Maio de 2017 - One word or two words?

Confounding Compounds Are Confusing Expressions

 A common writing error  occurs when students use the wrong version of a compound word or phrase. It's important to know the difference between everyday and every day because these expressions have very different meanings. It's also important to know because this drives some teachers crazy!

Improve your writing by learning the differences between expressions that are very similar but that fill very different roles when it comes to sentence structure.



“A lot” is a two-word phrase meaning very much. This is an informal expression, so you shouldn’t use it “a lot” in your writing.

“Alot” is not a word, so you should never use it!

It’s a good idea to avoid this expression altogether in formal writing.



Altogether is an adverb meaning completely, entirely, wholly, or "considering everything." It often modifies an adjective.

"All together" means as a group.

The meal was altogether pleasing, but I would not have served those dishes all together.

Please try to avoid these everyday mistakes!



The two-word expression “every day” is used as an adverb (modifies a verb like wear), to express how often something is done:

I wear a dress every day.

The word “everyday” is an adjective that means common or ordinary. It modifies a noun. This word is seldom used and often misused! It is rare that the word everyday is actually correct!

When in doubt, use the two-word version.

I was horrified when I realized I'd worn an everyday dress to the formal dance.

They served an everyday meal -- nothing special.

(Think of everyday as the same as ho-hum.)



The word “nevermind” is often used in error for the two-word term “never mind.” Be careful of this one!

In a nutshell, you’ll probably never need to use "nevermind." It’s an old-fashioned noun meaning attention or notice, used in the negative sense:

Pay no nevermind to that man behind the curtain.

The phrase “never mind” is a two-word imperative meaning “please disregard” or “pay no attention to that.” This is the version you'll use most often in your life.

Never mind that man behind the curtain.

You should avoid using the single word nevermind altogether if you are confused by this! Is that explanation all right?



“Alright” is a word that appears in dictionaries, but it is a nonstandard version of “all right” and should never be used in formal writing.

To be safe, just use the two-word version.

Is everything all right in there?

If you have any doubts about this expression, please ask your teacher for backup information.



There are many compound words that confuse us because they sound similar to a verb phrase. In general, the verb form usually consists of two words and the similar compound word version is a noun or adjective.

Verb: Please back up your work when using a word processor.
Adjective: Make a backup copy of your work.
Noun: Did you remember to make a backup?

Go ahead and make up your own examples!



Verb: I need to work out more often.
Adjective: I need to wear workout clothing when I go to the gym.
Noun: That jog gave me a good workout.

Did you pick up on the various meanings?



Verb: Please pick up your clothes.

Adjective: Don’t use a pickup line on me!

Noun: I’m driving my pickup to the mall.

Remember the differences! Don't be set up for failure!



Verb: You'll have to set up the chairs for the puppet show.
Adjective: Unfortunately, there is no setup manual for a puppet show.

Noun: The setup will take you all day.

Are you waking up to the fact that the verb form usually consists of two words?



Verb: I could not wake up this morning.
Adjective: I should have asked for a wake-up call.
Noun: The accident was a good wake-up.


by Grace Fleming

Abril de 2017 - Como Ampliar seu Vocabulário

Melhorar seu vocabulário em inglês, ou em qualquer outro idioma, requer comprometimento. Escrever longas listas de palavras novas não é uma maneira muito eficiente. As técnicas descritas neste artigo ajudarão você a melhorar seu vocabulário, mas você terá que se dedicar pesquisando e ampliando seu vocabulário.

Existem várias maneiras de melhorar seu vocabulário, primeiramente é importante saber quais são seus objetivos, para escolher a maneira adequada para você.

Ler por exemplo, pode ser uma ótima maneira de ampliar vocabulário, porém não a curto prazo. Aqui você vai encontrar alguns métodos que vão te ajudar a expandir seu vocabulário. Tudo em inglês para você já ir praticando!


1. Vocabulary Trees -Vocabulary trees help provide context. Once you've mapped out a few vocabulary trees, you'll discover yourself thinking in vocabulary groups. When you see a cup your mind will quickly relate such words as knife, fork, late, dishes, etc. This overview to vocabulary trees provides will help you get started.

2. Create Vocabulary Themes - Create a list of vocabulary themes, include the vocabulary, a definition and an example sentence for each new item. Here is an example of a household appliance vocabulary theme sheet.

3.Use Technology to Help You - Watching DVDs is a great way to help you understand native speakers of English. Using all the fancy options watching individual scenes can help make DVD use into a vocabulary learning exercise.

4. Specific Vocabulary Lists - Rather than studying a long list of unrelated vocabulary, use specific vocabulary lists to help you prepare for the type of vocabulary you need for work, school or hobbies. These business vocabulary word lists are great for industry specific vocabulary items. 5. Word Formation Charts - Word formation is one of the keys to success for advanced level ESL learners. Advanced level English exams such as the TOEFL, First Certificate CAE and Proficiency use word formation as one of the key testing elements. These word formation charts provide the concept noun, personal noun, adjective and verb forms of key vocabulary listed in alphabetical order.

6. Visual Dictionaries - A picture is worth a thousand words. It's also very helpful for learning precise vocabulary. There are a number of excellent English learner visual dictionaries for sale. Here is an online version of a visual dictionary dedicated to jobs.

7. Learn Collocations - Collocations refer to words that often or always go together. A good example of a collocation is to do your homework. These lists of important verb + noun collocations will help your learn some of the most important.

8. Use a Corpus - Corpora are huge collections of documents that can track the number of times a word is used. By using a corpora, you can find which words are often used together with target vocabulary words. Combining corpora use with vocabulary trees is a great way to learn key vocabulary for specific vocabulary target areas. You can get started by visiting the British National Corpus.


1. Use vocabulary learning methods to focus quickly on the vocabulary YOU need to study.

2. Don't make random lists of new words. Try to group words in themes. This will help you memorize new words more quickly.

3. If you have the time, and even if you think you don't have the time, try to add context. Writing a few example sentences using new vocabulary will help you remember the words in context.

4. Keep a vocabulary notepad at hand whenever you are reading in English.

by Kenneth Beare

Janeiro de 2017 - Expressões Idiomáticas com make

Expressões Idiomáticas são um desafio para os estudantes de idiomas de um modo geral; simplesmente porque muitas vezes elas não fazem sentido se formos tentar traduzir palavra por palavra, e além disso, elas são parte do discurso diário dos falantes nativos, mas não do estudante de idiomas. Elas vão e vem, são “temporais.”

Nós selecionamos algumas expressões idiomáticas com o verbo make, com a explicação e duas frases de exemplo, para você fixar melhor essas expressões é interessante que você crie outras frases que façam sentido para você. Escreva em um postit e coloque em lugares que você veja com frequência. Trabalhe uma expressão por dia, mas sempre reveja as anteriores antes de passar para as próximas, assim você vai fixar as expressões com mais facilidade.

make a clean sweep - to get ride of everything or everyone to start anew

I'm afraid we'll have to make a clean sweep and start over.
The police made a clean sweep of the area by arresting everyone.

make a comeback - to become successful again after having been away from the scene or society for a long time

The actress made a comeback in her latest movie.
You'll have to make a comeback and take over the company.

make a face - contort your face, make a strange expression often used with 'at someone'

She tasted the soup and made a face. It must have been awful.
Don't make a face at me!
I know you're not happy.

make a fool out of someone - to trick someone and make them look bad

She made a fool out of him and then left him for another man.
I don't think you'll ever make a fool out of me.

make a fuss - to pay a lot of attention to someone or something

She made a fuss the last time we visited, so lets take a gift.
I'm afraid I make a bit of a fuss over my plants in the garden.

make a go of it - to become successful, have success in business 

It took us a few years to make a go of it, but everything's fine now.
Bob made a go of it as an opera singer in Europe. 

make a killing - to earn a lot of money 

Peter has been making a killing as a hedge fund manager.
They made a killing in real estate and retired.

make a living - to earn money in a profession or trade

He makes a living selling insurance to the elderly.
Can you make a good living by teaching?

make a name for oneself - to become famous 

Jennifer made a name for herself as an actress on Broadway.
One day you'll got out into the world and make a name for yourself.

make a point - to make something understood to others

I'm trying to make a point about your lack of effort.
The presentation made the point that you need to start saving early in life.

make a run for it - to try to escape from a bad situation, or just from the rain or something equally unpleasant

Let's make a run for those trees over there. They should keep us dry.
The bank robbers made a run for it, but the police caught them within two hours.

make a scene - to become very upset and vocal so that others notice you

The little girl made a scene every time her mother didn't immediately buy her what she wanted.
Don't make a scene about this. Let's go home and talk about it.

make a stink - to complain loudly about something

She made a stink to human resources after she didn't get the promotion.
I'll go down to the store and make a stink about this!

make an example of someone - to do something negative to someone in order that others understand that they should not do the same

The boss decided to fire him to make an example of him to the other employees.
I'm afraid he made an example of her and she started to cry in front of everybody.

make an exception - to not do something that is usually the rule

I'll make an exception this one time. Next time, don't forget your homework.
Can you make an exception and let me take the test next week?

make arrangements  - to do everything needed in order to be sure that something is done properly

I'll make arrangements for this to be shipped to Japan.
We made arrangements for the meeting next week.

make ends meet - to earn enough money to pay the bills

He works as an English teacher to make ends meet.
You might not get rich, but you'll certainly make ends meet.

make fun of - to joke at the expense of someone 

He made fun of her makeup and she began to cry.
Don't make fun of Peter! He's a great guy!

make light of something - to joke about something serious

I think you need to make light of the whole situation. What good does it do to worry so much?
They made light of the mistake and continued with the job.

make mischief - to do something naughty, to get in trouble

The boys made mischief over the holidays and were grounded for three days.
I know you're making mischief. I can see the twinkle in your eye.

make sense - to try to understand something, to be understandable

Does that make any sense to you?
I'm trying to make sense of this situation.

make short work of something - to do something quickly

Let's make short work of the garden and have a beer.
She made short work of the report and moved on to the presentation.

make something up - to invent something that isn't true, to tell a false story

He made up an excuse to get out of work that day.
Have you ever made something up?

make waves - to cause others trouble, often by complaining a lot

Many people say it's important to not make waves at work. That's how we get into a mess!
Her father made waves until the school decided to give her another chance. 


By Kenneth Beare


Dezembro de 2016 - Apresentações em Inglês

Você costuma fazer apresentações em inglês?

Essa habilidade é bem interessante, pois existem jargões que são utilizados para iniciar, fazer a transição entre os tópicos, ou para finalizar a apresentação.

Selecionamos algumas dessas expressões para você praticar quando for fazer a sua apresentação:


Outlining the presentation

First, I´ll give you some basic information.

Secondly, I’ll talk abou tour stores in other countries.

Next, I´ll talk about career opportunities.

Last of all, I want to look a tour future plans.


Introducing new information

Here´s some basic information.

Let me add a few figures.

Let´s have a look at some statistics.

What are our strengths?


Ending the presentation

To conclude, I want to tell you abou tour future plans.

Finally, a few words abou tour new Project.

Thanks very much for listening tom y talk.

Thanks for coming tom y presentation.

Novembro de 2016 - Black Friday

Black Friday History


For millions of people Black Friday is the time to do some serious Christmas shopping --even before the last of the Thanksgiving leftovers are gone! Black Black is the Friday after Thanksgiving, and it's one of the major shopping days of the year in the United States -falling anywhere between November 23 and 29. While it's not recognized as an official US holiday, many employees have the day off -except those working in retail.

The term “Black Friday” was coined in the 1960s to mark the kickoff to the Christmas shopping season. “Black” refers to stores moving from the “red” to the “black,” back when accounting records were kept by hand, and red ink indicated a loss, and black a profit. Ever since the start of the modern Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in 1924, the Friday after Thanksgiving has been known as the unofficial start to a bustling holiday shopping season.

In the 1960's, police in Philadelphia griped about the congested streets, clogged with motorists and pedestrians, calling it “Black Friday.” In a non-retail sense, it also describes a financial crisis of 1869: a stock market catastrophe set off by gold spectators who tried and failed to corner the gold market, causing the market to collapse and stocks to plummet.

Why did it become so popular?

As retailers began to realize they could draw big crowds by discounting prices, Black Friday became the day to shop, even better than those last minute Christmas sales. Some retailers put their items up for sale on the morning of Thanksgiving, or email online specials to consumers days or weeks before the actual event. The most shopped for items are electronics and popular toys, as these may be the most drastically discounted. However, prices are slashed on everything from home furnishings to apparel.

Black Friday is a long day, with many retailers opening up at 5 am or even earlier to hordes of people waiting anxiously outside the windows. There are numerous doorbuster deals and loss leaders – prices so low the store may not make a profit - to entice shoppers. Most large retailers post their Black Friday ad scans, coupons and offers online beforehand to give consumers time to find out about sales and plan their purchases. Other companies take a different approach, waiting until the last possible moment to release their Black Friday ads, hoping to create a buzz and keep customers eagerly checking back for an announcement.

More and more, consumers are choosing to shop online, not wanting to wait outside in the early morning chill with a crush of other shoppers or battle over the last most-wanted item. Often, many people show up for a small number of limited-time "door-buster" deals, such as large flat-screen televisions or laptops for a few hundred dollars. Since these coveted items sell out quickly, quite a few shoppers leave the store empty handed.

The benefit of online shopping is that you will know right away if the MP3 player you want is out of stock, and can easily find another one without having to travel from store to store. Also, many online retailers have pre-Black Friday or special Thanksgiving sales, so you may not even have to wait until the big day to save.

So, there you have it - the Black Friday history behind the best shopping day of the year!

Copyright © 2016 All rights reserved


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