Making Small Talk and Catching Up with a Friend or Acquaintance

Have you ever run into a friend or acquaintance whom you hadn’t seen in weeks, months, or even years? What do you say to them?  What do you begin to talk about? Let’s talk about useful phrases for making small talk with a friend after you haven’t seen them for awhile! We make small talk differently depending on the person and the situation. Today, we are going to look at vocabulary you can use to … Read the article and watch the video lesson

Using “Used to” and “Would” for Repeated Past Actions and Habits

Podcast #5 - Using Used To and Would For Repeated Past Actions and Habits

During the holiday season, many people start to reminisce about the ways they spent the holidays when they were children. As I mentioned in my last podcast, we usually use the simple past tense to tell stories about the past. When we are talking about repeated actions or habits that happened often in the past or situations that no longer exist, we can also use two other verb forms: “used to” and the modal verb … Read the article and watch the video lesson

How to Use the Past Perfect for Clarity When Telling a Story

Podcast #4 How to Use the Past Perfect for Clarity When Telling a Story

When we’re telling a story about an event that happened in the past, we usually use the simple past tense to tell most of the story. However, sometimes we forget a detail, or we want to refer back to something that happened before the main event to give extra details.  This is when the past perfect becomes useful. Most non-native English speakers are confused about how to use the past perfect because it isn’t used … Read the article and watch the video lesson

How to Use the Present Continuous and the Simple Present with a Future Meaning for Arrangements and Schedules

Podcast #3 How to Use the Present Continuous and Simple Present with a Future Meaning for Arrangements and Schedules

As I mentioned in my last podcast, English does not have a future tense. You learned how to use “to be going to” and “will” to talk about decisions and predictions. In today’s podcast, you’ll find out how to use the present continuous and the simple present with a future meaning. We use the present continuous for plans or arrangements that we do not expect to change or that are unlikely to change in order … Read the article and watch the video lesson

Introducing Yourself to New People and Making Small Talk

There are lots of possible situations where you’ll meet new people: at a party, in the student lounge, at a conference, on the train, while traveling, just to name a few. What do you usually say when you meet someone new? How do you introduce yourself? Do you find it difficult to continue the conversation with them after exchanging names? Even though the language we use to make small talk with new people may appear … Read the article and watch the video lesson

How to Use the Future Forms “to be going to” and “will” for Decisions and Predictions

Podcast #2 How to Use the Future Forms To Be Going To and Will for Decisions and Predictions

Unlike other languages, English does not have a future tense. Instead, we have future forms: the modal verb “will,” the construction “to be going to,” the simple present, and the present continuous can all be used to express future meaning! In this podcast, you’ll learn how to use “to be going to” and “will” to talk about decisions and predictions. You’ll understand how “to be going to” is used to talk about decisions made before … Read the article and watch the video lesson