“Me, I think that…”

2013-09-27Why are you repeating?  We already know it’s you.

Why wrong: In French, emphasis is expressed through repetition of the subject (e.g. Moi, je pense que, Lui, il pense que, etc.).  In English, we say it by saying certain words louder and longer than others.

Correct it: To emphasize, say the important word louder and longer: “I think that…”Biz Group

You wouldn’t play golf with a baseball bat – it’s a different game.  Remember, that French is a “game” and English is a different game. Learn the rules and the techniques. Don’t just speak French using English words!

Roy has already helped hundreds of francophone professionals. Contact him to improve your “game.”

“My car broke.”

Broken CarReally? Send it to the scrap yard!

Translation: « Mon auto a fracturé. »

Why wrong: In English there are thousands of expressions called pProblem Solvedhrasal verbs that use a particle (i.e. a preposition or adverb) after a verb.  Examples of particles are up, down, in, out, on and off. Omission of the particle can change the meaning, often quite humorously.

Correct it:  My car broke down.

Would you like to learn over 1,000 English idioms? Contact Roy!

Saying “Doctor, my chess hurts.”

2013-09-22Translation: « Docteur, ça me fait mal aux échecs »

Why wrong: In French, most final consonants aren’t pronounced. This can create confusion if you do this in English. For more information, click here. To be taken seriously...Consultation

Correct it: The endings of words (especially d, s and t) must be pronounced or else something else may be understood. Say “Doctor, my chest hurts.”

Do you make this mistake? Contact Roy for a free half-hour consultation.

“Please throw your garbage Monday morning.”

Garbage CanGet out of the way!

Translation: « Veuillez lancer vos poubelles lundi matin. »

Why wrong: In English there are thousands of expressions called phrasal verbs that use a particle (i.e. a preposition or adverb) after a verb. Examples of particles are up, down, in, out, on and off. Omission of the particle can change the meaning, often quite humorously. If you mean to put something in the Excellentgarbage, say throw out.

Correct it:Please throw out your garbage Monday morning.”

Would you like to learn over 1,000 English idioms? Contact Roy

“It’s take an hour.”

Thumbs DownTranslation: « Il est prendre une heure. »

Why wrong:  It’s is a contraction of it is or possibly it has and is third person singular. Consequently, in the Simple Present, it is the verb, and not the subject, that takes the s.Time To Impress

Correct it: After words that are third person singular (e.g. it, this and that), remember to put the s on the verb in the Simple Present. “It takes an hour.”

Would you like to impress your boss with your English? Contact Roy for a personalized class.

Saying “I have fate it will get better.”

2013-09-16Translation: « J’ai destin que ça va s’améliorer. »

Why wrong: Fate means le destin whereas faith means la foiTh is a dCoachingistinct sound in English, not to be confused with t. For more information, click here.

Correct it: Touch your top front teeth with your tongue and exhale softly when you say th. You probably know people who lisp (parlent au bout de la langue). This is what you should do to pronounce th. Say “I have faith it will get better.”

Roy is a pronunciation specialist. Contact him to quickly improve it by working on the “Big Five”.

“I put a thousand dollars in my rear.”

$99You have way too much money!

Translation« J’ai mis mille dollars dans mon derrière. »  Rear is an English word.  REÉR is not.Dollar Sign

Why wrong:  Be extremely careful with acronyms. Remember that they are short for other words.  If those other words are in another language, it’s almost 100% sure that another acronym will be used. REÉR (Régime Enregistré d’Épargne et Retraite) doesn’t stand for the same words in English. If you mean REÉR, say RRSP (Registered Retirement Savings Plan).

Correct it:  Say “I put a thousand dollars in my RRSP.” Please don’t put money in your rear.

Contact Roy to prepare your employees for promotions.

“Ottawa is the capital of the Canada.”

North AmericaReally?  How many Canadas are there?Right Way

Why wrong: The definite article (“the”) is not used for streets, cities, provinces, states, countries, continents, mountains, islands, lakes or bays unless they are plural (the United States, the Alps or the Maritimes).  To be taken seriously…

Correct it: When speaking of singular streets, cities, provinces, states, countries, continents, mountains, islands, lakes or bays, don’t use the definite article (“the”). “Ottawa is the capital of Canada.”

After taking his classes, Roy’s students usually hear the English mistakes their colleagues make. Contact him for more information.

Saying “I’m really tire.”

TireTranslation: « Je suis vraiment pneu »

Why wrong: In French, most final consonants aren’t pronounced. This can create confusion if you do this in English. For more information, click here. To be taken seriously…Young Female Executive

Correct it: For words that end with r sound before the ed, the -ed should be pronounced like -de. Don’t add an extra syllable. Say “I’m really tired.”

Better English can lead to a promotion! Contact Roy for a free half-hour consultation.

 

“I plugged my computer.”

PlumberReally? Call a plumber!

Translation: « J’ai bouché mon ordinateur. »

Why wrong: In English there are thousands of expressions called phrasal verbs that use a particle (i.e. a preposition or adverb) after a verb.  Examples of particles are up, down, in, out, on and off.  QualityometerOmission of the particle can change the meaning, often quite humorously.

Correct it:  “I plugged in my compter.”

Would you like to learn over 1,000 English idioms? Contact Roy!

Saying “It’s really coal outside today.”

CoalReally? Is it that dark?

Translation: « Aujourd’hui, il fait vraiment charbon dehors »

Why wrong: In French, most final consonants aren’t pronounced. This can create confusion if you do this in English. For more information, click here. To be taken seriously…Follow Through

Correct it: Just like a golfer finishes his swing, finish your words.  The endings of most English words (especially d, s and t ) must be pronounced or else something else may be understood: “It’s really cold outside today.”

Contact Roy for a personalized class and learn how to quickly reduce your accent by 80%.

Writing “They’re american.”

Paper HelpWhy wrong: Nationalities, languages, proper names, days of the week, months of the year, holidays and the pronoun I must be capitalized. To avoid this mistake…

Correct it: Write “They’re American.”Do It Now

Would you like to impress your boss? Contact Roy for personalized classes adapted to your personal objectives! 

Saying “I heat ice cream every day.”

2013-09-05What? You want to melt it?

Translation: « Je rechauffe de la crème glacée tous les jours. »

Why wrong: Eat and heat are two different words. Exhaling changes the meaning, sometimes humorously. For more information, click here. To be taken seriously…Consultation

Correct it: If there’s no h, don’t exhale.  Say “I eat ice cream every day.”

Contact Roy for a free half-hour consultation or a personalized class.

“I quit my job at 5:00 every day.”

Need JobWhat?  You have a different job every day?

Translation: « Je démission de mon travail chaque jour à 17h00. »

Why wrong: Quit is a false friend. It doesn’t always mean quitter. For more help with false friends, click here.Problem Solved

What are “false friends?” False friends are words from different languages which look similar but have different meanings. There are over 1,000 false friends between English and French.

Correct it:  What is meant here is leave as in “I leave my job at 5:00 every day.” 

Contact Roy to keep your job and maybe qualify for a promotion.

Saying “I have to go to the batroom.”

2013-09-02What? Are you Batman? He has a batmobile, a batplane and a batcycle.  He must have a batroom too.

Why wrong:  Th is a distinct sound in English, not to be confused with t. For more information, click here.  To be taken seriously…OK Businessman

Correct it:  Touch your top front teeth with your tongue and exhale softly when you say th.  You probably know people who lisp (parlent au bout de la langue). This is what you should do to pronounce th. I have to go to the bathroom.

Roy is a pronunciation specialist. Contact him and let him help you with the “Big Five” of francophone pronunciation problems.

Writing 99$.

$99Dollar SignWhy wrong:  The dollar sign always goes before the number.  It’s the cents sign that goes after the number. Write $99.

Avoid these mistakes:  contact Roy here! Whether it’s conversation, email or presentations, he can help you communicate more professionally.

“The time is the money.”

Time MoneyHands Covering HeadWhy wrong: The definite article (“the”) is used for things that are specific, not general. For more information, click here. To be taken seriously…

Correct it: When speaking generally, don’t use the definite article (“the“) Say “Time is money.”

Would you like to impress your boss with your English? Contact Roy.

Saying “I was boar at the meeting.”

BoarAh, that explains it!

Translation: « J’étais sanglier à la réunion »

Why wrong: In French, most final consonants aren’t pronounced. This can create confusion if you do this in English. For more information, click here. To be taken seriously…Presentation

Correct it: For words that end with r sound before the ed, the -ed should be pronounced like –de. Don’t add an extra syllable. Say “I was bored at the meeting.”

Don’t be bored or boring at meetings! Contact Roy for a free half-hour consultation on how you can speak better English.

 

Saying “She dozen work very hard.”

DozenWhat? « Elle douzaine travailler très fort ? »

Why wrong: In French, most final consonants aren’t pronounced. This can create confusion if you do this in English. For more information, click here. To be taken seriously…Free Star

Correct it: The endings of words (especially d, s and t) must be pronounced or else something else may be understood. Say “She doesn‘t work very hard.”

Do you make this mistake? Contact Roy for a free half-hour consultation.

“This is the funniest movie I’ve never seen.”

stockfresh_1354271_oops-button_sizeXSWhat? You’re watching it now!

Why wrong:  In French, this superlative is le film le plus drôle que j’ai jamais vu. Translating literally sounds ridiculous in English, because obviously, you have seen it or are seeing it now. Finally Hit

To correct it: For Present Perfect superlatives, the adverb ever is used:  “This is the funniest movie I’ve ever seen.”

If you have been disappointed in your English training in the past, contact Roy to finally understand and speak better.

Saying “I just hate a delicious soup.”

What? Why do you stockfresh_1211779_oops_sizeXShate it if it’s delicious?

Translation:  « Je déteste tout simplement une soupe délicieuse. »

Why wrong:  Ate and hate are two different words. Exhaling changes the meaning, Valuesometimes humorously.  For more information, click here. To be taken seriously…

Correct it: If there’s no h, don’t exhale. Say “I just ate a delicious soup.”

Contact Roy for delicious training you won’t hate.

“In school my surname was Pizza Face.”

Pizza FaceReally? Then it’s a pleasure to meet you, Mr. Pizza Face!

Translation: « À l’école, mon nom de famille était face de pizza. »Reputation

Why wrong: Surname is a false friend. It doesn’t mean surnomFor more help with false friends, click here.   To be taken seriously…

Correct it: What is meant here is nickname. Say In school, my nickname was Pizza Face.

Maintain a good name with professional English. Contact Roy.

“That’s look like a problem.”

2013-08-20Translation « Ça c’est regard comme un problème. »

Why wrong: That’s is a contraction of that is or possibly that has. That is third person singular, similar to it. Consequently, in the Simple Present, it is the verb, not the subject, that takes the s. To be taken seriously…

Correct it: That’s should be followed by an adjective, a possessive pronoun (e.g. mine, Investmentyours, or ours), a noun or article. After words that are third person singular (e.g. it, this and that), remember to put the s on the verb in the Simple Present.

Are there people at work whose English embarrasses you? Contact Roy to give a workshop to your organization.

Saying “He true the ball.”

BallTranslation: « Il vrai le ballon. »

Why wrong:  Th is a distinct sound in English, not to be confused with t. For more information, click here.  To be taken seriously…

Correct it:  Touch your top front teeth with your tongue and exhale softly when you say th.  Say “He threw the ball.”Finally A Hit

You probably know people who lisp (parlent au bout de la langue). This is what you should do to pronounce th. 

Roy is a pronunciation specialist. Contact him and let him help you hit your goals.

Calling John Smith “Mr. John.”

IMG_3034Really? So his name is Smith John?

Why wrong:  Using Mister, Mrs., Ms. or Miss is formal.  Use of first names is informal.  They contradict each other.  For more information, click here. For more information only on Ms., click here.Learn Practice Improve

Correct it: To be formal, use the family name after Mr. or Ms. (e.g. Mr. Smith) To be informal, say John.

Contact Roy to have fun and learn at the same time.

“We miss toilet paper.”

Toilet PaperOf course!  We usually miss what we don’t have any more. 

Translation:  « On s’ennuie du papier de toilette »

Why wrong: Manquer de is a French idiom. Lack has relatively the same meaning, but if you want an idiom, it should be run out of or run short ofTo be taken seriously…Finally Hit

Correct it: The aspect is temporarily in progress, so the Present Progressive should be used.  Say We are running out of toilet paper.

Don’t miss your targets!  To avoid the mistakes francophones make in English, contact Roy, either in English or in French.

“Montreal is the biggest city in the Quebec.”

Why wrongThe definite article (“the”) is not used for streets, cities, provinces, states, countries, IMG_3026continents, mountains, islands, lakes or bays unless they are plural (the United States, the Alps or the Maritimes). For more information, click here.Fireworks

Correct it:  When speaking of singular streets, cities, provinces, states, countries, continents, mountains, islands, lakes or bays, don’t use the definite article (“the“). Montreal is the biggest city in Quebec.

After taking his classes, Roy’s students usually hear the English mistakes their colleagues make. Contact him for more information.

Saying “I took the boss to work.”

ChauffeurReally? You’re his chauffeur?

Cause of confusion: There is no short u sound in French.  It is often confused with a short o sound. Short o sounds like the sound you make when a doctor asks you to stick out your tongue. The short u sound is like in the word up. For more information, see O or U.

Correct it:  Listen aggressively to notice the nuances between vowels.  For boss, drop Teamyour chin and hold the sound longer.  For bus, keep the sound short and raise the edges of your mouth (as if you’re smiling). Say I took the bus to work. 

Impress your bossContact Roy to improve your English pronunciation, especially mastering “the Big Five,” which will improve your accent by about 80%.

“I need to get my hairs cut.”

Really? Which ones?  IMG_2907

Translation: « J’ai besoin de me faire couper les poils. »

Why wrongHair  is a non-count noun for masses that are too big to be counted. Hairs, when counted, mean poils. For more information, click here.IMG_3043

Correct it:  If you mean chevelure, a mass, use hair, but if you mean individual strands you can count either that stand up on the head or that are elsewhere on the body, say hairs.

Contact Roy.  He is a Cambridge English Teacher Advisor.

Saying “He’s growing a beer.”

BeerdReally? Is he growing a bottle too?

Translation: « Il se fait pousser une bière »


Why wrongIn French, most final consonants aren’t pronounced. This can create confusion if you do this in English. For more information, click here. To be taken Presentationseriously…

Correct itThe endings of most English words (especially d, s and t ) must be pronounced or else something else may be understood. Say He’s growing a beard.

Contact Roy for lots of tricks in public speaking.

Saying “I work ear.”

EarTranslation:  « Je travaille oreille. »

Why wrong:  is a consonant in English and must be pronounced.  For more information, see H.

Correct it:  Exhale to say h, like if you’re running.  If there’s no h, don’t exhale. Say “I work here.”Goals and Targets

Contact Roy to quickly meet your goals and gain confidence speaking English.

“She’s happy she’s notorious.”

2013-08-07Why? What does she do?

Translation: « Elle est heureuse d’être mal famée. »

Why wrong: Notorious is sometimes a false friend. It is pejorative and doesn’t always mean notoire.IMG_3043

What are “false friends?” False friends are words from different languages which look similar but have different meanings. There are over 1,000 false friends between English and French.

Correct it: False friends must be learned to avoid the mistakes. What is meant here is famous or well-known as in She’s happy she’s well-known. For more help with false friends, click here.

Contact Roy for more confidence speaking English.

“It’s depend.”

2013-08-06Translation« C’est dépend. »

Why wrong: It’s is a contraction of it is or possibly it has. It is third person singular, similar to he or she. Consequently, in the Simple Present, it is the verb, and not the subject, that takes the s.

Biz GroupCorrect it: If be is not the verb, don’t say It’s.  Say it and put the s on the verb (It depends).

Let Roy make you look good in front of your English-speaking colleagues.  Contact him here.

Saying “Mary Higgins Clark is my favorite otter.”

OtterReally? Does she work at Sea World?

Translation: « Mary Higgins Clark est ma loutre préférée. »


Why wrong: Th is a distinct sound in English, not to be confused with d or t. For more information, click hereTo be taken seriously…OK Businessman

Correct it: Touch your top front teeth with your tongue and exhale softly when you say th.  You probably know people who lisp (parlent au bout de la langue). This is what you should do to pronounce th.  Say Mary Higgins Clark is my favorite author.

Contact Roy.  He has over 13 years experience teaching ESL to French-speaking businesspeople.

“Our accountant makes our taxes.”

Translation:  « Notre comptablIMG_2902e construit nos rapports d’impôt »

Why wrong: There are two words for faire in English: do and make. We do services and make products.  For more information, click here.Products Services

Correct it: Filing tax reports is a service, not a product, so here the verb should be do.  “Our accountant does our taxes.”

Do you know the difference between say and tellContact Roy!

Saying “Finally, I am Finnish!”

FinnishReally? Are you related to Saku Koivu?

Translation: « Enfin, je suis finlandais ! »

Why wrong:  The -ed  endings of past tense regular English verbs must be clearly pronounced or something else will be understood. Someone from Finland is Finnish. For more information, click here. If you don’t want people to laugh…Fireworks

Correct it:   For words that end with sh before the ed, the ending should be pronounced like a t. Say “I am finished!”

Contact Roy for a personalized class and learn about “The Big Five” pronunciation mistakes francophones make.

Saying “My pants are too tie!”

Really? Is it paIMG_2906inful tying the knot?

Translation:  « Mon pantalon est trop cravate ! »


Why wrongIn French, most final consonants aren’t pronounced. This can create confusion if you do this in English. For more information, click here.  If you don’t want people to laugh…Thumbs Up

Correct itThe endings of most English words (especially d, s and t) must be pronounced or else something else may be understood. Say “My pants are too tight!”

To improve your pronunciation, contact Roy.  He has helped hundreds of French-educated professionals to have confidence when they speak English.

Writing “I write english very well.”

Um, actually you dostockfresh_568706_wrong_sizeXSn’t!Upper Lower Case

Why wrong:  Nationalities, languages, proper names, days of the week, months of the year, holidays and the pronoun I must be capitalized.  Do the same with a person’s title when used before the name but not afteit.  That should be “I write English very well.”

Roy has lots of tricks to improve your writing. Contact him.

“What’s the right traduction?”

2013-07-27Why wrongThe word traduction doesn’t exist. The word is translation, from the verb to translate.  It’s a common mistake since English and French share many words, but not all of them. If you want to be taken seriously...IMG_3043

Correct it:  “What’s the right translation?”

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“Did he saw her yesterday?”

IMG_2898Really? If he did, I hope she survived!

Translation: « Est-ce qu’il l’a découpé hier ? »

Why wrong: It’s the first verb (auxiliary) that shows time. Did  already indicates past, so the main verb see should be in its simple form (no –s, -ed or –ing endings). To be taken seriously…

Correct it: In Simple tenses (with did, do/does or will), time is already clear, so use the simple form afterwards.

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Thumbs Up

Saying “Love Is In The Hair”

Translation:  « L’amour est dans les cheveux. »

Why wrong:  is a consonant in English.  While it is possible to love someone’s hair, the popular song didn’t talk about that.  For more information, see H.  Don’t feel too bad but to be taken seriously…H

Correct it:  Exhale to say h, like if you’re running.  If there’s no h, don’t exhale. Sing Love Is In The Air.

Contact Roy to improve your pronunciation.

“I didn’t mean to derange you.”

IMG_3029It’s OK because I’m already deranged!

Translation « Je ne voulais pas vous rendre fou. »

Why wrong:  Derange is a false friend. It doesn’t mean déranger.

What are false friends False friends are words from different languages which look similar but have different meanings. There are over 1,000 false friends between English and French.  To be taken Biz Group (Small)seriously…

Correct it:  False friends must be learned to avoid the mistakes. What is meant here is bother or disturb as in I didn’t mean to bother you. For more help with false friends, click here.

Contact Roy for him to present a workshop to your organization.

“Work, that’s mean what you do all day.”

2013-07-23I know, but it pays well.

Why wrong: That’s is a contraction of that is or possibly that has. That is third person singular, similar to it. Consequently, in the Simple Present, it is the verb, and not the subject, that takes the s. To be taken seriously…

Correct it:  That’s should be followed by an adjective (e.g. good, interesting, or sad), a possessive pronoun (e.g. mine, yours, or ours) or a noun or article (e.g. That’s life!, That’s the spirit! or That’s a deal breaker!). Unfortunately, mean is also an adjective, not only a verb. After words that are third person singular (e.g. it, this and that), remember to put the s on the verb in the Simple Present.  “That means what you do all day.”Young Female Executive

Would you like to impress your boss with your English? Contact Roy for a personalized class.

Saying “I am the turd child in the family.”

Saying "I am the turd" (instead of "third")

Really? Well, that explains a lot of things!

Translation: « Je suis l’enfant crotte dans la famille. »

Listen to the mistake:  [sc_embed_player fileurl=”http://www.anglaide.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/Turd-Child.ogg”]

Listen to the correction:  [sc_embed_player fileurl=”http://www.anglaide.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/Third-Child.ogg”]

Why wrong: Th is a distinct sound in English, not to be confused with d or t. The word turd is sometimes vulgar, but surely not what you mean to communicate.  For more information, click here.

To be taken seriously, you should…

Correct it:  Touch your top front teeth with your tongue and exhale softly when you say th. Say I am the third child.

You probably know people who lisp (parlent au bout de la langue). This is what you should do to pronounce th (but not for s or z ).  It may sound and feel bizarre at first, but it really is the way it should be spoken.

Do you make this mistake?  Why not contact Roy for a free half-hour consultation or a personalized class and some coaching?

“What is the right pronounciation?”

Not Again1Why wrong:  The word pronounciation doesn’t exist. The word is pronunciation. It’s true that the verb is to pronounce, but the noun is different. To be taken seriously…

Correct it: Ask, What is the right pronunciation?You Can Do It

Contact Roy to improve your pronunciation, especially the “Big Five” which will improve a French accent by about 80%.