We often make mistakes when we learn French that are related to our native language.

And that's perfectly normal! I also make a lot of "French" mistakes when I speak English.

Today, I want to help you if your native language is English to avoid making these mistakes in French.

We will see 5 mistakes that English speakers often make when they speak French.


Mistake N°1

- Comment tu vas ?
- ❌ Je suis bien.
- ✅ Je VAIS bien !

In English, to ask and answer "how are we doing?". We use the verb "to be", but in French, we use the verb "aller" (=to go) !

  • Comment tu vas ?
  • Je vais bien.

💡 A trick that works here, but also in other situations: use the verb used in the question.

You are asked a question, reuse the verb of the question:

- Comment tu vas ?
- Je vais bien.


- Comment tu te sens ?
- Je me sens bien.



Mistake N°2

- Quel âge as-tu ?
- ❌ Je suis 27 ans.
- ✅ J’AI 27 ans.

Once again, we don't use the same verb in French and in English.

In English, one is an age. In French, we "have" an age.

The trick I gave you before works, if you are asked your age of course.

- Quel âge AS-tu ?
- J’AI 27 ans.



Mistake N°3

- Tu aimes faire la fête ?
 Ça dépend sur l’ambiance.
 Ça dépend DE l’ambiance.


Aaaaaah prepositions in French! I always tell my students, the two most difficult things in French are: gender (feminine or masculine) and prepositions.

Prepositions in French are VERY different from prepositions in English.

The verb "dépendre" (=to depend) is built with the preposition "DE" and NOT with the preposition "SUR".


✅ Ça dépend de la situation.

✅ Ça dépend de la météo.

✅ Ça dépend de ton humeur.

.✅ Ça dépend du professeur.


And if you want to practice more in depth and learn how to not make those mistakes when speaking. I invite you to join my French conversation group: Ohlala French Coffee.

I was inspired by the mistakes my English-speaking students often make in my conversation group to make this video. And of course, the teachers correct these mistakes during the session.

SPOILER: You often make the same mistakes.


How does Ohlala French Coffee work?

We have one conversation topic per week.

You prepare with authentic resources: oral or written comprehension, vocabulary or grammar exercises and ideas for conversation questions.

During the sessions, of which there are 7 per week, you practice the conversation topic with other students. There are 2/3 students of the same level.

The teacher present during the session is there as support if you need help or to answer your questions. He/she notes interesting vocabulary you use and sentences you need to improve in French.

At the end of the session, the teacher will share the vocabulary, the sentences to improve and also the pronunciation. He will also answer your questions.

This is a perfect program if you are rather autonomous in your learning and want to practice your oral French.



Mistake N°4

Je suis stressée, car je dois …
❌  faire une décision
  prendre une décision.

In French, one "prend" (=take) a decision, one does not make it. It's a mistake to use the verb "faire" with decision.


Mistake N°5

- Ça te plait d’apprendre le français ?
 Oui, ça me fait heureux
 Oui, ça me REND heureux

If I want to talk about a change of state using an adjective, I won't use the verb "to do", but the verb "to make".

✅ L’hiver me rend triste.

✅ Le lait me rend malade

✅ Ça me rend joyeux(euse)

If you have trouble using the verb "faire" in French, I invite you to read this article: Use the verb "faire" in French and do not make any more mistakes between "faire" and "rendre".