How to Express Yourself with Intermediate Vocabulary

Do you find yourself using the same adjectives over and over again? I'm British and study Spanish, but even when I’m speaking English, I describe experiences as “good”, “nice”, “really good” or “okay” over and over again.

Is it a problem for language learners? I can feel like a bit of an idiot if I describe everything in Spanish as “bueno” or “interesante”, but how much does it matter?

A good narrative does not need a hundred adjectives. Adding little details and your own personality is just as important. At the beginner stage, it is easier to memorise adjectives than to master irregular verbs. When you’re at the intermediate stage, a bigger vocabulary is great, but you should practice or show off all the sentence structures you’ve learned.

How could it work? Are you seeing New Year's Eve fireworks? You could say they were astonishing, incredible or breathtaking, or you say they were “great” and then add a few details:

We loved it! I could have watched it for an hour. It was the perfect end to the day.
This example has simple vocabulary, but demonstrates the strengths of someone with intermediate English. If you don’t know lots of descriptive words, you can still express your reactions.

The best way to improve your vocabulary is by reading and writing as much as you can. You can improve your fluidity by speaking and listening, but your vocab will grow more slowly.

A smaller vocab set does not stop you from expressing yourself: think about your reactions, your opinions and your feelings.
January 15, 2020
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Natalie

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English
globe
United Kingdom
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Speaks:
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German
C2
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Spanish
B1
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Swedish
Hi! I'm Natalie, I'm a qualified ESL teacher from London, and I have a "clear" British accent. I have a degree in English and American literature, and I specialise in helping upper intermediate and advanced English learners. Book a trial lesson if you want to grow your vocabulary, explore cultural issues and hone in on any persistent grammatical errors. I always plan lessons based on students' needs and interests, so tell me about yourself, your English goals and your hobbies! My qualifications: - 120-hour CELTA teaching certificate with real classroom experience - Undergraduate degree in English and American literature - I also have a full time job as a content editor I can help with: - Differences between British English and American English - Total skills practice (reading, writing, listening, speaking) - Learning real English with authentic texts and articles - Grammar exercises to target your weakest areas or persistent errors - Business English for meetings, interviews and emails - Developing your written English to the highest standard Which languages do I speak? - I have advanced German - I have intermediate Spanish - I am always googling the etymology of words to see how languages relate to each other! My own interests include travelling, cooking, reading, history, podcasts, comedy, documentaries, and crime shows.
Flag
English
globe
United Kingdom
time
132
Speaks:
English
Native
,
German
C2
,
Spanish
B1
,
Swedish
Hi! I'm Natalie, I'm a qualified ESL teacher from London, and I have a "clear" British accent. I have a degree in English and American literature, and I specialise in helping upper intermediate and advanced English learners. Book a trial lesson if you want to grow your vocabulary, explore cultural issues and hone in on any persistent grammatical errors. I always plan lessons based on students' needs and interests, so tell me about yourself, your English goals and your hobbies! My qualifications: - 120-hour CELTA teaching certificate with real classroom experience - Undergraduate degree in English and American literature - I also have a full time job as a content editor I can help with: - Differences between British English and American English - Total skills practice (reading, writing, listening, speaking) - Learning real English with authentic texts and articles - Grammar exercises to target your weakest areas or persistent errors - Business English for meetings, interviews and emails - Developing your written English to the highest standard Which languages do I speak? - I have advanced German - I have intermediate Spanish - I am always googling the etymology of words to see how languages relate to each other! My own interests include travelling, cooking, reading, history, podcasts, comedy, documentaries, and crime shows.
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