French Crossword Puzzles as a Tool for Self-Taught Students
With the rise of self-guided language programs, blogs, and other resources, it’s clear that more and more people want to learn a language on their own time in their own way. Self-taught language learners everywhere make their own flashcards, solve worksheets, and find other creative ways to develop their language skills. Adding French crossword puzzles made at Crossword Hobbyist to the mix will be great fun and will enhance your learning.
All students begin with basic vocabulary. A vocabulary-based French crossword puzzle might be as simple as making a French word the clue and the English definition the answer. It’s certainly a lot more fun than the standard flashcard! This is how most self-taught French students use French crossword puzzles to enhance their learning. Test your skills now with the crossword puzzle below.
While most language learners will make vocabulary puzzles, the most interactive and interdisciplinary way to make a French crossword puzzle is to make puzzles based on conversations. This kind of crossword will take a couple of forms for the self-taught student.
Basic conversation crosswords will consist of greetings and small talk about the weather. Take the words you’ve gathered from whatever materials you’re using and add them to the crossword puzzle maker. The crossword can work as a direct substitute for a “fill-in-the-blank” style exercise by leaving a word out of a sentence. Or, the clues might give a sentence, and the answer would give your appropriate response. The puzzle below demonstrates basic French conversation as a direct translation exercise.
Conversations in Listening Exercises
If you have listening tools at your disposal, like an interview in French found on YouTube, listen to the exercise carefully to make your French crossword puzzles. Then come back to the exercise a few days later to answer the questions. It’ll require focused listening, along with good writing skills to come up with clues and answers. This exercise also works well if you have a study group, or a language-learning buddy so you can trade puzzles.
This doesn’t necessarily refer to topics of a personal nature. Instead, most people who self-study a language have personal goals. Maybe they want to better converse with in-laws. Perhaps they’re taking an extended trip to France.
Maybe you want to watch French cooking shows to make the perfect Bouillabaisse.
Whatever your reasons may be, focus your French crossword puzzles on your personal learning goals.
The beauty of learning a language on your own is you can focus on your particular goals. Sure, every language student needs to learn the rules of grammar, but if you want to focus on reading so you can read Le Monde, then, by all means, do so! If culture is important to you for travels, then concentrate on related words.
In other words, define what you hope to achieve, then make a crossword puzzle that meets those goals to a T. If you’d like to do so with word searches as well, French word searches can help develop your vocabulary, too.
Kristen Seikaly used her artistic background, research skills, and love for the internet to launch her first blog, Operaversity. Now she uses the skills to connect teachers, parents, and game enthusiasts with Crossword Hobbyist and My Word Search. She studied music at the University of Michigan, and now lives in Philadelphia.