Spelling errors make a poor impression! Learn about some common mistakes to avoid.

Proofreading

When you write quickly, it is easy to make mistakes. Always check your email carefully before you send it. It is a good idea to keep a list of words you have spelled wrongly in the past. Use this list to check that you have spelled them correctly. Also, use your computer's spell checker if you can. This will automatically correct spellings for you. Finally, here are a few other things to check for.

Words with similar sounds

Some words sound the same in English but have different spelling:

*Their not *hear yet. > They're not here yet.
*Wear do you want to *meat? > Where do you want to meet?

Short words

These are easy to spell, but they are also easy to spell incorrectly. Short words are the ones we type most quickly. It's easy to type some of the letters in the wrong order.

a lot *fo mistakes > of
Thank you *fro your letter > for
at *hte meeting > the

Silent letters

Many words that are common in emails have silent letters. Here are some examples (the silent letters are underlined):

know    write    wrong    forward    thought    right    interesting    Wednesday    Bye

Grammar: subject/verb agreement

You should always check that you have used the right verb in the right form. A common mistake is to forget the -s in the 3rd person singular (he/she/it).

The training *start at 9 a.m. > starts
My plane *leave at 4.35. > leaves
How long *do it take? > does
How many times *have he been here? > has

Punctuation

Remember to start every sentence with a capital letter, and to use a capital letter for place names, days, months, names, etc.

We will be in Newcastle with Mrs Hamilton on March the 4th, in Manchester with Dr Kassu on Tuesday the 5th, and Birmingham with Andrea Este on the Thursday.

We usually use commas when opening and closing emails, use a full stop at the end of a sentence and a capital letter at the start of a sentence. An exclamation mark (!) is OK in a friendly email, but it's better not to use them in formal emails.

Hi Mark,
Thank you very much for all your help this week. You must be glad it's the weekend!
With best regards,
Pattie

Task 1

Exercise

 

 

Here are the correctly spelt words: Hello, I look forward to, at the meeting, English lesson, let me know, next week, Dear John, With best regards, in the morning

Task 2

Task 3

Task 4

Télécharger

Language level

Intermediate: B1

Comments

Dear Sir,

Please see the following sentences. I would like to know which of the following sentences is correct. After "videos" "gives" or "give" is apt. In English this type of doubts always confusing me. Kindly enlighten me on this. I know the rules regarding noun and verb but yet sometimes I am confused. Kindly tell me which is the subject here.

1) Watching your videos gives me lots of confidence.

2) Watching your videos give me lots of confidence.

Thank you.

Hello Aniyanmon

The gerund 'watching' in 'watching your videos' is singular, so 1 is correct here.

All the best

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

Thank you sir.

Hello,

I live in the UK and am currently employed in the insurance sector. I am not a native speaker, and today, one of my British colleagues in the office suggested that a sentence I had written as a part of an email to a customer was wrong. Luckily, I asked her to proofread it before sending it.

The sentence in question was 'We note that you have no objections to the removal of the implicated in the current damage trees.' My colleague said that the sentence did not make any sense.

I am confused as to what exactly is wrong with the sentence, so I was hoping that you might be able to help.

Kind regards,

Mariyan

Hello Mariyan

I'm afraid I don't understand what the sentence means, either, but I put this down more to not knowing enough about the insurance industry. For example, is a 'damage tree' a kind of insurance term? Or are you speaking about some trees that were damaged? If it's the latter, then it should be 'damaged trees'. I might also say 'implicated parties' if that's referring to people. In short, if you could explain what you want this sentence to communicate in other words, we'll be happy to help you understand it.

All the best
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello Kirk,

Thank you for your response and apologies for the delay in responding.

I will try to explain myself. The sentence relates to property damage caused by trees situated near low-rise buildings. Trees absorb the water in clay soils, which causes the shrinking of these soils. When property damage has already occurred, the trees need to be removed to stop their negative influence on the soils. In such instances, the owner of a tree has to give their consent for its removal before any tree work is carried out.

What I wanted to say, then, was that a party (natural person) had no objections to the removal of their own trees, implicated in the damage caused to their neighbours' property. It seems, however, that the meaning of my sentence in question was not particularly clear.

Therefore, I would be grateful if you could offer some ways of improving its meaning.

Best regards,

Mariyan

Hi Mariyan

Thanks for the detailed explanation -- that makes much more sense now. If it were me, I'd probably say something like 'We understand that you do not object to the removal of the trees implicated in the damage.' I'm not sure if that's specific enough or not, as perhaps you mean there are several trees that could cause damage in the future but only one is currently slated for removal? If that's the case, then perhaps '... to the removal of the tree that has caused the current damage' would be better.

In any case, I expect your colleagues could help you better than I can, seeing as they use this sort of language every day. I must say, in general, your writing (or at least the little I've seen of it in your two posts) is very clear and sounds perfectly natural to me -- well done!

I hope this helps.

All the best

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

But now, i know it's very important to take attention when you write an email before you send it. And verify if something is bad.

That was very important for me,and i am so happy to make exercises. Because, i usually make mistakes about spelling , punctuation...

Which is proper: Each of you is/are allowed to make a presentation.

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