LOST IN A SEA OF WORDS! FRENCH VOCABULARY
LOST IN A SEA OF WORDS!
Students at this stage of the year usually find themselves lost in a sea of words. They have pages and pages of vocabulary, without a real knowledge of how to use them correctly. The first thing that students need to realise, is that the leaving cert French exam is naturally split into themes. (Please note that themes can vary, and do not, in any way, reflect what will be on the paper in 2018). It is important to realise that with all of these themes, it is the opinion of young people that is sought.
You have about 12 recurring themes in the exam from year to year:
- Social Media
- French Language & Culture
- Social problems
- Equality & Inequality
- Environmental issues
Each of these themes branch into sub-themes. For example, under the theme of Environmental issues, you have:
Types of Pollution
Greener methods of transport
Under the theme of Politics, you might have:
The right to vote
Democracy v’s dictatorship
War & Conflict
Brexit & Ireland
Of course, a lot of the sub-themes fit into more than one general theme. Addiction could be a question that would fit into either social issues or health. Global warming could be asked in an economic, environmental or social context. It really should not matter how a question is phrased in the leaving cert. Students are expected to have the vocabulary needed to deal with any type of question.
How can they do this?
Very simply! Students should take a look at their copies and figure out where vocabulary naturally fits in. There are certain words that can only be used for particular written pieces, but a lot of vocabulary accumulated, can be used in a number of situations. Take the word “La crise” for example. The word “Crise” meaning crisis, can express any number of situations:
La crise économique – The economic crisis
La crise environmentale – The environmental crisis
La crise financière – The financial crisis
La crise morale – The moral crisis
La crise de la dette – The debt crisis
Subscribed users of French Notes have unlimited access to over 60 sample opinion pieces, as well as comprehensive lists of vocabulary, broken down into themes. For information on our plans, please follow the link below: https://frenchnotes.ie/subscriptions/
The trick to writing well in French is a two-pronged affair. Firstly you must have an excellent handle on your verbs and secondly, you must be able to adapt learnt vocabulary. The real challenge of learning a language at senior level, is that you could be asked to write about absolutely anything. This should not fill students with dread! If you study in a clever manner, you will be absolutely fine. I have been running revision workshops over the last year, and I have noticed that the students are writing much more fluidly than at the beginning of the year. They are doing so, because they are working on a specific theme, and they have noticed how vocabulary and phrases are re-occurring the whole time.
FRENCH LEAVING CERT REVISION COURSES
If you would be interested in attending one of our French Leaving Cert Revision courses, please follow the link below for more information. All of our monthly courses take place from September to May and are held in Mary Immaculate College, Limerick. Our Courses begin at 1pm and ends at 5pm. The cost is €60 and includes a 30 page booklet with exclusive French Notes content. During our revision courses, students learn how to write opinion pieces, Diary entries and/or the narrative (récit), learn active listening methodology, practice speaking and reading French comprehensions. They also do Translation exercises and study a specific area of grammar.
As a typical 17 or 18 year old, examiners know that you do not have a limitless supply of words. Therefore, I suggest that you get out your copies and start putting your vocabulary into themes.
Here is a list of vocabulary from our website, which is on the theme of the Economy. This is part 1 of 3 on the topic of the economy. Subscribed members have access to all three. I want you to read through this list of words and pick out suitable themes for each word. It takes a bit of time to get into, but you will be surprised (pleasantly) to find that a lot of the vocabulary can be used again and again and again.
Also, please find this link to a selection of free resources for the Leaving cert and Junior cert french exams
|Une crise||A crisis||Oone creez|
|Les enjeux||The stakes||Lays on-juh|
|Le chômage||Unemployment||Le sho-maje|
|La société||Society||La so-see-eh-tay|
|La production||Production||La pro-ducks-yon|
|La distribution||The distribution||La diss-trib-boose-yon|
|La consommation||The consumption||La con-so-mass-yon|
|Un démarrage||A kick off||An de-mar-aje|
|La croissance||Growth||La cross-sonse|
|Les attentes||Expectations||Lays ah-tont|
|Être à la traîne||To lag behind||Etr a-la-tren|
|La zone euro||The euro zone||La zone oo-ro|
|La conjoncture mondiale||The global situation||La con-junk-tewer mon-dee-al|
|Les pays émergents||Emerging countries||Lay payee em-mer-jon|
|Dans une moindre mesure||To a lesser extent||Dons-oone moin-dreh mez-zure|
|Une reprise||A recovery||Oone re-preeze|
|Les exportations||Exports||Lays ex-por-tass-yon|
|Se creuser||To widen||Se cruz-zay|
|Le renouveau||The renewal||Le reh-new-vo|
|Les entreprises||Companies||Lays on-tre-preeze|
|Peiner à||To struggle to||Pen-ay ah|