How To Teach Your Child French (series)
Updated: Oct 15, 2020
4. French Learning Worksheets and Printables
The great thing about French learning worksheets is that you can use them not only to concentrate on a particular aspect of language learning but also incorporate it with fine motor skills such as mark making or cutting and pasting. You may use them as vocabulary builders or to focus on comprehension, for example.
You can find lots of free, fun French learning worksheets and printables online to help your child learn French. I suggest that you work around a theme as it provides a focus - you may like to simply choose a topic, such as colours, or base it around a story which interests your child and fits with your theme - for example, the story Brown Bear works with the themes of colours and animals. Be sure to check out our weekly blog series Exploitation de l'album to give you more ideas and suggested worksheets and activities! Depending on how much time you spend with your child doing French activities, I would recommend sticking to the same theme for at least a couple of weeks. Repetition assists with learning!
You will find that worksheets often focus on the skills of observation, (pre)writing, understanding the written word/language, numeracy, and discovering the world. The website Lulu la taupe has loads of free printables that you can download and print out at home to do with your child and the level is indicated. For guidance if you aren’t familiar with the French school system, the petite section (PS) is for ages 3 year old, moyenne section (MS) ages 4 years old, grande section (GS) 5 years old. For those in primary school, CP is 6 years old, 7 years is CE1, 8 years old is CE2, 9 years old is CM1, 10 years old is CM2.
There are also many activity books available for purchase, and most of them come with stickers to use in the activities which is an added bonus - everyone likes stickers! You will find the cahier maternelle (for under fives) or cahier de vacances (for older children). Again, the appropriate age range will be indicated by the French school system level. If you have older children who are non-native speakers, it’s a good idea to start with lower level material as these resources are aimed at native language speakers. I like the series by Nathan - they make high quality French learning resources.
Alternatively, if you struggle to navigate a French website or prefer to use material that has specifically been designed for learners of French as a foreign language, you can check out Twinkl, TeachersPayTeachers or TES for French learning worksheets. Most of these sites allow you to search by age and subject, and you will find a mix of downloadable free and paid-for resources.
Another simple idea is to use colouring sheets - you will find loads of free colouring sheets on the internet with a quick search. Pick a subject that is of interest to your child, whether that be dinosaurs, princesses or superheroes. Younger children may not have the vocabulary yet, but they will be able to respond through their actions - for example, you could ask if they prefer to colour the sun yellow or orange, and show the crayons, repeating the colour as you show each one. Your child will select the one they prefer, and you can reinforce their choice by stating the colour that they have chosen. You may find our free colours printable helpful. Older children can be encouraged to repeat the colour or the whole phrase in French.
You can also use colouring sheets to introduce vocabulary. The image will provide a point of conversation and allow you to contextualise the language, as well as provide a visual which assists with language learning. You might like to even label the picture with French vocabulary while talking about it with your child.
If you've found these tips useful or have any other suggestions, please leave a comment below!