It’s a question that keeps croaking across Canada.
For years, the language is an international mess, with French and Spanish dominating.
But in the last few years, English has taken a big hit.
Some students in Canada’s English-speaking provinces are finding it hard to speak English as their first language.
And some are even learning English as a second language, but with a foreign accent.
“I think the biggest thing for me is that my parents speak English so it’s not an issue,” said the 20-year-old, who asked to be identified only by his first name, George.
But George and other young Canadians in their 20s are struggling with how to express themselves in the language.
George has spoken in English for about three years, with the exception of a few classes at an English-language high school in his hometown of London, Ont.
But in a class in May, he said, one teacher refused to let him use the words he wanted to use in English, such as “sigh,” “laugh” and “gulp.”
“It was just a total failure,” George said.
The English-only school, which George’s parents attended, told CBC News that English was a core language and students were encouraged to learn other languages in class.
As part of a class on grammar, George asked why he was being taught French instead of English.
“I’m trying to get them to understand what I’m trying be saying in French instead,” he said.
“They said, ‘What are you trying to say in French?'”
George said he had no idea what French meant, so he asked a teacher to repeat his questions, but this time he got no reply.
Then George took a look at his textbook and noticed that he was not using French as a foreign language.
“It’s just an English question,” George recalled.
In English, he says he’s used words like “breathe” and phrases like “a breath.”
“I don’t know how they got it in English,” he added.
After a few days of frustration, George decided to ask the English- only teacher, a native speaker of French, to try out his French and see what would happen.
He learned that he had not used the word “breath” in French, but he did not need to.
A day later, George was able to write the words “a breathing breath” on his essay and pass it along to another student.
So far, his teacher has not been able to understand George’s French.
And he said it’s frustrating that the teacher can’t understand what he’s trying to communicate.
“If it’s something that I’m going to use to say something and it doesn’t sound right, that’s really frustrating,” he told CBC.
Language barriers aside, George and many other young Canadian who speak English say they’re not alone.
English is becoming increasingly popular as a first language for students in places such as Europe and Asia.
But for some, the struggle to use English as the first language is more a personal one.
The popularity of English in the U.S. has also prompted an uptick in its use in Canada, said Mark McQueen, a professor of English and Canadian studies at the University of Toronto.
In the past decade, English- speaking Canadians in Canada have spoken to the U