french school

29- Open questions in French (les questions ouvertes en français)

OPEN QUESTIONS, using the question words: With an open question, you need to give a precise answer, different from "yes" or "no". When using this type of question, you need an interrogative word to ask for specific information. Interrogative words: Qui, que, quand, combien, pourquoi, où, comment (who, what, when, how much, why, where, how). You can use, in many cases, but not all, the three types of questions with interrogative words: intonation, "est-ce que" and inversion. QUI (WHO) : With intonation: You need to insert the interrogative word QUI (WHO) in the sentence, and raise your voice when asking the question : Who are you calling ? Tu appelles qui ? // You can also reverse: Qui appelles-tu ? // Or use “est-ce-que” : Qui est-ce que tu appelles ? ATTENTION: You can’t use the reverse technique when “qui” is the subject of the question. ex: Qui vient-ce soir ? You can’t ask “Vient-qui ce soir” ? It doesn’t work in French ! Où (WHERE) : In general, we use Où (WHERE) at the beginning or at the end of the sentence in a question with intonation. ex: “Where is she going?” : Où va-t-elle? Où est-ce qu’elle va? Elle va où? ATTENTION : - Où elle va ?” is not allowed, we prefer to ask “ Elle va où ?” - Don’t forget the accent on the “ù” ! POURQUOI (WHY) : POURQUOI (WHY) is used to express the cause or reason behind anything. When used with the intonation of a question, "POURQUOI" is placed at the beginning of the sentence. ex: Pourquoi es-tu là ? = Pourquoi tu es là ? = Pourquoi est-ce que tu es là ? QUAND (WHEN) : In general, QUAND comes before the verb but you can also put it after (ex: Tu viens quand ?). ex : When are you coming ? = Tu viens quand? Quand viens-tu ? Quand est-ce que tu viens ? COMBIEN (HOW MUCH, HOW MANY) for quantity : Combien can mean HOW MUCH or HOW MANY, it is a very useful one ! ex : How much does this cake cost ? Combien ça coûte ? Combien est-ce que ça coûte ? COMMENT (HOW) : COMMENT is used to express the way or manner of doing something. When used with the intonation of a question, "COMMENT" can be placed at different positions in the sentence. ex : Comment apprends-tu le français ? = Comment est-ce que tu apprends le français ?= Tu apprends le français comment ? (less formal) You can see that with COMMENT, you are pretty free !

Did you understand it well ?

Question 1

______ est ton anniversaire ?

Question 2

______ est-ce que tu lis ce livre ?

Question 3

______ de temps passes-tu à étudier chaque jour ?

Question 4

______ fais-tu pour résoudre ce problème ?

Question 5

______ est-ce que tu as mangé ce matin ?

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