3 tricks for learning English - prepositions, vocabulary, structure


Hi. James from www.engvid.com. I'd normally be reading, but I'm putting my finishing touches

on. Our expensive prop department -- "props" are things you use in movies to demonstrate

things, or a "prop" might be a marker or a pen or a car, right? Our prop department

is so poor I had to draw a hat on a box, but it will help demonstrate the 3 tricks to learn

English. Now, there are three little tricks that you

can do -- and even better, you can do with a friend -- to learn English. So you can actually

have partner practice. We haven't really discussed this much here, but why not? I mean probably,

you may not go to an English school, so you don't have anyone but your friend who is probably

watching with you right now. So here are three quick little tricks you can do, and the beauty

of these are - they're going to help you with, No.1, vocab -- vocabulary. Okay? No.2, we're

going to work on prepositions. And No. 3, we'll work on structure of English. How's that?

You paid nothing, and you're getting lots. And the best thing is they'll all be

fun -- fun. Cough, there. All right. First thing we're going to talk

about is a hat trick. In hockey, a "hat trick" is three things: You score three goals. One,

two, and three, just like in English football or European football. Three goals is a hat

trick. Don't know why they call it that, but that's what they call it. Our hat trick is

called a "hat pull", "hat pull". What's a "hat pull"? Well, you learn your vocabulary,

and there's lots and lots of vocabulary. Every day something new. Even when I said things

like "hat trick" in this very lesson, there are probably three vocabulary words that you

hadn't heard before, that you had to go, "What does he mean?", and I taught you them. But

wouldn't it be cool if you had a fun trick to play? A lot of people play flash cards,

you know, they get a card. They put the meaning of the word. They turn it over and try and

remember. This is a variation that a friend taught me. It's quite fun. What you do is,

take your hat, okay? Learn five, ten, words -- 20 even. When you learn them or think you

know them, put them in the hat. And you and a friend can then put your hand in the hat

and take out the word, and then say something like "philosophy". And the other person has

to say, "It's this word. It means this." If they get it right, then they can put their

hand in, take out another vocabulary word, and go, "What's this word?" And you can keep

playing to help master vocabulary. Cool, right? You're having fun, you're challenging each

other. Collect cards. See who wins the game. Or if you're doing it by yourself, just pull

it out, turn it over, and try and think of what is the word that's in your hand. It helps

to "jog your memory", which is an idiom that means to help you remember or reminds you

of the meaning of words. You can play it with one friend, two friends, three friends. That's

kind of cool, right? You can even do it in a classroom. Suggest it for your teacher.

Go, "Hey, can we play the hat game?" "The hat game? Son, you're too young to play the

hat game." You go, "No, Pops, it's a good game." Just get a hat and some paper or tissue

paper. Hee hee hee. Sorry. Moving on. Next one: I got the hat pull, and you'll see

it goes to this one. This is really long: "random sentence generator". And it seems

like it's really, really hard. I mean, this one we worked on vocabulary, right? Building

our vocabulary, remembering our vocabulary. The second trick, the "random sentence generator"

-- I just had to say it twice because it sounds so nice. Well, random sentence. You can use

this game to go to this game to make it more complicated or -- and "complicated" means

"difficult" -- you can just simply play it by itself. Take a word -- random. Okay, there's

a word, "random". Now, "generate" means "to create or make". Make a sentence like that

-- random. "He randomly created a sentence from nothing." Right? Yeah, I just took this

word and I just made it. I could say, "develop": "In order to develop your mind you have to

read many books." I'm going really quickly because I want you to understand that when

you do it randomly, it has to be quick. You can't say "blah, blah, blah" very slowly.

The whole thing is: speed. This will help you with English structure because if you

say it incorrectly, you or your friend will actually notice it and try and correct it.

What's the structure? Why can't you put "random" here or there? Is it a verb? Is it an adjective?

What is its purpose in a sentence when you're making the sentence? So by quickly and randomly

-- remember, "random" means "without structure"; it just happens -- making the sentence up

from the words you have or the vocabulary word, you'll understand its position or its

job in structure in a sentence. You like that? And if you put it with this one here, the

"hat pull", it's fun for the whole family. All right. I've got one more for you. This

one says, "Look at me now!" Square and square. Why is that? A lot of people have trouble

with prepositions, and English people use prepositions everywhere. We even put prepositions

in places we ought not to, okay? Oops. Did I just say "ought not to"? There we go. We

call them dangling modifiers or whatnot. What we want to do with this, with "look at me

now" is while you're in the middle of something, just stop yourself, and in the language -- or

English, in this case -- you're trying to learn, just stop, and in English try and tell

yourself what you're doing. "Right now, I am teaching." That's too easy. How about this:

"I am in a room -- there's my preposition -- teaching." I am standing on the second

floor." Other preposition, "on". "And we are at --" See, you keep going on and on. Just

use your prepositions, but just do it for what are you doing now. It's great. You can

be sitting in the toilet -- I'm sitting on the toilet in the bathroom. No, I'm not. If

the camera moves around, you'll notice it's a classroom. There's no toilet imagery, okay?

But I can use it to work on my prepositions. You can use it for other things, you know,

verbs and adjectives, working them into sentences, saying what are you doing now. "I am speaking

very slowly." When you use a modifier to show the speed of my speech, right? And I can do

that for other things. Cool? "You are learning very quickly." Got the modifier. You like

that? So this can be used for prepositions specifically, but you can turn around and

say, "What am I doing now?" Or, "look at me now" and then use, you know, describe it in

English as best you can -- pick a subject or an area you want to talk about, like my

verbs, my adjectives, my prepositions, or idioms, and then quickly try and use them

in the moment. It will help you master the language, and that's what I mean, actually

master the language. Well, I have given you three tricks -- a hat

trick, so to speak. Okay? Mr. E has helped out, of course, with the hat pull, remember?

Put words in a hat. Pull them out. It can be vocabulary. You can pick the type of vocabulary

-- specific vocabulary, whatever. You can use the random sentence generator, take these

same words, and have to make a sentence. When you really get advanced, and this is when

you really master the language, you can use two or three random words and put them in

one sentence. It's really cool, and it's really difficult. I've done as much as ten, but I'm

a native speaker. How many can you do? And then "look at me now". What are you doing now?

You're watching me. Where are you watching me? "I am in my living room watching you in

YouTube? On You -- on EngVid?" Which one is it? In or on? Figure it out, right? Speaking

of which, I'm sorry, it's time for me to go. But I've given you three cool tricks. You

can be the new teacher in your school. Teach your teacher. Teach your friends. But bring

them back. Bring them back to www.engvid.com as in "English video". Right? Where you'll

find me and my fantastic friend and several other teachers who want to teach you. And

before I forget: to make it easy so you don't have to be reminded, why don't you subscribe?

Hit "subscribe", and you'll know the latest video that I've completed. It will come right

to you direct. No effort on your part. Anyway, you have a great day, and I'll see you soon.

Mr. E, I'm out of here. Pull your own damn hat.

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