Sunday, May 7, 2017

Does your phone have all the BELLS & WHISTLES?

We are surrounded by technology. Some of us ARE more INTO IT (like it more) than others. Some get excited about the latest iPhone or game console; others, on the other hand, simply think it is all too much.

Well, however you feel about technology, if you are an English learner, you should learn the vocabulary used to talk about them. Try the exercises below and start using the following idioms when you talk to your friends.

I. The bolded phrases below are English idioms that are somehow related to technology. To get the complete idiom, you have to fill in the blanks with vocabulary from the group of words below. GIVE IT A SHOT (try it), then do the next exercise to check your understanding. Answers are below (or the next page), but no cheating!   

PLUG               SCIENCE               LIGHT               FUSE
  1. In the end, company directors decided to pull the ___ on the project because it cost way too much money.
  2. Besides, the idea was ___ years ahead & a lot of people couldn't see its value.
  3. The project included creating staff cell phones with all the bells and ___. Among many things, it would allow staff to clock in and out from their phones every day and allow everyone to order meals from area restaurants while keeping track of the company's lunch budget.
  4. Designers of the machine just couldn't get on the same ___ with the directors of the company.
  5. After the meeting, the head designer blew a ___ and tore up their blueprints. It was a good thing that they were all backed up.
  6. The whole team couldn't believe something so cutting ___ and great for the company could be disapproved.
  7. They thought the benefits and the low operating costs were so obvious. The concept wasn't rocket ___ at all, which made the disapproval completely perplexing.
  8. The team thinks administration will come around. The department head and the head designer don't get along, and they know how to push each other's ___.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Who is New York?

New York Language Center prides itself in providing students with an exceptional Student Life experience by immersing them in American culture and New York City life. Many ideas for our activities are inspired by information provided by TimeOut New York.  

This past Wednesday, TimeOut New York published their weekly magazine in which they explored some of the stories of the immigrants that contribute to our amazing city. We are proud to say that the staff and students of NYLC provided the translations for the cover! 

The title of the issue is "Who is New York". A phrase whose meaning can be challenging to translate into English and completely lost when translated literally into other languages. Nevertheless, we were up for the challenge, and as expected, the issue stirred lots of healthy discussion about language among our staff and students. 

As such, we are so excited to be a part of such an inspiring issue that is so relevant to the events of our day. We strongly believe that New York City is made great in large part by the people who come to live and settle down here. We were, therefore, thrilled to be a part of this project. Thank you to TimeOut NY for letting us help!

Friday, February 17, 2017

It's a piece of cake! ... & other idioms

Fill in the blanks with the words below to complete the idioms with food vocabulary in them. After trying this exercise, scroll down to check your answers. No cheating!

CAKE                BACON               BEANS           CUCUMBER
TEA                  BUNS                 JOE                  BREAD

  1. Alicia's husband is a stay-at-home dad, so she's the one who brings home the ________.
  2. In the morning, he gets the kids ready for school and makes Alicia a cup of ________.
  3. They just started a small company together, but right now, Alicia's job is their main ________ and butter.
  4. Everyone around her loves to go bowling. However, Alicia goes bowling only if her friends drag her to the bowling alley. It's just not her cup of ________.
  5. When she does go bowling, she always hits a strike. She thinks it's a piece of ________ and not so challenging.
  6. Her job is so stressful, and her colleagues admire her ability to stay as cool as a ________ all day every day. 
  7. She has a short commute to work, but she has to catch the bus. She hates freezing her ________ off in the winter.
  8. Alicia rarely gets upset, but she became so furious one day when she learned her husband found out about the surprise birthday party she was arranging for him. Someone spilled the ________! 


Scroll down or click "READ MORE" to check your answers and practice these food idioms with the following questions.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Day Without Immigrants

In the news today, you may have heard that in response to President Trump's Immigration agenda, immigrants are rallying together on strike, and pledging to not show up for work; eat out; or send their children to school. This effort hopes to highlight the contribution provided by the immigrant population in America. 

As we are a school whose mission is in part to serve the local immigrant community, we thought it was important that we mention where we stood, and who better than NYLC's Executive Director to do so. 

A Word from Our Executive Director:

"New York Language Center was founded in the belief that English makes the world a smaller place, and that English is the key to bringing together diverse communities to live, work and study in harmony regardless of ethnicity, religion or nationality. We do not make differences as to where people were born nor distinguish any differences regarding ethnicity, or nationality among our students or employees.

New York Language Center would not exist without immigrants and international students. Our employees and students make us what we are".

Monday, February 6, 2017

Getting To Know Our Students: Meet Camila from Bolivia!

Our latest video is on NYLC Midtown student, Camila who studied with our school in 2015.

Camila tells her story about moving to New York as a young woman who left her family for the first time and how she gained confidence as she learned to navigate the city and eventually makes New York her home away from home. Hear how her friends from NYLC helped her become comfortable in her new environment.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

It takes two to tango! ... & other idioms

The following sentences have idioms that are related to music and sound. Try filling in the blanks with the correct word on the list to complete each idiom. The answers and explanations are below so  you can check your work. No cheating! 

FIDDLE             WHISTLE             EARS             UP             RECORD        
EAR              HORN             BELL           TANGO          DRUM        
  1. Stop complaining about the same thing over and over. You sound like a broken _____.
  2. He’s not the most modest person in the world. He tends to toot his own _____.
  3. She’s not the only one to blame. He played a part in the whole situation. You know, it takes two to _____.
  4. He runs 5 miles a day. He’s fit as a _____.
  5. The latest news from City Hall was like music to our _____. The metrocard is going to be a dollar cheaper next month!
  6. I don’t think I know that person. The name doesn’t ring a _____.
  7. He’s always been a bit odd. He’s always marched to the beat of his own _____ since he was a child.
  8. I’m not really sure what I want to do tomorrow, so let’s just play it by _____.
  9. Wow! This place is as clean as a _____! They must have worked all day! This place was so filthy just this morning.
  10. I like it, but it’s a bit too plain. Add some color, and jazz it _____ a little.


Friday, October 28, 2016

Are you DRESSING UP this Halloween?

Are you wearing a Halloween costume this year? Are you wondering if your friends or classmates are wearing costumes? You can use the phrasal verb "dress up" to talk about it. We use "dress up" when we put on something formal (an evening dress or a tuxedo); however, we also use it when we talk about wearing costumes as on Halloween.

  • Are you dressing up for Halloween
    • Absolutely! 
  • What are you dressing up as?
    • I'm dressing up as a vampire!
  • What are you going to be this Halloween?
    • I'm going to be Donald Trump!
  • What are you going (to the party) as?
    • I'm going as a scarecrow.