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French Verb Blitz

French Verb Blitz is a free verb conjugation app for Apple and Android devices. It could be used by very good ntermediate (GCSE) or advanced pupils wishing to build up speedy recall of verb forms in a wide range of tenses (e.g. conditional perfect is included). The verbs chosen are a bit on the obscure side for GCSE at times and the emphasis in some of the games is definitely on speedy recall rather than just knowledge itself.

There are seven sections to the app in all, one a set of verb tables covering all tenses, one being a Performance Checker (showing you how you have done in a league table of verbs), the rest being familiar games. These are called Infinitive Quiz (translation), Snap (fast spotting of translation matches), Grid (completing a grid by matching verb forms with their translations), Conjugation Quiz (translation) and Gapfill (spellings). In addition you can choose the tenses to focus on in Settings.

The interface is colourful, clear and ungimmicky, well-suited to phones. The content is not entirely accurate, however. In my five minutes of play I cam across one error (nous produions, rather than nous produisons). That may have been an isolated aberration.

As usual with such games you and your students will either like it or find it a bit of a time-waster. Verb conjugation tables and games have never appealed to me very much, concerned as they are isolated language forms devoid of meaningful context. You may have some keen students who would enjoy testing themselves using the app. Its greatest appeal may lie with A-level students wishing to do some quick revision, especially given the range of verbs and tenses covered. You would not recommend the app to lower-achieving GCSE pupils.

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