Tense French opens up with a brief rendering of the Marseillaise and the display of a BBC Micro Tricolour. This seems now to be the conventional start to any French language tutorial in BBC software. Witness the Microaid "French Abroad". This is a verbs only pack and it covers twenty common verbs. The two tapes supplied provide all the tenses, conditional and present subjunctive. Quite enough to be going on with.
The options are quite impressive. As well as testing on the various parts of speech, with pronoun prompts, ils... nous... etc, it also tests on meanings. The main menu controls the current tense and whatever other test or list option you choose, this is overriding. An especially sensible feature in the English/French or French/English meanings test, is the listing of the twenty possibilities rather than just leaving it to memory.
The screen presentation is blue or red on white and is extremely clear and uncluttered, a definite plus. Although the documentation gives clear warning, I still rather resented the fact that the computer would not accept upper case entries. For younger children there is a nice line in joyous sounds for successful attempts and the menu offers the choice to change the volume setting.
The function keys are set up to produce lower case vowels with the appropriate accents and children could have fun producing an overlay for these keys. All in all, a flexible and friendly introduction to French verbs and their tense forms.