Friday, June 22, 2007

End of the Semester shenanigans... All the kids are panicing and excited in equal measure at the end of the semester. More exams so more amusing uses of English to correct. Really, it is hardly fair to write this stuff here but this student got a very good mark in all other respects: "Huteri's is a club with very loud music. You can dance until your legs can't handle you anymore!".

I know exactly what she means, but the implication is that if you dance too much your legs might get so exhausted they will detach themselves from your waist and literally walk out... if only she had put "it" instead of "you".

For people learning English, prepositions (by, in, on, at, about, with, for, of etc.) are a nightmare - so small, totally irregular and liable to alter meaning considerably. in fact, it's still the one area my wife and her sister get wrong despite having total fluency in English in all other respects. One of the teacher´s here told me that when he writes English he does everything in his power (rewriting and rewriting sentences) to make sure he avoids using prepositions because he fears he will make a mistake. As an example, one student volunteered this mistake she had made in a test last year: "I lived in a house made by trees".

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