75 Errors in Word Usage (A1-A2 level).






#1 – Said / Told
Don’t say: “She said me that she was happy.” Say: “She told me that she was happy.”
Or: “She said that she was happy.”
Tell means “to give information to a person” – so tell (present) and told (past) are always
followed by a person: me, you, him, her, us, them, John, Jane, the teacher, etc. With say (present) or said (past), we can use these structures:
1.         say (something)Francis says she doesn’t like chocolate.
2.         say that (something)I said that the new website design was great.
3.         say (something) to (a person)What did the teacher say to you when you failed the test?
4.         “(something)” a person said “Nice to meet you,” Harry said.
Just remember – you say something, and you tell someone something!
#2 – Irregular Plurals
Don’t say: “I have three childrens.”
Say: “I have three children.”
Or: “I have three kids.”
The plural of “child” is “children” – because the word “children” is already plural, we don’t add “s.” Another possibility is to say “kids,” which is an alternative word for “children.” Here are some more nouns with irregular plurals:
·      person / people
·      man / men
·      woman / women
·      foot / feet
·      tooth / teeth
·      mouse / mice
·      crisis / crises
·      nucleus / nuclei, etc.
#3 – Years Old
Don’t say: “My daughter has eight years.”
Don’t say: “My daughter has eight years old.”
Say: “My daughter is eight years old.”
When speaking about age in English, we use the verb be (am, is, are) and not have/has.
-       I’m thirty years old.My nephew is fourteen years old. These houses are 200 years old.
-       We can also say am / are / is + __age__ without “years old”:
e.g.: I’m thirty.My nephew is fourteen. My kids are six and eight.
When it is somebody’s birthday, we say they turn __ “age”:
e.g.: We threw a big party when my mother turned fifty. My husband’s turning forty next month.My youngest cousin just turned three.
#4 – Marriage / Wedding
Don’t say: “I’m going to my best friend’s marriage on Sunday.”
Say: “I’m going to my best friend’s wedding on Sunday.”
Wedding = The ceremony
I’m going to my cousin’s wedding on October 7.We want to have a band at our wedding reception.The wedding will be at the church, and the reception will be at a restaurant.
Marriage = The relationship in general, or the institution in society
My parents have a strong marriage. They’ve been together for 35 years. New York has just legalized gay marriage.Over 40% of marriages end in divorce.
Married = Describes the status of a person My sister isn’t married. She’s single.
I’ve been married for 5 years.Get married = The action of going from single to married
We’re getting married in July. My teacher got married last year.
#5 – Need / Have to
Don’t say: “I need study more.” Say: “I need to study more.” Or: “I have to study more.”
When the word need is followed by a verb, we say need to (or have to). When the word need is followed by a noun, we don’t use “to”:
I need a book.(book = noun)I need to go to the library. (go = verb)
#6 – Meet / Know
Don’t say: “I knew him last year.”
Say: “I met him last year.”
Meet has two meanings:
When you have first contact with a person (“I met him last year”)When you will encounter someone you already know. In this case, we often use “meet with” or “meet up with” (“I’m meeting up with some friends at the bar after work.”)
Know has two different meanings/uses:
With knowledge and skills in general (“He knows everything about computers.” With knowing people in general (“Do you know Janet? She’s in the advanced English class.” – “No, I don’t think I know her.”)
#7 – Explain
Don’t say: “Can you explain me the problem?” Say: “Can you explain the problem to me?”
Explain is like “say/said” – we explain something to someone. We can also say “explain that” – “The agent explained that our flight had been delayed 30 minutes because of the storm.”
#8 – Recommend / Suggest
Don’t say: “I recommend you to get more exercise.”
Say: “I recommend that you get more exercise.”
Or: “You should get more exercise.”Recommend and suggest are followed by that or by the –ing form. Don’t use “to”! Examples:
I suggested that he see a doctor. I suggested seeing a doctor.I suggested him to see a doctor.
#9 – Ask / Ask for / Ask about Ask (someone) to
Don’t say: “I asked to my boss...”
Say: “I asked my boss...”
Never use a preposition between “ask” and the person you are asking. When you want an object, you can use ask for + object:
·      I asked for a hamburger.
·      I asked my boss for a raise.
When you want general information, you can use ask about:
·      I asked about her family.
·      She asked me about my job.
When you want specific information, you can use ask + (question word):
·      I asked how much the camera cost.
·      Let’s ask what time the theater opens.
·      One moment – I’m on the phone asking my brother where we can park the car.
Finally, when you want somebody to do something, you can use ask (someone) to:
·      I asked him to turn off the lights.
·      Martha asked me not to use her computer.
·      We’re going to ask the teacher to help us.
#10 – Pass the time / Spend time
Don’t say: “I pass a lot of time reading.”
Say: “I spend a lot of time reading.”
Use “spend time” to talk about the time you do an activity. The expression pass the time is different – it means doing something to make the time pass faster while you are waiting for something else, for example, “I look at the magazines to pass the time while waiting for my appointment at the dentist’s office.”
#11 – Lose / Miss
Don’t say: “I lost my flight.”
Say: “I missed my flight.”
Use lose with objects – “Oh no! I lost my keys!” or with sports games – “My favorite soccer team lost 3-0 in the semifinal.” Use miss with transportation (flights, trains, buses) or with events and opportunities – “You missed a great English class yesterday!”
We also use miss to talk about feeling sad when we don’t see someone – “My brother moved to Australia last year. I really miss him!”
#12 – Look / Look at/ Look for / Look up
Don’t say: “Look this picture.” Say: “Look at this picture.”
Look at – Direct your attention to somethingLook for – Try to find something that is lost: “I’m looking for my glasses. Do you know where
they are?”Look up – Try to find information: “I always look up new words in the dictionary.”
Look up to (someone) – Admire a person for their good character. “I really look up to my father – I hope to be as kind and generous as he is.”
Look down on (someone) – Consider a person to be inferior. “My boss is so arrogant. She looks down on everybody and treats us like we don’t know anything.”
Look after – Take care of. “I’m looking after my neighbor’s dogs while she’s on vacation.” Look into – Investigate. “The police are looking into the case.”
Look forward to – Be happy about something that will happen in the future. “I’m really looking forward to our family trip to the mountains. It’s going to be so relaxing!”
Look over – Review, evaluate, check for errors. “Can you look over my report and make some suggestions on how to improve it?”
Look out! – Be careful! “Look out! That pan is going to fall off the stove.”
#13 – History / Story
Don’t say: “He told me a funny history about his dog.” Say: “He told me a funny story about his dog.”
History refers to everything that has happened in the past, especially in the political, economical, and social areas. History is always based in truth and facts. A story may be truth or fiction; it is the description of an event or series of events that is usually told to teach or entertain.
#14 – For / To
Don’t say: “I’m studying every day for improve my English.” Say: “I’m studying every day to improve my English.”
The words to and for are very easy to confuse! Here are some rules:
Use to in these cases:
1. Destination (We’re going to Paris.)
2. What time it is (It’s a quarter to 2.)
3. Distance (It’s about ten miles from my house to the university.)
4. Comparing (I prefer sleeping to working.)
5. Giving (I gave the book to my sister.)
6. Motive/Reason – with verb (I came here to see you.)
Use for in these cases:
1. Benefits (Yogurt is good for your digestion.)
2. Period of time (We’ve lived here for 2 years.)
3. Schedule (I made an appointment for May 3.)
4. Agree with (Are you for or against the development of nuclear weapons?)
5. Doing something to help someone (Could you carry these books for me?)
6. Motive/Reason – with noun (Let’s go out for a drink.)
As you can see in #6, to or for can be used for a motive/reason, but to is always with a verb, and for is always with a noun. Here’s a good example:
·      I came to New York to work.
·      I came to New York for a new job.

#15 – Like
Don’t say: “I like very much this book.”
Say: “I like this book very much.” (formal)
Or: “I like this book a lot.”
Or: “I really like this book.”“Very much” is an adverb that describes “like.” In English, we usually put adverbs either before
the verb or at the end of the sentence. Look at these examples:
The new product reached easily 1 million sales. The new product reached 1 million sales easily. The new product easily reached 1 million sales.
#16 – Information
Don’t say: “I’d like some informations about...” Say: “I’d like some information about...”
English nouns are either countable or uncountable. Countable nouns are things we can count – for example, cats:
·      My brother has a cat.
·      My sister has two cats.
·      My friend has three cats.
Other examples of countable nouns:
·      Things - book, table, computer, banana, shirt, television, pen, house.
·      People - man, woman, child, friend, brother, sister, uncle, teacher, boss.
Uncountable nouns are words that we can’t count, or can’t divide into separate parts:
·      Ideas and concepts - love, fun, sadness, work, money, peace, safety
·      Information - advice, information, news, knowledge.
·      Categories - music, furniture, equipment, jewelry, literature, meat
·      Liquids and foods that can’t be counted - water, butter, rice, flour, milk.
We NEVER add “-s” to uncountable nouns!
#17 – Agree
Don’t say: “I’m agree with you.” Say: “I agree with you.”
We can say “I agree with you” or “I’m in agreement with you” (more formal). We can also say “agree to” do the action resulting from the agreement:
Michael agreed to help me with my homework after class. My neighbor and I agreed not to play loud music after 10 PM.
#18 – Thinking
Don’t say: “I’m thinking to buy a car.”
Say: “I’m thinking of buying a car.”
Or: “I’m thinking about buying a car.”
Think is often followed by of or about, but never to. Also, the correct form of the verb is the -ing form.
#19 – Travel / Trip / Journey
Don’t say: “How was your travel?”
Say: “How was your trip?”
Trip is a noun and travel is a verb.
A trip (n.) is one specific act of going to another place (often for a short time) and returning.
·      We took a five-day trip to the Amazon.
·      You’re back from vacation! How was your trip?
·      I went on business trips to Switzerland and Germany last month.
Use the verbs “take” and “go on” with trip.
Travel (v.) is going to another place (in general).
·      I really like to travel.
·      He travels frequently for work.
·      My sister is currently travelling through South America.
Travel can be used as a noun to describe the act of travelling in general:
·      Travel in that region of the country is dangerous.
·      World travel gives you a new perspective.
A journey (n.) is one piece of travel (going from one place to another) – usually a long distance.
·      The journey takes 3 hours by plane or 28 hours by bus.
·      He made the 200-mile journey by bike.
·      “A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step” - Lao-tze, Tao Te Ching.
We can also use journey in a more “metaphorical” way to talk about progress in life:
·      He’s overcome a lot of problems on his spiritual journey.
·      My uncle is an alcoholic, but he’s beginning the journey to sobriety.
#20 – The
Don’t say: “In the Russia...”
Say: “In Russia...”
Never use “the” with names of countries, states, or cities.
Exceptions: the United States, the Philippines, the Soviet Union, the Roman Empire.
You can use “the” with regions:
·      I’m from the northeast.
·      We’re going to the south of Argentina.
#21 – Actually / Currently
Don’t say: “Actually, I work at the university.” Say: “Currently, I work at the university.”
Currently means “now, at the present moment.”Actually means “in reality,” and it is often used to make corrections:
·      “You’re from Brazil so you speak Spanish, right?” “Actually, Portuguese is spoken in Brazil.”
#22 – Remember / Remind
Don’t say: “Could you remember me the date of the test?”
Say: “Could you remind me when the test is?” Remember is when you think of a memory (a past experience):
·      I remember the first time I ever swam in the ocean, when I was 5 years old.
·      Do you remember the great Italian restaurant we ate at in New York?
·      I don’t think he remembers that we met 30 years ago.
Remember is also the opposite of “forget.” You can use remember to talk about keeping something in your mind:
·      Please remember to wash the dishes after you finish eating lunch.
·      I was already at work when I suddenly remembered I had a dentist appointment at 9:30. I called the dentist and rescheduled it for the next day.
·      I can’t remember her name. Is it Alice or Annie?
Remind is when a person or thing makes you think about something.
·      My mother reminded me to wash the dishes after I finished eating lunch.
·      The secretary reminded Mr. Greene that he had a meeting at 4:30.
·      Josh uses the calendar on his cell phone to remind him about important dates.
·      Our shopping list reminds us what we need to buy at the supermarket.
#23 – Since / For
Don’t say: “I’ve worked here since three years.” Say: “I’ve worked here for three years.”
Or: “I’ve been working here for three years.”
Use “for” with periods of time:
·      For – three years, two weeks, four days, five hours, ten minutes, decades, centuries
Use “since” with a definite point in time:
·      Since – 1973, last June, Monday, I was a child, I graduated from college, my last birthday
In this case, we can use either the present perfect simple (I’ve worked) or the present perfect continuous (I’ve been working) – there is no difference in meaning with this sentence.
#24 – A / An / One
Don’t say: “I took one pen and started to write.” Say: “I took a pen and started to write.”
Use one when the number is important; when you want to emphasize that it is one (and not two or three or more):
·      One of these eggs is rotten, but the others are OK.
·      I wanted to buy three CDs, but I didn’t have enough money, so I bought only one.
In all other cases, when the fact of being “one” is not important, use a / an:
·      I had an omelet for breakfast.
·      I bought a new CD yesterday.
#25 – ‘s
Don’t say: “I went to the house of my friend.” Don’t say: “I went to my friend house.”
Say: “I went to my friend’s house.”In English, we normally use ‘s and not of for possessives:
·      My sister’s dog.
·      The teacher’s car
·      Paul’s wife’s dress
When the word already ends in –s, just add ‘
·      Jesus’ words
·      Our boss’ office
·      My kids’ toys
#26 – Despite / In spite of
Don’t say: “Despite of the problems, we finished the project on time.”
Don’t say: Despite there were problems, we finished the project on time.”
Say: “Despite the problems, we finished the project on time.”
Or: “In spite of the problems, we finished the project on time.”
Or: “Despite having problems, we finished the project on time.”
Despite and in spite of are the same – but “despite of” doesn’t exist! After despite or in spite of, you can use a noun or the –ing form of a verb.
#27 – Better / Worse/ More / Much
Don’t say: “My new computer is more better than my old one.”
Say: “My new computer is better than my old one.”
Or: “My new computer is much better than my old one.” Let’s review the rules for comparatives:
·      1 syllable: fast as faster.
·      Words ending in Y: easy as easier
·      2+ syllables: popular as more popular
·      IRREGULAR: good as better
·      IRREGULAR: bad à worse, etc.

“Better” is already comparative, so it is not necessary to add “more.” But if you want to say that the computer is A LOT better, you can say “much better.” Here’s another example:
Candy - $2.00 / Ice cream - $2.25 / Chocolate cake - $20.00
·      The ice cream is a little more expensive than the candy.(or “slightly more expensive,” or “a bit more expensive”).
·      The chocolate cake is much more expensive than the candy.(or “a lot more expensive,” “far more expensive,” or “way more expensive” – informal)
#28 – Wait / Hope / Expect
Don’t say: “I’m waiting my friend to call.”
Say: “I’m waiting for my friend to call.”
Wait = Pass the time until something happens
·      It’s 6:45. I’m waiting for the 7:00 bus.
·      We waited in line for three hours to get tickets to the concert.
·      You need to wait for the computer to finish updating.
Don’t confuse “wait” with hope and expect:
Hope = Want something to happen
·      I hope I’ll get a promotion this year!
·      I’m sorry to hear you’re sick. I hope you get better soon!
·      The traffic is very bad today. I hope I won’t be late.
Expect = Believe that something probably will happen

#29 – Difficult / Difficulty
Don’t say: “I have difficulty to wake up early.”
Say: “It’s difficult for me to wake up early.”
Or: “It’s hard for me to wake up early.” (more informal, more common)
In spoken English, the word hard is frequently used instead of “difficult.”The phrase “I have difficulty” can be used before a noun, and the phrase “It’s difficult” or “It’s hard” is used before a verb:
I have difficulty with grammar. / I have a hard time with grammar.(grammar = noun)

It’s difficult for me to understand English. / It’s hard for me to understand English. (understand = verb)
#30 – Fun / Funny
Don’t say: “I like playing basketball. It’s funny.”
Say: “I like playing basketball. It’s fun.”
Many students confuse the words fun and funny.
Fun = Enjoyable
·      English class is fun!
·      I think playing basketball is more fun than playing soccer.
·      We had fun at the party.
Funny = It makes you laugh (comedy)
·      The movie is really funny.
·      I heard a funny story yesterday.
·      I love that comedian. He’s so funny.

#31 – Want / Hope
Don’t say: “She wants that I call her back.”
Say: “She wants me to call her back.”
After want and would like, we normally don’t use “that.”.
It’s possible to use “that” after hope or wish, but it’s not necessary:
·      I hope that you feel better soon.= I hope you feel better soon.
·      I wish that I hadn’t gotten so angry. = I wish I hadn’t gotten so angry.
After want and would like, we can use a noun, or a person + to + verb:
·      I’d like a drink.I’d like you to get me a drink.
·      Dan wants some money.Dan wants me to lend him some money.
#32 – Without / After / Before
Don’t say: “They left without say goodbye.” Say: “They left without saying goodbye.”
After without, after, and before, use the –ing form of the verb.
·      Please turn off the lights before leaving.
·      My life changed after having kids.
In the case of after and before, we can also use subject + verb:
·      Please turn off the lights before you leave.
·      My life changed after I had kids.
#33 – Nothing / Anything
Don’t say: “I didn’t buy nothing at the store.” Say: “I didn’t buy anything at the store.”
In English, we can’t have a “double negative” in the sentence. Use any- instead:
·      I don’t know no one at this party.
è I don’t know anyone at this party.
·      We aren’t doing anything at the moment.
·      They didn’t travel anywhere during their vacation.
·      You shouldn’t buy any of those shoes – they’re overpriced.
·      The teacher hasn’t given any homework so far this week.
·      Don’t worry, he won’t tell anybody your secret.
We also use any- in questions:
·      Do you know anyone at this party?
·      Are you doing anything at the moment?
·      Did they travel anywhere during their vacation?
·      Should I buy any of these shoes?
·      Has the teacher given any homework this week?
·      Will he tell anybody my secret?
#34 – Interested / Interesting
Don’t say: “I’m interesting in adopt an animal.”
Say: “I’m interested in adopting an animal.”
There are two errors in this sentence. The first one is the difference between interesting and interested. In general, with adjectives that have both –ing and –ed forms, use the –ed form to describe how you feel and the –ing form to describe the thing/person/event that causes the feeling:
I’m bored. This movie is boring.Here are other pairs of adjectives that follow this pattern:
I’m tired. My job is very tiring.I’m excited! This soccer game is really exciting!I’m frustrated. The problems in my life are so frustrating. I’m surprised. This situation is quite surprising.I’m confused. The book I’m reading is confusing.
#35 – It
Don’t say: “Was obvious that something was wrong.”
Say: “It was obvious that something was wrong.”
All sentences in English need a subject (I, you, he, she, we, they, or it) – and many students forget the subject it. Here are more examples of common sentences with it:
·      It’s raining.(“it” is used as the subject because there is no subject)
·      “How was your interview?”“It was great!”(it = the interview).
·      It’s not easy to work full-time while in school.
·      “Do you want to buy this cell phone?”
·      “I’m not sure. Can it access the internet?”
·      I like your necklace. Is it real gold?
·      According to the weather forecast, it’ll be sunny and hot tomorrow.
#36 – Fabric / Factory
Don’t say: “The company has 10 fabrics in 5 countries.”
Say: “The company has 10 factories in 5 countries.”
Fabric is a type of material used to make clothes, sheets, blankets, etc.
A factory is a place that manufactures products.
#37 – Rob / Steal / Thief
Don’t say: “My cell phone was robbed.”
Say: “My cell phone was stolen.”
Robber / Thief (n.)= the person; the criminal
·      The robbers ran away from the police.
·      The thief took my laptop and cell phone.
·      “Give me all your money!” the robber said.
·      The thieves were tall, white men who looked about 22 years old.
Robbery (n.) = the event
·      Police are investigating the robbery of the Main Street Bank.
·      The robbery occurred at 4:30 PM.
·      Three employees were injured during the armed robbery.(an “armed robbery” means there were weapons – guns or knives)
Theft (n.) = the event or the crime (in the justice system)
·      He was sentenced to eight years in prison for the theft of a motorcycle.
·      We immediately reported the theft to the police.
·      Ken was accused of identity theft.
Rob (v.) = the action.
Often used in the past as robbed:
·      Donald robbed a total of five supermarkets before being caught by the police.
·      My favorite pizza shop was robbed last month. Luckily, no one was hurt.
·      I was robbed at gunpoint while walking home from work.
Steal / Stolen (v.) = the action of taking something specific.
Steal is always used together with an object – the object that was taken.
·      The thief stole a gold necklace from the woman’s bedroom.
·      Wendy’s wallet was stolen on the subway.
·      Jim was caught stealing money from his own company.
·      Rachel tried to steal Carla’s boyfriend.
To describe a thief entering a house or apartment, we can also use the phrasal verb break into:
·      “My house was broken into last month.”
·      “Oh, really? Was anything stolen?”
·      “Yes, they took my DVD player and my laptop.”
#38 – All / Whole / Every
Don’t say: “I invited all the class.”
Say: “I invited the entire class.” (more formal)
Or: “I invited the whole class.” (more informal) Use every with singular, countable nouns:
·      I exercise every day.
·      Every student in the class has a computer.
·      Every necklace in this store costs more than $1,000.
Use all with plural countable nouns OR with uncountable nouns to mean 100% of many things:
·      All of this equipment is new.= many pieces of equipment.
·      All the students in the class have computers.
·      All the necklaces in this store are expensive.
Use whole or entire with uncountable or singular countable nouns to mean 100% of one thing:
·      I ate the whole pizza.= 100% of one pizza.
·      I finished reading the entire book in three days. =100% of one book.
Here are more examples that show the difference between all and whole:
·      I ate the whole cake.= 100% of one cake.
·      I ate all the cakes.= 100% of many cakes
·      The whole apple is rotten. = 100% of one apple.
·      All the fruit is rotten.= 100% of many apples, bananas, grapes, etc.
#39 – Politics / Policy
Don’t say: “The company adopted a new politic.”
Say: “The company adopted a new policy.”
Policy refers to rules, guidelines, and standards for behavior. Politics refers to government.
#40 – Before / Ago / Back
Don’t say: “I sent the letter two months before.”
Say: “I sent the letter two months ago.”
Or: “I sent the letter two months back.” (informal)
Ago and back are used for past times from the present moment.
Before is used for past times from another time in the past. Here are some examples of before:
·      Yesterday I missed my train. I got to the train station at 7:10, but the train had left ten minutes before.
·      I was very happy when I got this job last year, because I had lost my previous job six months before.
(You can also use “earlier” when talking about past events before another event in the past)
#41 – So / Such
Don’t say: “I have so wonderful friends.”
Say: “I have such wonderful friends.”
Or: “My friends are so wonderful.”
The rule here is simple: after “so,” use an adjective. After “such,” use the adjective + the object/ person described. Compare these sentences:
·      Their dog is so cute.
·      They have such a cute dog.
·      Her kids are so obedient.
·      She has such obedient kids.
#42 – The
Don’t say: “The love is beautiful.”
Say: “Love is beautiful.”
Don’t use the before general ideas or concepts like happiness, love, respect, or fun. You can only use “the” with these words if talking about a specific case or example:
·      Love is beautiful.(love in general)
·      The love between Romeo and Juliet is beautiful.(the specific love between Romeo and Juliet).
·      Respect for customers is essential.(respect in general).
·      The respect my son has for his father is impressive.(one specific case of respect)
·      Everybody is looking for happiness.(happiness in general)
·      Nothing compares to the happiness I feel when I help others. (one specific example of happiness)
·      I’m trying to lose weight.(weight in general)
·      I’m trying to lose the weight I gained during my vacation. (specific weight)
#43 – Both / Either / Neither
Don’t say: “I speak neither French or German.” Say: “I speak neither French nor German.”
Both... and is used for two things:
·      I speak both English and Spanish.
Either... or is used for one thing, but not the other.
·      You can choose one flavor of ice cream - either chocolate or vanilla.
Neither... nor is used for not two things. (You can’t use “neither... or” – it’s incorrect.).
·      I don’t like soccer. I don’t like tennis. I like neither soccer nor tennis.
#44 – Borrow / Lend Don’t say: “Could you borrow me a pencil?”
Say: “Could you lend me a pencil?”
Or: “Could I borrow a pencil?”
Borrow is to receive something temporarily.
Lend is to give something temporarily.
Imagine the bank gives you $10,000, you will need to pay the money back to the bank later.
·      The bank lent me $10,000.
·      I borrowed $10,000 from the bank.
Lend is often used with to:
·      Maria lent her dictionary to Daniel.
Borrow is often used with from:
·      Daniel borrowed a dictionary from Maria.
#45 – Enough
Don’t say: “This box isn’t enough big for all the books.” Say: “This box isn’t big enough for all the books.” Don’t say: “We don’t have people enough for a soccer team.” Say: “We don’t have enough people for a soccer team.”
Enough goes after adjectives, adverbs, and verbs. Enough goes before nouns. Adjective + enough:
Are you old enough to see this movie? Adverb + enough:
You sing well enough to be a professional! Verb + enough:
I play the piano, but I don’t practice enough. Enough + noun:
There aren’t enough chairs for everybody to sit down. I don’t have enough information to make a decision. Do you have enough money to buy that motorcycle?
#46 – Listen / Hear
Don’t say: “I listened a great new song on the radio.” Say: “I heard a great new song on the radio.”
There are two differences between listen and hear:

Listen is often a prolonged action, but hear is just one moment in time. For example:While I was listening to the news, I heard that there was a plane crash outside the city.
(“listening to news” = continuous action, “heard that” = one specific moment)
Listen is often intentional, but hear is often unintentional.After I heard a loud noise downstairs, I listened carefully to see if a robber had entered
the house. (“heard a loud noise” = without trying; “listened carefully” = trying) Listen is always followed by to:
I’m listening to a podcast.I can’t hear the TV. Turn up the volume. (don’t use “to” after “hear”)
#47 – See / Watch / Look
Don’t say: “I can’t look anything. It’s too dark.” Say: “I can’t see anything. It’s too dark.”
Look, see, and watch are all actions you do with your eyes, but there are small differences: Look is to direct your attention towards something. “Look” is intentional, and it is often used in
this form: look + at + (object):Look at the sunset – it’s so beautiful!
See is to perceive with your eyes, but it is not intentional (you don’t “try” to see, it just happens):
I saw a car accident while driving home from work.Watch is to keep your eyes on something (usually something that is moving) for a long time. It
is intentional.I’m watching TV.
I watched the baseball game.
#48 – Sell / Sale
Don’t say: “There’s a big sell at my favorite store.” Say: “There’s a big sale at my favorite store.”
Sell is a verb and sale is a noun:
·      I’m going to sell my car and buy a new one.
·      She’s selling bottles of water at the football game.
·      Yesterday, I sold all of my old college textbooks on the internet.
·      The bookstore is having a Christmas sale - everything is 20% off. (=20% discount).
·      The sales of our new product are slowly increasing.
·      This watch is normally $100, but it’s on sale for $70.
# 49 – Only / Alone / Lonely
·      Don’t say: “My parents and brother have gone out, so I’m home only.”
·      Say: “My parents and brother have gone out, so I’m home alone.”
·      Alone means “by yourself” – there is nobody else around you.Only means “just one” and can be used with people, objects, or actions:
·      Dana was the only one who understood today’s English lesson. I have only one pair of sunglasses.I didn’t have a lot of money, so I only bought one T-shirt.
·      Lonely means “by yourself and feeling sad and isolated” – it is a negative emotion. I was lonely on my first day of class because I didn’t have any friends.
#50 – Ever / Never
Don’t say: “I’ve ever been to Japan.”
Say: “I’ve been to Japan.” (positive)
Say: “I’ve never been to Japan.” (negative)
Ever is used only in present perfect questions, to ask if a person has done something at any time in their life:
Have you ever eaten Thai food?Yes, I have. / No, I haven’t.(don’t use “ever” in the answer)Have your parents ever taken singing lessons? Yes, they have. / No, they haven’t.
Has Bill ever studied abroad? Yes, he has. / No, he hasn’t.
In present perfect statements, don’t use “ever”:
I’ve worked for three different companies in my life. We’ve been to London twice.She’s taken a few private English classes.She’s ever taken a few private English classes.
You can use never in statements:
·      I’ve never liked math.
·      They’ve never owned a car.
·      My best friend’s never been married.
#51 – Enjoy / Like / Love
Don’t say: “I enjoy to travel.”
Say: “I enjoy travelling.”
Like and love can be followed by the –ing form or the to form of the verb:
·      I like swimming = I like to swim.
·      She loves reading = She loves to read.
However, enjoy can only be followed by the –ing form.
·      We enjoy taking long walks on the beach.
·      I enjoyed talking to you the other day.
·      I’ll enjoy having some time to relax when I go on vacation next month.
#52 – Everybody
Don’t say: “Everybody have problems.”
Say: “Everybody has problems.”The words everybody, anybody, somebody, and nobody all take the singular form of the verb!
·      I don’t know if anybody is in the office right now.
·      How do you react if someone gives you a compliment?
·      Nobody likes the new English teacher.
In general, words that refer to groups of people (club, class, army, family, team, government) are considered singular, because the group is “one thing.”
·      My family is visiting me for the holidays.
·      The basketball team has a new coach.
The one exception is police, which takes the plural form:
·      The police are investigating the murder.
·      Police have arrested three suspects.
To talk about an individual member of the police, we can say policeman or policewoman - or the gender-neutral term police officer.
#53 – Accustomed
Don’t say: “I’m accustomed with cold weather.”
Say: I’m accustomed to cold weather.”
Or: “I’m used to cold weather.”
The preposition that follows accustomed is to, not “with.” It’s also very common to say “I’m used to...” or “I’m not used to...” (in this case, the “s” in “used” is pronounced with a soft “s,” not like “z”).
#54 – Do / Does / Auxiliary Verbs
Don’t say: “What means this word?”
Say: “What does this word mean?”
It’s very common for English learners to forget the auxiliary verb in questions. Almost any question in English can be formed using the QUASM structure:
·      QU estion word – “What”
·      A uxiliary verb – “Does”
·      S ubject – “This word”
·      M ain verb – “Mean?”
#55 – Leave
Don’t say: “We need to leave to the airport.” Say: “We need to leave for the airport.”
In English, we leave for a place and arrive from a place:
·      I’m leaving for Paris tomorrow.
·      We just arrived from New York.
#56 – Although / But
Don’t say: “Although my teacher was good, but I failed the class.”
Say: “My teacher was good, but I failed the class.”
Or: “Although my teacher was good, I failed the class.”


#57 – Although / Though Even though
Don’t say: “I like studying English. I get nervous when I speak, although.”
Say: “I like studying English, although I get nervous when I speak.”
Or: “I like studying English. I get nervous when I speak, though.”
Although and even though are used at the beginning of a sentence or clause – never at the end of a sentence.
Though is also used at the beginning of a sentence or clause, and it can be used at the end of a sentence.
#58 – Possibility / Opportunity
Don’t say: “I have the possibility to travel to London next month.”
Say: “I have the opportunity to travel to London next month.”
With the verb have, always use opportunity. The word possibility is more often used with “there is”:
·      There’s a possibility I might travel to London next month.
Also, possibility is neutral – it means maybe the event will happen, and maybe it will not happen.
The word opportunity is a little more positive, it expresses the possibility for something good.
So we can use possibility with good or bad things, but opportunity is usually used only for good things:
·      I’m worried about the possibility of losing my job.
·      Studying abroad is a great opportunity to see the world while learning a language.
#59 – Success / Succeed / Successful
Don’t say: “The project was success.”
Say: “The project was a success.”
Or: “The project was successful.”
It’s important to know the difference between nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs in English.
Success is the noun.
succeed is the verb.
successful is the adjective
And successfully is the adverb.
#60 – Big / Large
Don’t say: “I’ll have a big coffee with milk.” Say: “I’ll have a large coffee with milk.”
With food, drink, and clothing sizes, we use large, not big:
·      I’d like to exchange this T-shirt – it’s too small. It’s a size medium, and I need a large.
·      Could you bring me a large soda?
·      I’d like a large Greek salad.
#61 – Should / Could / Would
Don’t say: “If I were you, I should go to the doctor.”
Say: “If I were you, I would go to the doctor.” Or: “You should go to the doctor.”
In general, should and shouldn’t are used to give advice:
·      You should get more exercise.
·      He shouldn’t spend so much time on the computer.
·      We should stop smoking.
However, in the structure “If I were you...” we use would (or ‘d)
If I were you, I would get more exercise.If I were him, I wouldn’t spend so much time on the computer. If I were her, I’d stop smoking.
Could is used in three cases:
a.   Ability in the past“When I was a child, I could play soccer really well.”
b.   Possibilities in the future
·                     “How can we publicize our new product?”
·                     “We could try an online advertising campaign.”
c.Polite requests
·            Could you please open the window? It’s hot in here.”
#62 – Most / Most of
Don’t say: “Most of women like chocolate.” Say: “Most women like chocolate.”
If you are talking about a large, general group, use most. If you are talking about a specific group, use most of:
·      Most students study hard. (general group).
·      Most of the students in this class study hard. (specific group).
·      I like most American movies. (general group)
·      I don’t like most of the movies directed by Quentin Tarantino (specific group)
·      I’m allergic to most perfumes. (general group)
·      Most of the perfumes in this store are expensive. (specific group)

#63 – Some / Any
Don’t say: “I don’t have some money.”
Say: “I don’t have any money.”
“Some” is used in positive statements. “Any” is used in negative statements and questions:
-       Positive: I want some bread.
-       Negative: I don’t want any bread.
-       Question: Do we have any bread in the house?
We can only use some in negative statements and questions when offering or asking for something:
·      Would you like some bread? (offering something)
·      Can I have some ketchup for my fries, please? (asking for something).

#64 – Too / Too much / Too many.
Don’t say: “That computer is too much expensive.”
Say: “That computer is too expensive.”
Use too before adjectives:This book is too difficult for me.
·      I can’t lift this suitcase.
·      It’s too heavy.
Use too much before uncountable nouns:
·      You put too much butter in this cake.
·      I have too much homework – I can’t finish it all!
Use too many before plural countable nouns:
·      I have too many things to do.
·      There are too many people in this bar.
#65 – Good at / Good with
Don’t say: “I’m good in math.”
Say: “I’m good at math.”
To talk about ability for subjects and actions, we use good at and bad at (with the –ing form if talking about an action):
·      I’m good at skiing.
·      I’m bad at snowboarding.
·      He’s good at history.
·      He’s bad at biology.
To talk about ability to have good relationships with people, children, and animals, we use good with and bad with:
·      She’s an excellent salesperson – she’s very good with people.
·      He’s great with children – he has 6 kids of his own.
·      I wanted to be a veterinarian because I’ve always been good with animals.

#66 – How/ What... like?
Don’t say: “How is the weather like in your country?”
Say: “What is the weather like in your country?”
Or: “How is the weather in your country?”
You can say either How is...? or What is... like?
#67 – Near / Close
Don’t say: “My house is near to the beach.”
Say: “My house is near the beach.”
Or: “My house is close to the beach.”
Near and close to are the same – but don’t mix them and say “near to”!
#68 – As far as / As long as
Don’t say: “As long as I know, Dana is single.” Say: “As far as I know, Dana is single.”
Use “as long as” for:
a.   Time
“I’ll stay with you as long as you want.”
b.   Requirement
“You can go to the party as long as you’re back by 11 PM.”

Use “as far as” for:
a.   Degree or distance
“I’ll walk with you as far as the corner.”
b.   Opinion (in the expression “as far as I’m concerned”)
“As far as I’m concerned, he owes me an apology.”
c.    To limit your statement
“As far as I know, Barry has never been outside the country.”
“As far as I can remember, Emily’s the only person I’ve met who doesn’t like pizza.”
#69 – Silent / Quiet
Don’t say: “She’s very silent.”
Say: “She’s very quiet.”
·      Quiet means “very little noise,”
·      Silent means “no noise.” When describing someone’s personality, use “quiet.”
Also, a person can “talk quietly” (speaking in a low voice, not very loud) but not “talk silently” (this is impossible!)
#70 – Beside / Besides
Don’t say: “Chris sat down besides Paul.”
Say: “Chris sat down beside Paul.”
Or: “Chris sat down next to Paul.” (more common)
Beside is a preposition of location – it means “next to” or “on the side of”
·      There’s a printer beside the computer.
·      “Where are the scissors?”“Over there – beside the markers.”

Besides is an adverb that means “in addition to”:
·      We have two nice houses near the Bitexco building besides one big flat in the countryside .
·      Besides can also be a preposition that means “except for”:Jenny has no friends besides her sister. (= Jenny’s sister is her only friend)
#71 – Thankfully / Hopefully
Don’t say: “Hopefully, we didn’t have to wait long for an appointment.”
Say: “Thankfully, we didn’t have to wait long for an appointment.”
You can say
-       Hopefully about something you want to happen (but you do not know if it will happen or not).
-       Thankfully about an established fact.
Both “hopefully” and “thankfully” can be used in the past, present, or future – but
a.    Thankfully is about confirmed facts.
b.   Hopefully is about unconfirmed facts:

Future:
a.   Hopefully, this project will be finished by the end of the month.(= I’m not sure if it will be finished by the end of the month or not, but I want it to).
b.   Thankfully, this project will be finished by the end of the month.(= This project will definitely be finished by that time)
Present:
a.   Hopefully, there isn’t a long line at the bank.(= I’m not yet at the bank, so I don’t know if the line is long or not)
b.   Thankfully, there isn’t a long line at the bank.(= I’m at the bank now, and I can see that the line is not long)
Past:
a. Hopefully, George got home safely last night.  (= I don’t know if he got home safely or not).
b. Thankfully, he got home with me safely last night. (we got home together and we were safe).
#72 – Raise / Rise / Arise
Don’t say: “The government is going to rise taxes.” Say: “The government is going to raise taxes.”
Rise means “to go up” or “to increase” – by itself. There is only a subject; there is no object.
·      The sun rises at 6:00 AM.
·      Energy consumption rose 20% this year.
Raise means “to move something to a higher position” or “to increase something,” so there are two entities, the subject (which performs the action) and the object (the thing that is moved or increased):
·      I raised my hand to answer the teacher’s question.(subject = I; object = my hand).
·      The state is raising the minimum age to get a driver’s license – from 16 to 18. (subject = the state; object = the minimum age to get a driver’s license)
Raise can also be used in a more metaphorical sense:
·      He raised some objections to the project proposal.(= he expressed the objections).
·      Our baseball team raised money for a local orphanage. (= collected money from donations)
·      My parents raised their voices during the argument. (= spoke louder)The college is raising the bar for new applicants.(= increasing the standards)
Arise is similar to rise, but is more formal and abstract. It can also be used to mean “appear” or “result from”:
·      Several important questions arose during the meeting.
·      I’d like to work in Japan, if the opportunity arises.
·      A new spirit of hope has arisen among the country’s people.
#73 – Each of / All of
Don’t say: “Each of the students have a computer.”
Say: “Each of the students has a computer.”
Or: “All of the students have computers.”
Although “students” is plural, “each” is singular – we are considering each student separately – so sentences with “each of” take the singular form of the verb:
·      Each of these postcards is from a different country.
·      Each of the pieces of furniture in the store is hand-crafted.
Sentences with “all of” use the singular form of the verb if the noun is uncountable, and the plural form of the verb if the noun is countable and plural:
·      All of the beer is imported. (beer = uncountable)
·      All of the bottles are recyclable. (bottles = countable and plural)
In general, we use “each of” when we want to emphasize the individuality of the objects, as in the case of the postcards from different countries. We use “all of” when we want to talk about the objects as a group.
#74 – Made of / Made from
Don’t say: “These plates are made from plastic.”
Say: “These plates are made of plastic.”
Use “made of” to talk about the material of an object – wood, plastic, glass, crystal, etc. – which has not gone through very much processing. You can still see the original material.
·      This pen is made of plastic.
·      Your sweater is made of silk, isn’t it?
Use “made from” to talk about one object that came from another, different object:
·      This purse is made from recycled plastic bags.
·      Cheese is made from milk.
·      Wine is made from grapes.
In each of these cases, you can’t see the original materials anymore (plastic bags, milk, or grapes); they have been transformed into a new object.
#75 – Assure / Ensure / Insure
Don’t say: “She ensured me that she’d send me the information as soon as possible.”
Say: “She assured me that she’d send me the information as soon as possible.”
Assure means to tell another person something to remove doubt or anxiety.
·      I was afraid we’d miss the flight, but my husband assured me we’d get to the airport in time.
Ensure is something you do to guarantee a specific result.
·      We ordered 10 pizzas to ensure that there would be enough food for everybody.
Insure (spelled with an “I”) is when you get a financial plan to pay for any damage or loss to a person or thing. This is related to the word “insurance,” such as health insurance, car insurance, etc.
·      Our house is insured against fires, floods, and theft.
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