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English time! Usually, used to, to be used to, to get used to y would

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Baby it’s cold outside… 

Salon de idiomas, ingles, carabanchel, aptis
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Aunque haga frío fuera, en el Salón de Idiomas estamos entrando en calor mientras nos tomamos un té inglés y trabajamos en nuestro blog. Es diciembre y ésta vez nos sentimos inspirados por el frío y la Navidad para trabajar en algo que tantos quebraderos de cabeza da a nuestros alumnos: el uso de used to, usually, get used to, be used to y would.


Usually

Usually se utiliza en inglés como adverbio y significa normalmente, aunque a veces también se traduce como el verbo “soler”.

A diferencia del castellano que sí tiene el verbo “soler”, en inglés no hay un verbo como tal en presente simple, sino un adverbio: usually. No existe “use to” en presente.

Ej.: She usually cleans her car every Sunday at my uncle’s petrol station.

Ella suele lavar su coche cada domingo en la gasolinera de su tío.

Cuál es el orden de los adverbios en una frase?

Used to

Used to es un verbo que se utiliza para hacer referencias a acciones del pasado. That’s why sólo se utiliza sólo en PASADO SIMPLE (acaba en -ed) y además va seguido de un verbo en infinitivo sin to.

Used to da constancia de un hecho en pasado (sin necesidad de ser una costumbre) que ya no ocurre. Es por eso que más que “solía”, la traducción exacta en castellano sería “antes“: I used to be a student (yo antes era estudiante); There used to be a shop at the corner (había una tienda en la esquina -no hay traducción).

Careful!  En oraciones negativas e interrogativas el verbo auxiliar es DID

+ Pete used to help me with the laundry. Pete solía ayudarme con la colada. Antes Pete me ayudaba con la colada.

– Pete DID NOT use to help me with the laundry. Pete no solía ayudarme con la colada antes.

? DID Pete use to help you with the laundry? Pete te ayudaba con la colada antes?

Si a veces quieres decir “antes” en inglés, es probable que sea el “used to” no “before” (antes de algo).

Salon de idiomas, ingles, carabanchel, aptis
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To Be used to (estar acostumbrado a)

Formación: to be (verbo-se conjuga) + used to (adjetivo) + sustantivo/gerundio

El verbo to be puede conjugarse en cualquier tiempo.

Noun (un sustantivo)   I am used to the sunny weather of sourthern Spain (Estoy acostumbrada al clima soleado del sur de España).

Gerund (-ing)    I was used to sunbathing in summer (Estoy acostumbrada a tomar el sol en verano).

 

 Un gerundio (palabra que acaba en -ing) suele funcionar como un sustantivo

To get used to (acostumbrarse a algo)

Lo único que lo diferencia del “to be used to” es que “get” implica proceso, no estado.

  • Noun (un nombre)    I get used to the sunny weather of sourthern Spain (Me acostumbro al clima soleado del sur de España).
  • Gerund (-ing)           I got used to sunbathing in summer (Me acostumbré a tomar el sol en verano).

 

Would (solía)

Si antes decíamos que used to se refiere a una acción/hecho que ya no ocurre en el presente y que se debería traducir como “antes” (incluso un “ya no”), ahora nos centramos en “would” como es verdadero pero desconocido “solía”.

Would (cuando no aparece en condicionales) hace referencia a un hábito, acción repetitiva en el pasado que se centra en la costumbre en el pasado, “solía”.

Ej.: I used to be vegetarian and I would eat fruit on a daily basis (Yo antes era vegetariana y solía comer fruta a diario).

Would es un verbo modal y sigue las reglas de los verbos modales (1. no se conjuga, 2. nunca le sigue otro modal y 3. le sigue un infinitivo sin “to”)


 

Guys! keep in mind you have to get used to these verbs and expressions.

Conociendo bien el uso de éstas construcciones, podrás hacer un speaking estupendo ya sea para el examen del First, Advanced o incluso Aptis.

Así que practicad muuuuuuuuuchos ejercicios para get used to them 😉

Go for it! A por ello!

Exercise 1 – usually, used to, be used to, get used to and would.

Salon de idiomas, ingles, carabanchel, aptis
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  1. I  ___________ work in a bank, but I changed my career and now I’m an architect.
  2. We ________ go to the cinema very often.
  3. We  ______ eating out every Saturday.
  4. I  _________ getting up early. I’ve been doing it for 30 years.
  5. I’ve been in France for a week and I _______  driving on the right.
  6. I’m ________  having dinner at 6. In my country we eat later.
  7. Do you ________  go to the pub after work?
  8. My father _________  tell us stories when we were in bed.
  9. I ________ be  blond when I was a child.
  10. You’ll have to __________ eating without salt.

Answers 😉 : 1. used to, 2. usually, 3. are used to, 4. am used to, 5. am getting used to, 6. not used to, 7. usually, 8. would, 9. used to, 10. get used to

Exercise 2 – used to and would

Choose the correct answer:

  1. I didn’t__________________live in Madrid.score
  2. We______________often go on holiday in summers.score
  3. When I was a little child, we_____________have a cat as a pet.score
  4. He_________________as a doctor for many years.score
  5. As a child, he never_________________have any money.score
  6. Did you____________like playing cricket at school?score
  7. There never______________a hospital here.score
  8. My mum ____________always read to my sister before bed.

Answers 😉 : 1. used to, 2. would, 3. used to, 4. would, 5. used to, 6. used to, 7.used to, 8. would.

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Expresiones útiles para el Speaking (opinión, estar de acuerdo, desacuerdo)

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Queridos lectores,

¿Qué tal lleváis el otoño? ¿Contentos como en verano o menos? Esperamos que sí porque hay que estar contento y con ganas de Speaking of course. Por eso desde el Salón de Idiomas os traemos novedades, en este caso un bonito cuadro con expresiones útiles para el Speaking tanto si es one-to-one o monologo.

SHOW INTEREST IN THE TOPIC

  • Really?
  • That’s interesting!
  • Right!
  • I see
  • I can’t believe it!
  • Reply questions: I went to Paris – Did you?
  • Uh huh
  • As you said before, … (referring to what the other speaker said before shows you’ve been paying attention)

 

DIRECT THE CONVERSATION TOWARDS THE TOPIC

  • By the way,
  • Speaking of…
  • That reminds me of…

 

 

 

FILLERS

  • So,
  • You see, …
  • …, you see, …
  • You know,
  • I mean,
  • …, like,… (too informal)

 

CHECK THAT THEY’RE UNDERSTANDING YOU

 

  • Right?
  • OK?

 

KEEPING YOUR LISTENER ENGAGED

  • Rhetorical questions (questions you don’t really expect an answer for, you sort of answer them yourself):

What do I mean by that?  / Is smoking dangerous? Of course it is

  • As you very well know, …

 

LOOKING FOR AGREEMENT:

  • Don’t you think?
  • Question tags (Isn’t it, has it…)
  • You know what I mean,

 

GIVING THE FLOOR (turn to speak):

 

  • Don’t you think?
  • Question tags (Isn’t it, has it…)

 

AGREEING:

  • Absolutely
  • I see what you mean
  • I see your point
  • You have a point there.
  • Exactly
  • Definitely
  • I agree with you / him …
  •  I share your view… I think so.                                     
  • I really think so.
    (The author / the narrator / the protagonist / etc.) is  right 
  • He is quite right / absolutely right  
  •  He may be right.
    I have no objection. 
  •  I approve of it.    
  •  I have come to the same conclusion           
  •  I hold the same opinion.             
  •  We are of one mind / of the same mind on that question. 
  • I am at one with him on that point.
  •  It is true/ That is right.
  • That’s just it !  Fair enough!  Quite so ! Just so!   Yes of  course !

 

DISAGREEING

  • I see your point, but…
  • Your point is well taken, but …
  • I beg to differ
  • (I’m afraid) That’s not always the case
  • I don’t agree/  I disagree / I don’t think so.
  • You are / he is wrong /  I think otherwise
  •  I don’t think that’s quite right.
  • I don’t agree with you/him.    
  •  I don’t agree with what you say.      
  •  I am afraid that is not quite true.
  • I take a different view. 
  •  I don’t share his/her/your view.           
  • This argument does not hold water.
    Not at all ! Nonsens!    Rubbish !
  • He’s off his head !

 

SAYING “NO”

  • Not really, no (rather than a plain “no”)

ex. –Do you like football? –  Not really, no (instead of “noooo!”)

  • I don’t think so.

ex. Are you coming? – I don’t think so

GIVING OPINION:

  • Personally, I think this is a good question
  • I don’t know about you, but I …
  • I feel (strongly) that…
  • I (strongly) believe that…
  • It seems to me that…
  • I have the impression that…
  • I reckon…(informal)
  • Speaking from personal experience,
  • For me personally,

 

USEFUL EXPRESSIONS TO EXPRESS YOUR OPINION

 

In my opinion, …   In my eyes, …

To my mind, …  As far as I am concerned…  Speaking personally, …

From my point of view, …   As for me / As to me, …

My view / opinion / belief / impression / conviction is that …                                  

 I hold the view that …

I would say that …   It seems to me that …  I am of the opinion that …

My impression is that …                         

I am under the impression that …  It is my impression that

I have the feeling that …                        

 My own feeling on the subject is that …

I have no doubt that …                           

 I am sure / I am certain that …           

I think / consider / find / feel / believe / suppose / presume / assume that …

I hold the opinion that …  (I form / adopt an opinion.)                    

 I dare say that …

I guess that …  I bet that ….   I gather that …

It goes without saying that …                 

ASKING FOR THE OTHER SPEAKER’S OPINION:

  • How do you feel about…?
  • What’s your take on…?
  • Where do you stand on….?
  • What are your thoughts on this?
  • What do you reckon (informal)?

 

INTERRUPTING:

  • I’m sorry to interrupt, but…
  • Can I interrupt you just for a second (here)?

SUMMARISING:

  • In a nutshell,
  • To make a long story short

REPHRASING:

  • In other words,
  • …, that is to say, …

 

 
   

 

Giving Opinions

Elementary

 

  1. I (really) think that …
  2. I believe (that) …
  3. I’m sure that …
  4. In my opinion / My opinion is …

 

Pre-intermediate

  1. I agree with …
  2. I feel that …
  3. I guess/imagine …
  4. I have no doubt that / I’m certain that …
  5. I strongly believe that …
  6. I’ve never really thought about this before, but …
  7. My personal opinion is that / Personally, my opinion is that …
  8. To be honest / In my honest opinion, …

 

Intermediate

  1. As far as I know, …
  2. I agree with the opinion of …
  3. I could be wrong, but …
  4. I’d definitely say that …
  5. I’d guess/imagine that …
  6. I’d say that …
  7. I’m absolutely certain that …
  8. I’m fairly confident that …
  9. I’m no expert (on this), but …
  10. I’m positive that …
  11. I’m pretty sure that …
  12. It seems to me that …
  13. It’s a complicated/difficult issue, but …
  14. My (point of) view (on this) is …
  15. Obviously, …
  16. Some people may disagree with me, but …
  17. This is just my opinion, but …
  18. Without a doubt, …
  19. You probably won’t agree, but …

 

Upper-intermediate

  1. After much thought, …
  2. After weighing up both sides of the argument, …
  3. Although I can see both points of view / Although I can understand the opposite point of view, …
  4. As I see it, …
  5. Correct me if I’m wrong, but …
  6. For me/ From my point of view, …
  7. Frankly, …
  8. I am not very familiar with this topic, but …
  9. I do believe/ feel/think …
  10. I have come to the conclusion that …
  11. I might change my mind later, but …
  12. I reckon/suppose …
  13. I tend to think that …
  14. I’m not sure I’m the right person to ask, but / I have very limited experience of this, but …
  15. I’m pretty confident that …
  16. I’ve always thought that …
  17. If you ask me, …
  18. I’m (absolutely) convinced that …
  19. In my humble opinion / IMHO, …
  20. It could be said that …
  21. It seems clear to me that …
  22. It would seem to me that …
  23. My initial reaction is …
  24. Not everyone will/would agree with me, but …
  25. Personally speaking / Speaking for myself, …
  26. The way I see it (is) …
  27. To be (perfectly) frank, …
  28. To the best of my knowledge, …
  29. What I think is …
  30. You could say …

 

Advanced

  1. After giving this matter some (serious) thought, …
  2. As far as I’m concerned, …
  3. As the old saying goes, …
  4. Having given this question due consideration, …
  5. I am of the opinion that …
  6. I can’t help thinking that …
  7. I know this is a minority view, but / I’m in the minority in thinking that …
  8. I tend towards the opinion that …
  9. I think it’s fair/reasonable to say …
  10. I’ll tell you what I think, …
  11. I’m entirely/quite convinced that …
  12. I’ve come the conclusion that …
  13. If I must come up with an opinion / If you (really) want my opinion, …
  14. In my limited experience, …
  15. It could/might well be that …
  16. Know what I think? …
  17. My opinion was best expressed by … when s/he said/wrote …
  18. My view/position on this (issue) (is clear and) is that …
  19. Off the top of my head, …
  20. Plainly, …
  21. Quite frankly, …
  22. There is a part of me that says …
  23. This may well be controversial, but …
  24. To my mind / To my way of thinking, …
  25. To summarise my (rather complex) views on the matter, …
  26. What I always say is …
  27. With some reservations, …
  28. Without a shred/shadow of doubt, …
  29. You’d have to be crazy not to agree that / Any idiot can see that …

 

 

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