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Free Reference Sheet on the verb 'to use'

 
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Lexicon



Joined: 11 Sep 2006
Posts: 153
Location: New Orleans

PostPosted: Tue Sep 12, 2006 7:31 am    Post subject: Free Reference Sheet on the verb 'to use' Reply with quote

I've found that several of my students and those of my fellow teachers doing ESL for native Spanish-speakers have run into a tough time explaining the verb to use. Mainly, the idiomatic usages 'to be used to' and 'to get used to'.

I've created a reference sheet. Feel free to use it if you would like. I hope it helps. It's available in German too if anyone needs it.

http://www.lexiconbusiness.com/resources/the%20verb%20to%20use.pdf

Thanks

Andres
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canuckophile



Joined: 11 Feb 2005
Posts: 33

PostPosted: Mon Feb 12, 2007 10:56 am    Post subject: Koreans have same problem-they understand this Reply with quote

I used to go camping, but now I don't.

explain as

I did it in the past
I don't do it now (any more)

I haven't had to explain "to get used to" but my guess is that it could be explained by saying "I have not done this in the past, and I'm still learning how to do it/learning to like it" something like that

My mom always cooked for me at home.
Now I have to get used to cooking for myself.
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addis



Joined: 13 Feb 2007
Posts: 1
Location: Manchester UK

PostPosted: Tue Feb 13, 2007 10:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is easily resolvable if you know a little Spanish grammar and vocab. Basically if you present ......

'to be used to doing'

....as synonymous with......

'to be accustomed to doing'

....... your Spanish speaking students will be able to grasp it much more easily as they have the cognate ' estar acustombrado a' in their L1. Try it, it works like a charm.

'to get used to' can be presented as 'to grow accustomed to' - again easier to grasp for a Spanish speaker.

By contrast 'used to do' has no direct translation into Spanish. Where we use this to talk about past habits or states they use their past imperfect tense. Trouble is this tense is used for a number of other things. The only way to avoid confusion is by giving lots of very accurate examples and asking them questions around the example.

A simple example.

'I used to suck my thumb'

Questions: Did I suck my thumb once or more times? (no every day!)
Do I suck my thumb now? (No! - laughter hopefully!)

Do a few more examples if necessary. To elicit their own examples, give them questions about things they did in their childhood or cars they've had in the past but no longer have. This will also get the past state element in, not just the repeated past activity.
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