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Exercises for Lesson 7 Part 1 

hirashin

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Dear native English speakers,
would you check the sentences of my translation exercises?
1 次の英文を日本語に訳しなさい。

① Be careful. Don't make the same mistake again!

② He says he will leave our company. I tried to make him change his mind, but in vain.

③ "Would you translate this sentence into English?" "With pleasure."

④ The police officer asked me to describe the person I saw in the restaurant yesterday.

⑤ I was surprised when the police car stopped right in front of my house.

⑥ When someone entered the room, the speaker stopped for a moment and then continued his talk.

⑦ People living next door are very friendly. (friendly = 友好的な,気さくだ)

⑧ It is his unique way of thinking that always surprises us.

⑨ I was astonished when I saw the sum on the electricity bill.

⑩ Mike Brown's selfish behavior at the party made everyone angry.

2 次の日本語を[ ]の指定に従って英訳しなさい。 [ ]内で指定された語は、必要があれば、適当な形に変えること。
①これらのお話は英語とフランス語に翻訳されました。[translate を用いて8語で]
My answer: These stories were translated into English and French.

②みんなは彼を説得しようとしたが、彼の気持ちは変わらなかった。[persuade, change, mind を用いて]
My answer: Everybody tried to persuade him, but he didn't change his mind.

③隣の女性は歌手で、毎日歌の練習をしている。
My answer: The woman next door is a singer. She practices singing every day.


Hirashin
 
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Michael2

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I think they are all alright, if a little formal. I would change

I was astonished when I saw the sum on the electricity bill.

though. I would usually say "...when I saw how much the electricity bill was"
 
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hirashin

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Thanks for the help, Michael2.
OK. I'll change it into your version : when I saw how much the electricity bill was.
Do you normally use the term "bill" in this way?

For 2 ③
(a) The woman next door is a singer
(b) The woman living next door is a singer.
Do you use either of them with the same meaning?
 

Buntaro

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Hirashin,

Your sentences are technically correct. But I thought you might like to hear the native English versions (at least from an American's point of view).

He says he will leave our company.
--> He says he is going to quit.

I tried to make him change his mind, but in vain.
--> I tried to make him change his mind, but I was just wasting my time.

Would you translate this sentence into English? With pleasure.
--> Would you translate this sentence into English? I'd be happy to.

--> People living next door are very friendly.
The people living next door are really friendly.

I was astonished when I saw the sum on the electricity bill.
--> I was shocked when I saw how much the electricity bill was.
(“Astonished” sounds a little pretentious.)

Do you normally use the term "bill" in this way?
Yes. We can also say:
...when I saw how much the electric bill was.

(a) The woman next door is a singer
(b) The woman living next door is a singer.
Do you use either of them with the same meaning?
Yes.
 

hirashin

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Thanks for the help, Buntaro.

>He says he will leave our company.
--> He says he is going to quit.

I wonder if British people normally use this or not.

>I tried to make him change his mind, but in vain.
--> I tried to make him change his mind, but I was just wasting my time.

How about this?
I tried to make him change his mind, but it didn't work.

>Would you translate this sentence into English? With pleasure.
--> Would you translate this sentence into English? I'd be happy to.

Is it that American people don't use the phrase "With pleasure"?
How about "I'd be glad to"?

--> People living next door are very friendly.
The people living next door are really friendly.

"The" is always hard to use properly. How about this, then?
People living on the small island are very friendly.
Is this OK?

>I was astonished when I saw the sum on the electricity bill.
--> I was shocked when I saw how much the electricity bill was.
(“Astonished” sounds a little pretentious.)
Is it that American people don't use the term "astonish"?

>We can also say:
...when I saw how much the electric bill was.

Do you also use the terms "the gas bill" and "the phone bill"?
What other terms including "bill" do you use? (Am I saying it right?)
 

Buntaro

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I tried to make him change his mind, but it didn't work.
--> This sounds good.

Is it that American people don't use the phrase "With pleasure"?
--> Correct. Americans avoid the phrase.

How about "I'd be glad to"?
--> This sounds good.

"The" is always hard to use properly.
--> So are わ and が. “The” and “わ/が” represent similar concepts.

How about this, then?
People living on the small island are very friendly.
Is this OK?
--> The meanings are different.

A. “The people who live on the island are friendly.” --> In this situation, “the” is used for a group of people, where the members are easily identifiable and easily countable. Also, in this situation, “the people” means “those people”.

B. “People who live on the island are friendly.” --> In this example, the number of people on the island is hard to count, or the members of the groups changes often. This also has a feeling that the number of people on the island is large. Let's look at some examples.

C. People who live in glass houses shouldn't thrown stones. (This is an English ことわざ.)
D. The people who live in glass houses shouldn't thrown stones.
--> C is correct, D is a mistake.

E. People who sent me email about my misfortune were very kind.
F. The people who sent me email about my misfortune were very kind.
--> F is correct, E sounds strange.

Is it that American people don't use the term "astonish"?
--> Right, Americans usually do not use it.

Do you also use the terms "the gas bill" and "the phone bill"?
--> Yes, we do.

What other terms including "bill" do you use? (Am I saying it right?)
--> We usually say "bill". It is used for all utilities, for example, the (natural) gas bill, the electric bill, the water bill (and the the phone bill). Yes, you are saying it right, although it might be better to say, "What other terms besides "bill" do you use?"
 

hirashin

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Thanks for the help, Buntaro. By the way, why is your screen name Buntaro? What is the "bun" in Kanji? 文 or 分?
 

Buntaro

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Thanks for the help, Buntaro. By the way, why is your screen name Buntaro? What is the "bun" in Kanji? 文 or 分?
文太郎です。よろしく!

I like 文太郎 because I think it's かっくい! (Or maybe it's just じじくさい, I don't know...)
 

hirashin

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Oh, you are 文太郎. How did you learn Japanese? Have you ever lived in Japan?
 

Buntaro

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先生!

I lived in Tokyo for several years. I used to teach at 日米会話学院 in 東京. The most important thing in learning a foreign language is being placed in situations where people only speak the target language (Japanese). For example, I would go to the same “mom and pop” Chinese restaurant every night for dinner. (People who work at a mom and pop restaurant do NOT speak English.) I tried to strike up conversations with them every night. It worked. This is the best way to do it. I also wrote a book in Japanese at that time. Writing that book really helped me learn Japanese.

I would add that the most important thing in learning a language is motivation. I enjoy studying Japanese. If your students do not enjoy learning English, they will never learn English.
 
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hirashin

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Buntaro, you lived in Japan for several years. But how did you learn written Japanese? Did you learn it by yourself?

>I would add that the most important thing in learning a language is motivation. I enjoy studying Japanese. If your students do not enjoy learning English, they will never learn English.

I agree. Most Japanese high school students learn English only because they want to enter a college. They do not enjoy learning it. For some reason, almost all the Japanese middle and high school students are forced to learn English here. I don't think that's a nice system. English is not the only foreign language. At least we should be able to choose the foreign language to learn. Chinese is more imoportant than or at least as important as English for Japanese, I think. I don't see why Chinese is not taught in Japanese schools.
 

Buntaro

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Buntaro, you lived in Japan for several years. But how did you learn written Japanese? Did you learn it by yourself?
I started by writing short stories in Japanese (in kanji). I would write sentence by sentence, then have Japanese people proof-read each sentence. In the beginning it was very difficult, but after some time I got better and better at it. This was definitely the best way for me.

English is not the only foreign language.
Do all Japanese college entrance contain an English test? If a Japanese student studies French, in high school can they take a college entrance with a French test instead of an English test?
 

hirashin

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In Japan, almost every student has to study English. I think more than 99% high school students are forced to study English even if some of them hate it. Very few students study any other foreign language in middle and high schools here. I think it's a waste of time to teach English to unwilling students.

>Do all Japanese college entrance contain an English test? If a Japanese student studies French, in high school can they take a college entrance with a French test instead of an English test?

Not really. Students who want to enter a national university have to take an exam including a foreign language such as English, German, French, Chinese or Korean. Almost every student chooses English because very few of them study another language.
 

Buntaro

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I think it's a waste of time to teach English to unwilling students.

You need students who are geniuses at English! Here is a Japanese student who is a genius at learning English:


 
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