Friday, November 04, 2005

EFL - Ironing out the wrinkles

There are a few problem words my students get stuck on time and time again. Here are a few of the most common ones:

blame and critise

A common Korean problem is the use of the word blame, when the speaker means criticise. We can blame the makers of Korean-English dictionaries.

CRITICISE verb - to express disapproval of someone or something.
BLAME verb - to say or think that someone or something did something wrong or is responsible for something bad happening.

나무라다 (tell someone off)
비난하다 (criticise)
[실수.잘못에 대해] 책망하다 (blame)

fun and funny

So many EFL learners get these two confused, especially the main meaning of each. Not surprising really as they're very similar-looking!

FUN noun [U] - pleasure, enjoyment, amusement
FUN adjective [before noun] - enjoyable
FUNNY adjective - amusing; causing laughter

즐거움 / 재미 (fun - noun)
즐거운 / 유쾌한 (fun - adj)
우스운 (funny)

Have fun (= Enjoy yourself)! 즐겁게 지내!
I really enjoyed your party - it was such good fun. 재미있었네!
She's great fun to be with. 그녀는 같이 있으면 진짜 재미있어.
It's no fun/not much fun (= not enjoyable) having to work on Saturdays.
a fun-loving girl 잘 노는 여자 / 장난기가 있는 여자
There are lots of fun (= enjoyable) things to do here. 여기 할 즐거운 게 많다.
Do you know any funny jokes?
It's a really funny film. 진짜 웃기는 영화다!
It's not funny - don't laugh! 우습지 않는 것인데 웃지 마!

lecture and class

I get mildly offended every time I get a well-meant compliment from students on my 'lecture'. I assure you I try my upmost not to lecture anyone. In English these have very different connotations.

CLASS noun -
1 a group of students who are taught together at school, college or university:
2 a period of time in which students are taught something:
LECTURE noun -
1 a formal talk on a serious or specialist subject given to a group of people, especially students:
2 an angry or serious talk given to someone in order to criticize their behaviour

수업 (class)
강의 / 강연; 설교 (lecture)

Which class are you in this year?
She gave the whole class extra homework for a week.
My last class ends at 4 o'clock. 4시에 내 수업이 끝나는데.
I was told off for talking in class. 수업 중에 나는 떠들었기 때문에 꾸짖받았다.
I missed my aerobics class yesterday. 어제 에어로빅 강좌에 결석했다.
We went to a lecture on Italian art.
Who's giving the lecture this afternoon?
My dad gave me a lecture on the evils of alcohol last night.

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