Extrovert or introvert? (Describing character, part 4)

Francesco Carta fotografo/Moment/Getty Images

by Kate Woodford

Today’s post is the latest in a thread dedicated to describing people’s personalities. We’ve previously looked at adjectives and phrases for people who are relaxed and happy (Part 3), kind and mean (Part 2), and hard-working and lazy (Part 1). Today we focus on words and phrases meaning ‘sociable’ and ‘shy’.

Continue reading “Extrovert or introvert? (Describing character, part 4)”

It makes my flesh crawl: idioms for Halloween

Martin Deja/Moment/Getty Images

by Liz Walter

The evening of October 31st usually sees hordes of children dressed up as ghosts, skeletons or other scary figures, excitedly collecting mountains of sweets on their ‘trick-or-treat’ expeditions. Covid-19 has paused many of these activities, but I hope you will still enjoy this post on spooky idioms! Continue reading “It makes my flesh crawl: idioms for Halloween”

Laid-back and sunny (Describing character, part 3)

Flashpop/DigitalVision/Getty Images

by Kate Woodford

Today’s post is the latest in a thread devoted to describing people’s characters. In the previous two posts, we looked at ways of talking about people who are hard-working, ambitious, and lazy, among other traits. As usual, we start on a positive note, looking at words and phrases that describe people who are relaxed.

Continue reading “Laid-back and sunny (Describing character, part 3)”

Applying for a job or handing in your notice: collocations for work (1)

ljubaphoto/E+/Getty Images

by Liz Walter

One of our readers recently asked for a post on collocations relating to the world of work. Well, she’s lucky because she’s getting two of them! This first one focuses on starting and leaving jobs.

Continue reading “Applying for a job or handing in your notice: collocations for work (1)”

Kind-hearted or ruthless? (Describing character, Part 2)

Jasmin Merdan/Moment/Getty Images

by Kate Woodford

With this post, we continue the ‘describing people’ thread, looking at adjectives that we use to describe people’s characters. Today, we focus on a set of near-synonyms for the adjective ‘kind’.

Continue reading “Kind-hearted or ruthless? (Describing character, Part 2)”

It goes without saying: phrases with ‘say’

mikroman6/Moment/Getty Images

by Liz Walter

I was writing some learning materials on the topic of communication the other day, when I noticed how many common phrases include the word ‘say’. This post looks at some of the most useful of them.

Continue reading “It goes without saying: phrases with ‘say’”

Beating up, ganging up on and putting someone down: phrasal verbs for bad behaviour (2)

Carol Yepes/Moment/Getty Images

by Liz Walter

In an earlier post, I looked at phrasal verbs connected with children’s bad behaviour and with some general adult bad behaviour. In this post, I will cover phrasal verbs connected with bullying, violent and dishonest behaviour.

Continue reading “Beating up, ganging up on and putting someone down: phrasal verbs for bad behaviour (2)”

Spotless or squalid? (Words for ‘clean’ and ‘dirty’)

Chakrapong Worathat/EyeEm/Getty Images

by Kate Woodford

COVID-19 has made us all very aware of how clean our hands and surfaces are. With cleanliness in mind, we thought it might be a good time to look at the language around being clean and being dirty.

Continue reading “Spotless or squalid? (Words for ‘clean’ and ‘dirty’)”

Staying at home, going home or working from home: using the word ‘home’.

Alexander Spatari/Moment/Getty Images

by Liz Walter

Spending several weeks under (partial) lockdown has made me think more deeply about the concept of ‘home’. It’s a word that has a huge amount of implied meaning over and above its main literal meaning of ‘the place where you live’. It is also a very common word that can cause problems for learners because it acts in odd ways with regard to the use of prepositions.

Continue reading “Staying at home, going home or working from home: using the word ‘home’.”

Playing up, showing off or letting someone down: phrasal verbs for bad behaviour (1)

Catherine Delahaye/Stone/Getty Images

by Liz Walter

It struck me recently that there are rather a lot of phrasal verbs connected with people behaving badly so I thought this might be a useful topic. In fact, there are so many of them that there will be two posts: this one on children’s behaviour and general bad behaviour and one on more serious wrongdoing such as violence, bullying and dishonesty.

Continue reading “Playing up, showing off or letting someone down: phrasal verbs for bad behaviour (1)”