"Les enfants lisent un livre."

Translation:The children are reading a book.

December 18, 2012

This discussion is locked.


The plural hints are there: "les-z-enfants" as opposed to "l'enfant" + "liZent" as opposed to "lit".


Is there a way to distinguish between 'The children read (red) a book' and 'The children are reading a book'?


Les enfants ont lu un livre = the children read (past tense) a book. Les enfants lisent un livre (present tense) = the children are reading a book.


Doesnt ont mean have?!


Yes, and "ont lu" is have read (past tense). In French, le Passe Compose, which is the past tense is built using avoir and a participle or etre and a participle for certain verbs (mainly those involving movement of some kind).


woody- the children are reading a book would be : les enfants sont en train de lire un livre.


The kids are reading a book should also be accepted


Enfants = children

Kids = gamins/gamines


I usually input children but kids was provided in the eord translation. Duolingo is wrong.


'Children' and 'kids' are synonyms. There is no difference between them


I agree that "kids" should be accepted as correct and also that "read" should be accepted as an alternative to "are reading".


What is the difference between lisent,lit and lisons? I know that they mean "eat" or "is eating". Can any french expert tell when they are used?


French verbs are extensively conjugated, unlike English verbs, so you have to learn conjugations as you go:

  • to read = lire: je lis, tu lis, il/elle lit, nous lisons, vous lisez, ils/elles lisent
  • to eat = manger: je mange, tu manges, il/elle mange, nous mangeons, vous mangez, ils/elles mangent.


I thought it was livres(not singular) because i heard les enfants. Is it really talked in this way?not just only for grammar thing?


"un livre", in this sentence can be understood as "one book for all of them" or "each one his/her own book".


samantha- even if each child would read a book, and not the same one, it implies that each child only has one book, that's why we say UN LIVRE


Is "liser" by any chance a cognate of the German "lesen?" Both mean read...


The infinitive is "lire".


When is it 'lisent' and when is it 'lisons'?? I don't understand!


French verbs have extensive conjugations forms:

Verb "lire": je lis, tu lis, il/elle lit, nous lisons, vous lisez, ils/elles lisent.


What is the difference between Des Gamins and Enfants?


gamins/gamines - kids

enfants = children


Hi I was just wondering about une or un in a sentence. How do you know if the tranlation is one or a or an?


French nouns all have genders, masculine or feminine. It comes from etymology (French is mostly derived from Latin). So, you have to learn every new noun with its own gender.


Does "un" = "a" or "one"? It will be translated as "a" (or) "an" when "un/une" is used...

  • before a noun to refer to a single thing that has not been mentioned before, especially when you are not referring to a particular thing. Example: J'ai acheté une voiture = I bought a car.

  • to refer to a type of thing (or person) someone is. Example: She wants to be a doctor.

  • any or everything of the type you are referring to. Example: Can you ride a bike? A teacher needs a lot of patience.

  • before uncountable nouns to limit their meaning in some way. Example: I have a limited knowledge of Spanish.

  • before nouns of action when referring to one example of the action. Example: Take a look at this. I'm going to have a snack. There was a knock at the door.

  • to refer to a unit or container of something, especially something you eat or drink (i.e., a serving). Example: I would love a coffee. I had a yogurt for lunch.

  • before the first but not the second of two nouns that are typically considered a unit. Example: a cup and saucer; a knife and fork.

  • before some words that express a number or amount. Example: a few days; a lot of money

  • as a determiner rather than the number "one", unless you are specifically making a point about the number. Example: a hundred, a thousand, a dozen, there were three men and a woman.

  • when saying how often something happens in a certain period. Example: take one tablet three times a day (or) I swim once a week.

In these situations, "un/une" will NOT be translated as "ONE". Source: Cambridge English Dictionary. Use "an" when the following word begins with a vowel or vowel sound.


Well, differences between 'a' and 'an' are only relevant in English with regards to the first letter of the following word. Whether it's 'a' or 'one' depends on context and are otherwise interchangeable (unless you are explicitly stating that it was only one item I guess) :/ Can't expect direct word-for-word translation b/w such different languages, can you?..


Why is it wrong when I wrote:' The children read the book.'


Because they read "A/un" book not "the/le" book. Get me? :)


Article usage. In english is more natural to say: Children without the. From english to french the translation woul be: Children do something -> LES ENFANTS font quelque chose.... donc ça devrai etre ok de traduire Children sans l'article


It is natural to say "children do this and that" when this refers to all children in the world or all children as a homogeneous group.

In this case, not all children would read a book I think.

The issue is that in French "le, la, les" are used for generalities and for specificity. In this sentence, I think it is correct to consider that specific children are referred to. Therefore the English sentence needs an article: "the children read a book".


What is the different between lit,lison and lisent? Can someone help me?


if with lison you mean lisons here we are: "il lit" = third person singular. He reads - "nous lisons" = we read (plural) - "ils lisent" = they read (third person plural)


the kids are reading a book?


Kids = des gamins/gamines


How do you pronouce lisent


Yay i got it right!


Why is the version "The kids read a book" marked wrong? I mean the word "kids"?


Les enfants = (the) children (standard register of speech)

The kids = les gamins/les gamines (colloq.)

  • 2053

I am doing this exercise in the new crown system. The content of exercise is not new to me. However, I keep being rejected by duo, such as the current one.

My answer is "the kids are reading a book ". In almost all exercises, duo allows both 'kids" and "children" for "les enfants". I have got at least 3 rejections because of using "kids".

My question: Does duo no longer allow "kids" for "les enfants"?


"Kids" and "children" do not belong in the same register of speech.

In French "kids" is "les gamins/les gamines" (or other variants).

If you stick to the standard English "children" to translate to the standard French "enfants" and vice-versa, you won't have any problem.


what is the difference between lisent and lisons?


The suffix -ons is the conjugation ending for "nous" (we), all verbs, tenses and moods.

The suffix -ent is the conjugation ending for "ils/elles" (they), all verbs, tenses and moods.

  • je lis, tu lis, il/elle/on lit, nous lisons, vous lisez, ils/elles lisent.


I thought I knew the different conjugations of lire.Which ones do you use for garçon/homme,fille femme,and enfant/enfants?


Grammatical persons are identified with the following personal pronouns:

  • 1st person singular = je = I
  • 2nd person singular = tu = the familiar "you"
  • 3rd person singular = il, elle, on = he, she, it, one
  • 1st person plural = nous = we
  • 2nd person plural = vous = the formal singular "you" or the plural "you"
  • 3rd person plural = ils, elle = they

When the subject is a third party and singular (garçon, fille, homme, fille, femme, enfant, animal, chose), the conjugation is 3rd person singular: il/elle/on lit = he/she/it/one reads

When the subject is a third party and plural (garçons, hommes, filles, femmes, enfants, animaux, choses...), the conjugation is 3rd person plural = ils/elles lisent = they read.


"Kids" should also be accepted as a synonym to "children".


Enfants = children
Kids = gamins/gamines

You don't need synonyms at this stage in the course.


Im struggling to hear the difference between lis, lisent and lit. Can anyone enlighten me?


There is no difference in pronunciation. To understand which one to use, look at the contextual clues: Je/tu lis, ils/elles lisent, elle/il lit, nous lisons, vous lisez. Good luck!


But of course, lisons and lisez are pronounced differently. I just threw those in there so that everything would be in one place :)


why don't you pronounce it as lisen t-un livre?


The liaison is only optional.


I didn't mean to turn off the speaker


I said, "The kids are reading a book"... I don't understand why it said that's incorrect.


had this 3 times in row ❤❤❤


should "enfants" also be classified as kids, and not just children?


"Enfants" and "children" both belong to the standard register of speech.

In the informal register of speech, "kids" and "les gamins/les gamines" translate each other.


oh, ok then that explains a lot


Kids should be accepted to replace children. Cmon duo!


Why so? Don't you expect to learn standard French?


The keyboard is blocking the text. I can’t see what I am writing.


I am not able to understand you why don't you give the conjugations of verbs in present tense and plural before you give me the text in French? I would repeat them several times and memorise. I have to learn them before you test me.


Because they are so easy to find! http://www.conjugation-fr.com/


Is the "t" in "lisent" carried over to "un"? Like "lisen-tun livre"?


The liaison after "lisent" is only optional and formal.


How are you supposed to hear the difference between "lis" and "lisent"?


You don't, you infer it from context.

Learn French in just 5 minutes a day. For free.