English Lesson: Shopping Vocabulary

Michael Uncategorized 2 Comments

Do you like shopping? I like to shop when I travel and since the summer travel season is here, I thought we could take a look at some English vocabulary and expressions related to shopping. When you walk into a store, they have many goods and items for sale. When something is for sale, it means you can buy it. When something is on sale, it means the price is discounted. Compare these two sentences: Shoes are for sale in many different stores in the mall. There are many stores to buy shoes Shoes are on sale in many different stores in the mall. Many stores are offering discounted prices on shoes. When the store discounts several items, they are having a sale: Macy’s is having an Independence Day Sale. Everything is 20 to 40% off .  Sometimes, items may be marked as final sale. In this case, you cannot return or exchange the item you bought. Here are some more examples: Do you like my hat? It was on sale. I got this computer on sale for $400. I want a new watch, but I’ll wait until they have a sale. If you buy something, but then decide later …

English Lesson: Doctors and Hospitals

Michael Uncategorized 2 Comments

The other day, someone on twitter mentioned that they were in the hospital. I got so worried, and then I remembered that for her, being in the hospital might not be as bad as I thought. Do you know why? Well, let’s look at how we talk about the world of medicine and doctors in American English. In the US, we generally visit our family doctor in his or her private office. Sometimes this office is called a clinic. If we go to a hospital, it is for an emergency (like a broken leg, bad cut, accident, etc) or for surgery. So, the place your doctor sees you and his patients for non-emergencies, is his office. I went to the doctor’s yesterday (for a non-emergency) I went to the hospital yesterday (for an emergency or operation) This is an important point. If you say you went to the hospital, your friends will worry about you. For such non-emergencies, we usually make an appointment to see the doctor. Once we make the appointment, we have an appointment. You can also say that you are going to see the doctor: I have a doctor’s appointment tomorrow at 3:00 I need to make …

English Lesson: Using “Other”

Michael Uncategorized 6 Comments

I have a friend who lives in Istanbul. We write emails to each other every week. The other day, he sent me some photos from his vacation home in Izmir. In almost every other photo he was standing with a different girl. He must be a popular guy there! He must be dating one after another.  Other is an intersting word in English. Do you know how to use other? Take a look at the paragraph above and then check out today’s lesson:  Each other means the two of us together, or all of us together. We can also say, one another: We write emails to each other every week. I write to him and he writes to me. Ed and Paul haven’t seen one another in a long time. Ed hasn’t seen Paul, and Paul hasn’t seen Ed. The three of us have worked with each other for ten years. All of us have worked together for ten years. If we all got along with one another, there would be world peace. If all of the people in the world…. Every other means there are at least three or more things and we are talking about the first, third, …

Holidays & Vacations in American English

Michael Uncategorized Leave a Comment

Hi Everyone! Today I’d like to look at some vocabulary and expressions related to taking time off from work or school. Special days in your country which have historical or religious roots are called holidays. In the USA, we have holidays like New Year’s Day, President’s day, Independence Day, etc. In most countries, some of these holidays are days of the year that the government has decided public offices and businesses should be closed. These are called national holidays. In the USA, for most people the work week is Monday to Friday. Wednesday, which falls in the middle of the week, is often called hump day. People who have such a work week have off on the weekend, or we can say they have the weekend off. Thus for most of these people, Saturday and Sunday are their days off. Some people have different days off. Let’s look at some of this vocabulary in some example sentences: Christmas is my favorite holiday. The office is closed on Monday because it is a national holiday. My work week is Monday to Friday. Happy hump day everyone! (note that this word is used in informal conversation only) I love having the weekend …

Phrasal Verbs with “Hang” English Lesson From NY

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A phrasal verb is a verb followed by a preposition that has an idiomatic usage and meaning. Today, we will look at some commonly used phrasal verbs using hang. When you want to encourage someone to keep positive, you can say, hang in there: Hang in there, Jane. I’m sure you’re going to find a new boyfriend soon. Hang on means to wait for a short time. When you are walking down the street with a friend, you might say: Hang on. I want to run into the bank. When you speak on the phone, and you want the person on the other end to wait, you can ask them to hang on: Hang on, Joe. I’ll call my mom to the phone. When you finish the phone call, you need to hang up the phone. When you hang out, it means you are relaxing and spending time not doing anything specifically. Do you want to hang out at my house tomorrow? I think everyone is hanging out at the pool hall tonight. Let’s go! I know this is a lot to remember, so just hang in there. I am sure you’ll get the hang of phrasal verbs. Where do …

English Idiom “Have a ball” from Happy English NY

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Are you having a ball? Did you have a ball last weekend? If you have a ball, it means that you have a fun, exciting, and interesting time. You can follow this expression with a gerund (verb+ing). Here are some examples:      -We had a ball at the party last night! Thanks for inviting us.      -I had a ball sailing last summer, and looking forward to doing it again.      -Kids always have a ball when their parents are not home.      -Enjoy your trip to London. Have a ball! We also use the expression, have a blast to mean the same thing as have a ball.      -We had a blast at the party last night! Thanks for inviting us.      -I had a blast sailing last summer, and looking forward to doing it again. When was the last time you had a ball? What were you doing? Where were you? 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!

English Idiom “Rip-off” from Happy English NY

Michael Idioms Leave a Comment

Today we are going to look at the idiom rip-off, which can be used as a noun or a verb. This  expression means stealing or cheating. We often use rip-off when we feel we have been overcharged for something. In this case, we say that something is/was a rip-off:      -They charge $9 for a beer at the baseball stadium. What a rip-off!      -The tire center was such a rip off. I paid $100 for a new tire, and they charged me $85 for the labor. We also use rip-off when we are dissatisfied with value of something we bought or service we paid for.      -That camera was a rip-off. The batteries last less than an hour, and the picture quality is terrible.      -Cheap sunglasses are always a rip-off. They break easily, and the lenses are usually not so good. We can also use rip-off as a verb with the same meaning. For example,  if someone or some business has cheated you, or if someone has stolen from you. In this case, the structure is:             [someone] ripped [someone] off                                                   or                         [someone] ripped off [someone’s thing]       -The mechanic at the tire center ripped me off.      -Someone …