Elementary Podcasts: Tess & Ravi

In this episode Tess and Ravi talk about pets, and their guests talk about Didier Drogba and life in New Zealand. You can also follow Carolina’s adventures in the UK as she arrives at her student accommodation in Newcastle. Will she make some new friends?

Listen to the podcast then do the first exercise to check your understanding. If you have more time choose some of the language practice exercises.

Check your understanding

Exercise

Language practice exercises

Task 1

Tess and Ravi

Practise the language you heard in Tess and Ravi’s introduction [00:20].

Exercise

Task 2

Carolina 1

Practise the language you heard in the soap opera about Carolina [14:38].

Exercise

Task 3

Carolina 2

Practise the language you heard in the soap opera about Carolina [14:38].

Exercise

Task 4

Tom the teacher 1

Practise the language you heard in Tom the teacher’s summary [21:10].

Exercise

Task 5

Tom the teacher 2

Practise the language you heard in Tom the teacher’s summary [21:10].

Exercise

Task 6

Tom the teacher 3

Practise the language you heard in Tom the teacher’s summary [21:10].

Exercise

Discussion

Download

Language level

Intermediate: B1
Pre-intermediate: A2

Comments

Hello wangyao,

I can't comment on what your teacher means - for this you will have to ask her. The phrase 'loads of' means the same as 'lots of' or 'a lot of' but it is a very informal phrase which is used really only in informal speech or in very informal writing.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

So can I use it while I am writing a letter to a friend that not very close with me?

Hello wangyao,

I'd need to know more about you and your friend and your relationship to give you good advice on this, but if, for example, you are both relatively young and have a good friend in common, 'loads of' is probably OK. But if you're in doubt, I'd recommend using 'lots of', which is slightly more informal than 'a lot of' and is appropriate in a wider range of context than 'loads of'.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

thank you very much.

Hi LearnEnglish Team,
Some 'conversation in English' exercises are long, but you put them on a line or a paragraph that makes me (also other users) difficult to read and complete the exercise. For example task 1 of all series 1 of the podcast. I think it will be better if you break them down a new line after every person's session done like this:

Glen: Good morning, Stella. Sorry, I'm a bit late. I had to take my dog to the vet.

Stella: Hi. That's OK. The meeting hasn't started yet. I didn't know you had a dog.

Best,
Kenny

Hi Kenny,

Thanks for your comment and I agree completely. Each person's words used to be on separate lines, but when we changed our exercises to make them easier to use on mobile devices, this problem came up and we haven't yet been able to fix it. I'm going to take it up with our technical team and see if we can get it fixed.

In the meantime, I'm sorry for the inconvenience!

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

 

Hi everyone

Today I want to write something about how to learn vocabulary more effective.

In podcast number 5 they recommend a notebook.

A notebook has several disadvantages:

1) You have always the same word order. If the sequence is different you may be not able to remember the words.
2) There are always some words/phrases on a page which you know very well and
some which are difficult for you to remember. If you want to learn the difficult
words you always repeat the easy ones - which is boring and ineffective.
3) If you know a word very well you mustn't repeat it every day. You can repeat it in
this way: - every day - every three days - every two weeks - and so on.

A better way to learn vocabulary is flash cards. You can use a box with five compartments which you can buy in every larger stationery shop in Germany. There is information how to use a box on youtube and on wikipedia (in German). I haven't seen any good descriptions in English though.

There are also computer programs available which are helping you to repeat vocabulary more effective.

When I read the transcript to the podcast I mark the words which I don't know. Then I
look up the words on an online dictionary which also tells me how frequent the word is.
I learn only words or phrases which are among the top 7500 entries.

Thank you very much for your time :)

Hi everyone

I've downloaded the support pack and I'm posting three question about it:

Support Pack; Section 6 Exercise 2

1) Question number. 2 a is correct: I got the train from London.
I've never seen a sentence like this. We give here the starting place ("from London"). I've only seen sentences so far where we give the destination place.

2) Question number. 2 b is false: I went to Newcastle by train.
I've typed "went by train" into the google search page and this phrase does exist. So maybe the word order is incorrect.
The word order is:
WHO -> WHAT -> WHERE -> WHEN -> HOW -> WHY
to Newcastle (=where); by train (= how)
Maybe we write "went by train" together but I've seen example sentences in which they weren't written together.
3) Question number. 4 d is correct: it's seven in the evening
I would expect seven o'clock or seven hundred hours
I can't remember that a number alone is enough to tell the time.

Thank you very much for your time

Hi User_User,

1) Question number. 2 a is correct: I got the train from London.
I've never seen a sentence like this. We give here the starting place ("from London"). I've only seen sentences so far where we give the destination place.

It's perfectly fine to use 'from' with the starting point or 'to' with the destination. It really depends what information is relevant in any particular context. For example, if a person is meeting you at the station then they already know where you are going, but may not know where you are travelling from, and this information may be useful to them in finding the correct platform.

 

2) Question number. 2 b is false: I went to Newcastle by train.
I've typed "went by train" into the google search page and this phrase does exist. So maybe the word order is incorrect.
The word order is:
WHO -> WHAT -> WHERE -> WHEN -> HOW -> WHY
to Newcastle (=where); by train (= how)
Maybe we write "went by train" together but I've seen example sentences in which they weren't written together.

Word order in English can be quite flexible. Both of these are correct sentences:

I went to Newcastle by train.

I went by train to Newcastle.

Of these, the first is the most common.

For particular rhetorical effect you can even put the by-phrase at the beginning:

By train I went to Newcastle, and by car to Edinburgh.

You would be unlikely to see this outside of literary or rhetorical contexts.

3) Question number. 4 d is correct: it's seven in the evening
I would expect seven o'clock or seven hundred hours
I can't remember that a number alone is enough to tell the time.

This is quite common in spoken English when the context makes it clear that we are talking about the time and there is no confusion about am/pm:

Let's meet at eight.

The meeting started at eleven. We're late!

We would only say 'seven hundred hours' in very particular usage such as in military contexts or public announcements (railway stations and so on).

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

hi!
In "I’d like to meet" part Ravi said:
You do know I’m from Manchester, don’t you, Olu?
Is that correctly phrase? I thought that the verb "do" must be on the first position.
Perhaps these two questions have different meanings and I don't understand the difference?
Thanks!

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