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Gabriella: Hi, I’m Gabriella.
Gina: And I’m Gina. Useful Phrases for the British Classroom.
Gabriella: Our last lesson was phrases your teacher wouldn’t teach you, and now we’re onto classroom phrases.
Gina: It flows well, doesn’t it? (laughs)
Gabriella: Classroom phrases are important though. Your teacher will probably rely on the same few phrases so knowing them will help your learning.
Gina: Yeah, it means you can concentrate on the actual information being taught instead of trying to understand the instructions.
Gabriella: And one of the first classroom phrases you will hear is “open your textbook and turn to page 118”.
Gina: Or any page number, of course.
Gabriella: If you’re learning from a textbook, you’re bound to hear that several times. Sometimes the teacher won’t actually mention the textbook and may just say “turn to page 118”.
Gina: There are many ways to say the page numbers, aren’t there?
Gabriella: Yeah, you can say them fully like I just did- “one hundred and eighteen”, or you can say the numbers individually – “one, one, eight”.
Gina: You can also mix it up and say “one, eighteen”.
Gabriella: Yeah, those are all fine. The teacher may even mix up the different methods, as there is no correct and incorrect way, so be aware of all them and pay attention.
Gina: The next phrase is “is everyone okay?” and “do you understand?”
Gabriella: These are important phrases as they will be used by the teacher, to check you understand what they are teaching you. Don’t be afraid to say that you don’t understand!
Gina: Language learning often builds upon itself, so if you don’t understand the first step, you won’t understand what follows.
Gabriella: The teacher wants to help you and wants you to understand. Also, if you don’t understand, then it’s highly likely that somebody else in the class won’t either.
Gina: That happens a lot. One person says that they don’t understand, and then suddenly half the class admits they don’t either.
Gabriella: It just takes one person, so make that one person you!
Gina: Good advice!
Gabriella: Here’s an important phrase for classroom teaching – “repeat after me”.
Gina: Ah, yes. In previous lessons we’ve talked about how important it is to practise pronunciation and repeat after native speakers, and hopefully you will get plenty of opportunity to do that in your English class.
Gabriella: And if the teacher asks you to repeat after them, then repeat after them! Take the opportunity and think about what you’re saying, and how you are saying it.
Gina: The key word is “repeat” as you may be asked to repeat after a CD, or somebody else.
Gabriella: Yes, that’s right.
Gina: What’s the next phrase?
Gabriella: “Do you have any questions?”
Gina: This is important in many more situations than just the classroom, I think.
Gabriella: It definitely is. In the classroom, it’s very important because sometimes, even if you fully understand the grammar point or vocab, you can still have questions.
Gina: You may have an example of a grammar point that you want to check, or a use of a vocabulary word.
Gabriella: Teachers love questions. Questions show that their students are paying attention and working hard, and that’s all that teachers want. Never be afraid to ask a question!
Gina: That’s true. Teachers are there to help your learning, so use them!
Gabriella: And our final phrase is actually three that all have similar, but slightly different meanings, so I’ve grouped them together.
Gina: What are they?
Gabriella: “What does this mean?” “How do you say this?” and “Is there another word for this?”
Gina: They are very similar! Let’s start with the easiest, “what does [this] mean?”
Gabriella: In this case, you can substitute “this” for any English word you want.
Gina: For example “What does ecstatic mean?”
Gabriella: Good example. By the way, ecstatic means ‘extremely happy’. This phraseis an easy way of asking to somebody to explain what a specific word means.
Gina: The next sentence was “how do you say [this]”?
Gabriella: In this case, you’d swap “this” for a word in your native language. If your teacher says it, they are using this to check your vocabulary and understanding. But you can also use this sentence to ask your teacher for the English translation of a word.
Gina: And finally was “is there another word for this?”
Gabriella: As we’ve mentioned in previous lessons, English has many vocabulary words.
Gina: We said in another lesson that the dictionary has over 600,000 words but it’s thought that there are actually over a million words.
Gabriella: As a learner, you won’t know all of those words!
Gina: Even as native speakers, we don’t know all of those words!
Gabriella: True! But a lot of these words have similar meanings. So, if there is a word that you don’t know, maybe there is a similar word that you do know.
Gina: “Is there another word for “ecstatic”?
Gabriella: There is - as we said, it means that you extremely happy.
Gina: Ah, I see. It’s a good way of checking vocabulary words while speaking only in English.
Gabriella: Yeah, it’s a good sentence to remember with English speakers, and your teacher may use this to try and get you to think about similar words as well as to understand new vocabulary.
Gina: It’s a good technique, I think.
Gabriella: I think so too.


Gina: Ok, everyone. I think that’s all for this lesson.
Gabriella: Thank you for listening everyone. See you next time!