It is easy to talk about likes and dislikes in English: “I like this” and “I don’t like that” are OK. Sometimes you want to say something a little different and ‘love’ and ‘hate’ are not what you were thinking about.
Here is a guide to using the verbs write, draw, sketch and paint which are commonly confused.
When you move up to the pre-intermediate stage in your learning there are some tricky bits of grammar that are very useful to learn. One of the main pre-intermediate obstacles is the confusion between ‘you have done it’ and ‘you have got it done/you have had it done’.
Here’s how they work.
It is useful to be able to talk about decisions that you or other people have made. It causes difficulty for some people but really it is straightforward. In today’s post I’ll help you talk about decisions.
The patterns are
(SUBJECT) (VERB) (PREPOSITION) (OBJECT)
(SUBJECT) (VERB) (INTERROGATIVE) (INFINITE VERB) [MAYBE A PREPOSITION] [MAYBE OBJECT]
(SUBJECT) (VERB) (INTERROGATIVE) (OBJECT) (‘BE’ VERB) (CONTINUOUS VERB) [MAYBE A PREPOSITION] [MAYBE OBJECT]
(SUBJECT) (VERB) (INFINITIVE VERB) [MAYBE A PREPOSITION] [MAYBE OBJECT]
There are times when your brain tells you that you have to do something that you don’t want to do, and times that your brain says to stop doing something but you feel like that’s impossible. Well, here is some vocabulary to help explain those situations.
In today’s post I’m going to teach you how to discuss risk and danger. It’s useful for business and also for general situations.
Regrets are difficult for students to talk about.
What’s a regret? It’s wishing you could change the past by doing an action you didn’t do or by not doing an action you did do.
You can express regrets by using the verb ‘regret’ in the following way.
- Using a gerund (‘~ing’ verb) and object:
- a negative gerund and an object:
- Using ‘that’ with a simple past-tense verb:
“I regret playing video games instead of studying during high school.”
“I regret not studying in high school.”
“I regret that I played games so much.”
“I regret that I didn’t study.”
Share your regrets in the comments. I regret not studying German after secondary school.
This post has the Business English graphic but really, it’s for anybody who needs to use banks in English.
- open an account
- close an account
- make a withdrawal
- make a deposit
- be in credit
- be overdrawn/go overdrawn
- an overdraft
- take out a loan
- make a transfer
When you want to start using a bank you have to open an account, which is a section of a bank database that says how much money you have available.
When you want to stop using a bank you have to close an account. Easy!
To get your money out of the bank you make a withdrawal.
To put your money into the bank you make a deposit.
If you have money in the bank you are in credit.
If you have taken more money from the bank than you had available you are overdrawn. You can also say you have gone overdrawn.
The bank lets people go overdrawn without any penalty if they set up an overdraft facility.
When you want to borrow money from the bank and pay it back month by month, you take out a loan.
If you want to send money to a different bank account you have to make a transfer. If you want to send money to an account in a different country you need a SWIFT code, which is an international bank number.
Customer: Hello, I’d like to make a withdrawal. I couldn’t get my money out of the cash machine.
Banker: Could I take your bank card, please?
Customer: Here you are.
Banker: Do you have any photo ID?
Customer: Is my driving licence okay?
Banker: Yes, that’s fine. I’m afraid you’ve gone overdrawn by fifteen pounds and seventeen pence.
Customer: Really? That is strange because today is pay day and I should have around one thousand six hundred pounds going into my account. I also need to make a transfer. Could you tell me if my salary has been transferred to my account?
Banker: It appears that it hasn’t. I may be able to set up a temporary agreed overdraft for you while you deal with this problem. Would you like me to set up a five-hundred pound overdraft for you?
Customer: Yes, please. I’d like to transfer two hundred dollars to this account in Thailand, please.
Banker: Do you have the SWIFT code?
Customer: Sorry, I don’t.
Banker: I’m afraid I need the SWIFT code; it’s an international bank ID number.
Customer: Well, I’ll have to find it later from my son. I suppose I should phone work as well. Thank you for your help.
Banker: Thank you.
Sometimes nouns (words for things) are used as verbs (words for actions). They are rather easy to understand although some of them really get on my nerves due to the fact that there are existing verbs that can be used for the same job. I also prefer the sound of the longer expression of the real verb and the noun. However, it is easy to see these examples in books, magazines and newspapers and on television.
noun: a plaything
That car? It’s my new toy!
verb: play with something or someone; manipulate someone
I think you’re toying with that girl. Show her you’re serious or leave her alone.
noun: a piece of metal as a reward for military action or sporting ability
My grandad sold all his World War II medals. What a shame!
verb: to gain first, second or third place in a sporting competition
What a shock result! The Americans have failed to medal, with Kenya gaining gold, Ethiopia silver and Jamaica bronze.
There are also some example of this in communications
noun: a tray for new communications; a directory for new messages in an email program
I have 231 unread messages in my work inbox.
verb: to send an email
If you don’t know how to access the site, inbox me.
noun: a facsimile; a copy of a document sent by digital telephony
I received your fax and I have a few questions.
verb: to send a copy of a document by digital telephony
Can you fax me the latest price list because I can’t open your email attachment.
Last week I showed you some phrasal verbs with ‘pop’. Today I’ll show you some phrasal verbs with ‘drop’.
- Fall asleep
- Take someone to a place, usually by car
I can never fall asleep at night but I have no problem dropping off in college classes.
It takes me an hour before I drop off to sleep at night.
It’s raining. Get in the car and I’ll drop you off at the station.
Drop in/Drop by/Drop round
Visit casually and usually without planning.
I’ll drop by the Student Union to see if anyone wants to play pool.
To quit an activity or a place of education.
We were going to go rafting but Andy and Jane dropped out so there aren’t enough of us, now.
The course is too hard so I’m going to drop out of university.
Drop someone a line
Write to someone.
If you have any news while I’m on holiday, drop me a line at the hotel.
If you have any questions about ‘drop’ verbs, drop me a line in the comments and I’ll drop by later with a reply.