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A parallel text and exercises for beginners

Here is a text and translation I wrote for near-beginners, one of 20 on the Y7 page of frenchteacher.net. Help yourself if you think it would be useful.

The thinking behind these is to provide some interesting comprehensible input to beginners, with the English translation compensating for the relative difficulty of the source text. You would ideally present the texts side by side and get pupils to closely compare each version. Pupils learn how to make use of cognates and learn some new vocabulary along the way. If it is high-frequency enough to merit revision this could be done in a subsequent lesson.

Les dauphins

Les dauphins sont des mammifères marins qui sont liés aux baleines et aux marsouins. Un mammifère marin est celui qui vit dans l'eau. Les dauphins se trouvent partout dans les océans de la planète et dans les rivières et les marais aussi.

Les dauphins sont carnivores (mangeurs de viande) et mangent des poissons, des calmars et d’autres animaux marins. Ils nagent souvent ensemble dans des groupes appelés «pods». On pense qu’ils ont une acuité visuelle et auditive remarquables, mais n'ont pas un sens de l'odorat.

Les dauphins ont différentes tailles. Certains sont plus petits que la personne moyenne, mais d'autres, comme l'orque, mesurent 9 mètres de long, soit plus de cinq fois plus long qu’une personne moyenne. Les dauphins sont considérés comme très intelligents et communiquent avec des clics et des sifflets. Tous les dauphins sont des nageurs puissants.

Avez-vous déjà vu un dauphin? Des groupes de dauphins peuvent être vus dansant dans les vagues à proximité de la côte.



Dolphins

Dolphins are marine mammals that are related to whales and porpoises. A marine mammal is one that lives in the water. Dolphins are found all over the world’s oceans as well as in rivers and marshes.

Dolphins are carnivores (meat-eaters) and eat fish, squid and other marine life They often swim together in groups called “pods.” They are thought to have powerful eyesight and hearing, but do not have a sense of smell.

Dolphins come in different sizes. Some are smaller than the average person, but others, such as the orca, are 9 metres long, or more than five times as long as the average person. Dolphins are thought to be very intelligent and communicate with each other using clicks and whistles. All dolphins are powerful swimmers.

Have you ever seen a dolphin? Groups of dolphins can often be seen bobbing in and out of waves close to the shoreline.


Which of these sentences are true?

1.​ Les dauphins sont des poissons.

2.​ Les dauphins sont des mammifères marins.

3.​ Un mammifère marin vit dans l’océan par exemple.

4.​ Les dauphins mangent de la viande.

5.​ Les dauphins sont végétariens.

6.​ Ils mangent des animaux marins.

7.​ Ils vivent souvent dans des groupes.

8.​ Ils ont une vue excellente.

9.​ Tous les dauphins sont énormes.

10.​ L’orque mesure 9 mètres de long.

11.​ Les dauphins sont stupides.

12.​ Ils communiquent en français.

13.​ Les dauphins nagent très bien.

14.​ Il est possible d’observer des dauphins près de la côte.



Highlight in the French article any words whose meaning you could have guessed without help. These are called COGNATES. They make French a relatively easy language to learn, like German, Spanish or Italian too.



Complete this word list

French​ English

mammifère​
baleine​
marsouin​
eau​
partout​​
marais​
calmar​
ils nagent​
sifflets​
vagues​



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