Words and Their Stories programs explain idioms and expressions that many learners of American English find difficult to understand.
8:21 PM - 8:26 PM November 27, 2015
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4:23 PM - 4:28 PM November 12, 2015
7:30 PM - 7:35 PM November 05, 2015
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6:04 PM - 6:09 PM October 22, 2015
5:57 PM - 6:02 PM October 15, 2015
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4:38 PM - 4:43 PM October 01, 2015
5:07 PM - 5:12 PM September 24, 2015
4:03 PM - 4:08 PM September 17, 2015
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6:41 PM - 6:46 PM August 28, 2015
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8:46 PM - 8:51 PM August 07, 2015
4:32 PM - 4:37 PM July 30, 2015
4:05 PM - 4:10 PM July 23, 2015
7:18 PM - 7:23 PM July 16, 2015
The word "Shenandoah" is beautiful and mysterious. It almost sounds like a secret. Shenandoah was the name of a Native American chief. Today it is the name of a national park and river in the U.S. Learn the story behind this word. Also, learn some great adjectives to describe the beauty of nature.
Americans celebrate the holiday of Thanksgiving on the fourth Thursday in November. Family and friends gather around the dinner table, eat a big meal together and say what they are thankful for. It's time to learn the expression, "Bless you!"
Some animals just are not as loved as others. There is a reason cute cat videos are so popular on the Internet and not, oh, let’s say cute snake videos. But they are used in popular idioms!
A fiasco is something that goes completely wrong often in a ridiculous or embarrassing way. It is dramatic and sometimes absurd. These are all important words when talking about fiascos. They are what make fiascos different from other types of failures.
Today we look at the usage and meaning of expressions using the word "hell." They are very common! Find out what happens to a snowball in hell. And learn which road to take to get to hell.
The belief that there is magical power in the metal silver goes back to ancient Greece. In the stories of other cultures, a silver bullet is the only way to defeat monsters like werewolves and witches.
All big events -- from weddings to military operations to school field trips -- involve logistics. Learn what this word means and how to use it against the backdrop of a famous event in U.S. history. Also learn the difference between the words "compliment" and "complement."
Enough horsing around! We finally stop floundering and deliver this week's program, even though it means scapegoating one of our own. Don't be cowed by the topic: these words are fun and will not outfox you.
Do you have an enemy? Hopefully, you don’t. An enemy is someone who hates you and you hate them back. An enemy threatens you, attacks you or tries to harm you. In some languages, there are different words for a personal enemy versus an enemy of war, political enemy or enemy of the state.
We often say, “You can’t pick your family, but you can pick your friends.” This expression means that our friends are the people we choose to have in our lives. They can be so important. This story teaches great ways to talk about the besties, buds and BFFs (Best Friends Forever) in your life.
The brain is a complex and amazing organ. So, it is only natural that the word "brain" is used in many expressions in American English. Check out this Words and Their Stories to learn some brain words. You will also learn a fun brainteaser to share with your friends and family!
There are many expressions in American English to describe the situation of not having much money ... or any money! Learn what it means to "feel the pinch," to be "up against it" and "to throw in the towel." With world economies entering bad times, these expressions could come in handy.
If you think being smart is always a good thing, think again. Smart has many meanings. Read on to find out what they are and the surprising origin of the term Smart Aleck.
In part two of our series on Latin’s influence on American English, we learn more Latin words and phrases. From popular movies to rock songs, Latin is used very frequently in American English.
Unless you pay for a new home in cash, you'll need a mortgage, or "death pledge." On second thought, the word "mortgage" sounds nicer. Find out mortgages and other "deadly" words.
You do not need to spend $50 million on a ticket to the moon. Just close your eyes and come with us to a trip into outer space! Learn idioms that will help you navigate the world of space.
"You're giving me the ...!" The jitters, the creeps, the willies, the heebie-jeebies, goose bumps, butterflies, and a heart attack ... you can give all these things to other people. Are they good or bad? Read on to find out!
Okay, on Words and Their Stories this week we look at one of the most commonly used words in the English language and maybe around the world. But language experts still have no idea where the word "okay" comes from. And that's okay.
We all forget the names of things. Well, don't worry! Read on to learn words for the words you've forgotten! American English has many interesting words for for those times when you just don't know the exact name of something, including ... wait ... what is it called again?
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