IDIOM: RUN-OF-THE-MILL

  IDIOM: RUN-OF-THE-MILL – this idiom is used to mean that something is very ordinary, normal or common-place. Example: I wasn’t very impressed by their wedding.  The whole celebration was very run-of-the-mill.  I doubt I will remember it at all in a few years. If you are using run-of-the-mill in your writing, be sure to remember to punctuate it properly! …

TRUMP UP – PHRASAL VERB

  TRUMP UP – PHRASAL VERB to trump up – to invent something bad to cause problems for someone else / to lie or create a falsehood. Example: (1). In some communist countries, innocent people are put into prison on trumped up charges. (2). He trumped up an excuse so that we wouldn’t have to go to the party. CLICK …

LIST OF CONTRACTED VERB FORMS IN ENGLISH

Shortened Forms of the Verb ‘to be’ I’m I am you’re you are he’s he is she’s she is we’re we are it’s it is isn’t is not aren’t are not they’re they are there’s there is wasn’t was not weren’t  were not   Shortened Forms of the Verb ‘to have’ I’ve I have you’ve  you have he’s he has …

CONFUSING WORDS / FALSE FRIENDS IN ENGLISH (PEOPLE)

STRANGER or FOREIGNER A stranger is a person that you have never met before. Example: My mother always told me that I shouldn’t talk to strangers. A foreigner is a person who is not in their home country. Example: An Italian living in France is a foreigner. Pay ATTENTION to the pronunuciation of the word foreigner BrE /ˈfɒrənə(r)/ An acquaintance …

MAKE – WORD COLLOCATION

EXPRESSIONS WITH MAKE make a promise make a suggestion make a mistake / an error make amends make love make friends / enemies make peace / war make an effort make an excuse MAKE – COLLOCATION WITH FOOD OR DRINKS make breakfast / lunch / dinner make some coffee / tea / pasta make a sandwich make a bite to …

GO / DO / PLAY (for sports)

GO + verb+ING go swimming go running / jogging go riding / cycling PLAY a game play tennis / squash play football play rugby DO + activity do gymnastics do yoga do karate / tai chi / judo do ballet

CONFUSING WORDS: ROAD vs. STREET

Streets are found in towns, villages or cities.  As long as there are houses on the side of the road, you can refer to it as a street. The word road can be used for villages, towns and cities but also for roads in the countryside.  So, you can have a road in a village and a road in the …

IDIOM – TO SWITCH OFF & ON

Meaning (1) – The literal meaning of the verb to switch on or off means to start or stop just about anything that uses electricity or needs some other form of power to be used.  So, you can switch on the lights, switch on an engine, switch off the T.V. In Context  (1) –  Can you switch on the heater?  …

DISCOVER, FIND OUT, UNCOVER – WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?

The difference between to discover and to find out is a fine one. DISCOVER Use the verb to discover to talk about information and things that are completely new.  You can also use discover if you are the first person to learn some new information. Examples: Captain Cook discovered Antarctica. Sir Alexander Fleming discovered Penicillin when he forgot to clean …

CONFUSING WORDS: SAY vs. TELL

Say and Tell are often confused by English learners. The two words have a very similar meaning and function.  When in doubt, follow this general rule: SAY something (to someone) TELL someone (something) WHEN TO USE SAY Use Say before a word / sentence / phrase, name. Use Say to greet people, to ask a question, to exclaim Say hello or …