Welcome to the Grammar Gameshow! Test your knowledge in this crazy quiz! The presenter is a bit strange, the points don’t make sense and the prizes could use some improvement, but at least the grammar is correct!
All good things must come to an end, or so they say. So as we bring this series to a close, here is a collection of our highlights, out takes and bloopers for you to enjoy. All wrapped around some excellent phrasal verbs! Can you guess what they are? Do you know them all? What goes on behind the camera? Find out all in this episode of the Grammar Gameshow!
Phrasal verbs, or as they’re sometimes known, multi-word verbs, are very common in English. They’re formed of a main verb and a particle – a preposition or an adverb – or sometimes a main verb and two particles. There are a number of basic ideas to consider in understanding phrasal verb grammar.
Transitive or intransitive?
A transitive verb needs an object, an intransitive one does not need an object. Some phrasal verbs are transitive, some are not and some can be both.
Transitive = I broke up with him.
Intransitive = My car broke down.
If it takes an object, can the object go between the verb and preposition, or not? An object pronoun must go between the verb and particle. Some phrasal verbs are inseperable.
Can you switch the TV off?
Can you switch off the TV?
Can you switch it off?
I broke up with him. (Inseperable)
Phrasal verbs can have more than one meaning, so pay attention to the context:
To take off (remove) your shirt.
The plane took off (flew into the sky).
I need to take off (leave) or I will miss my train.
I’m tired. I need to take time off (take a holiday).
From this episode:
Catch someone out: put someone in a difficult situation
Caught out: put in a difficult situation
He got caught out by the sudden rainstorm. He got very wet. (passive)
The teacher caught her out by her a question when she wasn’t paying attention.
Let someone down: disappoint someone by not meeting expectations
Let down: disappoint by not meeting expectations
We were let down by the weather when we wanted to go to the beach. (passive)
He doesn’t mean to arrive late, but somehow he always lets me down.
Come out with: suddenly and unexpectedly speak or say something
He came out with the truth at the last moment.
I thought they weren’t listening, but they suddenly came out with the correct answer!
Slip up: make a mistake. Also: mess up, foul up and screw up.
I slipped up by mentioning the surprise birthday party.
She really messed up when she locked herself out of her car.
Clown around: behave in a silly or foolish way. Also: muck around, mess about, monkey around and goof off.
Stop clowning around and get to work.
If you spent less time monkeying around and more time studying, you’d pass your exam!
Catch on: understand or comprehend
Just keep explaining and he’ll catch on eventually.
I don’t speak French, but I think I caught on to what they were saying to me.
Plug away: try hard to do something difficult
He kept plugging away until he learned to drive.
She’s been plugging away at her PhD for years.
For more information, a quiz and other episodes, visit: https://www.bbc.co.uk/learningenglish/english/course/tgg/unit-1/session-31