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Category: Skype English Blog

  • Hold On – Phrasal Verb of the Day

    Today’s phrasal verb of the day is: Hold On Infinitive form: Hold On Present Tense: Hold On/ Holds On ing form: Holding On Past tense: Held On Participle: Held On   Hold On is an inseparable English phrasal verb. The opposite of hang on is Let Go. It can be used in three different ways: […]

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  • Pay Back – Phrasal Verb of the Day

    Today’s phrasal verb of the day is: Pay Back Infinitive form: Pay Back Present Tense: Pay Back/ Pays Back ing form: Paying Back Past tense: Paid Back Past Participle: Paid Back   Pay Back is an inseparable English phrasal verb. It can be used in two different ways:   When you give back the money […]

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  • Using Passive Voice in English – Video and Exercises

    I realized that we don’t have a grammar video on the Passive voice when one of my students made a common mistake using the passive voice. Passive voice is important for written English and it is also a really good way to review your tenses, because the passive voice can be in any tense. We […]

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  • How to use Phrasal Verbs as Nouns

    It is important to know the difference between a phrasal verb and the noun form of the phrasal verb. You’ll find that the IELTS, First Certificate, CAE, and TOEFL will test you on understanding the difference between them. Sometimes the noun form and the verb form have a similar meaning, but not always. For instance […]

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  • Using Adjectives as Nouns: English Grammar Video and Exercise:

    In English we can talk about categories by turning an adjective into a noun. This can be especially helpful when writing and it should be studied by anyone taking the TOEFL, CAE, IELTS, or First Certificate tests. We take the adjective and add the definite article ‘the’ in front of it, i.g. good-the good: The […]

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  • Past Perfect Progressive Tense – Video and Exercise

    This is one of the trickier tenses to learn and master in English and, although it isn’t used a lot, it is still important to understand when, where, and why we use this tense. It really is a lot easier to explain when you see a timeline, so I highly recommend watching the video to […]

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  • Common False Cognates Between Portuguese and English

    English and Portuguese contain a lot of false cognates, also known as false friends. These are words that look like they should have the same meaning, but don’t. Often times this can lead to funny or embarrassing situations, so it’s good to know them. Below we’ve created a list of some of the most common […]

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  • Improve Your English in 3 Minutes With This Tip

    I hear it ALL the time. My students use “<em>all” </em>incorrectly. I’m so used to it, sometimes I don’t even notice. But today during one of my classes I noticed the mistake and I decided to investigate why this is so hard for English language learners. It turns out that it is actually quite complex, grammatically […]

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  • 7 Ways to Improve Your English Writing

    We’re getting more and more interest in English writing classes from our students, which is why we’ve added them as a special class now (learn more here). I think the reasons are clear. Most of our students really need to use their English to communicate important information. Our students are doctors, lawyers, engineers and executives. […]

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  • English Word Stress and Pronunciation – Video

    I’ve been working with one of my students on pronunciation and I realize how difficult it can be in English. Firstly, English isn’t phonetic which makes it difficult to learn from reading. You could have a really high reading level and a low speaking level. Secondly, English has different syllable stress pattern so, you could […]

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  • Using English Adjective Clauses and Phrases (video)

    Adjective clauses and phrases are probably the most common grammatical construction in the daily newspaper. People and their ages, positions, company affiliations, as well as places with descriptions, and times with memorable data all appear in adjective clauses and phrases. On any given page of the paper, you will probably find 20 of them, such […]

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  • How to Use English Adverbs of Place

    I was asked a very good question on our English level exam.  The student wanted to know why there was no preposition between “not” and “home” in the sentence, “Last week she was not home.” Many English language learners make this mistake. They say, “I go TO home at 3.” This is incorrect. We say, “I […]

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  • Why is English Pronunciation so Difficult?

    Why is English pronunciation so difficult? One of the most confusing things about English is pronunciation. English has a total of 17tk spoken vowel sounds. This makes English unusual, as most languages have 5-6. Spanish, for instance, has 5 vowel sounds, Mandarin 6, and Portuguese 9. English Pronunciation Guide Another odd thing is that we only use […]

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  • English Vowel Pronunciation Exam – with Audio

    Assessment by Kate YoonVoice by Teauna Peters How is your English pronunciation? LOI English has created a self assessment, with recordings that you can compare yourself to. Instructions: Read aloud the sentence. Ask yourself the question. Your answer should be ‘yes’. Rate the level of difficulty 0-5 (0=Not difficult, 5=very difficult). 1. Please believe that meat, beans, and […]

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  • The Party’s Over – Business English

    Our business English listening exercises have been popular, so we’ve got another one this week. Even if you’re not learning English for business, I think these are great listening exercises that contain useful vocabulary and expressions, and interesting ideas. If you’re interested in classes focused on business English, check out our executive English course. This […]

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  • 8 Things We Learned at CONARH 2015 – Useful Lessons for Expos

      We hope you enjoyed CONARH 2015 as much as we did! We learned a lot during the show, and had a few frustrating and funny things happen. We wanted to share our story of CONARH and what we learned. (Leia-o aqui em Português). 1. Always double check flight itineraries. Hugo Pacheco, a member of […]

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  • English Consonant Pronunciation Exam – with Audio

    How is your English pronunciation? Read the sentences below aloud and answer the questions. Then listen to the audio and decide if you sound the same as the recording. If you don’t sound the same, make a note it. All the sounds you had difficulties with can be practiced in our intensive pronunciation courses. 1. Do you […]

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  • Europe’s Refugee Crisis: A Listening Exercise

    The refugee crisis in Europe seems to be getting more serious. As the European governments and the EU struggle with decisions there seem to be a lot of citizens that are willing to help. Here is a listening exercise that is inspiring and hopeful for such a depressing topic.   Answer the questions below in […]

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  • When Should You Start Studying for an English Job Interview?

    Job Interview Preparation in English Often I teach first classes to new students who are preparing for a job interview. I give them our English diagnostic test, we talk about what areas they need to improve in, and then I ask them, “When is your interview?” “Next week.” You would be surprised at how often […]

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  • How LOI English got Started

    Over the weekend I was doing a bit of nesting (definition here). Unpacking some old boxes and I came across this gem. It is LOI English’s original scheduling system! It’s amazing how far we’ve come in 6 years and how much we’ve learned along the way. This was my original schedule, from 2010. In late […]

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  • Featured Lesson: Have you ever talked about dreams in English? Now’s your chance..

    If you’re bored with the normal English conversation classes where you only learn how to introduce yourself  then LOI has English classes for you. Our classes cover a full range of topics and grammar points some are as timeless as talking about dreams and others are more current topics about the refugee crisis in Europe. […]

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  • LOI Participates in English Day at Swedish School

    LOI recently took part in an English Day at the request of a longtime student, Frank. Frank teaches English and Spanish to middle school students in Sweden. He asked LOI to offer our live classes to a group of his 13 and 14 year old students as part of English Day, so that they would have the chance to talk […]

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  • LOI Student and Teacher Meet Face to Face

    Hugo, a longtime LOI English student, and Adriana, one of our great teachers, recently had the chance to meet in person. Ironically, both Hugo and Adriana are Brazilian, but when they met they were both traveling in the United States. After taking many classes with Adriana, Hugo mentioned he’d be traveling in the U.S. and Adriana […]

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  • Master the Difference Between Do and Make In a Week

    The difference between ‘do’ and ‘make’ can be extremely frustrating to any English Language Learner. This blog is to help you master the difference in one week. If you follow the instructions and do the work everyday you will grasp the difference a lot more strongly. Day 1: The first thing  you need to do […]

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