Jul 052019
performance review

Performance reviews are a great context for looking at the present perfect. In our latest video English lesson we look at how to form it and when use it.

We go through the three uses of the present perfect:
1. Unfinished actions that started in the past and are still continuing
2. Life experiences that happened at an indefinite time
3. Past actions that are important now because they are news or because their results matter in the present.

But best of all we show it in action in a comedy sketch. This story is great for business English students.

 Posted by at 7:10 pm
Nov 032017

English learners sometimes stumble over these words: Economy, Economize, Economic, Economical, Economist, Economics.
What’s tricky? Well, there are several things.
The words stress moves about so pronunciation can be a challenge. Economic and financial are false friends in some languages and there are two different aspects of meaning going on – money, and saving money.
So are they worth putting time into? Oh yes. English learners are going to hear them in the news and they’re really useful for business English students. Click here to see a video we’ve made to help.

 Posted by at 8:48 pm
Apr 282017

Are you preparing for an English job interview? Then this video is for you! It’s an English Show where we look at common interview questions and how to answer them. Joining us is ‎Shanthi Cumaraswamy Streat‎, business English teacher, author and creator of the terrific English with a Twist blog.

The English Show is designed for #ESL English learners, packed with conversation and language practice, games, raps and great tips to help you learn faster.

 Posted by at 9:47 pm
Sep 132016

checking in at an airportI’m just back from Europe where I spent a good deal of time in airports and saw airline personnel and travellers struggling through the check in process. It can be a daunting procedure if your English is only elementary, but hopefully this video will help learners understand and know what to expect.

It was made with our dear friend Rachel of Rachel’s English. She has the best channel on the YouTube for improving your English pronunciation and you can subscribe to it here.

Here’s her video where she analyses our pronunciation.

Our video is also available with a full transcript on our website here.

 Posted by at 3:47 pm
Aug 272016

Avoid and prevent are handy verbs but there are a couple of mistakes students often make with them.

First, they often get the structures wrong and try to follow them with an infinitive. Both verbs are followed by nouns or gerunds.

And second, there’s a slight difference in meaning that they’re not always aware of. This video is designed to help them use both words correctly.

 Posted by at 9:15 am
Jul 042016

Tag is a kids game where one person is ‘it’ and they chase after and try to catch the other players, but it’s not easy because the other players are all running away. And that’s how telephone tag gets its name. It describes those situations where people try to communicate by telephone but continually miss each other.

Telephone tag is a great context for teaching English for voicemails. Check out our latest collaboration video and subscribe to the teachers who helped make it so you don’t miss out on their future lessons.

JenniferESL, Gabby of Go Natural English, Minoo of Anglo Link, and Fluency MC (Jason Levine).

Make sure you subscribe to everyone’s channels:

YouTube: www.youtube.com/jenniferesl
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/englishwithjenniferlebedev/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/JLebedev_ESL
Website: http://www.englishwithjennifer.com/
Blog for teachers: https://englishwithjennifer.wordpress.com/

YouTube channel: http://youtube.com/gonaturalenglish
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/GoNaturalEnglish
Twitter: http://twitter.com/gonaturaleng
Mailing List Sign up: http://gonaturalenglish.com/7steps
Website: http://gonaturalenglish.com

Jase (Fluency MC)
YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/collolearn
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/FluencyMC
Twitter: https://twitter.com/fluencymc
Mailing List Sign up: http://fluencymc.com/starter-course/
Website: http://fluencymc.com

YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/MinooAngloLink
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/AngloLink
Twitter: https://twitter.com/AngloLink
Website: http://www.anglo-link.com/

Follow me on twitter as @VickiVideos so you don’t miss out on future videos and don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel too:
YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/vickihollettvideo
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/SimpleEnglishVideos/
Twitter: @vickivideos @vickihollett
Mailing List Sign up: https://www.simpleenglishvideos.com/subscribe/
Website: http://simpleenglishvideos.com http://www.vickihollett.com

 Posted by at 7:04 am
Jan 292016

I greatly value the work of many ESP authors and researchers and I must write about them elsewhere. But this post is about the very special David Cotton, who has been a leading light in Business ELT for as long as I can remember. Way back before anyone else I can think of, David had the idea that Business English is so much more than job specific vocabulary. For David it’s about people, creativity and ideas – and of course – clear communication.

And I think that’s the great gift David has given ESP – the ability to get countless Business English classes talking and communicating like never before.

When David stumbled across case studies back in the 1970s, it was a light bulb moment for him. And since then, with his help and the many courses he’s written (such as the seminal Market Leader), it’s been a light bulb moment for countless Business English teachers as well. Case studies don’t need to be daunting or complicated texts when David is writing them. Clear, punchy and a stimulating story is his style. David understands what gets minds engaged.

As a Business English writer myself, I admire and value his skills. But I’ve also had the special priviledge of being David’s colleague, travelling companion and friend. Back in the 1990s, when Business English was less well established than it is today, we worked together on a diploma and certificate level training course for Business English teachers at London Guildhall University (now London Metropolitan University). In many ways it was a distraction from our main jobs, and gosh it was hard work. But it was so rewarding. Some fantastic teachers who are now leaders in the business English field took that course, and it gives me (and I know for David too) huge pleasure to count them as my friends today.

But the biggest friend I made on that course was David Cotton himself. We were all trying to forge a new teacher training syllabus and we had to work out what to include or not. David was both a hard working muse and a staunch and loyal friend by our side and I can’t thank him enough for the help, support and fun he gave me.

I’ve made a lot of trips talking about books I’ve written and I’ve discovered my talks are generally so-so on Monday, I’m in the groove by Wednesday, but starting to flake by Friday. Catch me in week two and I’ve probably lost my voice and I’m starting to lose the plot a bit. Having a good friend at your side on long trips is a blessing, and to my mind, there is no better companion for a working tour than David. He’s nursed me through everything, from attacks of laryngitis to family crises, and he’s had me laughing my head off as we’ve struggled through crazy weather, bureaucracy, and intercultural misunderstandings. He’s been an inspiration and I love him with all my heart.

So what’s the latest? Well, David’s just sending his latest book to publishers, but this time it’s a kid’s story. Designed for 7-10 year olds, it’s an adventure book about a fearsome gangster and his team – Sneaky, Slinky, Slimey and Meanie. Will they suceed in driving grandpa and Jake outta town? Ha! As always, he’s got me hooked and I can’t wait to read it. Keep rocking, David!


I’m deeply sorry to report that David died this morning after bravely battling cancer. It was a peaceful death and he was surrounded by his family. Our heart goes out to his wife, son and daughter and his many dear friends.  

 Posted by at 8:30 pm