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Casual Polite Greeting #3: How’s Everything? -by Katheryn Reilly

Ready for your next casual polite greeting?
  1. How’s everything?

How’s everything is a casual polite greeting that is used to ask casually about another person’s life.  It is used to greet a person you already know, and should not be used to greet a stranger.  The greeting “How’s everything” can also be replaced with “How are things?”  In this case, “things” refers to the aspects in an individual’s life such as family, friends, job, and other topics that friends routinely talk about with one another.

How’s everything?

*Not to be confused with “How’s everything?” when a waiter comes to your table. In this situation they are asking if you are happy with the food.

 

By the way, how are things with you?

How’s it going with your lessons?

Today, send us a comment using one of the casual polite greetings you have learned, so far, and get a half price lesson!

 

 

 

 

Kathryn Reilly is a veteran English teacher with freelance writing and editing experience. While teaching students from diverse backgrounds and learning abilities, she has created many educational aids and implemented new lessons to enhance their learning experience. She has created online educational tutorials as well as content articles for a variety of clients.

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For new students General English Listening News Uncategorized Vocabulary

Casual Polite Greeting #2 – What’s up? by Katheryn Reilly

What’s Up

What’s Up?

What’s up? : This polite greeting is a shorter way of asking “How are you?” or “How do you do?”  It is a very casual way to ask about what’s been happening in a person’s life when you first greet them.  It is often accompanied by a smile or hug but not a handshake due to its very casual nature.

Have you ever asked someone “How are you?” or “How do you do?” instead of that word? Maybe you should give it a try.

Note that it is not WhatsAPP! but it is What’s up?
Speaking of WhatsAPP, did you know we have WhatsAPP lessons. Come schedule a WhatsAPP lesson with Teresa and give it a try!

Stay tuned tomorrow for Katheryn’s next casual, polite greeting.

Kathryn Reilly is a veteran English teacher with freelance writing and editing experience. While teaching students from diverse backgrounds and learning abilities, she has created many educational aids and implemented new lessons to enhance their learning experience. She has created online educational tutorials as well as content articles for a variety of clients. 

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For new students General English Listening News Uncategorized Vocabulary

Casual polite greeting #1 – Hey There! by Katheryn Reilly

Remember those casual polite greetings we told you about yesterday? As we promised, here is the first one:

  1. Hey there!

This greeting is very casual and used typically between individuals that are already acquainted, and may have met before several times.  It is most often used by younger individuals when speaking to others similar in age.  Sometimes, “Hey!” is used by itself as a friendly greeting with a friendly nod.  However one should remember that in English, the word “hey” can also be used as an attention getter to focus someone’s attention.  Therefore, it is best to use the phrase “Hey there!” as a polite greeting.

 

Come back tomorrow to see what casual, polite greeting Katheryn has for you next!

 

Kathryn Reilly is a veteran English teacher with freelance writing and editing experience. While teaching students from diverse backgrounds and learning abilities, she has created many educational aids and implemented new lessons to enhance their learning experience. She has created online educational tutorials as well as content articles for a variety of clients. 

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For new students General English Listening News Uncategorized Vocabulary

Polite Greetings in the English Language – by Kathryn Reilly

Polite Greetings

Greeting someone with Casual Polite English Greetings is the first step to making a good first impression.  While you likely know “Hello” and “How are you”, these very casual greetings may not be quite right for every type of encounter.  You should use polite greetings  when meeting someone for the first time, when greeting someone you’ve met a few times, when greeting someone you haven’t seen a long time, or when greeting a coworker outside of a business context.  Be sure to also use friendly body language such as smiling, eye contact, and/or an extended hand for a handshake.  A wave or hug could also be appropriate if the meeting is between friends and taking place in a causal environment such as a mall or at a park.  This week we will share the eight most common with you. Visit daily for the next eight days to learn them.

 

In the meantime, why don’t you schedule some lessons so you can practice?

 

Can you tell us some of your favorite casual polite English greetings? Let’s see if Kathryn’s are the same as yours.

 

 

 

Kathryn Reilly is a veteran English teacher with freelance writing and editing experience. While teaching students from diverse backgrounds and learning abilities, she has created many educational aids and implemented new lessons to enhance their learning experience. She has created online educational tutorials as well as content articles for a variety of clients. 

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For new students General English Listening News Uncategorized Vocabulary

Listening on your own? By Ana Sierra

Listening on your own?

When I was a little girl, I was made to study English as my second language, and I hated it. It was really boring, I was taught lots of grammar rules and writing, but I was never made to speak! So after many years of studying, I couldn’t say a word or express an idea of my own. We never listened to any English either.

One day I realized that it didn’t make any sense.It came to my mind that when we learn our first language, we listen a lot and then we speak. We learn by listening,not by studying rules or reading. And when we start speaking, we usually make mistakes – that’s normal. It doesn’t matter if we don’t use our grammar correctly.We just go on listening until we self-correct our mistakes. Right?

So I thought, why can’t we do the same with a second language: listen a lot and then try to speak; first by repeating what we hear and then, when we get the right words and phrases, we can say what we want? The thing is to listen to our second language as much as we can, so we need to find resources. Fortunately, today we have plenty of stuff on the Internet. We have many sites for students of English. We have different social networks. We have news pages with special activities for students of English, We have movies, and of course Youtube, among other resources.

Let’s see some ideas here:

What do you think? What about this?

The thing is to listen as much as we can! Listen! Listen! Listen!!! It makes sense, right? It’s logical. It’s practical. You can do it while you clean up or tidy your room. You can listen when you walk to school. You can listen when you have a shower!  It’s “ready-to-use” material. You listen and then you can say or repeat what you have just heard.

 

At all levels. You can listen and repeat simple words or phrases first. You can start with some basic vocabulary words:

 

And then build up, add some ideas and learn new expressions:

 

Have you enjoyed Ana’s lesson on listening so far? Well come back next week because she has more fun and listening for you! In the meantime, why not put those listening skills to work by communicating with your fellow students in a group lesson? You can schedule yours here.

 

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“I Choose You” -choosing the right words and register in English – by Bethany Hall

“I Choose You”

choosing the right words and register in English

In the much-loved pilot episode, “Pokemon-I choose you” of the Pokemon anime series, Ash and his Pokemon, Pikachu do not get on very well at first. However, as we all know, Ash and Pikachu form one of the most iconic friendships we have ever witnessed.
It can be much the same when learning a new language. We can struggle with pronunciation and grammar but with some hard work can a beneficial and enjoyable relationship with the language.

What to do…
I Choose You

One element that can make our learning easier is to know what to say and how to say it in different situations. Like Ash, let’s choose wisely.

A formal situation:

A formal situation will usually be impersonal without much emotion, like a job interview or an official speech. One would use technical words that are relevant to the conversation. We would always use complete sentences that express a complete idea. We would avoid using slang, abbreviations, such as “influenza” instead of “flu” and clichés. You could use words such as “however” instead of “but” or “moreover” in place of “also”. In this situation there would be no interruptions and usually involves one-way participation, i.e. a speaker and an audience.

A consultative situation:

A step away from the ceremonial conduct of the formal situation is the casual situation. This would take place between a doctor and a patient or a student and a teacher and the like. Fill sentences are still used as well as technical language. However, there is two-way participation and interruptions are quite common.

A casual situation:

This situation will be with your social group and acquaintances. Slang is often used in this situation and interruptions are common. There are more filler words such as “like” or “um”.

An intimate situation:

In this situation, how you say it is more important than what you say. As this is a situation involving only your closest friends and family, they will pick up on your non-verbal messages and so grammar is not so important here.

By following these simple tips, you and the English language can have a friendship as beautiful as Ash and Pikachu!

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For new students General English IELTS Preparation Listening News pronunciation speaking TOEFL Uncategorized Vocabulary Writing in English

Learning A New Language is Embarrassing! How Can I Speak English Confidently?

Consider this a public service announcement for anyone who is feeling negatively about their language learning experience. Here we want to provide you with 3 simple methods for getting your mind out of a rut about your abilities.

learning new language
Learning New Language

3 Essential Confidence Boosters:

1. Create an environment

The first step is to create an environment that does not encourage negative feelings about your learning. If people are embarrassing you for making mistakes when learning something new, then you have the wrong kind of people in your life! Never tolerate a teacher, a pupil, or a colleague that will belittle you for trying to improve yourself! The first step towards feeling more confident, in this case, is to surround yourself with an understanding group of people, like fellow learners and English teachers, who will see your mistakes as steps towards becoming a masterful user of the English language. Give yourself the space to make mistakes, mistakes are steps towards improvement.

learning new language
Learning New Language

2. Look silly before looking Professional

The second step is to accept the fact that you have to look silly before you can look professional! It is absolutely essential to remember that no one starts as a professional. Everyone starts as being bad at something before they can become good at something. Feeling embarrassed is perfectly normal. You, and every single adult learner, will feel silly or ashamed for not knowing something. And that is perfectly okay. You have to feel silly before you can feel good! The silly and embarrassing feelings will pass, and we are here to help you through it! Keep persisting, persevere, and know that you are building yourself up towards competency. It just takes time!

learning new language
Learning New Language

3. Tangible forms of evidence of Progressing

The last step is to give yourself tangible forms of evidence that you are progressing and improving your English language abilities. In a classroom, if you have a good teacher, they will make sure that all their learners are aware of how much progress they are making. You will receive marks, praise, and feedback from a teacher who will keep track of what you are doing. If you are an independent learner, you can produce marks for yourself! Find activities that you will do on a regular basis. Just like in a classroom, and make sure you keep a record of the fact that you did those activities.

Sometimes the way you feel about your progress contradicts the reality: you might feel like you are making no progress at all, when in fact, you are steadily learning. A physical mark or tangible record of this fact will help your mind see the reality of your progress and make you a more confident speaker of English.

By Thomas Marais

Thomas is a native English speaker from South Africa, who graduated cum laude and uses his honors bachelor’s degree in the Humanities to provide professional English tutoring to children and adults. He is a TEFL certified teacher and teaches teach both children and adults at any language level.

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Myths About Learning English: Faellis Wollard

When learning a new craft, naturally we tend to take all the advice we can get. Learning English is no exception. But could it be that somewhere along your English learning journey, you might’ve run with some not so true ideas? While having as many resources available at your disposal, to finally get that fluency and pronunciation you so desire, is great. It is possible that you might be entertaining ideas about learning English that are myths. Let’s discuss three myths about learning English that could be holding you back from reaching your full potential.

English learning

Myth #1 – High English level= Effective communication

It’s easy to believe that the higher the English level, the easier it should be to get a clear message across. However, this often proves untrue because of one key factor; attitude. For a lot of high-level English learners, the fear of being judged causes them to hyper focus on the correctness of what they’re trying to communicate instead of the clarity of their message. This being the reason why lower-level English learners who are not afraid to embrace mistakes, can communicate their message with more clarity and effectiveness.

Tip

  • Instead of focusing on yourself and how you sound, focus on the person with whom you wish to communicate and the message you wish to make clear.

Myth #2 -It’s necessary to move to an English-speaking country

 Undoubtedly, moving abroad to immerse oneself in the language and culture of an English country could be an awesome resource. Needless to say, it is not an option that every English learner can actively explore; for various reasons, such as having responsibilities where they currently reside, not wanting to leave family and friends behind or simply not having the budget for it. I’m sure you’ll find relief in knowing it’s also NOT necessary. You can make English learning a lifestyle without going to live abroad.

Tip

  • Use the resources you do have available, such as English learning communities with like minded people who also wish to sharpen their skills.

Myth#3 – Grammar is not important

No, Grammar is not the key to learning English and communicating effectively. It’s no secret that grammar is not the most fun part of it either. It can seem boring and tedious to have to go over rules that admittedly sometimes seem to not make sense. However, combined with the other areas of English Learning, grammar is an excellent tool to achieve fluency and effective communication. So, don’t be so quick to kick grammar to the curb!

             

Tip

  • Grammar is another resource. It will help you in achieving your goals of Learning and communicating in English like a champ.

So, there you have it, three English learning myths debunked. Surely everyone’s experience is different, but that’s the beauty of it. This is the key to do what’s best for you with the resources you have available and you will be on your way to success!

Faellis Wollard

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Writing the perfect business email in English

To whom it may concern –

Sending an email in the modern era is more casual and convenient than it has ever been before. Making plans with friends and keeping in touch with loved ones from across the world is only a few button presses away. But there exists a clear line between personal and business emails, a line that needs to be defined.

Writing the perfect business email may seem like a daunting and frightful task, but fear not. Addressing official recipients does not require a pocket-sized thesaurus (although I’d imagine it would certainly help!). One of the most important considerations when sending emails that are more official in nature is the language used. Slang words, colloquialisms and inside-jokes should be avoided at all costs. A note of formality is something that should be foremost. Politeness is key!

email
Writing the perfect business email in English

Professionalism is something that transcends language. Ensure that mentality is reflected throughout any business email you may send. Address the recipient with their full name and title, ensure you have signed off with your full name and credentials. Be concise, informative. Do not beat around the bush, this email ought to have a clear and defined purpose. This ideal should be reflected in the basic outline of any formal email:

  1. Subject
  2. Greetings
  3. Main Text
  4. Signature

And of course, check thoroughly for any grammatical and spelling errors.

Tonally, it is important to remain neutral. Do not let the subject matter sway you, emotionally. Allowing that to seep into the language you use and the emails you send can be quite problematic. You could potentially come across as hot-headed and extremely unprofessional.

This sort of neutrality and formality is all indicative of the unspoken law of Corporate email. Personal emails have a completely different set of standards and etiquette. Would you speak to the Queen of England in the same way you would speak to a childhood friend?

Yours sincerely,

Sadun Chamira Perera, B.Eng

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Taking the TOEFL or IELTS exam? 5 reasons to consider a test preparation course

If you’re planning to take TOEFL or IELTS exam, maybe you’ve wondered, “Do I really need to take a test preparation course before my exam? Can I get a good score just by studying on my own?” It’s possible to get a good score studying alone, but there are several reasons a test preparation course might be worth your time!

1. You’ll improve faster with more feedback

There are several TOEFL and IELTS preparation books on the market with practice exam questions and answers. Working through these questions and checking your answers can be a good way to study on your own, especially for the reading and listening sections of the exams. But what if you don’t understand some of the answers in the book? And what about the practice questions for the writing and speaking sections? A test preparation book can’t give you feedback on your writing and speaking. This is where a test preparation course is very helpful. In a course, you’ll be able to ask your instructor questions when you don’t understand, saving you a lot of time and frustration. Your instructor can also review your answers to the speaking and writing practice questions. Your instructor’s feedback will help you know what you’re doing well and how you can improve.

2. You’ll know what to focus on while preparing for the TOEFL or IELTS exam

You know that to keep improving your language skills, regular English practice is a must—and there are so many exciting ways to practice English! But when you’re preparing for the TOEFL or IELTS exam, some methods of practicing are better than others. For example, watching a popular film in English can be a great way to develop English listening skills, but it’s not so helpful for the TOEFL. This is because popular films usually don’t have a lot of academic vocabulary and phrases, but the TOEFL is full of them! To make the most of your practice time, you need to focus on the knowledge and skills required for the exam you’re taking.

A TOEFL or IELTS preparation course gives you exactly this—specific English practice for success on the exam. Your instructor can recommend specific exercises and activities based on your abilities that will help you increase your score in as little time as possible.

3. You’ll have accountability

Studying on your own can be great, but let’s admit it…sometimes it’s difficult to stay motivated! We all have times when we don’t feel like opening a book or sitting down to write another essay. A test preparation course can help you commit to preparing for the exam. Your instructor will expect you to attend class and complete assignments. He or she will be there to encourage you. And if you attend a class with other students, they can be great source of encouragement and support, too. If you’re not sure that you can motivate yourself to practice and study consistently on your own, a course can make all the difference!

4. You’ll gain confidence for taking the TOEFL or IELTS exam

If the thought of taking the TOEFL or IELTS exam makes you nervous, you’re certainly not alone. Thankfully, a little nervousness can actually enhance your abilities! Too much anxiety, however, can hurt your score and make the test a negative experience. If you’ve successfully taken a test preparation course, you’ll know that you’ve practiced and studied consistently, completed high quality exercises and activities, and received useful feedback from your instructor along the way. You’ll also be familiar with the exam format, including how long you have to complete each section and the types of questions you’ll be asked. This should help calm your fears as you approach the exam and give you the confidence you need to do your very best on test day.

5. You’ll be putting your best foot forward

Your TOEFL or IELTS exam score is important. Universities have strict score requirements, so even a small improvement in your score can be the difference between a university acceptance or rejection. You want to “put your best foot forward”—in other words, you want to give universities the best possible information about yourself. You’ve worked hard to develop your English skills, so you owe it to yourself to make sure that your TOEFL or IELTS exam score reflects all of your hard work. A test preparation course can help you do this in all the ways listed above. So, if you know that the TOEFL or IELTS is in your future and you like what you’ve read here, sign up for a preparation course and get ready to ace your exam!