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Messages - Mwita Chacha

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Member Introductions / Hello
« on: August 16, 2018, 03:05:10 PM »
Hello to Forum members! But most specially to Mr Carillo. I might be not as actively involved in the Forum as I was sometime back, but truth is I still highly appreciate the contribution this place has made upon changing my grammar. I remain grateful forever.

Mwita Chacha

Member Introductions / Hello
« on: August 12, 2015, 01:02:16 AM »
I am not a stranger here but I feel like saying hello to fellow Forum members and of course to Jose Carillo especially after having not posted in the Forum for quite a long time now.

You Asked Me This Question / Love and like: Do they carry equal weight?
« on: October 07, 2014, 04:47:06 PM »
Does 'I love you' mean the same thing as 'I like you'?

You Asked Me This Question / (Which, what) is the poorest bank in the world?
« on: September 29, 2014, 06:39:56 PM »
(Which, what) is the poorest bank in the world?

I agreed with your opinion
'Wedded' in 'wedded wife' is not acting as a past-tense verb as Jose Carillo has stated. It's rather acting as an adjective in the form of a participle--a past participle to be specific.

You Asked Me This Question / I've lost my English confidence
« on: August 23, 2014, 01:11:11 PM »
I don't think I can now write as confidently as I used to when I was a regular visitor to the Forum. Poor me.

How Good is Your English? / Re: Bad English
« on: December 11, 2013, 07:57:08 AM »
Hi all,

I have a very bad english,
I even wrote it with google translate.
This situation could change if the hope to better

Your English is really very, very bad. I greatly appreciate your openness.

Forgive me, bance, if potentially I might intimidate you with what I'm going to say about one of your sentences. Your sentence ''We were then also discussing on how to keep things simple in computer language'' is brilliantly flawed. You shouldn't have put the preposition ''on'' between ''discussing'' and ''how.'' Verb ''discuss'' acts directly on its objects without the need for a preposition next to it to act as an intermediary.
But you're not the first person in the world to commit the boo-boo of that nature. I the other day heard Mr. Eric Holder making this statement on CNN: ''We have been discussing about the possibility of appealing against the verdict that has freed George Zimmerman.'' Eric Holder, in case you don't know, is the U.S. attorney general.

I appreciate the methods you've provided, bibliosense, to be taken into consideration by someone ambitious to become fluent in spoken English but fails to practice speaking it because he or she is living in a country where there are no enough people capable of speaking the language and therefore not enough people to speak with. Although in my Third World country the Internet connection obviously isn't as widespread and readily available as in the Phillipines, I still think many of academic institutions have the access to the service (as the governement wants them to have it as a condition to get permission to start business), and students and staffers alike in such places may want to make it a point to carry out your suggestions if they are serious about getting a good grasp of the Queen's language for them to be able to compete in this incredibly English-demanding world and to be able to communicate confidently with people whose only language is English.
But one thing before I go: Your writing style looks so strikingly similar to that of Jose Carillo that I almost thought he had signed in under a different username. I wonder if this is an outcome of a deliberate effort or merely it is a coincidence. I am curious about that because I myself have a massive soft spot for his style and have been over several months trying to go through the archives of his past postings to see if I might be able to discover the secret behind his compelling writings. This task unfortunately hasn't been as easy as I had thought; nevertheless, I haven't lost hope that I someday will be able to achieve that. Now if indeed you managed to attain that through some kind of an effort, please tell me why it has been a breeze for you to bring off what seems to me as somewhat a highly elusive goal.

For some reason, I have become keen on Ma. Victoria-Cardenas Faicol's writing style. I wonder if she has written other pieces.

You Asked Me This Question / XX is different (than, from) YY?
« on: August 27, 2013, 07:25:08 AM »
This sentence I saw in an online US newspaper's commentary puzzled me: ''I chose this dress because it's different than the traditional wedding gown you see at every wedding.'' It presumably might perplex anyone whose knowledge about the word ''than'' is that it is a conjunction used after a comparative adjective or adverb to introduce the second element or clause of an unequal comparison as in ''Maria is taller than her sister,'' ''He paints more beautifully than his friend,'' and ''Their neighborhood is more dangerous to walk at nights than ours.''

The commonly given advice to folks fighting their poor spoken English is speak, speak, speak. Such a suggestion makes a great deal of sense if the learner lives in an English-speaking country. It becomes unrealistic, however, for someone in a country like Tanzania, where English speaking is restricted to a very small number of people. Extremely tough is to encounter a person on the streets of Dar es Salaam, our capital, talking English to another person--let alone perfect English.

I am fortunate to have been sent to an elementary school in neighboring Kenya. Kenya is a former colony of Britain like our country. But unlike our country's first president, its didn't abolish the use of English as a teaching language in primary schools. It's during the course of my time there that I became somewhat capable of speaking the language confidently. That happened between 1996 and 2002, but the benefits are unfolding today at the university and they certainly will further reveal themselves in the future.

I managed to be enrolled there because my parents were happy to pay for my school fee. Both of them can be described as belonging to what one can call a class of educated citizens, so they may not need to be lectured about the importance of English speaking skills in the integrated globe. An itinerary biology lecturer, my father spends much of his time traveling around the world delivering his lessons in different universities. He also has taken part in several academic conferences, being involved as a speaker or a moderator. A spokesperson at a government institution, my mother issues press releases and holds meetings with reporters to explain issues related to her office almost every single day. She is now preparing to open an evening class that will be dedicated to helping the wannable information officers to become familiar with the kind of job they're about to do. In short, they thought nothing of expending a total of USD 4,000 (it was quite a huge sum then) on the school fee for my seven years at the Kenyan school.

My parents are sort of privileged. Not all parents are having the similar level of education or exposure as them, with the number being more than 20 million of adult people without a college degree in a country of just over 40 million people. To such people, knowing English language is not more important than having a good command of any other local language.

But for those who realize that the usefulness of a good grasp of English language can't be underestimated, the challenge is always there. Foreign English-medium schools charge so high amounts of fees that many parents literary can't afford and dismiss all hopes that their children can be enrolled. For instance, the school I attended now wants parents to pay USD 2,000 per one year of studies, and it isn't even close to the country's first-rate schools. So the amount might be twice as much in comparatively better schools. In a country where the minimum wage is less than USD 130, telling parents to make such exorbitant payments comes close to saying to them that their children are not needed in those schools.

But these children certainly have to become fluent in spoken English in order to survive the forces of modern world. Everywhere English is growing an increasingly demanded language. US and European colleges don't register students who are not conversant in spoken English. Foreign multinational companies operating in our country make it as a criterion that their potential employees must be familiar with spoken English. Ironically, even local employers also demand that job seekers be at home with spoken English. Surely, a precise understanding of the King's language is a must in today's highly competitive society. And to achieve that, one has to speak, speak, speak. But how if he or she is surrounded by people who can't speak?

Thank you for the compliment. I really appreciate it.

As part of my campaign to get the hang of good English, I listen to the BBC World Service as well as reading the BBC official news website on daily basis. The tangible outcome is appreciated. But that doesn't prevent me from quoting a BBC sentence and asking for clarification on its grammar if I happen to be doubtful about it. This is the reason I now and then do that on the Forum.
There is a trial in progress in China against Mr. Bo Xilai, a disgraced political leader charged with embezzlement, corruption, and abuse of power. I don't have much interest in the hearing, but certainly I would like to know the grounds for the use of preposition ''in'' in this sentence by a BBC China correspondent in his radio report of the case: ''Bo Xilai has never been seen in public in 18 months.''
If I were the correspondent, I would have used preposition ''for'' instead. I speculate you certainly would have done the same thing.

In your appraisal (“Too much focus on grammar indeed can hamper learning how to speak in English”), why do you think it is relatively easier to become a fluent English speaker than a perfect writer in English language? That at least is the experience I am myself getting in my quest for perfect English. I always don't have any difficulty making conversations with my lecturers coming from English-speaking countries in our daily communications, and they even are surprised at how 'good' my English is in comparison to that of others. But troubles begin when I am asked to whip up even a small official letter or write just a brief account about my education life. I will spend a very long time wrestling with my mind over the correctness of a word, the proper preposition to apply, whether or not to use an adjective or adverb, or how long the sentences should be. A sentence that I usually make in a matter of seconds during conversation takes me almost 15  minutes to put it down on a piece of paper.
And that appears to be not a problem restricted to nonnative speakers only: I spend a few minutes every day visiting various global Internet fora run in English, and I shouldn't at all sound ostentatious if I boast myself of having remarkable English-writing skills compared to many contributors there. In straightforward terms, most native speakers whose sentences I come across surely need not ignore signing up for a grammar school to learn how to write well in the language they might be speaking terribly fantastically.

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