Beginning French Vocabulary

Beginning French Vocabulary

Essential French vocabulary lessons, lists, and sound files for beginning students, covering all the basics: greetings, colors, numbers, food, travel phrases, parts of the body, hobbies, transportation, weather, and more.

Most Common French Words

What are the most common French words?

Essential French - L'Essentiel

Even if you're just going to France for a week, you should know some survival French - a few essential words and phrases that you'll use over and over. Learn essential French vocabulary and phrases like do you speak English, yes, no, and I don't know.

Tips to Improve your French Vocabulary

Words, words, words! Languages are made up of words, and French is no exception. Here are all kinds of French vocabulary lessons, practice ideas, and tips to help you get better at learning and remembering French words.

Flash Cards

Studying endless lists of French vocabulary can get tedious. One way to make learning vocabulary more interesting and interactive is with the use of flash cards. This article has information and tips on creating French flash cards and putting them to good use.

French Gender Quiz

Have you been learning your nouns with gender?


Communicate with doctors, dentists, nurses, and pharmacists.


Planning to fly to France or another French-speaking country? This airport vocabulary will help you make reservations, buy tickets, negotiate the airport, and get on the plane.


Change money, payment methods, manage bank accounts.


The bare minimum of French vocabulary to help you get by: yes, no, speak slowly, I don't understand, and more.

Body Parts

Learn how to say the parts of the body in French, and click the links to hear them pronounced.


Memorize this French calendar vocabulary so that you can talk about the day of the week and the date in French.


Learn to talk about your favorite clothes in French.


All the colors of the rainbow, and then some.


Learn the French names for countries.


Essential French vocabulary and verbs for talking to a dentist.

Directions in French

Do you know where you're going and how to get there? This French vocabulary will help you give and understand directions.


Useful vocabulary for driving in France.

Emergency + Disaster

Memorize this list of French vocabulary for both medical and non-medical emergencies.

False cognates - Faux amis

Many words look alike in French and English but have different meanings.


It's always fun to talk about your family.

Food - La nourriture

Eating is fundamental and can also be highly enjoyable. Learn this French vocabulary related to food so that you can eat your favorite foods in France.

French Class Phrases

Essential phrases related to comprehension and typical classroom requests.

French Greetings - Les Salutations

Learn how to say hello, hi, how are you, and other ways to greet people in French.

French Terms in English

Déjà vu, je ne sais quoi, à la mode, and many more French terms commonly used in English.

French Wine Pronunciation

If you love French wine but hate ordering it, here's a page that can help. This list of French wines and related vocabulary includes sound files to help you pronounce the names of French wines.


Can you say desk, dresser, sink... in French?

Hobbies, Sports, Games

Talk about your pastimes in French.

French Home Vocabulary - À la maison

Learn French vocabulary related to the home, including rooms, standard features, and furnitures.


Make your hotel reservation, ask about services, and pay your bill.

French Introductions - Les Présentations

When you meet French speakers, you need to know how to introduce yourself and what to say when you are introduced. Here are some useful expressions related to French introductions - click the links to listen to each expression in French.

Languages + Nationalities

Some common languages and nationalities in French.

Love Language

They say French is the language of love - express yourself!


Happy, sad, worried, and more.

French Numbers - Nombres

Learn to count in French with French cardinal numbers.


Secretaries, office supplies...

On the phone

Useful French vocabulary for talking on the phone.

French Ordinal Numbers and Fractions

Ordinal numbers are used to express rank or position. French ordinal numbers are often taught at the same time as fractions because, beginning with "fifth," French ordinal numbers and fractions are the same word.


French vocab to describe yourself and everyone you know.

Physical Descriptions

Describe someone physically: height, weight, eye color, etc.

Politeness - French Phrases

When traveling in France, being polite is absolutely essential - be sure you know how to say please and thank you at the very least.

Quantities, Weights, and Measures

Needed for shopping and following recipes in French.

Reading a French Menu

Reading the menu in a French restaurant can be a little tricky, and not just due to language difficulties. There may be important differences between restaurants in France and in your own country, including what food is offered and how it is prepared. Here are some terms and tips to help you find your way around a French menu.

Renting a Car

Special French vocabulary for renting a car.

French Restaurant Vocabulary

Learn the French vocabulary that you need for restaurants.

French School Vocabulary

Learn some French vocabulary related to school, including different types of schools and school supplies.

Senses in French ~ Les sens

Learn French words and verbs related to the five senses, as well as some French vocabulary related to the sixth sense.

Spelling tricks

A table of common spelling equivalents between French and English - it'll help your vocabulary to grow by leaps and bounds!

Telling Time in French - L'Heure

Learn how to tell time in French. This multi-part lesson includes notes, sound files, and practice exercises to help master telling time in French.


Washing, putting on make-up, and shaving.


Means and methods of transportation.

Travel Vocabulary

Essential phrases to help you get around, including directions, accomodations, and more.

True cognates - Vrais amis

1,700 words that are spelled identically in French and English and have similar meanings. 

French Weather Vocabulary - Le Temps

Ready to make the ultimate small talk? Learn to chat about the weather in French in this lesson with sound files.

Before You Know It - Review of French Learning Software

Before You Know It is a software program that can help you learn and remember French vocabulary.

First French Words

First French Words, illustrated by David Melling and compiled by Neil Morris, is a perfect book for introducing children to French.




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