Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 28
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    82
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Starting a new "native-speaker-only expressions" t

    Dear teachers, I have a little suggestion and maybe you can think about it. Could you consider starting a new thread named something like "native-speaker-only expressions", where you guys may put some expressions that you think may be unlikely to be heard from a non-native-speaker? I browsed the forum and found some expressions like that. For example,

    It would seem that a person's political affiliation would have nothing whatsoever to do with that person's participation in a sport.

    I think the blue parts are not something that ESL learners are likely to say. As for me, for example, I may say "It seems that..." and would not put a "whatsoever" behind "nothing".

    On the other hand, non-native-speakers may say something that you guys are not likely to say. For example, non-native-speakers tend to use "I think"(at least to me) when they want to express their opinion on something. I find that native speakers do not use "I think" that often. Could you also put some alternatives to that kind of "I think" expressions in the thread(maybe the thread name needs to be changed then), so we could use them sometimes for a change but not constantly saying "I think"?

    The question is how to define whether a particular expression is "native-speakers-only" or "non-natives-only"? I think( :wink: ) since you guys have answered so many questions on the forum, you may have had a good understanding of that. Then, how to single out a particular expressions since there are so many in your minds? You may pick any one of the posts, see some English used by non-native-speakers and then add something to the thread. You may do that once a while, when you could afford the time.

    I figure this thread may be helpful for ESL learners. Please think about it. It would be very nice to know your opinion on that.
    :wink:

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    1,814
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    I agree. What can you think of to replace the following phrases?

    (a) I think
    (b) sth gets me confused
    (c) Thank you very much.(What else can I use to reponse to gratitude?)
    (d) Now I understand/see.


    "I think" those 3 phrases are commomly used by learners here.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    1,814
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    "I think" I myself use a lot of "I think"s in Chinese too. LOL! I have observed an conversation run between two Chinese today, they spoke 47 times "I think" in one hour.

    I was just bored at the topic, so I counted.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    82
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by blacknomi
    "I think" I myself use a lot of "I think"s in Chinese too. LOL! I have observed an conversation run between two Chinese today, they spoke 47 times "I think" in one hour.

    I was just bored at the topic, so I counted.

    Wow, you counted the times that they used "I think" in one hour? That is kind of amazing, though it was a good way to relieve the boredom of a dull conversation. Thanks to your story. I think I might use this technique sometime. :wink:

    The problem is, we tend to use "I think" to interpret every "I think"(in Chinese). Under some circumstances, I think( :wink: ) "I believe/assume/understand" can substitute for "I think". However, one may go too far in avoiding the use of "I think", because he or she may want to make his/her language not so "plain". :wink:

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    82
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Also, as non-native-speakers, we may use too much of certain sentence structures--which I think is even "worse" than the frequent use of "I think". For example, we use "it is important for me to do sth." a lot. It is idiomatic, but it could be boring when you use it several times.
    :wink:

  6. #6
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Philippines
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    43,297
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Starting a new "native-speaker-only expressions&quo

    Quote Originally Posted by Cooler

    It would seem that a person's political affiliation would have nothing whatsoever to do with that person's participation in a sport.

    I think the blue parts are not something that ESL learners are likely to say. As for me, for example, I may say "It seems that..." and would not put a "whatsoever" behind "nothing".

    On the other hand, non-native-speakers may say something that you :wink:
    I was in email contact with a Japanese ex-student about this recently- she is revising for an exam here, she's taking a Master's in London, and finds our use of modals in writing difficult to grasp. This kind of expression doesn't come naturally to her, so she is having to learn how to do it because she knows she will need it in her exam. While you can get by without such structures, they are important in certain areas, mostly formal writing, in fact, many native speakers would rarely if ever write like that. This sort of style is important for those students who need to write formal language to a very high standard, the others can breathe easily.

    There is also the exam factor- students taking certain exams need to know some of these structures, like inversion (Seldom ahve I seen such a sight...). In my experience, the vast majority forget all knowledge of inversion within minutes of receiving their certificates.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    1,814
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Starting a new "native-speaker-only expressions&

    Quote Originally Posted by tdol
    There is also the exam factor- students taking certain exams need to know some of these structures, like inversion (Seldom ahve I seen such a sight...). In my experience, the vast majority forget all knowledge of inversion within minutes of receiving their certificates.
    It is very true and I think the timing would be earlier.

    We've swallowed the whole GRE or GMAT reference book to get an entrance permission. Once we got the permission, there starts a process of forgetting. :wink:

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    12,970
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by blacknomi
    I agree. What can you think of to replace the following phrases?

    (a) I think
    (b) sth gets me confused
    (c) Thank you very much.(What else can I use to reponse to gratitude?)
    (d) Now I understand/see.


    "I think" those 3 phrases are commomly used by learners here.
    (a) In most situations, native speakers don't usually use an intro like "I think". They just come out and say whatever it is they are thinking.)

    Pat: What do you think about the new boss?
    Sam: She's OK.

    (b) X confuses me; I'm so confused by X; X has me terribly confused; I can't get my head around X; If someone doesn't give me the answer to X, my head is going to explode!; I'm having (some/a great deal of) trouble understanding X; I can't seem to understand what X means/ how X functions/ how to use X; I just can't get it!; I don't get it.

    (c) Thanks; Thanx; Appreciatively; With thanks; With appreciation; With great appreciation; With great thanks.

    (d) I get it!; I got it; I see it now; I see the light (at the end of the tunnel); It's clear now; It's crystal clear now.

    :D

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    1,814
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Dear Cas,

    You just make my day before I'm going to hit the hay. (Does it rhyme?)

    :D

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    12,970
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by blacknomi
    Dear Cas,

    You just make my day before I'm going to hit the hay. (Does it rhyme?)

    :D
    It's so sweet. :D

    Try,

    You ' just ' now ' made ' my ' day (6)
    be ' fore ' I ' hit ' the ' hay (6)

    8)

Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •