⚛️French Level 4, Activity 07: L’énergie nucléaire en France / Nuclear Energy in France (Online)

Three nuclear plant workers discuss in front of three nuclear power reactors
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Description: In this activity, students will learn more about nuclear energy use in France and practice sharing their opinions using the subjunctive tense.
Semantic Topics: nuclear energy, energy, environment, opinions, subjunctive, l’énergie nucléaire, l’environnement, subjonctif

Products: Nuclear energy

Practices: Using nuclear energy sources

Perspectives: In France, it is seen as a positive for the environment to use nuclear based energy. 70% of France’s electricity is produced by nuclear generators!

NCSSFL-ACTFL World Readiness Standards:

  • Standard 1.1: Students engage in conversations or correspondence in French to provide and obtain information, express feelings and emotions, and exchange opinions.
  • Standard 1.2: Students understand and interpret spoken and written French on a variety of topics.
  • Standard 2.2: Students demonstrate an understanding of the relationship between the products and perspectives of the cultures of the francophone world.
  • Standard 3.1: Students reinforce and further their knowledge of other disciplines through French.

Idaho State Content Standards:

  • COMM 1: Interact with others in the target language and gain meaning from interactions in the target language.
  • COMM 2: Discover meaning from what is heard, read or viewed on a variety of topics in the target language.
  • CLTR 2: Investigate, explain and reflect on the relationship between the products and perspectives of the cultures studied in the target language.
  • CLTR 2.1: Analyze the significance of a product (art, music, literature, etc…) in a target culture.
  • CONN 1: Build, reinforce, and expand knowledge of other disciplines while using the target language to develop critical thinking/creative problem solving skills.

NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements

  • I can discuss renewable and non-renewable energy sources.
  • I can share my opinion on nuclear energy.
  • I can propose alternative renewable energy sources to replace nuclear energy.


1. Begin the activity by opening the Google presentation and introducing the Can-Do statements.


2. Ask the students these questions:

  • Connaissez-vous des sources d’énergies renouvelables ? Donnez-nous quelques exemples. (Do you know any renewable energy sources? Give some examples.)
  • Connaissez-vous des sources d’énergies non-renouvelables ? Donnez-nous quelques exemples. (Do you know any non-renewable energy sources? Give some examples.)

Main Activity

Le débat

1. Split the students into teams and assign them a debate question. *If the class is small, you can have 1 student per team.

Aujourd’hui nous allons faire un débat. Je vais vous donner un(e) partenaire et une question. Pour chaque question, il y aura 2 équipes. 


2. Here are the 3 questions:

  • À votre avis, l’énergie nucléaire est-elle bonne ou mauvaise ? (In your opinion, is nuclear energy good or bad?)
    • Equipe 1 – L’énergie nucléaire est bonne.
    • Equipe 2 – L’énergie nucléaire est mauvaise.
  • Quel type d’énergie renouvelable choisiriez-vous pour remplacer l’énergie nucléaire en France ? Pourquoi ? (What type of renewable energy would you choose to replace nuclear energy in France? Why?)

*Example for the 2 different teams:

    • Equipe 1: énergie éolienne (Wind energy)
    • Equipe 2: énergie solaire (Solar energy)
  • D’après vous, les Etats-Unis devraient-ils augmenter leur production d’énergie nucléaire ? (In your opinion, should the US increase their production of nuclear energy?)
    • Equipe 1 – Les Etats-Unis devraient augmenter leur production d’énergie nucléaire.
    • Equipe 2 – Les Etats-Unis ne devraient pas augmenter leur production d’énergie nucléaire.

*NOTE: Remind the students to try and formulate their responses using the subjunctive.

Essayez d’utiliser le subjonctif en créant vos réponses !


3. Here is a document with prompting phrases that use the subjunctive: Prompting Phrases.


4. Send this document to the students using the chat.


5. Share Slide 7 with the students before starting the debates. On this slide is background information that they can use to create their arguments.

Voilà quelques informations de base que vous pouvez utiliser pour créer vos arguments.

  • If necessary, students can use their phones to research information or make up their own statistics. (Si nécessaire, vous pouvez utiliser votre portable pour rechercher plus d’information.)


6. Give each student/team 4-5 mins to make their initial argument. Then switch to the other student/team.

Chaque équipe aura  4-5 minutes pour présenter leur premier argument.


7. Then give each side 2-3 minutes to form a rebuttal in response to the opposing teams argument.

Puis, vous aurez 2-3 minutes pour formuler votre réfutation (counter-argument).

  • If the group has 2 or more students, you can send them to breakout rooms to discuss their rebuttal arguments.


8. Finally, have them present their rebuttal arguments in 4-5 mins.

Enfin, chaque équipe aura 4-5 minutes pour présenter votre réfutation.


9. Repeat steps 2-4 until all groups have gotten to debate.

Répétez ces étapes jusqu’à ce que toutes les équipes avaient eu l’opportunite de faire leurs débats.

*Encourage students who aren’t debating to actively listen until it is their turn.

Si vous ne débattez pas, écoutez activement jusqu’à votre tour.



Ask the following question(s) to finish the activity:

  • Existe-t-il des exemples de sources d’énergie renouvelables dans votre état d’origine? (Are there examples of renewable energy sources in your home state?)

End of Activity:

  • Can-Do statement check-in… “Where are we?”
  • Read can-do statements and have students evaluate their confidence.
  • Encourage students to be honest in their self evaluation
  • Pay attention, and try to use feedback for future activities!

NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements

  • I can discuss renewable and non-renewable energy sources.
  • I can share my opinion on nuclear energy.
  • I can propose alternative renewable energy sources to replace nuclear energy.

Cultural Resources

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Let's Chat! French Copyright © 2022 by Alexandre Bourque-Labbé; Amber Hoye; Antoine Abjean; Cassy Ponga; Emily Blackburn; Jasmine Wall; Jorge Corea; Josepha Sowanou; Justin Snyder; Lily Nelson; Manon Pretesesille; Michael Quiblier; Mimi Fahnstrom; Olivier Roy; Rylie Wieseler; Samantha Lind; Sharon Westbrook; and Tori Fisher is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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