Word of the Day: mischievous

Everybody knows somebody who’s mischievous. You know, that person who loves to play tricks and and do silly things which often get him or her into trouble.

Being mischievous, however, is not the same as being mean or careless. A mischievous child is often frustrating for his or her parents, but they rarely do anything that really crosses a line.

You can also use this word as an adverb, to describe how someone did something. For example: Ala mischievously slipped some salt into my coffee!

Now you have a go at some example sentences!

Newsletter: week 12

Weekly English Fix

This week: Chocolate Chip and Banana Muffins

Photo by Taylor Grote

By Klaudyna Piatek March 22, 2021

Wonderful news everyone, we are now an official business and have received our temporary SIRET number! And, what better way to celebrate than by baking Chocolate Chip and Banana Muffins this Saturday, March 27th?! Join us for this week’s workshop and delight in the deliciousness of these scrumptious muffins! 

Also, don’t forget that you can now sign your children up for our online English lessons over the Easter holidays. We will play games, learn about music, talk about films and help them find their comfort zone in English. Each lesson is 45 minutes long, for elementary aged children we offer 1 lesson per day; for middle and high school, it is 2 lessons per day, Monday to Friday. 

Don’t miss them! 

THIS WEEK’S

TOP STORIES

Spread the love! 10 scrumptious Marmite recipes, from roast potatoes to spaghetti

Stuart Heritage

https://www.theguardian.com/food/2021/mar/22/10-scrumptious-marmite-recipes-roast-potatoes-spaghetti

Okay, Marmite is really not my thing, but I think that we should all be open to trying new foods and experiencing other cultures. So, have a go! Read about all the different ways that you can prepare Marmite, and who knows, maybe you’re one of the lovers?!


Arrests after 6,000 people gather for illegal ‘carnival’ in Marseille

https://www.thelocal.fr/20210322/arrests-after-6000-people-gather-for-illegal-carnival-in-marseille/

Want to read about French news in English? Try out The Local. Here’s an article to get you started about the recent “carnival” in Marseille! 

THIS WEEK’S

TOP TIPS

Long Term Improvement

I recently saw a post on Facebook advertising Yoga in English. I think that’s a great idea. Pick an activity that you enjoy, and do it in English, or in whatever language you are trying to learn! It’s important to find enjoyment in language learning and it doesn’t really matter how you do it as long as you get to practice enough. 

Vocabulary

I have been learning lots of new words lately by reading books with my young son. Children’s books are great because they’re often written in a very rhythmic way, they rhyme, and we tend to read them aloud! Great practice! 

Grammar Spot

Since I mentioned reading in the vocabulary advice above, I’ll mention it here too. While I was learning French, reading books with lots of dialogue really helped me understand how to use the imparfait and pasé composé tenses. They helped because I could follow the conversation on my own time, and I didn’t have to worry about interrupting the people speaking to ask about a word. Dialogue-rich novels are fabulous! 

GroupEtude SARL

21 AV Jean Giono

13090, Aix en Provence

Friday Idiom: break a leg

Learn an English idiom every Friday with Groupetude!

This idiom is used in theatres; before an actor goes on stage, rather than saying “good luck”, which incidentally is supposed to bring bad luck, you say, “break a leg!”

I have always wondered why we say break a leg… it is a bit strange after all. Its origins, however, are uncertain, so we’ll just have to remember not to say “good luck” to anyone about to perform!

Word of the Day: wary

Word of the day: wary. Improve your English vocabulary with Groupetude!

Well, many of us are wary of a great number of things, particularly in these strange times. I think it’s important to be able to express these worries with the adequate vocabulary!

So here are some more examples of the word “wary” in use:

  • We wary of things that seem to good to be true, they often are!
  • That said, it’s also important not to be wary of everything and everyone, trust is important too.
  • Christine gave him a wary look from across the table.

So there we are, can you think of any other examples?

Word of the Day: belittle

Sometimes the things that we say or do can have a negative effect on others, it’s important to learn those negative words and feelings too.

Some example sentences:

“It is very belittling when you dismiss my job like that.”

“Never belittle a person’s culture.”

“I felt belittled and hurt when I heard her say my work served no purpose.”

Grammar Mondays: adjectives 3

The nice thing about adjectives in English is that they’re not terribly complicated. There are a few rules to remember, but on the whole, there isn’t that much to it.

Let’s look at an example of a descriptive paragraph, all the adjectives are in bold:

The sun’s rays beamed into the large room through the French doors. It illuminated everything, and gave the sparsely decorated office a warm and welcoming glow. The furniture was all made of wood: the chairs were upholstered, red velvet and of polished dark mahogany; the desk, also a dark mahogany, was wide and comfortable, with papers and books scattered all over; and not to forget, the potted plant stood upright on the hardwood floor with its leaves bursting joyfully from its soil, brining in air and life.

a large room.

upholstered chair

red velvet

a wide and comfortable desk

hardwood floor

potted plant

French doors

decorated office

polished dark mahogany

Now, can you try to describe either, the room you are in, or an imaginary room. You don’t need to use terribly complicated language, use the words you are comfortable with. If you’d like to step out of your comfort zone, you can reach for a thesaurus, which is a dictionary where you will find synonyms. You can find this online by typing “thesaurus” into Google. Good luck!

Don’t forget to post your descriptions here!

Friday Idiom: half-baked

In honour of this week’s Brownie Bonanza workshop, let me intrduce today’s idiom: half-baked.

This is when an idea isn’t properly thought through. For example: “He came to us with a half-baked plan and expected us to back him up on it!”

or,

“This half-baked plan is going to get us into a lot of trouble!”

If you haven’t already heard about it, we’re organising a free online baking workshop entirely in English this Saturday, March 13th. To sign up, simply go to the link below and enter your information, we still have a few spots left!

Word of the Day: nauseous

For the American pronunciation: nah-tious.

For the British pronunciation: nah-zee-ous

I figure that this is a pretty useful word to know. After all, everyone feels sick at one point or another, and it may be a good idea to know how to describe your symptoms to a doctor or a friend.

Here are some more examples:

I often feel nauseous in the car, especially if the road twists and turns.

Just watching you eat that is making me nauseous.

Doctor: what are your symptoms?

Patient: I have a headache, a fever, and I feel nauseous.

7 BOOKS FOR YOUNG ENGLISH LEARNERS

Since I’ve already written a post about what to read to your young kids, here’s another about some things you can give your (slightly) older kids.

So here is a list of 7 books that we either have, or that have been recommended to us.

All Right Already, and others by Jory John and Benji Davies.

I like this series, with Bear and Duck because of its simple drawings and witty turn of phrase. They really make for a great introduction to autonomous reading.

I also think these books are really fun for young English learners because the language is still quite simple, while the comic book style illustrations will help your child follow the story without too much trouble. I wouldn’t recommend it for kids who don’t have any notions at all of English, but certainly for those who are exposed to it regularly.

This brings me to my next series.

I Really Like Slop, an Elephant and Piggie book by Mo Willems

Ok, I know, I know, I’ve already put this on a previous list for young children, but these are also fab for early readers. They are funny, and easy to follow, even for children who are still learning English.

There Must be More than That by Shinsuke Yoshitake

This book is a little more difficult for English learners, but you could definitely read it with your middle schooler who has much more English in school. It’s a book that I would absolutely read with my grade 6 and 7 students (6ème and 5ème).

I love it because it’s a realistic but hopeful account of how kids might interpret the information they see and hear in the grown-up world. I love the style of drawings and I love how it creates a world of possibilities for young imaginations.

Tiny Titans by by Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani

This series was recommended to me. I’ve included it on the list because I think comic books and graphic novels can be great introductions for reluctant readers and young English learners. As with the previous book, these ones will be for middle school aged kids who already know the basics of English. Best practice will be to read them with your kids so that they don’t feel like a chore, unless of course you’ve got avid readers!

These next titles are also recommendations from other parents and readers’ circles

Scooby-doo Team Up! By Sholly Fisch

Hilda and the Black Hound by Luke Pearson

Fairy Tale Comics by Chris Duffy

Once again, these could be great introductions to the world of reading in English. They may be for elementary aged children, but the stories, illustrations and the fact that they are graphic novels and comics will take away from the idea that they’re “little kids’ books”.

While my own son is still too young to read these, I’m really looking forward to the day when he’ll begin asking me for more things to read on his own, or with me!

Word of the Day: preposterous

Have you read The Book with No Pictures? It’s a children’s book by B.J. Novak and it’s brilliant. It really has no pictures and is quite hilarious. My son just loves it and rolls around on the floor in stitches (laughing very hard)! Well, the word preposterous is in it, so I thought I’d make it today’s word, because I like the sound of it!

Examples:

What a preposterous thing to say!

It is absolutely preposterous to think that I would do the dishes for you.

What a preposterous idea, I would never sky-dive in a bikini!