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-   -   How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently (https://www.englishforum.ch/international-affairs-politics/255456-how-many-languages-do-you-speak-fluently.html)

Guest 10.06.2016 15:33

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by JagWaugh (Post 2603131)
I would be interested to know how prevalent English is in the local Spanish population compared to Switzerland.

Just depends where in Spain. One daughter lived in Southern Tenerife for a few years, and the % of English speakers was very significant - and most of them didn't speak any Spanish beyond asking for a beer or fish and chips- and lived very much among themselves ghetto style. In the North of the Island, there were very few- and thos who were British all spoke Spanish quite well and lived as part of their community- often married to locals.

Blueangel 10.06.2016 22:59

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by slammer
You will share the results here won´t you?

Quote:

Originally Posted by JagWaugh (Post 2603131)
I would be interested to know how prevalent English is in the local Spanish population compared to Switzerland.

I've just asked the owners of the forum. They're posting the results in a week or so and will let me know, so I'll post a link in this thread then.

EastEnders 11.06.2016 14:16

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Blueangel (Post 2602966)
Question from a curious mind...

If someone speaks to you in one of the languages you understand, but you don't know the person or their nationality, how long does it take you to recognise the language by lip reading alone?


Depends obviously on different things.....anything from no problem at all to a minute perhaps.

One thing is observation, it may sound a tad crazy, but have you seen the series "Sherlock" with Mister Cumberbatch, I am a bit like that in life, not just when entering a room or meeting someone new. Gives me often a lot of clues to be prepared what language might be spoken. (for example on holidays)

But very often when I meet someone new, I just try to understand at first,without saying anything.

I still wear very strong hearing aids and get rudimentary sounds through them, and those sounds help as well to identify a language together with lip reading, it is a process that takes seconds only.
If I fail, I am the one admitting to my "hearing" problem.

During childhood and up to my early 30's i was only very hard of hearing, so I am speaking normal, normal voice and pronunciation and without accent, and if you don't know me, you would never think I am now totally deaf (correct German term is; spätertaubt).

Which is the other problem, when i then say I am totally deaf, please look at me speak normally bla bla bla, because my voice sounds so normal, most people don't believe me........

I actually try to avoid situations like the one you mention and I don't go out to places where I could be spoken to at random.
I only meet up with either people I know anyway or if it were someone from EF for example, there will have been an exchange of PM's prior to the meeting to inform the person about my problem and make communication easier I never meet with more than 2-3 new people at once.

Does this answer your question ok? if not, don't hesitate to ask :)

JagWaugh 11.06.2016 14:24

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
[QUOTE]Does this answer your question ok? if not, don't hesitate to ask[QUOTE]


Fascinating. Do you "see" accents? Are they regional, or do you see something more related to facial construction, or both?

sniveri 11.06.2016 14:41

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
I don't speak any languages fluently :)

EastEnders 11.06.2016 14:45

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Quote:

Fascinating. Do you "see" accents? Are they regional, or do you see something more related to facial construction, or both?
What i always have to do at first immediately, is learning about how the person speaks overall, their mimics, pronunciation and lip movements.

I just love people who talk to me through an artificial smile with clenched teeth ;););), like shop assistants or bank tellers.

In a way, yes, I can sort of see the accent, but only in Swissgerman.

Having said that, it is more difficult for me to read lips from a person originating in East Switzerland (TG, SG,AI) than someone from Aargau or Solothurn, the latter are closer to my Bernese Dialect.

Overall, as funny peculiar as it may sound, communication is key to communicate with people like me.

Trollemor 11.06.2016 21:49

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Single citizenship, somehow sadly.

French, mother tongue; I cab speak both Québécois and French French (Paris style) so people don't know I'm not from Paris unless I want them to.

English, which lately has acquired a South African tinge (I'm being influenced by my best friend).

Norwegian, only people from Bergen know I'm not from there.

My writing skills are at the same level in all three languages, it helps to have done a university degree in each language.

My German is nowhere near those 3, but I get by in a mix of Swiss and High German tending more and more towards Swiss German due to my tendency to unconsciously mirror other peoples' way of speaking. Will get there eventually, just need more practice.

Blueangel 21.06.2016 13:37

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Blueangel (Post 2603617)
I've just asked the owners of the forum. They're posting the results in a week or so and will let me know, so I'll post a link in this thread then.

As promised, the results of the language poll on my mates' Spanish ex-pat site...

http://www.spainbuddy.com/the-spain-...urvey-results/

The biuggest percentage, with 26%, is the option - 'I can hold a very basic conversation in most circumstances'.

They took a different angle to the poll here, choosing to concentrate on how well ex-pats and visitors speak Spanish.

Looking at our results, I feel that ex-pats in Switzerland possibly concentrate more on learning the local language, but as I've long suspected, it appears that non-Brits are far more inclined to be polylingual.

NomadAmericano 21.06.2016 20:54

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by JagWaugh (Post 2603131)
I would be interested to know how prevalent English is in the local Spanish population compared to Switzerland.

An observation from my discussions (in Spanish) with Swiss-based Spaniards and other native Spanish speakers: Almost none speak English.

Sky 06.11.2019 21:02

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Loved reading this thread, especially EastEnders
Much beloved JagWaugh’s posts are so nice to read too.

I speak 4 languages.
Swiss Italo-American, I am fluent in French, English, Italian and enjoy conversational Spanish.
I love languages and very much enjoy translating literary texts from French and Italian into English.

greenmount 07.11.2019 00:18

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
This thread made me think of the Catherine Tate's sketch "The offensive translator"...thank you @Tom1234, now I just can't help it...

venetian 07.11.2019 10:38

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Blueangel (Post 2602360)
I also strongly feel that one of the best gifts you can give your children is to teach them a second language from a very early age if you are able to.

In Italy in the '80s teaching a second language in school was almost the norm, starting from the age of 6. The most popular languages were French and German, I believe due to borders (Yugoslavia was a special case then). In some places English was "experimental"; Spanish was also present here and there.
Nowadays English is the standard, and German or French are taught at a later stage (>11y) and not to all students (e.g. some can do extra CS or music instead of a second language).
I studied French from age 6 to 14, English since I was 11... and German for the last three years :D My French is fading, I plan to revive it when I start to be kind of fluent in German.

Blueangel 07.11.2019 12:00

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by venetian (Post 3117992)
In Italy in the '80s teaching a second language in school was almost the norm, starting from the age of 6.

For comparison, I began learning French in yr 4 at infant school, so age 7-8. By yr 8 / age 11, I was learning French and German as was standard at our school, but dropped languages aged 13 in favour of Biology and Chemistry.

Axa 07.11.2019 12:06

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Blueangel (Post 2602360)
I'm very aware that the members of this forum aren't a typical group to poll from, but I'm curious to know...


How many languages do you speak fluently enough to work exclusively in that language?


I can speak bits of this and that, but no other language than English fluently. I strongly feel that British schools don't put enough emphasis on language learning and that could be detrimental to our economy if Brexit does happen. I also strongly feel that one of the best gifts you can give your children is to teach them a second language from a very early age if you are able to.


My language fluency test is to be able to interact successfully with a client on the phone, I'm a consultant. So, I'm French and English, and in my mother language Spanish.



I think the best gift we can give to children and future adults is to free them from prejudice and self-imposed limits. I learned French at 32 YO and learning Swiss German at 37 YO. Of course I have an accent, but as long as invoices get payed...everything's all rigth :D

amogles 07.11.2019 12:11

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by NomadAmericano (Post 2610413)
An observation from my discussions (in Spanish) with Swiss-based Spaniards and other native Spanish speakers: Almost none speak English.

In my observation, in Spain it's pretty generational.

People aged about 50 or over rarely speak more than a few words of English (unless they work in tourism). If they do speak a foreign language it's more likely to be French, or possibly German.

People aged 30 to 50 typically have some working basic English but are grateful if you switch to Spanish.

People aged 30 and under typically have very good English and are very keen to use it.

the_flag_is_a_big_plus 07.11.2019 12:38

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
I recently passed B2 German. Is that fluent? I did go through some job interviews exclusivley in German recently and got hired - so I would say probably it's good enough :o

greenmount 07.11.2019 12:54

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Axa (Post 3118018)
I think the best gift we can give to children and future adults is to free them from prejudice and self-imposed limits. I learned French at 32 YO and learning Swiss German at 37 YO. Of course I have an accent, but as long as invoices get payed...everything's all rigth :D

Exactly. My mother learned English quite late in life because a) she needed it and b) wanted to because she could see it's gonna be very important to have some (working) knowledge of English. She learned other languages during school years.
Never too late for anything. ;)

slammer 07.11.2019 13:03

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
English and German are pretty much interchangeable for me. At one time I could hold a conversation in Mexican Spanish, something that turned heads when in Spain. I could hold a simple conversation in Danish and can still just about read a newspaper also and much to my surprise I still retain a lot of school French. (Bet you did´t expect that Mrs. Ormrod) Maltese, only a few words, just enough to get me from A to B and not starve in a Restaurant.
It´s all a case of "Use it or lose it!"

Sky 07.11.2019 19:28

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by the_flag_is_a_big_plus (Post 3118028)
I recently passed B2 German. Is that fluent? I did go through some job interviews exclusivley in German recently and got hired - so I would say probably it's good enough :o

A B2 is the required level should you wish to study literature in a specific language at uni.
So definitely a big + 🙂

cannut 07.11.2019 19:39

Re: How Many Languages Do You Speak Fluently
 
Zueri duetsch :p


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