Thursday, November 1, 2007

Correct Spelling and ESL Students

During private ESL lessons with my adult students, I usually take any opportunity I can to provide "real life" learning. I think I've already written about helping my students to write checks properly and safely.

Another thing that often comes up when my students write checks for ESL tutoring fees is the spelling of the word "forty." More than half of my ESL students over the years have written "fourty." That makes perfect sense, since "four" is spelled with a "u."

This unnecessary change is just part of the English language.

Today, as I deposited some checks at my bank, I found it interesting that the bank teller (a native-born American and native English speaker) commented that whenever she sees "forty" she immediately thinks to herself that the checkwriter doesn't know how to spell. Then her next thought reminds her that it is correctly spelled without a "u."

Just another way that English is not logical, even to native English speakers.


No comments: