Looking for a way to make your English sound more "native"? This is the blog for you!

Exam Preparation, Learning English, Life Skills, Study Abroad, Teaching English
< 2 Minutes

By Alex Norman

Let’s brush up on Idioms!

What is an idiom?

An idiom is a commonly used expression, sometimes referred to as a ‘figure of speech’. With idioms, we can’t rely on the individual words to give us the meaning. An idiom has a different meaning to the literal meaning of the individual words.

Why do we use idioms?

We can use idioms to express ourselves in a more dynamic and creative way. They can add an element of complexity into our speech, and they are very common in English!

Let’s take a look at some examples...

Idiom Meaning Example sentence
Over the
Very happy She must be over the moon
that she passed her exam!
Under the
Not feeling
feeling ill
I felt under the
weather when I had a cold.
The best
sliced bread
that is
good /
The children thought their new
bikes were the best thing since
sliced bread.
Piece of
Piece of cake
To be very easy
My driving test was
a piece of cake.

Some of our fantastic students wrote about their experience at English Path using some of the idioms we discussed. Let’s take a look!

“Once I arrived in Leeds, I was on cloud 9. Settling in was hard work but I remembered to keep my chin up. When I finally attended English Path, finding my way around was a piece of cake. I’ve been on top of the world ever since I’ve been here.” - Kuwait

“.. I was a bit apprehensive about studying as it might not be a piece of cake, especially hearing oral speech but I had nothing to do but keep my chin up and get up and go” - Ukraine

“During my week at English Path I was on cloud 9. I really loved the friendly community here and supporting staff. Even though leaving my family and Kuwait was hard but every cloud has a silver lining” - Kuwait

“I tried to apply for internship as a project manager to some company in London, but they had no project for me to take, but as you know when one door closes another opens and I received mail from English Path that they got a space for me. News they would like to put me in group higher makes me feel fine and dandy.” - Ukraine

Seems like it was a piece of cake for these students! I’d say they’ve passed with flying colours.

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