Posts tagged "cards"

Simply French for Beginners - numbers practise with playing cards

In our 13th June 2018 session we used ordinary playing cards to practise our knowledge of numbers.


  1. we ignored the suits for this game, only using the numbers;
  2. the dealer places one card on the table for a player, they have to say the number in  French e.g. 5 = cinq);
  3. They are then dealt a second card and they have to say this one in French and then add it to the first (e.g. 4 = quatre, so 4 et 5, c'est 9);
  4. Then they have to view the cards as "tens" and "units", so in the above, cards 4 and 5 together reads as 45, so they have to say 45 in French;
  5. Finally they are dealt a third card and they have to read this as hundreds, tens and units, so if card 7 was placed alongside 4 and 5, it reads as 745, and the player has to say 745 in French. We even added thousands by adding a 4th card...
  6. Then you move to the next player and repeat.
  7. to make the maths easier the picture cards dropped their "tens" value to only their "units" value - therefore: Jack which normally is 11, drops the ten and becomes 1; queen is normally 12 so drops the ten and becomes 2; King is normally 13 becomes 3, Ace becomes 1.


Some general French vocabulary for playing cards.

 Picture card names:

  • Le valet = the jack
  • La dame = the queen
  • Le roi = the king
  • L’as = the ace (pronounced “ass”)


  • Diamonds = Carreau
  • Clubs = Trèfle
  • Spades = Pique
  • Hearts = Cœur
  • So, Le deux de carreau = the 2 of diamonds
  • Le six de pique = the 6 of spades
  • Le roi de trèfle = the king of clubs
  • La dame de cœur = the queen of hearts









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