Pouvoir Conjugation in French

Here is a lesson along with some free printable French grammar worksheets to help you conjugate the verb pouvoir in all tenses such as imparfait, passé composé, présent and le futur!
pouvoir blog feature image

How to Conjugate the Verb Pouvoir in French:

Pouvoir is one of the most commonly used verbs in French. It is also a verb that can be used in a variety of ways, so it is a very important verb o understand in order to become fluent in French!

How to use the verb pouvoir in French:

1. Can/ to be able to

The verb pouvoir expresses the ability to do something and can be used as the French equivalent of the verbs can and to be able to. Just like it’s English equivalent, the verb pouvoir is always followed by the infinitive form of a verb.

Je peux jouer de la guitare.        

 I can play guitar.

Je peux courir à 10km/h.             

I am able to run at 10 km/h.

marathon run clipart

2. Permission

You can use the verb pouvoir to ask permission just like you would use the verb can and may in English.

Puis-je aller à la salle de bain?                 

May I go to the bathroom?

Est-ce que je peux emprunter ton crayon?  

Can I borrow your pencil?

bathroom sign clipart

3. Possibility

You can use the verb pouvoir to indicate that something might or might not happen. It shows uncertainty. 

Je vais peut-être arriver en retard.     

I might arrive late.

Il se peut que je ne puisse pas manger. 

I may not be able to eat.

Je peux partir vers 5h.       

I might leave around 5 pm.

alarm clock clipart

Conjugating Pouvoir in French:

Pronouns

Imparfait

Passé composé

Je (I)

pouvais

ai pu

Tu (you)

pouvais

as pu

Il/elle/on

(He/she/ it/ we)

pouvait

a pu

Nous (we)

pouvions

avons pu

Vous (you)

pouviez

avez pu

Ils/elles (they)

pouvaient

ont pu

Pronouns

Présent

Futur proche

Futur simple

Je (I)

peux

vais pouvoir

pourrai

Tu (you)

peux

vas pouvoir

pourras

Il/elle/on

(He/she/ it/ we)

peut

va pouvoir

pourra

Nous (we)

pouvons

allons pouvoir

pourrons

Vous (you)

pouvez

allez pouvoir

pourrez

Ils/elles (they)

peuvent

vont pouvoir

pourront

Free printable practice worksheets to learn how to use the verb Pouvoir in French:

Now that you have learned more about the verb pouvoir, test your knowledge with our practice worksheets!

Worksheet 1

Worksheet 2

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