Welcome to the forum, SipGreenTea.
I am from Poland and I don`t know English as you are talking here about. In Poland, before Poland came to EU, Russian language was like a second and none knew English. After that they put English like a second language and then kids at schools started learn this language. In fact young Polish people, at this moment, know English but older not really. Many Polish gone to UK and maybe that`s why you are thinking that Polish know English so well. They have to speak over there, they have to understand and they are making life in UK. So, they know English because their life is with real English, with native speakers. Also, in my opinion, Polish programmers are good with English.
As you can see I am here to learn English. I have problem with English all over, with grammar, vocabulary, with tenses :( Why? Because I had never English at school. Because I am from old system. I hope that this forum helps me to improve my English because this language develops very fast over here^^
Welcome to the forum, SipGreenTea.
Hello, SipGreenTea! Welcome to UsingEnglish.
I think even before 2004 (Polish accession to the EU), most children studied English at school. It started changing much earlier, even before the fall of communism. In the 1990s, English was taught in most schools.
Thank you for greeting.
Well, at this moment, what I can do over here it is reading all forum`s subjects. Over and over. I hope that one day I will able to ask about some grammar things
On the other hand, there's a huge amount here, and trying to read it all first is a daunting prospect; you can get value from a library without 'ploughing through' it all first [=reading all the books laboriously*].
PS I just thought - and this is a feature of my posts, so be warned - that the Latin for 'to plough' is laborare.
Last edited by BobK; 18-Jun-2012 at 12:47. Reason: Added PS
Well, thank you for the next lesson of English to me. I didn`t know the words wise, to lurk, amount, daunting, feature. It is so depressed to read something and don`t understand it and so excited to get it. In my opinion learning of any language (teaching as well) has to be in a multifarious was; reading, listening to, speaking, translation etc., to don`t get bored.
I saw similliar opinion about people from Sweden and Norway. And it was suggested that the matter is in how they watch foreign movies, i.e. do they keep the original audio track and watch with subtitles or do they dub movies into their native language. In Scandinavia they do the first way, so they hear english speech all the time from the TV.
How do you watch foreign movies in Poland? Are they completely dubbed into Polish or is original audiotrack retained?
What might be interesting is the fact, that this dubbing is usually done by one person only, mostly a male who dubs both actors and actresses. In the CZ, we often make fun of this so called dubbing, because ours is very different, dare I say better.
As for the language acquirement, my view is that this is one of the things that play a role in the penetration of English and its level in various countries. On the other hand, there are counterexamples, such as Germany, where the dubbing is similar to ours (that is no original can be heard, and each character in a movie or a TV series has their dubber counterpart), and yet the English knowledge of Germans is grater and more profound than in Poland or the Czech Republic.
Please note that I'm not a teacher.