé (e) serait arrivé (e) serions arrivés (es) seriez arrivé (e) (s) (es) seraient arrivés (es)
Past Subjunctive sois arrivé (e) sois arrivé (e) soit arrivé (e) soyons arrivés (es) soyez arrivé (e) (s) (es) soient arrivés (es)



Imperative Forms of French Verbs

In French, the imperative mood expresses an order, request, or directive and is created with regular verbs by using the verb directly and eliminating the subject pronoun. The imperative uses the present tense of most verbs and the conjugations of three subject pronouns: tu (when speaking to someone familiar), vous (when speaking to someo

Master French Conjugation: 10 Tips and Tricks to Make it Fun and Easy!

Do you ever find yourself struggling to conjugate French verbs?

You’re not alone. Conjugating French verbs can be a daunting task, especially for beginners. But don’t worry—it doesn’t have to be a chore. With the right tips and tricks, you can master French conjugation and make it fun and easy!

From using mnemonic devices to conjugating in context, there are plenty of ways to make conjugation a breeze. Ready to master French conjugation? Read on for 10 tips and tricks that will help you learn those pesky verb forms in no time!

What is French conjugation?

Conjugation is the way a verb is put into a certain tense. In English, we only conjugate verbs in the present tense. In French, with its more complex grammar, you must also conjugate verbs in the past tense, future tense, etc.

The table below shows the basic French conjugations for regular verbs.

Verb Endings Examples
-er verbs like parler (to speak), aimer (to like), and finir (to finish)
-ir verbs like finir (to finish), attendre (to wait), and répondre (to respond)
-re verbs like parler (to speak) and vendre (to sell)

Why is it important?

Conjugating verbs correctly in French is essential for communicating effectively. There’s nothing more frustrating than trying to understand what someone is trying to tell you if you don’t know how to conjugate verbs or which tense to use. Even native speakers make mistakes when conjugating verbs.

Let’s look at the two most commonly used verbs in the French language: être (to be) and avoir (to have). Although these verbs are extremely important in French grammar, their conjugations can be very tricky.

Just think about how long it took you to learn their correct conjugations! Imagine how stressful it would be to try to communicate with someone who was conjugating these verbs incorrectly.

We’ve all had the experience of trying to make sense of someone who is speaking too quickly or whose accent makes it harder to understand what they are saying. In these situations, it is important to know how to conjugate verbs correctly so you can clarify what you are trying to say.

a. Use mnemonic devices

One way to make learning French conjugations easier is to use mnemonic devices. A mnemonic device is a trick you can use to make information
Mnemonic devices can help you make connections between the information you are trying to learn and something you already know. For example, you can use an acronym to help you remember the different types of French verbs.
The most common acronym used to remember French verb types is “AVEC”: A – “Verbs ending in -er” V – “Verbs ending in -ir” E – “Verbs ending in -re” C – “Verbs that are ‘irregular’”

b. Write out conjugations

It may sound odd, but writing out conjugations can help you learn them. When you write out conjugations, you are forced to pause and think about each form, which can make it easier to remember them.
Once you have written out a conjugation, you can practice writing it again and again until it is imprinted in your mind. You can write out the most common conjugations for regular verbs first and then move on to the other types of verbs.
You can even use your smartphone to open a document and record yourself pronouncing each verb conjugation, which is a great way to practice.

c. Listen to audio recordings

Another great way to learn French conjugations is to listen to audio recordings. Not only can audio clips help you better understand the pronunciation of words and how they are used in a sentence, but they can also help you learn new words. You can find audio clips online that are designed to help you learn and review French verb conjugations.

d. Practice conjugation drills

Another way to reinforce the French verb conjugations you’re trying to learn is to practice conjugation drills. A conjugation drill can be as simple as writing out the conjugations of a few French verbs or writing out the French equivalents of a list of English verbs. You can also use online conjugation tools like this online grammar tool to practice the conjugations you need to master.

e. Learn conjugations in context

Finally, when you learn conjugations in context, you are associating the different forms of verbs with a real-world example. You can do this by constantly looking for examples of verb conjugations in French sentences and reading articles that highlight verb conjugations.
You can even create your own sentences as a way to practice conjugations in context. For example, you can create your own mini story that uses the same verb tense throughout. This will help you understand how each verb form is used in a sentence and will make it easier to remember them.

f. Use online conjugation tools

Finally, if you’re looking for an easy way to practice verb conjugations, you can use online conjugation tools. These tools are designed to help you quickly and easily find the correct French verb conjugation for any verb you enter.
While these tools can’t replace your need to memorize every single French verb conjugation, they can help you quickly and easily find what you are looking for when you need it.

g. Create your own flashcards

Flashcards are another great way to practice French verb conjugations. You can create them online or on paper by printing out images or words associated with the verb forms you need to learn.
When you study your flashcards, try to think of ways you can apply the conjugations you are learning. For example, when studying the French past subjunctive tense, you may want to write out a sentence in the present tense and then change the verb to the subjunctive tense.

h. Break down complex tenses

Although learning every single French verb conjugation can be helpful, it can also be overwhelming. Instead of focusing on learning every single tense and conjugation, try to focus on the tenses that you need the most.
For example, if you are trying to learn French for school, you will likely need to focus on the present tense regular and irregular verbs. If you are trying to learn French as a beginner, you will likely focus on the present tense. If you are a more advanced learner, you may need to focus on the future tense.

i. Take advantage of online resources

Finally, you can take advantage of online resources that help you learn French verb conjugations. There are many websites, apps, and other tools that can help you better understand verb tenses and forms.
You can use these tools to review the verb tenses you need to know. You can also use online tools to find example sentences that highlight common verb conjugations. You can also find online quizzes designed to test your knowledge of French verb conjugations and help you better understand them.

j. Use French verb conjugator apps

Finally, you can use French verb conjugator apps to help you learn verb conjugations. These apps can help you better understand the different verb forms and can help you practice them. You can find apps that are designed for all levels of learners, from beginner to advanced.
You can also find apps that are designed to help you learn French verb tenses and conjugations. These apps can be a helpful tool for any learner who is looking for a quick and easy way to review verb tenses.

French verb conjugation

FAQ

How do you conjugate verbs in French?

In French, verbs are conjugated according to the subject pronoun and the tense. For example, the regular verb “parler” (to speak) is conjugated like this:

Je parle (I speak)

Tu parles (You speak)

Il/Elle/On parle (They/One speaks)

What are the 20 verbs in French?

Here is a list of the 20 most commonly used French verbs, according to a study by the National Institute of Language and Linguistics (INALCO): avoir (to have), être (to be), faire (to do/make), dire (to say), aller (to go), prendre (to take), mettre (to put), venir (to come), voir (to see), falloir*(must, to be necessary) pouvoir*(can be able to) vouloir*(want, to wish) savoir*(know how to) croire*(believe) devoir*(owe, must) écri.

What are the 17 Mrs Vandertramp verbs?

The 17 Mrs Vandertramp verbs are a set of French verbs that are conjugated in a particular way. The name comes from the fictional character Mrs Vandertramp, who is always forgetting which verb conjugation to use.

The17 Mrs Vandertramp verbs are être, avoir, aller, faire, pouvoir, vouloir, devoir, rentrer, sortir , venir , mettre , prendre , savoir , laisser , choisir and des choisir.

What is Mrs Vandertramp?

Mrs. Vandertramp is a linguistic phenomenon that occurs when someone uses a series of French verbs in the same sentence, conjugating each one to agree with a different subject.

What are the 14 être verbs in French?

There are 14 être verbs in French. They are:

être, avoir, aller, faire, dire, voir, prendre, mettre, donner, pouvoir, suivre, laisser

What are the top 10 French verbs?

  1. To be – être
  2. To have – avoir
  3. To go – aller
  4. To do – faire
  5. To say – dire
  6. To see – voir
  7. To eat – manger
  8. To drink – boire
  9. To sleep- dormir
  10. To live- vivre

How do you memorize French verbs?

There are a few different ways that you can go about memorizing French verbs. One way is to create a chart with the verb conjugations and then study and review the chart regularly. Another way is to use flashcards or other similar tools to help you commit the verbs to memory.

Additionally, some people find it helpful to sing songs or write poems that include French verbs to remember them better. Whatever method you choose, just be sure to put in the time and effort required for memorization, and eventually, you will start to see results.

What are regular French verbs?

There are regular -ir verbs in French. To conjugate them, you take the verb stem (which is just the word without any endings) and add -issons, -ites, -t, -ont. For example, the stem of finir (to finish) is fini-, so the conjugated form for “we will finish” is finissons.