Little and A little – A little

Little and A little – A little Don’t Say:She took little exercise and felt much better. Say:She took a littlfe exercise and felt much better. Note:Little means not much and emphasises the smartness of the amount. It s distinguished from a little which means at least some.

big, large, great and tall

We use big mostly in an informal style. We’ve got a big new house. Get your big feet off my flowers. That’s a really big improvement. You’re making a big mistake. In a more formal style, we prefer large or great. Large is used with concrete nouns (the names of things you can see, touch,…

apologize / sorry

Both of these words express regret for some problem or something you did wrong. I’m sorry is less formal, and “I apologize” is more formal. There are a few different ways to continue the sentence. You can say: I’m sorry (that) I yelled at you. I’m sorry for yelling at you. I apologize for yelling…

Composed of, not from

Composed of, not from Don’t Say:Our class is composed from thirty students. Say:Our class is composed of thirty students.

Best English Learning Resources Online & Apps

“Know what tools you have to fulfill your purpose.”― Steve Maraboli You are such a lucky English learner, because there are so many wonderful resources online to help speed up your learning today. We’ve already mentioned a few amazing resources. Like Skype and Italki.com for speaking daily with native speakers. Vis-Ed.com, Anki App and Google Images for flashcards….

From for Since

From for Since Don’t Say:Ian’s been ill from last Friday. Say:Ian’s been ill since iast Friday. Note:From can also denote a point in time, but it must be followed by to or till: He works from eight o’clock till one o’clock without a break. Place the preposition since before words or phrases denoting a point…

hope

After I hope, we often use a present tense with a future meaning. I hope she likes (= will like)the flowers. I hope the bus comes soon. In negative sentences, we usually put not with the verb that comes after hope. I hope she doesn’t wake up. We can use I was hoping to introduce…

Towns

Look at this description of Cork, one of Ireland’s main towns. Underline any words or phrases that might be useful for describing your own or any other town. Cork city is the major metropolis of the south; indeed with a population of about 135,000 it is the second largest city in the Republic. The main…

The object of the verb enjoy omitted

The object of the verb enjoy omitted Don’t Say:I enjoyed during the holidays. Say:I enjoyed myself during the holidays. Or: I enjoyed my holidays. Note:We say I had a good time, as this is an idiomatic expression, but we can’t say I enjoyed my time. We must specify. I enjoyed my time in Greece. Don’t…

5 Ways to Interrupt Someone

1. Sorry to interrupt, but…2. Excuse me – could I talk to you for a minute? / do you have a minute? (when interrupting a conversation between two other people, to talk to one of them)3. Could I jump in here? (use this when interrupting a discussion among many people)4. Sorry – I just want…

Distances and dimensions

You probably know all the common words for distances and dimensions. In this unit we shall concentrate on derived words and compounds and other connected words/phrases you may not know or be unsure of how to use accurately. Broad and wide and tall and high Wide is more common than broad, e.g. It’s a very…

classic / classical

The word classical can describe something that is: Influenced by ancient Greek or Roman culture (classical mythology, classical architecture) Related to European traditional music from the 18th-19th centuries (classical music) Related to the established fundamentals of a field of art or study (classical ballet, classical mechanics) – NOT new or experimental The word classic is…

Misuse of There is for There are

Misuse of There is for There are Don’t Say:There is some girls waiting outside. Say:There are some girls waiting outside. Note:There is changes to there are if the noun that follows is the plural.

5 Ways to Say “I don’t know”

1. I have no idea/clue.2. I can’t help you there.3. (informal) Beats me.4. I’m not really sure.5. I’ve been wondering that, too.

Idioms connected with using language

Idioms connected with communication problems Good talk, bad talk The boss always talks down to us. [talks as if we were inferior] My work-mates are always talking behind my back, [saying negative things about me when I’m not there] It was just small talk, nothing more, I promise, [purely social talk, nothing serious] Let’s sit…

Confusing usage words part two

anywhere: in, at, or to any place I think that we can drive anywhere in this county. anywheres: This word does not exist in the English language. as: (conjunction that starts a subordinate clause); (adverb) to the same degree, equally. (As is also a preposition.) Rex is already as tall as his dad. like: (preposition)…

Say to a person, not say a person

Say to a person, not say a person Don’t Say:Kevin said me, Come tomorrow.’ Say:Kevin said to me, ‘Come tomorrow.’

may and might: permission

Asking for permission May and might can be used to ask for permission. They are more formal than can and could. Might is very polite and formal, and is not common. May I put the TV on ? I wonder if I might have a little more cheese? Giving and refusing permission May is used…

Slang

Slang is a particular kind of colloquial language. It refers to words and expressions which are extremely informal. Slang helps to make speech vivid, colourful and interesting but it can easily be used inappropriately. Although slang is mainly used in speech, it is also often found in the popular press. It can be risky for…

defect / fault / flaw

A flaw is a problem or err or (small or large) that makes something less effective or valuable. The word flaw can be used for problems in objects, ideas, or people’s character: Objects: This diamond is less expensive because it contains several flaws. Ideas: There’s a major flaw in your plan – it will never…

Education

Stages in a person’s education Here are some names that are used to describe the different types of education in Britain. Note: Comprehensive schools in the UK are for all abilities, but grammar schools are usually by competitive entry. Public schools in the UK are very famous private schools. Polytechnics are similar to universities, but…

present tenses: simple present

Forms Affirmative Question Negative I work you work he/she/it works we work they work do I work? do you work? does he/she/it work? do we work? do they work? I do not work you do not work he/she/it does not work we do not work they do not work Verbs ending in s, -z, -x,…

for: purpose

We use for before a noun to talk about a purpose, or reason for doing something. We went to the pub for a drink I went to London for an interview. We do not use for before a verb to talk about purpose. I went to the pub to have a drink. (NOT . ….

Tired of + -ing

Tired of + -ing Don’t Say:The customer got tired to wait, Say:The customer got tired of waiting.

Say and Tell

Say and Tell Don’t Say:He told, I will/’ll go home.He told that he’d go home. Say:He said, ‘I will/’ll go home.He said that he’d go home.

10 Ways to Say You Don’t Believe Someone

1. Yeah, right.2. You’re kidding.3. You’re pulling my leg.4. That’s a bit of an exaggeration.5. He’s stretching the truth.6. He’s not telling the whole truth.7. She’s being economical with the truth. (= she’s lying or not telling the entire truth)8. His story is fishy.9. That’s an outright lie.10. That’s a pack of lies.

dinner / supper / meal / snack

The word meal means any time when you eat a large amount of food. There are typically 3 meals per day – breakfast (in the morning), lunch (mid-day), and dinner (at night). A snack is a smaller amount of food (for example, a bag of chips or a piece of fruit) and you can eat…