12-useful-internet-acronyms

12 Useful Internet Acronyms

February 21, 2013

Acronyms on the internet have existed for nearly as long as the internet itself. For regularly repeated phrases, this is a handy way to type less and speed up conversation. For someone in a chat room for the first time, conversation can look like scrolling alphabet soup, and for a parent, cell phone text from […]

common-rules-capital-letter-usage

Common Rules for Capital Letter Usage

February 1, 2013

Rules for capitalization vary by country, language and word usage. Simple rules for capitalizing proper nouns and writing the pronoun “I” in capital letters are helpful, but they don’t provide clear answers for every situation. Here are a few tips that are useful for determining when all capital letters should be used or when the […]

modal-verbs

Modal Verbs

December 15, 2012

Even if a reader has no idea what a modal verb is, this statement is more likely to agitate than inform, and it would start any other article on a sour note. Lurking at the beginning of the sentence, the modal verb “should” is responsible for this agitation. Source

Article: How Definite is Indefinite?

Article: How Definite is Indefinite?

November 28, 2012

Indefinite and definite articles, such as “a”, “an” and “the”, describe and modify nouns. Articles and niggling little words known as determiners and quantifiers convey general and specific information. Articles tell the reader what you’re talking about and how much there is. Adults and advanced ESL students can run into many challenging situations where abstract […]

Subjunctive: I Wish I Were

Subjunctive: I Wish I Were

November 21, 2012

“I wish I were” and “I wish I was”: which of these is proper in English? Both are proper, they are not interchangeable, and each has a purpose. Luckily, the differences are simple. Source

Parallel Structure

Parallel Structure

October 16, 2012

Parallel structure is an important element of proper writing. Words, phrases and clauses should all be parallel when linked together in a series or connected with coordinating conjunctions. Combinations and patterns of words should all agree with the subject. However, many native speakers and ESL learners are left wondering what parallel structure is, and how […]

Musical Idioms

Musical Idioms

September 5, 2012

English and music evolve constantly and have a tendency to affect each other. A surprising number of idioms have come from music. Source

10 Funniest Online Terms

10 Funniest Online Terms

August 31, 2012

Technology has claimed its own corner of English, and it’s not without humor. Here are 10 of the funniest words and terms from the “interwebz”. Source

12 Idioms About Money

12 Idioms About Money

July 22, 2012

In English, an idiom is a broadly-used phrase with a meaning that may differ quite radically from the actual literal wording. The phrase “time flies” expresses the quickness of time rather than suggesting that it buzzes around your head like a bee. Like music and literature, money has an effect on the changing nature of […]

12 Love Idioms

12 Love Idioms

June 18, 2012

As Saint Valentine’s Day draws near, love idioms and phrases are increasingly popular. While some universal idioms are easily translated, many idioms on love can be difficult to comprehend. Here are 12 popular love idioms and phrases that are used frequently but are quite confounding. Source

15 Most Unbelievable Words

15 Most Unbelievable Words

June 8, 2012

There are many unbelievable words in the English language–some so strange that they are rarely used. There are words for things most of us did not even know we need a word for. “There’s a word for that?” Some may deepen our vocabulary, but sometimes it is just entertaining to pick through the dictionary for […]

Speak! Words & Phrases my dog understands

Speak! Words & Phrases my dog understands

May 31, 2012

Words & Phrases my dog knows, including average words a dog knows and the world record for smartest dog. Source