Learning French doesn't have to be all hard study — it can be fun, too. This is especially important for children learning French, but young adult or even adult learners may learn more quickly by playing games that help improve their French. There's a wide range of games available that can help you, ranging from video games to French versions of games you'll be familiar with. Here are a few.
French Versions of Familiar Games
Obviously, French versions of any word-based games are likely to help you use French more naturally. Scrabble is great for this — you can play it with a standard English-language set, or else you can get a French-language version, where the proportions of tiles will be more specifically geared to French vocabulary. Alternatively, if you want a game you can play without special equipment, the classic paper-and-pen game Hangman can be played in French as easily as in English. Alternatively, you could find French crosswords or word searches, or simply improvise role-plays.
French Board Games
Besides Scrabble, there are other familiar board games than come in French versions. For example, there's a version of Monopoly that's in French and based on Paris, allowing you not only to practice your language but also to learn about the French capital. There are also games specifically based on French vocabulary. These range from the simple, like Spot It!, to more complex games, such as Djam. There are many different types of board game, and French games provide just as wide a range as English-language ones. If you like fantasy role-playing, for instance, you can play Le Donjon de Naheulbeuk, while Jarjais is set during the French Revolution, allowing you to learn about a pivotal period in French history along with the language.
Online French Games
Young people especially may relate better to games online than to board games, and there are plenty of options. Several teaching-based options are available, such as this spelling game. Alternatively, simply playing your favourite video games in French will give you plenty of language practice while you're having fun. For many of the most popular games (e.g. The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker, Assassin's Creed: Unity, Minecraft) you simply need to change your language settings to French, although for World of Warcraft you have to buy the French-language version. Some games, however, are particularly speech heavy, which makes the French versions an excellent tool for learning through play. Indigo Prophecy and Heavy Rain are two that are excellent for this purpose.
Party Games in French
Many of the enduringly popular party games are language based, and in many cases French versions exist. If not, they're easy to translate into French. Qui Suis Je?,Maman, veux-tu?andSabine a dit are French versions of Who Am I?, Mother, May I?andSimon Says respectively, all of which challenge you to use your French vocabulary. At the same time, playing games like Scattergories or Trivia in French are ideal for practice.
Useful games can come in all types — why not include French songs in a Karaoke session, for example? If you're a student, parent or tutor who wants to know more about using games to help in learning French, register with TutorExtra for more resources.