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Speak English Now Podcast: Learn English | Speak English without grammar.
12 minutes | Jul 23, 2021
#180 Listening In The Background
Welcome to the Speak English Now Podcast, your resource for practicing your English speaking and listening. You will also learn about lifestyle and culture, language, vocabulary, and how to learn English more effectively. Transcript: Hi, everybody! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently. In this episode: I’ll be talking about passive listening, or in other words, listening in the background. Later on, we’ll practice conversation skills with the powerful Question & Answer technique. Ok, let’s get started! In the language industry, there’s an approach called passive listening. This means playing some English in the background while performing other tasks. In theory, you’re learning because the brain is always learning, no matter how. Interesting, huh? You just need to play some English while you’re cleaning, jogging, surfing the Internet, etc. Well, although this approach may be appealing to many of you, here’s the bad news: It doesn’t work as a whole system for developing a complete fluency in English. The main drawback is that when we need to learn new content, our brain needs to pay attention, to be active. So, in an ideal world, we would be 100% focused all the time while listening: We’d pay attention to every tiny detail: vocabulary, pronunciation, intonation, etc. However, as you may already know, idyllic things are sometimes hard to achieve. If you need perfect conditions every time you listen: for example, feeling rested, motivated, in a quiet place, then you will never start listening. What you need is a compromise. It’s ok to lose concentration from time to time. Here’s my suggestion: For new content, try to maintain your concentration as much as possible. However, when you’re repeating the same content, you don’t need to focus 100% of your attention anymore because, in this case, you’re just remembering and consolidating. Another aspect to keep in mind: in this case, quantity is more important than quality. It means that when you listen for two hours, and you only focus on 70% of your attention, it’s still more efficient than when you’re listening for only 20 minutes, and you succeed to focus 100%. The accumulation of hours and hours of listening, it’s what truly helps you to become fluent. Just think about children. They’re not always focused when they listen, but they always learn. My takeaway for today is: Try to listen as much as you can. Being focused is essential when you’re learning new content, but when you’re already familiar with the material, what matters the most, it’s the amount of time you spend listening. Get the full text here: SpeakEnglishPodcast.com/podcast
12 minutes | Jul 15, 2021
#179 Asking for Directions in English
Hi, everybody! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently. I'm going to talk about how to ask and give directions in English. For example, when you want to go to a restaurant, and you have to ask for directions. Next, an exclusive mini-story to improve your fluency in English. Remember that you can get the text of the episode at SpeakEnglishpodcast.com. So, let's get started. As you know, it's very useful to know how to ask for directions when you go to a place for the first time, and you're a bit lost. Okay, yes, I know that nowadays with smartphones, you can check the GPS and you don't need to ask for help anymore, but think about this: Asking for directions is an excellent opportunity to practice English. In this episode, we will see the most common expressions with some examples: All right, the best way to ask for directions is by using this expression: "Excuse me, how do I get to _?" "Could you tell me the best way to get to _?" For example, if you want to ask how to get to Times Square, you say: Excuse me, how do I get to Times Square? You could also say… "What is the quickest way to get to the movies?" "Excuse me. Where's the nearest (post office) please?" "Excuse me. I'm looking for _." And if you are very close to your destination, you could simply ask: "Where is the hotel?" If you get lost, just ask this simple question: "Where exactly am I?" Okay, great. Now let's see how to give directions. Here are some useful phrases for giving directions on the street: TURN LEFT TURN RIGHT GO STRAIGHT AHEAD An example: "Sorry, what is the quickest way to get to the city center? "It is easy. Go straight ahead and then turn right. They can also tell you to TAKE the first, second, or third, street, for example. Let's look at the same example: "Excuse me, could you tell me the best way to get to the city center?" "It is easy. Go straight ahead and take the second street on the right." (END OF THE EXTRACT). Get the transcript here: https://speakenglishpodcast.com/asking-for-directions-in-english/
12 minutes | Jul 8, 2021
#178 English Pronunciation Practice with Tongue Twisters
Hi, everybody! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently. Speaking English is way easier than it seems! You just have to use the right material and techniques. In this episode, I'll learn some new tongue twisters in English to help you with your English pronunciation. And with a mini-story, you will improve your fluency. A mini-story is very simple but very powerful. I ask easy questions on purpose so that you can simulate a conversation. It's like talking with another person in English. Before we get started, go to my website SpeakEnglishPodcast.com to get the transcript. It's free! Ok. Let's start! So, do you remember what a tongue twister is? It can be a difficult phrase that we say quickly, usually because of a sequence of almost similar sounds. For example, "Peter Piper picked a pickle of pickled peppers." Many people use tongue twisters to speak clearly, including actors, politicians, etc. These allow you to practice pronunciation and agility when it comes to producing sounds in English. So today, we are going to practice English pronunciation with new tongue twisters. Are you ready? Let's go! I will start saying each tongue twister slowly, and then I'll go faster. At first, they may seem very difficult, so make sure you have the text in front of you to be able to follow it better. Ok. So, I will say it very slowly: 1. I saw a kitten eating chicken in the kitchen. Are you ready to speed it up? (Say it faster.) I saw a kitten eating chicken in the kitchen. Ok. Even faster! I saw a kitten eating chicken in the kitchen. I hope you're having fun. Let's continue! 2) I thought I thought of thinking of thanking you. Ok. Now I'm gonna speed it up! (say it faster.) I thought I thought of thinking of thanking you. Ok. Even faster! I thought I thought of thinking of thanking you. 3) A big black bug snoozed on a big black rug. Ok. Say it faster! A big black bug snoozed on a big black rug. Even faster! A big black bug snoozed on a big black rug. Read the transcript here: SpeakEnglishPodcast.com
12 minutes | Jul 1, 2021
#177 Learning English during the summer vacation (rep)
Hi, everybody! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently. Today, I’m going to show you how you can improve your English-speaking skills during the summer. Later, we’re going to practice listening and speaking with a funny mini-story. Let’s get started! Summer is here, and it seems like everyone has planned their holidays already. But how about you? Have you thought about improving your English during the summer holidays? If you still don’t have a plan. Don’t worry. I have some ideas. In fact, it’s really simple. All you need this summer is your cell phone to listen to my Speak English Now Podcast or my English premium courses. Now I’d like to suggest some places you could spend your summer holiday, especially if you’re on a tiny budget. Find an air-conditioned coffee shop in your neighborhood. Enjoy your drink while you listen to your favorite English show. Go to the mall or fast food restaurants It’s the perfect environment where you can listen to some English lessons. Perhaps you won’t be 100% focused on what you’re listening to, though, you’ll still be learning a lot. I’m telling you this because I enjoy going to the local mall, especially in summer and winter. It’s usually quiet; there’s free AC. (air conditioning) and I often carry around my laptop. Spending time away from my desk helps me to concentrate better. But it’s not all about drinking coffee and shopping. Just like me, you might consider going to the gym more often! Where I live, it’s almost impossible to enjoy any outdoor activities in summer. Also, when you’re at the gym, try listening to your favorite English lessons. You’ll love it! Ok, last but not least: You need to relax. Go to the beach. Not only to get a nice tan but also to take your English to the next level.
14 minutes | Jun 25, 2021
#176 The Benefits of learning English as an adult
Are there any benefits to learning English as an adult? There are many. Let's take a look at some in this episode. Hi, I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. Speaking English is way easier than you think. You just need to use the right materials and techniques. Today I am going to talk about the benefits of learning English as an adult. And the truth is that there are many, and some of them are surprising. And with a mini-story, you will practice your spoken English. I'll ask you lots of questions that you'll have to answer right away. It's like having a conversation with another person in English. Before we get started, go to my website SpeakEnglishPodcast.com to get the transcript. It's free! Ok. Let's start! #1 It is an excellent exercise for our brain. Many times we go to the gym to tone our muscles. We also try to lose weight to be ready for the beach in summer. We don't always succeed, but that's another story. :) In the same way, learning a new language is like sending our brain to the gym. We stimulate it with all sorts of new sounds, words we didn't know, grammar, expressions, and other elements. This mental exercise is very healthy, as we help our brain to stay active. Many experts recommend learning a language when we are older to maintain our cognitive ability. It helps us to improve our memory and concentration. Imagine the number of words you end up learning—all of them new. And then, you have to learn how to use them according to context, sentence order, etc. All this new information accumulates in an orderly fashion in our brain and is ready to be used. This process improves our ability to remember all kinds of things. Moreover, we learn to concentrate better. For example, when you listen to this episode, your concentration level is higher than when you listen to an episode in your mother tongue. So, it's a great thing! #2You learn a new culture and a new way of thinking. Every language is necessarily linked to culture. This implies customs, ways of understanding life, traditions, habits, values, and history. I find discovering a new culture fascinating. It serves to learn something new and contrast and reevaluate the culture in your own country. In addition, you learn to look at things from a new perspective. This can help you to be more original and creative in your daily life. #3 Improve your self-esteem. Yes, learning a new language as an adult and conversing with native speakers is an excellent boost to your self-esteem. You feel better because you have achieved something that many people think is impossible. I remember my first conversations in Spanish. I made mistakes, and my vocabulary was limited, but what a joy to talk to people from other countries! That's always a good feeling. #4 Make more friends. Can you imagine making friends from other countries and cultures while speaking their own language? This is a compelling reason to study a language. Human relationships are vital, and they help you consolidate what you have learned. So, I suggest you practice your English with people from English-speaking countries. Remember that now, with the internet, you can use any video call app to communicate with anyone in the world. #5 Get a better job. Finally, learning a second language allows you to improve your resume and your chances of finding a good job. In an increasingly globalized world, knowing at least a second language is crucial. Knowing a new language is positive, as you come across as someone dynamic and capable of learning as an adult. Ok, that’s it for now, but before we continue… I have something important to tell you. I want you to learn English 3 times faster, and that's why I created a video course. Go to SpeakEnglishPodcast.com and get my video course for FREE!
12 minutes | Jun 17, 2021
#175 Are you too old to learn English?
Hi, I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. And I am here to help you speak English fluently with no grammar and no textbooks. In this episode, let’s find out if you are too old to learn English? Is it too late to learn a language? Is it possible to learn English as an adult? I'm going to answer these questions. - In the second part, we are going to meet Tom and his adventures to learn English. Before we get started, go to my website SpeakEnglishPodcast.com to get the transcript. It's free! Ok. Let's start! Some time ago, a 95-year-old student from Greece sent me an email. He wanted to tell me how my method helped him learn English. He is learning English and listens to this podcast. The truth is that I admire people who don't make excuses. And that's what inspired me to do this episode. There is a widespread belief that if you don't start learning a language when you are very young - ideally as a child - it is practically impossible to learn it. Some even bash those who are studying a language, saying things like: "You're wasting your time and your money!" "Unless you go to the country, you'll never learn the language!" Well, I'm here to tell you that's a myth. You can learn English as an adult and become fluent in English. Many of my students have learned English at an advanced age and are perfectly able to speak it fluently. Children indeed seem to learn their mother tongue effortlessly. The younger you are, the easier it is to create new brain connections and consequently learn anything quickly. However, studies show that the brain never loses the ability to learn. For me, the determining factor is the attitude, not aptitude. Attitude refers to how we feel about something. Aptitude, relates to the ability to do something. A bad attitude - that is, being negative, complaining, or making excuses - will not help you learn anything. It is crucial to have a good predisposition to learn. In other words, be more positive and less negative. Sometimes this bad attitude leads to limiting oneself. For example, some people think: "I am not good at learning languages." "I am too old for this." Certainly, this attitude does not help at all. On the other hand, children usually have a good attitude. For example, they never say things like: "But there are so many words I don't know yet!" "I make a lot of mistakes! People are going to laugh at me!" “I will never speak English! I'd better not even try!" In reality, kids don't care how long it takes, how many mistakes they make, or whether they mispronounce a word. In fact, kids hardly get frustrated when they don't get something right the first time. They just keep trying. They don't set mental limits for themselves as we adults do. So, I recommend you to be inspired by the attitude of the 95-year-old student I mentioned before. And because I want you to learn English 3 times faster, I have created a video course. Go to SpeakEnglishPodcast.com and get my video course for FREE.
13 minutes | Jun 11, 2021
#174 English Common Phrasal Verbs with TAKE
Listen to a new episode of Speak English Now Podcast, your favorite material for practicing your spoken and heard English. You will also learn about lifestyle and culture, language, vocabulary, and how to improve your English more effectively. Transcript: Hi, I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. And I am here to help you speak English fluently with no grammar and no textbooks. Today we are going to continue learning new phrasal verbs. This time with the verb TAKE. And with a point of view lesson, you will learn grammar in context without memorizing any boring rules. I’ll tell you a story several times from different grammar points. I can change the tense or the person. And like that, you will learn grammar in context. Ok. Let’s start! Most English learners tend to become overly concerned with how to learn phrasal verbs. A phrasal verb is just a verb and a particle. For example, “take after.” There are thousands of phrasal verbs. Sometimes they may be confusing. Also, each phrasal verb can have multiple meanings. Ok, this scenario doesn’t seem very encouraging, and the million-dollar question is: How can you learn all those phrasal verbs? Here’s the good news: You need to learn the most common ones. In other words, what people use most of the time. So, let’s learn some common phrasal verbs with the verb TAKE: 1. Take After somebody To resemble a parent (looks or behavior) “I take after my mother so much that people think we are sisters.” 2. Take something Apart It means to disassemble or to separate the parts of something so that they are not together. “I’m going to have to take apart the remote control to clean it well.” 3. Take something Back This phrasal verb means to say that you don’t really mean what you’ve said or written. “I take it back. You’re not the worst person I’ve ever met. But you are the second-worst person I know.” 4. Take Down It means to separate the pieces of a structure or write something down. Examples: “We’ll have to take down the cupboard if we want to paint the walls.” “I’ve been trying to get back to you, but I took your number down incorrectly.” 5. Take On It means to accept a job, responsibility, or to hire somebody. Examples: “I can’t take on any more responsibilities; I’m too overstressed.” “By the end of the year, we plan to take on 100 more people in our company.” 6. Take over It means to gain control. Examples: “My boss told me to take over the project because my colleague was inefficient.” “When my father retired, my brother took over the business.” 7. Take somebody Up on something This phrasal verb means to accept an offer. Example: “-You’re always welcome to visit us.” “-Thank you, I’ll take you up on that the next time I come to Vienna.” Ok, so today, we have learned some phrasal verbs with the verb take. My advice is to learn phrasal verbs in context and never memorize them, especially because many of them have several meanings. [END OF THE EXTRACT] Get the FULL-TEXT in PDF here.
14 minutes | Jun 4, 2021
#173 English Phrasal Verbs with GIVE
Listen to a new episode of Speak English Now Podcast, your favorite material for practicing your spoken and heard English. You will also learn about lifestyle and culture, language, vocabulary, and how to improve your English more effectively. Transcript: Hi, I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. And I am here to help you speak English fluently with no grammar and no textbooks. Today we are going to talk about phrasal verbs with the verb give. Many of you have asked for a new phrasal verbs episode, so I am sure that you are excited about it. Apparently, everyone wants to learn new phrasal verbs. And with mini-story, you will improve your fluency. I will ask you many questions that you will need to answer right away. It’s like speaking English with another person. But before I get started, I wanted to thank you for listening to my podcast. It’s been over four years since I released the first episode, and since then, I’ve received a lot of support. And because I want you to learn English 3 times faster, I have created a video course. Visit my website SpeakEnglishPodcast.com and get my video course for FREE. Ok, let’s get started! #1 To give something away It means to give something for free as a gift or donation. Examples: “They give away a free chocolate bar for every $100 you spend in the supermarket.” “Tina gave her old clothes away when she lost weight.” #2 To give oneself or somebody else away It means to show where somebody is or what they are doing when they are trying to keep this a secret. Or to unintentionally reveal something about yourself that you don’t want anyone to know. In short, to give somebody away means to betray them. Examples: “Mia smiled, but her voice gave her away.” “Tom gave away classified information to the competition.” #3 To give in It means to accept that you are defeated, to surrender. Or, in some cases, to give in means to finally agree to what someone wants after refusing for some time. Examples: “After being surrounded, the enemy gave in.” “My son insisted so much that I buy a cell phone, I finally gave in.” #4 To give out We use this phrasal verb to say that something stops working correctly or becomes weak. Examples: “After running for 30 minutes, my legs finally gave out.” “The students wouldn’t listen, so his patience finally gave out.” #5 To give something over to somebody It means to give responsibility for something to somebody. Examples: “Our boss gave most of his work over to his assistant.” “The assistant gave herself over completely to her work.” #6 To give up This phrasal verb means to stop trying to do something, to surrender. Examples: “Because of health problems, he was forced to give up his job.” “Everybody knows my mom never gives up.” #7 To give somebody up It means to allow someone to be captured by the police. Or surrender oneself to the police. Examples: “When he was surrounded, the criminal gave himself up.” “The private detective gave the criminal up to the police.” “She remorsefully gave herself up to the police.” Let’s listen to the phrasal verbs we learned today: Give something away Give someone away Give in Give out Give up Give somebody up Give something over to somebody Get the FULL TEXT here: SpeakEnglishPodcast.com
10 minutes | May 28, 2021
#172 Getting Back to Normal after the Pandemic
Listen to a new episode of Speak English Now Podcast, your favorite material for practicing your spoken and heard English. You will also learn about lifestyle and culture, language, vocabulary, and how to improve your English more effectively. Transcript: Hi, everyone! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently with no grammar and no textbooks. Today let’s talk about how the lockdown has affected the way we interact with other people. Are we ready to get back to normal after the pandemic? And with a point of view lesson, you will learn grammar in context without memorizing any boring rules. I’ll tell you a story twice from different grammar points. I can change the tense or the person. And like that, you will learn grammar in context. Please, visit SpeakEnglishPodcast.com to get the transcript. It’s free. After a year of living practically on the couch eating takeout while watching series on Netflix, maybe you should consider whether you’re turning into a hermit. Takeout is prepared food packaged to be consumed away from its place of sale. So, what’s a hermit? A hermit retires from society and lives in solitude, usually for religious reasons. And after a year without leaving the house, many people are in danger of becoming hermits. Although when someone lives alone and deliberately avoids other people, we call that person a recluse. I’ve always been an extrovert. But being stuck at home for so long, with no contact other than my family, is becoming a bit of an issue. And you know, I was certain that extroverted people would have a tough time during the lockdown. But it turns out that even people who were never at home are finding any excuse not to leave the house. It seems that we have adjusted to this new lifestyle, and it’s going to be hard to get back to normal. And how about getting back to work? In my opinion, the pandemic killed the traditional workplace, and I am curious how companies will deal with this situation. And I have a feeling that remote work can be mutually beneficial. Because according to one study, telecommuters work 1.4 days more per month, and that’s more than three additional workweeks per year. And let’s face it, while working in the office has some advantages, like meeting new people, very few employees want to go back to the office. What about you? How do you feel about all this? Do you want to get back to the office, or do you prefer to stay at home and work remotely? Before I move on to the next section, go and get the transcript of this episode at SpeakEnglishPodcast.com/podcast
10 minutes | May 21, 2021
#171 Different Ways to Greet Someone in English
Listen to a new episode of Speak English Now Podcast, your favorite material for practicing your spoken and heard English. You will also learn about lifestyle and culture, language, vocabulary, and how to improve your English more effectively. Transcript: When was the last time you saw people shaking hands? I can’t remember either, maybe in a movie. Hi, I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. And I am here to help you speak English fluently with no grammar and no textbooks. Today, I will talk about different ways to greet someone while avoiding physical contact as much as possible. And with mini-story, you will improve your fluency. I will ask you many questions that you will need to answer right away. It’s like speaking English with another person. The situation has changed quite a bit since last year. It has impacted the way we interact with other people drastically. Nowadays, instead of shaking hands, we tend to wave from a distance. Today we will look at some ways of saying hello that have become popular over the last year. Let’s start! 1. Elbow bump. The idea is to use your elbow to touch the other person’s elbow. The elbow is the joint we have in the middle of each arm. I consider this kind of greeting a bit absurd since you end up making physical contact in another way, but you avoid contact with your hands. However, it is easy to touch your elbows with your hands. For example, you might touch your elbows when crossing your arms. So, it’s better not to have any contact at all. 2. Saying hello with your feet. Yes. I’ve seen some people use their feet to say hello. And it looks strange, but the first time I saw it, I thought it was hilarious. The idea is to make each other’s feet collide. I guess it’s safer than the elbow bump, but it requires some skill to stay balanced. For a couple of seconds, you need to stand on one foot. So perhaps for older people, it’s not the best idea. 3. High five from a distance. See, this seems more logical to me. You raise your right hand and pretend you are high-fiving. There is no contact whatsoever. However, imagine you will greet someone, and you high-five in the air, but the other person doesn’t and stares at what you’re doing. It’s a bit embarrassing. 4. Military-style salute. As you can imagine, it is the typical salute that militaries give. Although we do it in a more relaxed and less abrupt way. When I greet someone on the street, I raise my hand and say, “hello.” I do it quickly, and it’s more natural that way. I don’t like the elbow or foot greeting. Before I move on to the next section, go and get the transcript of this episode at SpeakEnglishPodcast.com/podcast Do you know how you can help me? You can share the podcast with your friends and family. And tell them to go to SpeakEnglishPodcast.com to get my free mini-course. That would mean a lot to me. Thanks.
10 minutes | May 14, 2021
#170 Video Conference Vocabulary in English
Listen to a new episode of Speak English Now Podcast, your favorite material for practicing your spoken and heard English. You will also learn about lifestyle and culture, language, vocabulary, and how to improve your English more effectively. Transcript: Hi, everyone! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently with no grammar and no textbooks. In this episode: I will talk about video conferencing apps and the most common vocabulary and expressions used in English. Then, with a short point of view lesson, you will practice grammar in context. There’s no need to memorize anything, don’t worry. Before we start, make sure you get the transcript of this episode at SpeakEnglishPodcast.com/podcast As you know, the Internet allows us to communicate very easily. With the current situation, working from home has become customary. Teleworking is when you work from an off-site location using the Internet. And of course, to be able to communicate, we have to do it through dedicated apps like Zoom, FaceTime, Google Meet, Skype, etc. Let’s see some vocabulary related to apps for video conferences. I will use the expressions from the Zoom app, but they are more or less similar to any platform: Well, to use the Zoom app, you need an account. Usually, you visit the website and create a new account. Then you download the app to your computer or smartphone. You install it and run it. All you have to do is follow the instructions. Usually, you enter your username and password and follow the instructions. Sometimes it is necessary to select the audio and camera, but only the first time. The environment where people meet is usually called a videoconference room, or simply a room. Sometimes it’s also called a meeting. Okay, now you have everything set up. You need to join a meeting, but before that, you need an invitation. The invitation is only a link, and when you click on it, you can join the meeting. Other times the host will give you a number and password instead of a link. By the way, we call the people who attend Zoom meetings attendees or participants. You also have the option to host a meeting. This implies that you create the meeting and that you invite people to access the room. As a host, you have special permissions to control the other attendees. We can say that the host controls everything. The host usually sends an invitation to the others by email. Okay, so imagine you are in a meeting. You have to take into account two very important options. First, you have to learn how to turn audio and video on or off. It is very common to start talking and have the audio turned off. An even worse situation is to leave the audio on and make noises or say something inappropriate. You also have the option of typing text in the chat. If you are shy, this is the best option. Well, finally, when we want to leave, don’t forget to exit the meeting! So, we’ve learned quite a bit of specific vocabulary. You are now an expert in group videoconferencing 🙂 Remember that on my website speakenglishpodcast.com you can subscribe to my FREE mini-course and find out how you can learn English 3 times faster. Do you know how you can help me? You can support this podcast by sharing it with your friends and rating it with five stars. ⭐️⭐️⭐️ ⭐️⭐️ Get the full transcript here: SpeakEnglishPodcast.com/podcast
11 minutes | May 7, 2021
#169 Movie expressions and vocabulary in English part2
Hi, everyone! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently. Today we are going to continue to talk about idioms and specific vocabulary related to movies in English. And with a point of view lesson, you will learn grammar in context without memorizing any boring rules. I’ll tell you a story twice from different grammar points. I can change the tense or the person. And like that, you will learn grammar in context. Please, visit SpeakEnglishPodcast.com to get the transcript of today’s episode. Before we start, let’s remember the 5 expressions you learned in the last episode. Get the show on the road Means to begin an activity or journey. To kick off a show, or kickoff To kick off a show means to start a performance or the first performance among many others. Popcorn movie It’s a movie to watch just for entertainment. Live up to the hype If a movie lives up to the hype, it is as good as the public anticipates. Sell outIf tickets are sold out, it means that all available tickets for a movie, concert, etc., have been sold. Now let’s learn some new vocabulary and expressions: 1. To make a clown of yourself Clowns are usually funny and entertaining people who do all sorts of things to make people laugh. I’m scared of clowns, and I’m sure many other people are too. So, if you make a fool of yourself, you’re doing something that makes people laugh without meaning to. It means you make a mistake that makes people laugh, maybe you stutter or even forget what you were going to say. So, we use this expression when someone appears foolish or someone who knows very little. Examples: 1. Jack was so worried about making a clown of himself, he got so nervous that he ended up calling off his performance. To call off means to cancel an event or agreement. “He should not have tried to call his ex, he made a clown of himself.“ 2. To be in the limelight The expression to be in the limelight comes from an old practice from the theater scene. Limelight was a bright white light made by heating oxygen and hydrogen and placing a piece of lime into it. It was used for stage lighting. But what does it mean? If you are in the limelight, you are in the public eye. Therefore, people will be interested in your personal life. They will want to know who you hang out with and what you do in your free time. As a result, the paparazzi and reporters are likely to surround you often. Examples: “Tom tried avoiding the press as much as possible, but he was in the limelight all the time because of his new blockbuster movie.” “Many people love being in the limelight, but I get nervous on stage.” 3. To crave the limelight Well, we have already seen what it means to be in the limelight, but let’s find out what it means to crave the limelight. To crave something means to feel a strong desire for something or someone. Therefore, if you crave the limelight, it means that you really like to be the center of attention. Celebrities, politicians, but also regular people sometimes crave the limelight. Example: “My friend wasn’t a person who craved the limelight until her book became a bestseller. That’s when she got used to the attention.” 4. Break a leg This expression comes from the world of theater. Actors were superstitious because they believed that saying “good luck” would actually bring them bad luck, so people started using the expression “break a leg” instead. Examples: “Break a leg!” I shouted to my sister before the beginning of the play. “You’re so talented you don’t need luck but make sure you break a leg!” Ok, that’s it for today, but let’s first go over the expression we have learned today. To make a clown of yourself To be in the limelight 3. To crave the limelight 4. Break a leg Before I move on to the next section, go and get the transcript of this episode at SpeakEnglishPodcast.com/podcast Do you know how you can help me? You can support this podcast by sharing it with your friends and rating it with five stars. Click here to learn how to rate the podcast with 5 stars on the Podcasts app.
13 minutes | Apr 30, 2021
#168 Movie idioms and expressions in English
Hi, everyone! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently. Today we are going to talk about idioms and specific vocabulary related to movies in English. And with a mini-story, you are going to improve your fluency. I'll tell you a story while asking you many questions that you have to answer right away. It's like talking to another person in English. Please, visit SpeakEnglishPodcast.com to get the transcript of today's episode. And follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. Let's get started! As I said today, we will look at some specific words and idioms related to movies in English. Let's start! 1. Get the show on the road When someone tells you to get the show on the road, they urge you to start doing something. They want you to start, even if there are some mistakes and things that hinder your progress. Examples: "Let's get the show on the road, or we'll be late." "We're finally ready to get the show on the road." "It's about time we got the show on the road!" "Come on, the fans are waiting outside, and we must get the show on the road!" 2. To kick off a show, or kickoff In show business, to kick off a show means to start a performance. We also use this expression to refer to the first performance among many. A kickoff celebration is a party that celebrates the beginning of something. You can simply call this party a kickoff. Examples: "The advertising campaign is ready to kick off the show." "Kickoff will be at 10 o'clock prompt." "Tom is coming to the kickoff tonight." 3. Popcorn movie Do you enjoy eating popcorn? But what's a popcorn movie? When you want to watch a movie just for entertainment, you will usually watch a popcorn movie. Although they are called popcorn movies, you don't necessarily need to eat popcorn while watching them. Let's say that this kind of movie will not give you a new perspective on life. Many of the summer blockbusters are popcorn movies, and the great thing is that you can watch them with friends or family. A blockbuster is a very successful product like a movie or a book that makes a lot of money. For instance, a Hollywood studio releases many movies in search of a blockbuster. Here are some popular popcorn movies you have already watched: Transformers (2007), Spider-Man (2002), Mr. & Mrs. Smith (2005), Mission: Impossible (1996), Forrest Gump (1994), Batman Begins (2005), The Fast and the Furious (2001), etc. 4. Live up to the hype If a movie or a show is up to the hype, it means there is enough interest in it. Movie critics and bloggers become excited about something by generating a lot of buzz or hype. Generally speaking, it's hard to live up to the hype, but the best movies can generate many expectations before they are released. Examples: "I watched that movie you recommended last week, and it definitely lived up to the hype. I loved it! "I am happy to say that your performance lived up to the hype." 5. Sell out We can use the expression to sell out in several ways. But if tickets are sold out, it means that all available tickets for a movie, concert, etc., have been sold. And also when we want to buy something in a store or on the Internet. If they are sold out, they are no longer available. Examples: "We sold out all the movie tickets in the first couple of hours." "My favorite T-shirt sold out everywhere." Before we continue, I want to give you a useful tip on how to understand movies in English. First of all, you should keep in mind that movies are meant for native speakers and are full of expressions and phrasal verbs. And yes, actors usually talk fast. And the reason they speak so fast is that they have memorized their lines. I believe that the biggest problem English students have is that they don't listen enough. First you have to build a good foundation by listening to many hours of content with clear audio and good pronunciation. Over time, understanding movies will become easier. Before I move on to the next section, go and get the transcript of this episode at SpeakEnglishPodcast.com/podcast
10 minutes | Apr 22, 2021
#167 New English Words added to the dictionary - part2
Hi, everyone! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently. Last week we started to learn some words like YouTuber, to Facebook, to Skype, etc. Today, we will learn some new English words added to the dictionary in the last decade. You'll also improve your English grammar in context with a point of view lesson, like that you won't have to memorize any boring rules. Before I get started, remember to get the transcript at SpeakEnglishPodcast.com/podcast It's free! This way, you listen and read at the same time if you find it necessary. Let's get started! As I said today, we will continue learning some more of the English words added to the dictionary in the last decade. Let's start with the first word: 1. Crowdfunding Introduced in June 2015. According to the Oxford Dictionary, crowdfunding is the practice of financing a project or venture by raising money from many people who contribute a relatively small amount, usually through the Internet. For example, a music band can use crowdfunding to produce their next album. They can ask fans to contribute $10 to the project. And in return, they will receive a copy of the album when it's ready. 2. E-bike Introduced in June 2019. According to the Oxford Dictionary, an e-bike is an electric bicycle. E-bikes are a great idea because it allows people to commute without getting to work sweaty, and you can take longer rides. 3. Router Introduced in March 2011. What's a router? A router is a device that allows communication between the local home network - like the computers, smartphones, tablets, printers, etc.- and the Internet. Every time we have internet problems, we reboot the router. It is also advisable to place the router as high up as possible and make sure no objects are too close to the device. 4. Kombucha (kuhm-boo-chuh) Introduced in June 2013. According to the Oxford Dictionary, kombucha is a beverage produced by fermenting sweet tea with a culture of yeast and bacteria. I must confess that I haven't tried this beverage yet. But I've been told it's great for digestion so, maybe I'll give it a try in the near future. 5. Cyber- Introduced in December 2010. "Cyber" is a word we use to describe a person, thing or idea that is part of the computer and information age. Here are some examples: cyberculture, cyberpunk, cyberspace, cyber sales, cyber economy, cyberattack. 6. CD Introduced in March 2012. CD means several things, but one of the international use is a Compact Disc. I realized that CDs were no longer relevant ten years ago when I bought a MAC computer. At that time, Apple stopped making computers with a CD player. So, I had to buy a separate CD player from Amazon. I'm curious if you still have CDs at home. That's it for now. Let's continue with a fun point of view lesson. But before we do that, remember to get the transcript at SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. It's completely free! Do you know how you can help me? You can share the podcast with your friends and family. Tell them to go to SpeakEnglishPodcast.com and get my free mini-course. That would mean a lot to me. Thanks. Let's move on to the next section. I'll tell you a short story more than one time. Every time, I'll change a grammar point. I can change the tense or the person. This way, you'll notice the changes in context. Let's start! First, we'll listen to the story in the third person in the past tense: Tom started an online business on a low budget. He had an old laptop and was experiencing constant Internet cuts. His router was practically obsolete, so he needed a new one, yet he couldn't afford it. Additionally, Tom was afraid of losing some of his most important documents, so he stored them on a CD. Certainly, the cyber world was becoming frustrating, so Tom had to disconnect for a few hours. So, he took his e-bike and rode around the city. After a while, he spotted a mysterious café. He went inside and ordered a new drink called kombucha. After drinking this beverage, Tom wanted to move to a tropical island and drink kombucha all day and every day. Since he had no money, he initiated a crowdfunding campaign explaining how he wanted to move to an island. Surprisingly, he raised $1 million in one day. So, Tom now lives on a tropical island, and all he does is drink kombucha. Let's listen to the story one more time in the first person in the future tense. I'm Tom, and I'm thinking of starting an online business on a low budget. I imagine that I will have an old laptop and will experience constant Internet cuts. My router will be practically obsolete, so I'll need a new one, but I won't be able to afford it. I will be afraid of losing some of my most important documents so that I will save them on a CD. Surely, the cyber world will become frustrating, and I will have to disconnect for a few hours. I'll take my e-bike and go for a ride around the city. After a while, I'll spot a mysterious coffee shop. I will walk in and order a new drink called kombucha. After drinking this beverage, I will want to move to a tropical island and drink kombucha all day and every day. But first, I will need some money. So, I will start a crowdfunding campaign explaining how I want to move to an island. Surprisingly, I will raise a million dollars in one day. So, I will live on a tropical island, and all I will do is drink kombucha. Ok, it’s the end of this short lesson. As you can see, just by changing a point of view of the story, you can learn grammar intuitively. It is one of the techniques that I use in my premium courses. I recommend you to take a look at: SpeakEnglishPodcast.com/courses
13 minutes | Apr 15, 2021
#166 Popular words in English added to the dictionary
Hi, everyone! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently. Today we are going to look at some trendy words. These words have been added to the dictionary in the last decade. And with a mini-story, you are going to improve your fluency. I'll tell you a story while asking you many questions that you have to answer right away. It's like talking to another person in English. Please, visit SpeakEnglishPodcast.com to get the transcript of today's episode. And follow me on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, etc. Let's get started! As I said today, we will look at some words added to the dictionary in the last decade. These are trendy words, and I'm sure most of them sound familiar to you. Let's start with the first word: 1. Jeggings The word was introduced into the dictionary in 2015. Jeggings are a blend of jeans and leggings. When they first came out, I was fascinated by these pants. They are the most comfortable thing ever in my opinion, and yet they look so much like jeans. 2. YouTuber The term was introduced into the dictionary in 2016. YouTube appeared in 2005 and since then, millions of people have been uploading videos on the platform on a regular basis. I started creating weekly videos in 2012, but it wasn't until 2016 that the word was added to the dictionary. According to the Oxford Dictionary, a YouTuber is a person who uploads, produces, or appears in videos on YouTube. 3. LOL The word was introduced into the dictionary in 2011. Though this word is still popular, we have actually been using it for many years. So what's LOL? It's an abbreviation of laughing out loud or laugh out loud. The word abbreviation means a shortened form of a word or phrase. 4. Facebook The term was introduced into the dictionary in 2018. Did you know that we have used Facebook so many times that the verb to facebook has emerged? So “to facebook” means to spend time using the social media website or app Facebook. 5. Skype The word was introduced into the dictionary in 2014. Before other apps like Zoom or FaceTime existed, Skype was the most popular app on the Internet for video calls. According to the Oxford Dictionary, to skype means to have a spoken conversation with (someone) over the Internet using Skype, typically also viewing by webcam. Get the transcript here: SpeakEnglishpodcast.com
13 minutes | Apr 5, 2021
#165 Easter in the USA -ESL
Hi, everybody! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently. Today I'll talk about something more festive. I'll talk about Easter and how Americans celebrate this holiday. And with a fun mini-story, you'll improve your English fluency by answering many questions in English. Before we get started, I just wanted to say hi if you are new here. And if you are a long-time listener, I want to thank you for supporting this show by sharing it with your friends and family. Ok, let’s start! Whenever Easter comes, everywhere I go, I see chocolate eggs and Easter bunny cakes. But what do we celebrate on Easter? Easter is a Christian holiday celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. The New Testament describes the resurrection occurring on the third day after his burial following his crucifixion by the Romans on Calvary around 30 AD. Americans spend this holiday with friends and family, and some attend special services held in churches on Easter. And while not all Americans observe the holiday from a spiritual point of view, Easter is certainly one of the most celebrated holidays in the States. And if there's one thing people love doing during the holidays, it's eating. Let's take a look at the 3 most popular dishes at Easter. Hot Cross Buns These are typical Easter food. It is a sweet bread seasoned with nutmeg, flavored with currants and apricots, and covered with a lemon glaze. Stuffed Leg of Lamb Americans also enjoy a stuffed leg of lamb. A delicious recipe, yet very easy to make. With parsley, garlic, bacon, and red wine. Honey Butter Ham Another very representative dish for this holiday is the honey butter ham. This recipe is simple and is prepared in the oven or a slow cooker. And how about the colored eggs and the Easter Bunny tradition? Typically, people start dying hard-boiled eggs in a variety of colors the night before Easter Sunday. These eggs are left for the Easter Bunny on Saturday night. The Bunny comes and hides them all over the house. So when the children wake up on Easter Sunday, they get excited looking for the eggs and the Easter baskets filled with goodies. The idea of the Easter Bunny giving candy and eggs is said to have originated in Germany during the Middle Ages. Pennsylvania Dutch settlers brought the rabbit to the United States in the 18th century. Another fun fact about the Easter holiday is that Easter and Halloween often compete for the highest candy sales every year. In some years, Americans buy more candy the week before Easter than the week before Halloween. How interesting. Right? Read the transcript here: SpeakEnglishPodcast.com
14 minutes | Mar 31, 2021
#164 Different Types of Doctors in English - part2
Hi, everybody! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently. This week we are going to continue talking about the different types of doctors in English. And with a fun mini-story, you will effectively improve your English fluency. Before we get started, make sure you get the transcript on my website SpeakEnglishPodcast.com/podcast Ok, let's start! Last week we started talking about the different types of doctors in English. We saw that a general practitioner or family doctor treats common health problems. We also learned that an optometrist is an eye doctor and that a dentist treats teeth and gums' problems. Now let's continue learning the different types of doctors in English. 1) When we have skin, hair, or nail-related problems, we visit a dermatologist. If you have nasty red rashes on your body, quickly make an appointment with a dermatologist. So a dermatologist is a doctor who treats problems related to skin, nails, and hair. Nowadays, more and more people choose to see a dermatologist whenever they have a skin condition such as acne, sensitive skin, a rash, etc. It is always better to trust a specialist and not to experiment on our skin. 2) If you have children, you should take them to a pediatrician. A pediatrician's office is always very colorful and a very child-friendly environment. Therefore, pediatricians are physicians who take care of infants, toddlers, children, and teenagers. 3) What if you have a broken heart? Do you make an appointment to see a cardiologist? Unfortunately, a cardiologist can't fix your broken heart. But they will cure any cardiovascular disease. A cardiologist is a heart doctor. 4) And if you have an accident, you must see an orthopedic surgeon. An orthopedic surgeon deals with the skeletal system. Any broken leg or broken bone or anything that's wrong with your skeletal system, an orthopedic surgeon is going to fix it for you. As people get older, they have many problems in their knees or their hands or even arthritis. So all of these things are taken care of by an orthopedic surgeon. 5) If you are a woman, you need to see a doctor who focuses on the female reproductive organs from time to time. We call this type of doctor a gynecologist. There is also the obstetrician who works in a particular area of gynecology that focuses on childbirth. 6) What if you are a man? Do you also go to see a gynecologist? No. No. Only women go to a gynecologist. Men should see a urologist. A urologist is a doctor who deals with urinary tract infections or urinary problems. A urologist deals with the male reproductive system or male reproductive organs. So if you have any problems with the urinary tract or the male reproductive system, you see a urologist. 7) There is another type of doctor called a neurologist. A neurologist is a doctor who studies and treats diseases of the nerves. While the doctor who performs surgery on the human brain is called a neurosurgeon. So a neurologist is a doctor who deals with any nerve-related problem. But if you have brain surgery, you go to a neurosurgeon. Well, these are the types of doctors or physicians we have here. There are a large number of doctors, so I've picked the most common ones. Read the transcript here: SpeakEnglishPodcast.com
10 minutes | Mar 25, 2021
#163 Different Types of Doctors in English
Hi, everybody! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently. This episode is going to be interesting because we will talk about doctors in English. And I'll tell you about a surgery I had last week. You'll also improve your English grammar without memorizing any boring rules. Before I get started, remember to get the transcript at SpeakEnglishPodcast.com This way, you listen and read at the same time if you find it necessary. Let's start. Today I would like to tell you a bit about my experience of having to undergo surgery for the first time. Although you probably didn’t notice my absence last week, I was in the hospital for a few days after having gallbladder surgery. I always had difficulty eating some foods, and I didn't know why. Finally, after many tests, the doctor told me he had good news and bad news. I wanted to know good news first. The good news was that he had found the cause of my digestive problems. I had gallstones in my gallbladder. And the bad news was that I had to have my gallbladder removed altogether. But I was looking forward to the surgery. And since I wanted to avoid getting overly nervous before the procedure, I decided to concentrate on work. I doubled my workload before the surgery so that you wouldn't miss any of my weekly episodes. And on the day of the surgical procedure, I packed a suitcase with all the things I thought I needed while in the hospital. It is always wise to be prepared. But in the end, I didn't need much of it because I spent most of the time sleeping. Now I’m happy to be back home. The intervention was a success, and I feel great, I was even able to start working on a new episode. But enough about me, let's talk about the different types of doctors in English. Let's start with the general practitioner. What’s a general practitioner? If you have a health problem, you usually go to a general practitioner. For example, if you have a cold or a stomach ache, you see a general practitioner. We also call this type of physician a family doctor. What if you have a terrible toothache? Do you go to your family doctor? Of course not. In that case, you should make an appointment with a reputable dentist as soon as possible. I know many of you don’t like going to the dentist, but I have a visit every six months, and that helps to prevent major complications. So a dentist is a doctor who treats problems related to teeth and gums. Well, what if you have a problem with your vision? What do you do? If you have a problem with your eyesight, an eye infection, or anything related to your eyes, you should see an optometrist. An optometrist is an eye doctor. Get the transcript here: SpeakEnglishPodcast.com
12 minutes | Mar 16, 2021
#162 Learning English with Riddles part #2 ESL
Hi, everybody! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently. Today we are going to learn English in a fun way. You will learn new English vocabulary through fun riddles. I will introduce you to some popular riddles and ask you to guess the correct answer. If you don't know what a riddle is, don't worry because I'll explain it to you. And with a point of view lesson, you will learn grammar without memorizing any boring rules. Many of you send me messages telling me that you listen to my podcast in the car, walking, or doing other things. That's great because you are incorporating learning into your lifestyle, not the other way around. That way, you spend more time listening and learning. The idea is always to accumulate many hours of listening for you to internalize the language. By the way, it would make me very happy if you shared my website with your friends. Tell them to go to SpeakEnglishPodcast.com and subscribe to my free mini-course. All right. In today's episode, you will improve your English in a fun way with some fun riddles. You'll have to guess the answer to each riddle. Are you up for it? Don't worry; they're not complicated. Come on, it's gonna be fun :) But first, what's a riddle? A riddle is a type of poem that works like a puzzle. They describe something and sometimes use words with double meanings. First, I'll tell you a riddle, and then I'll wait 10 seconds to give you time to answer. But don't worry. If you need more time, you can pause the audio. Get the transcript here: SpeakEnglishPodcast.com
9 minutes | Mar 11, 2021
#161 English Vocabulary - Vegetables in Urban Gardens ESL
Hi, everybody! I am Georgiana, your English teacher and founder of SpeakEnglishPodcast.com. My mission is to help you speak English fluently. In today’s episode – I’m going to tell you how you can get vegetables without going to the supermarket. And I’m not talking about magic 🙂 – In the second part, you will learn grammar without memorizing any boring rules. Are you a new listener? I recommend that you get my free video course at speakenglishpodcast.com. You will learn how to acquire more vocabulary, how to learn grammar but without memorizing anything, how to learn deeply, how to speak automatically and how to maintain yourself motivated in the long run. Very well. Let’s start! Some things only happen in cities. Interesting things. One of them is urban gardens, If you have an urban garden, you can grow your own veggies if you live in a city. I’m talking about tomatoes, celery, broccoli, etc. It is an exciting option if you do not want to buy them directly from the supermarket or if you want to make sure that the vegetables are pesticides free. Urban gardens appeared as a fad, but the truth is that they are consolidating in many cities. A good phrase to use in this case is: “they are here to stay”. That is, it is not just a fad. Where can we find these gardens? Locations vary. For example, there are large gardens in the suburbs of many cities. These are family gardens that produce all kinds of veggies. We can also find urban garden projects in schools, where they have an educational function. I find it very helpful for children to understand that tomatoes are not “manufactured” in the supermarket but rather grown in the soil. On the other hand, many apartments have a terrace, and people have some vegetables in small earthen containers. Some take advantage of the rooftop. There is usually quite a lot of space available. I guess in general you can save money, but it’s easy to overspend. You need tools, fertilizers, seeds, substrates… and a lot of patience. In any case, it’s an outdoor hobby that is usually rewarding. However, there are some disadvantages. The most important is that the contamination affects the plants. All contaminating particles fall on the surfaces. Many of them are metals such as lead, mercury, or cadmium. And I don’t believe anyone likes the idea of eating a tomato with these kinds of metals in it. Then there is the expense of the water, which can be significant. Nowadays, the water bill can go up quite a bit because there are more and more taxes. So… Would you like to have an urban garden? If you already have one, you can tell me about it in the comments section. Read the transcript here: SpeakEnglishPodcast.com
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