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I for one am glad to be a native English speaker. There are so many peculiarities and I will list just a few starting with idioms. A blessing in disguise. Meaning: A good thing that initially seemed bad. Why would a blessing be wearing any kind of disguise? A dime a dozen. Meaning: Something that is very common. If you spoke Spanish and looked in your English dictionary, that saying wouldn’t make any sense. Biting off more than you can chew. Meaning: Taking on more than you’re prepared. Again, if your L1 isn’t English, your dictionary wouldn’t help. Bite the bullet: Meaning: To have to do something you’re not particularly happy ab out but have to anyways. Why on earth would someone bite a bullet? Doing something at the drop of a hat. Meaning: To do something when asked. But from a non-English learner, this looks like you’re literally waiting for someone to drop a hat before starting your task. Fit as a fiddle. Meaning: Very healthy. How can a non-English learner ever expect to get this one? On the ball. Meaning: Doing a good job, or prompt. I could go on and on but will finish with one of my favourite idioms: Speak of the devil. Meaning: When the person you have just been talking about arrives. Try to explain to your students how every “C” in Pacific Ocean is different. Or how tough, cough, dough and through are all pronounced differently? What about they’re, their and there . In and on are also fun. If someone is in a plane, or on a plane, it’s the same meaning. But if someone is in a house or on a house, it’s a different meaning entirely. Take red, read and read. One is a colour, one means you have read a book and one is simple present. The pronunciation of “X” can cause a real headache. Take any names that begin with the letter “X” such as Xavier, Ximena or Xander and they are pronounced with a “Z” sound. Now take the word X-ray and it’s pronounced differently. Spelling between Canadian and American English can be a tough one to grasp. Why do Canadians use “U” in words like colour but not in words like dollar? Can someone tell me why there’s a “D” in fridge when there isn’t one in refrigerator? How about this one? Laid is pronounced like paid but not like said. Said is pronounced like bread, but not like bead. Bead is pronounced like lead, but not like lead. Try explain that to a student! One of my favourite poems: English Is Hard We’ll begin with a box, and the plural is boxes. But the plural of ox becomes oxen, not oxes. One fowl is a goose, but two are called geese. Yet the plural of moose should never be meese. You may find a lone mouse, or a nest fill of mice, yet the plural of house is houses, not hice. If the plural of man is always called men, why shouldnth the plural of pan be called pen? If I speak of my foot and show you my feet, and I give you my boot, would a pair not be beet? If one is a tooth and a whole set are teeth, why shouldn’t the plural of booth be called beeth? Then one may be that, and three would be those. Yet hat in the plural would never be hose. \and the plural of cat is cats not close. We speak of a brother and also breathren, but when we say mother we never say methren. Then the masculine pronouns are he, his and him, but the plural is not the, this and thim! Authour Unknown. Found on the web on Pinterest.