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When we think about what countries speak French, France probably pops up first in your mind. Makes sense - the clue is in the name! However, French is spoken in over 50 countries, and one of those is Canada, where it’s an official language.
What is French Canadian? Well, it’s technically the same language, but most people would argue that the French Canadian language is distinct, because of the accent and expressions they use. In Canada, French is mostly spoken in Quebec, a region in the east of Canada.
If you are looking to learn Canadian French online, a baseline in the French language will get you started, so you can then go on to focus on learning Quebec French.
The French Canadian language has its own very special flavour to it. Aside from a very distinctive accent, French Canadian also has its own collection of phrases that are unique to French from Canada.
Canadian French is spoken by over 7 million people as a native language, which is about 20% of the population of Canada. That’s a lot of people! In fact, Canada is the country with the largest number of French speakers, after France.
Canadian French, as with French in many other countries, is not uniform across Canada, either. There are a number of different variations and dialects you might hear, with the main ones being Laurentian and Acadian.
For those wanting to learn Canadian French, it’s helpful to know what is French Canadian and how it can be distinguished from French spoken in other parts of the world.
If you were to learn Quebec French online, the best way to get started as a beginner is to nail the basics of the French language, which Memrise can help you do.
If you’re eager to learn Canadian French, a good place to begin would be some basic phrases. Aim for phrases that are useful and practical, that you can use right away, e.g. good morning in French Canadian (it’s “bon matin”).
By learning real-life, useable phrases, you can start applying what you’ve learnt right away, and maybe even have a little interaction in the language! That will boost your confidence in a major way. As a kickstarter to learning Quebec French online, here are some key French Canadian phrases and words that are unique to Canada, and examples of what they would be in “French” French.
In Canada, the phrases “mon chum” and “ma blonde” mean “my boyfriend” and “my girlfriend”. In France, they would be “mon petit ami/ma petite amie”.
“Ça a pas d’allure” in Canada means “it doesn’t make sense”. The same phrase in France has a completely different meaning: “it looks a mess”! The actual French equivalent for “ça a pas d’allure” in France would be “ça n’a pas de sens”.
“Attache ta tuque!” in Canada means “get ready!”. The literal translation is “put on your winter hat!”. In France, this expression doesn’t exist, and you would more likely say “prépare-toi!”.
That’s just a taster of the richness of Canadian French! However, if you are looking to really learn the language, get yourself a good foundation in the French language. This will serve you no matter which variant of French you are interested in mastering in the long run!
The French Canadian language is a rich and charming variant of the French language. No wonder you want to learn Quebec French online!
Get a head start on learning Canadian French, with Memrise’s French courses. You will learn essential vocabulary and expressions that will steadily build your confidence in the language. Then you’ll be able to start communicating in whatever countries that speak French!
French Canadian phrases will come more naturally to you once you get a hold of the basic mechanics of the language. With Memrise, you’ll learn the most useful things first, and build on your knowledge step by step.
You can practise your pronunciation, listening skills and even if you suddenly find yourself without internet, you can keep learning with offline mode! Spice things up with Speed Review, and set daily learning goals and reminders, to make sure you stay motivated and on track.
Our award-winning tech is informed by cognitive science and cutting-edge research into language acquisition. It knows what you are due to review, which words and phrases to test you on, and when, so you can learn French far quicker than you could in the classroom.
Join over 35 million people learning a language on Memrise. Download the Memrise app or register online for free, for the best way to learn French whenever or wherever, online or offline.