Brit it! - Blog o brytyjskiej kulturze i języku Brit it! - Blog o brytyjskiej kulturze i języku Brit it! - Blog o brytyjskiej kulturze i języku


Are You Ready to Get Pumped?

16 lipca 2018, poniedziałek,

I have been going to the gym ever since I was a teenager.  I don’t do it with any intentions of getting huge like Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson but I do enjoy challenging myself and maintaining a relatively good standard of strength. Recently, it occurred to me that there is a certain jargon in the gym that only the initiated will understand. The necessity of a unique lexicon for a particular activity is similar to other hobbies such as fishing or Yoga or professional careers i.e./ law or medicine. Today let’s look at the words and phrases you may hear in the “Iron Paradise” – The Gym!

Published under CC0 Public Domain license. Source: pxhere.com

Czytaj całość »


Stand-Up for your English!

9 lipca 2018, poniedziałek,

English writer J.B. Priestley said, „Comedy, we may say, is society’s way of protecting itself with a smile.” We all love to smile and we all love to laugh. Jokes and the world of comedy have a very large potential to help English language learners perfect their story telling skills, as well as gain new vocabulary and heighten their cultural awareness.

Donovan Strain performing stand-up at Flappers Comedy Club in Burbank, author: Catpiccatpic Published under CC 3.0 licnese. Source: Wikimedia Commons

Czytaj całość »


What Is This Upside-Down ‘e’?

2 lipca 2018, poniedziałek,

ə  – If you’ve ever wondered what this peculiar looking little symbol is, you are probably not alone.  It is a phonetic symbol for the most common vowel sound in English! It is called ‘schwa’ and it is heard EVERYWHERE in English. So even if you didn’t know what it was called or where it is used you are nevertheless using it all the time when you speak English. Let’s have a look at this ubiquitous sound.

© Mat Wright, British Council

Czytaj całość »


Get ready for a Summer Road Trip

25 czerwca 2018, poniedziałek,

The summer is the perfect time for an age old tradition for the young and free – the road trip.  Even young families will load up the family car and go wherever the open road can take them.  „Are we there yet mom?” constantly shouted from the backseat while dad plays his old-timey music and kids play on devices in the backseat.  Whatever the demographic there’s no better time to talk about language connected to vehicles and driving, so let’s get to it.  Quick Tip – We are going to cover a HUGE amount of vocabulary (mostly nouns) in this blog so if you aren’t sure what something is from the brief context provided then just pop the term into Google Images and you’ll get all sorts of pictures.

Published under CC0 Public Domain license. Source: https://pxhere.com

Czytaj całość »


Future tenses review

20 czerwca 2018, środa,

Are you ready for a grammar blog? Today I would like to discuss the very confusing future tenses in English.  Students rely very heavily on the key word ‘WILL’ as if it is the only future tense marker and a one-stop fix-all for all your future needs.  But imagine my students’ shock when I tell them that it is statistically not even close to being the most common future form.  The rules about how and when to use English future forms are extremely murky and a source of confusion for many people who learn English.  So let’s have a quick review of them.

© Mat Wright, British Council

Czytaj całość »


Is that English or not?!?

11 czerwca 2018, poniedziałek,

English is spoken all over the world and this has created a lot of varieties and accents in English. However today I would like to discuss the interesting phenomenon that occurs sometimes when what you are hearing may sound like English words but the words in context seem incoherent and make absolutely no sense to you whatsoever. This can happen as a result of speakers using highly specialized jargon, sophisticated slang and English that has become a pidgin or creole language. I am going to discuss 2 that I have had direct contact with, namely Cockney Rhyming Slang and Sierra Leonean Krio.

Two young men walking down the street © Mat Wright, British Council

Czytaj całość »


Why grammar is so twisted. Subjunctive mood.

4 czerwca 2018, poniedziałek,

I like to freak out my mid-level students by telling them that English is so weird we can even use verbs in the past tense to talk about the future!!  If I had the car tomorrow I could go to your party! This makes students and even English speakers who have never studied English academically really stop and think – why is this happening? How is this possible?  It all comes down to understanding one particular linguistic concept: The Subjunctive Mood.

© Mat Wright, British Council

Czytaj całość »


Some basic facts about the Commonwealth of Nations

28 maja 2018, poniedziałek,

Have you ever wondered why Australia and New Zealand keep a British flag on their countries’ flags or why Queen Elizabeth II appears on Canadian money? Do you wonder what relationship India and South Africa have with Britain in the modern world and why English is so widely spoken around the globe?  Well to understand the long historical ties between these countries one needs to know the long and complicated history of the British Empire.  In modern times the common history of these countries carries on in the friendly relationship maintained through what is known as the Commonwealth of Nations, or formerly, the British Commonwealth, the topic of today’s blog.

Commonwealth Foreign Ministers meeting in London, 18 April 2018. Published under CC BY 2.0 license; source: flickr.com

Czytaj całość »


“We don’t have Coke. Can it be Pepsi?” – English Eponyms

21 maja 2018, poniedziałek,

It happens quite often that a particular company is not satisfied with simply being a market leader.  They want to crush their competition so dramatically that the name of the product itself gets intrinsically tied to the company brand name.  That is to say that the brand name becomes the name of that product universally.  This is called an eponym in linguistics and we’ll be looking at some of the most popular examples from both sides of the pond.

Escalator. Published under CC0 Creative Commons license. Source: pxhere.com

Czytaj całość »