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ESL forum > Ask for help > vocabulary question    

vocabulary question



Pedro14
Spain

vocabulary question
 
Hi there, I wonder if you could help me out with some questions. "But are all old wives´ tales false, or does modern science back any of them up? I´ve been to see GP, Dr Jane Turner to ask if there´s any scientific proof for any of these common myths." One student of mine asked me about the structure "I´ve been to see". Unfortunately, I couldn´t give any explanation because even though I understand what it means, I´m not familiar with this structure. Under what name can I find it in a grammar book? 

On the other hand, yesterday while doing a listening comprehension exercise from the series New English File one of the speakers said: "If I have a free evening, I meet with friends." I´ve always told my students the correct way of using the verb "meet" is without the preposition "with"; and if they want to use it, they should say "meet up with". I wonder if it is correct now to say "I meet with my friends every Sunday evening." 

How would you express this idea in English? A: Do you dislike snakes? B: I don´t dislike them but I respect them. I don´t know if the verb "respect" is used correctly here. I told my student to say "I´m a bit scared of them" instead. I didn´t know how to translate "dar respeto" into English. 

Thanks in advance.

31 Jan 2019      



cunliffe
United Kingdom

I´m not good with grammar labels ...But ´I´ve been to see´, is that the present perfect of ´to be´? I have noticed we often use this when the idea is actually ´to go´. E.g. The past simple: I went to see the doctor. The present perfect (more recent action), ´I´ve been to see the doctor...´ There is a difference between this and ´I´ve gone to see the doctor.´ The former implies that you have been and now you are back and the latter implies you are not back...maybe you left a note: I´ve gone to the shops´ - you are still there. ´I´ve been to the shops´ - you are back. Oh dear...hope this is helping!
 
In Br English, you are right. ´I meet friends´ or ´meet up with´. I have heard ´meet with´ but in a more formal context: You might meet with your tutor to discuss your grades. I wouldn´t say ´I meet with my friends every Sunday´. Definitely lose the ´with´.
 
I don´t know how natural that sentence sounds in Spanish, but it is slightly odd in English (I don´t like snakes, but I respect them.) ´I don´t like snakes, but I wouldn´t mess with them..´ or ´I´m wary of them´. Or your phrase. Or maybe respect is OK. I knew a chap once who didn´t like cats and he used that actual phrase.´I don´t like cats, but I respect them.´  

31 Jan 2019     



yanogator
United States

I agree with Lynne, and would like to add some.
 
In the situation Lynne describes, the difference between "gone to see" (not back yet) and "been to see" (have returned) is exactly right, but it doesn´t exactly fit your situation. In your myth-busting example, "I´ve been to see GP" is simply a colloquial way of saying "I´ve met with", in order to make it sound more casual. I don´t think you´ll find it in grammar books, because, as I said, it´s a colloquial usage. "been to see" is a conversational way of saying "visited for a purpose".
 
I´ve been to see my sister in the hospital, and she has improved tremendously.
 
I´ve been to see your mother, and she says you should call her.
 
In US English, "meet with friends" is more common than "meet friends" - just the opposite of the British usage.
 
I agree with Lynne that "respect snakes" sounds a little odd, but only a little. I´m not afraid of snakes, but I keep a healthy distance. I definitely wouldn´t tell someone not to use "respect", but to be aware that it isn´t what most people would say.
 
Bruce 

31 Jan 2019     



cunliffe
United Kingdom

I like ´keep a healthy distance´.
 
And thank heavens for Brucee!  

31 Jan 2019     



Aisha77
Spain

Hi, I write just to post a link to YouTube that migh help u to understand well about "meet", "meet with", and "meet up (with)"
 

31 Jan 2019     



Pedro14
Spain

Thank you all for answering to all my questions in such a clear way. I do appreciate your help. Have a nice weekend!

1 Feb 2019