World Citizen Wednesdays #26: Tongue Twisters
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Each week we pose a question to members of the fabulous Multicultural Kid Blogs group and share their answers here.
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This week we ask…
What are your favorite tongue twisters?
Annabelle of the piri-piri lexicon: My favourite one when I was learning English was ‘she sells seashells on the seashore’. In French: ‘Les chaussettes de l’archiduchesse sont-elles seches? Archi-seches?’ – are the socks of the duchess dry? Extra dry?
Leanna of All Done Monkey: In English: Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers. If Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers, how many pickled peppers did Peter Piper pick? And in Spanish: Compadre, cómpreme un coco. Compadre, no compro coco. Porque como poco coco como, poco coco compro. (Buy me a coconut. No, I don’t buy coconut. Since I don’t eat much coconut, I don’t buy much coconut).
Cordelia of Multilingual Mama: French: Combien sont ces six saucissons. Ces six saucissons sont six sous. Si ces six saucissons sont six sous , ces six saucissons sont trop chère. Translates to How much are these six sausages? These six saus… Are six cents. If the six…. Are 6 cents, the 6 saus are too expensive. – clearly inflation has not been taken into account here.
Amanda of Miss Panda Chinese: In English: I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream! In Chinese: Chī pú táo bù tǔ pú táo pí, bù chī pú táo dào tǔ pú táo pí. 吃葡萄不吐葡萄皮, 不吃葡萄 倒吐葡萄皮. (Eating the grapes not spitting the grape skin, not eating the grapes, spitting the grape skin.)
Melissa of Where going havo?: Of course there’s the classic Czech vowel-less tongue twister “Strč prst skrz krk,” (stick your finger through your neck), and I also like “Tři sta třicet tři stříbrných křepelek přeletělo přes tři sta třicet tři stříbrných střech” (one of the many versions of this one, Three hundred and thirty three silver quails flew over three hundred and thirty three silver roofs.) A Czech person once told me that the goal of tongue twisters in Czech is not to say them “five times fast” or as fast as possible, but rather to say them AT ALL.
Cecilia of Spanglish House: In Spanish: Tres tristes tigres trigaban trigo en un trigal. or Try saying, “Del pozo al pato del pato al pozo” super fast and many times oops you will be saying something else!
Olga of The European Mama: In Polish: Król Karol kupił królowej Karolinie korale koloru koralowego. (King Karol bought for Queen Karolina corals of coral colour). W czasie suszy szosa sucha, suchą szosą Sasza szedł (In drought, the street is dry, and on a dry street, Sascha walked). “W Szczebrzeszynie chrząszcz brzmi w trzcinie (in Szczebrzeszyn- a city, a bumblebee hummed in the cane), Rewolwer leży na kaloryferze (the gun is on the heating)…Polish is famous for the different “sh”-sounds, and they’re hard to pronounce for foreigners… and some Polish people as well. And there is also: “Wyindywidualizowaliśmy się z rozentuzjazmowanego tłumu”- (We individualized ourselves from the enthusiastic crowd). I also know one in German: Fischers frisch frisierter Fritze frißt frisch frittierte Frisch-Fisch-Frikadellen. Fisher’s freshly coiffed Fritze (a name, I think?) eats freshly fried fresh fish meat balls). And one in English: “How much wood would a woodchuck chuck, if a woodchuck could chuck wood?
Ute of expatsincebirth: Italian: Sopra la panca la capra campa, sotto la panca la capra crepa. (On the bench the goat lives, under the bench the goat dies), Sono un setacciasassi, ho un setaccio di sassi setacciati e un setaccio di sassi non setacciati, perché sono un setacciasassi (I’m a stone siever, I have a sieve with sieved stones and a sieve with not sieved stones, because I’m a stone siever), Mi attacchi i tacchi tu che attacchi i tacchi? Io attaccarti i tacchi a te? Attaccati te i tuoi tacchi tu che attacchi i tacchi! (Can you fix my heels, you who fix heels? Me fix your heels? Fix your heels (yourself) you who fix the heels) and the same in a dialect of Milan (Northern Italy): Tì che te tacchet i tacc, taccum a mì i me! Mì taccat i tacc a tì? Taccheti tì i tò tacc, tì che te tacchet i tacc! // German: Hundert hurtige Hunde hetzen hinter hundert hurtigen Hasen her (Hundert swift dogs chase hundert swift hares), Wenn Fliegen hinter Fliegen fliegen, fliegen Fliegen Fliegen nach. (If flies fly behind flies, the flies fly behind flies : this one plays with the same sound of the noun and the verb)
Thanks to all the bloggers who shared their answers here! You can read answers to earlier questions in our previous installments of World Citizen Wednesday, including tips for traveling with kids!
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