We are family!
Save 15% on all annual Premium plans »

An alternative approach to "C'est vs Il Est" ?

AlanA2Kwiziq community member

An alternative approach to "C'est vs Il Est" ?

It seemed to me that any time I was tested on "C'est" or "Il Est", I was simply guessing.

The closer a question matched one of the examples in the Lesson - the more likely I was to choose the correct answer. But if there was no exact match with an example in the lesson - I was stumped.

With respect, I found the following article somewhat easier to follow than the Lesson on this page:

https://www.lawlessfrench.com/grammar/cest-vs-il-est/

That article uses the descriptor "determiner". IMO that descriptor seems to clarify everything for me.

There's a good article on determiners here:

https://www.lawlessfrench.com/grammar/determiners/

So a determiner is just a posh name for a word that modifies a noun. It's similar to an adjective

The Lawless article is several times longer than the KwizIQ article. But if you ignore any material that is not mentioned in this current KwizIQ article, then the amount of instructional text will be about the same.

Here's how I read the Lawless article:

 (1) Read every word from the start until just before the red warning triangle.  .

 (2) You can ignore the material immediately after the red triangle. It's useful info, but it's not tested by KwizIQ.

 (3) Restart reading at "2. C’est and il est with inanimate nouns".

 (4) Ignore everything after the green scales icon. Again, it's useful info but - but not tested in KwizIQ.

Thanks

Asked 1 year ago
CélineKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Bonjour Alan,

Thank you for your feedback and suggestions! We agree too that this particular lesson needs to be updated. It has now been added to the list ;-)

Merci et bonne journée !

ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

I agree, the lesson on Lawless is probably worded a bit clearer. To get you in the ballpark, you look at whether what follows is a noun or a description of a noun. If it's a noun use c'est otherwise use il est (or one of its forms).

C'est ma soeur. -- It's my sister. / She's my sister. (Note that c'est is followed by the noun soeur.)
Elle est mignonne. -- She's cute. (Here it's an adjective following, so use elle est)

C'est mon livre. -- This is my book. (A noun following, so use c'est.)
Il est sur la table. -- It's on the table. (A descriptive phrase following, so use il est.)

AlanA2Kwiziq community member

@Céline,

I respectfully suggest that there should be at least two articles for  "C'est vs Il est":

- One article could be based on simple templates - such as suggested by @Chris in this thread.

 - The other article(s) would contain everything else, and would be aimed at advanced students. 

IMO, the use of multiple lessons might yield  an extra bonus. There is advanced material in the Lawless article that was not included in the current Lesson - but could be included in an advanced KwizIQ Lesson.

Thanks

CélineKwiziq team member

Bonjour Alan,

Thanks for sharing your suggestion! I will make sure to pass it on to the French language team ;-)

Merci et bonne journée !

AndyA2Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

@Chris  And yet a related kwiz for this topic counts "Il est vert" as wrong and only accepts "C'est vert." I had understood the distinction between il est and c'est before coming to Kwiziq, even for use with occupations, but that completely threw me off and caused me to get a lot wrong after, as I assumed I must be mixed up somehow.

An alternative approach to "C'est vs Il Est" ?

It seemed to me that any time I was tested on "C'est" or "Il Est", I was simply guessing.

The closer a question matched one of the examples in the Lesson - the more likely I was to choose the correct answer. But if there was no exact match with an example in the lesson - I was stumped.

With respect, I found the following article somewhat easier to follow than the Lesson on this page:

https://www.lawlessfrench.com/grammar/cest-vs-il-est/

That article uses the descriptor "determiner". IMO that descriptor seems to clarify everything for me.

There's a good article on determiners here:

https://www.lawlessfrench.com/grammar/determiners/

So a determiner is just a posh name for a word that modifies a noun. It's similar to an adjective

The Lawless article is several times longer than the KwizIQ article. But if you ignore any material that is not mentioned in this current KwizIQ article, then the amount of instructional text will be about the same.

Here's how I read the Lawless article:

 (1) Read every word from the start until just before the red warning triangle.  .

 (2) You can ignore the material immediately after the red triangle. It's useful info, but it's not tested by KwizIQ.

 (3) Restart reading at "2. C’est and il est with inanimate nouns".

 (4) Ignore everything after the green scales icon. Again, it's useful info but - but not tested in KwizIQ.

Thanks

Sign in to submit your answer

Don't have an account yet? Join today

Ask a question

Find your French level for FREE

Test your French to the CEFR standard

Find your French level
Let me take a look at that...