US or UK spelling?

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US or UK spelling?

Postby SAHM_TAN » Fri Apr 15, 2011 2:30 pm

Hi,

Just wanted to check, in schools, do they learn US or UK spelling? I know only a handful of words are affected but just wanted to find out.

Thanks

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Re: US or UK spelling?

Postby TREX8 » Fri Apr 15, 2011 6:02 pm

SAHM_TAN wrote:Hi,

Just wanted to check, in schools, do they learn US or UK spelling? I know only a handful of words are affected but just wanted to find out.

Thanks


In schools, we encourage UK spelling especially since the majority of our "O" and "A" level examinations are still closely associated with Cambridge. However, I understand that US spelling is allowed as long as the child is consistent. That is, not some words in UK spelling and some words in US spelling within the same composition/essay.

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Postby jtoh » Fri Apr 15, 2011 9:55 pm

English spelling is still the first choice in schools. I believe schools would prefer students to spell 'colour' over 'color', 'favourite' over 'favorite', 'organise' over 'organize' etc.

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Postby snowman.697 » Fri Apr 15, 2011 10:47 pm

uk spelling. only uk spelling is allowed in the psle but for your gce n/o/a level exams you can choose to write in american english but need to be consistent (ie either all british or all american)

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Postby SAHM_TAN » Fri Apr 15, 2011 11:38 pm

Thanks for the infor. I googled and found there are more than a handful of differences between US and UK spelling. The differences are not limited to spelling but think it's too complicated to explain to the kids.

Hmmm, this means for storybooks, I should try to get those published by UK authors? So that the kids will not get confused?

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Postby ANobleNerd » Sat Apr 16, 2011 12:51 pm

UK spelling. UK/Singapore vocabulary.

However, in the light that there are cases where Sg kids are overseas for years and study in a US system, the PSLE allows for US spelling, only if the child maintains the US spelling throughout. Consistency is key.

Books like Harry Potter has both a US and UK version. I tend to get UK versions of books, but many books our kids are exposed to are written in the US. I wouldn't be too concern about it; our kids are usually able to make the difference after a while about the spelling norms and what's acceptable in school.

In Singapore's context, keep to Singapore's vocab as far as possible, but most teachers are fine with some interchangeable phrases.
Eg, we say flat, not apartment; tap, rather than faucet; lift, rather than elevator; jacket or sweater, rather than jumper... and certainly void deck - which neither English would have a concept of. :wink:

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Postby SAHM_TAN » Sat Apr 16, 2011 1:19 pm

Hi ANobleNerd,

Thanks for highlighting the part about vocab. I did not realise there are so many differences between UK and US English till I googled. This all came about because I'm tempted to buy a literacy educational item. It's very expensive and I'm trying to decide is it a need or just good to have.......It was created from US and I suddenly had this thought about UK English.......

They are still young, so want to lay the foundation with the English that's most commonly used in school. When they are older, they will be able to understand the differences.

Now I have to be more careful too, I learnt English through intuition and reading. It's hard to explain...... so I do not bother about remembering rules. Now I have kids going to P1 and suddenly I find myself wanting to understand the rules........

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Postby ANobleNerd » Sat Apr 16, 2011 1:46 pm

I think exposure and a print rich environment goes a long way in fluency in language. Just allow your kids to read lots of books - it really won't matter if it's US or UK English.

Let's put it this way, most of the movies and cartoons they watch are from America, and the vocab used is American, but our textbooks and newpapers carry a distinctly UK spelling and vocab - so are people confused?

Whether UK or US English won't stop our kids from using the language to a certain point of fluency, until a point where they try to make sense of why a certain word sounds more 'correct' than another. Before this level can occur, there would be a need for the learner to have lots of material absorbed first, though.

When they are older - late middle child - they might be able to articulate better what the difference is. However, I've worked with American amateur writers attempting to write British fiction who find it very tough too, as it's not merely just changing vocabs, but idiomatic phrases, and cultural mindsets that don't make sense once it crosses the Atlantic Ocean.

That said, I won't necessarily be too concerned over this. As long as they can get their point across clearly, or are able to comprehend an age-appropriate text, they should be fine. :D

There is a similar situation in Mandarin too. China's Mandarin, Chinese as a Second Language in Hong Kong, and Singapore's Mandarin has very different vocab. Taiwan's Mandarin has different vocab AND writing. Therefore, when our kids read a book from China, the vocab could be utterly different from what they are familiar with in Singapore. Bicycle, for instance, is jiao ta che here, while in China, it's zi xing che.

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Postby SAHM_TAN » Mon Apr 18, 2011 4:50 pm

Thanks for sharing

Yes, agree the need for print rich environment.

My older one is learning to spell now, so am a tad more worried. Maybe I'm too kancheong spider.

I wonder, are we following the China Chinese standard? I notice that in Chinese news, they have changed the Chinese names for countries.

Am curious, why would Am writers want to write Br. friction?

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Postby snowman.697 » Mon Apr 18, 2011 7:37 pm

Different versions mah

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