Daily Doses of English Listing


Here is a searchable list of all my Daily Doses of English from 2010-2011.

You can find them by title or by searching for a word in the description.

Daily Dose NameDescription
-gryDo we say "angry with" or "angry at"? This Daily Dose of English seeks to give you the answer. Angry and hungry both end in -gry, but don't be angry with me if you can't find the third word in the English language.
-ishPrefixes and suffixes (those little bits we add to the beginning or end of words) play a very important role in English. Learn these suffixes and prefixes and you can dramatically increase your vocabulary. The Daily Dose of English looks at the rather informal suffix, -ish, which is a great way to approximate.
5WHIn 1902, the famous British writer Rudyard Kipling wrote: I keep six honest serving-men (They taught me all I knew); Their names are What and Why and When And How and Where and Who. The 5WH, as they are known, are the open question words in English. With them you can get any information about anything that you want or need. Open questions are questions that cannot be answered by a simple yes or no.
A Few, Few, A Little, LittleThere's little difference between little and a little and there are few differences between few and a few. This video tells you what the differences are.
A Jar of CaviarEven the simplest of things can give us some useful vocabulary and verbs in English. This video gives you the vocabulary and some verbs that we use when talking about jars and how to open them.
A or BYou seem to like the quiz format, so I'm going to make another one today. Be warned, this is a very challenging Daily Dose of English. I'm going to say some pairs of sentences. I want you to listen carefully and decide which of the sentences, 1 or 2, goes with the written sentences, A or B.
Advice AdviseTwo words that cause confusion for students of English - Advise and Advice. Full typescript and podcast available.
Alarms Go OffWe turn lights on to make them work, but alarms go off when they work. Odd, isn't it?
AlaskaA lot of humour in English comes from the way words can mean more than one thing, or the way that words can seem to change their meaning depending on their pronunciation. This Daily Dose of English shows how this happens in an old joke about Alaska.
AlienToday's Dose is the request of Alex from Russia. She's asked "Dear Richard, could you make a video about universe, space, aliens? Alex has also kindly supplied a list of suggested vocabulary. As I've said to Alex in the past, I figured that if aliens did visit the Earth, they would need to learn to communicate. The best way for them to communicate would be in English. The best way for them to master the language would be to take private lessons with me online. In no time at all they could have a level of English sufficient for them to say... "Take me to your leader!" So, if you're watching out there on the edges of the solar system, I'm looking forward to hearing from you soon. You can easily book lessons through my online school at Linguaspectrum.com.
All Together and AltogetherThere are two terms which are altogether confusing, even for native speakers. They are all together and altogether. After this Daily Dose of English you should be altogether more confident about using them correctly.
Animal SoundsWe speak, but what do animals do? This Daily Dose of English answers that question, at least as far as sheep, dogs, ravens, crows, rooks, chickens, hens, frogs, owls, cats, ducks, pigs and horses go.
Anything or NothingThis request is from Teacher Kelly (Kelly Reis) from Brazil. Teacher Kelly from Brazil has posted the following request for a Daily Dose of English... I'd like a video about any/some/no - thing/body/one/where... Well, Teacher Kelly from Brazil, if anybody can give you what you want, it's me. There's nothing better than asking a good question when you want the answer to something, is there? And as a teacher, there's nothing more satisfying than giving everyone the right answer to something, and that means everything to me. There's nowhere better than somewhere like a Daily Dose of English to give everyone the answers to something that nobody else anywhere is giving anybody. These words do cause something of a problem for students of English everywhere. In fact, anywhere you find anybody learning English you'll find somebody who knows nothing about them.
ArchaicAnderson from Brazil has made a video request for a Daily Dose of English. Over to you, Anderson. Hello teacher, first of all I'd like to say that I'm addicted to your Daily Dose... and... I'd like to know more about archaic words like thou, thee, viz., etc., etc. That's it, thanks. Archaic words are words rarely used in English today, except when the user wants to create a deliberate dramatic or poetic effect. However, in Northern English and Scots English, thou is still used as the second person singular pronoun. And the popularity of Shakespeare ensures that many archaic terms are not forgotten.
ArmHello and welcome to another Daily Dose of English. Today's Daily Dose of English is about... Arm Arm yourselves, men! We're going into battle. Arms are the things which our hands are attached to, and arms is also the term for weapons. Guns, knives, swords, spears, bows and arrows are all arms. And arm is used in many idiomatic expressions in English, too. An idiom is an expression whose meaning is difficult to get from the words alone.
AyeI is the first person singular pronoun. I am. I am Richard. I am making this video. I make Daily Doses of English. I hope you like them. But is there more to I than meets the eye? Aye, there is. Eyes are what we see with. I have two eyes. My eyes are greeny blue. This means they're not quite green and they're not quite blue. They're in between, really. Now, there's a third aye. And I'm not talking about a New Age, spiritualist eye of wisdom. I'm talking about the word aye. In Northern British English, the word aye is used to say yes. That's why I sometimes say aye when I mean yes.
BathWhy do words like bath, grass, laugh and pass have different pronunciations? Its all down to the North-South divide in the UK and the changes that have been taking place over the past 400+ years in the language of the southern UK. This Daily Dose of English will tell you all you need to know.
BearToday's Daily Dose of English shows you how to survive a bear attack using nothing more than a pair of trainers.
BeltBelt is something with which you hold up your trousers. It's also a word that is used in some common expressions in English. Today, we're going to have a quiz about some expressions in English that use the word belt. I'll give you the correct answers at the end of this Daily Dose of English. There will be some sentences on the right that will give you some examples of how each expression is used. Use these to help you choose the right answer. Pause the video while you read them.
BigBig is an overused and overworked adjective that doesn't really tell us much. I thought I would introduce you to some more expressive alternatives to big in this Daily Dose of English. I went for a walk to the park today and bumped into a couple of plane spotters, Paco and his son Francisco. Now, what brings plane spotters to the park to watch aircraft, apart from the fact that the park is right next to the airport. The reason is huge planes like this Iberia Airbus A340 practising landings at Seville airport, Spain.
BirdHere's a bird's eye view of the word bird. Bird can mean any feathered animal. Here are some photos of birds that I have taken over the years. Birds of a feather means two or more people who are very similar in many ways. If I say that something is strictly for the birds, I mean that it is unimportant or uninteresting or useless. We can kill two birds with one stone. That's to do two things at the same time. Here I'm teaching you English and showing you some nice pictures of birds at the same time.
BloodyThis Daily Dose of English is for Gerardo in Argentina. We were talking about the word sod this morning. Sod is a mild expletive. Expletives are swear words. Gerardo suggested that I make a Daily Dose of English about those expletives that aren't too offensive. I thought, for crying out loud, what a great idea! Because people swear all the time, don't you? Swearing is a way of releasing tension in a non-aggressive, non-violent way. Interestingly, 3% of conversations at work and 13% of day-to-day conversations involve swearing to some degree. Then I thought, I'm going to bloody well make this video. Interestingly, bloody is the most frequently used expletive by women and the second most frequently used by men.
BoneOur bones are the things that hold us up. They are the scaffolding on which our bodies are built. Bone is also used in many English idioms. Idioms are expressions whose meaning is not always clear from the words alone.
BookThere are many expressions in English that are associated with books. You can book a class with me online. You can book a table in a restaurant. You can book cinema tickets. However, there are some other expressions that you might not be familiar with, yet are used frequently. "Doing things by the book", is one of them. "Throw the book at someone" is another. "Take a leaf out of someone's book" is another. This video will help you to learn and use many of these expressions.
BootToday we're going to take a look at the word boot. There are a surprising number of uses of the word boot in English. When I was in the military, many years ago, I remember always having to bull my boots. This involved polishing the toecaps so that they were as bright and shiny as black mirrors. What a waste of time! A load of bull, really. I think it put me off polishing my boots and shoes forever, and I can't remember when I last opened a tin of shoe polish.
BrushEver had a brush with the law or even death? Need to brush up your English skills? Don't know the difference between a comb and a brush? This could be just the video you are looking for.
BubbleBubbles are tiny spheres of gas. They are often seen rising up through liquids like lemonade, champagne and beer. These bubbles are rising up through a glass of Spanish cider - a drink made from the fermented juice of apples. We call this a sparkling cider. Lemonade is also a sparkling, or fizzy drink. The fizz refers to the bubbles. We also call non-alcoholic fizzy drinks pop. This Daily Dose will tell you all you need to know about bubbles.
BullfightI went to a bullfight the other day, the first time since I arrived in Seville eight years ago. I was invited to go by a friend and saw it as an opportunity to witness firsthand one of the most famous traditions of Spain. I took many photographs during the bullfight and decided that I would share them with you in this Daily Dose of English. I should warn you that you may find some of the images disturbing. If you are likely to be upset by the sight of blood or the killing of a bull, please don't watch this Daily Dose.
BumIt's an interesting word, bum, and It has several meanings. In British English, the bum is the part of your body that you sit on. That is, your buttocks. He's so lazy! What he really needs is a kick up the bum.
CameraA new Daily Dose of English using my new HD camera. I thought I would try it out and make a lesson about vocabulary that uses camera and other words associated with it.
Cardinal or OrdinalThis Daily Dose of English looks at the two types of numbers we normally use in day to day life - cardinal numbers and ordinal numbers.
CatI've really let the cat out of the bag with this Daily Dose of English. I wonder if the fact that I forgot to include the expression "put the cat among the pigeons" will go against me? Or will I still be the cat's whiskers as far as online English teaching goes? Anyway, I'm no scaredy cat, so who cares. I haven't got a cat in hell's chance of getting everything right all of the time.
CatchCatch is an irregular verb. An irregular verb is a verb that does not add -ed to the root verb to form the past simple and the past participle. You have to learn each irregular verb individually. The infinitive form is to catch. The past simple form is caught. The past participle form is caught. Catch, caught, caught. Catch has several meanings.
Caught a ColdRichard caught a cold and made good use of it to give some of the common terms we use to talk about colds. Don't worry, it's only a 24 hour bug and it hasn't stopped me bringing you your daily dose of English.
ChangeI was speaking with one of my students, Rebeca, the other day and we were discussing the many meanings of the word charge. She thought I should make a Daily Dose of English about it. There are many common words in English that have several very different meanings. Charge is one of them. Charge can be a noun or a verb. Often the verb form follows from the noun form.
Cheer UpHello and welcome to another Daily Dose of English. And today's Daily Dose is rather special. It's a video request from two lovely ladies in Ukraine. The best thing I can do is hand over to them. Hello, Richard. My name is Tanya. I'm from Kyiv, Ukraine. My friend Nathalie and I have met today to make a request to Daily Dose of English. Meet Nathalie. Hello. Hi, dear. What's up? I feel somewhat down in the dumps, you know? I see. So, here is the question. How can I cheer up my friend? We expect to hear from you some expressions how to cheer someone up. Thank you. Cheers!
ChopI can chop down a tree and I can chop up a tree. And the fact I can chop it down and chop it up gave me the idea that chop might be a useful word to teach in a Daily Dose of English.
ClothesCloth, clothes, or clothing, suit or dress, verb or noun? These are words that typically confuse students. This Daily Dose of English aims to make them less confusing to all.
ClumsyMany, many, many, many years ago, I knew a girl who was famous for her clumsiness. Everything she did she did clumsily. She was a clumsy girl. Everything she touched, she broke. Everything she picked up, she dropped. She was famous for her clumsiness.
CockneyToday's Daily Dose is in response to a video request from Christophe in France. "Hello Richard. My name is Christophe and I live in France. Thank you for this very innovative way of teaching English. Richard, could you tell us more about Cockney. A few years ago I went to London and British fans taught me some very funny Cockney expressions. Thank you." Before I start, I should point out that I am not a Cockney. Cockney is a term used to define a geographic area known as the East End of London. Linguistically, that is from a language point of view, it refers to the type of English spoken by the people who live in the East End.
Come AcrossCome across is a phrasal verb with two different meanings. It can mean to find something by chance. Come across can also mean to appear to be something or to make an impression on someone.
Come or GoIf you don't know whether you're coming or going when it comes to come and go, then this video is for you. It's all about direction and location. I've given you plenty of examples to see how it all works.
Computer SymbolsIn the computer age in which we now live it is important to be able to name the symbols you find on your keyboard. These include the @ symbol, the $ sign, the \ and more. If you don't know your curly brace from your square bracket, or your caret from your ampersand, then this is the Daily Dose of English that you have been looking for.
CouldGolnoosh from Malaysia has made today's request for a Daily Dose of English. Thanks for writing in, Golnoosh, and thanks for your photograph. Here is what Golnoosh asked... Hi, please add a dose about may/might/could (modal verbs). It's confusing to me sometimes. Furthermore, please make a lesson about "get" and its usage as it has different meanings in English. I found it puzzling. Cheers, Golnoosh I'll take a look at the verb get in a future Daily Dose of English. Many students have asked about this verb. In this video, I'm going to focus on the modal verb, could.
Countable UncountableCountable and uncountable nouns cause plenty of problems for students. In this video I hope to quickly show how we deal with them.
DisbeliefHow do you tell someone that you don't believe what they're telling you? There are many ways in English from "Your pulling my leg" to "Get away!" This video will give you the most useful expressions.
Do For EmphasisI do so like it when people ask me to make an interesting video. I did enjoy receiving a request from Rustam from Azerbaijan. This Daily Dose of English demonstrates how we use the verb "do" to add emphasis, and shows how intonation is important in showing meaning, too.
Doctor DoctorToday's Daily Dose is a request from Hemant Kumar Kachhawa in India. Hemant asks... "My question is how can we pronounce the names of different doctors according to their specialisation?" Yes, Hemant, there are many types of doctor in the world and many who specialise in a particular area of medicine have difficult titles. The titles are normally based on the Latin or Greek words used to describe their area of work.
DogDogs are man's best friend, which probably accounts for there being so many expressions connected with them. I've doggedly gone after as many of these expressions that I could think of and have put them in this Daily Dose of English. You need never be afraid of dogs again, at least not when they are in English sentences.
Don't Worry, Be Happy!Today's request comes from someone who's no stranger to a Daily Dose of English. "Hello Richard. How are you today? I wish you would help me this time, too. You know you're my dear teacher. I have to pass my baccalaureate exam this year, so I'm shaking with fear. But this is not the problem. Well, the real trouble that is facing me is how to express all that bad emotion, viz fear and stress. Thanks a lot." I fear I will not be able to cover all of the vocabulary in this Daily Dose of English, but I will do my best.
DriveDrive is an irregular verb. An irregular verb is a verb that does not add -ed to the root verb to form the past simple and past participle. You have to learn each irregular verb individually. The infinitive form is to drive. The past simple form is drove. The past participle form is driven. Drive, drove, driven.
Each Other - One AnotherToday's request comes from Mohamed Farouk in Cairo, Egypt. He asks, I believe there's a difference between each other and one another. When I looked them up in an advanced learner's dictionary there was no difference. Could you please help us know the rule here? So I did a little bit of research with the Google Ngram Viewer and the British National Corpus. Both agreed with each other and told me what I had suspected: each other is much more commonly used than one another.
EatGot a weight problem? Need to shed a few pounds? Eating more than you should? Can't seem to satisfy that appetite? We have a saying in English - to eat like a horse. This means that you eat a lot. I think we should change the saying to eat like a caterpillar.
Either NeitherEither and neither are two words that confuse even native English speakers. Both have two accepted pronunciations and both are used to talk about similar things. This video will help you to use these two words, and pronounce them correctly.
Everyday SoundsToday, I'm looking at everyday sounds and what we call them. The beep of a car horn, or the toot of a car horn. The beeping of an alarm clock. The ticking of a clock. The chiming of a clock. A gunshot. The gurgling of a stream. The ringing of an alarm going off. The splash of a stone in water. The ringing of a phone. The throb of an engine. The toot of a horn. The whirr of machinery. The slamming of a door. The squeak of a wooden door.
Excess AccessAccess and excess are two words that cause problems even for native speakers. Access means the right of entry, a way of entering. It can be used as noun and as a verb. How do I gain entry to the system? How do I get access to this computer system? This password will let you enter the system. This password will give you access. Now, access has the stress on the first syllable - access. But, excess has the accent on the second syllable. The word stress falls on -cess - excess. Excess is either a noun or an adjective. It means too much of something.
Expressing DislikesExpressing dislikes is now much easier thanks to this Daily Dose of English.
Expressing LikesTired of always having to say "like" when you want to express that you like something. Well, this video gives you many other ways to say "I like". Expressions such as "I'm fond of", "I adore", "I fancy", "I get a kick out of", "I'm thrilled with", "I realy fancy", "I'm crazy for", "I'm mad about" and more.
FaceDo you know what your philtrum is? I thought not. That's why I created this Daily Dose of English. It will not only tell you where your philtrum is, but also where your zygoma and your cheeks are, where your pinna is, and why you have a bridge and corners on your face.
FasterHow do you tell someone to move faster in English? This Daily Dose of English tells you many of the most common ways to tell someone to get a move on.
FindFind... You can find a job. You can find fortune. You can find happiness. You can find out. This means to discover. Let's find out how we can use find, shall we?
FingersThis short lesson tells you the names of the fingers in English. It also gives you a common expression - "to know something like the back of your hand".
FlyI was up at the airport today, looking at the planes and I thought "fly", there's a good theme for a Daily Dose of English. So, here goes. Planes fly, birds fly and flies fly, too. When flies fly together, we call that a swarm of flies. When birds fly together, we call it a flock of birds. When planes fly together, usually military planes, we call it a flight. Time can fly, too. We say "Time flies". Phew! Doesn't time fly? It means it goes by very, very quickly. In fact, time flies like an arrow; fruit flies like a banana. But that's a joke.
For a LarkFor a lark is a common English idiom. This Daily Dose of English will help you to use it. This is the first Daily Dose of English to have a typescript and a podcast.
For Me To MeThis Daily Dose of English answers a video request from Dato in Georgia. He wanted to know how we use "for" and "to" with "me". It's much more complicated than it first seems. "For" and "to" are used in so many ways, that I thought it would be better if I presented some examples of their usage. You will then be able to see how they are used.
ForeverAm I going to make Daily Doses of English forever? Forever is a long time. I've been making them forever. They take forever to make. But perhaps Daily Doses of English have changed forever the way you learn English? Two expressions we use with forever are... forever and ever - which means for a long time forever and a day - which also means for a long time And another word that means the same as forever is eternity. You can use eternity in the same way as forever. And infinity means to have no limit, to be boundless. We can't use infinity in the same way as we use forever and eternity.
FrequencyToday's request comes from Alex in Moscow, Russia. She asks: Could you make a video about words we use to say how often something happens? Well, a good way to begin would be for me to tell you about the making of these Daily Doses of English. I have to manage my time carefully. A lot of my time is spent teaching English to students around the world, but I don't teach students all the time. I'm not teaching on Skype the whole time. I also have to find time to make these videos.
From the Cradle to the GraveMany things happen to us between the cradle and the grave. This video give you some of the vocabulary that you need to talk about age and getting older.
FungiI wanted to share some images from a mushroom hunt I went on recently. This video is all about fungi and is an insight into life in the mountains in the south of Spain. If you don't know your mushrooms from your toadstools, you should take a look at this video.
GladiatorThis fictional conversation with one of the great actors of our times demonstrates how in normal speech the sounds of one word merge with those of the following to produce a single "speech unit". It also shows why spoken English is sometimes very difficult to understand for non-native speakers of English.
GlassesMany people wear glasses and many more will as they get older. This has happened to me, and I wanted to share with you some of the language we use with the wearing of glasses.
Glottal StopToday's request comes from Belkada Adel in Algeria. He's sent me a voice request through the Daily Dose of English request form at Linguaspectrum. "Hello Richard. I am Belkada Adel from Algeria and I'd like to ask you about the glottal stop. Could you help me in using it by giving me rules? Thank you, my dear teacher. Goodbye." Now that's an interesting question. It's probably also left a lot of viewers scratching their heads asking themselves "What on earth is a glottal stop?" It's probably best if I tell you what a glottal stop is before I tell you how to use it.
GobbleGobble up and gobble down are phrasal verbs. Gobble down means to eat something very quickly and with enthusiasm. Kids gobble down sweets, given half a chance. Gobble down is a separable phrasal verb. This means that you can separate the verb gobble from the particle, down. Kids gobble sweets down, given half a chance.
GoldHello and welcome to another Daily Dose of English. Today's request comes from a regular star of a Daily Dose of English. It's Teacher Kelly from Brazil. Today, teacher Kelly's request goes as follows: "When to use gold or golden is confusing sometimes." Well, this is a golden opportunity for me to show you the golden rule to follow when using gold or golden.
Good Morning Evening NightWhen do you use the greetings, Good morning, Good afternoon, Good evening and Good night. This video will put you right.
GossipGossip is a verb and a noun. The noun form means someone who likes to gossip. In the noun form it is also the gossip itself. But what is gossip? Gossip can have two main meanings. Gossip can be a light conversation about nothing in particular. Gossip can also have a more negative meaning as the malicious discussion of others.
HandI have to hand it to Nhi, my student in Australia, who handed me a handly little story to use as the basis of today's Daily Dose of English. I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed making it.
HatDon't keep this Daily Dose of English under your hat. It's a look at all the expressions we use with the word "hat".
Hay FeverIf my eyes look a little red today, and my voice sounds as if I have a cold, it's because it's hay fever season once again, and I suffer with this condition. Hay fever is also called allergic rhinitis or pollenosis. It is caused by an allergic reaction to pollen. Pollen is the stuff that plants make in order to reproduce. In this footage, you can see a bee carrying huge amounts of pollen in its pollen baskets on its legs. Bees use pollen to make honey. I use pollen to make my nose run, my eyes sore and provoke sneezing. Luckily, I suffer from seasonal hay fever. This means that I am only affected during a few weeks when certain plants are producing pollen in large amounts. That time is now.
HeadlinesToday, we're going to have a quiz. A newspaper headlines quiz. Now, Newspaper headlines are written by journalists who are working both quickly and with limited space. They have to present the theme of the story as briefly as possible. This leads to some interesting ideas being presented. Here are some newspaper headlines gathered from various sources. They are all ambiguous because of different possible meanings of the words. Try this quiz and see if you can get them all right. Write your answers down on a piece of paper and check your answers at the end.
Here/There you areThe two fixed expressions, "Here you are" and "There you are" have several uses. If I give you something... some money or a gift or anything else, I can say, "Here you are" or "There you are". If I find you, I can say, "Here you are" or "There you are". This Daily Dose of English helps you make sense of both expressions.
Higgledy-PiggledyEnglish has many compound words that are loved by children because they're easy to remember and they're enjoyed by adults because they have a funny sound about them because both the words in the compound sound very similar. For example, higgledly-piggledy. This is used in a popular children's nursery rhyme.
High TallLukasz, and I'm not even going to try to pronounce the surname, Myslicki, from Poland has asked: "Could you explain what the difference is between the words high and tall?" Well, that's a good question and that's why I decided to make today's Daily Dose of English about it. It's also a question that I have been asked many times by many students. Unfortunately, it's not nearly as easy to answer as it might at first seem. In fact, it's quite a tall order. Let's first have a look at some words and expressions that use the words high and tall.
Hot off the PressThis Daily Dose of English is hot off the press. Hot off the press is an idiom. That is, you cannot tell what the meaning is from the words alone. You have to know a little about the background of the idiom. A press is a machine that is used to print things. Often, it is used to print newspapers. That's why we call the people who report the news the Press. Wait until the Press get hold of this story. It will be all over the newspapers.
Hot or SpicyDo you like your food hot or spicy, or both. If you're not sure of the difference between hot and spicy, this video is just for you.
How long is a piece of string?A short daily video about an English expression - How long is a piece of string?
I Don't Know!How do you say "I don't know" in other ways to avoid sounding the same all the time? This Daily Dose of English gives you plenty of alternative ways to say it.
InI'm in my office and I'm in a t-shirt. You can be in any building. You can be in any item of clothing. You can be in any thing. You can be in any physical thing, any physical thing that you can actually get inside. But you can also be in other things, too. Things that are not physical. Here's a selection of things you can be in. I'm in a hurry. She's in a right state. He's in a pickle. She's in a foul mood. He's in a panic. We're in love. He's in a new relationship. She's in a class of her own. He's in a coma. She's in a dream world. He's in an embarrassing position. They're in debt. Look, I'm in the news. I'm in the middle of this Daily Dose of English. I can also be in the middle of a book.
In the PictureTo put someone in the picture means to give someone all the information necessary to understand something. I'm going to put you in the picture about the best way of talking about a picture in which there are people. I took this photograph in the street at Seville's April Fair in the last five years. In the photograph you can see a group of six girls in the doorway of a building. There are six girls in the picture and they're deep in conversation. The girls are all in traditional Spanish dresses.
Invited GuestsToday's request for a Daily Dose of English comes from Syria: "I would like you to make a lesson about hospitality, when someone visit us, especially when we offer the visitor something like cakes or drinks. I hope that you won't forget my request and the lesson will be helpful for me. Thank you. Bye, bye." Okay, so let's look at some typical phrases that we might hear when afternoon guests arrive at our house. Let's assume that you have already invited your guests and they have just arrived on your doorstep. The first thing you will want to do is greet them and make them feel welcome. Something along the lines of...
JabberwockyThe Jabberwocky is a nonsense poem by Lewis Carroll. Because of the nonsense nature of some of the words used, it shows us how we can easily guess the type of word from the position in the sentence. We can only replace content words with nonsense words. Try doing it with function words and you won't understand anything.
JamaicaThere are some words in English that have strong and weak forms. This means that they are pronounced differently depending on how they are used in a sentence. This difference in pronunciation forms the basis of many English jokes. Here is one such joke to help you with your pronunciation.
Just Say No!How do you say "No!" firmly yet politely so that you don't cause offence? It's partly down to tone, and partly down to vocabulary. This video will show you how to do it successfully.
KillMy moustache is killing me today. I don't normally have a moustache, but I thought I'd have one today. What do you think? Handsome, hey? Well, other things can kill us, besides moustaches. My feet are killing me because I've been for a long walk. My back's killing me because I picked up some heavy weights. And we can kill anything that's alive. We can particularly kill two birds with one stone. Which means to do something... or to do two things with only the effort of one thing. We can also figuratively kill things, too. Like a light or an engine. Kill the light. Kill the engine. It means to turn them off. We can kill time, which means to use up time. I've got a lot of time to kill. We can be dressed to kill. Very stylish and fashionable. A bit like me. If looks could kill... When somebody gives you a really nasty look. If looks could kill. And we could kill for something, too. I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize. If you move in for the kill, you're preparing to do t
Lately RecentlyToday's question comes from Mohamed Farouk from Egypt. Mohamed wrote... I'd be glad if you could shed light on the usage of lately/recently. These two words are pretty much confusing. I know they come at the end of a sentence, but I still can't get the hang of using them appropriately. Thanks in advance for your highly appreciated effort.
LegHello and welcome to another Daily Dose of English. Today's Daily Dose of English is about Leg. Most of us have two legs. We use our legs for walking. We also use the word leg in several common idiomatic expressions. An idiom is an expression whose meaning cannot easily be determined from the words alone.
LeisureIn this Daily Dose of English we look at a bit of British culture in the form of a poem from the Welsh poet, W.H. Davies. The poem, Leisure, begins, "What is this life if full of care, we have no time to stand and stare." It is Davies' most famous poem and the one he is best known for.
LemonToday's request for a Daily Dose of English comes from Ana Gassent from Spain. Ana has written... Hi Richard. We Spaniards say that a football player is a "crack" when he is way too good, but I'm afraid that is not the term in English. My question is what do you call a person who is very good at his job? And very bad? Do you call him/her a "lemon"? Thanks! Yes, Ana, I've heard students using the term "crack" in the classroom here is Spain. The closest English term is cracking. He's a cracking player. This means that he's very good at his job.
LightA Daily Dose of English answering the question, "What is light?" Feathers are light, but I'm talking about the stuff that turns night into day. I shed light on the answer quickly and succinctly here. You should also notice a vast improvement in lighting in this video, along with sound. Me and my new camera are getting to know each other.
LikeThe word "like" can be used in several ways in English. This Daily Dose of English uses an English joke to show how the word "like" can be used. I hope you find it interesting and amusing.
Like + To Infinitive or GerundTinh Vo from Vietnam has written to me with the following request for a Daily Dose of English. "Dear Richard, I'd like to know the difference between like + to infinitive and like + gerund. Thank you very much in advance. Tinh." Let's first take a look at some examples. These can help us to understand how the forms work and why we use them.
Made Of or Made FromMany students have problems with the use of the terms "made of" and "made from". This video gives provides a simple way to decide which to use.
Make or Do"Make" and "do" are two verbs that are often confused by students. Their meanings are similar, but there are differences. I hope that this video will help you to see how we use "do" as a main verb, rather than as an auxiliary verb, for activities that produce no physical object, for general ideas, and in many common expressions. I hope, also, that it will show you how the verb "make", which is only ever used as a main verb and never as an auxiliarly verb, is used when we create something that you can touch and with many common expressions.
Make or Do | No Words"Make" and "do" are two verbs that are often confused by students. Their meanings are similar, but there are differences. I hope that this video will help you to see how we use "do" as a main verb, rather than as an auxiliary verb, for activities that produce no physical object, for general ideas, and in many common expressions. I hope, also, that it will show you how the verb "make", which is only ever used as a main verb and never as an auxiliarly verb, is used when we create something that you can touch and with many common expressions. To see the version with words included, click here.
Math SymbolsToday's Daily Dose of English is a request from Albert, in Catalonia, Spain. Albert has written: I recently saw the "Computer Symbols" video and thought it'd be really interesting [to have] a video about mathematic operations. For example, it took me some time to find out that 3 x 4 was read "three times four" (in Spanish we say "three by four"). There are plenty of them: 3+3, 3-3, 3*3, 3/3, 3^3, sqrt(3), 3! and a lot more which I don't know how to write their symbols now. Many thanks for your videos!!! :-) Albert Mata. And many thanks to you, Albert, for making the request. It's an excellent question and one that I'm sure many students are also unsure about. Unfortunately, Maths was never my strong point. I've always been very good with English and always very bad with mathematics. However, if we avoid numbers and stick to the language, I should manage to explain this one reasonably well.
MealsThere are three main meals of the day. This Daily Dose of English will tell you all about them.
MeanThough mean can mean mean when it means the significance of something, or mean can mean mean when it means the middle, mean can also mean mean when it means tight. If that means nothing to you, you might need to watch this Daily Dose of English.
Meat of FleshOne of my online Spanish students has sent me a voice request for a Daily Dose of English. Hello Richard. I'm Rebeca from Águilas in Spain. Hello Rebeca. Thanks for sending me your photograph and your request. How can I help you? Could you explain the difference between the words flesh and meat? Thank you. Well, Rebeca, originally, in English, meat meant food in general. It was spelt mete. Nowadays meat refers to the parts of animals that we normally eat and the types which butchers normally sell. Human beings are made of flesh, but we don't eat human beings. Therefore the flesh of people is not considered to be meat.
Model NumbersModel numbers are everywhere. On everything we buy. If we need to quote a model number, we need to do it properly. These are my ideas about how best we can do this.
My BirthdayIt's my birthday today. The 29th of July. It struck me that today would be a good day to look at how we talk about being born, about how old we are, and how we use the words for and since.
Neither a Borrower Nor a Lender BeBorrowing or lending and words we use to talk about money are in this video. I hope you find some value in it.
OffThe word off is one of the most useful words in the English language. Because of its many uses, however, it can be a little confusing. This Daily Dose of English will show you some of the ways we can use the word off.
OnMd. Hakim Uddin from Bangladesh has asked about the different uses of the preposition on. Well, I can be on a bus, on a train, on a boat and on a plane. I can also be on a bike. But I can't be on a car. We are in a car. I can also be on a hill, on a mountain, on a river, on the ocean and on the roof. As you can see, on is used to say that one thing is physically on another thing. But on can also be used for things that are not physical in the sense that you could stand on them.
OnceOnce is a useful word in English. It has several functions and this Daily Dose of English attempts to outline them all. I'm not going to make another video about once, so this is a once in a lifetime offer. Don't miss it.
Order an Ice-creamAnnie Tsai asked how to order an ice-cream. It seemed a good question, so I set about making a video about it, and here it is. Watch it and never worry about ordering ice-cream in English again.
OughThe letter sequence O-U-G-H can be pronounced in 8 ways in English. This Daily Dose of English will help you to get the pronunciation right.
PackPack, packet, package, packaging, packing are words that confuse students. We have enlisted the help of the world's foremost expert on packages to help you understand when to use each word. Live from the North Pole, our special guest will pack you with the information you need to get it right.
PairYou can have pairs of anything. Pair means two. Two apples and two pears. A pair of twins. But some single things in English can also be pairs. Here is a list of all the things in English that I can think of that are pairs, despite being single items. A pair of binoculars. A pair of nail-clippers. A pair of glasses and a pair of sunglasses. Two pairs of glasses, in fact. A pair of goggles. A pair of jeans. A pair of knickers. A pair of pliers. A pair of scissors. A pair of shorts. A pair of tongs. A pair of trousers. A pair of trunks. A pair of tweezers. A pair of underpants. That's my alphabetical list, and it's all I could think of. Perhaps you can come up with some different ones? Anyway, you can also count pairs of things, as in two pairs of trousers and four pairs of scissors.
PalindromesHere are some very interesting sentences in English known as palindromes. I hope you enjoy them while learning some new vocabulary.
Paper BagToday we're going to look at some vocabulary. Specifically, we're going to look at the vocabulary of paper bags. Wow, exciting! I hear you say. How can you make an English lesson based on paper bags? Well, before you press the stop button, bear with me. There is a lot of vocabulary to be found in the world of brown paper bags, I can tell you. In fact, I am going to tell you. So, without further ado, our first bag is a common or garden brown paper bag.
Paper MagicThis magical video tells you a lot of the words we use when talking about paper. Folding, crumpling, tearing, etc.
PenAs you may already know, I am a writer as well as an English teacher. I pen articles, short stories and books. But I don't use a pen anymore; I use a keyboard. Nevertheless, I can still say that I pen the things I write. I wonder how many more works Shakespeare might have penned if he had had a computer instead of a quill. A quill is pen made from the flight feather of a bird. The flight feathers are the big feathers that form the trailing edge of a bird's wing. The word pen comes from the Middle English, penne, which means feather.
People SoundsPeople make sounds. People make sounds all the time and these sounds have names. In this Daily Dose of English I've put together a collection of some of the common sounds that human beings make so that you'll be able to put a name to them when you hear them or when you're talking about them. Some of the sounds are pleasant, and some are less pleasant. But we all make them.
Pick UpPick up is a very versatile verb which can also be used as a noun. To find out the many ways in which we can use this most useful of verbs, take a look at this video. You'll pick it up in no time.
Positive PeopleToday's request for a Daily Dose comes from Ann Antipenkova in the Russian Federation. Ann asks... "I am a positive girl and I like to smile and to laugh. And I like funny stories that make me chuckle and giggle. What other positive emotions can we express? How do they differ from each other? Thank you in advance!" Well Ann, you certainly do look like a positive girl. As an optimist myself, I like positive, optimistic people. I thought I could best answer your question by taking a look at the characteristics of positive people.
Present PerfectI have received a request from Jack Glick from Israel. Jack has kindly sent in a photo of himself. Jack writes: Could you please explain the present perfect for dummies. Thanks in advance. I have decided to make a very short, but sweet Dose to make this verb tense as easy as possible. The present perfect is formed using the auxiliary verb to have and a main verb in the past participle.
Puncture RepairThis Daily Dose of English shows how even something so simple as fixing a bicycle can yield a wealth of vocabulary that can be use in many other areas of life. From patching a puncture to patching up a relationship, from pumping up a tyre to pumping up our muscles, the vocabulary is very useful.
RatsRats are rodents. They are like mice, only bigger and not as cute. They also spread disease and are one of the least liked animals in the world. They do figure in many expressions in English, though.
Recipes, Receipts, Bills and PrescriptionsRecipes, Receipts, Bills and Prescriptions are words that often cause confusion. This video is my prescription for such troubles. Follow the recipe and you'll never make mistakes again.
RenderJaroslav Bernkopf from the Czech Republic asked: Please could you explain the meanings of the word "render"? I render video projects quite often but I am not able to explain the word. I Set out in this Daily Dose of English to answer him. I hope my explanation helps you, too.
Romeo and JulietToday, I am going to tell you the story of Romeo and Juliet in a somewhat less elegant and considerably shortened form to that which William Shakespeare originally wrote. Romeo Montague and Juliet Capulet are the children of two families who don't get along together. Despite family differences, Romeo and Juliet fall in love when Romeo gatecrashes a party at her father's house. It is love at first sight. Romeo goes to see Friar Lawrence who agrees to marry the two lovers in secret. The friar hopes that the marriage will end the long-standing dispute between the two families.
Salary WagesStudents often ask me, What is the difference between salary and wages? Well, both words refer to a person's pay or earnings. The difference between the two lies in how a person is paid. Some people have fixed work contracts and are paid a fixed amount each year, however many hours they work. We call this kind of pay, salary. Wages are always paid to people who do casual work or are on short-term contracts.
SaltSalt is important. Without salt you can die. The importance of salt can be seen in the number of idioms which use the word salt in English.
Say or TellMany students confuse the words say and tell when they are reporting what somebody said. This Daily Dose of English aims to avoid such confusion.
SchwaTomek Sikorski from Poland has asked if I can help him to correctly pronounce a word. What is the most common sound in English? What is the most important sound in English? What sound can be found in almost all English words with more than one syllable? It is found in virtually all English words with more than one syllable and it is the sound we use for the weak forms of many words.
SexFrench mice have sex. That could account for the fact that there are so many of them, but the fact that they have sex is because each noun in a language like French has gender or sex. Mice are feminine or female in French but telephones are masculine or male. It's the same in Spanish, and it's very confusing for an Englishman like me, who has never had to worry too much about sex. In general, the English don't worry about sex, except on the odd occasion.
ShapesShapes come in all shapes and sizes. Here is a selection of the common ones like square, oblong, scalene triangle, straight line, circle, oval.
ShirtHow loud is your shirt? What a peculiar question you might be saying, but this Daily Dose of English will show you just why you can ask it. It will also tell you some useful expressions that we have using "shirt".
ShoppingToday's request comes from Poland. I hope I'm pronouncing the name correctly when I say that Mariusz has written, I love your website, but I would like to find here a video about shopping. I searched and searched and could not find anything in here with this interesting subject. Well, shopping is an immense subject and it's hard to know where to begin. We, the customers, go to the shops to buy or purchase something. We make a transaction with the owner of the shop and they provide us with goods in exchange for money.
Shrug OffShrug off is a phrasal verb. It's a regular verb. Regular verbs add -ed to the root to form the past forms. The infinitive is to shrug off. The past simple is shrugged off, and the past participle is shrugged off. The continuous form is shrugging off. If you shrug off something, you don't worry about it or consider it important.
SkintToday, Lenka Ďulíková, a Czech, has written to me and asked, "I'd like to know how to say I have no money." Well, Lenka, perfect timing. And you've come to an expert in this because English teachers really have no money. We're very poor.
SleepToday's Dose comes from another star of a Daily Dose of English - Adel Belkada. "Hello Richard. I am Adel Belkada from Algeria (Dweera), and I'd like you to teach me how to distinguish between these pairs of words WAKE AWAKE, SLEEP ASLEEP...Thank you my teacher and have a nice day. Goodbye Richard." In answering this question I will try not to send you to sleep. If you are asleep, wake up. You won't learn anything if you go to sleep. So try to stay awake while you watch this Daily Dose of English. You can probably see already that the words wake and awake have different functions. The same goes for sleep and asleep.
SmallSmall is an overused and overworked adjective like big. But there are not so many synonyms for small as there are for big. Perhaps this is because small-scale things tend to escape our notice. To a whale, I'm small, but to a millipede, if it notices that I exist, I'm huge. In relation to me, the millipede is tiny indeed. It's not quite microscopic, because I can see it. But it is rather diminutive, isn't it? A woodlouse is tiny, too. It inhabits the same microcosm that the millipede does. It's like a miniscule tank. But if you want to take a brief look into the mini-world of insects, the ants are well worth a visit.
SnailNow snails may not be the most attractive or interesting creatures on the planet, but have you ever stopped to consider what a snail is? Have you ever taken a close look at one? Well, snails are gastropods. They have single coiled shell and they are found all over the world. I found this one this morning in the park. It gave me the idea to make a Daily Dose of English about snails. Thanks to digital camera technology, we can at take an up close and personal view of this particular snail.
So Very MuchThere are many ways to tell someone to stop doing something in English. This Daily Dose of English tells you how. Don't quit until you've learnt them all.
SoapHere is one of the cleanest Daily Doses of English I've made yet. It looks as soap and gives you a few useful expressions that use soap. It also tells you how the minimal pair, soap and soup, can cause a lot of confusion to students.
SorrySorry seems to be the hardest word, but this Daily Dose of English will make it one of the easiest.
SpiderSome interesting information about spiders and how to overcome your irrational fear of them. A look at some different types of spiders, including the deadly Black Widow, and some expressions that we get from webs and spiders.
SpringI'm keeping myself out of this video and letting Spring speak for herself through these images. The first sign that spring is on its way is the arrival of hundreds, if not thousands, of storks. These are soon followed by flocks of eagles, circling on the wing; rising on the updrafts created by the warm spring sun. Then the flowers begin to bloom and start making pollen and nectar which attracts a myriad of insects. Bees, too, are attracted by the bright-coloured flowers and the promise of the rich nectar that they hold. And even flies like this one, specially designed to suck up the nectar from deep within the flower. And the busy bees flit from flower to flower, overladen with pollen attached to their legs - a promise of a rich crop of honey to come. And butterflies, too, like this beautiful Red Admiral, suck the nectar up from the flowers with their prehensile tongues - their proboscises. ...until an intruding bee forces it from its flower. Yes, spring has arrived in Andal
StopFrom Alexander in Costa Rica comes the question, how do we use so and much with very? This Daily Dose of English sets out to answer the question. I very much hope you will enjoy it.
Suits YouGalya from Russia has posted a video question to the Daily Dose of English request page at Linguaspectrum. Over to you, Galya... Hello. My name is Galya and I'm from Russia. I'd like you to explain what's the difference between phrases to fit, to go with, to become, to suit and to match. Thank you. Have a nice day. Well Galya, let's have a look at each of the expressions in turn, shall we? They all apply to clothing.
The"The" can be pronounced in two ways depending on what sound follows it. It can also change its pronunciation when it is used to add emphasis. This video will guide you towards the correct pronunciation at all times.
The Foolish FugitiveFeeling footloose, fancy-free and frisky, a feather-brained fellow finagled his father into forking over his fortune. Forthwith, he fled for foreign fields and frittered his farthings feasting fabulously with fair-weather friends. Finally, fleeced by those folly-filled fellows and facing famine, he found himself flinging feed in a filthy farm-lot. He fain would have filled his frame with foraged fodder fragments. "Phooey! My father's flunkies fare far fancier," the frazzled fugitive fumed.
ThumbI hope you give this Daily Dose of English a thumbs up. It's all the expressions I could think of that use the word thumb. If you can think of more, please put them in the comments.
TiredI'm tired. I'm worn out. I'm exhausted. I'm fatigued. I'm knackered. I'm pooped. These are some of the expressions we can use to describe the fact that we are tired. This video will give you some of these expressions in context.
To or From?The prepositions "from" and "to" are always confusing when talking about our own location. Do we say something is "the nearest to our house" or "the nearest from our house"? This sounds like a simple question, but it is one that causes some confusion and concern for students. After this Daily Dose of English all the confusion will be a thing of the past.
Tongue TwistersThis is a ground-breaking, never-before-tried, Daily Dose of English, where we ask a student to make a video request for a Daily Dose of English. It took quite lot of doing, but the doing is done and the video is here. Feel free to follow the example. And enjoy these English tongue-twisters.
Topsy-turvyI'm sorry? What's that? Ah! One moment. You're right, I'm upside-down. Hang on a minute while I put it right. That's better. Now that I'm right side up, I'll explain about upside-down. The upside, the downside. Now, the upside is down and the downside is up we are upside-down. And it's an expression similar to other expressions in English that tell us that things are not quite as they should be. For example, inside-out.
TrickThere are many words and expressions in English that stem from the word trick. I thought I had better make a Daily Dose of English about them no matter how tricky the video might be to make. So I did.
Triple HomophonesMost students know such homophones as "bear" and "bare", but few are aware of the triple homophones that exist. Many English words have the same pronunciation, but a different spelling and meaning. We call these homophones. Here are some triple homophones for you.
Ups & DownsToday's request for a Daily Dose of English comes from Irina Khasanova in St. Petersburg, Russia. Irina asks: "I would like you to make a video about increase and decrease in something. Are there some good synonyms? What are good ways to express an increase (for example 3-fold)?" So let's look at some other expressions that indicate rise and fall, increase and decrease. What better place to look than to the currency markets which are constantly in a state of flux.
WatchA watch is a device with which we tell the time. It's different to a clock, which is also a device with which we tell the time, in that you carry a watch with you. Clocks tend to stay in one place. You can have a wrist watch which, unsurprisingly, is worn on the wrist, and you can have a pocket watch, which is carried... You've got it... in your pocket. And watch is also a verb that is used in many expressions in English. For example: Can you watch the children? I'm going to watch a DVD. I'm going bird watching. But what am I going to watch if I watch my back, my mouth, my step, or myself?
WaterWater is a very necessary part of our world and this Daily Dose of English tells you all you need to know about how we use the word in English.
Well Done!Hello and welcome to another Daily Dose of English. Today's request is a video request from St Petersburg, Russia. "Hello Richard. I'm Andrei from St Petersburg, Russia. It's very nice to meet you actually. Thank you so much for your videos. Well, could you please put me in the picture about one simple instance? Here goes. A girl did her job very well, or a girl has done her job very well. How do I have to compliment her for her job? Well done? Good for you? Attagirl? What else can I say to her in this case? And what can I say to you, Richard, for your brilliant job next time, apart from thanks? Goodbye."
WishBelkada Adele, and I hope I've pronounced that correctly, from Algeria, has made a request for a Daily Dose of English. I would like you to teach me how to wish. Well, Belkada, your wish has come true. Wish basically means to want something a lot. We can use it to make wishes about the present and the future using wish and the past simple. We can also use it to talk about the future... In a similar way we can use wish + would + infinitive without to (the bare infinitive). When we regret something in the past, we can use the past perfect. When we use wish + infinitive we are using a formal construction to say that we want something. And finally we can use wish in some fixed expressions... And we have some idiomatic expressions that use wish.
WorryDo you worry that your English is not good enough? Do you worry about things you know you cannot change? If your are a worrier, this Daily Dose of English will help you both with your English and with your worries.
Would or Used ToWhether to use would or used to to talk about the past confuses many students. This Daily Dose of English is an attempt to explain it as concisely as possible. It uses some examples to help you understand when to use would or used to.