Results 1 to 5 of 5
  1. #1
    Michaelpp is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • Brazil
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    9
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default How do I explain to a student the following

    I get into a car. I get into a truck. I get into a taxi.
    However I get on a bus. I get on an areoplane and I get on a train.
    I am having difficulties with this explanation.

  2. #2
    esltutor is offline Junior Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    75
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: How do I explain to a student the following

    The short answer is "it's English!"

    I just explain that there are certain expressions that take certain prepositions, and that it makes no logical sense. There are just some things that need to be memorized.

    Most (if not all) large transportation vehicles (e.g., trains, buses, planes and ships) take the preposition "on."

    I also use a unit from Murphy's "Grammar in Use-Intermediate" that shows these preposition-transportation vehicle combinations.

    Best,
    Debra
    http://www.teaching-esl-to-adults.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    5,425
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: How do I explain to a student the following

    Notice two things: Is the vehicle private or public transport?; and how big is the public vehicle?

    Before trains and planes, we went 'on board' a ship; and getting 'on' is now also used for large public transport vehicles.

    But note that a jet pilot, even when he has a co-pilot, does not get 'on' his plane but 'in', because of the small size of the plane and actually physically being 'inside' the small craft. Similarly, we get 'in' a cab even though it is public transportation: we are enclosed in a confined space.

    We get 'on' a horse because we 'sit on' the horse, as we also sit 'on' a tractor. When the machinery is large and has a protective cabin, then we get 'in', as we are enclosed within a confined space.

    We have had this post before; and I know other posters have some good points to make about this, when they come online.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    2
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: How do I explain to a student the following

    Yes English can be very confusing at times, seems every rule we make we then take the pleasure to break.

    You might want to try this approach. To get on a bus or a plane you must go up steps. With a car, truck or taxi you basically just sit down.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    13
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: How do I explain to a student the following

    (get on) is widely used when get on public transportation, this public transportation should have (aboard) you can walk on,such as a bus,a train,or a plane.

    (get in) is usually used when you just enter and sit on the seat.

Similar Threads

  1. english student needs answers
    By shift in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 02-Jun-2008, 20:53
  2. help me, to help me, explain me, explain to me
    By user_gary in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 01-Aug-2007, 16:00
  3. African ESL student
    By teacherkev in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 22-Aug-2005, 06:52

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •