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HOW TO STUDY THE EXERCISES
ONE's purpose in learning a language is fourfold :
1. To understand the spoken language.
2. To speak fluently.
3. To read easily.
4. To write correctly.
To obtain the best results it is desirable to allow the pupils to see the spelling only after they have heard, understood, and repeated the sounds. Then, but only then, should they read, and afterwards write, the exercise.
This is how the work should proceed to give satisfactory results:
Exercises are divided in steps of five or six sentences each.
4. The pupil is then allowed to repeat the sentence.
6. Finally the teacher repeats the whole step at least
Each step in the exercise to be treated in the same
When the exercise is finished (in about thirty minutes), the teacher repeats the whole exercise once through, and then the students repeat the whole exercise of twenty to twentyfive sentences (without having yet seen the spelling).
Now that the exercise has been learnt by the ear and repeated, the students open their books. The teacher reads one sentence and the students repeat from their books; and thus through the exercise, sentence by sentence. Then the teacher reads slowly through the whole exercise alone; and lastly the pupils read the whole exercise alone.
The pupils write the exercise at home in a different form of the verb (past, future, etc.) as directed. (Pupils anxious to do good work copy the exercise once, and then, to make sure that they know the exercise by heart, they write it from memory in order to test their spelling.)
The rules and examples set for each lesson must be read twice by the teacher in French and the French learnt by the student as home-lesson.
Only one tense of the verb should be learnt in one lesson; but it must be learnt thoroughly. Here again, the teacher should teach the pronunciation thoroughly before the students learn the verbs. While learning the verbs, the pupil should always endeavour to have present in his mind (1) the action being performed, (2) the time when the action is performed, (3) the person performing the action. Otherwise it is mere parrot work.
Remarks about Health, the Weather, Meals, etc.
Ten minutes should be devoted (beginning of lesson) to the oral teaching of these sentences which must also be written and learnt by the pupils at home.
9. The neuter gender does not exist in French. noun is either masculine or feminine.
(The gender of nouns is to be learnt by the practice of conversation; by the ear, and not by the eye.)
FORMATION OF THE PLURAL
10. General Rule.-The plural of nouns is formed by adding s to the singular:
There are numerous exceptions to that general rule; we give the principal ones :
11. (1) Nouns ending in s, x, z remain unchanged:
12. (2) Nouns ending in au, eu, œu, ou take x:
13. (2a) The following nouns follow the general rule:
the landeau | the nail | the cuckoo | the cheat | the madman
the halter the hole the halfpenny | the bolt
14. (3) Nouns ending in al or ail change al or ail into
the coral, etc.
15. (3a) A few nouns ending in al or in ail follow the general rule and take s for the plural:
Le genre neutre n'existe pas en français. Un nom français est ou masculin ou féminin. (Le genre des noms doit être appris par la pratique de la conversation; par l'oreille et non par les yeux.)
FORMATION DU PLURIEL
Règle générale.--On forme le pluriel des noms en ajoutant s au singulier :
y a de nombreuses exceptions à cette règle générale ; nous donnons les principales :
(1) Les noms se terminant en s, X, z restent invariables :
(2) Les noms se terminant en au, eu, œu, ou prennent x:
(2 bis) Les noms suivants suivent la règle générale :
(3) Les noms se terminant en al ou ail changent al ou ail
les coraux, etc.
(3 bis) Quelques noms se terminant en al suivent la règle générale et prennent s au pluriel :
ou en ail
75. he is, she is, it is, they are are expressed in French by c'est or ce sont before a noun, pronoun, or superlative :
to whom from whom
(where) in which
77. which (m.s.) which (f.s.)
THE RELATIVE PRONOUN
I know that man who is singing
You know the child to whom I was speaking From whom have you received all this money?
A lady whom you know has come
The gentleman of whom you speak is here
The arm-chair in which you are
78. The words le, la, les of the above pronouns are of course subject to the same modifications as the article, and become du, de la, des or au, à la, aux, according to the sense.