Lesson 1: Introduce Yourself

Learn how to introduce yourself in French, tell your name, your age and where you are from. You will also see how to ask simple questions in French, basic French conjugation, the verb to be (être), to have (avoir), to be called (s'appeler) and you will discover names of different nationalities in French. You will also have your first lesson on French phonetics: how to correctly pronounce je, j'ai, tu and d'où.

1. Dialogue : Je m’appelle … .

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Comment t’appelles-tu ?
– Je m’appelle José.
Es-tu espagnol ?
– Oui, je suis espagnol. Je viens de Barcelone.
Quel âge as-tu ?
– J’ai 21 ans. Et toi ?
Moi, je m’appelle Julien, j’ai 25 ans et je suis français.
Je viens de Bordeaux.


2. Notes

Comments on French grammar, vocabulary, phonetics.

[su_spoiler title=”Grammar: Basic Conjugation”]

A. Basic words of French: 

être, avoir, venir, s'appeler (more about the conjugation of the 2 most important verbs in this article) 

Congratulations! You have just discovered three very basic albeit important and frequent French verbs and one reflexive verb: a very common type of verb in Romance languages (French, Spanish, Italian, among others).
s’appeler = to be called
[wp-svg-icons icon=”point-right” wrap=”i”] Je m'appelle Jean. | Tu t'appelles Tom. | Elle s'appelle Anna. | Il s'appelle Julien.

être = to be
[wp-svg-icons icon=”point-right” wrap=”i”] Je suis espagnol. | Tu es français. | Elle / Il est de Paris. ( She / He is from Paris)

avoir = to have
[wp-svg-icons icon=”point-right” wrap=”i”] J’ai suis 21 ans. (Je + ai = J'ai). | Tu as une voiture. | Il / Elle a un passeport français.

venir = to come.
[wp-svg-icons icon=”warning” wrap=”i”] venir de = to come from venir à = to come to
[wp-svg-icons icon=”point-right” wrap=”i”] Je viens de Londres (London). Tu viens de Chine. Elle vient d'Allemagne (Germany)
[wp-svg-icons icon=”point-right” wrap=”i”] D'où viens-tu ? Where do you come from ? (: where)


[su_spoiler title=”Grammar: Asking Questions”]

Asking Questions in French

1. Inversion
Very formal and very polite way of asking questions.
It consists in inverting the subject and the verb.
1. Je suis espagnol. [wp-svg-icons icon=”point-right” wrap=”i”] Es-tu espagnol ? (Are you Spanish ?)*
2. Il est américain. [wp-svg-icons icon=”point-right” wrap=”i”] Est-il américain ? '(Are you American ?)
3. Il s'appelle Marc. [wp-svg-icons icon=”point-right” wrap=”i”] Comment s'appelletil ? ( [wp-svg-icons icon=”warning” wrap=”i”]  s'appelle-il e-i)
2. Est-ce que
A very popular way of asking questions in French. Used in everyday speech as well as in formal situations.
It consists in adding est-ce que before any affirmative statement.
Tu es français. Est-ce que tu es français ?
Vous avez rendez-vous. Est-ce que vous avez rendez-vous ?
3. Intonation
The easiest one and the most popular in spoken French is raising intonation.
Tu es anglais ?
Tu parles français ?
Tu viens de Bordeaux ? 


[su_spoiler title=”Dialogue Vocabulary”]

French English
s’appeler to be called / to have as a name …
être to be
avoir to have
venir to come
venir de to come from


[su_spoiler title=”Additional Vocabulary”]

Nationalities ( Les nationalités )

The names of nationalities in French are written in small letters, unlike in the English language !

French English
français French
anglais English
sénégalais Senegalese
marocain Moroccan
allemand German
russe Russian
américain American
espagnol Spanish
suédois Swedish


[su_spoiler title=”Phonetics”]


Je /ə/ , / J’ai  /ɛ/  



Tu /y/ , d’où  /u/  




3. Exercise: Translate into French

[su_spoiler title=”Click to show the explanation of the exercise”]

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[xyz-ihs snippet=”simple-introduce-yourself”]

4. Homework

  1. Read the dialogue aloud 3 times. Do it slowly, be careful with your pronunciation. You need to feel your facial and tongue muscles work. This will do miracles to your pronunciation and will make your speech more automatic and fluent.
  2. Basing yourself on the dialogue from this lesson, answer the following questions (your name, age, origin). Look up in a dictionary the words you don't know. Record your answers, upload to SoundCloud and drop you answer in the comment section !


    1. Comment t'appelles-tu ?
    2. Quel âge as-tu ?
    3. D'où viens-tu ?
    4. Quelle est ta nationalité ?