Young Kids say a lot of wacky stuff. I always want to video them chatting, because it is simply hilarious. And it adds a whole different level when those kids are born-and-bred little Frenchies.
Table of Contents
Funny Words your French Child will say
i) “Berk” instead of “Yuck”
The correct pronunciation of “Berk” includes a throwing up reflex if you can manage that. I don’t know the linguistic origins of “Yuck”, so who is to say our common latin ancestors didn’t say “Berk” instead?
ii) “Aiee” instead of “Ow!”
Drop a hammer on your foot? Aieeee!
iii) Oh la la!
It is very cute when your 2-year old first comes home saying this. My kids can even do the extra inflections of the “la’s” with “oh la la la la la la!”
iv) Caca Boudin
The first “gros mot” or swear word on the list. Every French child comes home from school saying this, it is as inevitable as the sun coming up in the morning.
☞ RELATED POST: Caca Boudin: Your French Child’s first swear word
v) Bébé Cadum!
This is an odd one because it is actually a famous brand name of a baby hydrating cream. The ad has adorably chubby babies in it, which adults can lovingly coo over. And there in lies the problem, at least in the minds of your young French Child. To them, bébé cadum is an insult, because of course he/she is no longer a baby!
Hello Spiderman, meet the French accent. Every anglophone parent I know in France just sighs and desperately tries to correct this “speederman” business before the North American side of the family hears your little one say this.
vii) Ca casse les oreilles
To translate literally, this means “that is breaking my ears!”. Obviously a phrase uttered by a very exhausted and exasperated teacher which has been picked up by those little monsters. I feel for the teacher.
viii) J’ai le droit de faire ça!
Because you are never too young to start protesting for your rights, your little French Revolutionary will throw this around as he is insisting he has the right to keep playing instead of having a bath tonight.
ix) Pan pon
If you were not sure what “pan pon” is, in the head of your little French child, it is the sound that a fire truck makes. With the nasally n at the end of course.
Animal Sounds in French
And now on to animal sounds. I could do a whole separate post on this, but anyway here goes:
i) Cocorico! – Cock
It is the national symbol of France, so who is willing to argue with the French that the sound cocks make is not Cock-a-doddle-do but Co-co-ri-co? I’m not sure you are going to win that argument.
ii) Coin coin – Duck
No, that french duck is not saying quack, but rather coin coin with a nasally n at the end. Now you know
iii) Hi Han – Donkey
More nasally n’s here with the donkey, instead of the anglophone “hee-haw”. You also write the first part as “hi” instead of “hee” but they are both pronounced the same, since in French there are not really any words with “ee” in them.
iv) Meuh – Cow
That sweet little cow is not saying “mooo”, but rather more of a curt “meuh” with the h at the end. I suppose it could be different species of cows, but the milk still tastes as sweet, doesn’t it? (Unless you are lactose intolerant, of course!)
Any other words I’ve missed? Comment below and let me know!
¹ Featured Image: Photo by Matthew Henry from Shopify Burst
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