Well, on the 16th of May we had a go at Monopoly in French, with some twists. The main reason was to work hard on our numbers. (and didn't we work hard!).

The money and properties were mainly handed out at the start and players moved around the board landing on each other's properties, then asking for and paying rent. There were also 4 properties left for players to buy if they landed on them.

It's not as easy as it sounds - here's the "twist" - when a player landed on their property, landlords had to take the £ rent figure from the monopoly card and add on the smaller number of the two dice rolled by the player to get the final rent due. So, we had French numbers and French arithmetic in the same game!

Later we switched to using the rent figure shown on the card for the property with one house built, and our first example was £178! In French numbers this translates to one hundred and sixty-eighteen (cent soixante dix-huit) so it immediately illustrated the complexity presented by French numbering to English speakers.

Even for numbers below 60, which were the main numbers we used, we learned that it can be complicated to add and subtract numbers in French (subtracting for giving change) and for Water Works and Electricty company we even had to multiply the number on the dice by 4, then add on the smaller dice number!

In the spur of the moment we all had moments where we were flustered. That's normal; however the more you practise your numbers the less this happens.

You could of course play the whole game without the short cuts, but we didnt have time so that's why I handed out the properties from the start. The idea of changing the rent by adding the dice number was to stop the repeats (i.e. after four people land on The Strand the landlord easily remembers the rent in French - this way the rent always changes).


Some of the vocabulary we used for Monopoly.

-Les dés = the dice

-Lancez les dés = roll the dice (literally = « launch the dice »)

-Déplacez 10 carrés = move 10 squares (a formal instruction to someone)

-Sept et cinq, c'est douze = seven and five, that's twelve

-Quattre multiplié par cinq, c'est vingt = four multiplied by five, that's twenty

-Acheter = to buy    /    J’achète = I buy    /    Je l’achète = I buy it

-Je voudrais acheter ça = I would like to buy that (=the most simple way to express it)

-Est-ce que je peux acheter ça ? = can I buy that ?

-Puis-je l’achète ? = can I buy it ?

-Non c’est à moi = no it is mine (lierally, « no, it is to me » or « no it is at me »)

-(You might also hear, “c’est le mien” which also means “it is mine”)

-Allez à la prison = go to jail/prison

-Le Coffre = the chest (as in community chest – also used for the overhead luggage compartment in a plane)

-La chance = luck

-Le parking gratuit = free parking

-L’impôt sur le revenue = income tax

-La super-taxe = super tax