Learn American English Online Blog
October 31, 2014
Red Level students take Red Level Test #2 today.
The word of the day is "chaos." Thanks to my friends in the Blue Level chat room for this suggestion.
Words that rhyme with "hill."
Today is Halloween. This is a fun holiday in the United States. Children get dressed up in costumes and go from one house to another in their neighborhood and beg for candy. Most people participate in Halloween by carving pumpkins called "Jack-o-lanterns" and placing them outside at night with a candle inside the pumpkin.
October 30, 2014
Red Level students click here for Red Level Test #1.
Purple Level students click here for the Purple Level Test.
The word of the day is "bum."
October 29, 2014
The word of the day is "loose." This is the opposite of yesterday’s word of the day, "tight."
Red Level students complete the Red Level Review today. There are two main reasons for the review. First, it helps to prepare you for the tests. Second, the review and the tests indicate if you should move forward to the Yellow Level.
Purple Level students click here for the Purple Level Review.
October 28, 2014
The word of the day is "tight."
Red Level students go to Red Level dictation to practice listening and writing skills. Remember, you have to write what you hear in your notebook.
Purple Level students study the verb "work" today. There’s a new audio track for that verb.
Do you know anything about American-style football? This reading exercise provides basic information about the sport.
October 27, 2014
The word of the day is "stove."
How much time do you spend during the day standing over a hot stove ?
Purple Level students study the verb "set" today. This is an irregular verb that doesn’t change very much from one verb tense to another, so it’s a little tricky for some students when they listen to someone use "set" in a sentence. It’s a very popular word with many different meanings. Click here to see how "set" is used in ways other than as a verb.
Red Level students study verb phrases today.
October 26, 2014
As I continue to upgrade the audio recordings on the website, I’m also adding new audio. Click here to listen to a new recording for popular expressions that begin with the letter "d."
Red Level Lesson Twenty-six explains how the verb "go" is often used with other verbs, especially in spoken English.
Purple Level Lesson Twenty-six is on the verb "set."
The word of the day is "dismal."
October 25, 2014
One common response to another person’s suggestion, question, request, or information is, "That would be ___________," and then an adjective indicates how the person reacts:
Here’s the video:
The word of the day is "frown."
Red Level students study adjectives and opposite adjectives today. Try this exercise afterwards.
Purple Level students study the verb "have."
October 24, 2014
Red Level Lesson Twenty-four is shows students how to use "be used to." This is a good way to express that a person has become accustomed to doing something, whether it’s pleasurable or not:
Following "be used to," an "ing" word, or a noun, may be used .
Contrast this lesson with yesterday’s lesson on "used to." Do you see the difference?
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The Purple Level lesson for today is on the verb "do."
October 23, 2014
To talk about the past, you can use "used to."
Learn more about "used to" in Red Level Lesson Twenty-three.
The word of the day is "tank."
Purple Level Lesson Twenty focuses on the verb "send."
How are you doing so far this month? Have you been able to keep up with the lesson schedule?
October 22, 2014
The word of the day is "snack." Notice the difference between the pronunciation of this word and yesterday’s word of the day, "snag."
Purple Level students study the verb "let" today.
October 21, 2014
Red Level Lesson Twenty-one helps you with reading numbers and talking about money.
Purple Level Lesson Twenty-one is on the verb "seem." This verb is useful when a person describes his or her impressions and opinions.
The word of the day is "snag." Some students have trouble with the initial "sn" sound. If that’s you, you can practice your pronunciation of the "sn" sound here.
October 20, 2014
Red Level students learn about reflexive pronouns in Red Level Lesson Twenty. Reflexive pronouns refer back to the subject of a sentence. For example…
Who made breakfast? Bob did. Who did he make breakfast for? He made it for himself (Bob). Reflexive pronouns are extremely important to understand. Click here to learn more.
Here’s a new video for reflexive pronouns:
Purple Level Lesson Twenty features the most important and, perhaps, the most complicated verb in English–the verb "be." What makes this verb so hard to use properly? It changes its form completely, depending on the subject and depending on the verb tense. It’s also used as a helping verb. If you don’t recognize the various forms "be" might take, you’re going to be lost.
be, am, is, are, was, were, been, being
The word of the day is "buddy."
October 19, 2014
The word of the day is "fluid." This is a good word to know right now because the Ebola virus is spread through body fluids. Any sort of liquidy substance from the body–blood, sweat, mucous, etc.–is considered a fluid.
Lessons for today:
Red Level Lesson Nineteen is all about possessive pronouns.
Purple Level Lesson Nineteen shows examples for different ways to use the verb "run."
There’s a new YouTube video for infinitives. I felt a need to update the old video for infinitives which was over six years old.
October 18, 2014
Red Level Lesson Eighteen is all about gerunds. It’s important that you study gerunds and infinitives together because they share some of the same qualities.
Purple Level Lesson Eighteen shows examples for the verb "play." Remember that this word is also commonly used as a noun. Look at the sentences below:
The word of the day is "encourage." I’ve added new audio to the is page.
October 17. 2014
The word of the day is "done."
There’s a new reading exercise of the Red Level: Do you need to get a driver’s license?
The lesson for today in the Red Level is on infinitives.
Purple Level Lesson Seventeen focuses on the verb "cut." There are many interesting idioms that are formed with this word. You can take a quiz on this word by clicking here.
October 16, 2014
There’s a new Word of the Day quiz for October 2014.
Beginning level students who are studying in the Red Level learn about expressions of time today.
Purple Level students study the verb "keep." This lesson includes a video and a quiz.
October 15, 2014
The word of the day is "blank." Use this word to describe a flat surface that doesn’t have anything on it, such as a piece of paper of a sign. You can also use "blank" when describing your mind: My mind is a blank today," which means that I’m having a hard time concentrating.
Purple Level students study the verb "tell" today. Now that you have learned about both "say" and "tell," you can take this quiz.
October 14, 2014
If you are studying in the Red Level, here are some things that you can do today:
If you are studying in the Purple Level, this is what I recommend:
The word of the day is "bind."
October 13, 2014
There’s a new reading exercise for the Red Level: Americans drink a lot of coffee.
Your Red Level lesson for today is on the word "like."
Students who are studying in the Purple Level click here to learn about the verb "want." The results of this quiz will show how good you are at distinguishing between the verbs "want" and "need."
The word of the day is "bear."
October 12, 2014
Another way to talk about the future is to use what I (and other English teachers) call the "going to" future tense. It’s extremely common, and if you aren’t using it, you really should. The formula goes like this:
Subject + be + going to + the main verb
The main verb is in the simple form. The verb "be" changes according to the subject. Here are some examples:
Each of these sentences and questions uses the "going to" future tense. Learn more about this in Red Level Lesson Twelve.
Intermediate and advanced students study the verb "need" today. This is suitable for beginning level learners of English as well.
The word of the day is "ache."
October 11, 2014
Students in the Red Level study the future tense today. The easiest way to do this is to use the modal verb "will" which is followed by the main verb in the simple form:
Purple Level students study the verb "come." Notice that this is different from the verb "go." There are many idioms used with this verb
Click here for a quiz.
The word of the day is "bob." This word is often used when something floats in the water.
Here’s a new video for "a little" and "little."
October 10, 2014
Red Level Lesson Ten shows you the differences among the words "a lot of," "some," and "any."
Purple Level Lesson Ten features the verb "make." Make sure you look at the idioms page for this word and take the quiz.
The word of the day is "air."
October 9, 2014
What’s the difference between using "a few" and "few." There’s actually a very big difference in some situations. This new video explains:
October 8, 2014
Beginning level students in the Red Level study the differences between the words "many" and "much."
Today’s lesson for the Purple Level is on the verb "look."
There’s a new Think in English exercise for a situation involving fear. Answers include audio.
The word of the day is "scary."
October 7, 2014
The verb "do" is kind of a strange verb in English because it’s used as a helping verb and as a main verb. It’s also a very idiomatic verb:
Learn more about the verb "do" in Red Level Lesson Seven.
Purple Level Lesson Seven shows how the verb "see" might be used for reasons other than to describe a person’s eyesight.
The word of the day is "necessary."
October 6, 2014
Beginning students learn about object pronouns in Red Level Lesson Six today. Lessons in the Aqua Level will also help you understand more about pronouns if you are confused.
Here’s a new video for subject and object pronouns:
Purple Level students study the verb "give." There’s an idioms page to match this lesson and a quiz.
The word of the day is "chew."
October 5, 2014
Click here to learn how to form questions with the helping verb "do." This is Lesson Five in the Red Level.
Purple Level Lesson Five shows how to use the verb "take." By adding a preposition to "take" you can form many different idioms. Following the lesson, click here to take a quiz.
The word of the day is "bite."
October 4, 2014
Learn how to give a command in Red Level Lesson Four. This is also known as the imperative form. We use commands for directions, instructions, requests, emergencies, and when telling someone not to do something:
Purple Level Lesson Four features the verb "use." If you have looked around on this website, you’ll notice that your teacher uses the verb "use" quite often, especially when given a command.
The word of the day is "hog." A hog is kind of like a pig but bigger. This animal is associated with situations in which there is too much consumption of something. My car is a gas hog. It uses too much gas. It’s not good for a thing or a person to be a hog; however, Harley-Davidson motorcycles are often referred to as hogs. My neighbor rides a hog (not the animal–the motorcycle).
October 3, 2014
Red Level Lesson Three shows you have to use "do" and "did" as helping verbs. This is important to understand because one is used for the present tense (do), and the other is used for the past tense (did).
In Purple Level Lesson Three, students learn how to use the verb "put." Make sure you look at the idioms page as well. If you feel confident enough in your understanding of how verbs change, this quiz is all about the verb "put."
The word of the day is "spin."
October 2, 2014
Did you get today’s emailed lesson? If not, make sure you sign up for emailed lessons and updates on the home page.
Purple Level Lesson Two shows how the verb "get" is used in a variety of situations. This verb has many, many different meanings and applications. It’s also found in a lot of idioms.
The word of the day is "slap."
October 1, 2014
Students who have completed the Blue Level moved forward to the Red Level today and start with Lesson One – do.
Green Level students move forward to the Purple Level. This level features irregular verbs and a few regular verbs that are essential for you to know in order to speak and write in English. The first lesson in the Purple Level is on the verb "go." You should also take a look at the idioms page that matches this verb.
The Purple Level readings exercises for this month come from Aesop, an Ethiopian folklorist whose work is known around the world. The first story is "The Man, the Boy, and the Donkey."
The word of the day is "mortgage."
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