215 – By vs With – English Preposition Lesson

MichaelADGrammar 4 Comments


This bread was made with a bread machine by following the directions carefully!

The prepositions by & with are both used to talk about how something is done, but the way we use them is a little different. For today’s English lesson let’s have look at how we use these two words in English conversation & writing.

Here are the example sentences:
Listen to the podcast or the check the transcript for the details

Using “by”

  • I bake the bread by using an old coal oven.
  • Simon improved his English by listening to the radio.
  • Akira caught the mouse by setting a trap.

Using “with”

  • You can make bread with any kind of flour.
  • When you cut it with a knife, the aroma fills the air.
  • Brad caught the mouse with a trap.
  • We see with our eyes.


  • Jack studied vocabulary by using a dictionary.
  • Jack studied vocabulary with a dictionary.

Using “by hand”

  • I have made bread by hand before.
  • Those candles are made by hand.

Using “by”

  • The power was knocked out by the hurricane.
  • The fire was reported by the building manager.

Using “with”

  • The bread was made with wheat flour and water.
  • Jack’s car was washed with a brush.
  • The wall was painted with a lovely light green paint.

If you know anyone who might be interested in this English language point, why not help them out! Just share this lesson with them. Thanks for studying today!

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Comments 4

  1. Michael,

    Do I must always use “by” in phrases like “Jack studied vocabulary by using a dictionary”?

    It sounds confusing to me because in Portuguese we don’t use preposition in that case.

    Thanks! 🙂

  2. Hi Michael.

    Excellent class. Thank you for all the know how that you’ve shared with us.

    Just want to let you know that I think that was an edition mistake at 00’30”.

    As your listener since last June, I’d like to make you sure that your program is OK.

    I’m sorry about my english. In just a new student.

    See you.

    1. Hi Octávio,
      Thanks for your message and the kind words. Yes, the original mp3 had some editing problems, but if you download it again, you’ll see that I’ve fixed that. Thank you!

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