Lesson 30: Asking for Help

Dialogue

In this lesson, your tutor will help you go over this topic: asking for help. First, read the following dialogue out loud with your tutor, then switch roles and try again. 

Dorothy and Kevin are talking about how to ask for help.

Kevin: Dorothy, could you help me for a second?
Dorothy: Okay, no problem. I can help you.
Kevin: I’m trying to think more ways you can ask for help. Do you think you can ask around?
Dorothy: One way is to ask, “Do you have a minute?
Kevin: That’s a good one. I use,  “I need your help, please.”
Dorothy: The other day someone asked me, “Could you do me a favor?
Kevin: Yes, it’s good to ask in a nice way. My friend says, “Can you lend me a hand?
Dorothy: You can also say, “I need some assistance, please.”
Kevin: There’s a lot of ways to ask for help. Here’s an easy one: “Can you help me?
Dorothy: I think you know now plenty of ways to ask for help!

Vocabulary

Go over the following vocabulary and expressions with your tutor. Read the word/expression and definition out loud, and your tutor will go over anything you do not understand. Practice creating a sentence or two to make sure you know how to use the word/expression properly.

Vocabulary/ Expressions

Could you help me for a second? (complete sentence) to ask for help in a question
okay, no problem (phrase) a response to someone asking for help
ask around (v – phrase) ask a lot of people for information or help
We need to ask around to find a bank.
Do you have a minute? (complete sentence) to ask for help in a question
I need your help, please. (complete sentence) to ask for help, but not in a question
Could you do me a favor? (complete sentence) to ask for help in a question
Can you lend me a hand? (complete sentence) to ask for help in a question
I need some assistance, please. (complete sentence) to ask for help, but not in a question
Can you help me? (complete sentence) to ask for help in a question * could is more polite than can
ask for (v – phrase) try to get information, help, or permission
Please, ask for help.

Exercise

Practice answering the following questions with your tutors. You can use the sample answers to come up with your own answer. Use the sentences and phrases you learned above.

  1. How would you ask someone to help you move from one home to another?
    1. I’m moving tomorrow. Could you lend me a hand?
    2. Next month I will move into another apartment. I need your help, please.
    3. Your answer:
  2. How would you ask a friend to help you study for a test?
    1. I have a math test tomorrow. I need help to study tonight. Can you help me?
    2. I’m nervous about our English test. Could you help me study for it?
    3. Your answer:
  3. You are sick with the flu. How would you ask your spouse to get you some water?
    1. Can you do me a favor? Get me some more water, please.
    2. I need some assistance, please. I need water, please.
    3. Your answer:
  4. How would you ask around for help?
    1. I’m trying to find the zoo. Can you tell me where it is?
    2. I’m lost. Could you tell me where the supermarket is?
    3. Your answer:
  5. Your kitchen sink leaks water. How would you ask your brother for help to fix it?
    1. Do you have a minute? I need help to fix the kitchen sink.
    2. Could you help me for a second, please? My sink leaks water.
    3. Your answer:

Conversation

Use the following questions as a guideline to form an interesting conversation with your tutor. Feel free to diverge from these suggestions if anything interesting comes up.

  1. Why should people ask for help politely?
  2. Tell me about a time you asked for help.
  3. What are some ways to tell someone you can’t help them? (For example: Ok, no problem.)
  4. What are some other reasons people ask for help?
  5. Sometimes people don’t like to ask for help. Why?

Wrap-up

Go over any new expressions or vocabulary that you learned today.

 

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