Are you feeling under the weather?
Are you a night owl?
Do you have a bucket list?
Those are examples of idioms.
(Idioms are one of our favorite aspects of English!)
But they can be challenging to master. They are not a piece of cake!
What is an idiom?According to the Merriam Webster dictionary, it is:
- "an expression that cannot be understood from the meanings of its separate words but that has a separate meaning of its own"
- "a form of a language that is spoken in a particular area and that uses some of its own words, grammar, and pronunciations"
The more sophisticated Oxford dictionary definition is:
- "a group of words established by usage as having a meaning not deducible from those of the individual words (e.g., rain cats and dogs, see the light)."
What are some other examples of American English idioms?
- Here is a cute animated video discussing some common idioms
- And here is another animated video on idioms from "Learn English"
- This is a video lesson that focuses on workplace idioms and slang
- Rachel's English has some helpful videos, too- with a special focus on pronunciation:
- Check out this yourdictionary list for some simple definitions of some common idioms
- And this list from ESL Mania
- And here is a short reading on the importance of learning idioms...along with another list
Where can you find the meaning of idioms that you hear?
- If you can't find your idioms on the above lists, you can try this idiom dictionary (just enter your idiom in the search bar)
- And there is an APP for that, too!
Are you ready to practice?
- Try this one from English Media Lab
- Here are TONS OF practice quizzes with idioms, phrasal verbs, and slang (a4esl)
- English Club also has lots of practice quizzes
- Here is one more from English-test.net