субота, 11 березня 2017 р.

субота, 4 березня 2017 р.

The importance of being familiar with languages like Latin and Greek

Multiple times I've heard the same question: “In this day of computers, and the triumph of science and technology, when there is so much to learn and so little time, why study monotonous dead languages?” The study of Latin and Greek languages can bring enormous benefits and provide students with a better understanding of the roots of foreign languages, especially English. It has been strongly influenced by antique languages such as Roman and Greek.

Students who study Latin and Greek develop an interest in words. These dead languages attract their attention and they learn something they had never thought of before and it makes a beneficial effect on them. Words don’t just drop out of the sky—they come from some place; words have a history, sometimes a very long and interesting history. Many words are world travelers, traveling from Greece to Rome to France to England. Words are fascinating.

Many words in English are formed from a set of Latin and Greek roots. A root is the basic part of a word and it carries the main meaning and may appear by itself. Very often you can misunderstand or mistranslate some words because you are unfamiliar with them. Don't be concerned, because knowing the roots of such words may help to guess their meaning when you see them in context.

My advice is - not detract the importance of learning the most commonly used Latin and Greek roots. It's obvious, that exists the multitude of prefixes and suffixes and you can't remember all of them, but you must know the list of prescribed most commonly used roots. Nothing happens overnight and it's important to have a good rest, so if you are overtired, it's better to postpone your learning process for the next time. You should understand, that it is important to manage your time and supervise the process of building your vocabulary.  

I've chosen a text from Upstream B2+ (SB) - “The magic of pantomime” (Unit 5)



четвер, 2 березня 2017 р.

Online tools and resources for vocabulary building

   Dear friend,

   How are you? Do you agree with me that nobody can learn a foreign language with remarkable easeIt's obvious, that we should make a lot of efforts and concentrate our mind on the subject if we want to make progress in building our vocabulary.

    As far as I know, you make the most of learning English and I'd like to make a contribution to your studying.  The point is that we need to keep up with modern technologies. So I want you to make yourself understood that it's important to be aware of new learning opportunities because they really can help you to achieve a goal much sooner.

   There is a wide range of effective online tools and resources, which become a part and parcel of our modern life. I'm sure, they can become an alternative of all these paper dictionaries, which you used to use. For instance, I also use some online dictionaries and tools such as:

1. Your Dictionary

2. Mnemonic Dictionary

3. The Free Dictionary

4. Graph Words - a free English online thesaurus that helps me find the meanings of words and show connections among associated words.

5. Free rice -  is a site where I can practice matching words to the correct definition, and donate rice at the same time. What is interesting, that for each correct answer, the United Nations World Food Programme donates 10 grains of rice to a country in need.


   I believe that if you explore different ways of learning English, you will make an improvement and find an appropriate resource for you and it will work for you.

   Good luck!

My flashcard:

неділя, 19 лютого 2017 р.

Using dictionaries effectively

   Nowadays learning foreign languages is a very important part of our life. But it’s obvious that nothing happens overnight and you can achieve your goals only by trial and error.
   You should remember that it’s better to start learning language from building your vocabulary. Do your best, because it’s the tip of the iceberg. First and foremost, you should make the most of learning vocabulary. It means: to know a word when you see it; to know when you hear it; to know how to use it; understand what it means.
   You should concentrate the mind on avoiding common mistakes, which you can make using dictionaries. These are some of them:
  • Don’t use a dictionary all the time. Remember, you can’t learn a language just by using a dictionary. You can try to guess the meaning of unknown words from the context instead of looking them up in the dictionary.
  • Dictionary can’t be your teacher. It only tells what a word means, but it doesn’t tell you how to use the word. So use a dictionary to check, not to learn.
  • Remember that not everything can be translated. This is a reason to use a bilingual dictionaries as less as possible. A monolingual dictionary helps you to learn English through English. As a result, your English slowly but surely will become more fluent and natural. It’s a good study habit, which will help you to make progress.

   You should make yourself understood that your vocabulary will expand only if you learn how to use your dictionary correctly. Know you dictionary and know yourself, and you’ll be victorious with remarkable ease in every conversation you have! 

The word I tend to misspell on a regular basis: 
  • Jewelry - personal ornaments, such as necklaces, rings, or bracelets, that are typically made from or contain jewels and precious metal.

A few pairs of words that I often confuse:
  • accept - to agree to receive or do;
    except - not including                                      
    Ex.: He has recently accepted a position as editor of one famous magazine.               They work every day except Sunday.
  • cue - signal for action, a wooden rod;  
    queue - a line of people or vehicles    
     Ex.: When the cue hits the object ball it will bend the tangent line back away from the corner.          
    Upon the group's return, a queue of vehicles had lined up to go across the river.
  • loose - to unfasten, to set free; 
    lose - to be deprived of, to be unable to find    
    Ex.: The sheep had got out and were loose on the road.
    I've lost my keys.
Words that entered the dictionary in 2016:
  • Brubru - a small tropical African shrike (bird) with striking black-and-white plumage and chestnut flanks.

  • Glam-ma - a glamorous grandmother, especially one who is relatively young or fashion-conscious.

  • Mini-mall - a shopping mall containing a relatively small number of retail outlets and with access to each shop from the outside rather than from an interior hallway.

  • Teleporter - a device for teleporting people or things from one place to another, especially a machine which breaks matter down into its constituent particles or converts it into energy, information, etc.

My word cloud:

неділя, 12 лютого 2017 р.

Techniques of vocabulary building

  Words are referred to as 'the building blocks of language'. These are powerful tools. And it goes without saying that if you want to use these tools effectively, you need to have a good vocabulary and be able to use it.
   Take into consideration that if you want to be good in English, increasing the vocabulary should be your's primary goal. Unfortunately, very often we have many problems with expanding our vocabulary. But nowadays, there are many different techniques which you can use to build your vocabulary in a proper and easy way.
   Improving your vocabulary does not need to be boring or time-consuming. Actually, you only need to follow some rules:
  1. Repeat, repeat, repeat... If you are a visual learner and you must see things to remember them, so you have to write new words down. Personally, I really like this method because I'm a visual learner too. And as soon as I write some words, my brain remembers them.
  2. Draw pictures. You can draw the picture and put the unknown word inside this picture.
  3. Make a sentence. When you learn a new word, make your own sentence with it. The point is that making it, you are proving your grammar and also repeating, repeating, repeating the new vocabulary word.
  4. Use it or lose it. I mean that you need to practice or else you would forget. So it's important to go through the list of words that you have made and practice them on daily basis.
   I hope these pieces of advice will help you to choose your own strategy of vocabulary building.
   It's obvious that nothing happens overnight and you can face difficulties, but remember: only making great efforts will bring enormous benefits. Good luck!

The article I've chosen: 

The list of new words:


to heal
to rejuvenate
to kick


phrasal verbs:
to cut back on
get into
add up

start a day off
get checkups
"once-in-a-while" basis
a myriad of problems
take full advantage of your benefits
help combat depression
keeping emotions bottled up inside

My lexical notebook: