Conversation Skills: How to agree or disagree


Hi, there, everybody. Today, we're doing a general class on having an argument, giving

an opinion. Okay? Useful words for giving opinions, agreeing, disagreeing. This is something

you have to do in so many walks of life, in so many situations, whether it's with your

girlfriend, boyfriend, wife, whether it's with your boss, your mom, your dad. Many times,

we find ourselves making a point, saying something, having something that is slightly different

to the other person. Okay? It's life.

We're going to start with giving opinions. Now, we might start with an adverb like "personally".

Okay? Or "frankly". So "person" -- you can see the word "person". When we say "personally",

it's about this person; it's about me. "Me, I think this." "Personally, I would say that

--." "Personally, I think that --."

Now, let's spend today talking about the issue of whether you should give money to the homeless

man. "Personally, I think lots of people give money to them." Or, "Personally, I think they

need the money." Or, "Frankly" -- this means "honestly". "Frankly, I think charity starts

at home." That's a phrase that means, "If I'm going to be kind, I need to be kind to

me." "Frankly, I don't want to give them any money." Okay?

Now, what I've done here is I've marked which ones are good to use in a work situation and

which ones are more informal. So where I have marked, this is good to use at work. "Personally",

"I'd say that". But "I reckon" and "if you ask me", these are more casual ways of speaking.

"If you ask me, I think the bloke's taking the piss, mate." Okay? "If you ask me, I think

the bloke's taking the piss." He's having a laugh. Okay? "I reckon he really needs some

coins." Okay? So this is the one you can use at work. "I'd say that you have to think about

it and balance the options up." I don't know.

What do you think? Have a go now. Personally, I think that -- go on. Give me a sentence.

Great. Good work.

Now, you've presented your first opinion, and someone is agreeing with you. Let's practice

agreeing with someone, okay? "Definitely! I mean, it's so cold in London. You should

give some money to them." Okay? "Definite." "Definite" means certain. Okay? It's the same

as "certainly". "Certainly" would be very -- too formal, though." Okay? "Definitely.

You're right." Or if you like what they're saying, you agree, you could say, "I think

so, too. I mean, it must be a difficult life." Yeah? These are all phrases you could use

in a work situation. Okay? All of these are good for work. They're not informal ones.

"I think so, too. I mean, it's really cold at the moment." "You're right. I mean, imagine

not having a home or somewhere to go to the bathroom." "That's a good point. I agree with

you." Okay? "I agree. It's really sad that they're living under a bridge." Okay? So these

are all ways of agreeing. "Definitely. You're right. That's a good point."

Giving opinions, I could say "personally, frankly, if you ask me". These are my informal

ones. These are my formal ones. Formal. Good for work. Good for the pub. Great.

Now, let's disagree. Let's disagree with Mother. "Yes, Mom. But they don't have any money to

spend on a sandwich." Okay? So I'm disagreeing. I think something different to Mom. "You see,

I don't agree, Mom. I think it's nice to be generous." Or you could say, "I don't know

about that." Okay? Listen to the pronunciation. "I don't know about that." This is how it's

spelled, "I don't know", and we say, "I dunno about that." Okay?

"Hmm. I'm not sure about that. I'm not certain." It's polite. We're disagreeing. We know that

we disagree, but we're polite, so we say, "I'm not sure. I think maybe it's a nice idea

to give them 10p." Or "I'm not sure about that. I'm not sure that I like that idea."

Okay? You're still disagreeing. It's an English, English way of talking. We're very polite,

yeah? Sometimes, anyway. Not the drivers.

"I don't go along with you." Okay? If I go along with my friend to the beach, I go along

with them. But if I don't know along, no. I think something different. So, "No. I don't

go along with you on that. I think blah, blah, blah, blah, blah."

"That's a good point, a good argument, but blah, blah, blah, blah, blah." "Surely you

can't give all your money to them because then, you would be like them." Okay? "Surely",

so you're emphasizing.

Now, what do we do once we've given our opinion? We give opinion; we give evidence; we give

facts. "Yes, but in winter, it's minus five degrees Celsius. It's very inhospitable. It's

a very difficult place to live on the street." And we could exaggerate the rule of three.

So if I disagree with giving money to a homeless person, I could say that they have somewhere

to live; they're funding a drink problem; and I don't have any money to give them anyway.

Or if I'm doing it the other way around, I could say -- rule of three, so I give three

points -- "Imagine if you were like them. Wouldn't life be so difficult?" Or, "It's

so cold at night, and no one talks to you. You have nowhere to go." Have I made any sense?

I do so hope so, kind viewer.

Look. We've looked at giving an opinion. We used words like "personally", "I would say

that". Look. This is short for "I would say that". "If you asked me, I would say that."

It's a polite phrase. Again, "I would say that."

We've looked at agreeing. We've said "definitely". "You're right. That's a good point. I agree

with you." Okay? You make these little noises, these sounds, and then you make an argument.

This is just the start. The start, and then you carry on to give an opinion and reasons.

And with the disagreeing, we've had, "Yes but -- reason". "I don't agree because --." Okay?

Don't forget to carry on.

Becoming more fluent in English is all about increasing the amount of time you spend talking

and listening. Don't just give short answers. Give long answers. So right now, we're thinking

about giving money to the homeless people. Give me a sentence with "definitely", with

agreeing with giving money. "Definitely" -- and then disagree." Okay? You can do that on your

own time.

So your homework, you're going to do an agree; you're going to do a disagree. And then, you're

going to go to, and you're going to take my quiz. Ten short questions,

ten short answers. Okay? Not too difficult. And then, go and subscribe to my YouTube channel.

And if you really love me like I know you do, then, you can check out my website, Exquisite

English. There should be a link here.

Well done. I know you're trying hard. Keep the good work up. Bye!