The BLC Blog

A forum and learning place for British Language Centre students

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Studying that's fun to do!

Students often ask their teachers for ways of improving their level of English outside of class time but can be less than enthusiastic when it comes to completing extra homework exercises or studying their list of irregular verbs. Englishfile, a series of coursebooks from Oxford University Press, has an excellent website where students can learn vocabulary, pronunciation, practical language and grammar in a fun and interactive way. I'm particularly addicted to the skating game / race against time. So if you are looking for a more fun way of brushing up on / practising your English at home you should check out the following address...

...then choose your level and away you go!

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Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Pronunciation Spot

For many students the pronunciation of the -ed ending can be problematic. How do you know if you are supposed to pronounce the 'e' or not? Why do we say want-ed but not liv-ed? Do not fear, there is a general rule to follow;

The only time we pronounce the 'ed' ending is when it is preceded by the letter 't' or the letter 'd'.

So, for example, with verbs like visit, invite, decide, record and want you have to pronounce the 'ed' ending as an extra syllable. But with verbs such as travel, play, like and look, you must not. These endings are pronounced with either a 'd' sound or a 't' sound.

If the infinitive ends in one of the following sounds ('p', 'f', 's', 'k', 'sh', 'ch') the ending is pronounced 't'.

For example - wash (wosht), laugh (laft), like (laikt)

If the infinitive ends in any other sound the ending is pronounced 'd'.

For example - play (pleid), live (livd)

For pronunciation practice check out this website. Happy endings!

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