Lesson 20: Present Perfect Continuous

Screenshot 2017-02-03 14.07.52.png


Practice by reading the dialogue with your tutor. After you are done, switch roles and do it again!

  • K: I’ve been sleeping pretty late recently, so I’ve been feeling really tired.
  • D: That’s too bad. Why haven’t you been getting more rest?
  • K: I usually have a pretty good work-life balance, but recently I’ve been slammed at work.
  • D: It sounds like that’s been difficult for you. I hope your work eases up soon!



Read the following skills out loud with your tutor.

In this lesson, we’re going to cover the present perfect continuous. In this tense, you use the words “has been” or “have been.” You use it for:

  1. an activity started in the past and continues to the present
  2. an activity started in the past and recently finished


  • I’ve been reading the book you lent me.
  • I usually work in Dubai, but I’ve been working in New York for 2 weeks.


Some more examples

  • Affirmative: She has been running.
  • Negative: He hasn’t been working out as much as he should.
  • Affirmative Question: Have they been traveling a lot?
  • Negative Question: Haven’t they been doing a great job?


Note: You may have noticed that the verb following “has been” or “have been” using ends in “-ing” (ex: She has been running.).  This tense is called the “present participle.”


Screenshot 2017-02-03 14.16.46.png




Make a positive present perfect continuous sentence using the words.


  • It / rain / for two hours   It has been raining for two hours.
  • The children / play / baseball / all day    (1) __________________________.
  • The girl / dream / about her boyfriend   (2) ___________________________.
  • They / talk / for the past 2 hours    (3) ___________________________.
  • It seems like I / cook / tonight’s dinner forever    (4) _________________________.

Make a negative present perfect continuous sentence using the words.

  • John/travel/lately    John hasn’t been traveling lately.
  • The soccer team / practice / together recently (5)  _________________________.
  • I / feel / well for several weeks. (6) _____________________________.
  • The police / patrol / the neighborhood this week  (7) _______________________.
  • You and I / text / for two hours (8) ___________________________.




Make a present perfect continuous question sentence using the words.

  • you / brush / your teeth after every meal?   Have you been brushing your teeth after every meal?
  • the dog / eat / all is food? (9) _____________________________.
  • your mother / shop / in the mall recently?  (10) ___________________________.
  • you / practice / for the marathon this month? (11) _________________________.
  • patient / complain / a lot about his stomach?  (12) _________________________.


Discussion Questions

  • What are some habits you’ve had for years? Can you describe them to your tutor?
  • What are some activities your family members have been doing? Can you describe them to your tutor?
  • What are some things you’ve always wanted to do? Why haven’t you been doing them?



(Source: 1. http://www.slideshare.net/marolmedo/present-perfect-continuous-29045024, 2. https://www.pinterest.com/katarzynawachel/present-perfect-continuous/)


Answer Key:

(1) The children have been playing baseball all day.

(2) The girl has been dreaming about her boyfriend.

(3) They have been talking for the past two hours.

(4) It seems like I have been cooking tonight’s dinner forever.

(5) The soccer team hasn’t been practicing together recently.

(6) I haven’t been feeling well for several weeks

(7) The police haven’t been patrolling the neighborhood this week.

(8) You and I haven’t texted for two hours.

(9) Has the dog been eating all her food?

(10) Has your mother been shopping in the mall recently?

(11) Have you been practicing for the marathon this month?

(12) Has the patient been complaining a lot about his stomach?

Lesson 19: Present Perfect

future and past


Practice by reading the dialogue with your tutor. After you are done, switch roles and do it again!

  • K: Have you read the email that Joe sent this morning?
  • D: No, I haven’t even gotten a chance to turn on my computer yet.
  • K: Joe announced that he has left the company!
  • D: Oh wow, what a surprise! That’s too bad, as I have really enjoyed working with him.



The Present Perfect Tense is used when an activity has started in the past and continues into the present. Below, you’ll see many examples of positive, negative, and interrogative present perfect sentences. Read them out loud with your tutor.

Positive Present Perfect

Subject Have Past


Rest of the Sentence
I have studied for the exam.
You have bought a new computer.
He has eaten my chocolate.
She has written an e-mail.
It has been cold this month.
We have won the championship.
You have tried to learn a lot.
They have forgotten my birthday.

Exercise: Now try creating a positive present perfect sentence yourself.


Negative Present Perfect

Subject Have Past


Rest of the Sentence
I haven’t studied for the exam.
You haven’t bought a new computer.
He hasn’t eaten my chocolate.
She hasn’t written an e-mail.
It hasn’t been cold this month.
We haven’t won the championship.
You haven’t tried to learn a lot.
They haven’t forgotten my birthday.

Exercise: Now try creating a negative present perfect sentence yourself.

Questions (interrogative)

Have Subject Past


Rest of the Sentence
Have I been chosen for the team?
Have you bought a new car?
Has he eaten my sandwich?
Has she written the letter?
Has it started on time?
Have we won a trophy?
Have you kept my secret?
Have they driven there?

Exercise: Now try creating an interrogative present perfect sentence yourself.


Past Participles

You may have noticed that the present perfect sentences above all use past participles. Past participles are verbs that end in “ed” (most of the time). Sometimes however past participles are irregular.


Note: For more irregulars click on this link: http://www.myenglishteacher.net/irregularverbsprintable.html





Make a positive present perfect sentence using the words.


  • I / study / English I have studied English.
  • He / live / here / for three years (1) _________________________________.
  • John / teach / English / in Bogotá, Colombia (2) _____________________________.
  • My parents / miss / the train (3) _______________________.
  • You / eat / all of the cake (4)  _______________________________.



Make a negative present perfect sentence using the words.

  • John/finish/his homework    John has not finished his homework. 
  • They / buy / a house yet (5) ___________________________.
  • We / go / on a vacation in three years (6) __________________________________.
  • His friend / work / for one year (7) _________________________________.
  • Her boyfriend / graduate / from the university (8) __________________________.



Make a present perfect interrogative sentence using the words.

  • The Chinese students / visit / the USA? Have the Chinese students visited the USA?
  • How long / your mother / be / sick? (9) ________________________________.
  • What / you / do / today? (10) ______________________________.
  • John / talk / with his mother today? (11) ________________________________.
  • Where / your brother / be / all week? (12) ___________________________________



Using John’s Life Timeline above, make present perfect sentences using the words. Some of the sentences are questions.

  • John / achieve / his CELTA certification in Bogota Colombia     John has achieved his CELTA certification in Bogota Colombia.
  • He / graduate / from high school? (13) _____________________________.
  • John / live / abroad in Chile? (14) __________________________________.
  • He / work / for Warner Lambert (15) _________________________________.
  • John / complete / his military enlistment (16) _______________________________.


Discussion Questions

  • Tell your tutor your life story starting from your birth to the current day. Try to use some past perfect sentences.
  • What are some hobbies you’ve always enjoyed?
  • What are some pet peeves that you have always had?



(Source: 1. http://www.grammar.cl/Present/Perfect_Tense.htm, 2. http://images.slideplayer.com/10/2895525/slides/slide_9.jpg)


Answer Key:

(1) He has lived here for three years.

(2) John has taught English in Bogotá, Colombia.

(3) My parents have missed the train.

(4) You have eaten all of the cake.

(5) They have not bought a house yet.

(6) We have not gone on a vacation in three years.

(7) His friend has not worked for one year.

(8) Her boyfriend has not graduated from the university.

(9) How long has your mother been sick?

(10) What have you done today?

(11) Has John talked with his mother today?

(12) Where has your brother been all week?

(13) Has he graduated from high school?

(14) Has John lived abroad in Chile?

(15) He has worked for Warner-Lambert.

(16) John has completed his military enlistment.

Lesson 18: The Wh-ever Words and However


Watch the video below with your tutor. Click on the link below to get started:



Using the wh-ever words

Read the diagram out loud with your tutor. Try using each word in a sentence about your own life.




Using “however” (to use with commas or not)

“However” when used to mean ‘no matter how’ or ‘in whatever way’ doesn’t need commas. When you have 2 clauses that contrast each other, you will use a comma.


  • I want you to finish your report today however busy you are.
  • You can dress however you like for the party.
  • I don’t agree with you, however, I do understand your point of view.
  • He has good intentions, however, sometimes he can be rude.



Read the quotes below out loud with your tutor. Pay attention to how the “wh-ever” words are used.

Screenshot 2017-01-13 14.40.57.png


Screenshot 2017-01-13 14.41.48.png




Match the quote below with one of the meanings (lettered)

Wherever you go, no matter what the weather, always bring your own sunshine. You need to make yourself happy even during the worst of times.

(1) Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.

(2) Whatever you decide to do, make sure it makes you happy.

(3) Whoever said that diamonds are a girl’s best friend … never owned a dog.

(4) In war, whichever side may call itself the victor, there are no winners, but all are losers.

(5) We can make the world spin however we want.

a. Nobody in a conflict comes out ahead.
b. You need to make yourself happy even during the worst of times.
c. Do things that are positive and fulfilling.
d. It’s up to you to decide what you want in life.
e. You can find better love, comfort, and beauty in non-lavish things.
f. It’s better to be nice to others.




Fill in the blank with a “wh-ever” word or “however.”

  • It doesn’t matter to me, we can do whatever you want tonight.
  • (6) _____________ long it takes to achieve my goals is ok with me.
  • You can select (7) _________________ car you want from the lot.
  • The travel agency said we can leave for Jamaica (8) _____________ we want, because the price is still the same.
  • (9) _______________ designed this outfit has a lot of creativity.
  • (10) _______________ you are in ten years, make the best of it.    




Make your own sentence using the “wh-ever” word or “however.”

  • wherever: I was once told I can go wherever I want in life as long as I have passion and ambitions.
  • whatever: _______________________________________.
  • however: _______________________________________.
  • whichever: _______________________________________.
  • whoever: _______________________________________.
  • whenever: _______________________________________.




Fill in the blank with the correct wh-ever” word or “however.”

  • If you are talking about an object, use whatever.
  • If you are talking about locations, use (11) _____________.
  • If you are talking about individuals, use (12) ______________.
  • If you are talking about a time to meet, use (13) _____________.
  • If you are talking about alternatives, use (14) _______________.
  • If you are talking in which manner, use (15) ________________.




Discussion Questions

Read the quotes below and tell your tutor if you agree or disagree with each quote. Explain why or why not.

  1. You need to make yourself happy even during the worst of times.
  2. Do things that are positive and fulfilling.
  3. It’s up to you to decide what you want in life.
  4. You can find better love, comfort, and beauty in non-lavish things.
  5. It’s better to be nice to others.




Image source: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/844493655009698/


Answer Key:

(1) f. It’s better to be nice to others.

(2) c. Do things that are positive and fulfilling.

(3) e. You can find better love, comfort, and beauty in non-lavish things.

(4) a. Nobody in a conflict comes out ahead.

(5) d. It’s up to you to decide what you want in life.

(6) However

(7) whichever

(8) whenever

(9) Whoever

(10) Wherever

(11) wherever

(12) whoever

(13) whenever

(14) whichever

(15) however

Lesson 17: Manners and Etiquette


Watch the video below with your tutor. Click on the link below to get started:


Discussion questions

  1. When watching American movies, do you see social norms that surprise you?
  2. In your culture, is it normal to smile at strangers in the street? What would people think if you did?
  3. What countries have social norms that are similar to yours? Which countries do you find the most different?
  4. Do you have any foreigners as friends? What do you like about their manners? What do you find surprising?



Phrases to show respect and politeness when making requests

Read the diagram below out loud with your tutor. Try making a sentence with each phrase below.

Screenshot 2017-01-06 17.15.03.png



Go over the vocabulary and expressions below with your tutor. Try making sentences with each word.

courteous 📘
offensive 📘
ladylike 📘
gentlemanly 📘
compliment 📘
appropriate 📘
swear 📘
obliged 📘
rude 📘
punctual 📘
slurping 📘





Use the phrase to make a sentence. Try to use the words in the vocabulary list above and the pictures.

  • Could you please…

Could you please stop slurping your soup at the table?

  • Would you mind…. _________________________________________________________?
  • Would you be so kind as to…. _________________________________________________________?
  • Could you possibly…. _________________________________________________________?
  • Would you kindly…. _________________________________________________________?


Write 1 or 2 sentences based on the situation.

  • Compliment a coworker who received a promotion.

Kevin, congratulations on your promotion! I wish you all the best.

  • Being courteous to someone. __________________________________________________________.
  • Being gentlemanly. __________________________________________________________.
  • Use “excuse me” to tell someone to stop being rude. __________________________________________________________.
  • Offer assistance to someone. __________________________________________________________.




Speaking Exercise: Here’s a list of rules of etiquette. Which ones apply to your country? Have some rules changed over the last two decades?

  • burping at the table

In the USA, it is considered bad manners to burp at the table, although some people might accept the behavior as being ok. Burping in public is another story. It’s considered rude behavior, and I would highly suggest not doing it. In years past, it was less acceptable. Over time, however, I think people have become more tolerant of this behavior, especially the younger generation.

  • putting your feet up on a table or chair


  • arriving late to meet friends


  • swearing in public


  • putting your elbows on the table while eating a meal




Use the following words in a sentence. Try to use them in relationship to manners and etiquette in your country.

  • punctual

Being punctual in the USA is considered good etiquette. However, in other countries, it’s not.

  • appropriate ________________________________________________________.
  • ladylike ________________________________________________________.
  • offensive ________________________________________________________.
  • rude_____________________________________________________.





(Source: 1. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/256986722461735415/, 2. http://www.michellehenry.fr/mannersmat.jpg, 3. http://www.slideshare.net/JinalShah25/etiquette-55768709)

Lesson 16: Cheating

Screenshot 2017-01-06 14.47.18.png


Read the passage out loud with your tutor. The bolded words will be covered in this lesson.

Everybody cheats. Whether it’s the taxi driver who tricks a visitor and takes them the long way around, the store cashier who doesn’t give the correct change, or the police officer who accepts a bribe: everybody’s at it. Cheaters in the news include the scientist whose research was based on fake data, the game show contestant who collaborated with a friend in the audience to win a million dollars and the doctor who forged his qualifications and wasn’t really a doctor at all. Everybody cheats!

Is cheating acceptable? Is it a natural way of surviving and being successful? Or is it something that should be frowned upon, and something young people should be discouraged from doing? If it’s the latter, then how can we explain to children why so many folks bend the rules?

(excerpt from www.onestopenglish.com)




Using adjective + preposition combinations.

Read the diagram out loud with your tutor. Try coming up with 5-6 sentences using some of the words below.

Screenshot 2017-01-06 14.51.28.png


  • You are capable of becoming a fluent English speaker.
  • Please be kind to everyone in the world.
  • I’m annoyed with all the crazy drivers on the streets.
  • Are you familiar with any of the online English learning websites?
  • [come up with 5-6 sentences using the phrases above]


Tip: You may be wondering how you can learn these combinations. Unfortunately, there are no defined rules. You will have to memorize them individually through repetition and practice.




Read the diagrams out loud with your tutor.

Screenshot 2017-01-06 14.56.48.png

Screenshot 2017-01-06 14.58.35.png



  • You’re not allowed to speak aloud in the library.
  • I ate eight slices of pizza.
  • The bear scratched the tree bare.
  • It would be fun fly like a bee.
  • [Come up with 3-4 sentences using the homophone pairs above]




Go over the vocabulary and expressions below with your tutor. Try using each in a sentence.

cheater 📘
discourage 📘
bribe 📘
frowned on 📘
bend the rules 📘
trick 📘
the long way around an indirect route
collaborate 📘
whether 📘
forged 📘




Pick the best adj + prep combination to complete the sentence.

  • My opinion is (1) attached to / based on my experience as an educator.
  • My dog is (2) jealous of / opposed to every other dog that comes in my house.
  • My brother’s daughter is so (3) excited about / aware of starting college next year.
  • They are (4) related to / aware of the tricks people play on others.
  • I think bending the rules is (5) different from / used to breaking the rules.




Choose the homophone that makes sense in the sentence.

  • The pet store tricked some dog owners into buying (6) flea / flee powder that was expired.
  • Whether he wins an award or not, the actor played an amazing (7) roll/role in his new movie.
  • Some taxi drivers take their passengers the long way around to receive a higher (8) fare/fair.
  • Even taking a small bribe is (9) breaking/braking the law.
  • The students have to collaborate on a team project during the (10) coarse / course.



Write a sentence using the adj + prep. Try to use some of the words and phrases from the vocabulary list above.

  • guilty of  A lot of people are guilty of bending the rules.
  • afraid of _____________________________________________.
  • suitable for __________________________________________.
  • sick of _______________________________________________________.
  • angry about ____________________________________________.



Identify the incorrectly used homophone and replace it with the correct one.

  • The whether is currently sunny and 35 here in Bangkok Thailand. weather
  • Cheaters bare the guilt of their bad actions. (11) _________________
  • People knead to be discouraged from forging signatures on bank checks. (12) ________________
  • The public official aloud the organization to bribe him. (13) ___________
  • It’s frowned on to stair at people in public places. (14) ____________


Discussion Questions

  • When was the last time you bent the rules for something? Describe the situation to your tutor.
  • Is bribery a common practice in your country? If so, describe the types of bribery that often happen.
  • Describe the last time you got tricked? How did you feel?


(Source: 1. https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/how-often-do-people-cheat-during-online-tests-mike-russiello, 2. www.onestopenglish.com, 3. http://www.treetopdisplays.co.uk/images/img1297.png, 4. https://cdn.teachercreated.com/20150624/covers/900sqp/7737.png)


Answer Key:

(1) based on

(2) jealous of

(3) excited about

(4) aware of

(5) different from

(6) flea

(7) role

(8) fare

(9) breaking

(10) course

(11) bear

(12) need

(13) allowed

(14) stare

Lesson 15: Countable or Uncountable

Screenshot 2017-01-06 14.10.18.png



Practice by reading the dialogue with your tutor. After you are done, switch roles and do it again!

  • Kevin: I have a lot of time on my hands. Do you have more work for me to do?
  • Dorothy: Unfortunately, it’s very slow right now. I hope to have a few extra projects soon.
  • Kevin: Too much free time makes the work day long and boring. Maybe I should take a little time off from work.
  • Dorothy: I wish I could take a long vacation now. However, I don’t have many vacation days left.



Using countable and uncountable nouns

Read the diagrams and skills below out loud with your tutor.

Screenshot 2017-01-06 14.43.07.png

Note: Some nouns are both countable and uncountable, depending on how you use them: https://www.englishclub.com/ref/Nouns_that_are_Count_and_Noncount/



A) Most nouns have singular and plural forms. They are countable nouns.

e.g. one letter, two letters

  • There is a letter on the table for you. (singular)
  • There are letters on the table for you. (plural)


B) Some nouns only have one form. They are uncountable nouns.

e.g. money

  • There is no money in my bank account.
  • There is a lot of money in my bank account.


C) Many uncountable nouns refer to substances.

e.g. chocolate, water, coffee, milk, sugar, salt, cheese, bread, rice, wood, glass, plastic, soap, toothpaste.

  • Do you have any chocolate?
  • The milk is sour – let’s make cheese.
  • Rice is only edible when it has been cooked.


D) Many uncountable nouns refer to abstract ideas or emotions.

e.g. love, sadness, happiness, education, knowledge, and grammar.

  • Money can’t buy love.
  • We like to experience happiness.
  • This education is priceless.


E) You can use an and a with singular countable nouns.

e.g. an umbrella, a wheel, a mistake.

  • It’s raining so I need an umbrella.
  • I made a mistake.
  • This is a job for Superman.


F) You can use plural countable nouns alone.

e.g. apples, bees, and clouds.

  • There are clouds in the sky today.
  • There are bees making honey.
  • We eat apples for breakfast.


G) You can’t use an article with an uncountable noun.

e.g. time, sand, and electricity.

  • We need electricity to use our heater.
  • I lost track of time and we stayed up very late.
  • The beaches in Brazil have very nice sand.


H) It is very common in English to use “some” or “any” with plural nouns and uncountable nouns. 

e.g. They don’t listen to any advice.

  • We don’t have any toys for the children.
  • There are many lessons in life, this is just one more.
  • It is important to have some knowledge of grammar.

I) There is a range of nouns that are uncountable in English but are countable in other languages.

These include: accommodation, advice, baggage, behavior, bread, chaos, damage, furniture, information, luck, luggage, news, permission, progress, scenery, traffic, weather, and work


J) For comparison purposes, look at these sentences:

Countable Uncountable
I’m looking for a job. I’m looking for work.
What a beautiful view! What beautiful scenery!
It’s a nice day today. It’s nice weather today.
We had a lot of bags and suitcases. We had a lot of luggage.
These chairs are mine. This furniture is mine.
It was a good suggestion. It was good advice.



Using quantifiers with countable and uncountable nouns.

Read the diagrams below out loud with your tutor.

Screenshot 2017-01-06 14.20.58.png






Go over the vocabulary and expressions below with your tutor. Try using each word in a sentence about your own life.

bliss 📘
weather 📘
scenery 📘
luggage 📘
suitcase 📘
argument 📘
sand 📘
umbrella 📘
coin 📘
command 📘
advice 📘
furniture 📘
session 📘
laughter 📘
heater 📘



Fill in the blank with a lot of (lots of), many, or much to complete the sentence.

  • The store has a lot of colorful umbrellas for sale.
  • There aren’t ___________ tutoring sessions available on weekends.
  • His English teacher gave him ___________ advice about the IELTS exam.
  • Too _______ laughter isn’t a bad thing.
  • Dogs get confused when too __________ commands are given at one time.



Fill in the blank with few, a little, a few, or little to complete the sentence.

  • There are only a few pieces of luggage remaining in the baggage claim area.
  • The (1) ________ serious arguments we have hurt our relationship.
  • Sometimes (2) _________ laughter is good for the mind and soul.
  • After (3) _____________ sessions of English, you should see some improvement!
  • Some people say you will have (4) ________ bliss in life if you are always worried about earning more money.



Determine if the word is countable or uncountable. Write a sentence using the word with one of the quantifiers you learned in this lesson.

  • weather (uncountable) We have a lot of good weather in my hometown.
  • furniture (____________) _______________________________________________________.
  • command (___________) _______________________________________________________.
  • heater (_____________) _______________________________________________________.
  • scenery (_____________) _______________________________________________________.




Pick the correct countable or uncountable noun and the quantifier to complete the sentence.

  • I need a new suitcase/luggage, but I don’t have much/many money to buy one.
  • The (5) scenery/weather is beautiful. However, I don’t see a few / many trees.
  • If we buy new (6) furniture/heater, do you think we could spend a few / a little extra dollars to replace the carpet?
  • Some (7) laughter/advice is of few / little help when it doesn’t make sense.
  • I have (8) some / much leftovers if you want to eat a little / few.



Discussion Questions (try to use some of the new nouns you’ve learned)

  1. When was the last time you were looking for a job? What kind of work do you enjoy?
  2. How is the weather today? What kind of day is it?
  3. When you travel, do you bring a lot of luggage? How many bags do you bring?
  4. Describe the furniture you have in your house. What is your favorite piece?
  5. When was the last time you gave someone advice? What suggestions did you give?



(Source: 1. https://i.ytimg.com/vi/9AexHpvOYfQ/maxresdefault.jpg, 2. http://www.engames.eu/countable-and-uncountable-nouns/, 3. https://www.englishclub.com/ref/Nouns_that_are_Count_and_Noncount/, 4. http://www.grammar.cl/Notes/Countable_Uncountable_Nouns.htm)


Answer Key:

(1) few

(2) a little

(3) a few

(4) little

(5) scenery / many

(6) furniture / a few

(7) advice / little

(8) some / a little

Lesson 14: How to Learn and Use Phrasal Verbs


  • Did you know “turn off” is a phrasal verb?
  • Do you hate learning phrasal verbs?
  • Do phrasal verbs confuse you?
  • Do native and fluent English speakers use phrasal verbs a lot?
  • Do you need to learn and use phrasal verbs?

If you answered “Yes” to any of these questions, this lesson is for you!





Read these new skills out loud with your tutor.

Learn some common phrasal words

Read the diagram below out loud with your tutor. Try to make a sentence with each of the phrasal verbs below.

Screenshot 2017-01-06 13.55.42.png



Screenshot 2017-01-06 13.59.36.png

Tips for Phrasal Verbs:

  • Don’t try to understand the individual meaning of the words in the phrase. Instead, try to understand the meaning of the words together
  • Like many other words in English, phrasal verbs often have more than one meaning
  • Just like regular verbs, phrasal verbs can be used with the different verb tenses – get up, got up, getting up, will get up, to get up, etc




Write a sentence using the phrasal verb.

  • put up with Every night I have to put up with the dogs barking outside.
  • give up  ___________________________________________________.
  • pass out __________________________________________________.
  • put away __________________________________________________.
  • set off ____________________________________________________.




Decide which phrasal verb is correct to complete the sentence.

  • If we want to go travel around the world, we need to put aside some money. (put aside / turn into)
  • The bus is really late! I wonder what the (1) ___________ is? (call off / hold up)
  • My brother always (2) ______________ everything when we were kids. (got away with / look down on)
  • Every time my parents go away for a long time, my siblings and I (3) ________ them _________. (see off / set off)
  • Why are you (4) ______________ with me? (pulling through / breaking up)




Determine which verb tense the phrasal verb is using: present simple, past simple, future simple, infinitive, or continuous present.

  • Two of my workers called off today. past simple
  • I think you are turning into a shopaholic, because you are buying a lot of clothes. (5) ____________________
  • If parents always give in, their children will never learn the value of hard work. (6) ________________
  • You will pass out from heat exhaustion if you stay outside too long. (7) ____________
  • The children need to put their toys away. (8) ___________________



Identify the phrasal verbs used in the following paragraph. There are 5 in total.

When you arrive at the airport, you need to check in first. Before the plane takes off, buckle your seat belt. After the plane lands, get off the plane and walk to the baggage claim area to collect your suitcase. Unfortunately, you will have to put up with other people who are collecting their bags also. When you leave the airport, you need to get on the shuttle bus to the car rental office.

(9) to check in

(10) ___________

(11) ___________

(12) ___________

(13) ___________


Discussion Questions

  • Tell your tutor about your last travel experience in detail. Did you fly or drive or take a train? When did you take off and get in? Did you get held up?
  • What are some things that annoy you but you put up with? Give your tutor some examples.
  • When was the last time you gave up on something important? What caused you to give in?



(Source: 1. http://www.recyclereminders.com/conserve-energy-signs, 2. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/411727590910522875/)


Answer Key:

(1) hold up

(2) got away with

(3) see / off

(4) breaking up

(5) continuous present

(6) present simple

(7) future simple

(8) infinitive

(9) check in

(10) takes off

(11) get off

(12) put up

(13) get on

Lesson 13: Prefixes

Read the diagram below out loud with your tutor.



Practice by reading the dialogue with your tutor. After you are done, switch roles and do it again.

  • Kevin: Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? There are more impolite people than polite people.
  • Dorothy: In my opinion, some people are unkind and impolite, but most people are pleasant and respectful.
  • Kevin: That’s an interesting view. Sometimes I meet unfriendly, impolite people who make me disagree with that idea.
  • Dorothy: Oh, that’s a shame. It’s unfair to let a few bad eggs to ruin your impression of everyone else!




Using prefixes


Read the diagram below out loud with your tutor.

Screenshot 2017-01-06 12.08.22.png



Here’s a more complete list of prefixes. Review them out loud with your tutor. Try to come up with more examples of prefixed words as you go along.

prefix meaning examples
anti- against/opposed to anti-government, anti-racist, anti-war
auto- self autobiography, automobile
de- reverse or change de-classify, decontaminate, demotivate
dis- reverse or remove disagree, displeasure, disqualify
down- reduce or lower downgrade, downhearted
extra- beyond extraordinary, extraterrestrial
hyper- extreme hyperactive, hypertension
il-, im-, in-, ir- not illegal, impossible, insecure, irregular
inter- between interactive, international
mega- very big, important megabyte, mega-deal, megaton
mid- middle midday, midnight, mid-October
mis- incorrectly, badly misaligned, mislead, misspelled
non- not non-payment, non-smoking
over- too much overcook, overcharge, overrate
out- go beyond outdo, out-perform, outrun
post- after post-election, post-war
pre- before prehistoric, pre-war
pro- in favor of pro-communist, pro-democracy
re- again reconsider, redo, rewrite
semi- half semicircle, semi-retired
sub- under, below submarine, sub-Saharan
super- above, beyond super-hero, supermodel
tele- at a distance television, telepathic
trans- across transatlantic, transfer
ultra- extremely ultra-compact, ultrasound
un- remove, reverse, not undo, unpack, unhappy
under- less than, beneath undercook, underestimate
up- make or move higher upgrade, uphill




Identify the 5 words with prefixes in the following paragraph.

I need to buy a new bicycle because my current one constantly needs repairs. The other day, I saw that the local bike shop is having a presale on bikes. They are advertising 10% off on the new models coming out soon. I went inside to ask the salesperson if the ad misrepresented the discount. She said it was true and that I could prepay and pick the bike up at a later date. Unfortunately, I was short on cash at the time, but the sale will continue until next week.

(1) bicycle

(2) _____________

(3) _____________

(4) _____________

(5) _____________



Fill the blanks in with one of the following words: undercooked, uphill, outperform, non-stop, multicultural

  • After my car accident, I had an uphill battle to a full recovery.
  • A lot of big cities are (6) _________________ because more people are moving from different countries.
  • You need to (7) ______________ your previous IELTS exam if you want to improve your chance of success.
  • It has been raining (8) _______________ for the past three days.
  • Eating (9) _____________ meat could cause food poisoning.




Write a sentence using the word with a prefix.

  • improper –  It’s improper to wear shorts and a t-shirt for a job interview.
  • midnight – ________________________________________________.
  • reconsider – _______________________________________________.
  • unpack – __________________________________________________.
  • discourage – _______________________________________________.



Discussion Questions

  1. Who is your favorite superhero? What is his/her superpower?
  2. What’s worse: impolite or impractical people? Why?
  3. Do you prefer understated fashion or overstated fashion? Why?




(Sources: 1. http://www.treetopdisplays.co.uk/writing_and_grammar1.php, 2. http://www.slideshare.net/met4457/prefixes-and-suffixes-macu. 3. http://dictionary.cambridge.org/grammar/british-grammar/word-formation/prefixes, 4. http://englishgrammarviii.blogspot.com/2015/07/prefixes.html)


Answer Key:

(1) bicycle

(2) presale

(3) misrepresented

(4) prepay

(5) Unfortunately

(6) multi-cultural

(7) outperform

(8) non-stop

(9) undercooked

Lesson 12: Suffixes

Read the diagram below out loud with your tutor.

Screenshot 2017-01-06 11.47.16.png


Practice by reading the dialogue with your tutor. After you are done, switch roles and do it again! (Note: The bolded words are all examples of suffixes.)

  • Kevin: Dorothy, you have a beautiful dog. Does he provide protection for your family as well?
  • Dorothy: Yes, we feel safer with him around. He’s also an excitable and playful dog, to say the least. Sometimes he can be a handful.
  • Kevin: I’m sure he can be a distraction when you are trying to work from home.
  • Dorothy: He wants my attention all the time. At times, I want to medicate him to calm him down, but I wouldn’t really do that to him.


Read the new skills below out loud with your tutor.

Inflectional suffixes

Inflectional suffixes do not change the meaning of the original word. The suffix is added simply to match the plural, the tense, or etc. Look at these examples:

suffix grammatical change original word suffixed word
-s plural dog dogs
-en plural (irregular) ox oxen
-s 3rd person singular present like he likes
-ed past tense

past participle

work he worked

he has worked

-en past participle (irregular) eat he has eaten
-ing continuous/progressive sleep he is sleeping
-er comparative big bigger
-est superlative big the biggest

Derivational suffixes

With derivational suffixes, the new word is “derived” from the original word. The new word now has a different meaning. There are several hundred derivational suffixes. Here are some of the more common ones:

suffix making example

original word


suffixed word

-ation nouns explore




-sion persuade




-er teach teacher
-cian music musician
-ess god goddess
-ness sad sadness
-al arrive arrival
-ary diction dictionary
-ment treat treatment
-y jealous




-al adjectives accident accidental
-ary imagine imaginary
-able tax taxable
-ly brother brotherly
-y ease easy
-ful sorrow




-ly adverbs helpful helpfully
-ize verbs terror




-ate hyphen hyphenate

Note: The following website provides more suffixes, their meanings, and examples: https://www.learnthat.org/pages/view/suffix.html


Identify the words ending in a suffix in the following paragraph. (1)

Sunset is the time of day when our sky meets the outer space solar winds. There are blue, pink, and purple swirls, spinning and twisting, like clouds of balloons caught in a blender. The sun moves slowly to hide behind the line of the horizon, while the moon races to take its place in prominence atop the night sky. People slow to a crawl, entranced, fully forgetting the deeds that still must be done. There is a coolness and calmness when the sun does set.

Fill the blanks in with one of the following words: works, teacher, sadness, terrorize, taxable

  • A cashier works with a machine that adds and subtracts numbers.
  • People who (2) _________________ others need to be put in prison for their crimes.
  • Everyone in the USA must report all (3) ________________ income at the end of the year.
  • The (4) _________________ fell upon the losing football team towards the end of the match.
  • A (5) _____________ has to know how to be compassionate.


Write a sentence using the word.

  • creative –  A creative person finds inspiration in the work they do.
  • private – __________________________________________________.
  • forgetful – _________________________________________________.
  • arrival – ___________________________________________________.
  • sadly – ____________________________________________________.

Discussion Questions (try to use some suffixes you just learned)

  1. Talk about a time you hesitated in making a decision. Did the hesitation help you or hurt you?
  2. What gets you excited? Do you consider yourself an excitable person?
  3. When was the last time someone persuaded you into doing something? Did the persuasion help you or hurt you?
  4. What is one way you are different from most people? How do you behave or think differently?
  5. When was the last time you helped somebody? Do you consider yourself a helpful person?

(Image source: 1. http://www.classroomfreebiestoo.com/2012/10/free-mini-prefix-and-suffix-posters.html, 2. https://www.englishclub.com/vocabulary/suffixes.htm, 3. https://www.pinterest.com/jul7788/adjectives-and-adverbs/, 4. http://e-ducativa.catedu.es/44700165/aula/archivos/repositorio//1750/1943/html/SUFFIXES.png, 5. http://e-ducativa.catedu.es/44700165/aula/archivos/repositorio/1750/1951/html/ADJECTIVE_SUFFIXES.png, 6. http://patternbasedwriting.com/elementary_writing_success/paragraph-examples/)

Answer Key:

(1) outer / winds / swirls / spinning / twisting / clouds / balloons / blender / moves / slowly / races / entranced / fully / forgetting / deeds / done / coolness / calmness / does

(2) terrorize

(3) taxable

(4) sadness

(5) teacher

Lesson 11: The Job Interview in English

Recruiter checking the candidate during job interviewDIALOGUE

Practice by reading the dialogue with your tutor. After you are done, switch roles and do it again!

  • Kevin: Dorothy, I have an important interview on Tuesday in English. I’m preparing for it now, despite being really nervous.
  • Dorothy: I think it’s natural to be nervous. My advice is to give short and sweet answers to the interviewer’s questions. You should be direct and to the point.
  • Kevin: Thank you! That’s some great advice. What about industry terms? Should I know some?
  • Dorothy: For sure! If you don’t know some industry terms, the interviewer may think you don’t have enough experience for the job. In addition, I suggest that you ask open-ended questions at the end of the interview.
  • Kevin: Thanks for all your advice and suggestions. I’m going to nail it!





Read the common interview questions below out loud with your tutor.  Then spend 1-2 minutes answering each question. Your tutor will give you corrections and feedback on your answers.

5 common interview questions

  1. Tell me about yourself. Keep your personal life such as family and hobbies out of your answer. The interviewer wants to hear a summary of where you are in your career, especially your most recent job. You should also talk about your work skills that you are good at.
  2. Why are you thinking about leaving your job or why did you leave your last job? Don’t complain about your manager or co-workers. Be positive! You can say that you are looking for a position with more responsibilities, your current company is downsizing or is financially unstable, or other reasons that are true.
  3. Why would you excel at this job? This is your chance to brag a little. Tell the interviewer about your skills and experience that are related to the position you are interviewing for. Example: I am the best person for the position because …………….
  4. What do you know about our company? Prior to the interview, you should research the company. If you don’t know anything about the company, they may think you aren’t interested in the job. Here are some examples of things to know:
    1. What are some of the products or services the company offers?

    2. Have they been in the news lately?

    3. What is the history of the company?

    4. What makes them different from its competitors?

  5. What questions do you have for me? This is normally the last question the interviewer will ask. Be prepared with some questions!
    • Avoid questions about salary and benefits, especially if it’s the first interview.
    • Ask about the culture of the company or to clarify the position further.

    • Ask about the next steps in the hiring process and about the timeline to hear back from them.

    • Ask open-ended questions where the interviewer has to think and answer in his/her own words. Avoid yes and no questions.

Common interview mistakes

Read the diagram below out loud with your tutor. 

Screenshot 2017-01-06 11.27.36.png

Discussion question: Are you guilty of any of these mistakes? Share an anecdote with your tutor.




Go over the vocabulary and expressions below with your tutor. Try using each in a sentence about your own life.

job seeker 📘
interviewee 📘
interviewer 📘
management style 📘
industry terms or jargon 📘
open-ended 📘
trick question 📘
achievement 📘
nail it 📘
short and sweet 📘
strength 📘
weakness 📘
problem solver 📘
career ladder 📘
business reference 📘
fired 📘
punctual 📘
certificate 📘
promotion 📘
downsizing 📘





Using the diagram above about common interview mistakes, answer true or false (T or F). In addition, indicate which number the sentence is talking about.

  • No matter what, you can talk a lot to get your point across. False – number 5 (talking too much)
  • You should use your mobile phone to time yourself when answering question. (1) __________________________
  • You should be punctual for your interview. (2) ___________________
  • Don’t worry if you don’t know a lot about the employer. (3) ______________
  • You should never talk negatively about former bosses and colleagues. (4) ___________________




Pick a word from the vocabulary list above that best defines the meaning of the sentence.

  • When a company releases employees because they want to cut the payroll. downsizing
  • When an interviewer has to answer a question that is not simply a yes or no answer. (5) _________________
  • The person who is being interviewed. (6) __________________
  • A document stating a person has completed an educational course. (7) _____________
  • When your boss tells you that you are no longer working for the company. (8) _____________




Write a sentence using the vocabulary.

  • business reference –  I was asked to provide three business references prior to the interview.
  • trick question – ____________________________________________.
  • nail it – ___________________________________________________.
  • promotion – _______________________________________________.
  • management style – _________________________________________.



If you have remaining time, practice answering more interview questions with your tutor here: https://www.monster.com/career-advice/article/100-potential-interview-questions




(Image source: http://honorigarciaenglish.blogspot.com/2015/08/a-job-interview-tips-and-vocabulary.html)


Answer Key:

(1) False – number 6 (using your phone)

(2) True – number 9 (don’t be too late or too early)

(3) False – number 2 (not researching enough)

(4) True – number 1 (don’t speak poorly of previous employers)

(5) open-ended

(6) interviewee

(7) certificate

(8) fired