Posted in Conversation Classes, Grammar Classes

A little bit of drama: Reported speech – reporting verb patterns

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This is a lesson plan for higher levels (B2+) to teach verb patterns with reporting verbs using video and scripted roleplays. It will be especially useful for CAE students as these structures tend to come up in key word transformations quite often.

You will need:

Explanation of the 4 groups of reporting verbs:

reporting-verbs1

Credit to http://www.eltbase.com/notes.php?id=59 for their great explanation.

The scripted scenarios (print out at least 3 copies):

reported-speech-script

The key to the scenarios:

Reported Speech Script Key

Introduction:

Write the verbs “accuse” and “deny” on the board. Then play the first minute of the following video:

Elicit the following sentences from students:

The Dad asked the boys who had got the paint out.

The older brother accused the younger brother of gettting/having got the paint out.

The younger brother denied getting/having got the paint out.

The older brother accused the younger brother of building stairs out of blocks.

Analyse the sentences and come up with the formula for the verbs accuse and deny:

accuse somebody of doing/having done something

deny doing/having done something

Ask students if they have ever been in a similar situation with a sibling or friend.

Have you ever been wrongfully accused of doing something?

Stage 2: 4 groups of reporting verbs

For this part you can either give out the handout on the 4 groups of reporting verb patterns. Or model the sentences on the board and have students dedicate a page in their vocab books for each group of verbs.

You’re going to need a lot of space on the board for this part. Divide the board into 4 quarters.

Write the following sentence, one at the top of each quarter:

  1. I’ll come to the party. (say)
  2. I’ll come to the party. (tell)
  3. I will definitely help with the cleaning. (promise)
  4. I didn’t steal the money. (deny)

Tell students to change the sentences to reported speech using the verb in brackets:

  1. He said that he would come to the party.
  2. He told me that he would come to the party.
  3. He promised to help with the cleaning.
  4. He denied stealing the money.

Tell students that these are the 4 groups of reporting verbs.

Group 1: Say pattern: Same as “say”

 He said that he would come to the party.

Subject + reporting verb + (that) + clause

Common verbs of this type:

admit
advise*
agree
announce
claim
complainconfess*
confirm
declare
explain
insist*
mention
promise*
propose*
say
suggest
warn*demand

* also used with other patterns – see below

Group 2: Tell pattern: Same as “tell”

He told me that he would come to the party.

Subject + reporting verb + direct object + (that) + clause.

Common verbs of this type:

advise
assure
convince
inform
notify
promise
reassure
remind
tell
warn

Group 3: Reporting actions: Promises requests etc.

 He promised to help with the cleaning.

Subject + reporting verb + infinitive with to

Common verbs of this type:

agree
ask
claim
demand
offer
promise
propose
refuse
threatentell (imperative)

He encouraged me to take maths instead of history.

Subject  + reporting verb + DO + infinitive with to

Common verbs of this type

advise
ask
beg
convince
encourage
forbid
instruct
invite
order
persuade
remind
tell
urge
warn (not to)

Group 4: Reporting verbs with gerund.

He denied stealing the money.

Subject + reporting verb + gerund

 Common verbs of this type:

admit
deny
mention
propose
report
suggest

 

Verbs with prepositions and gerund:

 

Accuse sb of doing st

Confess to doing something

Apologise to sb about/for doing st

Blame sb for st

Complain to sb about st

Insist on doing st

Object to st/doing st

Advise ab against doing st

Stage 3: Controlled Practice

Have students complete the 10 sentences on the back of the handout.

Report the sentence using the verb in brackets

  1. I want to see the manager! (demanded)

_________________________________________

  1. Don’t leave the path, there are dangerous snakes. (warned)

_________________________________________

  1. I will help you clean up after the party (promised)

_________________________________________

  1. Don’t forget to feed the fish. (Reminded)

_________________________________________

  1. No no no! I’m paying for dinner. (Insisted)

_________________________________________

  1. Listen everyone! I’m moving to New York next week. (announced)

_________________________________________

  1. You are not allowed to chew gum in class. (forbid)

_________________________________________

  1. I will punch you if you call me that again. (threatened)

_________________________________________

  1. I’m really sorry that I broke your favourite cup. (apologised)

_________________________________________

  1. Stand up and put your hands on your head. (ordered)

________________________________________

Key

  1. He demanded to see the manager. He demanded that he saw the manager.
  2. She warned us not to leave the path. She warned (us) that there were dangerous snakes.
  3. She promised to help clean up after the party. She promised (me) that she would help clean up.
  4. He reminded me to feed the fish.
  5. She insisted on paying for dinner. She insisted that she paid for dinner.
  6. He announced that he was moving to New York the following week.
  7. She forbid me to chew gum in class.
  8. He threatened to punch me in the face if I called him that again.
  9. She apologised for breaking my favourite cup.
  10. He ordered me to stand up and put my hands on my head.

Stage 4: Scripted role-play

Split the class into groups of 2-3 and give out the role-play scenarios, give them a couple of minutes to read and rehearse and then have students come to the front of the class and act out the scenarios. Then the other groups have to write sentences using as many reporting verb patterns as they can based on what happened in the scenarios. Guide students and model sentences, encourage them to place them in the correct group.

Reported speech – Scripts

Scenario 1

A: Hi son, How’s it going?

B: Hi Dad. I’m going out.

A: Wait a minute, wait a minute. Have you done your homework?

B: Ahhh come on Dad, it’s Friday night.

A: I don’t care, have you done it or not?

B: No. But I promise I’ll do it tomorrow.

A: Ok, but if you don’t you’ll be grounded for a week.

B: Ok it’s a deal.

They shake hands.

Scenario 2

Sarah: Hi Fiona, how’s it going? Are you coming to the party tonight?

Fiona: No I don’t think so; I’m not in the mood and I have to work tomorrow.

Sarah: No you don’t! Tomorrow is a holiday, the shop is closed.

Fiona: Oh yeah! I’d completely forgotten. I’m still not sure.

Sarah: Oh come on, you’ve got to come! Tommy’s going to be there.

Fiona: Really? Hhhhmmmm well, ok go on then, I’ll come.

Scenario 3

Teacher: (to John) You stole €5 from the charity collection box!

John: Me??? It wasn’t me! How dare you accuse me! It was Sandra who stole the money. I saw her do it!

Sarah: Me? No way! He’s lying!

Teacher: I want to see what’s in your pockets right now!

They turn out their pockets. John’s pockets are full of money.

Teacher: Aha! What’s all this?

John: Ok, it was me. I admit it.

Sarah: I think it’s unfair that I was accused of this crime. I’m going to tell my parents.

Teacher: I’m terribly sorry Sarah, it was a misunderstanding.

Scenario 4

Anna and Natalie are having a party. The music is very loud. There is a knock at the door.

Anna: (opening the door) Yes? Who is it? What do you want?

Little old lady: It’s 3am, I can’t sleep please turn the music down.

Natalie: Turn it down? No way! We just graduated!

Little old lady:  Oh please please please turn it down, I’m so tired.

Anna: Nope sorry, we’re not going to turn it down.

Little old lady: (angry) Well, if you don’t turn it down I’m going to call the police.

Natalie: Go ahead! You can come in and use my phone if you want.

Little old lady: oooo the cheek of it! That’s it! I’m going to call the police!

Reported Speech Script Key

Scenario 1

The Dad asked the son if he had done his homework.

The son admitted that he hadn’t done his homework.

The son admitted to not doing/having done his homework.

The son promised to do his homework the day after.

The Dad warned the son that if he didn’t do his homework he would be grounded for a week.

Scenario 2

Sarah asked Fiona if she was going to the party tonight.

Fiona replied that she didn’t think so. She said that she wasn’t in the mood and that she had to work the day after.

Sarah reminded Fiona that the day after was a holiday.

Sarah persuaded/convinced Fiona to come to the party by telling her Tommy would be there.

Scenario 3

The teacher accused John of stealing/having stolen the money.

John denied stealing the money and accused Sarah of stealing the money.

The teacher ordered them to turn out their pockets/demanded that they turned out their pockets.

John admitted to/confessed to stealing the money.

Sarah objected to being accused of stealing the money.

The teacher apologised for accusing Sarah of stealing the money.

Scenario 4

Anna asked who it was and what they wanted.

The old lady asked/urged them to turn the music down.

Natalie refused to turn the music down.

The old lady begged them to turn the music down.

Anna refused to turn the music down.

The little old lady threatened to call the police if they didn’t turn the music down.

Anna invited the old lady to use her phone.

The old lady announced that she was going to call the police.

Stage 4: Follow up activity, students write their own scripts.

Students come up with their own scenarios trying to use as many of the different verb patterns as possible. Other groups have to correctly guess the verb they were trying to express.

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Posted in Grammar Classes

Too/Enough

 

Before you use these materials, why no check out our new podcast for learners and teachers alike? It’s called 2Ts in a Pod, have a listen here:

This is an activity to practice “too and enough” through a gap fill and then a discussion based on pictures.

You will need the following handouts:

Story, grammar explanation and gap-fill:

Too Enough

Pictures for discussion:

Too enough pics

Part 1: Warmer Discussion

Write on the board:

“Footballers earn too much money.”

“Teachers don’t earn enough money.”

Have students discuss the two sentences.

Part 2: Listening to a story

Read the following story to students,tell them to write down any uses of too and enough that they hear.

Beach story:

The other day I went to the beach with my family. It was a scorching day, I asked my friend to come but he said it was too hot to go to the beach. We got in the car and drove to the beach. The beach was very crowded.

“Oh no! There are too many people here!” said my Mum.

“Don’t worry, there’s enough space for everyone.” said my Dad.

We unpacked the car and walked down to the beach. We put our towels down and my sister and I decided to go for a swim. We ran to the water and jumped in.

“Brrrrr!” said my sister. “It’s too cold for me!” and she ran back to my Mum and Dad. I continued swimming for a few minutes when suddenly I saw people windsurfing and there was a shop renting windsurfing boards, it looked so much fun. I ran back to my parents and asked them if I could try it.

“I’m not sure.” said my Mum. “Do you think he’s old enough?” she asked my Dad.

“I think he’s old enough, but is he strong enough? I think the sail will be too heavy for you son.”

“Please please please Dad!” I begged.

“Ok, let’s go and see how much it costs.” So we walked down to shop. It cost €20 to rent the board for the whole day.

“Buff!” said my Dad. “I think that’s too expensive, I don’t have enough money to pay that much.” So Dad negotiated and in the end we paid €15 for the day. We took the board out into the water and I tried to lift the sail but it was too heavy.

“Come on son! You’re not trying hard enough!” said my Dad. So I took the sail with both hands and made a big effort. I didn’t want my dad to think I wasn’t strong enough to lift it. The sail came out of the water and the board started moving across the water it was the most amazing feeling! We spent the whole day windsurfing, it was one of the best days of my life.

Part 3: Guided Discovery

Tell students to dictate all of the examples back to you, but them on the board and use them to do a guided discovery of the rules outlined in the handout.

Too and enough indicate degree. They are used with adjectives.

  • Too means more than what is needed.
  • Enough means sufficient.

Examples

He is too old to play football with the kids.
Dave is intelligent enough to do the right thing.
You’re not working fast enough
I don’t have enough time.
He has too many friends.
Footballers earn too much money.

Use of too and enough

1.Enough precedes adjectives and adverbs:

He isn’t old enough to watch this program.
We’re not walking quickly  enough.

2.Enough may also precede  nouns:

We have enough money 
I haven’t got enough money to buy this computer.

3.Too comes before adjectives and adverbs:

It’s too hot to wear that coat.
I was driving too fast.

  1. Too may also come before nouns when it is used with the expressions too much and too many.
  2. Too much is used before uncountable nouns.

There is too much salt in this food.

  1. Too many is used before countable nouns

There are too many students in this classroom.

Part 4: Gap fill

Have students complete the gap-fill at the bottom of the handout.

Fill in the correct word (too or enough).

  1. I left the coffee for a minute to cool because it was                                  hot to drink.
  2. He wasn’t strong                                   to lift that heavy box.
  3. There aren’t                                   policemen in our town.
  4. Do you have                                   information to help me with this problem?
  5. It is                                   difficult  for a little child to do.
  6. I do not have                                   time to prepare dinner.
  7. I didn’t buy the car because it was                                   expensive.
  8. He didn’t work hard                                   to pass the exam.
  9. My mum can’t sleep because she drinks                                   much coffee.
  10. She isn’t old                                   to start driving.

Key: 1-too, 2-enough, 3-enough, 4-enough, 5-too, 6-enough, 7-too, 8-enough, 9-too, 10-enough.

Part 5: Picture Discussion (Free production) 

Show the pictures in the hand out and have students make as many sentences as possible using the structures. Ask some questions to prompt. Do you think there are too many tourists in the city?

Gap fill credit:

http://www.myenglishpages.com/site_php_files/grammar-exercise-too-enough.php#.VPWZHfnF8k0

Grammar explanation credit:

English grammar – Too & enough

Posted in Conversation Classes, Grammar Classes

The Perfect Date – So/Neither do I

This is an activity to practice short answers of agreement “So/neither do I”

Download the handout here:

so neither do I

Introduction

We use the short answers “So do I/Neither do I” to express agreement or something in common that we have with another person.

We use “So do I” to respond to positive sentences and “Neither do I” for negative sentences.

A: I love Spanish wine. B: So do I!

A: I don’t like fast food. B: Neither do I.

Auxiliary Verbs

The auxiliary verb we use depends on the sentence we are responding to.

Present Simple: DO

A: I love Spanish wine. B: So do I!

A: I don’t like fast food. B: Neither do I.

Past Simple: DID

A: I went to the cinema last weekend. B: So did I.

A: I didn’t like the film though. B: Neither did I.

Or if another auxiliary verb is present we repeat it.

A: I can run the hundred metres in under 11 seconds. B: So ______ I.

A: I wouldn’t like to go there at night. B: ________ _________ __________.

Write the short answer responses in the first person for the following sentences:

  1. I’ve always wanted to visit Hong Kong. __________________________
  2. I’m not a big fan of basketball. _______________________
  3. I’d quite like to try to scuba diving. ___________________
  4. I shouldn’t smoke so much. _____________________
  5. I work in a bank. ______________________
  6. I can’t stand karaoke. _________________
  7. I had seen the film 3 times before. ____________________
  8. I couldn’t believe my eyes! _________________________

We can also use this structure with a possessive pronoun (mine/his/hers etc.)

A: My husband works in finance. B: So does mine.

A: My children go to St. Peter’s school. B: So do mine.

Role-play the perfect date

You go on date with someone you met on tinder. First, complete the following sentences about yourself, and then read them to your date. You discover that you are a match made in heaven!

Student 1:

I’ve always dreamed of_____________________

I’m crazy about_______________________

I can’t bear____________________________

I’m petrified of ___________________________

I will never forget___________________________

I really should _____________________________

Tomorrow I have to_________________________

When I was I child I used to_______________________

When I was little I couldn’t________________________

I’ve been ______ing ________________ for___________________.

My ex was a_______________________

My sister ________________________________

Student 2:

I will always remember________________________

If I wasn’t so ___________________, I would_________________

I must remember to_______________________

I can’t_____________________________

My grandparents__________________________

I should_____________________________

I’d love to________________________

When I was a student I used to_________________________

If I could go back in time, I would______________________

Before last week I had never___________________________

I couldn’t live without ___________________________

I’m a huge fan of__________________________

Disagreeing – A date from hell

If we disagree or don’t share the same taste or opinion as the person we can talk to we can simply repeat the auxiliary verb in affirmative/negative:

A: I love Woody Allen films. B: I don’t.

A: I wouldn’t like to try sky-diving. B: I would. – Repeat the date role play but disagree with everything!

Key 1st exercise:

  1. So have I
  2. Neither am I
  3. So would I
  4. Neither should I
  5. So do I
  6. Neither can I
  7. So had I
  8. Neither could I

Photo rights: http://adoniszone.blogspot.com.es/2014/11/5-ways-to-make-your-date-perfect.html

Posted in Conversation Classes, Grammar Classes

Requests and Offers – Shall/could/can etc.

This is an activity to practice various ways of making offers and requests.

First go over the language on the handout for making offers and requests then cut up the situation cards and have students role-play them, simple as that. Here are the handouts:

Offers and Requests Situations

Making Offers and Requests language

Making Offers and Requests

It is common that English speakers make offers in conversations in order to be polite and helpful. When they do so they use these expressions:

Can I… ?
Shall I… ?
Would you like … ?
How about …?

English learner must be able to make offers as well as accept or reject them. The following are useful expressions to do so.

Can I help you?
Shall get you some juice?
Would you like a glass of water ?
How about some pizza?

 

Examples:

·         “Can I help you?”

·         “Shall I open the window for you?”

·         “Would you like another cup of coffee?”

·         “Would you like me to clean the board?”

·         “How about a juice? “

Remember:

·         Shall, can and will are followed by the verb without to.
Example:
“Can I help you?”
“Shall I bring you the mobile phone?

·         Shall is more formal than can.

·         Would you like… is followed either by a noun, or by the verb with to.
Example:
“Would you like some tea ?”
“Would you like to drink some coffee?

 

 

 

 

Responding to offers

Accepting Declining
Yes please. I’d like to.
That would be very kind of you.
Yes please, that would be lovely.
Yes please, I’d love to.
If you wouldn’t mind.
If you could.
Thank you, that would be great.
It’s OK, I can do it myself.
Don’t worry, I’ll do it.
No, thanks
No, thank you

Examples:

·         “Can I help you?”
No thanks, I’m just having a look.” (With a shop assistant.)

·         “Can I help you?”
“Do you know where the post office is.”

·         “Shall I help you with your maths problem?”
“Yes, please. That would be very nice of you.”

·         “Would you like a cup of tea?”
No thanks.” Or, “No thank you.”

·         “Would you like another piece of cake?”
Yes please, that would be nice .”
Yes please, I’d love one.”

·         “Would you like me to do the the ironing for you?”
If you wouldn’t mind.”
If you could.”

·         “I’ll do the washing, if you like.”
It’s OK, I can do it.”
Don’t worry, I’ll do it.
Thank you, that would be great.”

Asking others to do things – making requests

Asking Saying Yes Saying No
Can you…? Yes, sure. Well, I’m afraid + reason
Could you…?
Is it all right if you…?
Do you think you could…?
Will you…?
Would you…?
Yes, of course.
Certainly.
Well, the problem is
Sorry, but…
Do you mind -ing…?
Would you mind -ing…?
No, not at all.
Of course not.

Situation cards:

Offers and Requests Situations

You have just broken your leg. You have to stay in bed for 2 months. You have 3 children and 2 dogs. Ask your friends for help. You have to go away for the weekend for a business trip. You have lots of plants in your house and 3 cats. Your house is in a bad state: the walls need painting, one window is broken and the front door doesn’t close properly. You have no money for repairs. Ask your friends for help.
You have an important job interview tomorrow morning but your car is at the mechanics being fixed. You also need to take your children to school at the same time as the interview. You are organising a cocktail dinner party but you can’t cook or make cocktails and you don’t have any CDs or records to play. You had a big party last night and your house is a complete mess, the carpet is stained with red wine, all the dishes are dirty, there are cans and bottles everywhere and the toilet is broken. Ask your friends (who were also at the party) for help.
You are a little old lady. You have just been to the supermarket, you are carrying a lot of heavy bags and you want to cross the road. Ask a group of teenagers for help. You are in an expensive restaurant with friends. There is a group of loud football players at the table next to you singing and shouting. The restaurant is also too cold and smells bad. Ask the waiter for help. You had an accident at work and you have to wear two patches over your eyes for 2 weeks. Ask your friends for help with your daily activities.
You are moving house. You have to transport everything in your old house to your new one. You don’t have a van, ask your friends for help. You have a new boss at work. You want to impress him/her because you want a promotion. Offer to do some extra work. You are an old man, you have come to visit your children, you have arthritis and you need help with lots of things.

Credits for the language explanations to:

http://www.ecenglish.com/learnenglish/lessons/polite-requests

and

http://www.myenglishpages.com/site_php_files/communication-lesson-offers.php#.VOM_5vnF8k1

and the photo:

https://www.guidedogs.org.uk/microsites/guide-dogs-in-school/puppy-resources/guide-dogs-in-the-community/sighted-guiding/

Posted in Conversation Classes, Grammar Classes, Vocabulary Classes

Conversation Lesson: Agony Aunts

This is a conversation class based on the topic of agony aunts for advanced adult students (C1+) in which students learn some expressions and structures for giving advice. Here is the language handout and the situations for advice:

Agony Aunt + Agony Aunt Language

Start by trying to elicit what an agony aunt is. You could show the this link to the Sun’s Dear Deidre column (be warn it has some partial nudity)

Ask students if they have similar columns/websites in their country.

Tell students that they are going to become agony aunts for the class.

Give out the handout and go through the language Then cut up the agony aunt situations and have students take it in turns to read a situation as if it were their own. Other students then give advice on the situation.

Giving advice

Present:

You should/shouldn’t…

You ought to/ought not to…

You had better/had better not…

If I were in your shoes/position, I would…

I’ll tell you what, why don’t you…?

What you can do is…

I suggest/recommend that you + infinitive – to

I suggest/recommend + gerund

Have you tried + gerund?

It’s vital that you…

You simply have to…

Past:

You should/shouldn’t have + past participle.

You ought (not) to have + past participle.

Expressions

Woah! That’s a tough one.

That’s a delicate/tricky situation.

A minefield.

You have to tread carefully.

Be subtle/tactful/diplomatic.

Bring it up casually.

Who is in the wrong?

Don’t think twice about + gerund (definitely do it)

Don’t even think about + gerund (definitely don’t do it)

Put your foot down.

Don’t take any crap/bullshit.

You have to nip this problem in the bud.

I think you’re making a mountain out of a molehill.

It’s just a storm in a teacup.

It’ll blow over.

Don’t make any hasty/rash decisions.

You have to face the problem head on.

Put yourself in his/her shoes.

What would you do if the shoe was on the other foot?

Don’t put up with it.

Stay strong.

Go with your gut instinct.

Agony Aunt – Situations

My partner has to go away on a business trip with his/her ex, they will be staying in the same hotel. He/she has assured me that /he/she has no feelings for the ex. My partner’s personal hygiene standards have slipped. My partner’s parents are always dropping hints about wedding bells and the pitter patter of tiny feet.
My best friend always flirts with my partner, I don’t want to make a big deal of it but it bothers me. My partner called out the wrong name during sex! My partner used to be really romantic but has stopped making the effort.
My partner told me he/she didn’t want anything for valentine’s day so I didn’t get him/her anything. He/she is now giving me the silent treatment. I’ve been with my partner for 5 months; I have to move out of my house because my landlord is selling it. My partner has invited me to move in with him/her but I’m not sure. Is it too soon? I don’t want to hurt his/her feelings. My partner doesn’t want to have kids and I’ve always said the same but now I’m starting to get broody.
My partner doesn’t help out around the house. He/she doesn’t cook, clean or help fix anything. I lent my partner €1000 and he/she hasn’t paid me back yet and he/she hasn’t brought it up for months. I get the feeling that my partner’s parents don’t approve of my line of work. I’m a professional musician. My partner used to go out with a lawyer.
My partner is still on good terms with all of his/her exes; he/she chats with them regularly on facebook. My best friend told me that my partner came on to him/her when he/she was really drunk. My partner’s mother won’t leave him/her alone. She insists on doing all his/her laundry and that they go out together, just the two of them, every Friday night. How do I make her back off?
I’ve fallen in love with my best friend but he/she isn’t interested. I’m 19 years old and my partner has just proposed to me. I love him/her but is this too big a step? I’m getting married in 2 weeks but I think my fiancé is getting cold feet about wedding. He/she goes really quiet when I start talking about it and he/she doesn’t seem to be sleeping much.
I’m single, I kissed a colleague at the work Christmas party and now he/she has asked me out on a date. My boss at work keeps giving me the eye and dropping hints about us going on a date. He’s invited me to a conference next weekend. I’ve just come out of a long-term relationship. I met a great guy/girl in a bar the other day. I told him/her that it was just a bit of fun but I think he/she is falling for me.
Posted in Exam Preparation Class, Grammar Classes, Vocabulary Classes

CAE use of English useful language

This is a handout for CAE exam students. It contains a selection of the collocations, expressions, phrasal verbs and grammatical structures that can come up in the exam.

Download the hand out here:

CAE expressions collocations etc

Phrasal Verbs

Carry out (do/perform) tests/experiments/studies/orders.

End up – We ended up sleeping in a doorway.

Run out (none left) – We’ve run out of milk.

Run short/low on (not have much left) – we’re running short on milk.

Lead to (cause) – The accident led to huge traffic jams on the main road.

Meet up with (people) – We always meet up at the same café on Sunday afternoon.

Take up space/time – We threw our old sofa out because it took up too much space. I can’t do yoga anymore; it takes up too much of my time.

Stand out (be obviously different) – Alan is 185cm at 14 so he really stands out in his class.

Take after (a parent) (inherit their traits/characteristics) – Neil really takes after his Dad, their mannerisms are exactly the same.

Call for (require) – This job calls for a good head for numbers.

Meet with (encounter) problems/reactions – Joe’s plans for the company met with angry reactions from the employees.

To wear out (to be damaged with use/tired) – The two kids wear me out so much at the weekend. My tires are completely worn out; I need to buy new ones.

Put in (effort/time) – I put a lot of time and effort into the project.

Cut down on (consume less) – I’m going to cut down on cigarettes.

Collocations

A head for figures/numbers (talent)

On an annual/daily basis (every year/day)

An error of judgement

Loose clothes, a loose tooth, the animals got loose (escaped)

Run a business (manage)

A spot of rain, a spot for a picnic, To spot something (see)

Put something to use

Make use of something

Have a vast impact on st

A fall/drop/rise in the number of…

River bank

Sea shore

Clearly distinguishable

Come to light

Animal behaviour

Herds of dinosaurs/cows

Operate machinery

Operate on a person

Raw materials

Disposal of waste/waste disposal

The state of the environment

A pressing problem

Confront/face a problem/be confronted/faced with a problem

Life support systems

Set fire to st

A risk of fire

It soon became clear

Keep an area clear

Short space of time

parking space

release a film/CD/album

Release fumes into the atmosphere

A great deal of + uncountable noun (a lot of)

Snow-capped mountains

A point of interest

Pursue a hobby/leisure activity

A small/large sum of money

Expressions

A metre/day/etc. or so (approx.)

I think of him as a father figure

As much (noun) as possible

Upside-down

Back-to-front

Inside-out

Run into trouble (encounter problems)

Take somebody on a tour

… will be followed by…

It follows that (therefore/so)

Even the (superlative) bravest person would be scared.

Contrary to popular belief…

Behind/ahead of schedule

What do you make of this? (think about)

To make (quite) a name for oneself

I’d be grateful if you could…

This belongs to me

… is nowhere near…

… isn’t anywhere near…

… proved to be… (turned out)

Well over + number (there were well over 100 people at the event)

…is/are considered to be

… would make an excellent/terrible… (doctor/parent etc.)

It’s hard to believe that…

Prevent something from happening

At the height of his fame/success

In (his/its etc.) heyday

At its height (the height of its success/fame)

Common Key Word Transformation Expressions and Grammar

Would rather (not) do something (no to)

Would prefer (not) to do something

Deny + gerund – She denied having stolen/stealing the money

Accuse sb of + gerund

Spend time doing st

It took me (10 mins) to do ….

In spite of/Despite never having done st….

In spite of/Despite + noun

Get something done – I need to get my passport renewed

Were to + inf in conditionals. If I were to win the lottery, I would…

In the process of doing st – the house is in the process of being rebuilt

We wasted little time (in) starting the game.

There wasn’t a single… left.

Have great difficulty (in) doing st – he had great difficulty opening the box.

I can’t make it (come) to the meeting.

On no account/under no circumstances + should/must/to be – On no account should this door be opened. Under no circumstances am I to be disturbed.

As far as… Is concerned… is… – As far as computers are concerned, John is a real expert.

It was only when …. That …. – It was only when I arrived home that I realised I had been robbed.

Just about to do st

To be on the point of doing st – I was just about to open the door when the phone rang.

The lack/absence of … caused…

Posted in Exam Preparation Class, Grammar Classes

Might/may…. but worksheet

This is a worksheet on might/may… but for qualifying criticism.

You can download the worksheet here:

might may… but

Might/may  – qualifying criticism

Messi may/might be small, but he’s the best Player in the world.

She might/may not speak much in class, but she always does well in the exams.

We use “may/might…., but” as another way of expressing “although/even though”

Even though he’s small, Messi is the best player in the world.

Although she doesn’t speak in class, she always does well in exams.

Match the sentence halves together.

1.    It might be cold, a.     But he’s fitter than me.
2.    He might be handsome, b.    But it has charm.
3.    She might look stupid, c.     But it’s sunny.
4.    He may be a heavy smoker, d.    But he’s great company.
5.    Exeter might be a small city, e.     But when you get to know him he’s really sweet.
6.    The dog might be really annoying, f.       But he’s a nasty piece of work.
7.    He might seem unfriendly, g.     But it gets me from A to B.
8.    It might not be the best car in the world, h.    But she knows a lot more than you.

Key: 1-c, 2-f, 3-h, 4-a, 5-b, 6-d, 7-e, 8-g

Make sentences about these celebrities using the structure: