The following are mistakes often made by foreign students, is it possible to identify probable causes and how to overcome them?





As far as I can see, they are all (except the second example) direct translations of phrases from other languages.
What advice would I give to students making similar mistakes? Try to think in English! Not an easy task - just perseverance
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where are you from vincent?. I would say yes it is possible to indentify certain mistakes Spanish people usually make and I have a long list of them somewhere in my files, for example one of them would be the use of the definite article. We use articles a lot more than English people do because we do need them in Spanish, so Spanish students tend to overuse the article when they learn English. ( except for The Internet, Internet no article in Spanish).

The same would apply to the use of certain tenses. The present perfect is my favourite. I don't think American people use correctly either from a British point of view. Students try to use it the way it works in their own language.

However, there are some structures which are completely different and which have to be learned from scratch. Some of these are easier to teach because they present no interference with their mother tongue.
correcting younger learners mistakes I need some informations connected with it
"I am not understanding" isn't wrong, it's just uncommon and awkward. "I am understanding" is present continuous and "I don't understand" is simple present. In some contexts "I am not understanding" could be more correct than "I don't understand" as the latter implies a lack of capability in understanding while the former just implies a current inability to understand. That's something you'd have to explain to them on a case by case basis, that colloquially "I don't understand" is used instead of "I am not understanding" because grammatically there isn't anything wrong with it. You could also explain that the sentence as constructed expects but doesn't explicitly require some form of qualifying completion, so "I am not understanding what you are saying/talking about/telling me" would be expected in most cases but not all.

"He's from Riverpool" is a contraction of "He is from Riverpool", which unless Riverpool isn't the name of a place is completely correct. I'm assuming "Riverpool" is actually "Liverpool"

"The life is good" would usually be said "Life is good", but depending on context "The life is good" could be correct - it would have to be in response to something. So without the context that it was used in it's going to be hard to pinpoint what the problem really is. It's another case of it being correct but uncommon usage.

"I've met him yesterday" is also correct, although again uncommon. "I did meet him yesterday" and "I met him yesterday" would be more common usages. "I've met him" would be used in the context when the question "Have you met him?" would be used. In this case "Yesterday" is pre-empting the question "When?" It's a giveaway that the student's a non-native speaker but grammatically there isn't anything you can correct, you just have to explain that it's not what is used.

"He is happy despite he is poor" looks like they just learned how to say "despite" as "He is happy although he is poor" is correct. So depending on the students existing vocabulary it could simply be a problem of assuming that despite means the same thing or works in the same way as although or even though. Despite is a preposition and requires an object, while although is a coordinating conjunction, the student is using despite as if it were a coordinating conjunction.

I hope this helps.
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Hey Maj, could you please post your list of common mistakes made by Spanish speakers?