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    • Join Date: Sep 2006
    • Posts: 150

    trilingual confusion

    I've just started working with a Spanish student who also speaks fairly fluent French. Her English is of intermediate level, but here's the thing:
    When speaking, she uses a kind of Franglais, peppering her sentences with French words.

    (I understand the problem because I do it myself when trying to speak French, except that I end up speaking in EspancÚs.)

    It will probably be less of a problem when she's more accustomed to chatting in English, but I wondered if there are any tricks a trilingual person can use to prevent their languages interfering with one another?

  1. Casiopea's Avatar

    • Join Date: Sep 2003
    • Posts: 12,970

    Re: trilingual confusion

    Time and timing are the tricks: opportunity and exposure, as well as speed -slow it down.

    I'm a native English speaker, I also speak other languages, like Japanese and French and the list goes on, and now I'm learning Chinese. I get by OK in China, until that is I have to speed up the conversation, like when I'm in a taxi telling the driver to take a right or stop here and I blurt out Japanese. A similar thing happened years ago when I was in Mexico. While shopping in the markets or ordering food at a restuarant, where all is calm and relaxed, Spanish came easily, but when I had to think on my feet quickly, French came blurting out of my mouth. Hmm.

    Try to get the student to slow down enough to take time to think about what s/he is saying. Timming and Time are the keys.

    All the best.

    • Join Date: Sep 2006
    • Posts: 150

    Re: trilingual confusion

    Thanks. I'll try that.

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