January 22, 2014

Phrasal Verbs and their different meanings الأفعال الناقصة ومعانيها المختلفة

In today’s post, I’d like to share with you this inforgraphic by Grammar.net to introduce verbs + prepositions and those ‘dreaded’ phrasal verbs!
Take a look at this:
[Infographic provided by Grammar.net]
Are you familiar with these phrasal verbs and those verb + preposition combinations or verb phrases?
Verb Phrases
Here are some example sentences for those verb phrases:
agree with – “I have to agree with Martin on this one. If we don’t act fast, we will lose the contract”.
look forward to – “I look forward to meeting your family next week” (following verb in the                                  +ing form )
“I am looking forward to my holiday next week” (noun)
concentrate on – “Could I have some quiet, please? I need to concentrate on this email.”                                   (noun)
“I am finding it really hard to concentrate on writing this draft                                                   contract”. (following verb in the +ing form )
Phrasal Verbs
And now for some example sentences for the phrasal verbs. The infographic gives you some of the different meanings of each phrasal verb. I have decided to add more meanings to some of the phrasal verbs so that you can see the variety of ways these phrasal verbs can be used.
work out
  • to solve a problem by considering the facts“I can’t work out what to do with this situation.
  • to solve a problem by doing a calculation – “I was born in 1956, you work out my age”.
  • to exercise – “I love working out in the mornings”.
  • to be successful - “I am sure that everything will work out in the end”.
  • to decide or agree on something –  ” We have worked out when to start our course”.
  • used for saying what the actual cost or value is when you calculate it – “Taking the Eurostar works out more expensive than travelling with EasyJet”.
turn down
  • to refuse – “She turned down their job offer”
  • to reduce the volume - “Can you turn down the TV, please?”
  • to ready the bed for sleeping - “Sir, would you like me to turn down the beds?” (This is an old use of the expression but you can still hear it in 5-star or 6-star hotels where this service is still offered)
break down
  • cease to function - “The washing machine has broken down again”.
  • separate into sections – ” The task can be broken down in smaller, manageable sections”.
  • relationships or discussion - “The Economic Talks in Beijing broke down after two days”.
  • become upset, especially in public – “People broke down and cried when they heard the news”.
  • make a door or wall fall - “The police had to break down the door in order to enter the flat”.
use up
  • to consume all of something - “Have you used up all the eggs?”
    (NB: I have never heard of the other example of the use of this phrasal verb as shown in the infographic)
bring up
  • a topic of conversation – “OK, everyone. I’d like to bring up the topic of waste disposal”.
  • raise a child (often used in the passive voice)- “We were brought up to respect our elders”.
  • vomit - “During the car journey, she brought up all her lunch! It was disgusting!”
turn up
  • increase power/sound“It’s so hot in here. Could you please turn up the air conditioning?”
  • arrive (often unexpectedly or with no prior arrangement)“Look who just turned up?” ”You don’t have to make a reservation. You can just turn up”.
  • to find (by accident)“Hey, look what just turned up? I have been looking for these documents everywhere”.
  • to happen unexpectedly- “Don’t worry. Another job offer will turn up when you least expect it”.
I cannot stress enough how important it is to learn the different uses of these phrasal verbs in the context of a sentence and not in isolation. Many of my clients think they need to memorise the uses but I always tell them that to do so is pointless and in fact, meaningless. If there is no context, there is no meaning and therefore will be impossible to remember.
I hope you found this post helpful.