Monday, October 22, 2012

20 Weird English Words

Well this is my first thread ever  I just want to share something I found earlier on the internet 

So here goes...

1. Erinaceous: Like a hedgehog

2. Lamprophony: Loudness and clarity of voice

3. Depone: To testify under oath

4. Finnimbrun: A trinket or knick-knack

5. Floccinaucinihilipilification: Estimation that something is valueless. Proper pronunciation based on Latin roots: flockə-nowsə-nəkələ-pələ-fək-ation.

6. Inaniloquent: Pertaining to idle talk

7. Limerance: An attempt at a scientific study into the nature of romantic love.

8. Mesonoxian: Pertaining to midnight

9. Mungo: A dumpster diver – one who extracts valuable things from trash

10. Nihilarian: A person who deals with things lacking importance (pronounce the ‘h’ like a ‘k’).

11. Nudiustertian: The day before yesterday

12. Phenakism: Deception or trickery

13. Pronk: A weak or foolish person

14. Pulveratricious:Covered with dust

15. Rastaquouere: A social climber

16. Scopperloit: Rude or rough play

17. Selcouth: Unfamiliar, rare, strange, marvelous, wonderful. For example: The List Universe is such a selcouth website!

18. Tyrotoxism: To be poisoned by cheese

19. Widdiful: Someone who deserves to be hanged

20. Zabernism: The abuse of military power or authority. I wonder how long it will take for this one to show up in the comments.


Sunday, October 21, 2012

Guide to Writing English

General Information on Writing English Texts

The ideal English text is easy to read and understand. Even scientific texts are usually written in plain English words. So try to keep your sentences plain, clear and well structured.

When writing in English, keep the following rules in mind:
a. use simple language
b. keep subordinate clauses short
c. prefer verbs to nouns (not: The meaning of this is that …, but: This means that …)
d. avoid slang and techy language

Make your texts interesting by using various types of clauses, e.g.:

a. participle clauses
b. relative clauses
c. conditional sentences
d. infinitive constructions, introductory clauses with infinitive or gerund
e. prepositional clauses
f. passive voice

Note, however:

a. Always use main clauses for important statements – use subordinate clauses only for additional information
b. Use passive voice sparingly – prefer active voice.
c. Avoid long introductory clauses – always try to put the subject close to the beginning of a sentence.
d. Avoid long subordinate clauses – a subordinate clause in the middle of a sentence should have no more than 12 syllables

Check out the use of participles in our grammar section. They are very useful for shortening lengthy subordinate clauses.

As to paragraphs, keep the following rules in mind:
a. Concentrate on one main point per paragraph. Summarize this point in the first sentence.
b. All sentences that follow support the main point or limit its scope.
c. The last sentence is used as a transition to the next paragraph. Use a criteria that applies for both paragraphs.

The typical structure of a text is as follows:
a. (title)
b. introduction
c. main part
d. conclusion

Make your texts interesting. You can achieve this for example by varying the lengths of your sentences. An important statement is best emphasised in a short sentence, especially if that sentence is between two longer sentences. Do also vary the lenghts of your paragraphs and avoid one-sentence paragraphs.
There are various possibilities on how to structure your texts, e.g.:

a. General to Specific
general statement followed by details and examples
b. Specific to General
details and examples followed by a generalization
c. Known to Unknown
provide new information based on what readers already know
d. Least Important to Most Important
catch and keep readers' attention
e. Chronology (ordering by time)
e.g. in biographies


ayo belajar bahasa inggris

How To Get The Best TOEFL Score

To begin with, I’d like to provide you a few simple tips, which I hope can make you ready and ‘armed’ enough before going to the ‘battlefield’. You might need to know that some are based on my own experience and the rest is based on some reliable sources that I rephrase. What you’re about to read is a brief explanation which I chopped into 4 parts. Thus, if you plan to take an institutional test, section 1, 2, 3, and 4 are hopefully giving you some clues about what to prepare. Those who want to take a TOEFL prediction test, however, could read section 1, 2, and 3 but reading the 4th isn’t prohibited at all. It is in fact advisable. Let’s not waste another space by rambling on irrelevant stuffs and here are the tips. (Drum roll again, please…Thanks.)

SECTION 1 (Listening Comprehension)

Have a chat : Speaking with your Indonesian friends might help but not much. Nothing is better than having a warm chat with a real native speaker (American, British, or Australian).

Watch TV series or movies : While you’re watching hotties and studs in action, don’t forget to listen to every word they speak. It’s even better if you could rent a DVD so you can rewind the missing or unclear words and try to pick a DVD with English subtitles. Believe me, it does work, at least for me.

Listen to the radio/ songs : This advice sounds classic but listening Dalton Tanonaka and Frida Lidwina reading news on Indonesia Now seems to boost my listening perfomance. In spite of his Japanese root, Dalton’s pronunciation quite resembles American’s. Frida is equally fluent but her pronunciation is a bit interfered with the Indonesian accent. No offense, miss anchor! But for Indonesian, her English is awesomely cool.

Fully concentrate on the tape : Never waste your time to check on the previous numbers. The tape is only played once so every second matters. Once you don’t know the answer, immediately skip it or make a wild guess (crossing a, b, c, or d while praying by heart and crossing your fingers). Cheating or asking the right answer to your neighbors will only distract you from the test and you’ll be doomed.

Come earlier : Learning from my bitter experience, try to come as early as you can especially when you’re taking the test with many others. Coming early also gives an advantage. You’ve got much time to survey whether the test room is equipped with headphones or not, which seat seems the most comfortable for you. After all, coming early always makes you psychologically calmer.

Take the front seat : Where you’re sitting is particularly crucial when no hearing aid like earphones is provided and your ears must solely rely on a loud speaker or a tape player positioned in front of the room.

SECTION 2 (Structure and Written Expressions)

Learn intensively about clauses and phrases : In this section the questions are mainly concerned with clause, phrase, conjunction, and marker. Sounds too difficult to chew on? If you’re quite savvy at surfing the Internet, try to google and you’ll have some search results useful enough to enrich your grammar knowledge. Use the above topics as keywords, decide which result is worth saving, save the webpages on your PC and read them over and over again till you literally drop.

Learn more about identifying a good and sensible structure : In this part, we are to choose the WRONG part of the sentence, instead of the right. You therefore have to know well the basic concepts of a good and sensible structure. This is what I usually do; I read thoroughly the sentences, then I roughly translate them into Indonesian and if they sound logical and structurally accepted, I’ll proceed to the subsequent question. It’s about combining your linguistic instinct and logic. I’d say, combining these two is the hardest part but eventually we’ll learn that this is the most intriguing one, too. Language consists of regularity and irregularity. Regularity is well taken care of by our left brain and irregularity is nicely handled by our taste, instinct, feelings, heart, whatever we call it.

SECTION 3 (Vocabulary and Reading Comprehension)

Read newspapers and magazines : Read the Jakarta Post online or regularly visit sites of foreign newspapers like Washington Post or New York Times. If you have an internet-enabled cell phone, you can subscribe to their feeds in your Opera Mini so you ‘re able to read the latest news they publish. Subscribing to printed version of newspapers monthly spends too much money and nowadays internet access is more affordable than printed media. Keeping newspapers can at times be a source of problems too since we need space to store them all.

Read fast (skim) and find main ideas : By getting familiar with reading newspapers or magazines, you’re also improving your skimming skills as we are gradually used to read fast and extract the main points of the text rapidly, too.

Learn how to paraphrase : ‘Paraphrase’ means ‘express the same message in different words’. In the multiple choices, you are expected to find an option (either a, b, c ,or d) that contains exactly similar meaning with the ideas already stated in the passage.

SECTION 4 (Test of Written English)

Write in an organized way : Write anything in your mind in English (you can write an English diary or English blog) and afterwards step by step you can fix the wrong use of punctuations, misspelling, grammatical errors, and so forth. Ask your pals (who you reckon to be more competent than yourself) to read your composition and correct the errors, if there’s any found. Next, try to make your writing more organized by learning some writing basics. Complicated as it may seem but persevere folks are bound to succeed.

Read a lot : The last but definitely not the least, unless you’re a pure genius, you can’t write a word if you don’t read first. Reading supplies us with plenty, myriad ideas to write.With unlimited number of ideas in mind, everyone never gets stuck when they’re writing.

One last word to wrap this up, some of the tips are directly cited from Ronald E. Feare’s Key to Success on the TOEFL.

DISCLAIMER: I can’t 100% guarantee that things are always going smoothly. So please, don’t entirely blame your failure on me in case you fail reaching the targeted result on test even though you’ve already practiced the entire tips I’ve elaborated above perfectly. I am neither an expert nor an English native speaker. Regardless, luck does play a key role in the final result. Cheers!

What’s The essence of English Literature?

If you want to know the essence of English literature you may download this pdf file:

The 10 Secrets to Speaking English

1. Self-Esteem

The most important aspect of speaking is having good self-esteem. Self-esteem is how a person feels about himself. This includes “self-talk”, how a person thinks or what a person says to himself. What a person feels determines what he thinks, and what he thinks determines what he says and how he says it. A person who feels good about himself will say good things and speak well. A person who feels bad about himself will think negative thoughts and not have self-confidence. Then fear will cause a person to not speak. When most Chinese people are asked how their English is, or if they are told their English is very good, they immediately respond by saying, “Oh, my English is very poor. I have no chance to practice.” A student of English should not say this to himself or to others. A person who says it often enough will begin to believe it and soon will be paralyzed and unable to speak. Students will begin to forget what they know since the right brain cannot speak or use the knowledge stored in the left brain. A person learning to speak English must put the Chinese custom of modesty (saving face) aside. When complimented, the correct response is “Thank you.” When asked, “How is your English?” or criticized, a good answer is “I love to speak English,” or “My English is improving,” or “I am working very hard to improve my English.” These positive statements will reinforce positive thoughts and good feelings. With increased confidence a person will overcome fear and speak more freely. The mind is the most fantastic computer in the universe. Saying or thinking negative thoughts will short circuit the mind or give it deadly viruses.

2. Teaching Others

It is a known fact that the teacher learns more than the student. One receives more when one gives. When a person only receives, he becomes crippled and soon dies. First of all, a person who teaches someone else to speak English forgets his inhibitions and concentrates on helping. This is a key process in learning. The teacher actually receives more than he gives. The teacher becomes better at speaking when he gives others instructions and encouragement. Secondly, the person who speaks is forced to utilize all the skills of speaking well. The brain is forced to remember what is stored in the left brain, transfer it to the right side, translate it from Chinese into English, and then verbalize it. A teacher must speak to teach. The teacher hears himself speak and recognizes needs and self corrects while teaching, correcting and encouraging the student(s). It’s a great method and a self-motivating process. For thousands of years, this method has been a powerful secret to learning. Remember that teaching others stimulates improvement.

3. Singing Songs

Singing songs has magic that no other exercise can duplicate. A person who sings English songs over and over again will automatically memorize words and phrases. When someone says, “Let’s sing ‘Jingle Bells’ or ‘Happy Birthday’, immediately a person begins to sing the song exactly right without even thinking about it. There is no hesitation, no translation, no confusion. Also, singing allows for the practice of saying words and, at the same time, practices pronunciation because singers verbalize each word more slowly and exactly with the music. That’s what music does for a person who wants to speak English. Good songs with good words are a great aid to speaking fluently. It is amazing how quickly singing helps a person to speak. Finally, the Chinese language has many tones and in a way the language is sung. When songs are sung in English, the brain can quickly connect the thoughts and meaning with sound.

4. Talking to the TV & Radio

There are English speaking television and radio channels. Watching and listening to them is important, but talking to them is even more important. This may seem strange to family and friends, but it is almost as effective as having a native speaker present. Listening is a great way to learn, but speaking back and asking questions benefits the mind and speaking mechanism as if a real person were there. True, the TV and radio will not answer questions nor pause for comments. Nevertheless, a person’s listening skills will improve and his ability to ask good questions and give good answers will also improve. This is a good method. This method will require concentration since people habitually just “listen” to the radio and TV. Listening is good, but speaking is better. It makes all the difference.

5. Reading Aloud and Reading A Lot

Good teachers always emphasize the value of extensive reading. It’s through reading many stories and books that one absorbs the culture, meaning, and beauty of a language. So the student must Read! Read! Read! But in addition to just reading, students should read out loud. Little children learn to speak by listening to their mothers read to them. Mothers learn to read and speak better by reading and speaking to their children. Together, both the reader and listener learn to tell stories, adding drama and emphasis to words and expressions. It’s important to read to others whenever possible. If there is no one to read to, students can read to themselves. It’s important to read aloud a lot!

6. Calling Others on the Telephone

This is one of the most common and most helpful methods of improving spoken English. First, language students must identify others who are willing to speak to them in English on the telephone. These can be friends, classmates, workmates or family members. Students can either make surprise calls or make appointments to speak with a number of people every day. At first, conversations may only last a few minutes, but with practice, time spent speaking will increase. The value comes in developing the ability to hear and understand the other unseen person. Repeating parts of the conversation and asking the other person to repeat parts of the conversation might prove useful. Soon the ear will become accustomed and the speech will also improve allowing both parties to better understand each other. This can be a fun and very useful practice that exercises the brain, ears and tongue.

7. Group Participation

A student in a formal English class at a school, university, or training company must participate. It is vital to ask questions, offer opinions and actively contribute to the class’s speaking activities. It’s only the active participant whose mind and mouth work together to speak and improve speaking. The left brain of a passive spectator will record what is seen and heard while the right brain weakens and speaking difficulty increases. Also, a person cannot participate unless he attends. Active, dedicated members of a class practice many of the skills necessary to increase verbal speech.

8. Interpreting for Others

Interpreting is one of the strongest methods of exercising the whole brain to improve speaking ability. Interpreters must draw on their left brain reserves while exercising their right brain skills. It is similar to teaching others, but even more powerful because the person interpreting must hear in Chinese, mentally understand and translate information in the mind, then almost instantly verbalizes these ideas correctly in English. The more advanced the English speaking ability, the better the interpretation. It is important to begin very early to interpret, not waiting for proficiency in speaking. Interpreting is not translating written documents which are mostly a left-brain skill.

9. Memorizing New Words and Phrases

In order to progress in learning to speak English, new words must be added to the vocabulary. Always having a small list of words and using them in every day conversation is vital to mastery. Speaking new words in sentences will bring ownership. Doing this faithfully over a period of a few years will build a vocabulary as large as most native English speakers. More effective than just adding new words is adding entire sentences. Great progress comes when quotes and phrases are not just memorized but used in daily speech. The key is to Speak! Speak! Speak!

10. Read, Write, and Memorize Poetry

“Words do not convey meaning, they call it forth.” David O McKay. Like music, poetry enlightens the soul while it exercises the mind in rhythm and vivid imagery. By reading, writing and memorizing poetry, a person is exercising one of the highest forms of spoken English. It energizes both the left and right brain while it conditions thinking and trains the tongue.

7 Tips for Speaking English Fluently

RULE 1: Always Study and Review Phrases, Not Individual Words

Never study a single, individual word. Never. When you find a new word, always write down The Phrase it is in. Always.

When you review, always review all of the phrase,.. not the word.
Collect phrases.
Your speaking and grammar will improve 4-5 times faster. Always write the
complete phrase.

Never again study a single word. Never write a single word in your notebook,
Learn Phrases Only.Phrases are GROUPS of words that naturally go together.

**RULE 2: Don't Study Grammar

Stop studying grammar.
Stop studying grammar.

Right now. Stop. Put away your grammar books and textbooks. Grammar rules
teach you to think about English, you want to speak automatically-- without

So Rule 2 is: Don't Study Grammar!

**RULE 3: The Most Important Rule-- Listen First

What is the rule that Humberto found? Simple. The rule is listening.

Listening, listening, listening.

You must listen to UNDERSTANDABLE English. You must listen to English EVERYDAY. Don't read textbooks. Listen to English.

Its simple. That is the key to your English success. Stop reading textbooks.

Start listening everyday.

**Learn With Your Ears, Not Your Eyes

In most schools, you learn English with your eyes. You read textbooks. You
study grammar rules.

Spend most of your study time listening- that is the key to great speaking.

**RULE 4: Slow, Deep Learning Is Best

The secret to speaking easily is to learn every word & phrase DEEPLY. Its not enough to know a definition. Its not enough to remember for a test.

You must put the word deep into your brain.
To speak English easily, you must repeat each lesson many times.

You must learn English deeply.

Learn deeply, speak easily.
Learn deeply, speak easily.

How do you learn deeply? Easy-- just repeat all lessons or listening many times. For example, if you have an audio book, listen to the first chapter 30 times before you go to the second chapter. You could listen to the first chapter 3 times each day, for 10 days.

**RULE 5: Use Point Of View Mini-Stories

I call these stories "Point Of View Mini-Stories". They are the most powerful
way to learn and use English grammar automatically.

Use Point of View Stories for Automatic Grammar
Use Point of View Stories for Automatic Grammar

You must learn grammar by listening to real English. The best way is to listen to the same story... told in different times (points of view): Past, Perfect, Present, Future.

How do you do this? Easy! Find a story or article in the present tense.

Then ask your native speaker tutor to write it again in the Past, with Perfect
tenses, and in the Future. Finally, ask him to read and record these stories
for you.

Then you can listen to stories with many different kinds of grammar. You
don't need to know the grammar rules. Just listen to the Point of View stories and you will improve grammar automatically!

**RULE 6: Only Use Real English Lessons & Materials

You learn real English if you want to understand native speakers and speak easily. Use real magazines, audio articles, TV shows, movies, radio talk shows, and audio books.

Learn Real English, Not Textbook English
Learn Real English, Not Textbook English

To learn real English, you must listen to English that native speakers listen to. You must watch what they watch. You must read what they read.

Listen only to real English
Listen only to real English
Listen only to real English

How do you learn Real English? It's easy. Stop using textbooks. Instead, listen only to real English movies, TV shows, audio books, audio articles, stories, and talk radio shows. Use real English materials.

**RULE 7: Listen and Answer, not Listen and Repeat

Use Listen & Answer Mini-Story Lessons
Use Listen & Answer Mini-Story Lessons

In each Mini-Story Lesson, a speaker tells a short simple story. He also asks
a lot of easy questions. Every time you hear a question, you pause and
answer it.

You learn to answer questions quickly-- without thinking. Your English
becomes automatic.

How can you use Listen & Answer Stories? Easy! Find a native speaker tutor.

Ask him to use this method: Ask him to tell a story... and to constantly ask
you easy questions about it. This will teach you to think quickly in English!

You can also find Listen & Answer lessons. They will teach you to think quickly in English.