December 31, 2010

Phrasal verb: stick to (something)

"stick to (something)"

Meaning: continue doing something, limit yourself to one particular thing

Example: Your car will maintain a new look if you stick to a regular detailing regimen.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
break in
not care for (someone/something)
drop (someone/something) off
find (something) out
get back at (someone)

Idiom: sort of

"sort of"

Meaning: rather; somewhat

Example: We have to eat. I feel sort of hungry.


Last week's idioms:
be on the road
chow down
get out of hand

December 28, 2010

Idiom: keep (one's) fingers crossed

"keep (one's) fingers crossed"

Meaning: hope for the best

Example: I took the IELTS exam last Saturday. Results will be released in a few days. I'm keeping my fingers crossed!


Last week's idioms:
be on the road
chow down
get out of hand

December 27, 2010

Phrasal verb: hang up

"hang up"

Meaning: end a phone call

Example: Oh no! I was not able to give him the best route to the hotel before he hung up.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
break in
not care for (someone/something)
drop (someone/something) off
find (something) out
get back at (someone)

Idiom: have (something) down pat

"have (something) down pat"

Meaning: know/understand something completely and thoroughly

Example: You'll be taking the IELTS test soon. Be sure that you have it down pat.


Last week's idioms:
be on the road
chow down
get out of hand

December 24, 2010

Phrasal verb: get back at (someone)

"get back at (someone)"

Meaning: retaliate, take revenge

Example: I won't be surprised if she gets back at you for breaking her heart.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
pick (something) out
sort (something) out
take (someone) out
work (something) out

Idiom: get out of hand

"get out of hand"

Meaning: become out of control; become badly managed

Example: The security situation got out of hand when the protesters stormed through the palace gates.


Last week's idioms:
pull (someone's) leg
run down
sooner or later
a tightwad
with bells on

December 23, 2010

Phrasal verb: find (something) out

"find (something) out"

Meaning: discover

Example: Mateo and Lia tried to keep their relationship from their friends, but Sam found it out.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
pick (something) out
sort (something) out
take (someone) out
work (something) out

December 22, 2010

Phrasal verb: drop (someone/something) off

"drop (someone/something) off"

Meaning: take someone/something somewhere and leave them/it there

Example: Today, I have to drop my daughters off at school before I go to work.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
pick (something) out
sort (something) out
take (someone) out
work (something) out

December 20, 2010

Phrasal verb: break in

"break in"

Meaning: force entry to a building

Example: Burglars broke in last night and stole our coffee maker.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
pick (something) out
sort (something) out
take (someone) out
work (something) out

Idiom: be on the road

"be on the road"

Meaning: be traveling

Example: Try to call Cindy every morning. You won't be able to contact her during the afternoon because she'll be on the road.


Last week's idioms:
pull (someone's) leg
run down
sooner or later
a tightwad
with bells on

December 19, 2010

5 Tips for Evaluating and Challenging Ideas in IELTS Writing

Hello. Today you're going to read our tips when you encounter IELTS writing (task 2) questions that require you to evaluate and challenge ideas. Read on:

1. When you need to write about two distinct points of view, you should be able to:
- show both views
- assess the merits of each side
- dispute the view that you disagree with and substantiate the ideas you agree with via evidence and examples

2. It should be noted that you don't have to entirely defend one of the views. You could formulate your own view.

3. At all times, you must always state your view clearly, using reasons and examples. This applies whether you agree or disagree with a particular view.

4. If, on the other hand, if you don't entirely agree or disagree with the given views, remember to be explicit as to which parts of the views you agree with and which you disagree with.

5. In other words, always analyze the arguments for and against, then provide support for the views you side with and challenge those you dispute.

That would be all for now for our tips in IELTS writing. Next week a new series of IELTS speaking tips would be shared to you.

Cheers. :)

Other IELTS writing tips:

December 17, 2010

Phrasal verb: work (something) out

"work (something) out"

Meaning: make a calculation

Example: Be sure to work out the cost of our services before we proceed to paint the house.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
get (something) back
hang out
look into (something)

Idiom: with bells on

"with bells on"

Meaning: very eagerly; with the feeling that one will have a very good time

Example: I'll be at Fiona's birthday party with bells on!


Last week's idioms:
get (one's) wires crossed
have/has ('ve/'s) got
in time
a low blow
nuts

December 16, 2010

Phrasal verb: take (someone) out

"take (someone) out"

Meaning: pay for someone to go somewhere with you

Example: Charles took me out for dinner. We then strolled around the park.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
get (something) back
hang out
look into (something)

Idiom: a tightwad

"a tightwad"

Meaning: someone who is very frugal and unwilling to spend money unnecessarily

Example: Jude is a tightwad because he didn't contribute a single centavo to our Christmas party fund.


Last week's idioms:
get (one's) wires crossed
have/has ('ve/'s) got
in time
a low blow
nuts

December 15, 2010

Phrasal verb: sort (something) out

"sort (something) out"

Meaning: organize, resolve a problem

Example: We need to sort our used clothes out so we could send them to our favorite charitable institution this Christmas season.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
get (something) back
hang out
look into (something)

Idiom: sooner or later

"sooner or later"

Meaning: eventually

Example: Learn the business now. Sooner or later you'll be taking charge.


Last week's idioms:
get (one's) wires crossed
have/has ('ve/'s) got
in time
a low blow
nuts

December 14, 2010

Idiom: run-down

"run-down"

Meaning: in poor condition; needing repair

Example: Why did you buy our neighbor's car? It looks really run-down.


Last week's idioms:
get (one's) wires crossed
have/has ('ve/'s) got
in time
a low blow
nuts

December 13, 2010

Phrasal verb: pick (something) out

"pick (something) out

Meaning: choose

Example: I'd pick out the high end car wax at the shelf.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
get (something) back
hang out
look into (something)

Idiom: pull (someone's) leg

"pull (someone's) leg"

Meaning: tease someone by trying to make her/him believe something that's exaggerated or untrue

Example: Don't believe anything that Mike has said. He could be pulling your leg.


Last week's idioms:
get (one's) wires crossed
have/has ('ve/'s) got
in time
a low blow
nuts

December 12, 2010

3 Tips for Providing Solutions to a Problem in IELTS Writing

Hello. Now we share with you some IELTS writing tips for questions that require you to provide solutions to a problem.

1. Write about the problem or the relevant causes of the problem. Always provide reasons and examples.

2. In this type of essay, not only should you discuss your solutions to the problem or cause of the problem, but you should also write about the results or the effects of your solutions.

3. Keep in mind that the solutions you suggest should address the problem/causes of the problem, then explain how your solutions could have practical implications in life. Also, give examples for the consequences you have mentioned.

Tips when you evaluate and challenge ideas in IELTS writing would be posted next week.

Cheers. :)

Other IELTS writing tips:

December 10, 2010

Idiom: nuts

"nuts"

Meaning: crazy

Example: Are you nuts? No one ever goes to that place. It's very dangerous.


Last week's idioms:
wishy-washy
be on the go
chow
drag (one's) feet

December 9, 2010

Phrasal verb: look into (something)

"look into (something)

Meaning: investigate

Example: Team A is assigned to look into the theft reports in Central City.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
work out
break something
calm down
drop by/in/over
find out

Idiom: a low blow

"a low blow"

Meaning: a big disappointment

Example: Francis got upset. Losing all his money at the casino was a low blow for him.


Last week's idioms:
wishy-washy
be on the go
chow
drag (one's) feet

December 8, 2010

Idiom: in time

"in time"

Meaning: not late

Example: Fred's car joined the Manila Auto Show just in time.


Last week's idioms:
wishy-washy
be on the go
chow
drag (one's) feet

December 7, 2010

Phrasal verb: hang out

"hang out"

Meaning: spend time relaxing (informal)

Example: We could either visit Sharon or just hang out at my place.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
work out
break something
calm down
drop by/in/over
find out

Idiom: have/has ('ve/'s) got

"have/has ('ve/'s) got

Meaning: have/has

Example: Ricardo's got a Porter Cable 7424XP which he uses for car detailing.


Last week's idioms:
wishy-washy
be on the go
chow
drag (one's) feet

December 6, 2010

Phrasal verb: get (something) back

"get (something) back

Meaning: receive something you had before

Example: Giovanni got his special detailing brushes back from Sonny.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
work out
break something
calm down
drop by/in/over
find out

Idiom: get (one's) wires crossed

get (one's) wires crossed

Meaning: be confused or mistaken about something

Example: I visited Jill yesterday and discovered that she lives just across the library. Jack however claims that she stays in the next town. I guess Jack just got his wires crossed.


Last week's idioms:
wishy-washy
be on the go
chow
drag (one's) feet

December 5, 2010

3 Tips for Comparing and Contrasting Opinions in IELTS Writing

Hello. Now we're going to share some tips whenever you have to compare or contrast opinions, evidence, and implications in IELTS writing task 2. Here they are:

1. When you're asked to compare and contrast opinions or ideas, you have to discuss the similarities and differences between the said opinions or ideas.

2. Write clear and logical arguments. Do this by using phrases that signal contrast (e.g. "on the other hand"), similarities (e.g. "in the same way"), and effects/results (e.g. "as a result").

3. When the question asks you to discuss two different views and give your own opinion, choose any of these methods for your essay: (a) write something to the effect that you accept one of the views and disagree with the other, (b) write to the effect that you reject both views and that your view is the correct one, or (c) write to the effect that you accept the two views as correct, but only to a certain degree.

Next week you'll get to read our tips for problem-solution types of questions in the IELTS writing module.

Cheers. :)

Other IELTS writing tips:

December 3, 2010

Phrasal verb: find out

"find out"

Meaning: discover

Example: Bob doesn't want to tell us where he hid the box. How can we find out?


Last week's phrasal verbs
pay for (something)
sleep over
take (something) out

December 2, 2010

Phrasal verb: drop by

"drop in/by/over"

Meaning: come without an appointment

Example: If you need microfiber towels for your car detailing project, feel free to drop in/by/over.


Last week's phrasal verbs
pay for (something)
sleep over
take (something) out

Idiom: drag (one's) feet

"drag (one's) feet"

Meaning: delay; take longer than necessary to do something

Example: You should have waxed that car a few hours ago. Why are you dragging your feet?


Last week's idioms
pull an all-nighter
run down
(Someone's) made his/her own bed; now let him/her lie in it.
tight-fisted
used to

December 1, 2010

Phrasal verb: calm down

"calm down"

Meaning: relax after being angry

Example: Everyone needs to calm down. We will receive our water rations within the hour.


Last week's phrasal verbs
pay for (something)
sleep over
take (something) out

Idiom: chow

"chow"

Meaning: food

Example: Have you tried the chow in the new canteen across the street?


Last week's idioms
pull an all-nighter
run down
(Someone's) made his/her own bed; now let him/her lie in it.
tight-fisted
used to

November 30, 2010

Phrasal verb: break (something) down

"break (something) down"

Meaning: divide into smaller parts

Example: Paolo broke the car detailing project down into five main tasks.


Last week's phrasal verbs
pay for (something)
sleep over
take (something) out

Idiom: be on the go

"be on the go"

Meaning: be very busy (going from one thing or project to another)

Example: Cathy doesn't seem to get tired. She's been on the go all day.


Last week's idioms
pull an all-nighter
run down
(Someone's) made his/her own bed; now let him/her lie in it.
tight-fisted
used to

November 29, 2010

Phrasal verb: work out

"work out"

Meaning: be successful

Example: His jeweling technique really worked out fine when he detailed the paint of the Honda CR-Z.


Last week's phrasal verbs
pay for (something)
sleep over
take (something) out

Idiom: wishy-washy

"wishy-washy"

Meaning: uncommitted; without an opinion of one's own

Example: Tell her how you really feel. Don't be so wishy-washy about it.


Last week's idioms
pull an all-nighter
run down
(Someone's) made his/her own bed; now let him/her lie in it.
tight-fisted
used to

November 28, 2010

6 Tips for Presenting and Justifying an Opinion in IELTS Writing

Today's set of tips would dwell on IELTS writing task 2, particularly with regard to those questions that require you to present and justify an opinion.

1. Identify what your own opinion is. An outline could help you organize your thoughts.

2. Always provide examples to support your opinion.

3. Make use of various paragraphs to separate your points and ideas.

4. Spend more time in task 2 than in task 1.

5. When writing your introduction, never use the words and phrases you see in the question. Always paraphrase.

6. Note the word count. Your essay should have at least 250 words.

Next week, you'll receive some tips when you have to compare and contrast opinions, evidence, and implications in the IELTS Writing Module.

Cheers. :)

Other IELTS writing tips:

November 26, 2010

Idiom: used to

"used to (+ V)"

Meaning: an action that was true in the past but is not true now

Example: Jimmy used to bring his car to detailing shops. He now details it himself.


Last week's idioms:
have (one's) hands full
in the red
live and let live
nuke
over (one's) head

November 25, 2010

Phrasal verb: take (something) out

"take (something) out"

Meaning: remove from a place or thing

Example: Can you please help me take these boxes out to the garage?


Last week's phrasal verbs:
hang on
look forward to (something)

Idiom: tight-fisted

"tight-fisted"

Meaning: very frugal; unwilling to spend money unnecessarily

Example: I'm not going to be surprised if Harry declines to foot the bill. He's been known to be tight-fisted.


Last week's idioms:
have (one's) hands full
in the red
live and let live
nuke
over (one's) head

November 24, 2010

Phrasal verb: sleep over

"sleep over"

Meaning: stay somewhere for the night (informal)

Example: Michael's too drunk to drive. I guess your group just has to sleep over tonight.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
hang on
look forward to (something)

Idiom: (Someone's) made his/her own bed; now let him/her lie in it

(Someone's) made his/her own bed; now let him/her lie in it.

Meaning: Someone has caused his/her own problems; he/she will have to solve them himself/herself.

Example: Cherry really hurt the feelings of the crowd after she spoke on stage. She now has to deal with some negative publicity. She's made her own bed; now let her lie in it.


Last week's idioms:
have (one's) hands full
in the red
live and let live
nuke
over (one's) head

November 23, 2010

Idiom: run-down

"run-down"

Meaning: not well; weak; fatigued

Example: Is Nina getting enough sleep? She looks run-down.


Last week's idioms:
have (one's) hands full
in the red
live and let live
nuke
over (one's) head

November 22, 2010

Phrasal verb: pay for (something)

"pay for (something)

Meaning: be punished for doing something bad

Example: That thief will pay for stealing our coffee maker.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
hang on
look forward to (something)

Idiom: pull an all-nighter

"pull an all-nighter"

Meaning: study or work all night without getting any sleep

Example: I pulled an all-nighter at work. I'll just be resting whole day today.


Last week's idioms:
have (one's) hands full
in the red
live and let live
nuke
over (one's) head

November 21, 2010

7 Tips for Describing a Process or Object in IELTS Writing

Hello. When you're confronted with a question where you're asked to describe a process or object in IELTS writing task 1, remember the following:

1. To describe an object, mind its appearance, its main parts, and how it works. Avoid concentrating on the minor details.

2. If you find that making comparisons with other things would aid you in describing, then you could include them.

3. To describe a process, analyze the diagram so you'd be able to comprehend each stage of the process.

4. Time words and phrases help when you mention each stage. Use them to your advantage.

5. Likewise, use the passive, and present and past participle clauses in the descriptions.

6. In all cases, it is recommended that you organize your thoughts via an outline, or any technique you're familiar with, before you start writing.

7. Finally, always check if all the essential information from the picture or diagram is in your description.

Next week, we'll be starting to share some things that you should keep in mind when it comes to IELTS writing task 2.

Cheers. :)

Other IELTS writing tips:

November 19, 2010

Idiom: over (one's) head

"over one's head"

Meaning: too difficult or complicated for someone to understand

Example: His paint polishing process is way over my head. I wish he could demonstrate it again to us.


Last week's idioms:
be in and out
chicken
drop (someone) a line
for ages
get a move on

November 18, 2010

Idiom: nuke

"nuke"

Meaning: heat in a microwave

Example: Just nuke it if you feel like having hot choco.


Last week's idioms:
be in and out
chicken
drop (someone) a line
for ages
get a move on

November 17, 2010

Phrasal verb: look forward to (something)

"look forward to (something)"

Meaning: be excited about the future

Example: I'm looking forward to the opening of the new shopping mall in Pasig City.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
break down
call (someone) up
drop back
fill (something) in/out
get back

Idiom: live and let live

"live and let live"

Meaning: don't unnecessarily make things difficult; do as you wish and let others do as they wish

Example: Don't judge Nina for standing up for her team. Sometimes, you have to live and let live.


Last week's idioms:
be in and out
chicken
drop (someone) a line
for ages
get a move on

November 16, 2010

Idiom: in the red

"in the red"

Meaning: unprofitable; showing a financial loss

Example: To avoid being in the red, business owners should be vigilant with regard to unnecessary expenses.


Last week's idioms:
be in and out
chicken
drop (someone) a line
for ages
get a move on

November 15, 2010

Phrasal verb: hang on

"hang on"

Meaning: wait a short time (informal)

Example: Hang on while I lock the doors and windows.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
break down
call (someone) up
drop back
fill (something) in/out
get back

Idiom: have (one's) hands full

"have (one's) hands full"

Meaning: be extremely busy

Example: I might not be able to arrive there today. I'll have my hands full trying to finish the exterior detail of the Honda CR-V.


Last week's idioms:
be in and out
chicken
drop (someone) a line
for ages
get a move on

November 14, 2010

6 Tips for Comparing Data in IELTS Writing

Hello. It's time for another set of tips for you to improve your skills in IELTS writing task 1. We're now going to share you some tips when you compare data. Comparing data is one of the techniques that you should use to obtain high marks in IELTS writing. Here are the tips:

1. Carefully examine the data before you start writing.

2. You'd usually find that the instructions would ask you to "report on main features" and "make comparisons where relevant." With this in mind, you consequently have to select the most evident similarities and differences within the presented data.

3. It would help if you jot the features and comparisons down, and determine the sequence with which you're going to express them.

4. When you compare data, you should recognize similarities and differences. Find that part of the data that shows the main similarities and differences. It thus helps to use adverbs as well as connective words and phrases that have these effects.

5. State at all times the actual data (numbers, percentages, dates, etc.) when you make your comparison. However, be certain of its relevance to the point you are making.

6. Keep in mind that you are not expected to write down all the data you are given. State only related data that backs up your point.

Next week, you'll be learning some tips to describe a process or object.

Cheers. :)

Other IELTS writing tips:

November 12, 2010

Phrasal verb: get back

"get back"

Meaning: return

Example: I just got back from the mall. I bought some clothes.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
take (something) off
work out

Idiom: get a move on

"get a move on"

Meaning: hurry

Example: I'd like you to be early at work, so you'd better get a move on.


Last week's idioms:
There, there.
upside down
What's up?
yummy
at the eleventh hour

November 11, 2010

Phrasal verb: fill (something) in/out

"fill (something) in/out"

Meaning: to write information in blanks

Example: Kindly fill in/out the form with your name, address, email address and mobile phone number.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
take (something) off
work out

Idiom: for ages

"for ages"

Meaning: for a very long time

Example: Does Margie still live in Makati City? I haven't seen her for ages. I might pay her a visit one of these days.


Last week's idioms:
There, there.
upside down
What's up?
yummy
at the eleventh hour

November 10, 2010

Phrasal verb: drop back

"drop back"

Meaning move back in a position/group

Example: Felipe Massa's Ferrari dropped back to tenth place after a costly mistake at the third corner.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
take (something) off
work out

Idiom: drop (someone) a line

"drop someone a line"

Meaning: write to someone

Example: I think I'd have to drop a line to Sophia today. It's been some time since we have written to each other.


Last week's idioms:
There, there.
upside down
What's up?
yummy
at the eleventh hour

November 9, 2010

Phrasal verb: call (someone) up

"call (someone) up"

Meaning: phone

Example: Ask for her phone number and call her up tomorrow after your date.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
take (something) off
work out

Idiom: chicken

chicken (adjective or noun)

Meaning: cowardly

Example: Mateo won't ride that roller coaster. He's chicken / a chicken.


Last week's idioms:
There, there.
upside down
What's up?
yummy
at the eleventh hour

November 8, 2010

Phrasal verb: break down

"break down"

Meaning: get upset

Example: That guy really broke down when he found out he had left his phone at the office.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
take (something) off
work out

Idiom: be in and out

"be in and out"

Meaning: be at and away from a place during a particular time

Example: I think you better call him first before you go to his office. He could be in and out of the office for his deliveries.


Last week's idioms:
There, there.
upside down
What's up?
yummy
at the eleventh hour

November 7, 2010

6 Tips for Organizing and Selecting Data in IELTS Writing

Hello. Last week, some tips were posted to guide you with understanding and interpreting data in task 1 of IELTS writing.

To further develop your skills for IELTS writing task 1, you must organize and select your data. In other words, you have to:

1. Study the data before you begin to write.

2. Identify and focus on the most important aspects of the data.

3. Discover either the most noteworthy changes over time or the fundamental points of comparison between the given categories.

4. Formulate your description of the data around the said fundamental points, and include any pertinent subordinate points.

5. Make use of synonyms. It's always recommended that you don't quote the words used in the task and the data.

6. Also, take advantage of linking words to properly connect not only the ideas, but also the flow of ideas in your essay.

Next week, you'll be learning how to compare data - another important skill you have to manifest to make it good in IELTS writing task 1.

Cheers. :)

Other IELTS writing tips:

November 5, 2010

Idiom: at the eleventh hour

"at the eleventh hour"

Meaning: at the last minute; almost too late

Example: Their auto detailing project was finished at the eleventh hour, just in time for the transport show.


Last week's idioms:
keep/stay in touch (with someone)
live from hand to mouth
pretty (adv.)
rub (someone) the wrong way
a snap

November 2, 2010

Idiom: upside down

"upside down"

Meaning: with the bottom part on top and the top part on bottom

Example: Stack the containers upside down so they won't collect water just in case it rains.


Last week's idioms:
keep/stay in touch (with someone)
live from hand to mouth
pretty (adv.)
rub (someone) the wrong way
a snap

November 1, 2010

October 31, 2010

8 Tips for Understanding and Interpreting Data in IELTS Writing

Good day everyone. We're now going to start sharing tips with regard to IELTS writing.

Today, you'll be receiving some pointers whenever you encounter a task 1 question that would require you to understand and interpret data. Read on:

1. When you see graphs, make it a point to understand what the axes are evaluating or computing.

2. When you see bar and pie charts, always find and understand the key which provides you with info about the bars or areas.

3. When you see tables, remember to identify their key features. You do this by carefully browsing through the data supplied in the rows and the columns.

4. An outline would help you organize your thoughts.

5. Please note that you shouldn't spend more than 20 minutes on Task 1.

6. Always cite relevant supporting data.

7. Write at least 150 words.

8. It is recommended that you give yourself a few minutes to check your work.

Next week, some pointers for organizing and selecting data would be posted here.

Cheers. :)

Other IELTS writing tips:

October 29, 2010

Phrasal verb: show off

"show off"

Meaning: act extra special for people watching (usually boastfully)

Example: Jim always shows off his new magic tricks.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
figure (something) out
get away with (something)
hang in

Idiom: a snap

"a snap"

Meaning: something that's very easy to do

Example: I didn't have a hard time answering the exam. In fact, I felt that it was actually a snap.


Last week's idioms:
every other
fender-bender
get on (one's) nerves
hassle (verb)
in the black

October 28, 2010

Phrasal verb: run out

"run out"

Meaning: have none left

Example: We ran out of microfiber detergent so I had to wash the remaining towels with dishwashing liquid.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
figure (something) out
get away with (something)
hang in

Idiom: rub (someone) the wrong way

"rub (someone) the wrong way"

Meaning: irritate someone; bother or annoy someone

Example: Our neighbor plays loud music every morning. The noise sometimes rubs me the wrong way.


Last week's idioms:
every other
fender-bender
get on (one's) nerves
hassle (verb)
in the black

October 27, 2010

Phrasal verb: pay (someone) back

"pay (someone) back"

Meaning: return owed money

Example: Thanks for loaning us the money. We'll pay you back on the 31st of this month.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
figure (something) out
get away with (something)
hang in

Idiom: pretty

pretty (adv.)

Meaning: rather; somewhat

Example: That exam was pretty hard. I hope we make it.


Last week's idioms:
every other
fender-bender
get on (one's) nerves
hassle (verb)
in the black

October 26, 2010

Phrasal verb: look for (someone/something)

"look for (someone/something)"

Meaning: try to find

Example: He's looking for a new wireless keyboard for his PC.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
figure (something) out
get away with (something)
hang in

Idiom: live from hand to mouth

"live from hand to mouth"

Meaning: survive on very little money; have only enough money to pay for basic needs

Example: For many years, Rick's family was living from hand to mouth before they achieved financial success.


Last week's idioms:
every other
fender-bender
get on (one's) nerves
hassle (verb)
in the black

October 25, 2010

Idiom: keep/stay in touch (with someone)

"keep/stay in touch (with someone)"

Meaning: remain informed (about someone) / in contact (with someone) by writing, calling, sending e-mail, etc. on a regular basis

Example: Liz is now living in Canada, but we keep (stay) in touch through Facebook.


Last week's idioms:
every other
fender-bender
get on (one's) nerves
hassle (verb)
in the black

October 24, 2010

5 Tips for Classification/Matching Type Questions in IELTS Reading

Today, you'll be seeing some tips and strategies for answering matching and classification types of questions in IELTS reading. Here they are:

1. Always skim the reading passage to get its general idea.

2. With regard to matching, you would be given statements to match with people, or vice versa. Here, your goal would be to find the information about the people/statements in the passage.

3. On the other hand, when it comes to classification, your goal would be to find the relevant part of the passage.

4. Search carefully for key words and phrases in the statements, then look for the same/similar names or ideas in the passage.

5. Finally, for classification types of questions, discover the most suitable category. Do remember though that a particular category could be used more than once, while some categories might not be used at all.

Next week, we'll be starting to share sets of techniques that you could use in IELTS writing.

Cheers. :)

Other IELTS reading tips:

October 23, 2010

Watch these 3 annoying online punctuation lapses

-The ellipsis (...)
-The m-dash (--)
-The period (.)

These are some punctuation marks that many people erroneously use while chatting or communicating online. Andrea Bartz and Brenna Ehrlich (sarcastically and hilariously) talks about them in their article "Watch these 3 annoying online punctuation lapses - CNN.com."

As you may have known, your examiners check for grammatical range and accuracy when they look at your essays in IELTS writing, so it would help browsing through these tips to take advantage of them in your essays.

Go to Watch these 3 annoying online punctuation lapses - CNN.com.

Cheers!

October 22, 2010

Idiom: in the black

"in the black"

Meaning: profitable; not showing a financial loss

Example: Even though the business has been in the black for several months now, we should continuously study our business expenses to ensure that we're always on top of the situation.


Last week's idioms:
yucky
as easy as pie
be fed up (with someone or something)
change (one's) mind
down in the dumps

October 21, 2010

Phrasal verb: hang in

"hang in"

Meaning: stay positive

Example: One day you'll meet your special someone. Just hang in there.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
break down
call on (someone)
dress up

Idiom: hassle (verb)

"hassle" (verb)

Meaning: annoy; bother; interrupt one's normal routine

Example: I could get this done on time if you'd stop hassling me.


Last week's idioms:
yucky
as easy as pie
be fed up (with someone or something)
change (one's) mind
down in the dumps

October 20, 2010

Phrasal verb: get away with (something)

"get away with (something)"

Meaning: do without being noticed or punished

Example: Study hard. Quit cutting class because you'll never get away it.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
break down
call on (someone)
dress up

Idiom: get on (one's) nerves

"get on (one's) nerves"

Meaning: irritate someone; make someone upset

Example: Well, the muffler looks great, but the loud sound it makes is starting to get on my nerves.


Last week's idioms:
yucky
as easy as pie
be fed up (with someone or something)
change (one's) mind
down in the dumps

October 19, 2010

Phrasal verb: figure (something) out

"figure (something) out

Meaning: understand, find the answer

Example: We need to figure out how to remove the waterspots on the paint of Dave's car.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
break down
call on (someone)
dress up

Idiom: fender-bender

"fender-bender"

Meaning: car/automobile accident

Example: A fender-bender near the 35th exit was the cause of the heavy traffic along the eastbound lane this morning.


Last week's idioms:
yucky
as easy as pie
be fed up (with someone or something)
change (one's) mind
down in the dumps

October 18, 2010

Idiom: every other _____

"every other _____ "

Meaning: alternately; omitting the second one in each group of two

Example: You'll be receiving updates from the team every other day.


Last week's idioms:
yucky
as easy as pie
be fed up (with someone or something)
change (one's) mind
down in the dumps

October 17, 2010

5 Tips for Diagram/Flow Chart Questions in IELTS Reading

Today, we're going to share the tips to remember when handling Diagram or Flow Charts in the IELTS reading module. Read on:

1. Skim the passage to get its general idea.

2. With flow charts, pay attention to the order in which events happen. With regard to diagrams, on the other hand, understand how the various elements or parts of the picture relate to what is described in the passage.

3. For every stage in the flow chart, or for each element of the diagram, locate that part of the passage which presents the same ideas as those mentioned in the flow chart/diagram.

4. You don't need to write the articles ("a," "an," or "the").

5. Never exceed the word limit, and don't modify the words from the passage.

Next week, things to keep in mind when you see classification or matching-type of questions in the IELTS Reading Module will be posted.

Cheers. :)

Other IELTS reading tips:

October 16, 2010

What it means when you say "literally"

One criteria we have to keep in mind when it comes to the IELTS is Lexical Resource. The IELTS candidate should not only be familiar with new words and their meanings, but should also be knowledgeable with regard to their proper use.

Here's an informative - and hilarious - comic from The Oatmeal where he discusses something about the word "literally".

He states...




Now that you know what "literally" means, continue reading the rest of The Oatmeal's funny comic so you'd learn how to use it. Go to The Oatmeal - What it means when you say "literally".

Cheers!

Other comics relating to grammar and punctuation from The Oatmeal:
What it means when you say "literally"
When to use "i.e." in a sentence
How to Use an Apostrophe
Ten Words You Need to Stop Misspelling

October 15, 2010

Phrasal verb: dress up

"dress up"

Meaning: wear nice clothing

Example: We're going to attend a wedding, that's why we have to dress up.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
shop around
take off
wear off

Idiom: down in the dumps

"down in the dumps"

Meaning: depressed; "blue"

Example: I feel kind of down in the dumps. My cat has been missing for days.


Last week's idioms:
sleep on it
tough
update
What for?

October 14, 2010

Phrasal verb: call on (someone)

"call on (someone)

Meaning: visit someone

Example: Our friends called on you on the eve of your birthday but you weren't home.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
shop around
take off
wear off

Idiom: change (one's) mind

"change (one's) mind"

Meaning: decide to do something different from what had been decided earlier

Example: Riza chose to go to Eastwood City, but changed her mind a few minutes later. She said she'd be going instead to the Bonifacio Global City.


Last week's idioms:
sleep on it
tough
update
What for?

October 13, 2010

Phrasal verb: break down

"break down"

Meaning: stop functioning (vehicle, machine)

Example: The washing machine broke down. We've got to find someone to fix it.


Last week's phrasal verbs:
shop around
take off
wear off