A French lesson and a joke

March 29, 2008 at 6:27 am 14 comments

My children’s elementary school offers three academic programs: the English program, the French Immersion program, and the Ukranian Bilingual Program.  The kids in the French Immersion program learn their subjects in French.  The ones in the Ukrainian program learn theirs in Ukrainian (or maybe English too because it’s a bilingual program.  I don’t really know.)  The ones in the English program learn theirs in English.  All my three kids are/were in the English programs.  But since French is one of the official languages of Canada, they get to learn French starting fourth grade.   And it’s a required course until they finish high school.

I’ve always asked my two older boys to teach me French, how to say the words properly, but they give up on me easily.  Because French is not easy to say.  Well, at least for me.  The written word is not how you would read it.  But my youngest one, who is now in fourth grade and who is ever so sweet, is always eager to teach me.  Well, maybe not always.  But he taught me how to count one to ten in French.  Just look at this list and compare the spelling to the pronunciation.  And if you know French, please feel free to correct me. 

English            French                 Pronunciation

one                   un                         uhn
two                  deux                     duh
three               trois                      twa
four                 quatre                  cat
five                  cinq                      sank
six                   six                         sees
seven              sept                      sit
eight               huit                       wheat
nine                neuf                      nuf
ten                 dix                         dis
Here’s a joke that a French-Canadian girl at work told me a few years back.  I’ve forgotten about it until my youngest son told me the same joke.
A joke:  One two three cat
Question: There are two cats, an English cat and a French cat, in a contest to swim. The English cat is called the One two three cat, and the French cat is called the Un deux trois cat.  Who won?
Answer: The English cat because

the French cat sank!

Un deux trois quatre cinq.
Un deux trois cat sank.



Entry filed under: Detour.

Good Friday, bad Friday Spring melt down

14 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Kyels  |  March 29, 2008 at 11:28 am

    Yes, I do agree. It’s not easy to pronounce the words in French. But it’s good to learn!


  • 2. eric aka senor enrique  |  March 29, 2008 at 11:59 pm

    I think your kids are fortunate to have French classes. Wish I’ve learned to speak it.

    Trust your Easter was a good one 🙂

  • 3. haze  |  March 31, 2008 at 2:01 am

    Right French is the second language there and that’s a great advantage for your kids. You know what, I speak French ( a little) but I still learn a lot from my kids ages 5 and 3 yrs old. I never thought that I could speak other language and I confirm French is one of the difficult because when they right it’s not the same way to pronounce the word. It’s confusing 😦 !

    If I did learn why can’t you 😀 ! All we need is to have an interest and patience. Goodluck Niceheart and kids !

  • 4. bw  |  March 31, 2008 at 12:35 pm

    I’d like to learn French but my guts tells me I’d be more productive with Spanish 🙂 Besides, Spanish is much easier than French. One one hand, I feel like I’m betraying the country by not opting for French 🙂

    There is no compelling reason for me to learn French other than the company I work for has a couple of offices in Montreal which I visit every now and then. My colleagues there speak English very well anyways. Montreal is about 5 hours away. Although most Montrealers speak English it will be nice to be able to converse in French when you’re in town. But as soon as you get deeper into Quebec, you’ll find a lot of people don’t speak English that well.

    As they say, you’d be proficient if you speak the language often. So if I ever learn the language, my problem is to find a Francophone to practice the conversation often which means that I have to call our office in Montreal every now and then to practice it 🙂 Believe me, the compulsion to learn French is still in my mind 🙂

  • 5. haze  |  April 1, 2008 at 12:05 pm

    Ooopps it’s me again let me rephrase that “French is one of the difficult language because when they write it’s not the same way to pronounce the word”. LOL mali-mali iba na talaga nagkaka edad !

  • 6. Abaniko  |  April 2, 2008 at 8:05 am

    And I suppose the English cat was happy because she had five rounds of six. You know what I mean. Corny.

  • 7. annamanila  |  April 4, 2008 at 3:53 am

    Spanish na lang, hwag na lang French. 🙂

    I remember when I was growing up, there was this popular french perfume called eclat. It meant splendor.

    That’s for laughs too and also corny. haha

  • 8. Gypsy  |  April 5, 2008 at 5:06 pm

    Hehe…cute joke! Do your kids know the French children’s song A la Claire Fontaine? I heard it in “The Painted Veil” — it is such a beautiful song!!

  • 9. Major Tom  |  April 6, 2008 at 3:02 am

    Ha..ha..Very nice and nifty joke. I like this kind of joke. It’s celebral.

    In the university I am teaching right now, I had once proposed that we opened up a full language center or department to teach as varied language as French, German and Nipponggo. I believe that any academic institution worth it’s name should have interest in language development.

    So far, my superior is warm to the idea.

  • 10. ann  |  April 6, 2008 at 5:32 pm

    Basahin pa lang hirap na, pronunciation pa.

  • 11. Preschool Cincinnati  |  May 8, 2008 at 10:15 pm

    French is so hard to learn. All of the words are difficult o pronounce I prefer to learn Japanese language than French.

  • 12. Cincinnati Home Builders  |  May 8, 2008 at 10:25 pm

    French. I hate the language. Hirap e pronounce. Back in 60’s or 80’s my Spanish subject daw sa mga school dito sa Pilipinas? Bakit wala na ngayon?

  • 13. Cincinnati Retirement Planning  |  May 9, 2008 at 12:34 am

    I love French food. Specially French fries. :p But, I kinda don’t dig their language. It so hard to pronounce.

  • 14. Smallest wonder  |  August 8, 2017 at 7:54 am

    Smallest wonder

    A French lesson and a joke | Journey to Honeyville


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