job interview

Learn how to Ace an English Job Interview with an Expert

In this English Show we talk about how to succeed in an job interview and we’re joined by Shanthi Cumaraswamy Streat of the fabulous English with a Twist blog.

Hey. Come on everybody. It’s going to start.
Well, that’s true. Who did that?

Hello everybody. Welcome to The English Show. Welcome. I’m Vicki and I’m an English teacher. And with me is my good friend, Fluency MC. Hey, hey, hey. I’m Fluency. I’m also an English teacher and I’m a trainer and knowledge entertainer and welcome to another edition of The English Show. And the other person we want you to meet is the guy who’s making it all happen. Jay, are you there? Jay!
Hi everybody. I’m right here in the control room. I’m running the show. And I’m sure you’re going to enjoy all the things we have for you today.
Go Jay! Another person you’re going to meet later is Shanthi from English with a Twist. Our special guest! Yeah, and we’re going to learn about job interviews today, and how to ace an English job interview. What does it mean to “ace” an interview, Vicki? It means to be really successful at the interview so you get the job. Right. But first of all, I’d like to come to Paris. Oh, would you? Do you think Jay can bring you once again? Jay, do you think you can help me get to Paris today? Come visit me.

How am I getting to Paris this week Jay?
This week you’re going to swim there.
Oooh, that’s a long way to swim.
Yes, you’re going to need some help. Grab his tail.
Wow, I’m here. That was exciting.

Look, I made it, I’m here. Oh, Whoa. There she is again, everybody. Back in Paris. High five. High five. Vicki Hollett in Paris! Yeah. Wow, so is that the first time you’ve traveled by water? I think that’s the first time I’ve ever swum here. Yeah. I had to be… I had to be very energetic to get here. Was that a porpoise or a dolphin or…? I think it was a dolphin. Ah must be. And actually, we’re here with somebody very energetic who’s based in the UK. Shanti, are you there? Yes I am. I’m here. Hi everyone. Welcome to the English Show. It’s great to have you. Oh, it’s lovely to be here. Because we all want to know how we can ace a job interview. And we know that you’re going to be able to help us. Oh yes. That I can, indeed. Of course, one of the things you have to do is make a good first impression. Have you got any good tips for that?
When you arrive, have a nice smile, a firm handshake and be smart – well dressed, good haircut – nothing to strange, depending on the job you’re applying for. Ok, so smile, that’s an important one, isn’t it? Yes. And make sure you look smart. Yes, and also good eye contact. You know, look the person in the eye with a nice smile and a firm handshake please. None of the limp handshakes. That is terrible. I don’t know about you, but I just hate those. That’s true, isn’t it. A firm handshake suggests confidence. Indeed, yes, and it shows confidence and it shows that, you know, that you’re serious. OK. So, imagine that I’m at a job interview, and the interviewer asks me a question like “Can you tell me about yourself?” OK. It’s a very general question. What does it mean? You really do have to think hard. Because what they want you to do is briefly summarize who you are and what you’re experience is. And that’s basically what most interviewers are asking. Uh huh. There are some other tricky questions they might have too, like “What’s your proudest achievement?” You know, I always say to my clients you have to really think hard, because what the interviewer is asking you really is how you solved a problem. They want to see your problem solving skills and how you achieved that, not just the results. So, how you solved a a problem. But they’ll be interested in the results as well, perhaps. Oh yes. So what you’re doing is, you start off with what was the situation, then what you did to deal with that problem and then what were the results at the end. And, when you’re giving results, be specific. Give numbers. Quantify your achievement. Don’t just say ‘sales increased, you know we had a good sales outcome.’ They want to know by how many percent, by how much. What did you do? So, always give numbers. Be specific. Oh, so that’s another good tip for us. So, another tricky one… in fact, I can remember being asked this at a job interview… ‘What’s your greatest strength?’ That was all right. But then they said, “What’s your greatest weakness?” Yes. Always difficult, isnt’ it, because you don’t want to say too much about your weaknesses. But the key here really, is turning that weakness into a strength. One of the things about weakness is it’s demonstrating your self awareness. So, pinpoint an area. So for example, if you are someone who puts a lot of attention to detail, so you could be detail orientated. But, it could also be that you’re too concerned about details. So that particular job required you to complete it in a certain amount of time and you are focused on too much detail. That is a weakness. So then, what you want to do, is to show how you’ve overcome that weakness. You’re aware of it, so this is what you try and do. Maybe you set yourself some time lines. So that’s what they’re trying to look at also and how you’ve overcome that weakness. That’s interesting. So it’s not just a question of trying to find a weakness that isn’t really a weakness… you need to be honest. Yes. But you also need to tell them how you’ve overcome it and got round it. Have you got any weaknesses, Fluency? I sure do. Shanthi, it’s really interesting what you’re saying about different types of questions interviewers might ask that all connect to the idea of how you solve a problem. Because when you’re also… when you’re talking about a weakness that they might want to know about, you said ‘something you’re trying to overcome.’ So, it seems like problem solving skills – both at the job and also with yourself, your personality – kind of connect in a way. Yeah, I mean it is very much that, because what you’re looking at is also self awareness, self knowledge of your strengths and weaknesses. Because we’re all going to have that. One of the key things I always say when you’re applying for a job – look at the key skills they’re looking at in your job specification. And you’ve got to really think hard about what are the skills that you have where you are strong at and perhaps where you’re going to be a bit weaker. But then you’ve got to find a way to turn that round into a strength. That’s another good tip isn’t it? Very good, yeah. To make sure you study those job specifications so you can match what you’re saying to what they’re looking for. Yeah. People will see through waffe. And they will see see through – if you’re not being honest. Because what happens when we’re not being honest, we start waffling, we start talking too much, we start rambling, and we’re not focused. And an interviewer can see right through that. One of the other things I always say to my clients, particularly where they’re having an interview in English which is not their native language – is to not be afraid of pausing for a while. You know, we all get very nervous, we get get worried. And all of us do that. And then the tendency is to rush into the answer… with the answer. And what I always says is “…just give yourself a few seconds and you know pause and then answer the question.” It doesn’t show that, you know, you don’t have the answer but it just shows that you’re in control, um, of what you’re about to say. That’s another good tip, isn’t it? Yeah. I mean I… Don’t rush in. Yeah – you rushed in, Fluency. Ha ha ha ha. I was so excited that Shanthi started talking about when you’re not a native speaker since before that we hadn’t really talked about that. I mean that advice that we’re giving here – Shanthi’s giving is great for everybody – but it’s… when I work with students who are learning English, and you just prepare for job interivews, it’s even more important to be more prepared for the types of questions that will be asked, and also, as Shanthi said, to uh… it’s OK to pause and I want to ask, and I think you’ll agree Shanthi, it’s OK to ask to clarify the question and to be prepared with ways to ask “…do you mean that this” … or because that’s also a way to show that you’re solving a problem, trying to do something the right way as opposed to just pretending you understood. Yeah. That’s really important, isn’t it, to make sure you’ve understood the question. You don’t want to answer the wrong one. Absolutely, because actually it takes a lot of confidence say I didn’t quite get that – what you’re asking me is this… or maybe repeat that question so that it is down to the interviewer to confirm what they’ve just asked. Because sometimes they’re not that clear. Don’t put yourself at a lower level just because you are not a proficient speaker of English and assume that they they’re always right or they’re always clear. If you haven’t understood don’t make it “…I’m so sorry, I haven’t understood.” No. Turn it over to them to repeat their questions.

You know I often have that problem with you Jay.
With me?
Yeah, I ask one question and then you answer another.
I never do that!

I think that is selective hearing. You know, speaking of questions, I think it’s time for question Time. Question time everybody!
OK, we had a question from Nandish. Ah. And she asked about the difference between two words: achieve and accomplish. Ah I can see why. Well, they’re very similar, aren’t they?. Yeah, yeah. And I had to think about it and go check my answers. But what it’s about is ‘achieve’ is what we say when we’re thinking about the end result of something. So it’s very results oriented. ‘He achieved greatness and was awarded a Nobel Prize.’ But accomplish refers to the process of doing something – getting something done. So you’ve got achieve which is about the end result and you’ve got accomplish which is about the process. Right. So another example could be you can accomplish a lot without actually achieving your goal. Hmmm. Interesting. Yeah. Yeah. And of course in a job interview, they’re going to ask you about both, aren’t they? Yeah, what are your accomplishments? What have you achieved, yes. And it’s useful to know the difference. So you’re working a job and you have a sales target for the year. So that is your goal. That is your objective. You have to achieve that sales target. So in between that you have to do things. So you have to accomplish different tasks and jobs to get to that sales target. But sometimes you can do a lot of things so you can have accomplished them, but you don’t necessarily achieve that target. Excellent, yes, good example. Yeah. I’m ready for a conversation. What do you think? Is it time for ‘Conversation Time’?
I’m going to show you a business conversation today and I’m only going to show you the first half at first, and your task is to listen and to work out ‘What’s the conversation about?’, what are they discussing, and ‘What’s going to happen?’ So what it’s about – the topic – and then what’s going to happen next because you’re going to stop it. Is that right? That’s right. Are you ready? Ready.

We have big plans for you, Graham.
We’re going to give you a promotion.
You’re going to be our sales manager for all of Asia.

OK, so ‘We have big… What was the missing word? Plans. We have big plans for you Graham. We’re going to give you a… And the missing word was promotion. So a promotion is when you move up a level in your job. You’re going to be our… sales manager for all of Asia.
So did you get that Fluency? I did. It was really short, but I caught it. OK. What do you think is going to happen next? Hmmm. My guess is that Graham is going to jump for joy because he’s been wanting this promotion forever. Do you think that too, Shanthi? Erm, yes. It could be he does, or, I don’t know, he wasn’t looking terribly excited. So maybe he’s thinking Oooo. Maybe he wants to ask a few more questions. I don’t know. OK. Let me tell you. Shanthi. Yes, you’re right. What! Yes! Yes! And Fluency. Oh my god. Does Shanthi get special treatment? Is that…. Absolutely! Absolutely! Shall we look at it everybody?

We have big plans for you, Graham.
We’re going to give you a promotion.
You’re going to be our sales manager for all of Asia.
Gee, I’m sorry guys but I quit.
You’re resigning?
Yeah, I got a better job.But we had everything planned.
Wow! That came out of left field.

OK guys. So Shanthi, you were right. And in fact what he did was he quit. Quit is a very informal way of saying resign. In fact we’ve got resign coming up. ‘You’re resigning?’ ‘Yeah’, he said. ‘I’ve got a better job’. And then there’s a little idiom at the end. I don’t know if you caught it. ‘But we had everything planned.’ ‘Wow! That came out of left field’. Now that’s a baseball idiom. Fluency, you know much more about baseball than I do. What does ‘out of left field’ mean?
Well there are a few expressions with ‘left field’ in English because our image of left field in the baseball field, it’s like, really far away, over there. It’s the furthest point from where most of the action usually is. So it’s sort of that idea of out of nowhere. OK, so it’s sort of a surprise. Mmm. You don’t expect it because that’s not where the action usually is, so it’s unexpected. So there’s a little idiom for you. Out of left field means something that’s surprising – perhaps a bit of a shock. Mmm. It’s usually a bad surprise, isn’t it? So a shock. I’m curious. Is that idiom iused in British English? Even though you don’t have baseball. I know some baseball idioms are and some aren’t. No. No. We have some cricket idioms that are similar to baseball idioms. So another similar one would be, we can talk about a curve… a curved ball in British English. And that would be something that’s surprising. When somebody throws a ball and it moves in a way you don’t expect. And in American English I think you say ‘curve ball’. Yeah, but I thought some baseball idioms were also … just had gone into British even though there’s no baseball, but maybe I’m wrong. You’re right. There are a few. We do have a few. In fact we’ve made a whole series of baseball idiom videos. I was just thinking about that. Yeah, great videos so check them out. ‘Simple English Videos – Baseball Idioms’. That’s right. So Shanthi. Have you ever turned down a job offer?
When I was in finance, in the years before, erm… no, not that many. No, actually I don’t think I turned down job offers. But ever since becoming a Business English teacher, yes. Where people have offered me certain projects or jobs, then yes, I have turned them down. I’ve become more, more brave as I’ve got older – than when I was younger. I think sometimes people can forget this at a job interview. That it’s not just an opportunity for them to get to know you. But it’s also an opportunity for you, so that you can decide whether you really want the job. Yep, absolutely, and I think that’s really important and very much something that very few people do. Especially at the end, you know, when an interviewer asks, you know, do you have any questions for us, show that you are interested. You have actually done some research on the particular company. Oh good point. Mmm. The world of business can change very quickly so what you want to see is what is the time line for this particular new enterprise or this new project. Do they have a five year plan? You know, you want to dig in a bit more to find out what is their long terms strategy for that business, for your position. So that’s a great tip, isn’t it? To do some research beforehand so that you can ask deeper questions about what this job involves and where the company is going.
Can I add something here?
Yeah.
Another thing, I… I used to interview, I don’t know, sometimes ten or fifteen people a month when I was director of a program at a school in New York… a couple of different programs, but anyway… Err, and one of the reasons that I always liked when candidates were talking about how the job would help them, why they wanted the job, not just why they were great for us, is because I found that when… when people are more invested in how it’s going to, you know, make them better professionally and their life better, they’re more likely to stay and commit and work hard. Good point. Yeah.
Yeah. It also shows enthusiasm.
Now I have another question about… A different question they sometimes ask which is ‘Why do you want to leave your current job?’ That can sometimes be hard to answer.
Yes, it can be. And I think the key here is to stay positive, and show that you’re looking at… to progress your career. Even if your reality, say for example, you know, has been difficult or there have been changes in the structure in a company and you didn’t really like it, or morale was low, turn it round and say that, you know, I’ve achieved what I wanted to achieve in this particular role and there’s no more… there’s no way of progressing in my career, so I think it’s now time for a change and to look at something different. And so that’s what I want to do. So stay positive. Mmm. And focus on the future. Mmmm. If you can. Yes. Is that the tip? Yeah. That makes sense. Yeah, it’s a great way to connect… to connect to what I was saying before, I guess about why you want to work for them and what they can do for you at this point in your career.
Yes, absolutely because the world of work has changed hugely in the last ten to fifteen years, so of course we also have people who have been made redundant. And now you can see it as a bad situation and a… and a pesimistic situation, but I know a number of people, myself included, who… for them redundancy was the best thing that ever happened to them. We should talk about the phrase ‘make someone redundant’, which means, lay them off. OK. But it’s more… it’s more common in British than American English I think, isn’t it Fluency? Absolutely. We have ‘to lay someone off’ meaning we can’t use you or we don’t need you any more. And then we have ‘to fire someone’ which is when something… when the person has done something wrong or, you know, bad. That’s right. Now we say ‘fire’ in British English as well. Mmm. But in British English we can also say ‘to sack someone’. Right. And it means the same thing. Yeah. And that’s when they’ve made a mistake or they’ve done something wrong, as you said. And you also say ‘terminate’ don’t you Fluency? Yeah, that’s more the official terminology. So if we’re talking about ‘I got fired from my job’, we wouldn’t normally say ‘I got terminated’. Certainly the verb ‘to fire’ is not used so much in official language in a company. ‘To terminate’ sounds really funny in British English. We think of Arnold Schwarzenegger and the terminator. I know, it sounds so brutal too, doesn’t it? ‘I terminate you!’ Really? What did I do that was so terrible?
OK guys. I think we’re ready for a game. Always ready for a game. Let’s go! Let’s play!
Hey, we’ve got a great game today, haven’t we? Oh yeah, this one is going to be a lot of fun. OK, so here’s how it works. We’r going to interview one another for a job, but the person who is being interviewed won’t know what the job is. So they’ll have to answer the questions and try and get the job, but they won’t actually know what it is they’re being interviewed for. That’s right and I’ve got… Shanthi and I have a job we’re going to interview you for, and you have something you’re interviewing Shanthi for. Is that right? That’s right and we’ve also got a job that we’re going to interview you for, Fluency. Ooo! Yes. Really? I didn’t know that. Oh good. Yeah. Oh yeah. So shall we show everyone what the job is. Fluency, you can’t look. All right. OK. Close your eyes Fluency. We’re starting with me and I can’t look. OK. Yep. Close your eyes. I’m covering my eyes. OK. So everybody’s seen it now. You can look back. OK. All right? So Fluency, we have some questions for you. Oh, thank you so much for the opportunity to interview with you. OK, well, first question for you is: what would you say your greatest strength is? What sort of personal qualities have you go that will be good for this job? Well, let’s see. I love working with different types of people and leearning new things from them. I work really well as part of a team. So I think that’s an important quality I have. Good good. How important are qualities like honesty to you? Oooo. I think honesty, and reliablity, and loyalty – these are very important. You haven’t mentioned anything about leadership or communication skills. Ah, well, erm… Well, part of why I think I’m really good working with different types of people is that I think I’m good at communicating with people. Listening – I’m a great listener, but also I think I’m patient and can explain things to people I work with. And then leadership. I love leading projects but I’m also happy to be led – to be part of a group that has a leader, so I think I have both qualities. Leadership qualities but also working well on a team with a leader. Uhuh. Erm, that sounds quite good doesn’t it, Shanthi? Yeah, I think so. Yeah. Not bad. I wanted to ask you another question, Fluency. Erm, what sort of experience have you had in negotiating? Are you good at negotiating? Yeah, I think so. I mean to be honset, not too much experience, but again I thnk it’s back to communication. I think with that skill I can build on my experience as a negotiator. Uhuh. So tell me about your free time interests. What do you like doing that perhaps connects with this job? Oh well. Let’s see. Uh, I love reading and doing research. I love cooking, of course. I think that would be… it’s a free time activity but you know, you can see the connection…. Cooking? …I’m sure with the job there. And music is a big interest of mine. And I think there’s a nice, you know, er… synergy with… with making music and with the work I’d be doing for your company. So… Uhuh. And what about beauty pageants? Well, I was Miss North Carolina, but that was years ago. No. Beauty pageants, let’s see. Erm. Well, not so much. No, I have to say, no. And do you watch a lot of television? Oh, well these days more YouTube actually. That doesn’t really count, does it? Oh, I don’t know, what do you think, Shanthi? Well, it could be. It’s another form of social media. But, speaking of social media, what other forms of social media do you like? For example, do you like to tweet? Do you use Twitter? Twitter’s OK but I’m more of a Facebook-Instagram guy. But if you need some one to.. to do Twitter, I do use it and I think I could get better and better at Twitter, I’m sure. Do you have many followers? Mmmm. Sure, oh yeah, absolutely. I think my neighbor, on my street. Let’s see, I think my son’s teacher. And then a few other people. Family mostly. What do you think Shanthi? Shall we give him the job? Oooo. I think he’s going to have to increase his er… his use of Twitter. Erm, because for this job he’s definitely going to need to tweet a lot more. And he’s going to need to increase his number of followers. Erm, I don’t know. Well, I think we could give him a go. Let him have a go at this. I don’t think he could do worse than the present one. He can’t, no, nobody can do worse than him. Fluency, what job do you think we’re interviewing you for. Err, I can guess this one for sure because these are the questions that you would only ask if you’re trying to find the best Presidents of the United States. Woohoo! That’s exactly right. Bravo! You asked all the right questions. OK, I think Shanthi’s might be a little bit harder. Shall we interview Shanthi now? Yes, let’s go. So Shanthi, I wanted to start by asking you about your experience, and thye training that you’ve had for this job. OK, so I graduated from university and I got a degree in politics and international studies. And I’ve had twenty years in the finance world. So my qualifications and experience has been in investment management and in finance. And then I changed career and then I came into Business English teaching. So banking and finance is her background Fluency. Yeah. I mean I’ve heard of career changes but erm… This is quite unusual. Erm, what about manual dexterity? Yeah, could I ask her a question about that? Yeah. Yeah, so, so, how… are you good… good with your hands? Erm, I mean all this finance stuff, it’s very interesting, but yeah, like Vicki was saying, manual dexterity. It’s really important how well you can, you know how precise and how comfortable you are using your hands. Oh, OK. Well. I’m good at knitting and crocheting. Wow! And yeah, you know, I use my hands well. That’s a pretty big leap from knitting to what we’d have in mind for you in this position. Erm. Yeah. Right Vicki? Yeah, I’m surprised by that, but maybe you’re really good with modern technology. Ah, that’s important, yeah. Well, yeah, I’ve had to learn a lot in the last few years, especially, you know, the different apps and what to do. Apps? Yeah. yeah. Well it sounds like you’re someone who likes to jump in and experiment then? Yeah, I don’t mind trying things out, so I’ll jump in a try something out. OK, so you’re not particularly cautious. You prefer to take risks. Mmm. But it all depends. I mean, physical risk, if it’s going to hurt me, then no, I’m not very good at that. But if it’s a business risk, then I don’t mind too much. Well actually we’re more worried about whether it’s going to hurt the other person. That’s right. Yeah. Am I … Am I apply for a job to be a wrester or something? Vicki do you want to tell her. I think we should tell her, don’t you? You’re applying for a job to be a brain surgeon. Obviously. A brain surgeon? We were surprised by your training. Yeah, you might want to shelve some of that finance interest for a little bit. A brain surgeon? Oh I get it. Manual dexterity. Yeah, we were impressed by your knitting skills, but we’d have prefered to hear sewing, I think. Yeah, the knitting could lead to sewing. I’m not sure if sewing could lead to surgery though. So hit the street. It’s a definite no. Yeah, no that was totally way way off. OK, do you want to interview me now and see if I can get a job? Yeah, I’d love to. I’ve got time because I have almost four years until I need to start my new job as President. So er…

Yeah, Shanthi and I have some questions for you, Vicki. Erm, Shanthi, do you want to begin? Yeah. OK. So Vicki, we’d like to know if you prefer to work on your own or do you like to work in a team? I love to work in a team. I really enjoy working with lots and lots of people. Hmm. Oh. OK, so should you have moments when you have to work on your own, would that be a problem? Oh no. I could perhaps work on my own for a little while. Because independent work is very important in this position. Oh, Oh I’m a very sort of independent person actually. OK. Good. Erm… how about travel. I mean would you be OK being away from home for, I don’t know, maybe a week at a time – maybe even a little bit longer? Oh, I love travelling. In fact I love going to different countries. I hope it involves foreign travel. Not so much actually. Ah. OK. Mmm. Maybe it could become an international job in the future. That’s what I’m hoping. Or Maybe not. Shanthi, your turn to ask a question. Err, OK I would like to know, in terms of your time keeping, are you usually on time? Oh erm, I’m very very punctual. In fact normally I arrive ten minutes early for every event. Interesting. Wow! OK, and this is also with traffic? Erm, well, I don’t drive any more these days. Uhuh. But I take Ubers a lot. Shanthi, would Ubers work for this position? I don’t know. It’s going to be a bit difficult, isn’t it Fluency? Just a little bit. Err, you know, my next question Vicki – it’s, it’s very interesting to us that you don’t drive. You know I was going to ask, if you have a clean driving record. Because that’s actually… Well I do have a licence. And I have a clean driving licence. It’s just because I live in the centre of the city, I haven’t driven for a few years. Is it because you don’t like driving? Erm, well it’s very busy. The traffic’s very bad in the city centre and I can walk everywhere.
Aha! So when you’re out of the city, how do you like to travel? How do you travel normally, once you get out? I love boats. I love planes. Flying is great. Hmm. Wow! Uhuh, Uhuh. Shanthi, I think there may be some challenges for Vicki in this position. One more question I have Vicki is how… how is your endurance? I mean can you work for a long period of time without a break? When I get interested in a task, I like to work all night on it. Oh wow! That’s good. So what do you think? Have I got the job? That’s a tough one because – Shanthi, here’s what I think… I think that… What was the job? One second. What we just found out about you Vicki is really important. The endurance but no driving licence. Oh you say driving licence, by the way and in the States we say driver’s license. Just something for everyone to know out there. What do you think, Shanthi? Good point. You know Vicki, you wouldn’t be right for this job. Oh no! I’m so sorry. So what job have I missed out on? Tell me! Well, driving an eighteen wheeler. A truck driver, of course. You were going to be a truck driver. Oh a truck driver! Do you know, I might actually like that job, because you get to see America, don’t you? That’s true, but unfortunately you chose to tell us about your love for walking and boats and planes and pretty much every mode of transportation you could think of besides a truck – which is not so good when you’re interviewing for the job of truck driver. Ah. And you wanted to go abroad. You wanted to do international travel. Ah, I’m going to have to give myself a mark here. Finally! Boing for Vicki. It’s about time. OK, I think we should stop playing this stupid game and have a rap. Let’s do it! Oooo! Let’s do it! Cool!
Once again it’s Fluency MC, Flu, Flu, Fluency MC. Once again it’s Fluency MC. Grammar though lyrics, kick it! Ha! Yeah! Well, I want to tell you about the rap for today. But first I want to quickly explain, in case we have any new viewers for the English Show today, why we do raps on the English Show. So, I like to write short raps using rhyme and rhythm to give you practice with the vocabulary and the grammar structiures that we’ve included in different segments of the show. So I made a rap for today and Vicki made a video. WE’re going to show you the video so you can watch, read and listen. We’ll have the lyrics there. Then we’re going to practice together and Shanthi, will you practice with us. Yes, of course. Can’t wait. Excellent. And then what we’ll do is show the video again. And of course you can watch this English Show program and all the English Show programs multiple times to keep practising, because these raps really can help your pronunciation, your listening skills, and most importantly, help you remember the great vocabulary and structures that we talked about today on the English Show. So, Jay! Could you roll the video?

Good morning! Thank you for coming in for this interview today.
I’ve just had a look at your resume.
What are your greatest strengths?
How about your long-term objectives?
Why do you want to work for our company?
In what ways would you be effective?
What gives you the most satisfaction?
What are you passionate about? Do you work well on a team?
Absolutely, without a doubt!
I achieved a lot at my last job, but I recently resigned.
I have big plans for the future, you know.
Well, thank you for your time.
We appreciate your coming in and we’ll be in touch soon.
Thank you for this opportunity. I look forward to hearing from you.

All right. Cool, very good. Great. I love the video Vicki, thanks for that. It was fun to make. So there’s vocabulary and grammar structures that I hope you remember from earlier in the show. So things like ‘resigned’ and we talked about ‘achieving’ versus accomplishing. And I also put in some other vocabulary that I think is very common in job interviews so I focused a lot on the questions the interviewer asks, as you can see, not so much on the answers to the questions. And it might seem a little fast so we’re going to do it slower but with the same rhythm, because the rhythm here is the natural rhythm of conversation. So Shanthi, if you will repeat after me for this practice? And everybody out there in the audience, please do the same. Shanthi, ready to go? Yes, I am. Ready everybody?
Let’s go like this.
Good morning! Thank you for coming in for this interview today.
Good morning! Thank you for coming in for this interview today.
Good. I’ve just had a look at your resume.
I’ve just had a look at your resume.
Good. In the United States we usually say resume. Er, resume. Other places sometimes, cv. I say cv. Yes, cv for sure. Curriculum vitae. Yeah.
What are your greatest strengths?
What are your greatest strengths?
How about your long-term objectives?
How about your long-term objectives?
Why do you want to work for our company?
Why do you want to work for our company?
In what ways would you be effective?
In what ways would you be effective?
What gives you the most satisfaction?
What gives you the most satisfaction?
What are you passionate about?
What are you passionate about?
Do you work well on a team?
Do you work well on a team?
Absolutely, without a doubt!
Absolutely, without a doubt!
Good, notice we say ‘on a team’ usually in American English, but British? ‘In a team.’ Yeah, yeah. I was going to correct you then! Aha! All right let’s continue. I achieved a lot at my last job.
I achieved a lot at my last job.
But I recently resigned.
But I recently resigned.
I have big plans for the future, you know.
I have big plans for the future, you know.
Well, thank you for your time.
Well, thank you for your time.
We appreciate your coming in.
We appreciate your coming in.
And we’ll be in touch soon.
And we’ll be in touch soon.
Thank you for this opportunity.
I look forward to hearing from you.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Very good. One more thing I wanted to mention, because some of you might be wondering, ‘we appreciate your coming in’. In more formal English in American English (I’ll ask you two in a moment about British) we would use the possessive pronoun here – your coming in. But in everyday conversation in American English, we don’t use this so much. ‘We appreciate you coming in’ but in a more formal context it would be ‘your. How about in British? Oh same thing in British. Although I have to say when I saw it I thought mmm. Because I’m so used to hearing it in the informal way. Great, well thanks Shanthi, and thanks to all of you for practicing. As you see we slowed it down, but I hope when you’re watching the video, you’ll notice that the rhythm is the same, so for example, we said, erm, ‘how about your long term objectives?’. In the video it’s more ‘how-about-your…’ Right? But the idea is to get practice with it more slowly, really focusing on it as we did. And then also to get listening practice and then when you’re ready, also speaking practice by rapping along with the video. So can we check out the video again, Jay?

Good morning! Thank you for coming in for this interview today.
I’ve just had a look at your resume.
What are your greatest strengths?
How about your long-term objectives?
Why do you want to work for our company?
In what ways would you be effective?
What gives you the most satisfaction?
What are you passionate about? Do you work well on a team?
Absolutely, without a doubt!
I achieved a lot at my last job, but I recently resigned.
I have big plans for the future, you know.
Well, thank you for your time.
We appreciate your coming in and we’ll be in touch soon.
Thank you for this opportunity. I look forward to hearing from you.

That was great. Well, thank you. Great video for the rap and I hope everybody enjoyed it. I hope that everybody who is applying for a job and has an interview coming up, gets that job. Good luck. Yes! Good luck! Hopefully you’ll know before the interview what the job is for. That definitely helps you prepare. And I want to say thank you to Shanthi for all the great tips she’s given us about interviews today. Thank you Shanthi. Thank you very much it was a pleasure. Listen. If people want to stay in touch with you, or get in touch with you, or follow you, what can they do? Well, what they could do is they can have a look at my website: English with a Twist dot com, sign up to my free e-guide where they… and they sign up to my blog, and that way I deliver weekly lessons every Friday, which is specifically for Business English. And they also get a free e-guide on the ten ways to communicate better and more effectively in business with English. Now the other thing is you’ve actually written a book about interviews – English job interviews, haven’t you? Yes, I have. It’s part of my book called Business English Secrets. And one section of it is dedicated to job interviews, but it also covers other areas like presentations, and also writing skills, and small talk – which are the key skills that a lot of my clients have, you know, asked me to cover and where I’ve coached them. And job interviews is a big section of that. Yes. Fantastic! Great. And erm… if you want to follow us, and I hope you do, then how can they follow us on ‘The English Show’ Fluency? Well, it’s really easy because you can look in the description box below for all the information. Definitely our YouTube channels: Fluency MC and Simple English Videos, and also to be on our mailing lists to get information from us. You can do that by going to our websites. So I think all we need to do now is say goodbye to everybody, but first, good-bye to you Jay and thank you for your help today. Thanks so much Jay. It’s been my great pleasure. I’ve had a lot of fun. I hope you have. It was great to see you Shanthi. And we’ll see you in the next show! Goodbye then everybody. Bye. See you soon. Bye-bye. Bye.

learning with movies

How to improve your listening and vocabulary by watching movies

Would you like to improve your English by watching movies? Then this English Show is for you. Story Paul joins us on The English Show and he has lots of great tips to help you.

Find out how to select the right movies, what to do about captions and much much more.

He’s also given us a checklist with lots of resources so you can find out where to view movies and download transcripts. Download it here: StoryPaul-ImproveYourEnglishWithMovies


Click here to see another English Show.
Click here to visit Story Paul’s website.
Click here to get more learning tips

Improve your English by watching movies video script

Come on everybody, it’s going to start.

Well that’s true. But you know it took… Who did that?
Hey! Hello everybody. Welcome to the English Show. I’m Vicki and I’m an English teacher and I’m based in Philadelphia, and with me is my good friend Fluency who’s over in Paris.
Yes, I’m in Paris, I’m a teacher, I’m a trainer, I’m a knowledge entertainer. I like to help you practice English with ryhme and rhythm. And we’ve got some great tips for you in this English Show about how to learn English with movies.
Yeah. And we’re going to be joined by Story Paul.
Whoo! Story Paul.
But there’s one other person who you should meet, who’s my husband Jay, who’s working away behind the scenes to make this happen.
Hi guys! It’s great to see everybody. I’m looking forward to this exciting show and seeing Story Paul in just a little while.
But the other thing I’m hoping can happen is I’m hoping that Jay can bring me to Paris. Oh I hope so too. Because I’d love to come and see you in Paris.
Would you? Come on over.

How am I going to get to Paris this week Jay?
Oh this week I’m going to turn you into a helicopter. A helicopter? Yes, put your hands out. This is hard work. I’m here!
Well that was exciting. Hey! I’m here. I’ve made it. Vicki! Fist bump. Or maybe I should ask you for a helicopter hand pump. That was really impressive.
I know. It was a lot of hard work, you know.
I can imagine.
Yes, sometimes you come and it’s really easy but this time you made a lot of effort. But you know something else that can be hard work is learning English, so on the English Show we like to make it fun work.
Yeah, it’s all about practice. And we’ve got a guy with us today who’s all into fun work of learning English with movies and he’s going to give us some good tips on how to do that.
So let’s go and meet him.
Yes. Paul, are you there? Story Paul in the house! Welcome!
Hey Vicki, Fluency and Jay! So nice to be here with you guys. Thank you for inviting me. It’s a pleasure to be here. Thank you.
How are you doing? And where are you?
Hey, I’m doing great and I am in Buenos Aires, Argentina on the other side of the world where it’s still kind of warm, we’re still coming out of summer, in a big bustling city and just having a great time joining you guys.
Paul, we can see that you’re a movie fan from all the posters up behind you. Our students want to know how can we learn English with movies. Have you got some good tips for us?
I do. You know that’s really what I love to do most. I love working with context based techniques and stories of course, and working with movies is one of my favourite things, so absolutely. You know movies provide learners with authentic language, and they also provide them with a memory tool because they’re stories. So the first thing learners want to do is they want to choose a movie, a genre – right genre is science fiction or roamnce or action or drama – that they like or choose a movie based on an actor or an actress that they happen to know. That’s the first step so something that will provide engagement for them.
OK, so the first thing to do is to amke sure you like it. Find something you like.
Great! Then what?
OK. Once you know that, choose a short clip. Right now in the resources I’ve provided some great places where you can do that. You don’t really need to watch a long movie to learn some language from it and a short two or three minute clip like a scene or a trailer is just fantastic.
OK, so the next tip is keep it short. And Paul has given us some resources and we’re going to be putting them on our Facebook group. Right. And putting them in there so make sure you check that out later. And I’ll put them in the details below as well. So we’ve got some tips for where to go and find movies.
And trailers, as you said.
Trailers are good, aren’t they, because they’re very short.
Yeah. Absolutely. Trailers are very short. They’re very nice just to get an idea of a basic story and getting a few quick lines, which is usually what they include. now…
Yes, go ahead.
OK, I have another question. Why are movies good for learning English? What…Why are they useful for practice?
Well you know that’s really… that’s the jackpot question. Movies provide three things. They provide learners with a really natural access to speaking patterns. Right. When we talking about speaking patterns, what we want to do is we want to differentiate that from the type of writing-style textbook English which we learn initially, which is necessary, but as we advance, it’s nice to get a feeling for how people really speak in the real world – with interruptions, and fillers and sometimes repeating themselves and changing directions. And movies provide this and provide learners with a great opportunity to listen to this again and again. But that’s not it. They also provide other things and I can go into that as well.
Great. Well, I think before you go into it, we should have something else like… conversation time.
Is it comnversation time? We’ve got a conversation for you now which is about me and Jay going to the movies. OK great. All right. And at the movies we had a problem. So… Did you?
Your task is to listen and watch and find out what problem we had. OK. So we’re gonna watch you and Jay at the movies, and during the clip, we need to try and notice a problem you had.
OK, it’s not actually at the movies, but we’re talking about it. We’re talking about a trip to the movies.
You’re talking about a trip to the movies. Got it. OK!
We went to the cinema last night. Jay’s phone rang during the movie.
It was only for a couple of seconds before I turned it off.
It rang twice.
You do not look happy. It was a very, very short conversation. Based on a true story I imagine. Based on true life. You bet! Authentic. Aunthentic. Yes. Now you’re looking at the script here for what we said, but some words are blanked out. Do you know the missing words? So let’s have a look at them. OK. We went to the cinema last night. Notice I said ‘cimema’. That’s because I’m British. But Fluency, I think you’d say something else there wouldn’t you? Definitely. We’d say go to the movies and we were in the movie theater. We don’t use the word cinema very often.
OK. It’s a British English word but we could also say movies in Brtitish English as well. OK. OK. And then it was great, Jay’s phone rang – do you know what this word is? There it is. It’s during the movie. And then look at the next one. Jay said ‘It was only for a couple of seconds before I turned it off. So notice those words ‘during’ and ‘for’. We use ‘during’ to say when something happens, but we use ‘for’ to say how long something happens. So two little prepositions there about time but with rather different meanings. And then the final word that’s missing here. It rang twice. Twice means two times. So one time is once. Two times is twice. What’s three times? It’s three times. There is an old fashioned word that we say- thrice – but we don’t use it much these days. We say three times. OK. So that was my little conversation about movies.
That was really fun.
Hey, Story Paul, what do you… do you like to watch movies at home or go out to movies usually or do you do both? Well, you know, that’s something that has changed a lot over the years. Modern life and you know, having a child, having a daughter, makes it a little bit more difficult to go out as often as I’d like to so I end up being a consumer of home movies, just like most people, you know with the streaming services today. But I do enjoy being in the movie theater. If I have a choice, that’s what I choose. For people learning English and practicing English, it’s just great now that it’s easier – less expensive and more convenient to access movies on the internet and the short clips, as you mentioned, to be able to repeat and watch the same clips numerous times which will be really beneficial. And a cool thing, of course, if you’re watching with Netflix or on a DVD is you can turn the captions on. Mmm, yes.
So what do you think of that Paul?
Well, with the captions I think it’s a good idea to use them on and off depending on what you’re trying to do. In some cases, depending on the level of the learner, you can, you know maybe first if you’re not so familiar with the topic and it’s a little bit above your level you can leave the captions on, and then once you’re familiar with that scene, or you’re familiar with that episode or that movie, you can watch it again with the captions off. And you’re going to feel really comfortable doing that. ‘Cause my students…
That’s great advice, yeah.
Well, my students often say that they find it hard to understand every word, and it worries them.
Yeah. Yes, this is a big problem. A lot of people mention that to me since I work with movies. And I, you know, what I usually tell them is to first all relax – that their goal is not to, you know, capture every word. They should be paying more attention to the situation, the way the characters are looking at each other and the overall scene. And if they do that, if they pay attention to that, the language will actually find itself, you know, going into their knowledge base anyway – not the complete sentences, but important chunks of language. They will actually aquire that over time. Especially if they repeat watch.
I’ve had that conversation many times with students about should we use subtitles or not, and in my language or in English, and more and more, what I’ve been saying is ‘What do you like? What makes you most relaxed and motivated to watch?’ Because in the end I feel the most important thing is how often you do it and how much you enjoy it. So if you’re trying to do it a certain way because someone told you to do it that way, that might not be the best.
But I think we’ve got a great tip there which is don’t worry about understanding every word and pay attention to the situation and the mood and the attitudes and the emotions of the actors as well and that’s going to draw you into the story and make it enjoyable, isn’t it?
Can I ask Paul one question? Because I think he’d be a great person to take this question. So Paul, one thing that I do in French, when I see a movie in French because that’s the language I’m learning, is I like to read about it in English before I go. And I like to know what’s going to happen and I find when I am more prepared, knowing the story and the characters, then I’m able to really grab more of the language. Do you agree?
I think that’s fantastic. I think that really works. There’s this idea sometimes in language learning that, you know, you should never do anything in L1, in language one, that you should go straight all into languague two, and really if you are prepared ahead of time and you know something about the story,then when you actually receive the story in your own language, French in your case and English for the English learners out there, you’re going to be more relaxed than if it’s the first time you’re exposed to this mystery movie and you have no idea who anyone is or what the story is. Then you have to tackle too many obstacles at once and again, it’s what you said before, whatever works for you. If you feel that subtitles in your own language help you, then by all means. If that’s going to keep you more relaxed then do that, and later on you can just take them out and not use them.
OK. So that’s another great tip, isn’t it: to prepare beforehand. And I have another question. What can you do afterwards because is it just a question of watching, or are there things you can do afterwards that can help? Well really that’s… that’s where you can really make the material more yours, right. You can start to own it if you do things afterwards. And that’s… you know it’s kind of like when you watch a movie you like and then, you know, you sit around with friends and you talk about it, you get really good at telling the story. You kind of, you know, start owning it. So what I think works out well is role playing. And in the resources you’ll find, you know, how to find the scripts and grab a friend or with your teacher or with a like minded learner, role play a scene. Not the entire two hour movie but a scene. A three minute scene. That is a great way of acquiring the language in a deeper way. So there’s another tip which is to… after the movie, to talk about it with your friends and also to engage with role play and discuss it with your freinds.
OK, so we’ve got some great tips there and we’ve got some great resources. I’ll put some in the details below. And make sure you join our Facebook group so you can find them there. And also share the information in the Facebook group so look for us and join. Please. Yeah, and erm, I think it’s time now to take a question. Oh we have a question!
OK guys. Now we had a question that came up related to our last English Show. Because in our last English Show we were looking at the verb ‘suspect’. You know when you think something is going on that’s not good, you suspect something is going on. It’s believing something is true but you’re not absolutely certain. You have no proof. You have a strong feeling. You have a strong feeling and no proof. And we had a question from Neven Anise and she said: I would like to ask you, what’s the difference between doubt and suspect. So that verb ‘suspect’. But also the verb ‘doubt’. Actually I said she. I think it’s a he. Sorry Neven. I think so, yeah. Sorry. And when do we use each one. In fact what’s going on here is they’re both used in situations where we’re not certain of something and so if we suspect something is true we think it’s true, but if we doubt it’s true then we think it’s NOT true. So it’s like a positive idea and a negative idea.
So I’ve got a question for you which is can you think of something that you doubt.
Hmmm. Is that for me or for Story Paul? Let’s go to Story Paul and find out. Can you think of something that you doubt, Story Paul? Well, let’s see. Something that I doubt. Well you know it’s a really nice sunny day so I doubt that anyone went out with their umbrella. OK. You’re based in Argentina so you’re in the southern hemisphere where it’s summer, isn’t it? Whereas… That’s right. Whereas it’s very cold over where you are Fluency, isn’t it, because it’s winter. Ahhh, no I suspect you have not been following the forecast in France because it is beautiful here. It’s around, well, nineteen degrees, eighteen degrees. And do you doubt anything about the weather? About the weather? Yeah, I doubt we will ever have a tornado in France because they just don’t happen, so I strongly doubt that. I think you can be sure, almost sure of that. Almost 100%. Though with global warming, some strange things are happening. So it is a doubt. I doubt we can be sure about the weather any more anywhere because of this. Well I doubt if I can go out without a warm coat today because it’s cold in Philly. Is it? It’s winter here. I suspect you’re growing a bit tired of winter, You’re quite right. well, great question. We’d love to have more of your questions. You can submit them in the comments for the English Show on YouTube. You can also email us, or even better, in our Facebook group, the English Show. Post them there as questions and we’d love to answer them on the show. I think it’s time for a game. Oh I love games. Let’s have a game! Let’s do it!
OK. Tell us about the game.
Today’s game is all about movies. And I’ve got some very old movies for you. I hope you like old movies. Oh, like vintage movies? Yeah, and… OK. And just like paul was saying, we want to have fun with it, we’ve got a little fun task for you. While you watch the movie you’re going to hear it with some music playing, and you have to guess what people are saying. So when you say ‘music’, you mean the sound of the dialogue will be off. You won’t hear what the people are saying the first time you watch it. You have to guess what they’re saying. Are you ready? Yeah. And there’s also an extra special bonus. I’ll give you a little ‘ting’ if you can guess the year of the movie. And you might… an extra ‘ting’ if you can guess the actual actor in the movie, but that’s very very hard. Because I’m worried. You know Story Paul, he’s a master. Well, these are quite old movies so you might win this game Fluency. We’ll see. I doubt that. I suspect Paul will win. OK, let’s watch the first one. Let’s watch the first clip.
So what did you think? Hmmm, am I starting or is Paul? Let’s ask Paul first. Paul. What did you think they were saying? Well it seemed like it was a husband and a wife and he was off to work and it was some kind of a special day for him, or maybe for them. So maybe he was telling… it was their anniversay and he was telling her that he was going to be home early so they can go out and celebrate. Interesting. Interesting. Of course you did have that goodbye. Yeah. And a special day. Interesting. Erm. You’re totally wrong. I’ll give you a little noise for that. OK, Fluency. What do you think? Well I’m going to try and probably be totally wrong also, but I was thinking husband and wife but you know it’s hard to tell at that time period. You know the age maybe of the husband and wife. I’m going to say, I’m going to say it was his daughter. Just to be different. And I’m going to say that at the beginbning he looked really worried about something so I think he had, you know, some job interview or some presentation and then she said something to make him more confident. I don’t know. Maybe ‘You’ll do well’ or “after we’re going to go out and have fun’. I don’t know. Something like this. OK. Was it his daughter? Argh! Actually, it was his girlfriend. And this guy has a wife. Oooo! So he’s talking to the girlfriend. Oh wow. Yeah. And erm… and let’s see what they said. Let’s watch it. Oh I’ve got to go. I’m supposed to be back. I’ll come here tomorrow noon Kitty. I’ll be waiting for you. I’m sorry you have to go. Bye-bye dear. Oh. Don’t forget the money. I’ll get it. Bye-bye Chris. Goodbye.
So you were right that it was a scene where they were saying goodbye. So here are the words everyone. He’s got to leave. I’m supposed to be back. He’s got to go. And then she says ‘Ahh, I’ll be waiting for you’. And then she says something very interesting. She says ‘Oh. Don’t forget the money’. So he’s obviously giving his girlfriend some money here. And notice those words. You can say bye-bye or you can say goodbye. OK, did you like that clip? It was great. Classic. Yeah, we need to try to guess when it was from and who was in it. That’s right. Did you recognize any of the actors or can you give me a date? I didn’t. I mean I can try to guess a date. How about you Paul? I can guess the actress she looks like er… Betty Davis, and he… I’m going to say Orson Wells. I don’t know. It wasn’t Betty Davis. It was Joan Bennet. Do you want to…
I know one of the actors. You know one of the actors! Who was the actor Jay? Edward G Robinson. Yeah! See Jay’s very old so he remembers them. That’s right. Edward G Robinson was the guy. And do you want to guess the date? Go ahead Paul. 1948. And what about you, Fluency? Errr, I’m going to guess a little earlier. I’m going to go with 1939. 1948, 1939. The winner here is Story Paul. It was 1945, so right at the end of the second world war. Right. OK. Are you ready for your next clip then? Yeah, this is fun. Let’s do it. Let’s do another one.
OK, you know Paul was saying earlier about looking at short clips and looking at the emotions and the mood and the feeling. What do you think the mood and the feeling was there? Yeah well apparently the gentleman broke an important ceramic vase or other type of home ornament that was important to the lady in the scene. Yes, you’re right. And she was not very happy about that. She was not happy. What do you think they were saying? Oh dear! That was my mother’s favorite something. Oh good guess. Good guess. OK, what about you Fluency? What do you think? Well I’m going to guess that the guy was, you know, saying sorry in some way and apologizing for what he did and feeling bad that he was so clumsy. OK. Clumsy is and intereesting word, isn’t it. If you’re clumsy then you do things like knock things over or break things. Yeah, and because at the end it looked like she was protecting the other one. So maybe she was worried that he was going to do it again. Absolutely. You’re both very close actually. And you’re right Fluency that he was saying sorry. And when you listen again.. Yeah. When you listen to it, pay attention to how he says sorry. OK, let’s watch it. OK. Argh! Oh, I’m powerful sorry. I hope it wasn’t new. Oh no, very old. Only two thousand years. That’s good. Maybe a little glue. Oh do come on. So there you are. I hope it wasn’t new. Oh no, very old. Only two thousand years. That’s lucky! Now notice he said ‘I’m powerful sorry’. I don’t think we’d say this these days, would we? I don’t think so. No. I think terribly sorry, or I’m really, so, very sorry. That’s it. We’ve got all these other intensifiers that we use. Words we put before sorry to say that we’re very sorry. So I’m very sorry, I’m really sorry, I’m terribly sorry. I’m so sorry. I think that’s all of them. What do you think? Any more? Those are the most common probably. Those are the most common. Yeah, they’re the most common. Notice there’s another word here that you might not know which is ‘glue’. Glue is that substance that you put on things when you want to stick them together. So he’s suggesting perhaps they can mend it with a little glue. Erm, not can you give me a date? Do you want to guess a date Story Paul? Hmm. I’m guessing this one is a bit older than the previous clip so I’m going to go… I’m going to go with 1940 for this one. Uhuh. OK. And what about you Fluency? Yeah, yeah, I would say the late thirties. Late thirties? I want an exact date then please. Argh! 1937. It was 1937! Wow! I can’t believe it!. And I don’t know. I doubt if you can, I doubt if you can name the actor ’cause… No I don’t think so. Let’s see if Jay can. Do you know Jay? I’m afraid that’s even before my time. Hi name was Guy Kibbee, but that’s by the by. All right. This next clip is very old as well. I think you’ll recognise the actors in this and let’s watch it. You’re right. I recorgnized them. Oh. Who was it? WEll those are, those are two of the three stooges. You’re quite right. Did you know that Paul? Yes. Absolutely. I am very familiar with the three stooges. I grew up watching them. Larry, Curly and Mo. You could name them! I can never remember which is which. But wasn’t that Shemp? I think you get a point for naming them. That’s very good. Larry, Shemp and Mo. That’s before Curly. That’s Shemp. That was Shemp in the car. That’s Shemp? Oh, Oh.Give me half a point. so what do you think they were saying? Paul? So I think one of the three stooges said something inappropriate and he got slapped by the lady. Something inappropriate, you think. Any guesses for what it could be? Any ideas? What do you think Fluency? Ah well it probably connects to Shemp in the car with some strange… I don’t know what was going on. It seemed like after he said, oh you know, I don’t know. My animal brother or friend is in the car or something. I don’t know. I really have no idea but I think it was because of that. It shocked her or got her angry. Yeah. OK. Errr… in fact he was saying something quite surprising. Let’s… oh, do you want to give me a date for this before we watch it? Mmm. What do you think Paul? I think these are also from the 1940s. Err… but I’m not sure which part of the 1940s. I’ll just go with 1945. Uhuh. What about you Fluency? What do you think? Errr. I’ll go a little earlier. 1941. OK. The winner here is Paul, because it was 1947. OK, so let’s watch it. Say miss. Would you like to get married? What? Get married. Well, I don’t know. But you are kind of cute at that. Oh, it’s not me. It’s him. Owwww!!! OK. I never thought Larry would seem cute to someone. I think they were thinking which one is the cutest of the three. I don’t know. Yeah probably. So notice something here. He said, ‘Would you like to get married?’ Right? And notice we say get married. He didn’t say ‘Would you like to marry?’ He said ‘Would you like to get married?’ This is much more common in English than to marry. And then she said you are kind of cute. We still use ‘cute’ a lot in modern English, don’t we? Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. Definitely. We can use it to describe a person or we can use it cute animal, so we watch a lot of YouTube videos with cute kittens and cute puppies. Mmmm. And even what somebody says can be cute an what they wear, especially women. Uhuh. Yeah. OK, I’ve got one more for you. Shall we watch that? Let’s watch it. Yeah. Wow! I see why you saved this one for last. This one is the most mysterious. It is mysterious, isn’t it? What do you suspect is happening? Oh boy. You know the guy. He’s playing with fire there. He’s shaking that champagne bottle and then pointing it at her. The cork could come out and hurt her, you know, and injure her so I think he’s trying to be kind of funny, kind of a wise guy but very dangerous. Very good. I agree, but I wonder what they’re saying. That’s tough. Well, what was her reaction, as well. Do you think she was cross with him or was she frightened? Yes, she seemed pretty er… pretty OK. She didn’t seem that worried about the danger there in the situation. I don’t know. Maybe she’s used to… Do you think she noticed? … this person being crazy. Any ideas for what they’re saying? Are you going to do that trick again, shaking the champagne bottle and pointing it at me? I don’t know. Yeah, whay do you always play around like that after you’ve already drunk three bottles of champagne? You are both actually very very close. Because, yeah, you said ‘Why do you always do that?’ which is exactly what she said so I’m going to give you a little ting for that. That’s incredible. OK, so let’s watch what happened. Why do you always do that? It spoils the chanpagne. It might explode. Never does. Will you guarantee that? +That isn’t funny Frederick. OK. She’s used to it. Yeah. Now notice the use of always here. It’s quite interesting. We often use it when we’re criticizing someone. ‘Why do you always do that’. It’s the sort of thing I sometimes find I have to say to Jay. You know. He’s probably says she’s always saying that I always do that. Yeah. And then, and then at the end she says to him, ‘That isn’t funny Frederick’. That’s another thing I have to say to Jay. Is that right Jay? Do you get these ideas from the movies or… I think it’s verty funny actually. OK, do you want top have a go at naming an actor or giving me a date? I can’t name anybody in these movies I’m just really not educated in this time period with movies. The actor looked more familiar but I just didn’t remember his face., I’m just going to throw a gues. Vincent Price? I’m not sure. Well done! Wow! All right! That must have been a young Vincent Price. I guess I only know the Vincent Price from, you know, the Michael Jackson video. OK, so Vimcent Price. He was a famous actor in his day. And the date? Any ideas for the date? Well they all seem to be in the 1940s. My gosh, errr… 1949 for this one. What about you Fluency? 1948. You’re both going to get [buzzer] That hurts. You’re way off. You’re way off. It was 1959. So it was actually quite recent, that one, comparatively. Yeah, absoluetly. Really off. OK guys. What do you think we should do next? Is it time for a rap? I want to do a rap but I have a really quick knock knock joke for movies that I just heard yesterday. Oh tell me. Ready? Yeah. Yeah. Then we can do the rap. OK. Knock, knock. Who’s there? Who’s there? Dishes. Dishes who? Dishes Sean Connery. I just had to throw that in today because, you know, what better day to do it on the English Show? Love it! OK, and the other thing I want you to do today is to give us a rap. Yeah! Let’s have a rap. Once again it’s Fluency MC. Flu… Flu… Fluency MC. Once again it’s Fluency MC. Grammar through lyrics. Kick it. All right! Tell us about the rap. Well we’re going to do some of that grammar through lyrics, vocabulary though lyrics. So just like short clips are great, movie clips, short songs and raps are great to to repeat and to get that grammar and vocabulary stuck in your heads with rhyme and rhythm, rhythm and rhyme. So I’ve written a short rap using some of the vocabulary we’ve talked about today and Vicki has made a video, so if you’re new to the English Show, the way we do this, the way we go, how we start to flow is we put the video on first for you to watch, listen, read the lyrics and then we’re going to practice slowly togather and Story Paul is going to help us if he’s willing. Yeah, and then we’re going to watch the video again. And of course you can always replay the English Show, and I hope you do, top practice again and again, so you can remember all the great vocabulary and grammar and pronunciation that we’re practicing with you here. Excellent. So we can watch the video.
We went to the cinema last night to see that new Star Wars movie.
Was it any good?
My boyfriend loved it, but it didn’t really move me.
He’s always talking about it, you know.
Star Wars this, Star Wars that.
That’s kind of cute!
Are you serious? And then when we were
buying our snacks, he spilled the popcorn
on the counter and dropped his soda on some kid’s head.
I’m sure he was terribly sorry.
Maybe you should go out with him instead!
I love it. yeah, well, I don’t know if you know this Vicki, but Story Paul, do you think I might have been inspired by you in any way when I wrote this? Absolutely. Story Paul is a Star Wars nut. So I was thinking got to write the rap about Star Wars so that’s how I started off, and then maybe you noticed some of the vocabulary Vicki talked about today like ‘He’s always talking about it’, right? And maybe you’ve noticed ‘It’s kind of cute’. Right, we mentioned that. And I think a few other things in there. There’s ‘terribly sorry’, right? Yeah, Yeah. So that’s what we do every week and I hope you enjoyed it. Paul. How does your wife feel about your Star Wars obsession? Well, I think she wriote the lyrics to this and sent them to you. Well, I was busy this week, I needed a ghost writer. That’s my theory. She thinks it’s cute. She is always complaining that I’m always talking about Star Wars and that. She doesn’t think it’s very cute. And I have to sometimes say I’m terribly sorry but I cannot help it. I suspect that it gets a little annoying for her but, you know, I doubt that it’s a big problem. So anyway, what I’d like to do, Strory Paul, what we do with our special guests and you out there in the audience, English Show viewers, is let’s do some repetition more slowly so you can really feel the rhythm and rhyme with these lyrics so Paul, are you good to go? Will you repeat after me? Let’s do it. Yeah, Ok everybody. Here we go.
We went to the cinema last night to see that new Star Wars movie.
We went to the cinema last night to see that new Star Wars movie. All right. Good.
Was it any good? My boyfriend loved it, but it didn’t really move me.
Was it any good? My boyfriend loved it, but it didn’t really move me. Good.
He’s always talking about it, you know. Star Wars this, Star Wars that.
He’s always talking about it, you know. Star Wars this, Star Wars that.
That’s kind of cute! Are you serious? And then when we were buying our snacks,
That’s kind of cute! Are you serious? And then when we were buying our snacks,
he spilled the popcorn on the counter and dropped his soda on some kid’s head.
he spilled the popcorn on the counter and dropped his soda on some kid’s head.
I’m sure he was terribly sorry. Maybe you should go out with him instead!
I’m sure he was terribly sorry. Maybe you should go out with him instead!
Great. And erm… that sounded great. And I just want to remind everybody, one of the benefits of doing this kind of practice togather is you can really see how a lot of words can fit into one sentence when we rediuce, when we shrink some of the words, the sounds, and we link them togather. Right? So ‘dropped his soda on some kids head’ right? Or ‘and then when we were buying our snacks’, so I make these raps, not to teach you to rap, but to help you get better feeling and practice with natural rhythm in conversation. So great job, Paul, great job. Everybody out there. Hey! Let’s check out the video one more time, and then remember, you can always go back to watch the English Show again to practice. Here we go.
We went to the cinema last night to see that new Star Wars movie.
Was it any good?
My boyfriend loved it, but it didn’t really move me.
He’s always talking about it, you know.
Star Wars this, Star Wars that.
That’s kind of cute!
Are you serious? And then when we were
buying our snacks, he spilled the popcorn
on the counter and dropped his soda on some kid’s head.
I’m sure he was terribly sorry.
Maybe you should go out with him instead!
Love it! Oh good. I’m glad you liked it. We’ll be back next week on the English Show with another rap, more conversation practice, another game and another guest. That’s right. We’ve got David Deubelbeis. Oooo. Yeah, he’s coming in and he’s going to be talking about how to help us be better independent learners. so lots more good tips. Yeah, and in the meantime, please please join us. Of course subscribe to our channels, and also if you want to keep up to date on what’s happening with the English Show and ask questions that we could put on the show, join the English Show on Facebook. That’s right. I’ll put some deatils below for howyou can follow us. OK. And also, Story Paul, how can people follow you? Oh yeah, tell us. OK guys, yeah. People can follow me on my Facebook page, and also on my YouTube channel, and on my Twitter feed. Excellent. OK. I’ll put the details below everyone. And I think the last thing we have to do is say thank you to Jay! Thanks Jay. Thank you Jay. It’s been my great pleasure and I hope everybody’s enjoyed this program. Absolutely. And bye-bye everyone. Cherrio. Have a good week and stay in touch and we’ll see you next time on the English Show.

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National Fairy Tale Day with JenniferESL

National Fairy Tale Day with JenniferESL

Join us on National Fairy Tale Day and learn the difference between the words ‘story’ and ‘history’ and rap along with Fluency MC to a story about a giant, witch and dragon.

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Improve your listening with podcasts

Improve your listening with podcasts

Join Vicki Hollett and Fluency MC and learn how to listen successfully in English. This week the special guest star is Craig Wealand of the award winning podcast Aprender Ingles con Reza y Craig.  Craig is a materials writer at www.mansioningles.com and a fantastic source of knowledge on how to improve your listening. Learn what a podcast is and how to find them.

The English Show is designed for #ESL English learners, packed with conversation and language practice, games, puzzles, raps and great tips to help you learn faster. Ask questions, get fluent and make friends in the live chat every Sunday. There’s no other show like it.