Verbs that Function Both as Regular and Irregular

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

One of the least talked about subjects in the English Language are verbs, whose conjugations are both regular and irregular. Some are probably thinking why that is the case. There are two arguments for why they are not even mentioned in the classroom:

1. The endings are different but the meanings are the same. This argument applies for the different endings between British and American, where the past and perfect endings have either a -t or an -ed at the end. In many cases they can be used interchangeably. Example of such include

Dream (present) Dreamed/ Dreamt (past simple) Dreamed/ Dreamt (perfect)

Smell (present) Smelled/Smellt (past simple) Smelled/Smellt (perfect)

The same applies for irregular tenses, where a verb both have a regular and irregular form but the meanings are the same and are sometimes used in both types of English. This includes:

Wet (present) Wet/Wetted (past simple) Wet/Wetted (perfect)

Dive (present) Dove/Dived (past simple) Dived (perfect)

.

2. People would understand the meaning of the words without having to make the difference in conjugation. Two examples come to mind that would counter this argument:

Lie: Lie has two different conjugations but also two different meanings. You can lie to the person to save yourself from trouble, but you cannot lay unless you’re speaking a “red neck” version of English. 😉 By the same token, one can lie down or lay down for taking a nap.

Find: Find has a past tense that has a conjugation of its own. You can found a company and establish it from the ground up, but when you say I find a company (or even finded), then you discovered the company either by research on the internet or by chance while playing hide and seek. 😉

.

Then there is the third argument which states that the numbers are so few that it would make no sense to learn them. English, like any other foreign language features vocabulary whose difference in pronunciation (including homophones) and lettering (including the affixes) produce different meanings. Therefore it is important to cover all the aspects of each word, including the meanings and the context. This is important especially when translating the words into your own language because each word has a different equivalent, regardless of how the English word is conjugated.

I did some research and asked some of the native speakers and experts who taught English and found that verbs with both types of conjugation can be divided up into different categories. The German translations for each word is marked in orange. They include the following:

.

American <=> British Type 1:  Word pairs that have the same meaning but the endings in past/perfect tenses are both –ed and –t. As a rule, the irregular forms are typically British English; the regular forms are typically American

VerbPresent + V-ingPast SimplePerfect FormMeaning/ Translation
dreamdreamingdreameddreamedTo think of something while sleeping
dreamdreamingdreamtdreamtGerman: schlafen
     
learnlearninglearnedlearnedTo collect knowledge for future use
learnlearninglearntlearntGerman: lernen
     
spoilspoilingspoiledspoiledTo ruin a food product or event
spoilspoilingspoiltspoiltGerman: verderben
     
burnburningburnedburnedTo apply heat to a surface sometimes causing a fire
burnburningburntburntGerman: brennen
     
leanleaningleanedleanedTo tilt against someone or something
leanleaningleantleantGerman: neigen
     
smellsmellingsmelledsmelledTo have a scent of an object or area
smellsmellingsmeltsmeltGerman: riechen
     
spillspillingspilledspilledTo empty the contents onto a surface
spillspillingspiltspiltGerman: verschütten oder verstreuen
     

.

American <=> British Type 2 Word pairings where even though the meaning is the same, the verb endings with –ed are used in British English; in American English they stay the same and are considered irregular verbs.

VerbPresent + V-ingPast SimplePerfect FormMeaning/ Translation
quitquittingquittedquittedTo discontinue doing
quitquittingquitquitGerman: aufhören
     
wetwettingwettedwettedTo add fluid to a surface to make it softer
wetwettingwetwetGerman: nass machen

.

Regular British and Irregular American Forms:  Word pairings that function both as a regular as well as an irregular verb form but have the same meaning; can be used in both British and American English.

VerbPresent + V-ingPast SimplePerfect FormMeaning/ Translation
lightlightinglightedlightedTo make glow
lightlightinglitlitGerman: beleuchten, anzünden, Feuer machen, u.A.
     
divedivingdiveddivedTo jump head first into the water; to drop rapidly
divedivingdovedivedGerman: Kopfsprung machen; fallen/ sinken

.

Present Pairs with Different Meanings: Word pairs where each verb in present simple tense has a different meaning per conjugated regular and irregular form

Verb Present + V- ing Past Simple Perfect Form Meaning/ Translation
ringringingringedringedForming a circle around something/ German: kreiseln
ringringingrangrungMaking a sound like a bell on a telephone/ German: ringen
     
shineshiningshinedshinedTo polish/ German: polieren
shineshiningshoneshoneTo glow or cast with light/ German: scheinen
     
slayslayingslayedslayedTo strongly impress someone/ German: beeindrücken
slayslayingslewslainTo kill or destroy/ German:  töten od. zerschlagen
     
hanghanginghunghungTo attach something high off the ground and allow to sway/ German: hängen
hanghanginghangedhangedTo be suspended by neck in mid-air, causing death/ German:  erhängen
     
abide abidingabidedabidedTo continue to live and act in a similar fashion/  German fortbestehen; ertragen
abideabidingabodeabodeTo live in a home/dwelling/residence   German: leben/wohnen

.

Past Pairs with Different Meanings: Word pairs whose past simple tense form has its own set of conjugations and meaning. The past tense version functions as a regular verb form.

VerbPresent + V-ing Past Simple Perfect Form Meaning/ Translation
findfindingfoundfoundLook for something/ finden
foundfoundingfoundedfoundedEstablishing a business or organization/   German: (be)gründen
     
windwindingwoundwoundWrap around something/   German: (auf)wickeln
woundwoundingwoundedwoundedTo injure someone’s feelings or through a knife-stab or gunshot/   German: verletzen
     
fallfallingfellfallenTo drop down to the ground from above/ German: fallen
fellfellingfelledfelledTo cut down a tree or tall object / German: fällen
     
feelfeelingfeltfeltTo sense something/ German: (sich) fühlen
feltfeltingfeltedfeltedTo try and perceive or twist/ German: wahrnehmen/ empfinden
     
seeseeingsawSeenTo look at something with the eyes/  German:  sehen
sawsawingsawedsawnTo cut apart a tree or object with a saw/ German:  segen
     
bearbearingborebornTo make into life; tolerate/    German: gebären; tolerieren
boreboringboredboredTo make uninteresting or tiring/   German: langweilen; langweilig machen

.

Despite having a list for each of the categories, I also concluded that there are more examples of such verbs in English that exist, yet they are at best seldomly mentioned. Furthermore there may be a little bit of leeway in terms of the word pairs and the meanings. Therefore I would like to ask you to mention any further examples that you know in the language that fit into one of the five abovementioned categories. Any missing verbs will be added including the conjugations and the German translations. You will do yourself, yours truly as well as teachers of English as a Foreign Language and the students (regardless of age and school) a big favor. 🙂

Photo by Lina Kivaka on Pexels.com

.

Useful Sources:

https://benjweinberg.com/2018/02/26/english-corner-regular-and-irregular-verbs/

http://www.myenglishgrammar.com/lesson-2-verbs/4-regular-and-irregular-verbs.html

.

.

“No means NO!” A look at the many ways to reject an offer in English

Photo by Charlotte May on Pexels.com

Imagine this scenario: a stranger offers a child a ride to school, or offers a woman to a cup of tea, or offers a group of people to go to a free show in a theater, etc. You want to say no, but you want to find a creative alternative to the words “No thank you.” Furthermore, you would like to know which of the expressions are more forceful than the polite versions. It’s like in the commercial produced in 2015 on the issue of consent and, like in the picture above, the offer for a cup of tea:

Of course, we could accept the offer and say sure, we can do that. Germans would use the word annehmen and the English equivalents are below:

.

For the enquivalent to the German word, ablehnen, the expressions are on the same level as this traffic light:

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

The green light represents the polite way of saying no, the yellow light is the more stern way, and the red light is the most forceful way. The most commonly used words to describe “No!” are decline, reject and refuse. Like the traffic light, the difference among the three verbs is as follows:

As a hint, each of the words also have an equivalent, whose meanings are different, but they are in reference to the actual meaning of the word.

Decline: Two meanings come to mind when it comes to this word. The first has to do with deteriorate, the other to go down. While it is OK to politely decline to the offer a friend gives you, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the friend doesn’t like you. Yet if you reject your friend’s offer multiple times, then you might want to ask why, for it could be a sign that a friendship is deteriorating.

Reject: There are several words that come to mind when it comes to rejecting something sternly. One can repeal, annul or back out of an offer. Yet you can reject an offer and at the same time end a relationship and leave someone behind. As a hint, when you reject something plainly and to the point, it is a sign that you want to end something and move on. Reject is a tool used to end a partnership but on a professional basis.

Refuse: Two words are used to describe the harshest form of a “No” word: refuse and waste. Refuse is British and means garbage in American English as well as Abfall in German. The stress is on the first syllable. Waste is the same as garbage as a noun, but as a verb it means using time in a worthless manner. If you use the word refuse, your implying that the other person is wasting your time and you want nothing to do with him/her. If you use refuse, then the person is being tossed into the pile of garbage, full of disappointments, but in the clearest (and hopefully) verbal manner.

Review:

Decline <=> deteriorate, go down

Reject <=> repeal, annul, back out, end, leave behind

Refuse <=> refuse (noun), garbage, waste (noun/verb)

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

A. Look at the expressions below. Determine whether they represent a red light (severe), yellow light (stern but moderate) or green light (polite). Please keep in mind that both the three words plus their synonyms are featured in the examples.

  1. I refuse to talk to my dad. He’s such a racist!
  2. Patricia declined to comment on the incident.
  3. Sam rejected Torsten’s request for a paid leave of absence
  4. The police officer apprehended the driver after he refused to show him his driver’s license.
  5. The teenager refused to show his tatoo to the leader of the gang and was subsequentially beaten.
  6. Anna declined Ted’s offer for a beer after work.
  7. I refuse to be a victim to this abuse!
  8. The President rejected the proposal to sign the treaty, citing high costs to carry it through.
  9. The clerk rejected the form because there was missing information.
  10. The opposite team declined the offer to penalize the home team for the foul.
  11. The marriage was annulled due to irreconcilable differences. Annul is the same as which of the three words: ______________________
  12. I’ve decided to leave the group because of the contract and I wanted to go solo. Leave is the same as which of the three words: ___________________.
  13. The relationship has deteriorated recently because of cultural differences between the couple. Deteriorate is the same as which of the three words:_______________________
  14. I will not speak with that piece of garbage. Not after what he did. He’s a waste of time. Waste and garbage are in reference to which of the three words: _____________________
  15. I passed up on the offer to work in Auckland for family reasons. Pass up is the same as which of the three words: __________________________.
  16. The bishop shunned the couple for same-sex marriage. Shun is the same as which of the three words: ______________________.
  17. We renounced our citizenship because we didn’t want to pay double taxes. Renounce is the same as which of the three words: ____________________.
  18. Scott sat out during the game because of a nose bleed. Sit out is the same as which of the three words:_____________________.
  19. The plaintiff’s lawyer objected to the defendant’s claims in court. Object is the same as which of the three words: ____________________.
  20. People in the hall protested at the proposal to tear the historic building down. Protest is the same as which of the three words: ________________________.

.

.

B. Complete the following sentences, using either decline, reject or refuse. Pay attention to the details!

  1. Charles _______________ to apologize to his brother for the fight because he had started it.
  2. The cat ________________ to come down from the cupboard. So Sam took a broom and chased him down.
  3. Georgia _________________ Harlow’s offer to dinner at the diner in town. She was not interested in him and he understood.
  4. I _________________ to comment on the story because I’ve only heard it for the first time. Please give me time to digest the news.
  5. The Senate ________________ the proposal calling for the increase in taxes among the wealthy.
  6. The wedding proposal was __________________ because she didn’t love him. She loved someone else.
  7. The protesters _________________ to leave the town square, so the police sprayed water on them.
  8. I _________________ to back down to Mr. Henning because his argument for me clearing my classroom was not justified.
  9. My boss _________________ the offer for a higher position because he loves his job.
  10. She __________________ the draft because it was irrelevant.

.

.

.

C. Look at the following sentences and convert them using the antonyms.

Example: I refuse your apology! <=> I accept your apology!

  1. I decline the offer to marry you. <=>
  2. I refuse to talk to him. <=>
  3. The proposal was rejected by a unanimous vote. <=>
  4. The fine for speeding was rejected. <=>
  5. The peace treaty has been refused by both parties. <=>
Photo by Travel Sourced on Pexels.com

After watching the video and reading (as well as doing) the examples, you should have an idea on the ways to express yourself if someone offers you something in English and you want to accept or deny the offer. Regardless of severity vs politeness, the main factor is: “No means no!” If a person declines, rejects or refuses something, then there is a reason for that. It is only OK with the consent of the other and NOT based on your assumptions. What was learned in your childhood that “No means yes.” is no longer the norm in this day and age.

When it’s no, it means no. Regardless of how no is interpreted.

.

Photo Flick Nr. 34

This Photo Flick takes us to Flensburg and to the Museumsberg. We were at the museum complex a couple weeks ago, where one of the main exhibits that took place was the topic of Borders- in connection with the German-Danish border of 1920. And while the 100th anniversary series will appear in the Files later on this fall, I couldn’t help but look at the children’s art exhibits that dealt with borders- not just between Germany and Denmark, but also borders based on race, ethnicity, religion, social and economic backgrounds and even personalities. Borders don’t have to include the destruction of crossings and the like, as what happened to Germany at the end of World War II and during the Cold War period that followed and divided Germany up for 45 years, as we saw in the article on the Dömitz Railroad Bridge over the Elbe. Yet borders have include two classes of people and how they should be treated accordingly.

This painting, found at Museumsberg shows the problem of borders when one minority is degraded to second or third class in favor of the superior white race. It shows the mistreatment of a black person as he is violently submitted by police. This was done in connection with the current protests in the US, where Black Lives Matter has been at the absolute forefront, especially in light of the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25th. While racism has been systemic and systematic in the United States since the end of Civil War in 1865, it is only now that everything is at the forefront and the quest for equality has not been stressed as much as it is right now. The question is whether the US government will act to restore equality. That will have to wait until November 3rd, yet even if that happens, we may have another Civil War on our hands, given the sharp divisions the US has, going beyond the political and racial aspects.

This painting was one of many that were done by elementary school students of German and Danish backgrounds in Flensburg and neighboring Harrislee, as the schools came together to exhibit their paintings, most of which dealt with current events affecting Germany, Europe, the USA and the rest of the world. They included issues, such as racism, democracy, Trump and of course, the topic of borders- all done in German, English and Danish. They were an eye-opener to the tourists, especially those, like yours truly, who have worked with this topic in the classroom and in this column. It’s good that children get exposed to current events so they can understand the world and interpret the situation from their perspectives. By watching the news every day, listening to stories from their parents and other elders and even talking about critical topics, children will get an insight into the problems affecting us and can tackle them- developing them to their liking and to benefit others.

ACTIVITY: IN MY WORLD,……

One of the activities that should be taught in the classroom is to have children and students create a painting/drawing and/or write a story about how the world should look like from their perspectives. Starting with the sentence “In my world,…..” allow your children/students to create a world to their liking, to be presented in front of class. They should explain how the world should be created, what is allowed or banned and how people should treat their world.

An example of how a world should be created can be something like this:

In my world, we would have a green environment. All buildings must be operated with renewable energy (solar, wind, etc.) and have greens on roofs. There would be only e-cars and lots of forests and lakes. Only people who are environmentally conscious would live there, etc.

This can be used in not only Ethics and Social Studies, but also in foreign language class or any classes where civics is taught. By allowing the student to be created, you will be amazed to see what a world should look like from the eyes of the one who presents it and it would create an interesting conversation in the classroom and eventually at the dinner table if the child presents his/her own world. Who knows, if your school has a wide array of topics in conjunction with this, you could have a display like the one in Flensburg.

But even if not, similar activities like the activity or in this Photo Flick will enhance the child’s creativity and expose them to the environment and society that will get them to think, using the following important question: “What can I do better to help myself and others around me?

By answering that question and finding solutions that help, we will be on our way to making things happen, while at the same time, eliminate the barriers that keep us from achieving these goals.

This is something that I hope to see happen with our problems of racism and borders between two people of different backgrounds. We have seen this go on for almost two centuries and given the multitude of problems we have, this is one where we must work to eliminate as they will need us as much as we need them and their knowledge for support.

On the Road: A Look at Verbs of Transport Part 2- Explaining the Differences

country countryside daylight field
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Now that you had a chance to try out the Photographic Guessing Quiz, here are some of the explanations that justify the difference among the verbs that are what they are regarding traveling. I left the most obvious out, which is anything to do with feet- walking, running, jogging. However, the following words may be difficult to distinguish, therefore we must explain it further with some audio and visual :

 

Ride:

 

As you see in the video above, ride is solely used for the purpose of being on top of something that moves. Whenever you are straddling an object, like a bike, motorcycle, jetski, broom or in this case golf club, and are going somewhere, ride is definitely used here.

Another way of looking at the meaning of ride is this song by Queen entitled Bike Race:

To sum up, if you are here,

person riding bicycle
Photo by SAurabh Narwade on Pexels.com

 

You are riding her. 😉   However, you can also ride this……

ride a train

…if you are the passenger of a car, amusement park ride (like roller coaster, Ferris Wheel, Merry-Go-Round, etc.) or this train.

But when you have this,

black lamborghini vehicle steering wheel
Photo by Charles Kettor on Pexels.com

then you can (and must) use the word drive.

Drive:

Basically drive is used when you have a steering wheel and a dashboard with all the controls needed to tell the car, truck or anything with at least four wheels what to do. Just like in this film clip below:

And while some cars can jump cliffs and other obstacles like KITT, in all reality, they cannot fly!

jet cloud landing aircraft
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Fly:

Anything with wings and a cockpit, but have engines with a potential of going into “warp speed” into the skies and beyond require the use of the word fly.

This also applies for hot-air balloons or anything that requires the use of hot air, fuel and fire that lifts anything in the air. Even space ships in its science fiction form can fly as well. Yet while in space, the ship’s captain needs to navigate and steer the ship, just like this:

close up photogrpahy ship captains control
Photo by Nick Demou on Pexels.com

Steer/ Navigate:

Sometimes when you operate small motorboat and you are not straddling anything, we would drive a boat for riding a boat applies when you are a passenger and not the boat Operator. However, for larger ships, such as freighters, ferries and cruise ships, we would use the words steer and navigate, normally. Navigate is the process of finding your way through all sorts of obstacles just to get to your destination.  One can get away with using it for airplanes in this case, or when using the Navi (GPS device) in your car.

Steering means using a nautical wheel, like in this picture above. Similar to this word is helm, but captains don’t do the real steering- helmsmen do the job. The captain is just the skipper.

white ship during golden hour
Photo by GEORGE DESIPRIS on Pexels.com

Yet when we have oars or paddles, we would normally not use steer or navigate…….

paddle - Kopie

Paddle vs Row:

There is a difference between the words Paddle and Row. Both are in reference to all smaller forms of boating. To paddle implies using only boat paddle and paddling the water alternately, similar to the photo of the stand paddler above. If you are going by kayak, canoe, raftboat, gondola, (stand-up) paddleboat or anything that requires only one paddle, you would use the verb paddle. It can also be used in reference to the paddle boat itself, where the front paddle is operated by peddling.

person wearing blue denim jacket riding red canoe boat
Photo by Andy Vu on Pexels.com

However, if you use a pair of oars, we would use the verb row, like rowing the boat. This applies for rowboat and larger ships, like Viking ships, where paddles are used on both sides of the boat and they push the boat floating on water forward, simultaneously.

grayscale picture of two people go on fishing
Photo by Jayant Kulkarni on Pexels.com

Yet should there any sails on the boat, and you decide to use them, then ist neither row nor paddle.

Sail:

Sail is pretty obvious. When your boat has sails and the wind allows to to blow away, then you would use the word sail. It applies for all boats, yachts and ships that have this contraption……

And now that you have an idea of how to distinguish among the verbs of  Transport, enjoy this closure, imagining you are on a sailboat, relaxing and traveling to unknown places, listening to Christopher Cross and Chris Rea, while practicing some English words dealing with travel. Another part is coming soon. 🙂

 

FF new logo

 

On the Road: A Look at Verbs of Transport Part 1

woman wearing black tube dress painting
Photo by AG Z on Pexels.com

This English language series looks at the use of verbs in connection with the topic Transportation. Some are asking why this is important. Simple as 1,2 & 3.

Non-natives have a difficulty making a difference among the words, such as ride, drive, and fly in the sense of actually operating a vehicle. In addition, there is the issue of making the distinction among the phrasal verbs with get in the sense of boarding and disembarking and lastly the phrasal verb using either go by or go on.

Before we get to the explanation and assuming we know the means of transportation in English, we have a challenging but enjoyable exercise for you to try.  Using the verbs given in the respective boxes- Verbs of Transportation and Verbs of Boarding, look at the gallery of pictures  and determine which verb(s) from each set best fits. An example sentence may be needed. You will need to provide a reason behind each answer.

Enjoy! 🙂

 

Verbs of Transportation

ride and bike

Verbs of Boarding

get into out

Transportation Photo Gallery:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

This gallery quiz exercise can be used in the classroom and you can manually stop the slides to allow time for students to answer the questions and form sentences as examples.

Explanations are found in Part 2 by clicking here, which include some videos and more pics.

 

FF new logo

 

 

Less is More- Answer Sheet

questions answers signage
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Now that you had a chance to learn about the use of More and Most in English, let alone do the exercises (which you can access here), here are the answers to the two exercises.

More or Not:

Look at the following adjectives and determine whether the use of more and most apply or not. Mark with Y for yes or N for no.

  1. Impressive   Yes
  2. Greedy   No
  3. Angry   No
  4. Impulsive   Yes
  5. Insistent   Yes
  6. Sad   No
  7. Happy   No
  8. Excited   Yes
  9. Pale   No
  10. Busy   No
  11. Stressed   Yes
  12. Authoritative   Yes
  13. Tough   No
  14. Fair   No
  15. Beautiful   Yes
  16. Ugly   No
  17. Picky   No
  18. Disgusted   Yes
  19. Furious   Yes
  20. Peaceful   Yes

 

Multiple Choice:

Choose the correct word in each sentence.

  1. Colin could have ______________ told us about the accident last night instead of running off.
  • Least
  • Less
  • At least
  • Little

 

 

2. Frank smiles ________________. He always makes a serious look when we take pictures.

  • The least
  • The most
  • Less
  • More

 

 

3. Dorothea is ___________________ of the students in her class. Her IQ matches that of Einstein’s.

  • The least intelligent
  • The less intelligent
  • Intelligentest
  • The most intelligent

 

 

4. We have a choice between selling our business and taking out a loan. We need to ___________________________.

  • Make the best of the situation
  • Choose the lesser of the two evils
  • Choose the option with least resistence
  • Do nothing.

 

 

5. And _________________________, before we open the festivities, we need to bring the wedding cake to the Restaurant.

  • Least of all
  • Last but not least
  • More of all
  • More or less.

 

 

6. _________________________! We should have left some meat out of our presentation!

  • Less is more!
  • More is everything!
  • Last but not least!
  • Above all!

 

 

7.  Clarinda is the __________________ of the women on the wrestling team. She may be 17 years old but she has a height of 5 feet even.

  • Smallest
  • Most tiny
  • Littlest
  • Least tiny

 

 

8. Instead of playing with your Smartphone, you could have ______________ paid attention and not crashed into that tree!

  • At least
  • At the latest
  • The least
  • Less

 

 

9. You are not going anywhere _____________ you clean that room of yours! It’s a real mess!

  • Less
  • Least
  • Unless
  • The least

 

 

10.  _________________ Bill could have done was inform the landlord of the water damage in the bathroom.

  • The least
  • At least
  • Lest
  • Both a & b

 

 

11. There are ______________ on the streets today than normal. We would have 400 or more visitors at any given day and not 20.

  • Few
  • Fewer
  • Fewest
  • Least

 

 

12. There is ____________ milk in the gallon jug. Who took a drink?

  • Fewer
  • Less
  • Smaller
  • Least

 

 

13. The sandwiches at the snack shop are _____________ then normal. Are they cutting back on the fixings or what?

  • Smaller
  • Less
  • Fewer
  • More

 

 

14. There are __________ bikes than usual because of the expanded bike trail network.

  • More
  • Most
  • Less
  • Least

 

 

15. The number two is _______________ four in this equation.

  • Greater
  • Less than
  • The least
  • More than

 

dolphins jumping out from ocean
Photo by Jonas Von Werne on Pexels.com

 

FlFi10

 

 

Less is More- Activities

collage photo of woman
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

 

After having looked at the different forms of more and most as well as their opposites (click here to view them), we have a couple exercises for you to do so that you have an opportunity to use them. When you are finished with them, click onto this link here to get to the answer sheet.

More or Not:

Look at the following adjectives and determine whether the use of more and most apply or not. Mark with Y for yes or N for no.

  1. Impressive
  2. Greedy
  3. Angry
  4. Impulsive
  5. Insistent
  6. Sad
  7. Happy
  8. Excited
  9. Pale
  10. Busy
  11. Stressed
  12. Authoritative
  13. Tough
  14. Fair
  15. Beautiful
  16. Ugly
  17. Picky
  18. Disgusted
  19. Furious
  20. Peaceful

 

Multiple Choice:

Choose the correct word in each sentence.

  1. Colin could have ______________ told us about the accident last night instead of running off.
  • Least
  • Less
  • At least
  • Little

 

2. Frank smiles ________________. He always makes a serious look when we take pictures.

  • The least
  • The most
  • Less
  • More

 

3. Dorothea is ___________________ of the students in her class. Her IQ matches that of Einstein’s.

  • The least intelligent
  • The less intelligent
  • Intelligentest
  • The most intelligent

 

4. We have a choice between selling our business and taking out a loan. We need to ___________________________

  • Make the best of the situation
  • Choose the lesser of the two evils
  • Choose the option with least resistence
  • Do nothing.

 

5. And _________________________, before we open the festivities, we need to bring the wedding cake to the restaurant.

  • Least of all
  • Last but not least
  • More of all
  • More or less.

 

6. _________________________! We should have left some meat out of our presentation!

  • Less is more!
  • More is everything!
  • Last but not least!
  • Above all!

 

7. Clarinda is the __________________ of the women on the wrestling team. She may be 17 years old but she has a height of 5 feet even.

  • Smallest
  • Most tiny
  • Littlest
  • Least tiny

 

8. Instead of playing with your Smartphone, you could have ______________ paid attention and not crashed into that tree!

  • At least
  • At the latest
  • The least
  • Less

 

9. You are not going anywhere _____________ you clean that room of yours! It’s a real mess!

  • Less
  • Least
  • Unless
  • The least

 

10. _________________ Bill could have done was inform the landlord of the water damage in the bathroom.

  • The least
  • At least
  • Lest
  • Both a & b

 

11. There are ______________ on the streets today than normal. We would have 400 or more visitors at any given day and not 20.

  • Few
  • Fewer
  • Fewest
  • Least

 

12. There is ____________ milk in the gallon jug. Who took a drink?

  • Fewer
  • Less
  • Smaller
  • Least

 

13. The sandwiches at the snack shop are _____________ then normal. Are they cutting back on the fixings or what?

  • Smaller
  • Less
  • Fewer
  • More

 

14. There are __________ bikes than usual because of the expanded bike trail network.

  • More
  • Most
  • Less
  • Least

 

15. The number two is _______________ four in this equation.

  • Greater
  • Less than
  • The least
  • More than

 

FlFi10

Less is More. But is Most the Least?

two people riding on jet ski
Photo by Asad Photo Maldives on Pexels.com

Most of us probably know the functions of comparative and superlative adjectives in English. Especially with the use of more and most as they generally support adjectives with three or more syllables plus other adjectives with endings of -ed (passive), -ful, -ive and a few other exceptions.

But there are some who don’t know about how more and most function outside the primary role of comparing two or more entities. Therefore, we will look at the different functions of the two.

 

More:

More is used to compare two entities and determine which one is better than the other. However, as we see in the table, More has other functions as well. For instance……

Use of More

 

Most:

Most is used as the superlative form of the adjective, finding out which object or person is the greatest of three or more subjects. However, most has other functions as well, as we see in the table below:

Most as function

 

Few/Small vs Less

When looking at the opposites, we have two different words to look at. For most cases where we look at objects from a quantitative purposes, we would use few and small. They also include the comparative form, each of which require the use of „-er“

Small and few

Little:

While few is very obvious because we’re talking about the numbers, many people have problems making the difference between small and little. Small is used either as an adjective or an adverb and describes the size and amount of something. Little has both grammatical functions, plus it can be used as a pronoun and determiner, yet little has two key differences:

  1. Little can be used to express some emotion or sometimes an idea of smallness
  2. Little is always used to describe something that is intangible, having no number, figure or amount.

Some examples to support the argument:

  1. There’s a beautiful little cottage next to the lake.
  2. Happy Birthday to our funny little man, known as my brother.
  3. We’ll have to use what little we have in our savings account to buy food.
  4. There’s very little water in that Reservoir.

 

Less

When we use less, we can see that there are multiple meanings and functions that should be taken account. While less means something to a smaller extent per se, its differences can be broken down into the following:

less

 

Least

In the sense of superlative, we have the same words but different meanings and functions. For small and few, the meaning is basically the same, which is looking at the small amount or size of an object, people, or other things. The endings is with –est.

 

Examples:

We have the smallest/ fewest number of salmonella cases than our neighboring community.

The town has the fewest people visiting the market square this week.

I was given the smallest meal I’ve ever seen: A plate with a mini-sandwich and only three potato wedges!

Becky was the smallest person on the basketball team (Note: You can also use shortest).

 

When looking at the superlative for little, namely least, here we have a different set of functions and meanings to pay attention to.

Least

In German, all of these in the box above have one meaning: wenigstens. 😉

Now that we know how the comparative and superlative words work in the sense of grammar and context, we’re going to look at the activities which you can click here to access.

 

Flensburg Sunset

cropped-FF-new-logo1.jpg

American Football: History, Facts and Anything Passive about it.

Photo by Torsten Bolten [CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)%5D
American Football: a national past time. Every year in the Fall, we would flock to the football stadiums and watch the two teams, each consisting of 11 men, dressed up in football uniforms and helmets, move the ball to each other’s end zone to score. There are spectacular catches by the wide receivers; just as many deep throws by the quarterbacks or pushing the linemen back by the running backs; just as many as clean tackles by the defensive linemen; but also just as many boos and cussing by penalties that are debateable, just to name a few. 2019 marked the 150th anniversary of the first game of the sport of football. As it developed over the years, rules and regulations were refined and equipment was reshaped to make the game safer for everyone to play. The most popular foot league in the world is the National Football League, which celebrates its 100th year in the 2019/20 football season. The most popular game in the US celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2017- the Super Bowl.

Despite all these facts, what do we know about the sport? This is where the Files has a cool activity series  for you to try out. Consisting of a guessing quiz and some exercises in connection with English grammar, this guide will give you a chance to test your history of the sport. At the same time, it will also test your skills involving active and passive verb forms in English.

To better understand how they work, a table below shows you how they function:

Passive voice Table

A more detailed version can be found with some activities involving the history of street lamps, which you can click  here.

So without further ado, have a seat and try these exercises out. Good luck! 🙂

EXERCISE 1: Use the verbs in parenthesis and complete the sentence in the lined blank. In the dotted blank, choose the correct answer in the multiple choice below.

quizquiz1

EXERCISE 2: Look at the following sentences below and determine whether they are active or passive. Mark with an A or a P, respectively. The verbs have been marked in bold print.

  1. In today’s game of football, only 11 players per team are allowed on the football field.
  2. The team that has the ball is given four chances (downs) to gain 10 yards.
  3. The offense (team that has the ball) gets another set of downs if they get 10 or more yards.
  4. The defense tries to stop the offense from getting the downs.
  5. If the offense fails to get 10 yards or more, they are forced to turn the ball over to the opponents. !: Two answers here.
  6. If the offense gets the ball into the end zone of the opponent, it’s a touchdown and they are awarded six points.
  7. Points can also be scored by a field goal (3 points), two-point conversion or an extra point kick after the touchdown, or when the defense stops the offense in their own end zone for a safety (2 points) !: Two answers here.
  8. The team with the most points after four quarters wins the game.

 

EXERCISE 3: HYBRID This task has a combination multiple choice and verb formation. Complete the sentence by: A. choosing the correct word from the multiple choice and B. Formulating the sentence using passive or active. !: Please pay attention to the verb tense that is expected per task.

quiz2

EXERCISE 4: GUESSING QUIZ

 

How many states did the original teams represent when the NFL was created in 1920?  a. Four               b. Six              c. Eight

 

 

Which of the cities were NOT the founding fathers of the NFL?

a. Canton, OH        b. Chicago              c. Green Bay            d. Cleveland     e. Pittsburgh

 

Which NFL Team in the present-day is the oldest?

a. Arizona Cardinals      b. Green Bay Packers       

c. Cleveland Browns    d. Chicago Bears               

e. New York Giants             f. Detroit Lions

 

Prior to the first Super Bowl, which NFL team won the most number of championships?  

a. Cleveland Browns        b. Green Bay Packers       

c. New York Giants          d. Chicago Bears             

e. Minnesota Vikings       f. Detroit Lions

 

Between 1920 and 1969, which NFL team did NOT relocate or fold? 

a. Akron Bulldogs             b. Buffalo All-Stars        

c. Green Bay Packers       d. Pittsburgh Steelers      

e. Chicago Bears                f. Cleveland Browns

 

What was the highest number of points scored ever in an NFL championship prior to the first Super Bowl?

 

And since the Super Bowl started?

 

Which NFL Team(s) has made the Super Bowl the most number of times? 

Which NFL Team(s) has won the most number of Super Bowl Championships? 

 

Which NFL Team(s) has attended the Super Bowl the most but has yet to win one?

 

The answer sheet can be found here. Have fun! 🙂

 

Fl Fi USA

The Search for International Idioms

Flags

frage für das forum  GUESSING QUIZ

Idioms are creative words and phrases that have a their own fixed meaning in the context. They can range from Idioms used for (example) Food, Work, Numbers, Church and in some cases, names (an article on Idioms connected with names can be found here)

This set of Idioms was found through a Forum that features English teachers and those wanting to learn English. One of the members found the top ten Idioms used from their native countries but known throughout the world.

As a challenge, here’s a matching exercise where you should match the Idioms with the meanings on the right. Which ones do you know?  Guess first and then check the answers at the bottom of the article. Good luck! 🙂

 

Idiom (Country) Meaning
1.       You can’t pluck feathers off a bald chicken (The Netherlands) a. To beat around the bush
2.       To ride an elephant to catch a grasshopper (Thailand) b. To brag or talk something up to be bigger than it actually is.
3.       A dog in the church (Italy) c. To fool a person/people
4.       “Stop ironing my head!” (Turkey) d. To go away/ get lost
5.       Walk around in hot porridge (Czechia) e. To have better things to do
6.       Emit smoke from seven orifices (China) f. “Knock it off! Stop annoying me!”
7.       Have other cats to whip (France) g. Unwanted guest(s)
8.       To inflate a cow (China) h. Things that are impossible cannot happen
9.       To hang noodles on someone’s ears (Russia) i. Put in a lot of work to get little in return
10.   Get stuffed with hay (Polish) j. To be extremely angry/ furious

OMT: What other international Idioms (translated into English) do you know? Add your examples in the comment section below AND include the origin of the Idiom. An example is presented below:

Going to two weddings at the same time (Germany; specifically, Saxony)-   

To be at two places at once.

 

Looking forward to adding onto the list what you present. 🙂

 

FlFi10

 

 

 

Answers: 1. h, 2. i, 3. g, 4. f, 5. a, 6. j, 7. e, 8. b, 9. c, 10. d