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English must be difficult for non native speakers

英語を勉強している方のためのフォーラムです。練習のために英語の文章を投稿してもかまわなく、英語の文法・語彙に関する質問をしてもけっこうです。

English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby crowfeather » Wed 05.24.2006 8:47 pm

Japanese is the first foreign language I have attemped to learn.
To learn it I must loosely translate Japanese into English and visa versa.
It has been a real eye opener.

In my limited study of Japanese I realize that it is amazing the way we cobble together words to express ideas in English . We understand each other, but a person learning English must be very frustrated.

Not a day passes without hearing or reading something that I am sure a non native English speaker would find unexplainable in their language.

Today I saw a sign that read, We now carry bus passes. Carry?

A native speaker of English knows that they mean they have them in their store, but to use the word carry? Wow

We say a store "carrys inventory" coming from the idea of carrying the number of products in their inventory ledgers.

I applaud anyone who has mastered English as a second language!

Barbara
Last edited by crowfeather on Wed 05.24.2006 9:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby tanuki » Wed 05.24.2006 9:40 pm

crowfeather wrote:
We say a store "carrys inventory"


carries

It seems not only non-native English speakers have problems ;).

Hehe, just kidding, of course. English has the most unpredictable ortography and pronunciation I know.

Ghoti :D.
Last edited by tanuki on Wed 05.24.2006 9:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
僕の下手な日本語を直してください。
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RE: English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby hamsterfreak4evr » Wed 05.24.2006 9:44 pm

tanuki wrote:

Ghoti :D.


tehehe...fish....B)
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RE: English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby b4d0m3n » Wed 05.24.2006 10:03 pm

English isn't terribly difficult if you are immersed in it from a young age. I was ten when I came to Australia from Poland, and I'm majoring in Creative and Professional Communication. But, that said, all languages have their bizarre quirks.
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RE: English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby hamsterfreak4evr » Wed 05.24.2006 10:23 pm

that would make sense.B)
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RE: English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby bombush » Thu 05.25.2006 12:35 am

English is one of the easiest languages. The pronunciation is something you have to get used to but the rest is very easy. There are many languages that everyone hides in fear from. For example my mother tongue - Czech. It has the most insane grammatical structure and is the most illogical language I've ever seen. They say that japanese is 100x simplified czech... You got the idea.:)
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RE: English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby queshaw » Thu 05.25.2006 1:49 am

I think "I used to" most seem very odd. English does seem really tough to me, compared to minimal exposure to Spanish, German, Japanese and Thai.
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RE: English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby Nathalie » Thu 05.25.2006 5:31 am

I don't think English is a that hard language. Compared to for example French, verb conjugation is so heavenly easy (I study both of them at school, so, yeah :D). However I have to confess that I didn't know the 'carry' expression, although maybe I might have guessed the meaning from the context if I were in the actual situation.
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RE: English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby Reno » Thu 05.25.2006 6:22 am

Im dutch (also said to be one of the harderst languages but I doubt it) and I learned English when I was 5 through movies (All hail the television!) and so it just feels natural for me, I guess im just as good in english as a native speaker (I can even think in english, now thats the ultimate proof:p)
Good luck with studying everybody and I hope one day I will be able to pick it back up.

Until then, a nice goodbye from me to you ;)
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RE: English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby Nathalie » Thu 05.25.2006 6:36 am

Reno wrote:
Im dutch (also said to be one of the harderst languages but I doubt it) and I learned English when I was 5 through movies (All hail the television!) and so it just feels natural for me, I guess im just as good in english as a native speaker (I can even think in english, now thats the ultimate proof:p)


Well I'm Belgian (Dutch speaking) and I have a hard time to believe Dutch is one of the hardest languages. It's just so... easy. :D

Oh and by the way, no offense, but shouldn't the 'easy' in your signature be 'easily'? ;)
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RE: English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby Infidel » Thu 05.25.2006 6:40 am

Generally languages are relatively difficult not absolutely difficult. English might be very easy for someone that speaks Spanish, but very difficult for someone that speaks Arabic.

Here's a nice article that shows languages rated in difficulty vs. English. Czech is actually a category 3 language. Meaning it is easier than Japanese but harder than Greek for an English speaker to learn. Note the ratings are based on the study time required for each level of fluency.

Remember these ratings are only relative. What languages are difficult for you is completely determined by your mother tongue, not this chart. But if your main tongue is English, then this chart is very accurate.
なるほど。
さっぱりわからん。
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RE: English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby Furansujin » Thu 05.25.2006 7:51 am

Nathalie wrote:
I don't think English is a that hard language. Compared to for example French, verb conjugation is so heavenly easy (I study both of them at school, so, yeah ).


Even for french our conjugation sometime seems to be very complicated!!! i think french is one of the language who have the most different conjugations! :@
English is easier than french (grammar et conjugation)!

Absolutely agree with Infidel, the capacity of integrating a foreign language depends of your native language.
I think it will be less difficult for a german to learn dutch than for a chinese or a russian.
The different alphabets are for something in it as well!

It depend of the immersion level too.
Reno's example is interesting. He said that he learned english when he was young with the television. If I'm not wrong, I can remember that english and american's movies aren't in Dutsh but in original version. (and most, they learned it at school earlier than in france...). It is a good way to make sentence construction and songs become natural!
Go to Amsterdam and you'll notice that most of people can speak english very well! In Paris or Berlin, they would look at you with high open eyes!! :o


And to come back to the topic: I would have understand carry in is basical meaning! Isn't the particularity of US english for something in this lack of understanding?

Notice that all languages are in a constant evolution, even english!
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RE: English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby SaigoNoBan » Thu 05.25.2006 9:43 am

あのう、Infidelさん、リンクを載せて下さいませんか。

:Dあの記事はすごく面白そうですから;)読みたいですよ!

英語は、文法がかなり易しいと思います。勿論ドイツ語やフランス語やギリシャ語より簡単ですね。でも、多分日本語の文法の方が簡単でしょうね。他面、単語は英語が西洋の言語の平均以上にあると思います。ラテン語からの言葉も、アングロサクャ東黷ゥらのもあるんですね。それに、Phrasal Verbsがいつも弱いでした、私。でも、単語の言葉は、勿論ギリシャ語と東洋の言語の法が豊かですね。
最後に、発音は、中国語以外、英語が世界の一番難しいかもしれません〜だけでも、これが私の意見ですね。
とうとう戻ってきました!^_^ お待たせしました
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RE: English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby bombush » Thu 05.25.2006 10:08 am

Infidel wrote:
Czech is actually a category 3 language. Meaning it is easier than Japanese but harder than Greek for an English speaker to learn.

Wow. That sure surprises me. I always thought that a language with seven grammatical cases, where every second word is an exception from grammar rules would be a total hell compared to Japanese where you basically just attach some particles. Interesting...
It would be nice if there was someone with experience from learning Czech here, but those people are REALLY rare.

I think that the main reason why does English seem so easy is that we're sorrounded by it everywhere we go. Very big influence on my English skills had also PC games. Especially "Wing Commander" which was a space-sim interactive movie with almost three hours of film footage. It was and still is my favourite game, although I'm no longer a PC player.
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RE: English must be difficult for non native speakers

Postby clay » Thu 05.25.2006 10:12 am

Maybe it is this link:
http://www.nvtc.gov/lotw/months/november/learningExpectations.html

Notice Japanese has an *

The * means:
* Languages preceded by asterisks are typically somewhat more difficult for native English speakers to learn to speak and read than other languages in the same category.
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