Celebrating Bastille Day

Flora Michti
21st June 2019
french flag flying for bastille day

Lesson ideas and activities to introduce learners to the history behind the French national holiday

Celebrated each year on 14 July, Bastille Day, known more formally as la Fête Nationale, commemorates the storming of the Bastille. This was one of the most important events in the French Revolution and ultimately led to the execution of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette.

As such, we’ve hand-picked a selection of our favourite Bastille Day-inspired resources to help you to examine its significance with your pupils.

Check out our MFL resources highlights for more French, German and Spanish resource collections

La Fete Nationale Wordsearch

Wordsearch on Bastille Day vocab

By aspidistra

French Revolution CLIL resources 2/2

Resources to teach the French revolution in French to Y9. If you are interested in CLIL, there are a lot more resources (in other languages too) on http://clil4teachers.pbworks.com, where these were originally posted (and where I took a couple of powerpoints from and adapted them, so I do not claim all work as mine). The tes only lets me upload 20 resources at a time so the rest of the resources (including the lesson plans) are on http://www.tes.co.uk/teaching-resource/French-Revolution-CLIL-resources-1-2-6108685/requestAction/update/.
By noemie

Bastille Day Quiz

This resource contains a 40 question PowerPoint quiz on Bastille Day ( La Fête Nationale) and the French Revolution. Bastille Day is France's National Day and takes place on 14th July.

The quiz can be used for individuals or teams. There is a sheet for individuals/teams to record answers. The answers to the questions can be found by clicking on the flag image on the bottom right- hand corner of each slide. There are three multiple choice answers.

Sample questions include:

- On what date is Bastille Day?
- What is Bastille Day known as in France?
- In what year did the storming of the Bastille take place?
- What was the Bastille?
- Who was the King of France at the time of the storming of the Bastille?
- Who was King Louis XVI’s wife?

You may also be interested in:

Bastille Day Presentation

This resource contains a fully editable and informative 60-slide PowerPoint presentation on Bastille Day and the French Revolution which takes place on 14th July.

Bastille Day Puzzle Pack- Differentiated Word Searches and Anagrams

Save money and buy all three resources in a bundle at a discounted rate:

Bastille Day Bundle

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By Krazikas

Bastille Day Lesson

A lesson all about Bastille Day including a range of activities. It is presented in English, so it is suitable for low-ability or younger pupils. It could also be used during form time for cultural awareness. Includes:
-Presentation of facts with questions mixed in to check understanding (these could be answered on mini-whiteboards).
-Listen to the Marseillaise and put the French lyrics into the right order (first verse, chorus and second verse). Then match to the English translations (flashcards are included, plus link to anthem.)
-Two truths and one lie: pupils must decide which statement about France is false/myth (again mini-whiteboards would be good for this!)
-Word race: use dictionaries to find translations for all the vocabulary.
By Alexandra Stokes

La Revolution Francaise - The French Revolution - Bastille Day

10 slides on the French Revolution to explain what it is.

- Brainstorming to start the lesson
- Listening activity : video 'The French revolution in a nutshell' to understand what happened on the 14th July 1789. the students answer the 3 questions What ? When ? Where ?
- Class activity : What is la Marseillaise ? Listen to an extract of the song and fill in the gaps in the lyrics
- Why is the flag blue white red ?
- Writing activity (GCSE training) - Describe the picture : Delacroix painting, la Liberte guidant le peuple. Recap of the vocabulry in the foreground/background etc.
- Quizlet vocabulary practice - the students can scan the QR code to land on the quizlet page and practice the vocab. Print the flashcards from the website to practice the vocabulary in class.
By Cynthia-G

French Teaching Resources. La Fête Nationale. Bastille Day. Le 14 juillet. La Révolution Française.

This lesson teaches students about the French Revolution and how a Fête Nationale/ Bastille Day/ Le 14 juillet is celebrated. It uses colourful slides, images and animations, 3 YouTube links, matching cards and karaoke! A fun end of term lesson!

Slide 2 states the objective: To learn facts and vocabulary related to La Révolution Française and La Fête Nationale!

All: Will learn 7 new facts and French words.
Most: Will learn 9 .
Some: Will learn 10+ .

Slide 3 presents the following vocabulary:
Le clergé
La noblesse
Le Tiers-État
Le roi
La reine
La Bastille (une prison)
La guillotine
Le Tricolore

It is differentiated: All: Match the French and the picture (there are some English words to help!).
Most: Perfect Pronunciation Challenge!
Some: Share what you know about La Révolution Française.

Slides 4 – 11 show each word with images and animations so you can drill the new vocabulary.
Slide 12 has all the pictures for each new word.
Then there is graded questioning:
Slides 13 – 20 show an image and provide 2 possible answers.
Slides 21- 30 are “What’s missing?” slides.

Slide 30 is to be used in conjunction with the French worksheet and the YouTube video (in English) The French Revolution In a Nutshell (2 mins 50 secs) which is a cartoon-style clear and concise summary – really fun!

Then the students watch the video:
All: Complete Exercise A.
Most: AND Exercise B.
Some: AND note down any additional facts and French vocabulary.
* The answers are on the first 2 pages of the PDF.

Extract examples of questions:
A. Cochez les choses que vous voyez:
le Tricolore un canon le monde Le clergé la noblesse le Tiers-État


B. Choisissez la bonne réponse:

1. Avant la Révolution il y avait trois rangs :
A. La reine, le roi et le Tiers-État.
B. Le clergé, la noblesse et le Tiers-État.
C. Le roi, le clergé et la noblesse.


Slide 32 states: Pour fêter La Fête Nationale il y a des défilés militaires. Le défilé le plus célèbre a lieu sur l’Avenue des Champs-Élysées.
Le soir il y a des feux d’artifice, des concerts et des bals.
And there is a link to an English language commentary of Bastille Day celebrations on YouTube (1 min 34 secs).

Slide 33 explains the Marseillaise and sets out the task (using English and French matching cards):
Slide 34 has the Marseillaise in English and French.

Slide 35 is a Marseillaise Karaoke slide and links to YouTube.

Finally Slide 36 provides time for reflection.

I hope you enjoy these resources!
By rachelburman

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