Mastering Verb Conjugations

Learn, practice, remember French verb conjugations

French verb conjugation practice
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One of the first things you discover when you start learning French is the concept of verb conjugations. While they do exist in English,* they are minimal, and the mountain of French conjugations you have to learn in the present tense** can be overwhelming – and that’s just when you’re in the classroom with plenty of time to think about the correct response. Once you start talking to people in the real world, trying to figure out the appropriate verb conjugation can leave you speechless – literally. So what’s the solution? Learn, then practice, practice, practice!

I. Learn Verb Conjugations

Fisrt things first: learn the French verb conjugations. Here are some lessons and resources that will help.

II. Practice Verb Conjugations

Now that you’ve studied the conjugations, you’re ready to start practicing them to see if you’ve really learned them. There’s no magic formula that will help you do this, but there are two key elements:

  1. The more you practice, the more conjugations will become ready accessible in your mind, allowing you to find the right one when speaking without having to search for it. I highly recommend at least a few minutes of practice every single day until you start noticing that they are coming to you more easily.
  2. Variety is the spice of life. If you always practice the same way, you’re bound to get bored. The only way to keep verb conjugation practice from becoming a chore is to do different kinds of activities.

So with that in mind, here are some ideas to help you work on remembering your French verb conjugations.

Write Verb Tables

You’ve seen plenty of French verb tables, now it’s time to create your own. Download a PDF template,*** print a few copies, and start conjugating. You have a number of different options here:

  1. To master a particular verb in a specific tense, go ahead and fill out the whole sheet with those conjugations, over and over.
  2. Conjugate a single verb into different tenses.
  3. Write out the conjugations for 8 different verbs in the same tense.
  4. Mix and match!

After you’re done writing, try reading out loud, to help make the connection between written and spoken French. Then do it all again with another set of verbs or tenses.

If you don’t have a printer, check out Whita Design’s French Verb Conjugation Workbook, which is full of blank verb tables.
Buy it:  |

Write Something Meaningful

Make a to do list, keep a journal, compose a poem, draft a short story … just write something – anything – that gives you a reason to practice using verbs.

Make Flashcards

Find some index cards or cut paper into squares – write a subject pronoun and verb in the infinitive (e.g., nousaller) on one side, and the conjugation on the other (allons). Now you can test yourself by looking at either side and trying to remember what the other side says. Flashcards are a nice, portable option when you can’t or don’t want to use your phone. If that’s not an issue, you can create online flashcards.

Read and Speak and Write

When reading in French, whether an article, book, social media, or lesson, keep an eye out for verbs that you need to practice – and do it! Read the subject and verb out loud, then conjugate it for the other subject pronouns. And/or conjugate it into other tenses. And/or write them out. The point is to find a few extra minutes of verb conjugation practice at any opportunity.

III. Test Yourself

Put your French verb conjugations to the test at Progress with Lawless French – here are some study lists to help you get started:

IV. Verb Workbooks

If you want to get really serious, check out these workbooks filled with endless verb conjugation exercises.

French Verb Drills, by R. de Roussy de Sales
Buy it:  |

French Verb Workbook, by Jeffrey T Chamberlain PhD, Lara Finklea
Buy it:  |

Practice Makes Perfect: French Verb Tenses, by Trudie Booth
Buy it:  |

The Ultimate French Verb Review and Practice, by David M Stillman, Ronni L Gordon
Buy it:  |


If you click one of these links and make a purchase, I may earn a commission: Ad and Affiliate Disclosure

* The best example of English conjugations is the verb be which has three present tense conjugations:

  1. I am
  2. you/we/they are
  3. he/she/it is

** Not to mention all the other French tenses and moods!

*** Verb conjugation templates

Click to download a PDF that you can print and fill out.

Paper size Letter size | 8 x 11" A4 | 210 x 297 mm
  Multiple verbs in one tense One verb in multiple tenses
  Multiple verbs in one tense One verb in multiple tenses

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Practice conjugating French verbs

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