Speaking as an English teacher and hopefully representing creative English teachers…
I don’t know your English teacher, but I do know that all those little tips that we English teachers think of are not always mentioned in class due to *1 time restrictions and having so much to do on the syllabus *2 with you.
Also, we have ideas for activities for you to do at home that would help your English level and English skills, but since we can only give a certain amount of homework we generally stick to *3 the official plan and don’t go crazy giving you tips and extra tasks.
Here are 7 Useful Things I would like to tell you, that unless there is an incredible coincidence, your teacher hasn’t told you this week!
(Vocabulary which may be more difficult is underlined and given a reference number in green. Under each section there is a vocabulary reference in green with the numbers and a synonym or explanation)
Vocabulary – *1 due to = because of, *2 syllabus = the official plan of what must be taught during a course, *3 to stick to = keep doing the same thing
1) Beginners must remember:
2) Can Instagram improve your English?
If you ask me – yes!
For example if you follow English ESL accounts on Instagram, which is an image focused social media, you can see images with usually clear explanations (it depends on the Instagram account) of what they are showing. It only takes a minute or two to have a look at a post and – like magic! You may have just learnt something new.
Of course, you know I am going to recommend my Instagram account first! I post all sorts of things about English, videos, videos with pronunciation, vocabulary, grammar, interviews, recommended watching, social English and lots more.
⇐ Here are a few of my recent posts.
Look for me on Instagram by typing Kim Griffiths English into the search bar…
Another Instagram account I think is enjoyable to follow and educational is Cambridge University Press Esp. Their images are really clear and explain language points very well! They use Spanish for native Spanish speakers as well as English. This is one of their images ⇒
3) Are you Creative?
There are many different ways of being creative: from how you tell anecdotes *4, to how you sign your name; from how you dress to how you paint master pieces.
I think of myself as creative. I like drawing, making bits of jewellery and thinking of different ways to make my classes interesting. Also I find my imagination making up *5 stories about the people in the metro, on the street and in my neighbourhood *6. For example, according to my creativity…
I have a neighbor that can fly who keeps his large pretty green fairy wings under his business suit jacket even in Summer, another neighbour who has worked as a missionary in Africa, and the man in the greengrocer’s *8 has a garden full of giant vegetables the size of sheep!
It isn’t true, I only made it up *5, but well, it makes life and the dog walks much more interesting for me.
Being creative can give us a break, a rest, and help us disconnect from the pressures of modern stressful life. If you are feeling lacking *7 in the creative aspect of your life have a look at these hobbies and may be try one or two.
Vocabulary *4 anecdote = a story of something which has happened to you, *5 to make up something = to invent something, *6 your neighbourhood = the area you live in *7 lacking = not having/without . *8 greengorcer’s = the shop where they sell fruit and vegetables.
Creative hobbies definitions.
- Photography = taking photos with a camera
- Knitting= using wood or plastic long needles to produce scarves and jumpers from wool. 🐑
- Crotchet = similar to knitting with wool but the tools is a smaller stick with a small hook on the end.
- Journaling = writing a detailed diary/record of your thoughts and experiences.
- Drawing = 2D (2 dimensional) art with a pencil ✏️
- Painting = 2D art with paint 🎨
- Sculpture = forming clay, wood, metal in to 3D works of art.
- Playing a musical instrumenr = for example, piano, the guitar or the flute.
- Cooking = making food.
- Baking = making cakes, biscuits or bread. 🍰
- Sewing = using a needle – a pointed metal object to join pieces of material to make clothes, bags etc.
4) 8 Great action words for on your CV and to use in Interviews
Many people when talking about their work experience or their education, keep repeating the word did and it:
- gets boring,
- makes your English level look limited,
- isn’t specific enough to really tell people what you actually did.
Try using stronger action words which are more specific. There are lots of different words.
If you don’t understand them, look them up *9 in your dictionaries or online dictionary.
Vocabulary *9 look something up = find it in a reference guide, telephone directory, dictionary…
5) A Tricky Word
Sometimes you can hear this word used wrongly by native English speakers even. I think that is because it sounds like amused which means entertained but the meaning is quite different as you can see in the image.
e.g. The home owner was bemused when he saw the painter had painted over his pictures, photos, window and posters.
e.g. Why are you looking at me in that bemused way?
6) Now how about some relaxing?
Or I could say resting, taking a breather, unwinding *10, taking it easy or chilling out for a while. Knowing synonyms or alternative words or expressions, makes your speaking more interesting and less repetitive. Also it will your raise your level and help you pass English exams.
Taking regular breaks while you are studying can increase your concentration and also stop you going crazy!
Snooze means to sleep and is informal.
Is that just what you fancy *11 doing now?
Vocabulary . *10 to unwind = to relax and forget about all the stress you have. *11 to fancy + verb + ing = feel like doing
7) What about watching an entertaining, funny black and white film to practice your English listening skills?
This film, called The Card, stars Alec Guinness who was a very respected British actor. He plays a poor boy who by using his brain manages to become a businessman and starts to become a richer man. A great entrepreneur character!
I think it is very positive because it shows that if you believe you can do something, it could be possible if you just get on with it and try. And also it is a comedy.
The full film is free on YouTube. This one doesn’t have subtitles but they speak quite clearly and it is possible to follow the story without understanding everything.
So those were 7 Useful things for learning English this week!
Did your other English teacher tell you any of these?
If you have any recommendations or questions please leave them in the comments and I’ll get back to you as soon as possible.
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Have a lovely Weekend! Full of relaxation and English! And have a great week!
All the Best,