Archive | Advanced Level English

Blog posts written for advanced level English learners.

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Using the Preposition “With” to Describe

Adjectives describe nouns. About this picture, we could say: The angry mother scolded her sullen daughter. Adjective clauses do the same. The mother, who looked angry, scolded her daughter, who looked sullen. Adjectivals (in this case, the preposition with + noun phrase) do the same. The woman with the angry face scolded a girl with a sullen […]

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English Has Crazy Pronunciation! Why “-gh” Words Don’t Sound Similar.

The crazy spelling of English reflects the etymology (or origin) of English vocabulary. Begin by watching Claire Bowern’s simple TED Talk on the origins of English. So. now you know that the reason why these endings are spelled similarly but are pronounced differently is due to their country/language of origin. Now, let’s look at some specific […]

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Be My (Corny) Valentine!

Valentine’s Day is coming–Are you ready? February 14th is a day for candy hearts and corny cards (“corny” means sentimental and full of cliches).  Here is one example: Roses are red, Violets are blue, Sugar is sweet, and so are you And here is another.  First read the pink version.  Then read the black translation: Do you […]

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What Is the Difference Between Conscious and Conscience?

From the time we’re little, parents, teachers, and religion leaders try to tell us what is right and wrong, what is good behavior and what is bad behavior. As we grow up, these voices remain in our heads and influence our decisions. This is our conscience. The voice of our conscience tells us “Do this! […]

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