Britlish
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Britlish Library - 34 Microlearning Lessons

If you have been involved in eLearning for any length of time, you will undoubtedly have come across the term, microlearning. Microlearning is a holistic approach to skill-based learning and education that deals with a topic in small learning units which are easy for the student to complete. You can think of each microlearning lesson as the piece of a jigsaw puzzle. Microlearning is the opposite of traditional learning where lessons are an hour or more long and which expect the student to absorb huge amounts of new information.

34 Microlearning Lessons

Alphabetical Categories

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A look at how we ask for a train ticket in Britain. This lesson looks at some common vocabulary of train travel including arrivals and departures, first or second class, platforms, single and return tickets, through trains and changes, and tickets. The lesson has a role playing component that will give you the chance to practice a typical, simple conversation about buying a train ticket.

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Learn how to order food in a typical restaurant in British English. In this lesson we will look at some vocabulary, do a listening exercise, a listening and reading exercise, a conversation simulation, and look at how to sound polite in a restaurant setting. The vocabulary includes alky, delicious, dump, fancy, filling, full, menu, order, pretty, pudding, seafood, slice, soft drinks, sparkling,...

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Chickens have always been an important part of British life since the first were introduced to the island during the pre-Roman Iron Age. Romans made them more popular as a food source, particularly for egg production, after Claudius invaded Britain in the first century AD. Today, chickens are the most widespread livestock animal not only in the world but also in Britain. Because of their import...

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The two words adapt and adopt, and their derivatives, are often confused by students. This lesson will look at how we use the two words and what the differences are between them. We will look at the words: adapt, adapted, adapting, adaption, adaptation, adapter, readapt, adaptive, adaptable, adapted, adaptive, adopt, adoption, adopter, adoptee, readopt, adoptable, adoptive...

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There are several fixed expressions using prepositions in English with which we talk about the orientation of things. If you have ever put on a jumper to find that the front is on your back and the back is on your front, or the inside is showing and the outside is hidden, then these expressions are important for you. In this lesson you will learn about inside out, back to front, upside down...

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Fleece is a man-made fabric made from a plastic fibre called polyester. The polyester fleece fabric was first created in the 1970s by the company Malden Mills. As Malden Mills chose not to patent their invention, the inexpensive fleece was soon available to everyone and its popularity has since far exceeded that of wool. This lesson looks at vocabulary associated with fleeces and wool.

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To say that things are in a row means that they are arranged in a line next to one another either in space or time. By extension, the idiomatic expression, in a row, means that several events happen consecutively, one after the other. This lesson will help you to use this common expression. We need to be careful with the word row, however, as it has several meanings a...

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Just as Eskimos have many words for snow, apparently, so, too, do the British, wearied by overwork, have many words for being tired such as drained, exhausted, fatigued, knackered, spent, tired out and worn out. This lesson will help you to learn, remember, and use these words without becoming exhausted in the process.

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The lesson, Do or Make, will introduce you to the uses of the verbs do or make and this lesson will give you some revision of some common collocations with these verbs. The collocations include: a bad job, a comment, a confession, a degree, a fortune, a good job, a joke, a life, a list, a living, a loss, a noise, a point,...

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We have quite a number of words for offspring, or children, and this lesson aims to show you all the common ones and help you to use them correctly. As well as the names for the young of various common animals, the lessons looks at the words: child, children, baby, young, little one, issue, nipper, fruit of your loins, ...

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There are a group of what we can call the worth words in English which cause confusion for many students and which are worth taking a closer look at. These words are worth, worthy, and worthwhile, as well as the expression worth it. In this lesson, I thought it would be worthwhile looking at how each of these words and expressions i...

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Many students see the letter O and feel that it should be pronounced like the O in on /ɒn/ or clock /ˈklɒk/. This lesson will show you that many common words are not pronounced as you might think. The words in this lesson include: clock, funny, god, honey, London, money, monkey, moth, son, sun, waffle, wag, wallet, wand, wander, want, warrant, warrior, wash, wasp, watch, wax, ...

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We have many idioms in English. One of them is a taste of your own medicine. This common idiom has its roots in Ancient Rome. Gaius Julius Phaedrus lived in the 1st century and translated the fables of Aesop into Latin. He also wrote many fables of his own in the style of Aesop, one of which is the source of the English idiom we are looking at in this lesson.

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There is a group of words in English which I will call the *thing words. These words are anything, something, everything, and nothing. If I’ve learned anything about them, I’ve learned that they cause confusion for students, so I thought I ought to make a lesson to tell you everything about them. Everything you ...

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If you have ever made a mistake or feel that you have faults, then this lesson is for you. You will learn how to use the words, blunder, error, failing, fault, faux pas, flaw, guilty, mistake, to blame, and weakness, without making any mistakes when you do so.

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For the entire duration of the universe you did not exist. Then, one day, you came into existence at the moment of your birth. Now, you are growing older and one day you will die. It’s the one thing in this world that we can be 100% certain about. Is it morbid to think about death? I don’t think so. In fact, I often contemplate my own demise. There is no point in hiding from the fac...

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GPT-3 is a neural network created by OpenAI which uses an autoregressive language model and deep learning to produce text that is indistinguishable from that produced by a human being. I decided to pose a question to the GPT-3 AI to test its capabilities. The question I posed to the AI was: What does it feel like to be a butterfly? The answer I got back was interesting, to say the least. I used...

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I have designed this lesson to look at the vocabulary of wealth. Whether you are poor, wealthy, or stinking rich, you will learn much about the words we use to describe people who do have money. You will also learn about some common portmanteau words. If you don’t know what a portmanteau word is, you really do need to do this lesson. The vocabulary of wealth we’ll look at includes: ...

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Whether you have money or not, there is a lot of vocabulary in English to do with it. This lesson will help you talk about being careful with your money to being miserly with it. Whether you are generous with your money, or a total Scrooge, you will find the vocabulary in this lesson useful.

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We all seem to be worried these days. We're worried about the coronavirus. We are worried about the effects of the virus on the economy. We are worried about our futures. Worries are a natural human response to circumstances which arise because, unlike most other animals, we are capable not only of agonising over the past, but also of looking into the future and thinking about how things might ...

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Many English multisyllable words are made up of many parts including prefixes and suffixes, and if you learn the most common prefixes and suffixes, you can expand your vocabulary dramatically. The word unpredictability has two secondary stresses as well as the main stress that is found in all English words. It’s unusual for a word to have more than one secondary stress, but this ...

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In this lesson: We will look at how to distinguish between teen and ty numbers. We will look at the stress patterns in words. We will look at stress shifts in English words. We will look at making syllables prominent for effect. Whether it's thirty or thirteen, forty or fourteen, fifty or fifteen, or anywhere up to nine...

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Say the words soft and drinks in isolation and we hear the /t/ at the end of soft. We rarely hear the two words in isolation, however, and when we bring them together as soft drinks, we no longer hear the /t/ sound. This is an example of elision, or deletion of sounds at word boundaries. This lesson will help you to use this elision to sound more natural when you spea...

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Words that begin with plum* have some radically different pronunciations which confuses a lot of students. This lesson came from a request by Spyridon, a student of mine in Australia, who was perplexed by the pronunciation. I created this lesson to make sure that nobody need ever be confused by these words again. The lesson contains the most common plum* words including, p...

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Words like hundred, thousand, million, billion, and trillion cause confusion for students who are not sure if they should use hundreds, thousands, millions, billions, and trillions instead. This lesson will help you to avoid this mistake. It gives you the simple rules to follow and some exercises to help y...

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There is a set of words in English which end in the letters age and which cause pronunciation problems for students. Students see the letter combination age and try to pronounced the ends of these words as the word age. Few of these words do end with age and most end in / ɪdʒ /. This lesson will help you to make sure you always pronounce the words correctly.

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What I call irregular F plurals are nouns that end in the /f/ sound and are irregular plurals. Words like leaf, wife, and wolf. Not all nouns that end in /f/ are irregular plurals, however. Words like gulf, turf, and clef are regular plurals. Regular plurals in English simply add an S to the noun. Boy become boys, girl ...

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Comfortable is not an easy word to say, is it? While comfortable only has 3 syllables, many students try to use 4. Comfortable is so uncomfortable a word to pronounce that in 1829 someone decided that it might be better to use only the first syllable and a -y suffix. The informal word comfy was born and what an improvement, I’m sure you’ll agree. ...

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The two confusable quantifiers, few and little, are not as difficult to master as you might think. This microlearning lesson gives you plenty of examples of the use of few, a few, little, and a little, and plenty of practice to help you get them right. You can also watch a video explaining how whether a noun is countable or uncountable deter...

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Do you ever have problems specifying dates in English? This lesson will help put an end to any such issues. I’ll talk you through the way we specify future and past dates in English. I’ll give you some practice with choosing the best way to specify what date you want to talk about. I’ll show you how we reduce complex consonant clusters which form between words in speech segmen...

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In normal fast-spoken speech some words are not prominent, and we only hear the strong form of these words in certain circumstances. The words that we normally only hear the weak form of include was, as well as the other forms of the verb to be: is, am, are, and were. The children’s rhyme, Fuzzy Wuzzy Was a Bear, shows how these weak f...

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Activate the three confusing words, See, Look, and Watch. See, Look, Watch - Vocabulary Activation Pack

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Learn the phrase "in a Jiffy" in just a few minutes. This conversation simulation will help you to see just how we use the common English phrase, in a jiffy.

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This Activation Pack will help you to learn some of the vocabulary we use for talking about debt. You will not only learn about debt now and in the past, but also vocabulary items such as, afford, bank manager, bitter, borrow, buy, checks, cost, debt, do without, essential, every Tom, Dick and Harry, gallon, interest, left over, lend, luxury, money, on the never-never, on tick, pay bac...