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    #1

    hold the toothbrush _______ so that I can apply (?) toothpaste

    Dear all,

    The other day I was trying to help my son apply (is that the right verb?) toothpaste. He held the toothbrush vertically. I want to ask him to hold it horizontally. How would you say that?

    Dear hold the toothbrush _________ so that I can apply (correct verb?) toothpaste.

    thank you!

  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: hold the toothbrush _______ so that I can apply (?) toothpaste

    Well, that depends on your son's vocabulary. Assuming that he is too young to understand horizontal, you could just show him and say "this way". "Apply" is OK, but "put on" will also work.

  2. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: hold the toothbrush _______ so that I can apply (?) toothpaste

    Or "hold it flat"
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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    #4

    Re: hold the toothbrush _______ so that I can apply (?) toothpaste

    Before I saw answer above, I thought of this:

    Hold your toothbrush sideways.

    I don't know if this is correct way of using "sideways".

    Thanks!

  3. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: hold the toothbrush _______ so that I can apply (?) toothpaste

    "Sideways" doesn't work for me. If someone told me to hold my toothbrush sideways, I would hold it horizontally but I would point the bristles towards me or away from me, I wouldn't point them upwards (which is the important bit).

    Like Barb, I would use "Hold it flat [with the bristles pointing up]".
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #6

    Re: hold the toothbrush _______ so that I can apply (?) toothpaste

    I'd say 'Hold it like this' (showing him how to do it).

    EDIT: I've just noticed that Mike said that long ago.

  4. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: hold the toothbrush _______ so that I can apply (?) toothpaste

    Is it OK to say 'hold it in a level position'?

  5. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: hold the toothbrush _______ so that I can apply (?) toothpaste

    That's quite unnatural for me, not to mention a bit wordy for an instruction to a child.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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