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Poll: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?
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Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

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  #1 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 1st, 2007, 03:49 am
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Default Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

This is my 4th year I am putting in abroad and my 9th teaching English. The way I say things has changed seriously. You'd notice it if you take a trip home.
Anyone out there with the same feelings?
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  #2 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 1st, 2007, 04:56 am
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

Oh yes.
Not only do I use the wrong words but put them in the strangest order too!
I've become more aware of it now that I have a baby daughter. I really think before saying some things because I don't want her to pick up Italianised English. Sometimes I don't even realise what I've said and my Italian wife actually corrects me - how bad is that?!!

Not only that I tend to talk more slowly and clearly than I did before.

I guess that's 8 years in a foreign country that does that to you. Or more correctly, 8 years teaching English. Hearing incorrect English day in day out for so long must take its toll eventually.

Nice question!
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  #3 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 1st, 2007, 06:22 am
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

Yes definitely. First of all I speak more slowly than most people, and have cut out idioms and phrasal verbs etc almost entirely. And, like Clive, I often come out with "translated" Italian. It's also affected my listening comprehension - when I watch DVDs I sometimes have to put the English subtitles on to catch everything they're saying, especially if it's an American film.
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  #4 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 1st, 2007, 08:42 am
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

I find myself having to really concentrate with advanced students especially in their writings. I often tend to over simplify things even though the students are capable of higher level grammar, idioms and vocabulary.

I've been on guard these past few years not to compromise the language for comprehension. However, you just can't help it at times.
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Unread Jun 1st, 2007, 10:17 am
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Thumbs down Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

It has affected me most on the way I use interrogative forms. Oh! and the hand gestures...I just can't get rid of them. In the evenings when I get down town to have a drink with friends who are not teachers I get embarrassed as their eyes follow my hand movements.
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Unread Jun 4th, 2007, 02:01 am
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

Quote:
Quote susan53
It's also affected my listening comprehension - when I watch DVDs I sometimes have to put the English subtitles on to catch everything they're saying, especially if it's an American film.
I'm so happy to read that. I thought it was just me. Especially if the dialogue is too fast , they are mumbling or you can't see the mouth. I guess pretty much the same problems our students have!
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Unread Jun 4th, 2007, 08:49 am
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

For me I was always conscious of it happened to my uncle. He has lived in Germany for over 15 years and he has lost a lot of English. He teaches on a part time basis some evenings and works in a company full time so that is why he is losing it.

I saw that happening to him and vowed that it would never happen to me. My wife felt the exact same as she knew this one teacher who taught kindergarden for seven years and he's English was really bad. So we download and watch a lot of TV shows. I watch the Irish new regularly on www.rte.ie We only speak in English (that's all we know) so that helps too. It's another reason why I want only to teach adults or university students. The only thing that I will lose will be the local slang but that changes all the time.
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  #8 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 13th, 2007, 10:16 am
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

I'm listening to a load of podcasts (thanks to a post from LIK in another thread!) and it not only helps with my English but also with modern 'culture' -who's who and what's basically going on back 'home'. It was a sad day when my father had to expalin to me last year what bling was! No kidding.

By the way, the podcasts i listen to are:
BBC - Chris Evans, Russell Brand, Mark Kermode, Scott Mills, Chris Moyles, The Now Show, Sportsweek, Fighting Talk
Others - Martin Kelner, Wait wait . . , Ricky Gervais, The Twisted Pickle Show, Clever Little Pod.

If anyone knows of any others, tell us!
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  #9 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 13th, 2007, 07:47 pm
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

It feels better to know many out there are suffering from the same problem too.
The Chinese say "When everyone is suffering no one is suffering."
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  #10 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 13th, 2007, 09:54 pm
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

Quote:
Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?
Yes, I find that I take more care when speaking. Improved my English no end.
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Unread Jun 14th, 2007, 11:20 am
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Smile Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

Hello,

I have found that my English has actually improved since I started teaching English in China. I find myself correcting more and more poor grammer and re-learning the use of some verbs. I also am a firm believer that "GOT" is inappropriate English in any form. Take the time to learn the proper verb.

Thanks

Brian
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  #12 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 20th, 2007, 08:38 am
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

Behold! Who could have thought it works the other way round also!?
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Unread Jun 21st, 2007, 06:37 am
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

I've noticed my English has become a lot more "internationalized," for lack of a better word. Vocab and phrases from Australians, English, Scots, Canadians, plus the usual Japanese-English I hear so often, has gotten incorporated into my everyday speaking. My accent has also become a lot more neutral, and can't even speak with my Chicagoan accent anymore.
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  #14 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 21st, 2007, 10:42 am
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

Do you feel more comfortable with your new neutral accent (which many more persons can understand) or you would prefer your original accent?
Just curious
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Unread Jun 22nd, 2007, 01:01 am
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

Good question! I hadn't really thought about it.

I suppose, while in Japan, it's a benefit. I understand, and use, much of the slang and word choices that my expat peers use. In the classroom, many students have said that my accent is very easy to understand, which greatly helps lower-level learners.

When I visit family and friends back in Chicago, though, they all comment that I talk a bit funny for the first few days. They also comment on how slow I speak.

So I guess there are pluses and minuses.
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Unread Jun 22nd, 2007, 03:03 am
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

I am sure you couldn't guess why I aksed that question Hue, but it's fun to know how divided you are in your way of speaking. It's happening with every one of us.
I was in a debate recently and the issue came up when a speaker drew our attention to the fact that ESL speakers are fast outnumbering native English speakers. God alone knows howmany English accents the world will have in the next decades and who can guess the accents that will be dominant?
Gone are the days when the English language was used as an identification tool for Americans, The British etc.
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Unread Jun 24th, 2007, 08:24 pm
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

Quote:
Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?
No, I don't think it have.
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Unread Jun 24th, 2007, 08:25 pm
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

Quote:
ESL speakers are fast outnumbering native English speakers.
If you look at the stats, it has already happened. The most widely spoken form of English is broken English!
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Unread Jul 5th, 2007, 07:14 am
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

I often think that my English would be worse if I were in England. Whenever I go back and hear young people saying 'You isn't invited' 'Is your brothers here?' ' He don't respect me' 'Does you like it?'etc I'm not sure if it's done on purpose a la Ali G or whether they really do have a problem. At that point 'ain't' for every negative starts to sound good!
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Unread Jul 5th, 2007, 09:06 pm
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Default Re: Has teaching English abroad affected the quality of the English you speak?

All the time I think of how the world of English will be decades later when all the millions of ESL learners we teach today will be ESL speakers and don't forget, some ESL teachers.
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