So, this isn't a lesson, that would be way too long. But, I'm going to tell you all the French grammar points you need to master to be able to communicate in French from beginner to advanced level.
Beginner level A1 in French :
So, at the beginner level, I really advise you if you don't know at all what grammar is even in your native language, is to understand what grammar is.
Grammar is an aspect of language that deals with the organization of words and sentences in order to express your ideas in a coherent and logical way. It is present in every language in the world, although the rules of grammar can vary considerably from one language to another.
In your native language, focus on grammar, especially the basics
- What is a sentence made of?
- How is a sentence structured?
- What is a noun, a verb, an adjective, a determiner, a preposition, a conjugation, etc?
- What is it used for?
Understanding how grammar works in your language will help you better understand and master French grammar later on.
Once you understand what grammar is, you will have to master :
Le présent de l’indicatif.
It's a temporal mode to talk about actions we do in the present.
Je vais au supermarché.
Les articles définis et indéfinis :
(un, une, des, le, la, les, l’)
How to use them and what they are used for?
La négation simple :
How to form an affirmative and negative sentence in French?
Je ne vais pas au travail.
Les pays et leurs prépositions :
You need to know which prepositions to use when talking about countries in French.
Les questions en français :
How to ask questions in French ? Learn how to ask questions in French, learn the interrogative words and the different ways to ask questions in French.
Où habites-tu ?
Les articles partitifs :
Les articles partitifs (du, de la, des) will allow you to talk about non-quantifiable elements, such as food.
Les adverbes de quantité :
The adverbs of quantity will allow you to express a quantity.
Un morceau de fromage
Les articles possessifs :
Then, you have to master the possessive articles in French: mon, ma, ton, ta, etc.
Les adjectifs :
It's also important that you know the adjectives in French how they are placed and how they agree in the masculine and feminine and also in the singular and plural.
Une femme intelligente
La comparaison :
Learn to compare in French and thanks to the adverbs of comparison.
Il est plus fort que lui.
Les pronoms toniques :
The tonic pronouns (toi, moi, elle, lui, etc) will be very useful for several points in French, it is important to master them.
Et toi ?
The imperative is a mode that will allow you to give orders and advice.
Mange ton repas !
La forme pronominale :
The pronominal form is used a lot in French, it is important that you master this point to talk about the actions you do.
Je me réveille à 7h.
Le futur proche :
The near future is very much in use, especially when speaking, as it allows you to talk about a certain and close future.
Je vais marcher une heure.
Les prépositions de lieux :
The prepositions of place will allow you to indicate a place or to talk about a place.
Le chat est sous le bureau.
Le passé composé :
The passé composé is a very common past tense in French. It is a rather complex tense to master, you can already start to see this tense at the beginner level.
Elle est allée chez le coiffeur.
Intermediate level A2 in French :
At A1 level, you should already have a good basic knowledge of grammar. To reach the A2 level, you will need to master :
Les connecteurs de cause et de conséquence :
The cause and consequence connectors will allow you to argue your points and to have more complex sentences.
J’aime l’été parce qu’il fait plus chaud.
The imperfect tense is a past tense that is important to know to talk about your past habits and to describe the past.
Il faisait très froid ce weekend.
L’imparfait ou le passé composé :
After that, you need to understand the difference between the imperfect and the past perfect. It may seem a bit complex, but with practice you'll get the hang of it.
Il faisait très froid ce weekend donc je suis restée à la maison.
Le futur simple :
The simple future is a French tense to talk about a less certain and sometimes more distant future. It is a tense that you should know too.
J’irai au Portugal l’année prochaine.
Le futur simple et le futur proche :
This will be a very simple lesson, but it's good that you know the difference between the simple and near future.
J’irai / Je vais aller au Portugal l’année prochaine.
Les expressions de temps :
At this point, you should have mastered the main tenses in French, so it's time to master the expressions of time.
J’ai vécu ici pendant 10 ans.
Les pronoms relatifs :
Relative pronouns will allow you to have shorter and more natural sentences in French.
C’est le pull que j’aime bien.
Les pronoms COD et COI :
A rather complex lesson, but very important, as the COD and COI pronouns are widely used in French.
Je l’appelle tous les jours.
Le conditionnel présent :
A new tense to master is the present conditional. It will allow you to be more polite and to make assumptions.
Je voudrais venir si c’est possible.
Le discours rapporté :
This is a simple lesson: reported speech. It will allow you to report someone's words.
Il m’a dit qu’il ne venait pas aujourd’hui.
Les pronoms possessifs :
A short but necessary lesson: possessive pronouns.
C’est le mien !
La voix passive :
The passive voice is also used, it will allow you to vary your sentences in French.
La souris a été mangée par le chat.
Les indéfinis :
Very useful: indefinite articles and adjectives. Sometimes difficult to remember, but they are very useful.
Tout le monde est venu à cette soirée.
Les pronoms EN et Y :
They are very dreaded by learners, they are the pronouns EN and Y. They are also used a lot in French and will allow you to have shorter and more natural sentences.
J’en mange à chaque repas.
Le gérondif :
Often forgotten, but the gerund is very used to talk about simultaneous actions or to express the way.
Il est tombé en skiant.
At the end of the A2 level, I advise you to make a big revision, because you have seen many grammar points.
If you need help, join the group French classes I am offering starting in January, we will go over all these points, as this is the program I recommend.
Level B1 in French :
This is the final stretch. I consider A2 and B1 to be the busiest levels for grammar.
Start with a good review of what you have already seen, it is essential.
Then you need to master :
La négation complexe :
You have seen simple negation at A1 level and now we see complex negation. Hence the importance of mastering the basics of grammar.
Je ne bois plus d’alcool.
Le subjonctif présent :
It's a complex tense, but very useful in French. It allows you to express your feelings, your doubts, your obligations in French. It may take you some time to master the subjunctive, like other tenses. Don't worry!
Je veux que tu viennes demain.
Le plus-que-parfait :
The plus-que-perfect is a past tense less used than the imparfait and the passé composé, but it is sometimes used. You need to master it.
Il s’est mis à pleuvoir, heureusement j’avais pris mon parapluie.
Les connecteurs logiques :
You've already seen some connectors, but you need to master more of them to vary your sentences and argue.
Je me dépêche pour que tout soit prêt.
L’accord du participe passé :
This is a very difficult lesson even for the French. I recommend you to see this lesson especially if you have to write a lot in French.
C’est la tarte que j’ai préparée.
Les pronoms relatifs composés :
You have seen the relative pronouns in A2, but now you need to see the compound relative pronouns that are used in French.
C’est la raison pour laquelle je t’appelle.
Le conditionnel passé :
Again, you've seen the present condtional, now we see the past conditional. It is used to express past regrets, reproaches and assumptions.
J’aurais dû venir plus tôt.
La concession et l’opposition :
This lesson is related to logical connectors and will allow you to be more nuanced when expressing yourself in French.
Je sors malgré la pluie.
Advanced level B2 in French :
Want some good news? At this level, you've already seen most of the grammar points. Now it's going to be a lot of revision. You'll review what you've already seen, but you'll also go into more detail, including a better grasp of the nuances and exceptions of grammar.
Start with a big review of the subjunctive, then you can discover :
Le subjonctif passé :
If you already know the subjunctive, the past subjunctive is honestly not that difficult.
Je suis contente que tu sois venu.
Le passé simple :
The past simple tense is rarely used in French. It is mostly used in novels. It is a literary tense. I don't necessarily invite you to master this tense, but at least to know it
Il fut surpris de sa réaction.
La mise en relief :
La mise en relief will allow you to vary and nuance your sentences.
Ce qui me dérange, c’est son comportement.
Les verbes et leurs prépositions :
This is a complex subject, because to be honest there is no perfect rule for knowing which prepositions to use with which verbs, but you can still have a certain logic on some verbs.
Je pense à lui tous les soirs.
Le futur antérieur :
The future tense is rarely used, but only in a very specific context. It's still necessary to know this tense.
Quand j'aurai fini mes devoirs, j'appellerai mon père.
It's already finished, yes, for the B2 level. So, as I said, there are few grammar points at this level. But, you will mostly continue to practice the previous grammar points.
Independent level C1 / C2 in French:
Spoiler: there won't be many new grammar points to master for the C1 and C2 level.
I'm repeating myself but it's very important: make sure you review everything you've already learned. You have no idea how quickly you forget!
You can see some useful grammar points, like :
Le participe présent et l’adjectif verbal :
It's widely used in French and will allow you to increase your vocabulary at the same time.
Fatiguant / Fatigant
La concordance des temps :
You have seen all the main tenses in French, you should be able to know when to use the right tense for a verb depending on what you want to say.
Il m’avait dit qu’il ne sera pas là.
For the C1/C2 level, we aim for nuance and argumentation, so you can see :
The organization of the discourse
Now you know everything you need to know to master French grammar from beginner to advanced level
If it's too complicated for you to see all this grammar, if you can't organize yourself, join my group French classes: in 3 months you will express yourself more naturally, you will have enriched your vocabulary, and you will master more grammar points. Registration is open now, so hurry up and sign up before it runs out!
See you soon for new adventures, in French of course! 🇫🇷