How to improve your writing — September 25, 2017

How to improve your writing

writing

Want to make your writing more natural, clear and organised but find it a real challenge to do so? Perhaps the following suggestions will be of help.

First of all, make it a point to think in English when building your idea. Don’t make the common mistake of constructing an idea in your native language and then expect yourself to translate it in English. It simply will not work! What if though you lack vocabulary? Take time to acquire say a new word a day so that you can expand your vocabulary bank. In time, you will be surprised at how many words you have made yours and are now ready to use.

Then, fix in your mind this simple acronym K.I.S.S. It stands for Keep it simple and short (or stupid.) It means that your idea should be kept short:
•Avoid long periods that may confuse the reader.
•Stick to the point and be relevant.
•Avoid unclear or ambiguous language.

In other words, put yourself in the shoes of your reader and ask yourself what effect your writing would have.

 

The students’ worst nightmare: the verb GET — September 18, 2017

The students’ worst nightmare: the verb GET

Did you get back from your holidays?
I hope you got some rest and got rid of stress, because it’s time to plan on getting some serious work.
Above all, you need to get used to getting up early again and getting on/off public transport vehicles.
Getting to work on time: that’s a miracle!
But, don’t get upset if you can’t manage to get back to the perfectly planned routine you had before you got away from it.
Give yourself a chance not to get stressed out again, immediately after a good relaxing holiday.
Whenever you can, just get a minute to daydream about what really makes you happy!

How many expressions did you get? I hope you got all of them!
If you didn’t, don’t worry we can help you!
Please contact us!

get

Stranded prepositions — September 11, 2017

Stranded prepositions

A stranded preposition normally comes on its own at the end of a sentence. For instance, we say:

Who is that man that you were talking with?

Is this the movie that you keep talking about?

What did you say Fiona is good at?

Many students find it difficult understanding the function of a preposition at the very end of a sentence. This happens because normally prepositions precede nouns and we are used to this scheme. In the examples, though, they all come last. Why? And above all how can one learn where and when to use them?

Well, it is not so difficult. Follow me!

If you try and retrieve the original affirmative sentence, it will sound something like:

I was talking with my friend John.

I keep talking about a thriller.

Fiona is very good at repairing computers.

As you can see in the affirmative versions the verbs and the adjective are followed by a preposition (with, about, at). So, if you use them in indirect speech, please, do not forget to include the prepositions, as they form part of the verbs/adjective.

For a complete list of verbs/adjectives/nouns followed by prepositions, please contact us!

preposizioni blog

How to get the most from your English reading — September 4, 2017

How to get the most from your English reading

Ever wonder why although you have been studying English for quite some time, you still find it difficult to express your ideas and thoughts effectively, that is fluently and clearly? There may be several factors to consider. Perhaps, you are simply shy and afraid of making embarrassing mistakes. To be honest, that should be your last concern! Even native speakers make mistakes…but you don’t realise it. Another more serious factor could be that you lack vocabulary or are unsure what verbs collocate with which prepositions or nouns. How can you acquire a deeper understand of how words collocate? By making the most of your reading!

Yes, effective reading skills are closely connected with improved speaking skills. Reading provides you the new words and collocations you need to use in your speaking. When you read a passage and come across a new word, make it a point to record it in your vocabulary notebook. But don’t stop there.

See how that word is used to build an idea or sentence. Remember, ideas and thoughts are built differently in English compared to your native language. Then, make a note of expressions you like and promise yourself to use them when speaking. The more reading you do, the more words and fixed collocations you will find and be then able to include in your speaking.

reading