French Beginner Sample – Interrogatives

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LEÇON 1  / Beginner

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INTERROGATIVES

Interrogatives are words used to ask questions. These words help you to zero in on the information you need.

1. How to ask questions with a yes/no answer.

It is very easy to ask a question in French. Simply put the phraseest-ce que in front of a statement.

example

EXAMPLES

Est-ce que tu aimes le chocolat?
–Oui.
Do you like chocolate?
–Yes!

Est-ce qu’ils vendent des croissants?
–Non.
Do they sell croissants?
–No.

2. How to seek information with interrogative expressions.

Interrogative expressions are found before  est-ce que in a question.

Here are the most common interrogative expressions:

example

EXAMPLES

est-ce que tu habites?
Where do you live?

Quand est-ce que vous travaillez?
When do you work?

Pourquoi est-ce qu’ils rougissent?
Why do they blush?

Combien d’heures est-ce que tu travailles?
How many hours do you work?

Comment est-ce qu’elle lave le crocodile?
How does she wash the crocodile?

3. How to say “who,” “whom,” and “what.”

When the subject is a person, use Qui est-ce qui?

example

EXAMPLE

Qui est-ce qui entre dans la classe?
–Marie entre dans la classe
.
Who enters the class?
–Mary enters the class.

When the subject is a thing, use Qu’est-ce qui?

example

EXAMPLE

Qu’est-ce qui passe à la télévision ce soir?
 American Idol.
What’s on TV tonight?
American idol.

When the object is a person, use Qui est-ce que?

example

EXAMPLE

Qui est-ce que tu aimes?
–J’aime le professeur de français.
Whom do you like?
–I like the French teacher.

When the object is a thing, use Qu’est-ce que?

example

EXAMPLE

Qu’est-ce que vous préparez?
–Nous préparons le dîner.
What are you preparing?
–We are preparing dinner.