3 Minute English #7 – English Pubs

 Here’s another video that I hope you’ll enjoy. It has accurate subtitles and the narrator speaks with a clear British accent.

 Listening to videos like this is easy English practice. I know that studying a language can be hard work so you need to find a way to enjoy it whenever possible. That’s why I recommend songs and short videos so much. How hard is it to listen to and watch a 3-minute video? If you enjoy this one, have a look at their other videos. As the name suggests, “Vocabulary in Chunks” focuses on teaching groups of English words together. This is the best way to learn new vocabulary. 

 If you don’t understand some of the ‘chunks’, don’t translate single words. Translate the whole chunk and you will get a better explanation. First, try to work out the meanings from the context and the visuals. Enjoy! 

Vocabulary in Chunks

[Loescher Editore Video]

Vocabulary chunks to learn from video :

  • One of the oldest pubs in the UK.
  • Over a thousand years ago
  • The word pub is short for a public house.
  • In other words a house open to everybody to meet
  • Pubs need a license to sell alcoholic drinks
  • To young people under 18
  • UNIT 2
  • Full of ornaments and curios objects.
  • Pubs, sell wine, soft drinks and naturally different types of beer
  • The beer is served in half pints or pints
  • An ideal place to relax and chat
  • Whether you stand or sit at a table and read
  • Traditional British dishes such as fish and chips

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Posted in IELTS, Intermediate (Level 4), Listening, Pre-Intermediate (Level 3), Upper Intermediate (Level 5), Videos, Vocabulary | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Russell Crowe Teaches You Australian & New Zealand Slang – Vanity Fair

Russell Crowe recently made a video for Vanity Fair explaining Australian & New Zealand Slang. I thought that you might enjoy it. I do not recommend the subtitles. They are misleading!

Posted in Advanced (Level 6+), Intermediate (Level 4), Speaking & Pronunciation, Upper Intermediate (Level 5), Vocabulary | Tagged , | Leave a comment

How to Write an Opinion Essay

https://unsplash.com/photos/y-mB90P-6DY

♦ Opinion & Fact:

It is essential when writing an opinion essay to clearly separate opinion and fact

When teaching essay writing and critical reading skills to students (adults),  I have often been dismayed to discover that they accept written opinions as facts. Alas, such is the power of the written word! 

What’s real? What is your interpretation?

How can we develop informed opinions if we unthinkingly accept the opinions of others as facts? Present the same facts on a particular issue to ten people and you could end up with ten different opinions which can be influenced by personal experience, interpretation, and understanding of the issues to name just a few. What happens to the facts? What’s real? Do we just listen to the loudest, most opinionated voices?

When you write an opinion essay, it is necessary to state your opinion/s very clearly. Everyone should have the freedom to state his or her opinion, however disagreeable it may be to others. An opinion is neither right nor wrong. A fact can be checked for accuracy and truth.

Importantly, you need to support your opinions with facts and examples, otherwise why should anyone accept what you say? How can you expect a top exam result if your essay is unconvincing?

♦ Essay Structure:

◊ Introduction
What is your topic and what is your opinion? State them clearly in the first paragraph. Use everyday language but not slang. 

19th-century author Oscar Wilde

◊ Main Body of the Essay
You need to use facts and examples to support your opinion. The length of the main body depends on why you are writing. If you are writing for an exam, your time and word count will be limited and perhaps one or two paragraphs will be sufficient. If you are a journalist, this section could be several paragraphs.

Make sure that the reader can follow your ideas and examples easily. Sequence your facts logically. Chronological sequence is often the simplest. You may prefer numerical order.

Do not introduce irrelevant information. Use facts and examples that are directly related to your ideas in the introduction. 

◊ Conclusion
This is a repetition of the ideas in your introduction, using different words of course! This final paragraph lets the reader know that you have finished and acts as a summary of your ideas.

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I recommend that you read an excellent example of an opinion piece which I have included below. It was written by Jacinta Price, Councillor for Alice Springs (Northern Territory, Australia) on Facebook a few days ago, a wonderful example of evidence-based writing.

Note that Jacinta Price:
◊ states her feelings plainly and strongly in the first paragraph
◊ provides a wealth of facts and examples to support her opinions, and
◊ in conclusion, reinforces the views outlined in the introduction.

Jacinta Nampijinpa Price

June 11 at 11:00 PM

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Posted in Advanced (Level 6+), Cambridge, IELTS, Intermediate (Level 4), Reading, Upper Intermediate (Level 5), Writing | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Bilingual and Even Multilingual Does Not Always Equate to Professional Translation or Proofreading Services

https://unsplash.com/photos/MK4QKBqG_lA– A Guest Post by  Ofer Tirosh 

The new business is up and running, the website is up and running, and now it is time to expand and move into a more diverse market with a larger potential customer base. Should you find a professional translation company to hire certified and professional proofreaders or is someone who grew up in a bilingual or multilingual environment going to be sufficient to meet all of your translation and proofreading requirements? It may even be possible that you yourself would like to learn how to become a proofreader.

The new shop is finally open, and the neighborhood you have invested in has a large Hispanic population. This is a very common occurrence as Spanish is prevalent in many parts of the United States and is one of the most common languages globally. Advertising and marketing materials need to be adjusted accordingly so you want to find someone to translate into Spanish, all of the requisite materials. That kid from Spain working in the store can probably do all that right?

That new financial business is finally up and running online, advertising heavily in the Hong Kong markets, and that programmer from China speaks Chinese right? What could it possibly hurt to have friends, neighbors or others whose “extensive qualifications” extend no further than having grown up in a bilingual household, to provide cheap translating and proofreading services?

Some people will not trust translators with no work experience to translate such documents. Oddly however, these are also the people who will sometimes use basic machine translations and hire these unqualified translators and proofreaders to proofread all of the document translations. What could possibly go wrong? Besides everything?

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Posted in Advanced (Level 6+), Upper Intermediate (Level 5) | 1 Comment

English Classes Online

In my last post,  I recommended my colleague Leonie Bywater https://www.facebook.com/ProficiencyExamExpert for those of you who were enquiring about learning English online, particularly for learners wanting private lessons and /or tutoring for English exams.

For Elementary and Pre-intermediate level students who are interested in being part of an Online English Class,  I’m excited to announce that the school at which I teach, Langports International English College, will be starting a New Online Course – Survival English next month. Check out the flyer below and click on the links for more information.

Click to access langports-online-courses-1.pdf

Posted in Elementary (Level 2), Pre-Intermediate (Level 3), Speaking & Pronunciation | 1 Comment

Online English Lessons

Hello Everyone! I’ve received enquiries recently about online lessons. Evidently, many of you have decided to pursue online lessons while you are spending more time at home.

Leonie Bywater

Online interactive lessons suit many language learners and if this style of learning suits you, you will benefit a great deal. 

Alas, I cannot provide online lessons at the moment as I am working full-time at my school teaching, you guessed it – English online!

However, I can highly recommend Leonie Bywater, a colleague of mine. I worked with Leonie for over ten years. She is a fantastic English teacher and her students love her. She is highly qualified and experienced at teaching all levels from Elementary to TOEIC and IELTS to Cambridge.  You can contact Leonie on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ProficiencyExamExpert or by email: leonie_b57@hotmail.com 


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Posted in Advanced (Level 6+), Cambridge, Grammar, IELTS, Intermediate (Level 4), Pre-Intermediate (Level 3), TOEIC, Upper Intermediate (Level 5), Writing | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Keep Fit in Isolation & Improve your English!

Dua Lipa has a new song called PHYSICAL and she has made a Let’s Get Physical Work Out Video which is the perfect workout class for all of you who are stuck at home feeling bored. While you watch and follow the instructions, your English will improve. Here’s a challenge for you:

How long will it take you to sing along with Dua Lipa while doing the workout? One week? One month?

Click on the picture below to watch the YouTube video (and start your new fitness class!) The lyrics are listed under the video,

LYRICS:

Physical by Dua Lipa

Common love isn’t for us.
We created something phenomenal.
Don’t you agree?
Don’t you agree?
You got me feeling diamond rich.
Nothing on this planet compares to it.
Don’t you agree?
Don’t you agree?

Who needs to go to sleep, when I got you next to me?

Chorus
All night, I’ll riot with you.

I know you got my back and you know I got you.
So come on, come on, come on.
Let’s get physical.
Lights out and follow the noise.
Baby keep on dancing like you *ain’t got a choice. (*ain’t = don’t have)
So come on, come on, come on.
Let’s get physical.

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Posted in Dua Lipa, Intermediate (Level 4), Listening, Pre-Intermediate (Level 3), Songs, Upper Intermediate (Level 5), Videos | Tagged | 1 Comment

Artist Niki Daly talks about IMAGINATION

I have found a heart-warming video to cheer you up in these uncertain times. It features artist Niki Daly who says inspiring things like, ‘Children have an imagination that transforms the ordinary into the extraordinary’. 

The video is a short film produced by Green Renaissance. Who is Green Renaissance? “We are a tiny collective of 4 passionate filmmakers (Warren, Jacky, Michael and Justine). We live off-grid and dedicate our time to making films that we hope will inspire and share ideas.”

The subtitles provide excellent English.

         

Posted in Advanced (Level 6+), Intermediate (Level 4), Listening, Speaking & Pronunciation, Upper Intermediate (Level 5), Videos | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

English Words that are often Confused #4

First, read English Words that are often Confused #1, #2, & #3.

Today, I’m continuing with English Words that are often Confused: words starting with ‘E’. If you would like to receive all my future posts explaining confusing words, just click on ‘Follow’.

Confused?

Let’s have a look at some confusing words:

a) edible, eatable
     b) effect, affect
c) eminent, imminent
     d) endure, tolerate
e) enormity,  enormous
     f) especially, specially
 

♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

 

a) edible, eatable

♦ edible – adjective

♦ eatable – adjective

 Avocado are edible and this one will remain eatable for perhaps two more days.

I always thought that avocados were vegetables.  In Australia, they are served in salads, on toast, with seafood, and in dips like guacamole. I was surprised to hear my Brazilian students call them fruit! They eat them as a sweet and in drinks. They concluded that Australians were strange!

We all agree that avocados are edible: they can normally be eaten. (The stone in the centre is not edible. It is inedible.) However, that now decaying avocado you put in the fridge a month ago is not eatable! ‘Eatable’ refers to the condition of food.

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Posted in Intermediate (Level 4), Pre-Intermediate (Level 3), Upper Intermediate (Level 5), Vocabulary | 1 Comment

Conversations with Aussies # 1

I talk with Christopher and Rachel about living at Bondi Beach, Australia.

Tapescript:

How long have you lived in Bondi?

Rachel – I’ve lived here for about two years,

Christopher – And I’ve been here for five years, in a few different spots.

And what do you enjoy about living in Bondi?

R – I just feel like the relaxing lifestyle … so, get to go for a swim at the beach after work and we get to enjoy the beach on the weekends.

C – And we also like going out for food and drinks. There’s plenty of places within walking distance for all that.

R – And it’s really nice to be able to look out your window and see some whales and dolphins in the water. We’ve got a pair of binoculars and we get to have a close-up look at these animals in the water.

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Posted in Intermediate (Level 4), Listening, Pre-Intermediate (Level 3), Videos | Tagged , | Leave a comment