Category Archives: Level A2

use_of_articles

More about articles in English

More about articles in English (a, an, the and Ø )

NOTE: This is the second lesson for articles. If you have not completed level A1, we recommend you first look at this lesson (an introduction to articles)

Using articles in English can be very difficult as there are a lot of rules to remember. There are three articles in English ‘a’, ‘an’, ‘the’ and sometimes no article Ø is needed.

1. The indefinite article – A or AN

Examples of use of indefinite articles: Do you have a pen?  I need an umbrella.

2. The definite article – THE

Examples of use of definite articles: The boy lives at home. Here is the book I borrowed.

More about articles in English3. The zero article – this is used when no article is used, often shown as Ø in grammar books

Examples of zero articles: I like (Ø) dogs. (Ø) English exercises can be difficult.

Rules 1 to 4 are in the A1 lesson.

With uncountable nouns, we often use no article (Ø).

Examples:

  • I like wine (not the wine or a wine)
  • I listen to good advice (not the good advice or a good advice)

NOTE: Some nouns can be countable and uncountable.

Example:

  • Sleep is important
  • I am tired. I need a good sleep.

 


 

Articles – rule #6

The is used with superlatives.

Examples:

  • The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean in the world.
  • Lake Baikal in Russia is the deepest lake in the world.
  • Elephants are the biggest animals in Africa.

 

Articles – rule #7

No article (Ø) is used when talking generally about subjects / topics.

Examples:

  • Rugby is a great game.
  • I don’t like science.

 

Click here to try the ‘More about articles in English’ exercises.

Vocabulary for describing people

Vocabulary for describing people

Vocabulary for describing people

Before you start this exercise, check that you know the meaning of the following words:

  • naughty
  • anxious
  • Vocabulary for describing peoplegreedy
  • disappointed
  • polite
  • diligent
  • cheerful
  • depressed
  • messy
  • adventurous

Once you have checked the meaning of the words in the list above, complete each sentence using one of the words.

1. My friend Tom loves activities like mountain climbing, abseiling, white water rafting, bungee jumping and sky diving. In fact, it seems like dangerous situations excite him! Sometimes I wish I could have no fear like him. He is a veryperson.
Show the answer

Adventurous

2. My friend has a very important job interview today. He is really worried about it. He keeps biting his nails and seems so nervous. I told him to calm down and try to relax but he said he feels too.
Show the answer

Anxious

3. My friend just lost his job and his girlfriend broke up with him. He is feeling very down and. I’m not sure how to cheer him up.
Show the answer

Depressed

4. My friend’s dog never does what it’s told. It always runs in the house and breaks things. It is very. They need to learn how to discipline it better.
Show the answer

Naughty

5. My friend’s niece always smiles and laughs. She seems so happy. In fact, I don’t’ think I have ever seen her in a bad mood. She’s a veryperson.
Show the answer

Cheerful

6. My friend is so untidy. He almost never cleans his room. You should see it! It’s so! I told him he will never get a girlfriend if he doesn’t become a cleaner person.
Show the answer

Messy

7. My friend didn’t like what his girlfriend got him for his birthday. He looked so! But I told him he should stop being so picky and just appreciate the gift. I think he really hurt her feelings.
Show the answer

Disappointed

8. My friend studies so hard. She always gets her assignments done on time and gets great results. She’s so. I think I should try and be more like her.
Show the answer

Diligent

9. Ever since my friend got his new job, all he has cared about is money-money-money!! In the past he was so generous and money and possessions didn’t seem important to him. Now he is a very selfish andperson.
Show the answer

Greedy

10. My friend is a waitress. The job is perfect for her personality because she is always so kind and. Even when the customers are rude to her she keeps smiling and acts very professional.
Show the answer

Polite

 

talk

Speak or talk

Speak or talk

Speak and talk are ‘say’ words. However, there are some differences in when and how we use speak or talk.

Read the tips below about when to use speak or talk then try the practice exercises.

 

speak or talkSpeak or Talk Tip 1: ‘speak’ (not talk) is used on the telephone

  • Who’s speaking please? I’ll put you through to Mr Jones now.
  • Who’s talking please? I’ll put you through to Mr Jones now.

 

Speak or Talk Tip 2: ‘speak’ (not talk) is used in relation to languages

  • I speak English, French and Italian.
  • I talk English, French and Italian.

 

Speak or Talk Tip 3: ‘speak’ is more formal than ‘talk’

Can you see the difference between these two sentences?

  • My teacher wants to speak to me after class.
  • Can I talk to you when you’re free?

 

We often use ‘speak’ when:

  • the situation is a formal situation;
  • we don’t know the person we are talking to very well; and / or
  • the subject to be spoken about is serious / formal.

 

We often use ‘talk’ when:

  • we are talking to someone we know quite well, or
  • we may not know the person all that well but the subject we want to talk about is not serious / formal.

 

Speak or Talk Tip 4: ‘speak’ is used in relation to one person (the speaker), ‘talk’ is used to in relation to more than one person (a conversation)

Can you see the difference between these two sentences?

  • The boss will be speaking later about the proposed changes to company policy.
  • In today’s meeting, the team will be talking about new ideas for next year.

 

Speak or Talk Tip 5: The noun form of the verb ‘talk’ is ‘talk’, the noun form of the verb ‘speak’ changes to ‘speech’

  • He will be making a speech  after dinner.
  • She is giving a talk this afternoon.

Note: a ‘speech’ is more formal than a ‘talk’.

Also note the differences: ‘make’ a speech / ‘give’ a talk.

 

Speak or Talk Tip 6: ‘speak’ and ‘talk’ prepositions

The sentences we have used as examples so far all use the preposition ‘to’: talk to (someone), speak to (someone).

To make the sentence more formal / polite, we can use the preposition ‘with’.

  • “I must speak with you about your performance at work as soon as you are available.”

We also use the preposition ‘about‘ to talk about the subject of the conversation / speech / talk.

  • He will be making a speech about climate change at the conference.
  • She is giving a talk about healthy eating this afternoon.
  • Can I talk to you about our holiday plans?
  • I must speak to you about your progress with that report.

Now practice!

Read the sentences below. Are they correct? Should we use speak or talk?

1. (on the telephone) “Hello, I’d like to make an appointment for a haircut please.” “Sure, who’s talking please?”.

Show answerThis is incorrect. It should be: “Sure, who’s speaking please?”

2. He speaks Japanese fluently as he lived there for 10 years.

Show answerThis is correct.

3. ‘Hi, how are things? Are you free now? I want to speak with you about our plans for Saturday night.

Show answerThis is not correct. This is an informal situation involving people who know each other. It is better to say: I want to talk to you about our plans for Saturday night.

4. ‘Hello, it’s a pleasure to finally meet you. If you have some time I’d like to speak with you about a business proposal.

Show answerThis is correct.

5. It is a tradition for the groom, the bride’s father and the best man to give a speech at the wedding reception.

Show answerThis is incorrect. We should say ‘make a speech’ not ‘give a speech’.

6. We can speak about what food we need for the party later on.

Show answerThis is incorrect. The situation is informal involving a conversation. It is better to say: “We can talk about what food we need for the party later on.”

7. We have both lived in Australia, so we were talking to our experiences there.

Show answerThis is not the correct preposition. It should be: We have both lived in Australia, so we were talking about our experiences there.
say-and-tell

Say or tell

Say or tell

Say and tell are similar in that they both mean to talk or give information to someone verbally. However, there are differences in sentence construction and exact meaning.

Can you see the difference between these two sentences?

  • John told me you were sick last week.
  • John said you were sick last me.

Fill in the gaps below with either ‘tell’ or ‘say’ to show the first rule:

You ________ someone something but you _________ something to someone.

Show answersYou TELL someone something but you SAY something to someone.

Say or tellHere some more examples:

Jane said she liked my new shirt > Jane told me that she liked my new shirt

His boss said David had to stay late > His boss told David that he had to stay late

She said she loved me! > She told me that she loved me!

 

Tip 1: Using ‘that’ with told

When using told, you do not have to say ‘that’. For example, both of these are correct:

Jane told me that she liked my new shirt > Jane told me she liked my new shirt

His boss told David that he had to stay late > His boss told David he had to stay late

She told me that she loved me! > She told me she loved me!

 

Tip 2: Direct and reported speech

When you are using reported speech, you can use say and tell.

For example:

He said he would be late home. CORRECT

He told me he would be late home. CORRECT

However, when you are using direct speech, tell is used only when giving a command or instruction.

‘Take seat over there’ he told me.  CORRECT

‘Take a seat over there’ he said. CORRECT

‘It’s good to see you’ he told me. INCORRECT

‘It’s good to see you’ he said. CORRECT

 

Tip 3: When the person being spoken to is not mentioned.

He said he needed another few days to finish the job. CORRECT

He told that he needed another few days to finish the job. INCORRECT

He told Bob that he needed another few days to finish the job. (We know the person being spoken to is Bob) CORRECT

 

Now practice!

Are the following sentences correct?

1. He told me I had to work on Saturday.

Show answerThis is correct.

2. Dave told that he would be here soon.

Show answerThis is not correct. It should be ‘Dave said that he would be here soon.’ or ‘Dave told me that he would be here soon.’

3. ‘I think you should leave’ he told.

Show answerThis is not correct. This should be ‘said’.

4. ‘I’ll miss you’ his girlfriend said.

Show answerThis is correct.

5. Tell him to come in if he has time.

Show answerThis is correct.

6. Tell him to come in if he has time.

Show answerThis is correct.

7. She told to me to stay after class.

Show answerThis is not correct. After tell you don’t use ‘to’.
learning_new_vocabulary

10 tips for learning new vocabulary

10 tips for learning new vocabulary

Learning new vocabulary is crucial to improving your ability to communicate in English.

Linguists say that to ‘survive’ in any language, a speaker needs to have a vocabulary of about 120 basic words – this would enable you to do the basics like order food, give / understand directions etc.

10 tips for learning new vocabularyResearch shows that an average learner is capable or retaining 10-20 words per study hour. Assuming just 15 minutes of self-study per day, that would give a possible weekly vocabulary goal of 20-25 words and phrases.

Did you know that even a native speaker who has graduated from university still only has a vocabulary an average of about 30,000 words? Learning new vocabulary should be a life-long process for everyone!

Finding time to study, especially for people with full time jobs can be a challenge, but using certain stratagies can help to make learning new vocabulary easier and more enjoyable.

The video below has 10 useful techniques for learning new vocabulary.

If you follow these techniques, you will find that learning new vocabulary becomes more effective and your vocabulary will quickly expand.

Having a good vocabulary in English allows you to express yourself more clearly and accurately. The more you learn, the easier it becomes to expand your vocabulary.

Tip 1: Don’t try to learn too many new words at once

Making long lists of words is often not a very successful technique. Words and definitions can become mixed and confused. Focus on only 10 new words at one time, practicing and using them as much as possible. When you are confident you know them, find another 10 words and repeat the process.

Tip 2: Keep a vocabulary list

Make a short list of words that you want to learn, and keep that list with you wherever you go. A pocket-sized notebook, or the ‘notes’ function on a mobile phone, is a good way to start. You can also pin short lists of words around the house – above your bed, next to your computer, even in the back of the bathroom door! Keep your list well organised, with a clear structure. For example:

WORD WORD FAMILY SENTENCE
keyboard Noun I think it is easier to use a keyboard than write by hand.

 

You can also add a translation of the word in your own language, but be careful. Although this can be useful at a lower level of English, the more advanced your English becomes, the more you will find that words are not exact matches between languages, and you can miss subtle differences.

Tip 3: Use the words in a sentence

Research has proven that putting a word in context in a sentence is much more effective than trying to learn a word on its own. Create sentences that are true about you and your life. For example, if you were trying to learn the word ‘garden’, then think about where you live – do you have a garden? Does anyone you know have a garden that you like? Your example sentence should be about something personal to you.

Tip 4: Use a dictionary

Although this is an obvious tip, you can make a dictionary more effective for you by getting into the habit of looking up new words. We recommend using a paper dictionary, as you can then put a clear mark beside the word in a bright coloured pen and look through the dictionary from time to time refreshing your memory. If you find you have forgotten the word, put it back on your list and write another sentence to help you.

Tip 5: Test yourself

Free vocabulary tests are widely available on the internet, on this website and on our free app. You should also ask a friend to help you (if you followed Tip 4, you can hand them your dictionary and ask them to find a word you have marked and ask you for the meaning – or they can give you the meaning and you tell them the word).

Tip 6: Use the new word

When you learn a new word, it is common to find that you suddenly start hearing or seeing the word a lot more, and it becomes easier to remember. However, there are also times when you learn a new word and then don’t see it or use for a long time, and this will cause is to forget. One way to help you remember the word is to repeat it 5 or 6 times in a row, repeating this pattern every day for three or four days – this will help seal the new word in your long term memory.

Tip 7: Use word families

If you learn a new word – for example, happy – then find all the words in the same family (happily, happiness). That way you can quickly expand your vocabulary.

Tip 8: Read widely

This is definitely the best way to learn new words. It is also good practice to check what the word may mean in context.

Tip 9: Use a variety of ways to remember new words.

You don’t have to write new words to remember them. Some words are better drawn as pictures or acted out like a play, and flash cards, with the word on one side and a definition on the other, can also be very handy. Don’t feel you need to use the same techniques over and over again.

Tip 10: Find your vocabulary level

It can be helpful to find out your level of vocabulary, so you have some idea of what level you are. English vocabulary can be split into different levels, so take a look at the vocabulary section.

your-youre

Your and you’re

Your and you’re

Your and you'reThis is one of the most common errors you will see on the internet, even when written by native English speakers. To begin, test yourself by deciding whether these sentences are correct or incorrect.

1. You’re looking very well – have you been on holiday? This is correct | This is not correct
Show answerThis is correct. See below for the explanation.

2. This is you’re final warning! This is correct | This is not correct
Show answerThis is not correct. See below for the explanation.

3. Your friend telephoned this morning. This is correct | This is not correct
Show answerThis is correct. See below for the explanation.

4. Your our teacher for the day, aren’t you? This is correct | This is not correct
Show answerThis is not correct. See below for the explanation.

 

Step 1: The first step towards using you’re and your correctly is to understand the difference between them.

You’re – this is a contraction of two words – you are (a subject and a verb)

Your – this is a possessive pronoun, showing belonging or ownership.

 

Step 2: The easiest way to check the correct form is to expand the contraction you’re into you are. Take a look at the sentences below.

1. You’re looking very well – have you been on holiday? > You are looking very well – have you been on holiday?

2. This is you’re final warning!  > This is you are final warning

 

Step 3: For your with meaning of possession or ownership, you should be able to replace Your with My and the sentence would still be correct.

For example:

3. Your friend telephoned this morning. > My friend telephoned this morning.

4. Your our teacher for the day, aren’t you?  > My our teacher for the day, aren’t you?

 

Now test yourself!

1. If you’re often tired, you should go to bed earlier.

Show answerThis is correct. Without the contraction, the sentence reads If you are tired

 

2. I think your smile is beautiful!

Show answerThis is correct. Changing your to my, this reads  I think my smile is beautiful.

 

3. I think your beautiful!

Show answerThis is NOT correct. Changing your to my, this reads  I think my beautiful. It should say ‘I think you are beautiful, so should be you’re

 

4. Our staff are available to answer your questions.

Show answerThis is correct. Changing your to my, this reads Our staff are available to answer my questions.

 

5. Your a lot like your brother in appearance, although you have very different personalities.

Show answerThis is NOT correct. Changing your to my, this reads My a lot like your brother in appearance…

 

6. I don’t think you’re being very kind.

Show answerThis is correct. Without the contraction, the sentence reads I don’t think you are being very kind.

 

7. Your going to have to leave soon, so you should get your coat on.

Show answerThis is NOT correct. Changing your to my, the sentence would read My going to have to leave soon, so you should get my coat on. The second your is correct, but the first one should be you’re.

 

8.  I have to say that you’re a terrible driver! Look at all the damage on your car!

Show answerThis is correct, as you can see by using the two techniques mentioned above. I have to say that you are a terrible driver! Look at all the damage on my car!

 

And to finish, here are some useful tips…

– If the word that follows is an article (a, an, the), then it should be you’re. Compare: You’re the best! Your the best!

– If the word that follows is an adjective (a describing word). then it should GENERALLY be you’re. Compare: You’re beautiful! Your beautiful.

reference-words

Understanding reference words

Understanding reference words

What’s wrong with this sentence?

Some people believe that a university education should be available to everyone as a university education will help with employment.

The problem here is that ‘university education’ has been repeated – the sentence would have been better presented using a reference word like this:

Some people believe that a university education should be available to everyone as this will help with employment.

Reference words (words that refer back to a previous word or phrase but without repeating it) are very common many reading texts and can often cause some confusion. An important part of understanding a text is being able to identify the reference words and their relationship to other words, phrases or sentences.

Test your skills – what do the underlined words refer to? Choose the correct letter A-C.

Understanding reference wordsNew Zealand is becoming an increasingly popular destination for overseas visitors. It attracts tourists and people on business, but the vast majority come as students. Mostly from Asian countries, they stay for anything from a few weeks to a few years or more, studying at language schools, colleges and universities. New Zealand can offer good homestay accommodation, a clean and beautiful environment and a reasonable cost of tuition. These factors attract an ever-increasing number of overseas students, accounting for millions of dollars in revenue for New Zealand.

It refers to

(a) overseas

(b) New Zealand

(c) a popular destination

Show answer(B) – New Zealand

 

They refers to

(a) Asian countries

(b) tourists and business people

(c) students

Show answer(C) – students

 

These factors refers to

(a) accommodation, environment and reasonable tuition costs

(b) schools, colleges, universities

(c) increasing overseas students

Show answer(A) – accommodation, environment and reasonable tuition costs

 

Now try using reference words the other way round. What reference word could replace the underlined words?

  1. Professor Edwards has been lecturing for 16 years.
  2. Overseas students often find university courses difficult.
  3. The IELTS test is becoming increasingly popular.
  1. Professor Edwards … Show answerHe
  2. Overseas students … Show answerThey
  3. The IELTS test … Show answerIt

 

Tip 1: Subject or object reference words

Be careful – reference words can change depending on whether they are the subject or the object of the sentence. For example:

Overseas students often find university courses difficult.

  • They often find university courses difficult.
  • Overseas students often find them difficult.

Mr Smith works with Mr Jones every day.

  • He works with Mr Jones every day.
  • Mr Smith works with him every day.

 

Tip 2: Singular and plural

When talking generally, you may find that some singular nouns take a plural reference word. For example:

A teacher (singular) should always be prepared. They (plural) should also be punctual.
Tip 3: The dummy subject

Sometimes ‘it’ can appear in a sentence but it is not a true reference word – it doesn’t refer back to anything specific. This is called the dummy subject. For example:

It is commonly accepted that people with a higher education generally work in higher paid jobs.

In the sentence above, ‘it’ does not refer to anything specific, just the general situation.

Practice by reading the sentences below and deciding whether ‘it’ is used as a reference word or a dummy subject.

  1. Look at those clouds. It’s going to rain.
  2. Homework is essential. It allows students to review work they have studied in class.
  3. Admittedly, student depression is hard to investigate as few people are willing to talk openly about it.
  4. It can take up to four years to complete a degree.
  5. Otago is a very popular university. It was the first university in New Zealand.

1.  Show answerThis is a dummy subject

2.  Show answerThis is a reference word

3.  Show answerThis is a reference word

4.  Show answerThis is a dummy subject

5.  Show answerThis is a reference word

 

Now test yourself. Read the text below and decide what the underlined reference words refer to.

Academic overdrive?

Student life is becoming increasingly difficult. Not only are students expected to perform and compete within the class, but also to devote time and energy to extra-curricular activities as well as struggle with an increasing load of homework. The push to get into the top universities has caused many overachieving students to take on heavier workloads and more challenging classes.

This push, however, doesn’t end once students reach university. In fact, when they reach the top places they have worked so hard to get into, many students are forced to work even harder than they did in high school. Once in the top universities, the pressure is on to secure a place in the top graduate school. But it doesn’t end there. Once students have graduated with the best results, they find that they must continue to overextend themselves in order to secure the top jobs in their particular field. Such is the emphasis on academic success.

There are many who claim that this entire system is wrong because it puts too much emphasis on measuring achievement and not enough on true learning. This in turn has inevitable effects on the students themselves. In such a high-pressure learning environment, those that find the pressure overwhelming have nowhere to turn. In an academic world measured only by academic success, many students begin to feel a low sense of worth, yet they fear to turn to anyone for help as this would be perceived as a signal of failure, an inability to cope with that which other students appear to have no problem. This can be particularly hard for foreign students as they find themselves isolated without familiar cultural or family ties in their new environment and thus they concentrate solely on their work.

Perhaps the main thing to remember is that although it is important to study hard, school life should also be fun.

  1. This push refers to…… Show answerThe push to get into top universities
  2. They refers to…… Show answerOverachieving students (not just ‘students’)
  3. It refers to…… Show answerThe pressure
  4. There refers to…… Show answerAt top universities
  5. This refers to…… Show answerOverachieving / overextending / pressurised (system)
  6. Those refers to…… Show answerStudents who have overextended themselves
  7. This refers to…… Show answerThe situation where students feel depressed, have low self esteem, feel that they cannot talk to anyone
complaining-in-english

Complaining in English

Complaining in English

Complaining in EnglishWhen you have a problem and you need to complain, there are ways of expressing yourself politely as you look for a solution. Being too direct is considered rude and will often lead to the staff in the shop being less willing to help.

Imagine you have just bought a new mobile phone, but when you get home and open the box the screen is cracked. When you go back to the shop, which of the sentences below is best to say?

A. This is broken. Give me a new one or a refund.

B. I hope you can help. I have just bought this phone, and the screen seems to be cracked. Would you be able to replace it or provide a refund?

Hopefully you would have selected the second sentence (B). There are a number of reasons why this is a better sentence, as explained below.

Tip 1: Avoid giving commands

‘Give me a new one’, ‘Fix it now’, ‘Give me my money back’ – these are all commands which are less likely to end well. It is much better to phrase your request as an indirect question. In the examples above, the command ‘Give me’ in Sentence A has changed to ‘Would you be able to…?’ in Sentence B.

Tip 2: Start in a friendly way

When complaining in English, it is common to start your sentence with a friendly expression like ‘I hope you can help’. In fact, it is even common for English speaking people to apologise before they start to complain! ‘Sorry, but this phone seems to be broken’. Here are some other expressions that are commonly used when complaining:

  • I’m sorry, but this doesn’t seem to be the correct change.
  • Excuse me, but I don’t think you gave me the correct change.
  • I’m afraid that there may have been a mistake with my change.
  • Sorry to bother you, but I don’t think you gave me the correct change.

Tip 3: Don’t be too dogmatic (too strong)

In our example sentences at the top of the page, the speaker is sentence A says ‘This is broken’, while the speaker in sentence B says ‘The screen seems to be cracked’. Clearly, the screen is either cracked or not – how can it be ‘seems to be cracked’? The reason is that when complaining in English, we tend to avoid being too dogmatic, softening the sentence with words like:

  • The screen seems to be cracked.
  • The screen appears to be cracked.
  • It looks as though the screen has cracked.
  • I think the screen may have cracked.

So what happens if you have politely expressed your point of view and you still don’t get a suitable response? For example:

Customer: I hope you can help. I have just bought this phone, and the screen seems to be cracked. Would you be able to replace it or provide a refund?

Shop assistant: It’s your fault. It’s not my problem.

At this point, it’s important not to start aggressively arguing. You need to state your case calmly and clearly. For example:

Customer: Actually, I didn’t open the box until I got home, and it was in this condition before I even touched it. I understand that I have the right to request a replacement or a refund. If you are unable to help, I would like to talk to your your manager or supervisor.

 

 

Commonly confused words – LISTEN or HEAR?

Commonly confused words – LISTEN or HEAR?

Although they have similar meanings, there are significant differences that you need to know!

Listen / Hear

We ‘listen’ to something when we focus on it and pay attention to it.

We ‘hear’ something that comes into our ears. It is not necessarily deliberate or intentional.

Commonly confused words - LISTEN or HEAR?For example:

  • I was trying to watch television but all I could hear was my neighbour playing his guitar.
  • I went outside so I could listen to my neighbour play his guitar

Test yourself! Select the correct answer from the list for each gap

  1. When you ask someone for directions, it is important towhat they are saying.
  2. Ia noise outside – perhaps you should go and take a look?
  3. I was trying toto the teacher’s instructions, but she has a very quiet voice and I couldn’ther.
  4. to that! It sounds like John’s car!
  5. Where I work, we canthe radio if we want to.
  6. I think there’s a storm coming – I justsome thunder.
  7. I was talking to friend who is overseas, but she couldn’tme because the phone line wasn’t clear.
  8. The problem with some people is they nevergood advice!
Click here to see the answers
1. When you ask someone for directions, it is important to LISTEN TO what they are saying.
2. I HEARD a noise outside – perhaps you should go and take a look?
3. I was trying to LISTEN TO the teacher’s instructions, but she has a very quiet voice and I couldn’t HEAR her.
4. LISTEN TO that! It sounds like John’s car!
5. Where I work, we can LISTEN TO the radio if we want to.
6. I think there’s a storm coming – I just HEARD some thunder.
7. I was talking to friend who is overseas, but she couldn’t HEAR me because the phone line wasn’t clear.
8. The problem with some people is they never LISTEN TO good advice!

 


 

listening-test

Level A2 Listening practice 1

Level A2 Listening practice 1

Test your listening skills with this listening exercise.

We strongly recommend that you do not pause the recording during this listening exercise. If you cannot answer all of the questions the first time, play the recording again.

 

Number of correct answers:

  • Level A2 Listening practice 11-3 correct: go back to Level A1 to build your skills.
  • 4-6 correct: you need more practice
  • 7-8 correct: well done!
  • 9-10 correct: great! You might be ready for Level B1

Background:
You will hear 2 people. The woman works for a car rental company and the young man wants to rent a car.


Questions 1-10

Questions 1-5

Complete the form below.

Write NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS AND/OR A NUMBER for each answer.

Northern Rental Bookings

Name: William (1)
Show answerWaddell (exact spelling required for this point)

Contact number: (2) 07
Show answer263 8666 (if you have this number in a different format, for example with different spacing, it would still be marked correct)

Address: 10 (3) Nelson
Show answerRobyn Place (exact spelling required for this point)

Payment by credit card type: (4) card.
Show answerVisa (‘credit’ is not enough to get this marked as correct)

Card No. 4550 1392 8309 3221

Card expiry date: July 20XX

Rental period: (5) days
Show answer10 (‘days’ is not required as this is included in the question)


Questions 6 to 10

Answer the following questions USING NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS OR A NUMBER

  1. How much is the car per day?
    Show answer$35
  2. What does the price include?
    Show answerUnlimited kilometres
  3. Who will he be visiting?
    Show answerRelatives
  4. What kind of car does the agent recommend?
    Show answer(An) automatic
  5. What does he need to collect the car?
    Show answerDriving license / Drivers license (‘a driving licence’ would be incorrect as this is three words when the instructions state ‘NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS’ )

 

Show All correct answers

Show the transcript
Receptionist Good morning, Sir. How can I help you?
William Hello. ls this Southern Rental Car?
Receptionist Yes. it is.
William I wonder if you could help me. I’m ringing from Nelson, but I’m coming over to Auckland
for 12 days and I’d like to hire a car
Receptionist Okay, I’ll fill in a booking for you now. First, can l take your name?
William Yes, it’s William Waddell.
Receptionist Sorry, could you spell your surname?
William Yes, it’s W A D D E L L
Receptionist Thanks. Now, can I have an address and a phone number?
William Sure. I live at 10 Robyn Place. That’s R O B Y N Place.
Receptionist And that’s Nelson, isn’t it?
William That’s right. Do you want my home number or my mobile?
Receptionist Home number will be fine.
William OK, it’s
Receptionist Great. Now, can I also have a credit card number?
William Do I have to pay by credit card?
Receptionist Well, we need to credit card number as a guarantee. It’s a standard policy for car rentals.
William OK, well I’ll pay by Visa then. The card number is 4550…1392…8309…3221
Receptionist And the expiry date?
William Sorry?
Receptionist Your card – when does it expire?
William Oh, next July.
Receptionist Right. Now, how long did you want the car for? Twelve days did you say?
William No, I only need the car for 10 days, from the 2nd to the 11th of next month.

Receptionist Now, what type of car are you looking to hire?
William Well, I’m not too worried about the model of the car but I understand that you have rental cars from just $25 a day. Is that correct?
Receptionist We do sometimes have the $25 deals, but only in the low season. For the period you are looking at, the cheapest we have is $35. However, that price includes unlimited kilometres.
William Sorry, did you say unlimited kilometres? What does that mean exactly?
Receptionist That means that no matter how far you go, the cost is the same. Some companies charge for rental and then charge again for every kilometre you actually drive.
William Well l am going to be travelling quite long distances – I’m visiting relatives and they live quite far apart from each other, so unlimited kilometres are probably a good idea.
Receptionist If you’re travelling long distances, you would be better off with an automatic. Changing gears in a manual can make it more expensive for petrol.
William OK, I’ll take an automatic then.
Receptionist Right, so that’s an automatic car for 10 days from the 2nd to the 11th. That’s all booked. Is there anything else I can help you with?
William No that’s fine. Oh, sorry – what do I need to bring with me when I pick up the car?
Receptionist All you need is your driving licence.
William Right, well thanks very much. Bye.