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    #1

    Old thread - "Don't you have school today?"

    Hello,

    on Google I found this thread (unfortunately it's closed):
    https://www.usingenglish.com/forum/t...-tag-questions

    The last post in there tells that the Conversation "Don't you have school today?" - "Yes, I do." means that the answering person has no school today. But most of the other threads tell that "Yes, I do" means there is school?

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    #2

    Re: Old thread - "Don't you have school today?"

    Old threads get closed when no one has posted in them for a while. I would ignore that post and go with the other answers.

    The thread has been re-opened and I have posted in it.

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    #3

    Re: Old thread - "Don't you have school today?"

    Quote Originally Posted by gameless View Post
    The last post in there tells that the Conversation "Don't you have school today?" - "Yes, I do." means that the answering person has no school today. But most of the other threads tell that "Yes, I do" means there is school?
    This is an issue I deal with regularly with my Chinese students and colleagues alike. A frequent example would be that they've come to class without eating breakfast, and complain they are hungry...

    Me: "You had breakfast this morning, right?"
    Student: "No, I didn't".
    Me: "You didn't eat anything?"
    Student: "Yes".

    Apparently, in Chinese (and I imagine this is true of other languages), you answer to agree or disagree with the speaker, not with the fact at hand. Since when I ask them, "You didn't eat anything?", they want to agree with me, because I am right, so they say, "Yes".

    So I explain it this way. When you answer, even if you only want to say, "yes" or "no", in your mind, say the whole answer as if you were just telling me something. Then, pick "yes" or "no" to agree with the statement.

    Yes, I did eat breakfast. "Did" is affirmative, so you must say "yes" to agree with that.
    No, I did not eat breakfast. "Did not" is negative, so you must say "no" to agree with that.

    Hopefully, in the context I gave, when I ask, "You didn't eat anything?", they will now think to themselves, "I did not eat anything", realize that "did not" is negative, and then actually say, "No", when they answer me.

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    #4

    Re: Old thread - "Don't you have school today?"

    Come and go can also cause trouble with speakers of some Asian languages.

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    #5

    Re: Old thread - "Don't you have school today?"

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    Old threads get closed when no one has posted in them for a while. I would ignore that post and go with the other answers.

    The thread has been re-opened and I have posted in it.
    Thank you, though it is still closed for me, somehow.

    Is this correct?
    Don't you have school today? / You don't have school today?
    Yes, I do. (means I have school today)
    No, I don't. (means I don't have school today)

  1. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Old thread - "Don't you have school today?"

    'Yes, I do' = 'Yes, I do have school today.'
    'No, I don't' = 'No, I don't have school today.'

    Quote Originally Posted by ChinaDan View Post
    Apparently, in Chinese (and I imagine this is true of other languages), you answer to agree or disagree with the speaker, not with the fact at hand.
    This Chinese guy confirms this.
    I am not a teacher.

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    #7

    Re: Old thread - "Don't you have school today?"

    Quote Originally Posted by gameless View Post
    The last post in there tells that the Conversation "Don't you have school today?" - "Yes, I do." means that the answering person has no school today. But most of the other threads tell that "Yes, I do" means there is school?
    I think the lesson is: only listen to teachers and native speakers.

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    #8

    Re: Old thread - "Don't you have school today?"

    We have had some non-native speakers and non-teachers over the years who have given some very sound answers. We have also had a few teachers who have had some strange ideas, and some native speakers who appear to know very little about their own language.
    Last edited by Piscean; 20-Sep-2016 at 00:46. Reason: typo

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    #9

    Re: Old thread - "Don't you have school today?"

    I think the signatures with "I am not a teacher" are a very good idea.

    Somehow only my question hasn't been answered.
    Are both examples correct?

    1. example:
    You don't have school today?
    -Yes, I do. (means I have school today)
    -No, I don't. (means I don't have school today)

    2. example:
    Don't you have school today?
    -Yes, I do. (means I have school today)
    -No, I don't. (means I don't have school today)

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    #10

    Re: Old thread - "Don't you have school today?"

    Quote Originally Posted by gameless View Post
    I think the signatures with "I am not a teacher" are a very good idea.

    Somehow only my question hasn't been answered.
    Are both examples correct?

    1. example:
    You don't have school today?
    -Yes, I do. (means I have school today)
    -No, I don't. (means I don't have school today)

    2. example:
    Don't you have school today?
    -Yes, I do. (means I have school today)
    -No, I don't. (means I don't have school today)
    Both are correct.

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