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Common pitfalls for Poles learning English


Lyzko 45 | 9,275
27 Aug 2015 #181
When many Poles speak English, I've noticed almost a "squelched"-sounding pronunciation of certain vowel combinations, e.g. the "-or" in words such as "performance" etc... creating something akin to "perFERmance", thus lending a somewhat jerking, chirping quality to the speech!
xerxes88
27 Aug 2015 #182
I speak Polish but Poles when hearing my bad but intermediate Polish start speaking English. They have a fluency but it sounds very formal and awkward to me. There aren't many grammar mistakes but they don't use phrasal verbs and everything sounds a bit forced. They use functional boring language and think they speak English. I try to use colluqial Polish words etc. but make grammar mistakes. They judge my Polish as bad but I'm getting tired off hearing English being reduced to its basic parts.
Lyzko 45 | 9,275
28 Aug 2015 #183
@xerxes88,

You've just touched on my Achilles Heel regarding this aggravating tendency, not only of Poles but other Europeans as well,
to try switching to a language not generally familiar or even comfortable for them (in this case, English), laboring under the erroneous notion that they are actually doing us a favor!!

My advice is simply to continue speaking Polish, good, bad, or indifferent, and to blazes with their often paltry attempts to "make things easier for you", usually having the reverse effect of making things harder, since, in my experience, I scarcely could understand their English:-)

Persevere ol' chum and remember the famous saying, "Illegitimis non carborundum est!", i.e. "Don't let the buggers get you down!"
rozumiemnic 8 | 3,861
28 Aug 2015 #184
"Illegitimis non carborundum est!", i.e. "Don't let the buggers get you down!"

actually it means 'don't let the b.a.s.t.a.r.d.s grind you down'. Just saying.
Lyzko 45 | 9,275
28 Aug 2015 #185
Appreciate the correction, rozumiemnic! I was only trying to be politeLOL
Atch 23 | 4,045
28 Aug 2015 #186
Polish start speaking English. They have a fluency but it sounds very formal and awkward to me.

I think that may be because they learned their English in class, rather than in the real world. My husband spoke no English at all beyond hello, goodbye, please and thank you when he came to Ireland thus his English which he learned initially through conversation and listening to radio and television is very idiomatic and rich in both Hiberno-English and British English influences. He now finds it easier to express himself in English than in Polish!
Lyzko 45 | 9,275
28 Aug 2015 #187
Maybe HE finds it easier to speak English than Polish. However, do native English speakers necessarily agree?
:-)

Guess they do.

Furthermore, Poles often seem to have difficulties telling the continuous from the simple tense(s), not to mention the distinction in English between statement vs. question word order, for example,"Mark, why you are speaking Polish?" cf. "Mark, why DO you SPEAK Polish?" etc...


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