Episode 08

Episode 08

In this episode Ravi is planning his holiday and tells Tess all about it. Their guests talk about running in the Lake District and special talents. You can also follow Carolina on her weekend trip away. Will everything go to plan?

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.


Section 1: "Have you ever been to...?”

Tess: Hello everyone and welcome once again to the Learn English Elementary podcast. This is series two and it’s now episode number … erm …
Ravi: Eight. I told you that two minutes ago. Hi everyone. This is series two episode number eight. I’m Ravi and this is …erm...
Tess: Stop it. I’m Tess and we’re your presenters. What’s new with you this week, Ravi?
Ravi: Not much, not much. I’m thinking about my holidays though. I can’t decide where to go.
Tess: Really? You’re going to Scotland, aren’t you?
Ravi: With Chris? Well, yeah, I was going to... Sorry, listeners, Chris is a good friend of mine and we were planning to go on holiday together. No, bad news. Chris has broken his leg so we can’t go to Scotland.
Tess: How did he break his leg?
Ravi: He fell off his bike. Hey, Tess, what should you do if you break your leg in two places?
Tess: I don’t know.
Ravi: Don’t go back to those two places. So, anyway …
Tess: So, what are your plans now?
Ravi: Well, that’s the thing. I’m not sure. I’m thinking of going to Barcelona but ...
Tess: Oh, fantastic. Have you ever been there? I love Spain.
Ravi: No, I haven’t. I’ve heard it’s pretty cool though. You’ve been to Barcelona then?
Tess: Yeah, I went there when I was a student. We had a great time. We did kind of a tour of Spain. We went to Barcelona then to Zaragoza, then Valencia and then all the way down to Granada – Granada’s fantastic – you’d love it.
Ravi: Sounds great but, you know, Tess, when I go on holiday I just want to stay in one place. I don’t want to be catching trains and all that. I want to relax. Do you know what I mean?
Tess: Well, there’s loads of things to do in Barcelona. The nightlife’s great. There are lots of good clothes shops for you. I think you’d really like it.
Ravi: How far is it from the beach?
Tess: Well, I don’t think you go to Barcelona to go to the beach but I think it’s pretty easy to get to the beach You could probably go to the beach for a day trip then go out in the city in the evening.
Ravi: Hmm. Right, I think I’ve decided. I’m going to go to Barcelona. Great. I love deciding where to go. I can start to get excited about my
holidays now.
Tess: Well before you do that, tell us what we’ve got today for the podcast.

Section 2: I'd like to talk about…

Ravi: OK then, let’s get started. We’ve got the quiz, as usual, we’ve got a problem for Carolina and her friends, we’ve got your turn – about talent , I might have a joke for you, lots of stuff – but to start with we’ve got Tim. Hello Tim.
Tim: Hi Ravi

Tess: Hi Tim

Tim: Hello Tess.

Ravi: Tim is here for our regular ‘I’d Like to Talk About’ section. This is where someone comes into the studio to talk about something that’s important to them. A place, a person, a thing, a hobby – it could be anything – anything that’s important to our guest. So, Tim, what are you going to tell us about?
Tim: I’d like to talk about fell running, Ravi.
Ravi: What running?
Tim: Fell running. It’s kind of …
Tess: A fell is a kind of hill, isn’t it. They call hills ‘fells’ in the Lake District.
Tim: Yeah, that’s right. And in other parts of the north of England too. But you can go fell running all over the country, really.
Ravi: So fell running is running up hills, right? I don’t like the sound of it already.
Tim: Well, yes, kind of. It’s a bit more than just running up hills though. It’s running in the countryside – through beautiful, open, mountain scenery – and finding your way and being prepared for the countryside and the weather and … But, yes, there is usually a lot of running uphill.
Tess: How did you get started?
Tim: Sorry – how did I get started or how did fell running get started?
Tess: Well, how did you get started first of all but I’d like to hear how fell running started too.
Tim: Well, people in the countryside have been running up hills for hundreds of years – for fun, for competition, just to see who was fastest, you know, then in the nineteenth century it got a bit more organised and people used to race for money and ….ooh, sorry, you said ‘how did get started’.
Tess: That’s OK, carry on. You can tell us how you got started in a moment.
Tim: Right. Sorry. Anyway, yes, people used to race for money and people would gamble on it.
Ravi: Gambling? Really? Like betting on horses?
Tim: Yeah, people used to bet a lot of money on it. Anyway, lots of the fell races now were started more than a hundred years ago. For most of the twentieth century though, there were two, separate kinds of fell runners; professionals, who got paid for running, and amateurs, who didn’t get paid.
Tess: But you don’t get paid, do you? How did you start fell running?
Tim: No, I’m not good enough to get paid for it. I just do it because I enjoy it. See, I’d always liked running but only on roads and things, then four years ago I moved to the Lake District
Tess: Lucky you. It’s beautiful. We’ve talked about the Lake District in the podcast before. We should tell new listeners that it’s in the north west of England. Anyway, go on.
Tim: Well, the Lake District is kind of the home of fell running in Britain and, like you say, the scenery is so beautiful. I met some people who are fell runners and I started going out for a run with them. It just seemed like a fantastic way to see the countryside. I mean, it was quite hard at first, it’s quite hard work running up hills and, you know, usually there isn’t a road or a path or anything so it can be very wet and dirty, and in winter it can be freezing cold and ..
Ravi: Hang on, it’s cold, wet, dirty – it sounds like loads of fun.
Tim: I know. It’s not always cold and, the thing is, the views from the top of the mountains are so great that you don’t mind getting cold and wet. It’s so great to be out in the countryside without carrying a big backpack or anything and you can just go wherever you want to – you just feel really free.
Tess: And really fit. It sounds like really hard work.
Tim: Well, yes, it’s great exercise too. A great way to keep fit and spend time in the countryside. That’s why I love it.
Tess: You make it sound really nice. Great. Thanks Tim.
Ravi: Hmm. Nice, Tess? I’m not sure it sounds nice. It sounds a bit crazy to me. But, yeah, I can see why you enjoy it, Tim. Thanks for that.
Tim: That’s OK. Are you going to try it Ravi? Want to come for a run?
Ravi: Erm, no, thanks. Football and video games is enough exercise for me.
Tess: Oh, Ravi. Listeners – if you’d like to tell us about what you do to keep fit, why not write it down or record it and send it to us at LearnEnglishPodcast at British council dot org. I’ll say that again - LearnEnglishPodcast - all one word – at - BritishCouncil – all one word DOT org, that’s o-r-g. If we like it, we’ll put it up on the site.
Ravi: Got any fell running pictures we can put up, Tim?
Tim: Erm, yeah, I’m sure I can find some.
Ravi: Great. Thanks.

Section 3 – Quiz

Tess: Now, Ravi, you’re going to like this next one. It’s quiz time, and we’re going to talk to Lydia. Hello, Lydia?
Lydia: Hi.
Tess: Where are you calling from, Lydia? Lydia: I’m in Bournemouth.
Tess: On the south coast? I know it. What’s the weather like in Bournemouth today? Lydia: Really nice, actually. It’s sunny.
Tess: Great. Are you going to go out and enjoy the sunshine?
Lydia: No, unfortunately. I have to go to work later.
Tess: OK. Where do you work?
Lydia: I work in a hotel. I’m a waitress at the moment.
Tess: OK. Well, enjoy the rest of the morning. Are you ready to play Hot Seat?
Lydia: Yep.
Tess: OK then. I’ve got these cards with words on them – they’re all on the same topic – and I’m going to give the cards to Ravi and he’ll explain them to you. You have to guess as many words as you can in a minute, OK?
Lydia: OK – I get it. Tess: Ready, Ravi?
Ravi: Ready and waiting, Tess.
Tess: OK then – here are the cards – and especially for you Ravi, the topic today is holidays. Are you ready for some holiday words, Lydia?
Lydia: I think so.
Tess: Then let’s go. Ravi, you’ve got one minute starting from now.
Ravi: Hi Lydia, the first one – erm – the document …. the little book you need to go to another country, I always nearly forget it … with your photograph in it.
Lydia: Passport?
Ravi: That’s it. Next one. Erm, this is what you do on the beach … erm …
Lydia: Ice cream!
Ravi: Eh? No. Erm. Lying in the sun ..

Tess: You can’t say ‘sun’, Ravi.
Ravi: Shush. On the beach, Lydia, just lying there, reading a book or whatever. I love it. Tess hates it. Trying to get a suntan.
Lydia: Sunbathing.
Ravi: OK. Now, another thing you do on holiday … in a city … looking at the … erm, no, … erm ..visiting the famous places in a city or something … like in London, you’d go to Big Ben and Buckingham Palace and the London Eye and …
Lydia: Is it ‘sightseeing’?
Ravi: It is, well done. How long have we got? OK. Right. This is what you do before you go on holiday – when you put all your clothes and things in your suitcase.
Lydia: Pack.
Ravi: Right. Next one. This is something you wear to …
Lydia: T-shirt?
Ravi: Hang on – something you wear to keep the sun out of your eyes.
Lydia: Oh. Sunglasses.
Ravi: Yes. Now, if you go sightseeing, you have a book to tell you what’s what and it tells you where to stay and where to go and restaurants and things.
Lydia: Is it ‘guidebook’?
Ravi: It is. Next one, Ah.
Tess: Time’s up. Well done, Lydia. Let’s see how many that was. Passport, sunbathing – I’ll let you have sunbathing – erm, passport, sunbathing, sightseeing, pack, sunglasses, guidebook. Six.
Ravi: Is that all? I thought we did more than that.
Tess: Well you said ‘sun’ in ‘sunbathing’ and ‘book’ in guidebook but I’ll let you have six, Ravi.
Ravi: You can’t explain ‘guidebook’ without saying ‘book’. Anyway, well done, Lydia, thanks for playing.
Lydia: Thanks.
Tess: We’ll send you something – have a good day at work.
Lydia: Thanks, I will. Tess & Ravi: Bye, Lydia. Lydia: Bye.
Tess: Let’s move on now – Your Turn, Carolina and Ravi’s joke?
Ravi: Yep.
Tess: All coming up after this.

Section 4: Your turn

Tess: Your Turn is the part of the podcast where we ask people what they think about a topic. Sometimes it’s a serious question, sometimes not so serious but there are always some interesting opinions.
Ravi: This time, the question is …….. What talent would you like to have? Let’s hear what people said.
Voice 1: I would love to be able to dance very well, to dance all the styles, not just, sort of disco dancing, to be able to actually do prof…, more professional dancing, um, but I think I’ve got a long way to go from the stage I’m at now, I’d have to take a lot of lessons, um, but I think it would be fun.
Voice 2: I would like to be, ah, much better at some sort of sport like tennis and, you know, play for my country or win an Olympic gold medal.
Voice 3: I would like to have the talent of playing the piano because I think it’s a very difficult talent to learn … um, you have to, you know, look at the score, the music score, and then you have to control your right hand and at the same time you have to control your left hand and also your feet have to step on the pedals and is actually about, um, controlling your different parts of your body at the same time … and so I think it’s super difficult to do so … and I admire people who have this ability … and I just think that now I am an adult and is very difficult for an adult to learn this ability … and I didn’t learn it when I was little, so I hope that I have this ability now.
Voice 4: I’d like to be able to fly an aeroplane because I would feel very free up in the skies and I can fly to wherever I like.
Voice 5: I’d love to be able to sing, and then I’d go on something like X Factor – I think it’s an amazing journey, and, err, if you win, which I would because I’d have the amazing talent, I’d get a million pounds and be a friend of Simon Cowell.
Voice 6: Yes, if I’m given a chance I would like to have the talent be able to stand in front of large crowds and to move the crowd to, err, positive agenda, for example, moving their hearts so they could mobilize their resources to give to a good cause, for example, err, giving money to the poor in other countries, or to mobilize them to do the right things in their countries, to fight for the right cause.
Tess: What do you think, Ravi?
Ravi: Well, it’s difficult isn’t it when you’re already so talented to think of something .. Tess: I knew you’d say that.
Ravi: Yeah. Only joking. I don’t know really. I wish I could speak a foreign language really well. Maybe that’s the talent I’d like to have.
Tess: Yeah, that’s a good one. We’re interested to hear what you think, too. Why not send us an email or a recording and give us your opinion?

Section 5: Carolina

Ravi: Now though, we’re going to hear from Carolina again. Carolina is a student from Venezuela who’s come to Britain to study at Newcastle university. In every podcast, we find out a little about what she’s been doing.
Tess: Last time we listened, Carolina and Jamie, her boyfriend, and some other friends were going to the countryside to do some conservation work. They were planting hedges – the small trees between fields – to help protect a kind of bird.
Ravi: The black grouse.
Tess: Yeah, that’s it, the black grouse. Anyway, they got lost but found the place in the end. Let’s see what happened next.

Layla: Oh Jamie, that was really funny. You always make me laugh.
Ivan: Oh good – I can see the car. I’m exhausted. I’ve never worked so hard in my life. Every part of my body hurts. All my muscles. Even my teeth hurt.
Jamie: I don’t think you’ve got muscles in your teeth Ivan.
Henry: Yeah. I’m looking forward to getting home and a nice hot shower.
Jamie: And then down the pub for a couple of pints. You fancy that Layla? A drink a bit later tonight?
Layla: Oh yes. That’d be great.
Ivan: You’re very quiet Carolina – didn’t you enjoy it?
Carolina: What? Oh yes, yes, I enjoyed it. I’m just a bit tired that’s all.
Jamie: Uh oh! Henry, look at the car.

Henry: What? Oh no! I don’t believe it!

Carolina: What’s happened?
Henry: Look! Someone’s crashed into the car. Look!
Carolina and Layla: Oh no.
Ivan: But there aren’t any other cars here. This is the only car in the car park.
Henry: Doh! They didn’t stop Ivan! Someone crashed into the car and drove off. [beep]! What a [beep] thing to do.
Layla: Did they leave a note? On the car I mean. Maybe they left their phone number or something.
Henry: No …. nothing. I can’t see a piece of paper or anything. Oh god, what am I going to do?
Ivan: Is it OK to drive? Will it go?
Henry: I think so, but look, the light’s broken. And the side’s all smashed in. Oh god, it’s going to cost a fortune.
Jamie: What about your insurance?
Henry: Oh, I don’t know – I don’t know who the other person is – I don’t know if my insurance will pay. What if they don’t believe me?
Carolina: Well, we have to phone the police. You have to report the accident Henry. Then the police will give you a paper for your insurance.
Layla: That’s a good idea. Phone 999. Or 112. Henry: 999 or 112? Which is it? 999 or 112. Layla: Either. They both work.
Carolina: No – I don’t think so. 999 and 112 are emergency numbers aren’t they? This isn’t an emergency.
Henry: Hah!
Layla: But we need to call the police so….
Jamie: No Layla, Carolina’s right – we can’t phone an emergency number.

Layla: So what’s the number then?

Jamie: I don’t know.
Ivan: I don’t know where we are.
Henry: That’s no surprise Ivan.
Ivan: I mean, I don’t know which police force we should phone. They’ve all got different numbers haven’t they?
Henry: Oh god.
Carolina: Wait a minute. I’ve got a number for the Newcastle police on my phone …
Henry: Did you notice we aren’t in Newcastle?

Carolina: I know. Where’s the number….? They gave it to us at university. They had a session for the foreign students – about police and ambulances and things. Here it is. 03456 043 043.
Layla: But we aren’t in Newcastle
Carolina: I know that Layla. But we can phone them, tell, them where we are and ask them what number we should phone.
Jamie: Brilliant!
Ivan: Well go on then. Phone them Carolina.
Carolina: Oh no, I don’t want to. Can’t one of you do it? I might not understand what they say.

Jamie: I’ll do it. What’s the number?
Carolina: 03456 043 043.
Jamie: Oh hello. Um, someone has crashed into our car in a car park – they didn’t stop or leave a note or anything. My name’s Jamie – Jamie
Lawrence – but um, it’s not my car. Um, look the thing is we’re not in Newcastle, but we want to know the number of the local police. Can you give it to us? Where are we?
Henry: Geltsdale nature reserve car park. Near Hallbankgate.
Jamie: We’re in the car park at Geltsdale nature reserve. Near Hallbankgate. Thanks. OK thanks. Someone get ready to write it down – quick.
Henry: I haven’t got any paper

Layla: I’ve got a pen somewhere

Ivan: OK hang on a minute.

Carolina: Just a minute.
Jamie: 0845 3300 247 Thanks. Did one of you get that?
Carolina: 0845 3300 247. I keyed it into my phone.
Jamie: OK… yes …. yes, we’ll do that. Thank you very much. Phew. Right, you can do the next one Henry. It’s your car.
Henry: Right. Can I borrow your phone? What’s the number again Carolina? Carolina: 0845 3300 247
Henry: Hello? Um yes, I want to report an accident. My name’s Henry Miller. We’re in the car park at the Geltsdale nature reserve. I’m sorry? Oh no, no, no one’s hurt. Well, someone has crashed into my car in the car park and they didn’t stop or leave a note or anything, and the car’s smashed in the side and the light’s broken and we …
Ravi: Well, that’s a pain. Good job Carolina had that number. Do you know the non-emergency number for the police?
Tess: No. Don’t think so. I don’t think I’ve ever called the police. Have you?
Ravi: No, don’t think so, but I’ll tell you what, there’s a police dog in my joke today.
Tess: OK, come on then.

Section 6: The Joke

Ravi: Right, a man’s driving down the road when he sees a sign at the side of the road that says ‘Talking dog for sale – ten pounds’. Well, he thinks to himself, ‘a talking dog, hmm, sounds interesting’ So he stops the car and knocks and on the door and a man answers. ‘Erm, I saw the advertisement for the talking dog’ Yeah, he’s in the back garden. Go and talk to him if you want’. It’s a bit strange, you know, but he goes into the garden and there’s a big dog sitting there, looking quite sad. The man looks at the dog and the dog looks at him and says, ‘Please buy me sir. He’s a terrible owner. He never takes me for a walk, he buys me the cheapest dog food. He doesn’t know what a special dog I am. I used to be a police dog, you know, and I did some very dangerous work for the government that I can’t really talk about. There are lots of stories I could tell you.’ Well, the man, thinks, ‘This is fantastic’ and he goes back to the house to talk to the owner. ‘I’ll buy him’, he says, ‘’but, a talking dog, it’s amazing – why is he only ten pounds?’ ‘Because’, says the owner ‘I’m sick of his lies. He never tells the truth!’
Tess: I’d love to have a talking dog. Actually, a talking cat would be better.
Ravi: All a dog would say is I love you. Can you give me some food?’
Tess: Yeah. That’s true. Right. That’s all we’ve got time for today but Tom the Teacher will be here in a minute so don’t go away. Remember you can write to us at learn English podcast at British council dot org. See you next time. Bye!
Ravi: Bye!

Tom the teacher

Tom: Hi, I’m Tom. At the end of every podcast I talk about some of the language you heard in the programme, and, I hope, talk about ways you can improve your English. I’d like to start today by looking at the verb ‘think’. I’d like to start today by looking at the verb ‘think’. Listen to something Tess said to Ravi about Barcelona
Tess: Well, there’s loads of things to do in Barcelona. The nightlife’s great. There are lots of good clothes shops for you. I think you’d really like it.
Tom: Tess said ‘I think you’d really like it’. She’s giving her opinion. So that’s one way we can use ‘think’ – to give our opinion. Now, listen to something Ravi said a little bit after that.
Ravi: Hmm. Right, I think I’ve decided. I’m going to go to Barcelona.
Tom: Ravi says ‘I think I’ve decided’. He’s saying what his decision is about his holiday. That’s another way we often use ‘think’ – to tell people our decisions. Did you notice that in the examples we’ve just heard both Tess and Ravi used ‘think’ in the present simple tense? When we use ‘think’ to talk about our opinions or decisions, we don’t use progressive tenses (you might call them ‘continuous tenses – same thing). Listen to another example from the podcast.
Tess: Well, I don’t think you go to Barcelona to go to the beach but I think it’s pretty easy to get to the beach
Tom: Tess was giving her opinion and she used ‘think’ twice. The interesting thing is that if we use ‘think’ to talk about a negative idea, we usually make ‘think’ negative, not the other verb. Listen to Tess again.
Tess: Well, I don’t think you go to Barcelona to go to the beach but I think it’s pretty easy to get to the beach
Tom: She says ‘I don’t think you go to Barcelona to go to the beach’. She doesn’t say ‘I think you don’t go to Barcelona’. We make ‘think’ negative. In the Carolina section, we heard Henry say ‘I think so’. Listen.
Henry: I think so, but look, the light’s broken.
Tom: ‘I think so’ is a common expression – and just like Tess said ‘I don’t think you go’, the negative of ‘I think so’ is ‘I don’t think so’ – if you think something is not true. Listen out for it in other podcasts. Now, I want you to listen to one more thing about ‘think’. Listen to Ravi.
Ravi: Well, that’s the thing. I’m not sure. I’m thinking of going to Barcelona but ..
Tom: Now, that time Ravi did use the present progressive tense with ‘think’. He said, ‘I’m thinking of going to Barcelona’. So, what’s the rule? We’ve already said that when we use ‘think’ to talk about our opinions or decisions, we can’t use a progressive tense. But when we use ‘think’ to talk about our plans or our ideas or what’s in our head just at this moment, then we can use the progressive. Ravi’s talking about a plan – so he says, ‘I’m thinking of going to Barcelona’. Listen to another example:
Ravi: Not much, not much. I’m thinking about my holidays though. I can’t decide where to go.
Tom: Again, Ravi, isn’t giving his opinion – he’s talking about what’s in his head at the moment – so he uses the present progressive. Right. I think it’s time to move on to the next thing I want to talk about. Listen to the words that were in the quiz in this podcast:

Tess: Time’s up. Well done, Lydia. Let’s see how many that was. Passport, sunbathing – I’ll let you have sunbathing – erm, passport, sunbathing, sightseeing, pack, sunglasses, guidebook. Six.
Tom: Did you notice anything about some of the words? Four of them were what we call ‘compound words’ – sunbathing, sightseeing, sunglasses, guidebook. Compound words are words that are made up of two words put together. So sunglasses are glasses you wear in the sun, a guidebook is a book that you use as a guide, sightseeing means seeing the sights! There are lots of these compound words in English and they’re useful for learners because you can usually work out the meaning – if you know what glasses are and you know what sun is, you can guess what sunglasses are! It’s a good idea to keep these words together in your vocabulary notebook – sunglasses, sunbathing, sun hat, sun cream and so on. Be careful though – sometimes it’s one word, sometimes it’s two words and sometimes it has a hyphen – you need to remember how to write each new compound word you learn.
Now, usually, each time I talk to you, I tell you something from the podcast that you can try to use in your English. This time, though, I want to talk about something for you not to try for yourself. When Carolina and her friends were at the nature reserve, someone drove into Henry’s car then drove away. Listen to Henry’s reaction:
Henry: Look! Someone’s crashed into the car. Look!
Carolina and Layla: Oh no.
Ivan: But there aren’t any other cars here. This is the only car in the car park.
Henry: Doh! They didn’t stop Ivan! Someone crashed into the car and drove off. [beep]! What a [beep] thing to do.
Tom: Henry was quite upset and he used two words we had to beep out. You can guess what kind of words they were, though, I’m sure. We call this kind of word ‘swear words’ and, like most languages, English has several of them. You might know some of them already. My advice to people who are learning English though is don’t try to use swearwords in English. Some words are very strong and people will be upset to hear you use them. And it’s difficult to know which words are worse. Some people will think a word is OK but other people might be very upset to hear you use it. The safest thing is not to try to use swear words at all. If you do want something to try this week, how about this?
Tess: OK then. I’ve got these cards with words on them – they’re all on the same topic – and I’m going to give the cards to Ravi and he’ll explain them to you. You have to guess as many words as you can in a minute, OK?

Lydia: OK – I get it.
Tom: Lydia said ‘I get it’. She understood the rules of the game, so ‘I get it’ just means – ‘yes, I understand’. try it yourself this week. Right. I’m going to stop there. I’ll talk to you all again next time. Remember you can write to me about any language that you noticed in this podcast. The address is LearnEnglishPodcast AT BritishCouncil DOT org. In a moment you’ll hear the address for the website where you can read everything you’ve heard in this podcast. You can also find some practice exercises to do online and a Support Pack that you can print. Right. That’s all for this time. Bye for now! See you next time.

Check your understanding


Tess and Ravi

Practise the language you heard in Tess and Ravi’s introduction [00:24].

Task 1



Practise the language you heard in the soap opera about Carolina [14:51].

Task 1


Task 2


Tom the teacher

Practise the language you heard in Tom the teacher’s summary [24:24].

Task 1


Task 2


Task 3



Support pack323.63 KB
Transcript179.1 KB

Language level

Average: 4.5 (8 votes)
Profile picture for user jpkeiros

Submitted by jpkeiros on Fri, 17/11/2023 - 14:09


Consultation 2: In the next sentence, the position of the word "time" is confusing to me.
Tess: Yeah. That’s true. Right. That’s all we’ve got time for today .....
Shouldn´t be: That´s all the time we´ve got for today?

Thanks in advance.

Hello jpkeiros,

There are two distinct phrases here.

'That’s all we’ve got time for today' means 'We don't have any more time for this'.

You could use several other nouns here in place of time, such as money, space or room.


Your suggestion is a correct sentence and in this context could be used interchangeably. As above, you could replace 'time' with other nouns - here the choice is very wide:

That's all the time/money/coffee (etc) we've got.

Those are all the ideas/chairs/books/seats (etc) we've got.



The LearnEnglish Team

Profile picture for user jpkeiros

Submitted by jpkeiros on Fri, 17/11/2023 - 14:06


Good morning there,

Consultation: I have a doubt about the next sentence
Tess: Time’s up. Well done, Lydia. Let’s see how many that was .....
Shouldn´t be: how many those are?

Hello jpkeiros,

Logically, a plural would fit better here since 'many' suggests it. However, speakers often use 'was' and 'were' interchangeably in sentences like this as they could be thinking about the number (implying plural) or the result in the sense of let's see what your result was' (implying singular - Your result was 45 - well done!).



The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by intestine on Fri, 09/06/2023 - 09:35


Hello, sir. When I come across some place or building names, I feel confused because some of them have "the" while others don't. For example, "Tower Bridge","Big Ben",“Westminster Abbey”, and “Buckingham Palace” don't have “the”, while “the London Eye” and “the Imperial Palace” do. Could you help me understand why and when to use “the” with place and building names in English? Thank you very much for your help.

Hello intestine,

As a general rule, 'the' is used before the names of buildings, but, as you've noticed, there are many exceptions to this.

We generally do not use 'the' before stations, airports and universities without the word 'of' in them (e.g. Oxford University), but when 'of' is in the name, we generally do (e.g. the University of Virginia).

I'm afraid I don't know of any other useful rules. There may be some that could help, but as far as I know there is not simple rule that will explain all or even most cases.

I'm sorry not to have better news!

All the best,
LearnEnglish team

Submitted by intestine on Mon, 05/06/2023 - 10:45


Hello. in this episode,Ravi said, "Football and video games is enough exercise for me." Shouldn't it be "are instead of "is" since " football and video games" is plural? Could you clarify this for me? Thank you.

Hi intestine,

Even when there are two things, if the speaker considers them to make up a single unit, you can use "is" (i.e., a singular verb form). A clearer example is fish and chips - we can say Fish and chips is a popular dish if we think of fish and chips as one combined thing, rather than two separate components. So, Ravi is thinking of football and video games in a combined way, rather than as separate activities.

It would also be fine to use "are" here!


LearnEnglish team

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Submitted by Hannalara on Wed, 08/02/2023 - 22:56


I'd love to be able to speak English fluently and very well. I want to learn English more easily and faster.