1289143735_how-to-teach-idioms 15 Common English Idioms and Phrases With Their Meaning

1. ‘The best of both worlds’ – means you can enjoy two different opportunities at the same time. “By working part-time and looking after her kids two days a week she managed to get the best of both worlds.” 2. ‘Speak of the devil’ – this means that the person you’re just talking about actually … Read More

English Weekly Trivia 7

Contranyms are words that can mean the opposite of itself, like “cleave” and “fast”. Look up the dictionary! An oxymoron is a rhetorical figure of speech in which contradictory or incongruous terms are conjoined and these combinations are self-contradictory or absurd. Examples are: boneless ribs, jumbo shrimp, deafening silence. A gerund, or a verbal noun … Read More

terrific_terrible Why Does 'Terrible' Mean Bad and Terrific Mean Good?

We go watch a TV show or some movie, and we’d hear the expression: ‘terrible’ or ‘terrific’. By then, hopefully, we already know what those two words mean. But why do they sound so similar but used at extremely different moments? As if the two words are each used as one side of a coin? … Read More

Weekly English Trivia 6

“Judgment” is the preferred spelling in comparison with “Judgement” in American standard English. In American standard English, unlike British English, it’s not all right to use alright in place of all right. Those moments when you just can’t seem to recall a word is mostly called as ‘tip-of-the-tongue syndrome (or phenomenon)’. Words “Lethonomia” and “Lethologica” … Read More

tumblr_lprgqpN6OM1qzdi59o1_500 Double Negatives

In English class, you should have heard the line “Avoid using double negatives” from your teacher. Well, if you haven’t, you’re reading what it is about right now so don’t worry. So what is a double negative? Two negative expressions, or words in the same sentence is a double negative. The two negatives usually cancel … Read More

Weekly English Trivia 5

The word family first referred to the servants of a household and then to both the servants and the descendants of a common ancestor. It comes from the Latin word familia, meaning ‘household; household servants’, which came from another Latin term famulus, or ‘servant’. Y is the only letter commonly used as both vowel and … Read More

a-young-man-makes-the-ok-sign-in-the-1950s-more-than-a-century-after-the-ubiquitous-expression-was What is the Real Origin of OK?

We come across the expression “OK” from almost every language spoken today. I’m sure even for non-native English speakers who never bothered to learn English properly, “OK” is a well-known, if not common, expression used in everyday conversation. So where did this all-purpose expression originate from? Surely it couldn’t have popped up out of nowhere. … Read More

Colorful-Clippings-Newspaper-English-Letters-485x728 What Makes Vowels Vowels and Consonants Consonants?

You already know that the letters “a”, “e”, “i”, “o”, “u”, and sometimes “y” are vowels, while the rest of the letters of the English alphabets are called consonants. And so, knowing this, did you ever wonder why the English alphabet is divided into those two groups? Before moving on, what is a vowel? Consonant? … Read More

Weekly English Trivia 4

“Q” is the only letter that does not occur in any of the U.S. state names. Words like “Orange”, “Purple”, “Walrus”, and “Month” does not have words that rhyme with it. Over 377 million people at the least speak English as their first language. The verb “Set” has 464 definitions in the Oxford English Dictionary, … Read More

tongue-twister Tongue Twisters

“Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers. A peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked. If Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers, Where’s the peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked?” Have you ever come across this short tale of Peter Piper and his peck of pickled peppers? It doesn’t really have … Read More

Weekly English Trivia 3

Words or sentences that reads the same forward as it does backward are called Palindromes. Medieval music term “Euouae”, is the longest word in English that contains only vowels. “Unprosperousness”, meaning not wealthy or profitable, is the longest word in which each letter is used at least twice. At 45 letters, “Pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis,” which refers to … Read More

words1 Word Stress

Word stress is often referred as the magic key to understanding spoken English. While native speakers find this too natural that they rarely notice it, non-native speakers often encounter problems such as not being able to understand each other during a conversation. Aside from homophones (words that are pronounced the same as the other word but … Read More

jackie-chan-whut Why is English so HARD to Learn?

Even Oxford agrees, that English is one of the hardest languages to learn. Many words in English stem from Latin and ancient Greek Words, and the language was further affected by Anglo-Saxons, French, and other influential things over the globe throughout history; which, in the end, mostly make no sense in some ways. Even if … Read More

Weekly English Trivia 2

Shortest word in English containing all the five vowels is “Eunoia”, which means “well mind” or “beautiful thinking.” Ironically, “pronunciation” is the most mispronunced word in English. “Rhythms” is the longest word in English without a vowel. The letter “j” was the last letter added into the alphabet. Native Americans used to bury weapons to show … Read More

main-qimg-97e65c4211537c30a830bd7f8f1b50d3 You Must Know How the Word "Literally" Should be Used, Li...

Nope, you can’t literally explode from excitement for your dear event. Human body doesn’t work that way. Nope, you are not literally dying of laughter from a joke you encountered. If you are, you shouldn’t be able to share the story with me. And no. You should call the fire department and get medical assistance if your … Read More

Weekly English Trivia 1

Most frequently used alphabet in English language is the letter “e” while the least frequently used letter is “z”. “Feedback” is the shortest word in English that has the letters “a”, “b”, “c”, “d”, “e”, and “f”. The sentence “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog” is a pangram, which is a sentence that … Read More

6124465150_e01e8edf1a_b Figures of Speech

A figure of speech is a word or phrase that has a meaning something different than its literal meaning. The most commly taught figures of speeches are Metaphor, Smiile, Personification and Hyperbole. A simile is a figure of speech comparing two unlike things, often introduced with the word “like” or “as”. It takes the form … Read More

common-english-use-mistakes (1) 5 Most Common Grammatical Errors

Error #1: Run-on Sentence or Comma Splice A run-on sentence is a sentence that joins two independent clauses without punctuation or the appropriate conjunction. Fixing a run-on sentence or a comma splice can be accomplished in one of five different ways: 1. Separate the clauses into two sentences. 2. Replace the comma with a semi-colon. 3. … Read More

EssayWritingStudent The Secret to Becoming Better at Writing Essays

Time and again, you’ll hear people say the old cliché—“practice makes perfect”—whenever talking about how to improve on a certain skill or sport. However, getting good at writing or any other academic endeavor isn’t as simple as practicing for hours until your pen runs dry and your legs become numb from sitting way too long. … Read More

GrammarIssues 3 Common Grammar Issues to Always Remember

It’s never a pleasant experience when somebody points out that something you have written have punctuation or grammar mistakes here and there—more so when you’ve posted your article on social media platforms/blogs and some random person tells the rest of the netizens that you’ve misspelt a word in it. Imagine how embarrassing that will be. … Read More

alumni-association-gives-away-ipad2 Kindle Reader: An Invaluable Companion for the ESL Learne...

While anyone would want to master English in the shortest amount of time, the truth is that there isn’t a shortcut to learning ESL. You’ll have to get yourself acquainted with new words every day, understand its grammar rules bit by bit, and listen or read a whole lot of stuff in English—all of which … Read More

Apple English Learner Some Handy iOS Mobile Apps for ESL Students

With almost 80% of online users worldwide owning smartphones by the start of this year, it’s easy to see why devices such as the iPhone have become necessary everyday tools for many of us today. And as these devices continue to get more popular, their functionality has also expanded to a point where you can … Read More

AuralComprehensionTip An Easy Guide to Better Listen and Understand Spoken Engl...

Ask any ESL learner why they find native English speakers difficult to comprehend and you’ll hear a common complaint: “their words are incomprehensible”.   In most cases, most ESL students find learning aural comprehension quite challenging simply because the language that they’re taught in the classroom (or with a tutor) sounds way different from how … Read More

ReadingComprehensionTip 3 Practical Reading Comprehension Tricks That Every ESL S...

Do you find yourself reading sentences over and over again because you weren’t able to understand the selection the first time you read it? Well, you’re definitely not alone with that dilemma. Indeed, many find it difficult grasping written English quickly and effectively.   However, there is no need to despair. With these reading tricks, … Read More

VocabularyTip Learning New Words is Easy

Being able to give the impression that you’re intelligent, being able to communicate clearly and concisely, and getting people to understand you better—these are just some of the reasons why it’s a must to improve your vocabulary. However, the path towards expanding your personal lexicon is one wrought with hard work and patience. In other … Read More

PronunciationTip Work On Your Pronunciation in 3 Easy, No-Nonsense Steps!

While you may be worried that you won’t ever sound like a native speaker, one thing you have to remember is that that isn’t why you need to improve how you pronounce the English language. The main reason you need to work on that aspect is so that people, native speaker or non-native speaker alike, … Read More