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Lesson Transcript

Beginner Season 1, Lesson 9 - We Study Together Every Week
Daniel: Daniel here.
Chihiro: Chihiro here. Beginner series, season one, lesson nine. We study together every week.
Daniel: Hello everyone. I’m Daniel, and welcome to EnglishClass101.com.
Chihiro: With us, you’ll learn to speak English with fun and effective lessons.
Daniel: We also provide you with cultural insights.
Chihiro: And tips you won’t find in a textbook. In this lesson, you will learn how to talk about habits and general truths.
Daniel: This conversation takes place on the campus of Innovative University (IU).
Chihiro: The conversation is between Oksana, an exchange student from Ukraine, and Naomi, an exchange student from Japan.
Daniel: The speakers are friends, therefore the speakers will be speaking casually.
Chihiro: Before we begin the lesson, we want to ask you if you read the lesson notes while you listen.
Daniel: If you haven’t tried it yet, please do.
Chihiro: We'd love to hear if it helps you.
Daniel: So, please leave us a comment on the website.
Chihiro: Let’s listen to the conversation.
Oksana: Oh, hi Naomi! What's up?
Naomi: Not much. How's it going, Oksana?
Oksana: Pretty good. Do you have class now?
Naomi: Yup. I have Calculus. It's a hard subject.
Oksana: Calculus? Oh, are Mike and Yuki in your class?
Naomi: Yes, we study together every week.
Oksana: Speaking of studying, do you have plans tonight?
Naomi: Actually, yes. I have a date tonight. We're going to see a new movie, "Attraction."
Oksana: "Attraction?"
Naomi: Yeah, my date is an Italian student. His name is Marco.
Oksana: Marco?!!!
Naomi: Oh, here he comes now.
Oksana: Wow! He IS handsome!
Naomi: Tell me about it!
Daniel: So, Chihiro, what do you think of Marco?
Chihiro: Sounds like a cute guy!
Daniel: Cute, mmm but maybe not so reliable.
Chihiro: Yeah, perhaps not.
Daniel: Ok, In the dialogue, Naomi says that she and Marco are going to the movies.
Chihiro: Right, going to the movies is a common pastime for many North Americans, especially among college students. It's an easy, affordable and accessible form of entertainment that can be enjoyed with friends and dates.
Daniel: Right, and movie theaters have food and drinks so the viewers can enjoy their show while they snack.
Chihiro: Yup. Popcorn is one of the most common food that is sold, and is usually accompanied with a soda.
Daniel: Mmm…I love fresh popcorn. How about you?
Chihiro: With extra butter is my favorite! Also, friends can get together and rent a movie to watch in somebody's living room instead of going to the theaters. These days, with great home entertainment systems, it can be just as enjoyable as going to the theaters. And of course, there's always microwave popcorn!
Daniel: Ahh yes, I agree. I usually don't have time to go to the theater. Do you?
Chihiro: Not as much as before unfortunately, but I do try to squeeze one in now and again.
Chihiro: Let's take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
The first word we shall see is:
Daniel: What's up? [natural native speed]
Chihiro: informal for - How are you?
Daniel: What's up? [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Daniel: What's up? [natural native speed]
How's it going? [natural native speed]
Chihiro: a question to ask about someone's health or situation
How's it going? [slowly - broken down by syllable] How's it going? [natural native speed]
Daniel: pretty good [natural native speed]
Chihiro: phrase to show that you are fairly healthy and your situation is good
Daniel: pretty good [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Daniel: pretty good [natural native speed]
calculus [natural native speed]
Chihiro: advanced type of mathematics
calculus [slowly - broken down by syllable] calculus [natural native speed]
Daniel: hard [natural native speed]
Chihiro: difficult, not easy
Daniel: hard [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Daniel: hard [natural native speed]
actually [natural native speed]
Chihiro: as a true fact, really
actually [slowly - broken down by syllable] actually [natural native speed]
Daniel: date [natural native speed]
Chihiro: romantic activity with a person, person to do romantic activities with
Daniel: date [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Daniel: date [natural native speed]
handsome [natural native speed]
Chihiro: good to look at
handsome [slowly - broken down by syllable] handsome [natural native speed]
Daniel: subject [natural native speed]
Chihiro: field of study taught at school
Daniel: subject [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Daniel: subject [natural native speed]
Italian [natural native speed]
Chihiro: person born and raised in Italy
Italian [slowly - broken down by syllable] Italian [natural native speed]
Chihiro: Let’s have a closer look at the usage of some of the words and phrases for this lesson.
Daniel: The first phrase we’ll look at is 'speaking of'. This is used when a person is reminded of something else to talk about from the current topic being talked about.
Chihiro: People use it at the beginning of a sentence to show that they want to change the course of the conversation because they've thought of something else to say.
Daniel: In the dialogue, Oksana uses the phrase because their talk about studying made her think about what Naomi is going to do that evening.
Chihiro: Therefore she asks her using the phrase "speaking of" to show that their talk about studying made her wonder what her friend will be doing later that evening.
Daniel: OK. What is the next phrase?
Chihiro: The next phrase we'll be looking at is 'he IS handsome'. This is a grammatically standard present tense phrase, however, when said with a stress on the verb, the person is emphasizing their strong agreement.
Daniel: Right. In this case Oksana stresses IS because she wants to express her agreement on Naomi's opinion of how handsome Marco is.
Chihiro: Sounds great!
Daniel: So Chihiro, how about another example?
Chihiro: Ok, if I say something like, mmm this is pretty good
Daniel: This IS good!
Chihiro: Then I would know that you agree with me.
Daniel: Exactly.
Chihiro: Sounds great.

Lesson focus

Daniel: Now let's take a look at the grammar point for this lesson.
Daniel: The focus of this lesson is the simple present
Chihiro: For example, in the the dialogue we heard the sentence, “My date is an Italian student."
Daniel: In Beginner Series, Season 1, Lessons 6 through 8, we learned about 3 of the 4 aspects of verbs (simple, progressive, and passive). We also saw some examples of how these aspects are combined with the 3 verb tenses (present, past, and future). In the next several lessons, we will look at these combinations in more detail, and learn the core meanings of the verb tenses as we did the aspects.
Chihiro: In this lesson, we focus on the combination of the simple aspect and the present tense. This combination is usually called the simple present tense.
Daniel: In Lesson 6 we explained that the simple aspect’s core meaning is "unchanging". That is, the event we are talking about is thought of as a complete whole and not an event that we expect to change.
Chihiro: Right. And in that lesson, we had our first look at the simple present. At that time, we explained that we use the present tense to talk about now.
Daniel: In this lesson, we can be a little more specific. So, the present tense is used to talk about what is immediate, or now, from the speaker’s point of view. And to that we also add the idea, that the speaker is communicating facts.
Chihiro: So, in other words, the present tense is used to talk about immediate facts.
Daniel: Right. And the simple aspect is used to talk about what is unchanging. When we bring them together, we can see that the simple present is used to talk about facts that are thought of as complete.
Chihiro: Shall we look at some examples?
Daniel: Good idea, but first let's take a look at its formation. With almost any subject, the simple present is made by using the dictionary form of the word. Chihiro, what's the main exception?
Chihiro: The exception is when the subject is the third person singular.
Daniel: And what is the third person singular?
Chihiro: The third person singular is one person or object other than you or I. Examples are he, she, it, the dog, et cetera, et cetera.
Daniel: With most verbs, we simply add ~s to the end of the dictionary form of the word. For example, let’s use the verb "stop". If the subject is not in the 3rd person singular, "stop" does not change its form.
Chihiro: For example - "I stop, you stop, we stop."
Daniel: What about the 3rd person singular?
Chihiro: Those would be "he stops, she stops, it stops, or even the dog stops."
Daniel: Now, there are some verbs that are a little more difficult. For example, verbs that end in ~s, ~sh, ~x, or ~ch, the spelling rule is a little different. We do not simply add and ~s. We add ~es.
Chihiro: But, the good news is, the pronunciation is simply adding an ~s sound. So, a verb such as “catch” is spelled “catches”. In a similar way, verbs that end in a ~y with a consonant before it (such as ~by, ~dy, ~fy) change by dropping the ~y and adding ~ies.
Daniel: But, again, good news, the pronunciation rule is the same, just add the ~s sound. The other exceptions are "go", which is spelled "goes", "do", which is spelled "does" but "do" changes the pronunciation to "does" and there is also "have", which changes to "has".
Chihiro: One more exception is the verb "to be", which changes for more than just the 3rd person singular. For examples of that, please see the lesson notes for Beginner Season 1, Lesson 4.
Daniel: Now let’s take a look at how the simple present tense was used in this lesson. What is our first example?
Chihiro: In the dialogue, Oksana asked Naomi if Mike and Yuki are in her class. And she responded by saying, "Yes, we study together every week."
Daniel: "We" is the 1st person plural, so we don’t change the form of the verb study. And she is talking about a habit. So we use the simple present to talk about habits, which are facts that are immediately true and unchanging. What is our next example?
Chihiro: Another example from the dialogue is when Oksana asks Naomi if she has any plans. Naomi answers, “I have a date tonight.”
Daniel: "I" is the 1st person singular, so we don’t change the form of the verb have. And, she is talking about a future scheduled event. Even though the event is in the future, the plan exists now and is not expected to change. So, we can use the simple present tense to talk about the future scheduled events that we don’t expect to change. And what is our next example?
Chihiro: Another example from the dialogue is when Naomi describes her date. She says, “Yeah, my date is an Italian student.”
Daniel: So the subject “my date” is the 3rd person singular, and for the verb “be,” the 3rd person singular is “is”, as we explained in lesson 4. She is talking about a state, the state that her date is Italian and a student. These facts are not expected to change, so she uses the simple present tense to talk about states. Any more examples?
Chihiro: Yes. We have one more example from the dialogue. Naomi sees Marco coming, and she says, "Oh, here he comes now".
Daniel: OK so in this sentence, “he” is the 3rd person singular, so we add an ~s to come and say, “he comes.” Naomi is describing an action as it happens before her and Oksana. So when we describe actions in this way, we can use the simple present tense instead of the present progressive. If we use the present progressive and say “he is coming now”, we understand that the action is incomplete and happening now, but the immediacy, the excitement of the action is reduced. This is why sports announcers often use the simple present tense to describe actions as they happen.
Chihiro: There are a few more uses for the simple present tense. In lesson 6, for example, we showed how the simple present tense is used to talk about general, timeless truths like science and math. In the future, we will also introduce some other uses, but the examples in this lesson should give you a good foundation going forward.
Daniel: Good. Now, before we wrap up, we have a study tip.
Chihiro: That's right. The 3rd person singular conjugation of verbs is easy to understand, but is often difficult for learners of English to master in real time. Be patient with yourself, and try to notice when you make a mistake. If you pay attention to your own words and notice them, you should be able to cut down on your future mistakes.
Daniel: That's right! OK, hang in there everyone!


Chihiro: That just about does it for today. Now don’t forget to stop by EnglishClass101.com and pick up the lesson notes.
Daniel: It has the conversation transcript.
Chihiro: vocab, sample sentences, a grammar explanation..
Daniel: and a cultural insight section.
Chihiro: Seeing the English
Daniel: really helps you remember faster.
Chihiro: But don’t take our word for it. Please have a look for yourself
Daniel: And let us know what you think.
Chihiro: OK, we’ll see you soon.
Daniel: Bye, everybody.


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