"C'est tout à fait ça."
Translation:That is it exactly.
I could see that possibly working. Though one could argue that when you're actually immersed in the language you'll get idioms thrown at you when you least expect it, so you might as well get used to having to recognize them amongst "regular" phrases. Just because they're mixed into other lessons doesn't mean a section on idioms wouldn't work, though.
that may be true, but when learning, even if one is talking to a native French speaker, they would ascertain (hopefully) that one is not as fluent as they are and would take care to not use idioms like they would do in conversations with their friends. I know that when talking to someone who is not fluent in English, I don't throw slang and idioms at them. It is rather cruel to throw in expressions that are outside the bounds of what one has learned thus far and then take away from them on something they know they have not made clear to begin with.
I hope this isn't taken as rude. But I would like to say that sometimes you don't even realize what you're saying is an idiom or confusing for someone else to learn. For example I am an American and when in Germany I was asked if i wanted more of a certain type of food. I said "it's ok" which to me means no but to my friends parents who actually speak English it was confusing. I don't know if that is a good example but I believe people all probably do it without realizing.
I find it confusing when English friends say "It's alright" or "I don't mind" in the same context... do they love it or hate it? I think they hate it (or do they really really want it?) but are too polite to say so! But if I, an American say "It's ok or it's alright, I usually mean I don't love it, but it is passable. So even with in our own cultures, we are ambiguous. A lot in English depends on tone of voice, since we often are indirect to the point of madness in the guise of being passively "polite".
'Tout à fait' is a french expression, see more at: http://french.about.com/od/vocabulary/a/tout-a-fait.htm
I agree, idioms deserve special treatment of some sort. They seem to be easy to confuse when burried in a sentence. Perhaps DL could at least highlight the text that belongs to an idiom in some way to alert us that this question contains and idiom and we shouldn't try to translate it word for word. This could be done with colour or an * etc.
I was referring specifically to "tout à fait". using that to mean exactly rather than "exactement" seems confusing to me because, word for word, "tout à fait" translates closer to "all to do". So it's just difficult for someone who's learning to catch on to all these accepted meanings when they're not introduced any differently from the literal, word for word translation.
I also found "tout à fait" strange at first, but now I'm used to it and I just think of it as a word. I'm not sure there would have been any benefit to having it sectioned off as something different. If we started doing that, it would be hard to know where to draw the line between things that are "identical" to English, and things that are different enough to warrant being sectioned off.
no it wouldn't. If one understands idioms and don't need it explained, then they can test out of it and move on.
If done properly, it would be explained that it is a turn of a phrase, just like in other languages, that doesn't follow the same interpretation path, just like slang. Telling a person learning the language of this instead of kneecapping them with it when they've never encountered it (or because they're too lazy to point it out) is unfair.
1) In singular "tout(e)", before a noun and as a modifier, it means "every" or "all"
-"tout homme a le droit..." (= every man has / all men have the right...)
-"en toute liberté" (= in all freedom / freely)
-"pour tout renseignement, cliquer ici" (for any information, click here)
2) In singular, before an article + a noun, it expresses totality, entirety
-"il a plu toute la journée" (it has rained all day)
-"c'est tout le contraire" (it is just the opposite)
-"c'est tout un programme" (it is a whole program)
-"c'est tout l'effet que ça te fait ?" (is that all you can say?)
3) In plural, before a plural determiner + noun, it means "the whole" or "all"
-"de tous les côtés" (on/from all sides // in all directions)
4) In plural and with a notion of time or distance, expresses an occurrence or an interval
-"je le vois toutes les semaines" (I see him every week)
-"il y a une borne tous les kilomètres" (there is a marker at every kilometer)
5) As an adverb, placed in front of an adjective, it adds intensity to the adjective or past participle or other adverb
-"le ciel est tout bleu"
-"elle est toute seule / tout étonnée" (invariable in front of a vowel or a non aspirate H)
6) In front of a material, it means "exclusively":
-"tout coton" (100% cotton)
7) In front of a gerund, it means simultaneity
-"tout en marchant" (while walking)
Thank you very much for all that info Sitesurf, I am still finding Tous and all it's variations confusing despite dictionary & online searches.
Please could you let me know if the following is correct?
Tout= Masc Sing
Merci beaucoup en avance :]
I don't know if the hints are necessarily wrong, it's just that the French does not map perfectly onto the English. There are French phrases that use "tout à fait" where it probably can be replaced by "quite" in English, but I don't think this is one of them. "That is quite it" is a bit of a weird phrase.
However, I'd consider the English phrases "That is quite right" and "That is exactly right" to be fairly interchangeable, so perhaps if the French used "tout à fait" there, either word would be accepted.
"ce" can mean a lot of things. For more precision you may use other words.
"Ceci" generally means "this", "cela" means "that", "ça" is a contraction of "cela", so it too means "that" -- though it sometimes also passes for "ce" and means about anything.
They also often use any of these "ce" words to mean "it".
The French are weirdly imprecise. But, with an idiom, there is a French understanding of what it means. Here on DL they're saying it means "it", but I suspect it's just more French imprecision and thus means "whatever".