If you were able to learn a foreign language without any effort, which language would you choose to speak and why?
I took 4 years of french for one reason. The french class took a senior year trip to Paris. After 4 years, when it was my turn, they cancelled the program.
I now work DAILY in an area where I'm surrounded by people who speak nothing but Spanish. I've had MAYBE 3 occasions to speak French in the past 20+ years.
Tex/Mex...I live in Texas and I'm missin' alota good conversation at brkfast out! :
I am attempting to learn Spanish and French. I want to speak Spanish, because we have a growing population of Spanish speaking people where I live, and that would only help me in getting a job in customer service. I worked as a cashier for years, and you would be surprised by how many spanish speaking people will use their language to try to dupe you into getting something for a reduced price, because they pretend that they can't speak English. Until you call them out, and then the English flows out of their mouth like it is straight from the dictionary. Other groups also play the language game, but, they just aren't as good at it as others are. Nip it in the bud.
I am also learning french, because I sometimes travel to Montreal, and it would be nice to be able to understand what people are saying to me. For some reason, they get a little irritated with you if you talk to them in English, yet they also speak both languages well, and some speak many languages, that certainly makes us American's look bad.
They wanted us to start taking various languages courses where I worked, as our customers spoke many different languages, as the numbers of Arab speaking people and people from Bosnia and other countries in Europe are starting to grow in our community. And, you wouldn't believe how fast a majority of our English speaking employees said. I have a better idea, open up classes for our customers to learn english!!!
I was all for that!
Learning a foreign language without any effort is a pipe dream unless you are learning the second language when you are very young and become bilingual. I learned Chinese Mandarin when I was a young man, and if I could still learn a foreign language today, it would have to be Mandarin. Why? With the ascension of China to superpower status in the coming years, Mandarin will replace English as the international language.
I don't think Mandarin will replace English as the international language generally, but it will replace it in the Asian sphere and if anyone wants to trade with or within that sphere Mandarin will be essential.
We teach it here if you want to pop over for a the cheapest and best Chinese holiday with a language course thrown in
Living in Spain with a Spanish partner who doesn't speak English has thrown me in the deep end so to speak.
The only other language I'd ever learned before was French at school, almost 40 years ago so I've forgotten more than I ever learned.
The local village here speak Valenciano, which is a mix of French of Spanish, so that isn't so bad to understand - they use parlez for speak instead of hablar and other French words like nit for night instead of noche.
Spanish because I live on a Spanish island and could do so much better here if I was really fluent which I am not!
Speaking of takeaways, a fellow Scot and I were waiting on being served in a Turkish kebab takeaway restaurant in Benidorm when she suddenly marched up to a waiter and slapped him!
Turns out she used to live in Turkey and so spoke Turkish. Two of the waiters had been making derogatory remarks about us, not realising others might have understood.
Luckily their boss saw it our way and we got a free meal to make up
I've wanted to speak German for many years, partly because I visit Germany so often. About ten years ago, I paid what I think was a couple of hundred pounds for a Linguaphone learn at home course. In those ten years, I have got as far as opening the box but no further...
Spanish, looking to move to central america for around a year, would probably come in useful!
Shame - I can talk Spanish, but not write it. All those little accents and other hidden keyboard symbols (well, I am sure they are there somewhere, just can't find them) that I have no clue what to call would have to missed out - meaning whatever I write won't translate, nor be understood. In fact, I don't even know where most of them go anyway. Can't really read Spanish either.
I know a little french, some spanish.. Want to get much better at them. I'm thinking maybe Japanese next?
I know enough french to greet people and ask for the basics. My spanish is limited to dos cerveca porfavor As you may be able to tell, I also cant write or read spanish yet :p
What? I have to choose just one? I took French for two years in high school and enjoyed it very much, but my passion is Arabic. It is a very old and historic language, as is the culture and history of those who live in the Middle East. It fascinated me even as a child. As an adult, I checked out a Pimsleur set of CD's and was able to learn a smattering on my own. So much so, in fact, that my boss is from Lebanon and I can agree, disagree, tell him to hurry up and order coffee -- much to his entertainment!
First, Polish, then Spanish. I live in a part of Chicago that has a very high concentration of folks who speak both languages, and I would LOVE to be able to understand and communicate with many of them who don't necessarily speak English.
Also, I absolutely love the sound of spoken Polish...and have neighbors in the front of my building that I'd like to be able to speak to without the aid of sign language and Google translator...lol
I used to know a little plish, worked in a factory full of them lol!
I like the sound of it, too. I speak the language, having lived in Poland for a couple of years with the Peace Corps. It can be done, but it is grammatically very complex, and not terribly easy to pronounce.
I would love to be able to learn Mandarin, although I wonder if I'll ever be able to. My brain can handle difficult grammars, but it can not seem to distinguish between the tones that are so important to understanding and speaking Mandarin correctly. I have to "see" a word to really understand it, and I can't "see" a tone, if that makes sense.
We teach Mandarin here, and I am learning it slowly. You use stress and intonation when you speak unless you speak in one long flat drawl - tones can be thought of as words that have permanent stress or intonation and this really helps toward learning and it helps with memorising some words that are not used so often.
I find it really hard to learn anything without practically seeing or hearing it in use. Chinese has several different meanings for a word that sounds like - shway - which is water if it has a tone like diving in, down then up with the down quicker than the glide back up, the same sounding word with another sound - shway jow - which is sleeping, has the first word flat as it looks and the second word with a down tone that just sounds like telling a child to 'close your eyes' when you are calming them and getting them to sleep.
Without all these strange associations they are just words to be learned by heart.
I want to learn Japanese for fairly selfish reasons. I'm a gamer and there are just way too many games I want that don't come here and stay in Japan; becoming fluent in Japanese would make importing much more enticing. Sadly, I'm still at a 3rd grade level:/
My second choice would be Spanish because I'm going to be a teacher and I know there are a lot of students here that speak Spanish as their first language.
I can't choose French because I'm already fluent in it .
I'd like to learn Italian. When I was younger, many of my relatives still spoke it, but as they are passing away, the language is passing with them.
I learned Spanish and taught it for two years. It's been four years since then, and without practice I have lost much of it..
Spanish! I have many Spanish-speaking friends and I would love to be able to converse with them in their native language, too!
I would love to learn Spanish. Spanish is a seductive language and it seems like it would sound great speaking it and it is the second spoken language in the US.
I would like to learn Mandarin (Chinese) as foreign language. Because of China has become the factory of the world and is moving up the technology food chain. Look at the balance of trade between the US and China. Per Nobel Prize Winner Robert Mundell China will become the factory of the world, in my opinion it already has. Now products are built, as well as designed in China.
by Elena7 years ago
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by NewYorker6 years ago
This interests me, since we're only allowed to speak English here.I, myself, speak English as a primary language. But I also speak Spanish, Icelandic, Swedish and Danish.Your turn!
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by Star226 years ago
Why are so many people saying "Speak English only"? It makes that person sound so racist! USA is supposed to be a melting pot of different cultures, races, and LANGUAGES! Shame on anyone who says "Speak...
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