my picBy Agnieszka, Founder and CEO at GoingEnglish

 

COMMON ERRORS SPANISH SPEAKERS MAKE IN ENGLISH

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If you’re a native Spanish speaker learning English, you’ve probably encountered many difficulties mastering it. In this post, we’re discussing 13 most common errors made by Spanish speakers. Hopefully, you won’t make any of these mistakes again after reading this post! :)


PRONUNCIATION:

  • Dropping h
    The Spanish tend to omit ’h’, for example: hat, humble, hectic, horrendous, huge. Read ’h’ in English!
  • Jam vs ham
    I love strawberry jams /dʒ/
    That’s my favourite ham /h/
    Don’t mix the two! If you ask someone for a strawberry ham, they might think you’re crazy 😀
  • Would vs could vs good
    Read these three words aloud. If all of them sound the same to you, click on each word to listen to its pronunciation. Do you hear the difference now?
  • -ED ending
    The Spanish say:
    I work two days ago.
    We talk last week.
    She start working as a waitress 5 years ago.
    CORRECT:
    I worked /t/ two days ago.
    We talked /t/ last week.
    She started /ɪd/ working as a waitress 5 years ago.

QUESTION TAGS

The Spanish say:

  • You did it, no?
  • She is hungry, no?

CORRECT:

  • You did it, didn’t you?
  • She is hungry, isn’t she?

DROPPING THE SUBJECT

The Spanish say:

  • Is Jane at home? Yes, is at home.
  • Is important to be kind to others.
  • Is never too late to learn a new language.

CORRECT:

  • Is Jane at home? Yes, she is at home.
  • It is important to be kind to others.
  • It is never too late to learn a new language.

BORING or BORED?

  • I’m bored. = Estoy aburrido.
  • I’m boring. = Soy aburrido.

TOO or TOO MUCH or VERY MUCH?

The Spanish say:

  • I like it too much. —> it carries a negative meaning.
    CORRECT:
    I like it very much OR I like it a lot.
  • It’s too much hot.
    CORRECT:
    It’s too hot.

IMPORTANT:

  • TOO + adjective (negative) : too hot, too cold.
    • I don’t like it here. It’s too hot.
  • TOO MUCH + uncountable noun (negative) : too much sugar, too much cheese.
    • She won’t like this pizza, it has too much cheese.

PEOPLE IS or PEOPLE ARE?

The Spanish say:
People is nice.

CORRECT:
People are nice.

MAKE or DO?

How to avoid these mistakes? Learn collocations, not single words: to make an effort, to do one’s best, to make a noise, to do one’s hair, etc.

USE OF PRESENT PERFECT FOR PAST

The Spanish say:
Yesterday I have talked with Lauren.

CORRECT:
Yesterday I talked with Lauren.

Use Past Simple when talking about the past!

DOUBLE NEGATIVE

The Spanish say:
I didn’t do nothing.

CORRECT:
I didn’t do anything.

FOR or TO?

The Spanish say:

  • You need to work hard for achieve a success OR You need to work hard for to achieve a success.
  • She has to learn for win the contest.

CORRECT:

  • You need to work hard to achieve a success.
  • She has to learn to win the contest.

I AM AGREE or I AGREE?

The Spanish say:
I am agree with you.

CORRECT:
I agree with you.

TAKE THE DECISION or MAKE THE DECISION?

CORRECT:
MAKE the decision

EVERYBODY / ANYBODY / NO ONE /…

The Spanish say:

  • Everybody have three chances.
  • No one like him.

CORRECT:

  • Everybody has three chances.
  • No one likes him.

Do you make any of these mistakes? Want to add something to our list? Let us know!

Learn English in Spain! Choose your teacher: www.goingenglish.com/es/team