i used to believe

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foreign languages

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When I learned there were foreign languages and seven continents, I thought each continent had one language. Then I thought that I could form my own language, but I'd have to find new land first.

Jessica Aspra
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My grandmother's native tongue was Japanese and she pronounced English words very poorly. Up through college, my mom would say and even write in papers "asuna" as a word, not realizing that that's how her mother pronounced "as soon as."

nihonjin
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When I first got elected to student government in my first year of university (so, I wasn't a kid then, I was NINETEEN years old, lol), whenever we talked about moving "in and out of camera," I kept looking around to see if I could find an actual camera hidden in the ceiling or something. One day, I asked this one really nice older guy where the camera was, and, fighting back the urge to laugh at me, he explained to me that it was just a Latin term to distinguish private, closed-door discussions from matters where we didn't have to worry about confidentiality so much.

Emily (still looking for that camera!!! ;) )
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When I was younger (8 or 9), I used to believe that only people who spoke English could write songs or poetry because when you translated the English words into any other language they didn't rhyme anymore.

Scott
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My young son (now 23) when asked what language they spoke in Turkey, stated most seriously "Gobblish" (gobble, gobble)

Joe W
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I used to believe that words that rhymed in English would rhyme in every other language as well. How else could a song be translated and still sound like a song, right?

Anon
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When I was in fourth grade, I became fascinated with the life of Helen Keller. I read every book I could find. I taught myself the alphabet and numbers in sign language. In 5th grade, our chorus director taught us a song in sign to sing and perform. It must have been around that time I realized some people do actually communicate this way. I believed that if I continued to learn more sign language, that I would have children who were deaf and would be able to hear me when I spoke to them. I stopped learning more about the language at that point.

Anon
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When i was little, i used to wonder why people who spoke foreign languages had such weird accents.

i was like why dont they just speak with a "normal" accent, which was american for me. i wanted to see if i could make out some of the letters they were saying. i then found out that each language had its own accent and english style sounded not normal to a spanish speaker.

chris
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I once asked a classmate whose mother is Irish, "So, do you know how to speak Irish?".
She gave me a funny look & said, "They speak English".
Cripes! I had mixed up the Welsh & Irish!
That moment has always been one I wish had never happened.

N.A.
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I used to believe that everyone thought in English, so people in stores and such that could speak Spanish must be SUPER smart.

Y
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ON my first day of primary school, i came home having learnt many interesting things. My teacher had a big poster that said "Everyone Smiles in the Same Language" I thought that this meant that there were many different kinds of smiling, not just the happy one that i knew. I figured that there were different ways of smiling to show each emotion, and that anyone in the world could understand them. I went home and announced to the family (we're Welsh and my grandparents, who lived with us, didn't believe in english in the home) that we could cut down on noise and everyone would understand each other if we all just used "smilese"

Bethan
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I used to think that if you spoke several languages, you could only do one at a time. So, if something interesting happened when you were in French mode, you wouldn't remember it if someone asked you in English. I believed this for a very long time.

Anon
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As a young child I attended a Mexican run religious pre-school. The nuns there tried to teach us our colors by song, for years I sang it with their accent, "Red, orange, jell-o, green blue purple..." My mom still laughs at that one!

Fran
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When my husband applied for his first job when he was around 15 or so...
The application asked if he spoke a foreign language he put Enlgish. He got the job, I'm assuming because he made the interviewer laugh so hard when he read over the app. I asked him why he would put that. He said well I of course speak Amerian because I live in America & I took English in high-school so at the time it made sense. He also trys to play it off that he was nervous as it was his first job interview. Now when he mumbles something & I can't understand him...I'll ask him to let me know if he's speaking American or English so I can translate it as I am not bilingual.LOL!

S.L.H.
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When I was 7 our family decided to move to Dubai for afew years. I thought that I'd completely stop speaking English and I'd start speaking Arabic and Arabic would take over English and I mae my friends swear to teach me English again when I got back

Bianca
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my friend thought that French was pronounced like English backwards, because we live in Canada, and English is on one side of packaging, and French on the opposite side.

Anon
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when 1 was 5 i went on my first holiday abroad to spain and i thought soon as i got there i could instantly talk spanish and will come back unable to speak english

joey.k
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when i was three, my family moved from maryland to georgia. i thought they spoke a different language in georgia and before we moved, i kept asking my mom to teach me how to speak georgian.

Eve
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When we used to go to Germany my dad told me about 'oerworms' (earworms) which means wen u get a song stuck in your head. until i was 14 i used to think earworm was a real english word. now i think bout it i must have confused a lot of people.

Jamie
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I used to think that English was the only spoken language.One day in preschool my teacher invited a mom who who whould teach us French, when my teacher told me that I said,"I already know how to make french fries!"

Emmathel
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