France Activities

Here are some France activities to do for a geography country study:

Food Exploration

Have some French food. It can be very simple, like croissants, cheese, and grapes. You can also go all out and look up some French recipes online for the full meal deal.

This is a croissant. Eat it with grapes and cheese or make it into a sandwich. Photo by Lecoq Cuisine, Free Art License, Wikimedia.

Movie Exploration

Watch a movie on France from the library. It can be a movie about a historical topic like Joan of Arc or the French Revolution or it can be a travel guide of modern France, depending on your focus.

Flag Exploration

Make French Flags out of construction paper. Cut a piece of white construction paper in quarters. Then cut red construction paper into quarters and each of those quarters into thirds. Do the same with blue construction paper. Next glue the red strip of paper onto one edge of the white and the blue onto the other edge. The stripes on the flag should be vertical. The red stripe, goes on the hoist side, the side next to the flag pole, or if you are putting it up on a wall, the left side. Now you can either tape the French flag up on your wall or paste it onto a popsicle stick to wave around.

france_flag

The french flag was adopted during the French Revolution. The red and blue are the traditional colors of Paris and the white stands for the monarchy.

Timeline Exploration

Make a Timeline of French History. You can do a basic timeline of all of France’s History or just a timeline showing a particular time period. The amount of detail you include will depend on the ages of your children. To find the dates to include just enter “French history time line” or “French Revolution Timeline” for example into a Internet search engine.

Landmarks Exploration

Look up French Landmarks like the Louvre, Versailles Palace, Monet’s garden, The Eiffel Tower, The Arc de Triumph and others. Learn about the history of these places. Why were they built, by whom, and where are they located?

This is the Hall of Mirrors in the Palace of Versailles not far from Paris. Versailles was the palace of the most powerful of the French monarchs. Today it is a museum and tourist destination. Photo by Myrabella / Wikimedia Commons / CC-BY-SA-3.0.

Library List

Read a book written about France or that takes place in France. Some that come to mind are

  • The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Orckzy,
  • Les Miserables by Victor Hugo,
  • A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens,
  • The Three Musketeers and The Man in the Iron Mask both by Alexandre Dumas,
  • Villette by Charlotte Bronte,
  • the fairy tales of Charles Perrault, and
  • Vanity Fair by Thackeray.

Some of these books can be found in simplified editions for younger readers, read aloud, or found in movie form. Also look for biographies of famous French people at your library: Charlemagne, William of Normandy, Joan of Arc, Louis XIV, Louis XVI, Marie Antoinette, Robespierre, Napoleon, Marat, plus many more.

Art Exploration

Gaze at French Art. The most popular French art is found in the Impressionists Movement. Some famous french impressionists are Manet, Monet, Degas, Morisot, and Seurat. Get an art book from the library or find examples of French art online. You can also have the kids try to paint the way the Impressionists did, outside, with watercolors and concerned more with the colors of the light than with the shapes of objects.

This is “Monet Painting in his Garden” by August Renoir. Impressionism is the most famous French art movement and very popular with modern viewers.

Music Exploration

Listen to French Composers. Berlioz, Satie, Bizet (who wrote the opera Carmen), Debussy, and Ravel are all famous French composers. Look for CD’s of their work at the library or find examples online. Listen while in the car or when the kids are coloring or playing with play dough.

Map Exploration

Color a France Map.  Using a student atlas, label some of the major cities, rivers, oceans, mountains, and seas. Then color the map.

France web

 

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