Sentence error

Status
Not open for further replies.

paul123

New member
Joined
Jan 15, 2013
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
English
Home Country
England
Current Location
England
Hi,

I'm currently applying for a TEFL course, however there is one particular area that I am struggling with. The question is; "Identify which of the following sentences contains errors and correct them. Then explain why you think the speaker made the mistakes in each case" The sentence examples that are provided are;

1) We've lived here since three years.
2)It's high time we finish this.
3) He asked me what can he do for me.
4)The hotel's comfortable and the weather's attractive.
5) There was far less people at the match than I expected.
6)If I was you, I'd get more sleep.

If anyone could help identifying the errors, but more importantly help explain why the speaker would have made those mistakes, it would be very much appreciated.
 

5jj

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Oct 14, 2010
Member Type
Retired English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
Czech Republic
Current Location
Czech Republic
Welcome to the forum, paul.

Sorry, but if this is part of a test you need to complete before you are accepted on the course, then it would not be right for us to help you. The course providers want to know what you can do, not what we can do.
 

bhaisahab

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Apr 12, 2008
Member Type
Retired English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
England
Current Location
Ireland
Hi,

I'm currently applying for a TEFL course, however there is one particular area that I am struggling with. The question is; "Identify which of the following sentences contains errors and correct them. Then explain why you think the speaker made the mistakes in each case" The sentence examples that are provided are;

1) We've lived here since three years.
2)It's high time we finish this.
3) He asked me what can he do for me.
4)The hotel's comfortable and the weather's attractive.
5) There was far less people at the match than I expected.
6)If I was you, I'd get more sleep.

If anyone could help identifying the errors, but more importantly help explain why the speaker would have made those mistakes, it would be very much appreciated.

Quite honestly, paul, as a native English speaker you should be able to recognise some, if not all, of the errors.
 

paul123

New member
Joined
Jan 15, 2013
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
English
Home Country
England
Current Location
England
Dear bhaisahab,

I am able to identify the errors within the sentences, however what I wanted help with is explaining why someone who is learning english would make these errors.

Also 5jj, I didn't want anyone to answer the question, but rather help with the question. As the option is 'Ask a teacher' I thought this would be perfectly acceptable, as a teacher is someone who is meant to help and guide students when they are struggling with a subject. Is this not the case?
 

bhaisahab

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Apr 12, 2008
Member Type
Retired English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
England
Current Location
Ireland
Dear bhaisahab,

I am able to identify the errors within the sentences, however what I wanted help with is explaining why someone who is learning english would make these errors.

Also 5jj, I didn't want anyone to answer the question, but rather help with the question. As the option is 'Ask a teacher' I thought this would be perfectly acceptable, as a teacher is someone who is meant to help and guide students when they are struggling with a subject. Is this not the case?

Take #4 as an example. The writer has misused the word "attractive". Have you thought about (or looked up) synonyms of that word?
 

emsr2d2

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 28, 2009
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
Do you speak any foreign languages? If so, think about the kinds of errors you make with that language and consider if they're the same kind of errors learners make in English.
Do you already know English learners and talk to them regularly? That will give you a great idea of some of the errors they make and many of them are quite good at explaining why they chose the word or the construction they did.
 

emsr2d2

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 28, 2009
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
As this thread is more about a prospective teacher talking to established teachers, I'm going to move it to the "Teaching English" section and it can continue in some vein there.
 

5jj

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Oct 14, 2010
Member Type
Retired English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
Czech Republic
Current Location
Czech Republic
Also 5jj, I didn't want anyone to answer the question, but rather help with the question. As the option is 'Ask a teacher' I thought this would be perfectly acceptable, as a teacher is someone who is meant to help and guide students when they are struggling with a subject. Is this not the case?
We do our best to help learners with their problems. We don't help people get higher marks on assignments. bhaisahab and ems have given you a couple of pointers. We can't do much more. As I said, the course providers want to know what you can do, not what we can do. You can use refernce books and the internet, unless you have been told not to.
 

paul123

New member
Joined
Jan 15, 2013
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
English
Home Country
England
Current Location
England
Hi emsr2d2,

Unfortunately I don't any foreign languages, hence why I am struggling with the question. Also I do not know anyone that is currently learning English so I am unable to ask them for advice. Does anyone know of any websites or literature that I could use to research this area in more depth?
 

emsr2d2

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 28, 2009
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
You could start by Googling "common errors in English" and have a good look through those sites. Some just list the errors and their corrections, but some give the most common explanations for those errors too.
 

5jj

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Oct 14, 2010
Member Type
Retired English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
Czech Republic
Current Location
Czech Republic
I googled Learner Errors English and found a few helpful sites.
 

paul123

New member
Joined
Jan 15, 2013
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
English
Home Country
England
Current Location
England
Ok right, so I have attempted to answer the questions and the reasons why a student learning English would make them. Would anyone be able to look over them and tell me if I'm on the right lines or where I am going wrong. I hope this is acceptable as it is not anyone that is telling me the answers but rather reviewing and guiding me on areas that I may have missed. The numbers refer to the corresponding questions;

1) The mistake here is 'since', it should be 'for'. In a language like French, Depuis means both for and since, so when learning English there can be confusion because both have different connotations.
2) I would say that this needs to be "It's high time we finished this" referring to the past tense. There is often confusion when learning English between referring to present and past tense.
3) I think the error here is referring to both past and present tense in the same sentence. Again, grasping tense is one of the most difficult but important things to learn within the English language.
4) In this sentence the error is the adjective; 'attractive', this description is not appropriate in this sense. It appears the speaker has confused the definition of attractive with the adjective 'nice'.
5) 'There' refers to plural, so in this instance it should be "There were far less people at the match than I expected" The confusion here lies with singular and plural reference.
6) I believe this should be "If I were you, I'd get more sleep". The reason for this is that the speaker should use a subjunctive; 'were' instead of an indicative; was, to represent an act of possibility rather than as fact.
 

emsr2d2

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 28, 2009
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
There's still something wrong with "There were far less people at the match than I expected".
 

Barb_D

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Mar 12, 2007
Member Type
Other
Native Language
American English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
United States
Hint:
The grocery store express lane sign that says "12 items or less" is wrong. The sign that says "12 items or fewer" is right.
 

emsr2d2

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 28, 2009
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
Hint:
The grocery store express lane sign that says "12 items or less" is wrong. The sign that says "12 items or fewer" is right.

It would be nice if someone would tell all the major supermarket chains in the UK that. Pretty much every one of them has an express lane marked "10 items or less". Grrrr.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top