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P10 Make Idioms

Purple Level

Lesson Ten — extended practice with idioms


Make / Made / Made / Making

The verb "make" can be used with prepositions or nouns to create idiomatic expressions.

make a kiling = make a lot of money

Todd made a killing selling real estate before the housing market collapsed.

make a move = decide to do something and then act.

When are you going to make a move on Tiffany and ask her out?

make for = to provide; to set the proper conditions.

A two-hour storm with lots of thunder and lightning made for a very entertaining evening.

make good = to do something as a result of a promise or a guarantee.

He’s finally making good on his promise to lose some weight.


make it = to be successful; to become rich or famous or both .

Although his father was a well-known actor, David wanted to make it on his own.

make it by = get past; get around someone

I can’t make it by the car ahead of me, so I’ll just have to sit here and wait.

make it big = to become successful in business.

If you want to make it big in the entertainment world, it’s a good idea to live in Los Angeles.

make it through = to tolerate a bad situation; to survive adversity.

Patty tried to make it through the day at work with a bad headache, but finally she just went home to rest.

make my day = to result in happiness; a happy moment during the day.

The boss told everyone to go home at noon. That really made my day.


make of = to come to a conclusion; to analyze a situation.

What do the police investigators make of the accident? Do they know who was at fault yet?


make out = result; to determine the final amount, usually used with money.

A: How did your company make out last year?

B: We showed a small profit.


make out = kiss

A couple of teenagers were caught making out in the back seat of a parked car.


make time = to travel, quickly or slowly.

We made good time during our flight to Washington and arrived an hour early.


make up = to resolve differences; to end a fight and begin the relationship anew.

Kent and Michael decided to make up and be friends again after a terrible fight on the playground.

make up for lost time = to spend time with someone after a long absence.

After two years of serving in the military in Iraq, Don went home and tried to make up for lost time with his kids.


make use of = to use or to understand

I can’t make use of these clothes, so I think I’ll donate them to Goodwill.


make waves = to cause some problems; to ask questions or comments that might bother people in positions of authority.

When Renaldo started to make waves within the company, they quickly fired him.

Next: Lesson Eleven

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