Monthly Archives: April 2015

Collocation challenge 28/4/15 – verb + against

Today’s collocation challenge explores verbs which appear with the preposition against.

Start by making complete sentences from columns A, B, C and D.  Use the grammatical and vocabulary clues in columns A, B and D to help you do this (e.g. tenses, pronouns, related words etc.)

Then, think about the verbs and phrases in columns B and C and try to work out their meaning from the context of the whole sentence.  If you need to check them, look them up in an online dictionary.

Next, cover column B.  Test whether you can remember the verb which goes into each sentence.

After that, cover all the columns except column A.  Can you reconstruct the whole sentence?

Finally, write your own example sentences with the verbs you think are useful to learn and try to use the verbs in your next class or writing assignment.

verb + against


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Collocation challenge 24/4/15: Binomial challenge 1

The building work will take more or less a month to complete.

Her presentation was short and sweet – it only lasted about 10 minutes but she got in everything she needed to include.

I’ve booked a holiday in the countryside this summer.  I’m really looking forward to enjoying the peace and quiet and getting away from the city.

Sooner or later they’ll realise what a silly mistake they’ve made. 

The underlined pairs of words above are examples of binomials – words which often appear together joined by a conjunction (e.g. and) or a preposition in a fixed order (e.g. it’s always more or less not less or more).

Today’s collocation challenge includes a test of some of these pairs.

The challenge:  choose a pair of words from the image to complete sentences  1-10.  We’ll publish the answers in a few days in the comments section.

1)  I won’t explain everything that happened in the meeting but the __________ of it is that we’ve successfully negotiated an extension of the contract.

2)  Having grown up in the countryside it was quite hard to get used to the __________ of city life when I first moved here.

3)  The closure of the train station has left many commuters who relied on the train for getting to work __________.

4)  It’s __________ with him – he either plays brilliantly or he seems completely useless!

5)  It was __________.  If I didn’t tell her how I felt now, I knew I never would.  I took a deep breath and…

6)  Working to tight deadlines is __________ of my job.

7)  He expects his mum to be at his __________ 24/7.

8)  People came from __________ to see the exhibition.

9)  Local residents have been fighting __________ to prevent the closure of the station in their village.

10)  Considering its age the car is in pretty good condition – just a few scratches, you know, a little __________ around the bodywork.

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