CategoryGrammar

“Cut out all these exclamation points.  An exclamation point is like laughing at your own joke.”

– F. Scott Fitzgerald

What do you think about exclamation marks, those little ! points we use instead of full stops when we want to add emphasis in our writing?

Do you use them in your own writing? How often are they used in your first language?  Do you agree with Fitzgerald?  Let me know in the comments below.

At, On, and In

Today’s post is a bit shorter than usual, but I hope you’ll find it useful. I’d like to show you a simple diagram I use to teach the prepositions of time.

The prepositions of time are at, on, and in.  We use these prepositions when talking about events in the past, discussing future plans, and making arrangements.

When I take German lessons, I find prepositions very confusing, so I understand how hard this can be.  Thankfully, in English, we have an easy way to remember which is correct. Look at the diagram below:

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For, Ago, and Since

Today I’m going to look at three small words used to talk about the past. A lot of my students make mistakes when using for, ago and since when they talk about past events and actions. I think this is partly because the German ‘seit’ and English ‘since’ are false friends – they sound similar, but are not used in exactly the same way.

Let’s start by looking at three different answers to a question I hear all the time. ‘How long have you lived here?’

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How Much or How Many?

Do you want your English to sound more natural? Learning whether to ask ‘how much’ or ‘how many’  will help you to sound fluent.

Nouns in English fall into two categories: Countable and Uncountable.

It’s easy to tell the difference – just think about their names!  Is it possible to count the item out, one at a time?  It’s a countable noun. Is it impossible to count, and has to be measured by weight, size, or in some other way?   It’s an uncountable noun.

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