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Showing posts with label GRAMMAR PILLS. Show all posts
Showing posts with label GRAMMAR PILLS. Show all posts

Sunday, October 21, 2018

WEEKLY PICKS - 22

This is a weekly selection of reading articles, free online exercises, YouTube videos, games, quizzes and resources for you to further improve your English language skills and have fun – ENJOY!

📜READING PICKS – Articles, blog posts, quizzes and more:

F
rom BBC CAPITAL: How similar you are to your partner can affect your happiness, by Christian Jarrett. Researchers have found that how similar you are to your partner can affect your happiness – but it’s complicated.
Among many monogamous species, from cockatiels to cichlid fish, studies have revealed a clear pattern: it helps to be more similar to your mate. When mating pairs are behaviourally similar, their reproductive success tends to be higher.
In human terms, this would imply it’s better to be similar to your partner. Indeed, for a long time psychologists and others have argued that similarity is probably beneficial – after all, then we will be more likely to enjoy the same pursuits, values and outlook on life.
But no matter how intuitive the idea seems, for decades nearly every study has failed to support it.
Now, though, a team of psychologists at the University of Amsterdam think they know why. They have taken a far more sophisticated and nuanced look at the issue than in previous research. (Continue reading)

From BBC REEL: Reel: The oldest coffee in the world. From huts in remote villages to internet cafes in the capital city, coffee ceremonies are the centre of social life and hospitality in Ethiopia, the birthplace of coffee. (Continue reading)

🎬 VIDEO PICKS – Short and fun videos:

LESS-THAN-5-MINUTE VIDEOS:
How to show annoyance (4:11 minutes)
5-TO-10-MINUTE VIDEOS:
Salary Negotiation: 6 Tips on How to Negotiate a Higher Salary (9:56 minutes)
A LITTLE LONGER BUT WORTH IT!
HISTORY: CONSUMERISM (10:52 minutes)
💬 VOCABULARY PICKS:
VOCABULARY: Words with more than one spelling (6:16 minutes)
💡 GRAMMAR PICKS – Assorted exercises and games:
Learn English: "last year" OR "in the last year" (8:26 minutes)
MORE PICKS NEXT WEEK!

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

GRAMMAR PILLS: How to use articles - A/AN, THE and ZERO article

How do we use articles in English?

💡 Quick answer:

NOUNS
In general
(indefinite / non-specific)
In particular
(definite / specific)
Uncountable
Countable Plural
(1) Zero article
(3) the (el, la, los, las)
Countable Singular
(2) a / an (un, uno, una)

💡 EXTENDED ANSWER:

(1) When we talk about an uncountable noun or a countable plural noun in general (i.e. we talk about all the items in a group, or there is no need to specify an item in particular), we do NOT use an article:
Cuando hablamos de un sustantivo (=nombre) incontable o contable plural en general (es decir, hablamos de todos los elementos de un conjunto o no hay necesidad de especificar uno en particular), NO usamos artículo:

Advances
in technology (❌The advances) have made it easier for us to keep in touch with our loved ones.
Modern technology (❌The modern technology) is essential to our lives, both at home and at work.
Students (❌The students) should hand in their assignments on time.
People (❌The people) are the same everywhere.
👉In these examples, we are talking about 'technology', 'students', and 'people' in general.


(
2) When we talk about a countable singular noun in general (i.e. we talk about one non-specific item in a group), we use a / an (the indefinite article):
Cuando hablamos de un sustantivo contable singular en general (es decir, hablamos de un elemento no especificado en un conjunto), usamos 'a' / 'an' (un, uno, una = el artículo indefinido):

⟶ I went to a pub last night. (Fui a un bar anoche.)
⟶ I’ve got a car. (Tengo un coche.)
⟶ He gave me an apple. (Él me dio una manzana.)


🔺 ‘A’ or ‘an’?

Use ‘a’ before words that start with a consonant SOUND:
Usamos ‘a’ antes de palabras que comienzan con un SONIDO consonante:
A university degree ⇒ ‘u’ is pronounced /juː/ here, and /j/ is a consonant sound
a one-hour class ⇒ ‘one’ is pronounced /wʌn/, and /w/ is a consonant sound
⟶ a uniform / a house, etc.

Use ‘an’ before words that start with a vowel SOUND:
Usamos ‘a’ antes de palabras que comienzan con un SONIDO vocal:
An honest man ⇒ ‘h’ is silent here, and the first sound is a vowel: /ˈɒnɪst/
an hour ⇒ ‘h’ is silent here, and the first sound is a vowel: /aʊə/
an MBA degree, etc.


(
3) When we talk about an uncountable, a countable plural or a countable singular noun in particular (i.e. we talk about a specific item, or there is only one item in the group, and it is therefore clear which item we are talking about – e.g.: ‘the sun’), we use ‘the’ (the definite article):
Cuando hablamos de un sustantivo incontable, contable plural o contable singular en particular (es decir, hablamos un elemento específico, o hay un solo elemento en el conjunto, por ejemplo: the sun’, el sol’), usamos ‘the’ (el, la, los, las = el artículo definido):

⟶ A look at the advances in technology during the 1960s (los avances en tecnología durante la década de los 60), from washing machines to computers. (BBC Four) (a specific set of advances)
The students who failed the exam (Los alumnos que reprobaron el examen) should study hard for the resit. (a specific group of students)
The people who migrate (La gente que migra) are called migrants. (a specific group of people)


👉The rules above apply to almost all cases; however, there are some special uses that should also be taken into account. Read more:
🎬 VIDEOS:
Using zero articles - BBC English Class (2:10 minutes)
The definite article - BBC English Class (2:22 minutes)
Learn about indefinite articles with singular countable nouns - BBC English Class (2:40 minutes)
GRAMMAR: How to use the definite article with abstract uncountable nouns (6:04 minutes)

📌 Practice:

Sunday, October 14, 2018

WEEKLY PICKS - 21

This is a weekly selection of reading articles, free online exercises, YouTube videos, games, quizzes and resources for you to further improve your English language skills while having fun ENJOY!

📜READING PICKS – Articles, blog posts, quizzes and more:

From BBC CAPITAL: How to avoid awkward work conversations, by Alison Green. BBC World Service contributor Alison Green has been giving workplace advice for over a decade. She is still surprised at how many people avoid difficult interactions with colleagues. [This story is from an episode of Business Matters from the BBC World Service. To listen to more episodes, please click here.] (Continue reading)

From BBC FUTURE: A little bit of boasting could have benefits, by Talya Rachel Meyers. Many cultures tend to praise modesty and humility. But new research has revealed that the tendency to feel, and show, pride evolved for a reason – and plays a key role even today.
Pride is the downfall of many a tragic hero. Mr Darcy has to let his go before he can earn Elizabeth Bennet’s love. Dante listed it as one of the seven deadly sins. And as the famous (and oft-misquoted) verse from Proverbs cautions us, it “goeth before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall”.
There’s no question about it: we’re consistently told that pride makes us obnoxious at best and doomed at worst.
But pride may not entirely deserve this reputation as a destructive force. There’s new evidence that this emotion has an evolutionary function, and that it plays an important role in the way that we interact with the world. (Continue reading)

🎬 VIDEO PICKS – Short and fun videos:

LESS-THAN-5-MINUTE VIDEOS:
Visiting London - Beginner's Guide for Shopping in London (3:48 minutes)
5-TO-10-MINUTE VIDEOS:
HOW TO: Making informal invitations (6:02 minutes)
A LITTLE LONGER BUT WORTH IT!
5 English Pronunciation Tricks EVERY English Student Should Be Using (13:59 minutes)
💬 VOCABULARY PICKS:
VOCABULARY: How to use synonyms (6:08 minutes)
💡 GRAMMAR PICKS – Assorted exercises and games:
BBC Learning English - 6 Minute Grammar - Phrasal and prepositional verbs (6:32 minutes)
MORE PICKS NEXT WEEK!

Sunday, October 07, 2018

WEEKLY PICKS - 20

This is a weekly selection of reading articles, free online exercises, YouTube videos, games, quizzes and resources for you to further improve your English language skills while having fun ENJOY!

📜READING PICKS – Articles, blog posts, quizzes and more:

From BBC FUTURE: The pill can make the body store more fat – and gain less muscle, by Zaria Gorvett. Many women believe that the pill can cause weight gain. Research hasn’t found this – but it has found that it can change body shape (and fat storage) in other surprising ways. (Continue reading)

From BBC NEWS: Introducing BBC Reel This week, we launched our new video platform that will be the global home for the BBC’s best factual digital output. Here you can find some of the interesting characters and deeper human stories featured on Reel. (GO TO BBC REEL)

From BBC TRAVEL: The most expensive down in the world, by Meg Lukens Noonan. Just south of the Arctic Circle, a few dedicated Norwegians are keeping the tradition of sustainable eiderdown farming alive – and are making some of the world’s most coveted duvets. (Continue reading)

🎬 VIDEO PICKS – Short and fun videos:

LESS-THAN-5-MINUTE VIDEOS:
Polite questions: Stop Saying (2:29 minutes)
5-TO-10-MINUTE VIDEOS:
Do you lead a sedentary lifestyle? Watch 6 Minute English (6:14 minutes)
A LITTLE LONGER BUT WORTH IT!
Visit America - The DON'Ts of Visiting The USA (14:04 minutes)
💬 VOCABULARY PICKS:
Learners' Questions: Using 'actually', 'in fact' and 'well' (2:24 minutes)
💡 GRAMMAR PICKS – Assorted exercises and games:
BBC English Masterclass: Gerund or infinitive? (4:19 minutes)
MORE PICKS NEXT WEEK!

Sunday, September 30, 2018

WEEKLY PICKS - 19

This is a weekly selection of reading articles, free online exercises, YouTube videos, games, quizzes and resources for you to further improve your English language skills while having fun – ENJOY!

📜READING PICKS – Articles, blog posts, quizzes and more:

From BBC CULTURE: Images that defined the Soviet Union, by Fiona Macdonald. Red Star Over Russia is an exhibition that offers a visual history of Russia and the Soviet Union. Fiona Macdonald finds out how these images foreshadowed fake news.
“We all live in an age of fake news. But it wasn’t invented with Twitter and YouTube – it was used in the 1930s to make real people disappear,” said curator Natalia Sidlina at the opening of a new exhibition at London’s Tate Modern. Red Star Over Russia, which launched on the centenary of the October Revolution, is focused on the powerful imagery created in Russia and the Soviet Union from 1905 to 1955 – but, inevitably, politics seeps through.
And the relevance of these images today is hard to escape. “We planned the exhibition to coincide with the anniversary of the October Revolution, yet it does seem to be inviting comparisons with what’s going on around the world right now,” Tate Modern’s head of displays Matthew Gale tells BBC Culture. (Continue reading)

From CAMBRIDGE DICTIONARY: 1066 and all that: How to say years by Liz Walter. Being able to name a year is a pretty basic English skill, but there are a few things that can make it complicated, and there are a number of differences between British and American English.
Let’s start with the (relatively) easy ones. For years like 1345, 1682 or 1961, we say the first two and the second two digits as if they were single numbers: thirteen forty-five; sixteen eighty-two; nineteen sixty-one. If the third digit is zero, there are two possible ways of saying the year: … (Continue reading)

🎬 VIDEO PICKS – Short and fun videos:

LESS-THAN-5-MINUTE VIDEOS:
Why English is so hard to learn: silent letters (1:22 minutes)
5-TO-10-MINUTE VIDEOS:
Skills for Work: Interview Skills (6:43 minutes)
A LITTLE LONGER BUT WORTH IT!
10 ESSENTIAL Do's and Don'ts in London (Don't make these MISTAKES!) (14:45 minutes)
💬 VOCABULARY PICKS:
English Grammar - comparing with LIKE & AS (9:10 minutes)
💡 GRAMMAR PICKS – Assorted exercises and games:
Stative verbs in the continuous form: BBC English Masterclass (3:45 minutes)
MORE PICKS NEXT WEEK!

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