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  1. englishhobby

    Opening the parcel, she saw...

    1) Opening the parcel, she saw a box of pencils. 2) Having opened the parcel, she saw a box of pencils Can we say that in 1) she opened the parcel completely when she saw the box of pencils? Or was it only during the process of opening the parcel that she saw a box of pencils?
  2. englishhobby

    [Vocabulary] to engage well with somebody

    Does the expression 'to engage well with somebody' exist in English? If yes, is it widely used? Can I say 'The teacher should engage well with the students'?
  3. englishhobby

    [Grammar] I wish someone would have taken the map/I wish someone had taken the map

    What is the difference in meaning (if any): 1) I wish someone would have taken the map! 2) I wish someone had taken the map!
  4. englishhobby

    [Vocabulary] to engage various activities

    Can I say 'Learn more about your students through engaging various activities'? Or is it better to say 'Learn more about your students through engaging them in various activities'?
  5. englishhobby

    [Grammar] She is in her German class at the moment.

    Is the following exchange correct and natural? - Where is Scarlett? - She is in her German class at the moment. She usually has it on Tuesdays and Fridays from 6 to 7 pm.
  6. englishhobby

    taking the time (out)

    Are both sentences natural? If yes, is there any difference in meaning between them? 1) Thank you for taking the time out to do this interview. 2) Thank you for taking the time to do this interview.
  7. englishhobby

    [Idiom] somewhere in there

    Can I use 'somewhere in there' to mean 'approximately'? For example: A normal schedule is usually 8:30 to 4:30, somewhere in there, and you usually get an hour for lunch.
  8. englishhobby

    [Idiom] look alike like two drops of water.

    Is 'like two drops of water' a commonly used idiom? (E. g. They look alike like two drops of water.)
  9. englishhobby

    [Idiom] to look different like

    Is there some kind of idiomatic expression I could use to complete the sentence 'They look different like...'? I think 'like chalk and cheese' doesn't work in this case because it is used to talk about personalities.
  10. englishhobby

    [Grammar] Vocabulary List/the Vocabulary list

    In a textbook that I'm writing for my students I have the following instruction: Ask and answer questions as in the model using Vocabulary List. I capitalise 'Vocabulary List' to emphasize its importance. A 'Vocabulary List' starts each unit of my textbook. They have to learn a few of such...
  11. englishhobby

    [Vocabulary] to set up separate residences.

    While reading a short story called 'A Canary for One' (by Ernest Hemingway) I came across this sentence (the last one): We were returning to Paris to set up separate residences. Generally, I understand it because in the story the narrator and his wife were travelling to Paris to get divorced...
  12. englishhobby

    [Vocabulary] the father or the grandmother

    Does the following exchange sound natural? (If, for example, the speaker is 'the mother' who is talking to someone who doesn't know any names of the members of the family.) 'Who collects the children from pre-school in your family?' 'Well, generally, the father or the grandmother do it.'
  13. englishhobby

    [Vocabulary] until it sticks

    Can I say to my students 'Keep learning this phrase until it sticks'? Will it sound appropriate in an English classroom?
  14. englishhobby

    [Vocabulary] I'll defreeze you now

    There is a game for pre-schoolers called ‘Freeze Dance’. When the music is playing, the children are dancing. When the music stops, the teacher says 'Freeze!' and the children stop moving and 'freeze' in the position they were in the moment the music stopped. The teacher then touches each child...
  15. englishhobby

    to play the mother / the father / the dog / Ann

    Is it correct to use the phrases like 'to play the mother' or 'to play the dog' in the context of a roleplay in the kindergarten? For example, can I say 'Anna, do you want to play the mother?' (= to play the role of the mother in a roleplay)? Or 'Who wants top play the dog?' Or (for older...
  16. englishhobby

    [Idiom] only a very short time

    Is there an idiom for "only a very short time" that could be used to comment on the behaviour of an ambitious person who has just started working in a place and trying to change a lot of things? (In my language you can say the same using an idiom.) Example: You have been here (only a very short...
  17. englishhobby

    [General] She is happy for her long-lived relatives

    Can the word 'long-lived' refer to someone who is still alive? Does the following sentence sound natural (if the girl's relatives are srtill living and they are 90 or more years old)? She is happy for her long-lived relatives. If not, how can we express the same idea? Does She is happy for her...
  18. englishhobby

    Children learn/study English

    Can we replace 'learn' with 'study' without any change of meaning in this particular sentence? Children learn English from an early age in most European countries.
  19. englishhobby

    Our team had been winning until half time

    Are both variants grammatically correct and natural? 1) Our team had been winning until half time, but in the second half the other team scored three goals, and so they beat us. 2) Our team was winning until half time, but in the second half the other team scored three goals, and so they beat...
  20. englishhobby

    [Grammar] had owned a hotel until he sold it

    Are both variants grammatically correct and natural? 1) My grandfather had owned a hotel until he sold it. 2) My grandfather owned a hotel until he sold it. It seems to me that both are correct. In my textbook there is only one correct answer given in the key ('owned'). If there is more than...
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