Text speak slang: Help for ESL learners


As I mentioned in another post, there are many shorthand terms that are slang so it’s good to look up the words in one of the online text lingo dictionaries (they are listed on the other post, click the link for more information).

A lot of the text speak slang is not shorter than regular words. This is different than what regular text speak normally does. Really, people are trying to be cool when they’re using text speak slang — or I should say kewl not cool…. now do you understand what I mean?

Here a few examples: Continue reading

Idiom: She’s “got nothing on” this parrot!


Earlier this week I did a vocabulary lesson based on a girl doing animal impressions. She was amazing…but after watching “Einstein” the parrot’s animal impressions I have to say, that girl’s got nothing on this parrot!

What’s “got nothing on someone” mean?

The expression “got nothing on someone” (or “have nothing on someone”) is used to compare different people and their qualities, skills, etc.

The person that’s “got nothing” is the thing that is less in comparison to the other person(s). Continue reading

Amazing Animal Impressions Vocabulary Lesson

This gal does amazing animal impressions. What’s an impression? There are several definitions of this word, but in this situation an impression is an imitation of something. Here’s she’s acting like she is different animals.

Check out her video and then take the quiz to see if you can name all of the animals.

Now here’s a quick quiz.

1. dog

This is a

Question 1 of 18



This is a .

Question 2 of 18

3. Robin

This is a .




Question 3 of 18

4. cricket

This is a .

Question 4 of 18



This is an .

Question 5 of 18



This is a .

Question 6 of 18

7. wolf

This is a .

Question 7 of 18



This is a .

Question 8 of 18



This is a .

Question 9 of 18



This is an .

Question 10 of 18



This is a .

Question 11 of 18



This is a .

Question 12 of 18



This is a .

Question 13 of 18



This is a .

Question 14 of 18



This type of bird is a:


Question 15 of 18



This bird lives in Australia:


Question 16 of 18



This is a .

Question 17 of 18



This is a . It can talk.

Question 18 of 18



Practice the Imperative with Flight Safety Video



Hey everyone! Here’s another flight safety instruction lesson (previous lessons include a rapping flight attendant and vocabulary practice). This time we can review some grammar: The Imperative.

The imperative is used to tell someone to do something, or not to do something. It’s a command.

Since airline safety instruction demonstrations are telling people what to do – and not to do – flight attendants use the imperative throughout their speeches.

1.  To form the imperative, use the present tense.

2.  The subject of the imperative is always the same: you.

Continue reading

Practice Listening with Virgin America Safety Video

Airline crossword puzzle

I traveled last night by plane again and decided to do some more safety video lessons so you can practice hearing different accents. Here you will listen to an American accent. You can listen to an Australian accent here.

In this lesson you will also learn some vocabulary related to air travel. Please note that there are different words for the same things. For example, airplane is the same as aircraft. And, life vest is the same as life jacket. Don’t get frustrated; many of the names sound similar. Continue reading

Tennis Lesson on Superlatives

Collage photo of top ranked women players (Serena Williams, Victoria Azarenka, Li Na and Agnieszka Radwanska)

2013 top ranked women’s tennis players © Neale Cousland / Shutterstock.com

As promised, I’m back with your next tennis lesson :)

In case you missed it, yesterday, we reviewed comparative adjectives:

Rafael Nadal is a better tennis player than Novak Djokovic. Or is Novak better? We can debate that all day but one thing is for sure:

Compared to Novak and Rafael, I am the worst player. Oh well, compared to them I’m the best English speaker! ;)

So, you may have guessed that today’s lesson is on the superlative. This time we’ll look at some top-ranked women’s tennis players. Continue reading

Tennis Lesson on Comparative Adjectives


A recent exhibition tennis match on a barge in front of a glacier in Patagonia between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic was so cool I’ve decided to give a tennis lesson… a grammar lesson comparing tennis champions, that is!

Today I’ll compare men’s tennis rivals Rafa and Nole, who are currently ranked #1 and #2 in the world (as of December 2013). I’ll look at some of the top women’s players tomorrow.

First an overview of comparisons and then a short quiz (it’s painless, I promise).

Continue reading

Lady Gaga criticizes Glamour for making her too beautiful on its magazine cover


NOTEHover your mouse over the blue words to see the definitions of these words.

Lady Gaga was recently chosen as one of Glamour Magazine’s Women of the Year for 2013 and her photo was featured on the magazine’s December 2013 cover above. Instead of wearing one of her outlandish costumes she was dressed more conservatively and looked more like a fashion model.

Perhaps she looks a bit too glamorous and beautiful? Continue reading

TED Tuesdays: Cameron Russell says Looks Aren’t Everything


Check out the recent TED Tuesdays talk lesson featuring Cameron Russell, an American fashion model who has worked for famous designers and brands like Victoria’s Secret, Chanel, Benetton, Marc Jacobs and many more.

Practice your listening comprehension and join in this important discussion to practice your writing skills. Click here for the lesson.