• Separable and Inseparable Phrasal Verbs

    Phrasal verbs are difficult for English students for several reasons. They don’t exist in most other languages, they can look like other verbs, they often have 3 – 5 meanings depending on the context, and they also can be separable and inseparable. Often because they are so complicated, students will not try to learn them. This is a mistake, because while phrasal verbs are not often used in formal speech or writing, about 80 percent of the verbs in spoken English are phrasal verbs.

    That means that if you never studied phrasal verbs, and you come visit the United States, you may not understand 80 percent of the verbs people use while speaking. Obviously, this will be a problem.

    In this video and exercise, we will work on separable and inseparable phrasal verbs. Students commonly ask when they can separate phrasal verbs, and this video will help you understand.

    Watch the video below, then try the exercise:


    Exercise: Rearrange the words to create complete sentences. Each sentence contains a phrasal verb. You can write your answers in comments, and we will respond.

    1. wakes/he/up/10 am/at

    2. party/night/last/passed/I/out

    3. turned/she/after/3/waiting/hours/up

    4. he/airport/pick/will/up/you/at/the

    5. calm/you/need/to/down

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