These Are the Surprising Differences Between Christmas in France and Abroad

French people tend to exchange gifts on the night of Christmas Eve (le réveillon (de Noël)), rather than on Christmas Day (Noël/le jour de Noël.)

The holiday season is upon us, which means you might be wondering how to wish the French-speakers (and/or fellow French students) you know, “Happy Holidays” in French. Or maybe, as you go about celebrating your own culture’s traditions, you’re wondering what the winter holidays are like in France. Is what you’ve learned in French class …

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What you need to know before you wish someone a happy birthday in French

happy birthday

There are some cultural details we take for granted. If you’ve ever celebrated classmates’ birthdays in your French class, or seen a French movie or TV show where there was a birthday, you might think you’ve got French birthday traditions down pat. Then there may come a day when you’re invited to a French person’s …

READ LESSONWhat you need to know before you wish someone a happy birthday in French

Quoi: The Hidden Meanings of the Versatile French Word

quoi meaning

There are some words that just seem perfect. Quoi isn’t the prettiest word in French – at least not in my opinion – but when it comes to using it to express astonishment or outrage, there is nothing more satisfying. Quoi?! – it makes me think of an outraged cartoon bird honking in disbelief.  That …

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Are you sleeping? Are you sleeping? 16 phrases locals use to talk about sleep in French

sleep in french

Long before I started learning French, I’d sing the line, Dormez-vous, dormez-vous? (Are you sleeping, are you sleeping?) from the international hit nursery rhyme “Frère Jacques”. Maybe you did the same thing. Whether it’s the first French verb you ever uttered, or you’ve learned it more recently, let’s delve into dormir. Dormir is the main …

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Here Are 12 Awesome French Cartoons to Improve Your French

when you’re learning a language or trying to maintain your listening skills, cartoons can be a truly useful resource

Recently, a friend asked me the best thing to watch to practice his English listening skills. He was surprised when I suggested Peppa Pig. We don’t tend to take cartoons very seriously, especially ones made for younger kids. But when you’re learning a language or trying to maintain your listening skills, they can be a …

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7 Beautiful and Underappreciated Places to Visit in France

places to visit in France

Are you headed to France this year, or have you already been? Here in the world’s top tourist destination, most visitors make a beeline for Paris, Mont-Saint-Michel, or the French Riviera. These are all understandable choices — especially and always Paris, which I think is the best city in the world, for what it’s worth.  …

READ LESSON7 Beautiful and Underappreciated Places to Visit in France