I have to pay more?!

Posted on Posted in ESL tips

  If you go to a restaurant and order a $20 steak, you might have to pay $25. This is not only because of taxes but also because of tips.   In the United States we do a lot of tipping. Tipping is a way of offering gratuity to the people who work hard for […]

26 ways to say ‘hello’ in English

Posted on Posted in ESL tips, IIC Students

As you have probably experienced during your time in the Bay Area, Americans have many ways of saying “Hello!” Below, I have categorized the many ways Americans greet each other into four sections: formal, informal, very informal, and how to greet someone whom you haven’t seen in a long time. Formal Greetings: Hello! or Hello ___(name)___! […]

Halloween 101

Posted on Posted in ESL tips, IIC Students

Welcome to Halloween in the states! It is a pretty unique holiday filled with spooky festivities, costumes, candy and more. So how should you prepare for such a day? Here are some tips! Costumes A good costume is key for Halloween. Your costume can be anything, really. It’s a great opportunity to get creative and crazy. […]

Play it by Ear

Posted on Posted in ESL tips, Word Play

I’m not sure how long I’ll stay at the concert. I’ll play it by ear. To “play it by ear” is an idiom that we use when we make decisions based on how a situation progresses. In the example above, the person doesn’t know how long he will stay at the concert. Depending on how the […]

Word of the week

Posted on Posted in ESL tips, IIC Students

To be stoked This is a US slang word, which is an adjective that means to be really enthusiastic, excited or exhilarated about something. To be stoked means there is no limit to what you can do. Example: She was stoked to get the job. Check out this funny video about getting stoked: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=QgXObaM9i2Q

Word of the week

Posted on Posted in ESL tips, IIC Students

Flabbergasted This is the adjective form of the verb to flabbergast, which means to be appalled, overcome with amazement, shock or bewilderment. Example: I was flabbergasted by Miley Cyrus’s twerking performance at the MTV music awards. It was totally outrageous- what do you think? When you see someone who is flabbergasted about something, it can […]

Word of the week

Posted on Posted in ESL tips, IIC Students

To have or get itchy feet This word has nothing to do with a medical condition. It means to have a strong or irresistible impulse to travel. For example: I had been living in San Francisco for 5 years when I got itchy feet and I moved to Barcelona for a year. What does itchy […]