Beginning in French – Basic grammar rules in French

 1) Gender of a noun

Every noun in French is ‘gendered’ , it is either a masculin or feminin. Some general rules can help you determine if a noun is feminin or masculine; ex: nouns ending with ‘e’ and ‘tion’ are general  feminin , but beware of multiple exceptions! (see in further lesson) .


2) Articles

Every noun in French must be preceded by an article (article défini ou indéfinis) that takes the gender of the noun.

Article défini: THE (english) — LE or LA (french)

EX: The girl —> LA fille (feminin)

The boy —> LE garçon (masculin)

Article indéfinis:  A (english) — UN ou UNE (french)

EX: A woman—> UNE femme (feminin)

A man —> UN homme (masculin)


3) Plural

Forming plural in French is usually done by adding an ‘S’ at the end of the noun. There are several exceptions for which plural is formed by adding X, or changing it to ‘AUX’ .

Articles in the plural form are LES (définis) or DES (indéfinis)

EX: The girls —> Les filles    //   Girls —> Des filles

The boys —> Les garçons  //  Boys —> Des garçons

A horse —> Un cheval  // Horses —> Des chevaux


4) Conjugating verbs

Verbs need to be conjugated for each subject.

Ex:  verb Manger (to eat)  –> Je mange, Tu manges, Il /Elle mange,  nous mangeons, vous manges, ils /elles mangent

See list of most used verbs in French
Use online conjugator to find proper verb form


5) Exercises