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Most common mistakes Spanish speakers make when communicating in English – Part 4
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“Hey what’s up Jorge?” → “good” One of the most common ways to initiate (informal) conversations in North American English: what’s up? Most people will respond not much, but there are many other ways to respond such as just working, just hanging out. However, if you respond by simply saying “good”, it sounds very awkward. The one word response good is only appropriate if the question is phrased with how – such as How are you? How is work? How are things?
Writing: run-on sentences. One of the biggest differences between writing in Spanish and English is sentence structure. In Spanish, it’s normal for sentences to be long- some almost a short paragraph! But when writing in English, you should try to keep most of your sentences short and sweet. It helps to keep things organized and clear for the reader. Example of a run-on sentence: John studies English every weekend because it is very important for his job, but he doesn’t like studying on Saturdays, however he needs to use English because many of his clients are from North America Same idea- but with two smaller sentences. John studies English every weekend because it is very important for his job. Although he doesn’t like studying on Saturdays, he needs to use English because many of his clients are from North America.
“We stayed at a nice HO-tel” For every word in Spanish, there are very specific rules to identify which syllable receives the stress. Unfortunately, things are not so clear cut in English. There are some general rules and patterns, but each one has numerous exceptions. To find more information about stress patterns in English, you can find many resources with just a simple Google search. So next time you have an event or conference outside of town, make sure you say “good afternoon” to the hotel receptionist with the correct pronunciation