give him some scolding

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Ptak, Oct 23, 2008.

  1. Ptak Senior Member

    (A dad is calling to a kindergarten and talking to a teacher about his son; she tells him that his son behaves bad)
    - Hallo, this is Jacky's father... What is he doing?! Well, give him some scolding...

    The Russian sentence that I'm trying to translate doesn't sound cruel... rather a bit funny :) How does sound the English sentence "Well, give him some scolding" ? I need some phrase which would fit the context and doesn't sound cruel... Thanks.
  2. Thomas Tompion Senior Member

    Southwest France
    English - England
    Hi Ptak,

    I wouldn't say Give him some scolding but Give him a scolding, or Give him a good scolding. Neither expression sounds harsh in English, or comic, unless the context creates this effect.
  3. se16teddy

    se16teddy Senior Member

    London but from Yorkshire
    English - England
    I agree with Thomas: scoldings are usually countable.
  4. sdgraham

    sdgraham Senior Member

    Oregon, USA
    USA English
    "Give him a good scolding" seems be current BE, but not AE. We might say "scold him" but more colloquially, we would probably say "chew him out."

    Or... just say "discipline him" without being specific."

  5. Copyright

    Copyright Senior Member

    American English
    And I agree with you... but the uncountable idea of a "whole heap of scolding" or a "generous portion of scolding" has its charms. :)
  6. AngelEyes

    AngelEyes Senior Member

    English - United States

    The little boy is only five-years-old, so I'd feel the need to make whatever is said not cruel or overly-frightening. I hope this isn't too strong for your purposes:

    You might try:

    "...well, show him who's boss. Lay down the law and give the little tyke a (good) scolding."

    Thomas Tompion: I like your addition of good.
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2008
  7. Copyright

    Copyright Senior Member

    American English
    Possibly depends on age... I grew up in the Midwest with "Give him a good scolding," so it still sounds better than the rather more plain, "Give him a scolding."
  8. Ptak Senior Member

    Thanks everyone.

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