Speaking Skills: Talking about holidays
In this week's Premier Skills English podcast, we talk about the latest news from the Premier League and we talk about holidays now the Premier League season has come to a close. I'm going to Spain on holiday this summer and Rich gives me some advice about where to go and what to do. This week, the language focus is on vocabulary connected to holidays and phrases you can use to give recommendations and phrases you can use to respond to recommendations. As always, we also have a new football phrase for you to guess. Enjoy!
Speaking Skills - Talking about Holidays
Jack: Are you going away this summer?
Rich: We’re thinking about going camping in the mountains.
Rich: Yes, in the Pyrenees, between France and Spain. What about you?
Jack: We’re thinking about going to Spain. You live in Spain, Rich. Do you think you could recommend a few places…
Rich: Hello my name’s Rich
Jack: and I’m Jack
Rich: and welcome to this week’s Premier Skills English podcast
Jack: Where we talk about football and help you with your English.
Jack: What’s happening this week, Rich?
Rich: In this week’s podcast, we’re talking about holidays.
Jack: The Premier League season is over and Premier League players have a bit of time off.
Rich: I’ve seen that Paul Pogba is in Mecca in Saudi Arabia, Wayne Rooney is in Barbados and Jamie Vardy is in Dubai.
Jack: It’s great to get some downtime and Rich is going to give me some advice about my summer holiday in this week’s podcast and we’re going to focus on language we use to recommend places to go and things to do.
Rich: And your task is to use this language to give advice about some holiday destinations in your country.
Jack: And if you’re an English teacher, we’ve got a lesson plan with worksheets that you can use in class.
Rich: Before all that let’s look at this week’s headlines.
Rich: Arsenal win FA Cup.
Jack: Arsenal beat Chelsea 2-1 in the FA Cup Final to win the FA Cup for a record 13th time. After the match, Arsenal manager, Arsene Wenger, announced that he will be staying at the club for another two years.
Rich: Huddersfield Town win promotion
Jack: Huddersfield players and fans will enjoy their summer holidays knowing that next season their team will be in the Premier League. The Terriers beat Reading in the play off final to reach the Premier League for the first time.
Rich: Premier League teams pack their bags for Asia Trophy.
Jack: Liverpool, Crystal Palace, West Brom and Leicester City will compete for the Premier League Asia Trophy in July in Hong Kong.
Rich: And there will be Premier Skills coaching events for referees, and Premier Skills coaching courses running at the same time.
Jack: Have you ever been to Hong Kong, Rich?
Rich: I have actually, twice.
Jack: What would you recommend?
Rich: Well, there are loads of places worth seeing and definitely lots of food worth trying. I would recommend going to see Tian Tan Buddha which is also known as Big Buddha - you can take a cable car and if you visit, you should definitely try dim sum. It’s delicious.
Rich: You said earlier that you are going to Spain for your holidays, Jack. Whereabouts are you going to?
Jack: We’re not sure yet. I think I’d like to visit Madrid and maybe Seville in the south. What do you think, Rich? Where are the best places to visit?
Rich: Madrid’s a great place to start. It’s the capital city and I really love it.
Jack: What can you see there?
Rich: The museums are fantastic. The Prado is a must see. It hs one of the world’s biggest collections of European paintings. The Reina Sofia, too - you can see a lot of Picasso’s paintings there including Guernica - that’s a really famous one.
Jack: We’re thinking about going in August. What will the weather be like?
Rich: Hot. In Madrid it could be above 40c.
Jack: I think that might be a bit too hot for us.
Rich: What about Barcelona? It’s a bit cooler and it’s next to the coast.
Jack: We can go to the beach. That sounds better.
Rich: If you go, you must visit Park Guell. It was designed by Gaudi, a famous architect from Catalunya. In fact, you can see many of his designs around Barcelona - including the Sagrada Familia which is a huge church in the middle of the city.
Jack: Hmmm, I’ve seen pictures. It looks pretty spectacular. I’d love to see it in real life.
Rich: Yeah, it is. Another thing, Spain’s got great food.
Rich: There are loads of really great dishes. You should go for some paella - especially if you go near the coast or in Valencia which is where it comes from.
Jack: It’s made from rice, right?
Rich: Yes, but you can get all different types. There are meat versions and seafood versions and vegetarian ones, too. You often see paella made in huge pans for hundreds of people at local festivals in the summer.
Jack: Sounds delicious. I will definitely try it.
Rich: I think you’ll really like the food. There’s a lot of it and sometimes it’s even free.
Jack: Free? I like the sound of that.
Rich: When you order a drink at a bar or in a cafe, you will often get some food for free. It’s called tapas.
Jack: Great! Is there anything that I need to remember or to watch out for?
Rich: You should take lots of sun cream. It can get very hot in the summer.
Jack: Anything else?
Rich: It could be busy. I would book accommodation in advance. You don’t want to sleep on the beach!
Jack: In the last section, Rich gave me lots of advice about a holiday in Spain. He used lots of different phrases to recommend different things. Let’s look at some of those phrases.
Rich: I said ‘You should visit Madrid - the capital’.
Jack: We can use ‘should’ to give advice and to give recommendations. Rich thinks it’s a good idea for me to visit Madrid so he said ‘I should visit Madrid’.
Rich: I also said ‘You must visit Park Guell’. Here I used ‘must’ rather than ‘should’ because I feel more strongly about it. I think it’s a really good idea to visit it. I could also say ‘you have to visit something’ if I want to give a strong recommendation.
Jack: Rich also said ‘The Prado Museum in Madrid is a must see’. He could have said you should see the Prado museum like in the previous example or if he wanted to give a stronger recommendation he could have said you must see or you have to see the Prado museum.
Rich: But ‘must see’ can also be a noun. So you can say something is a must see.
Jack: When you visit Paris, the Eiffel Tower is a must-see.
Rich: Another common word to use to talk about recommendations is ‘would’. I said to Jack ‘I would book your accommodation in advance’. We hear this a lot. I would go there, I wouldn’t eat that, I’d visit this place and so on.
Jack: The word is actually part of a longer phrase. The complete phrase is ‘I would book your accommodation in advance if I were you’, ‘I would go there, if I were you’, ‘I wouldn’t eat that if I were you’. But, we don’t need to say the complete sentence. It’s not necessary.
Rich: When we respond to someone’s recommendation it’s very common to say something like ‘sounds good’ or ‘sounds amazing’.
Jack: Yes, I think this is a really useful phrase to learn. I use it a lot. I’m always saying ‘sounds good’.
Rich: We’ve got a few activities on the page below this podcast for you to take a look at.
Jack: And we would also like to hear about your holidays and some places and things that you would recommend to visit and do in your country.
Rich: And, we’d like to see some of these key phrases in the comments that you write.
Can you work out this week’s football phrase?
Rich: Have you got a football phrase for us this week?
Jack: Yes, I have, but first, last week’s football phrase. The phrase was touchline. The touchline is the line on the pitch where the referee's assistants run and where you take throw-ins from.
Rich: Well done to Liubomyr from Ukraine, Elghoul from Algeria, Emir from Bosnia, Ahmed Adam from Sudan, anhduongspurs from Vietnam, and Kwesimanifest from Ghana!
Rich: What’s this week’s phrase?
Jack: This week’s football phrase is the ***** ******. It means the part of the year when no football is played. In the Premier League the ***** ****** is June and July.
Rich: That’s a difficult phrase this week and for me the most boring part of the year!
Jack: But at least we have our summer holidays!
Rich: Right, that’s all we have time for this week.
Jack: Don’t forget to write your answers to our questions and make a guess at our football phrase in the comments below.
Rich: Bye for now and enjoy your football!
How much did you understand?
In the podcast, Rich and Jack used some words and phrases that might be new for you. You can see two examples here:
Arsene Wenger announced that he has signed a contract extension.
Huddersfield beat Reading in the play off final to reach the Premier League.
There were a few more tricky words in the podcast. Can you remember all of them? Try the activity below, then, listen to the podcast again to hear how we used the words in context. This can really help with understanding.
Language - Holidays
In this week's podcast, Jack and Rich used a lot of vocabulary connected to holidays. Have a look at these sentences from the podcast, do you understand the words in bold?
Are you going away this summer?
Premier League players have a bit of time off.
It's great to get some downtime.
We want you to give some advice about holiday destinations in your country.
Premier League players pack their bags for Asia trophy.
I would book accomodation in advance.
In the activity below, take a look at the words and see how many of the words from above you understood.
Language - Recommending things
In the podcast, Rich recommended places to visit and things to do when he visits Spain on holiday. Here are a couple of examples:
You should visit Madrid - the capital.
You should go for some paella - it's delicious!
The most common word to use to give advice or recommendations is 'should'. This word is followed by the infinitive as you can see in the examples above. But, we don't always use 'should ' for advice. Here are some other ways of giving advice or making recommendations:
You must visit Park Güell in Barcelona.
I would book accommodation in advance.
The Prado museum in Madrid is a must-see.
In the first example, we use 'must'. This is used in the same way as 'should' but is much stronger. You could also use 'have to' here. The second example uses 'would'. This is part of a conditional sentence. The full sentence would include 'if I were you' but it's not necessary to say the whole phrase. The third example is a noun 'a must-see' and is a much more informal phrase.
In this activity, look at the different recommendations and advice and decide which phrase to use.
Holidays - Five things to see or do in your country
In the podcast, Rich gave Jack some recommendations of things to see and do in Spain. We would like you to recommend five things in your country. When you write your comments, in the comments section below, we would like you to use some of the words and phrases that we have looked at in this podcast. You can choose the five things but here are some ideas:
Famous cities and towns (the capital, places in the mountains, next to the sea etc.).
Famous buildings or places of natural beauty.
Popular traditional dishes.
Museums and parks or other places of cultural interest.
Football stadiums and other things connected to football and sport.
What do you think?
In this week’s podcast, Jack and Rich spoke about holidays.
Where do you normally go on holiday in the summer? Where was your best-ever holiday?
If you could go anywhere, where would you go on holiday? Why?
Can you recommend five things in your city or country for visitors to do or see?
Remember to write your guess at this week's football phrase and the questions above in the comments section below.