English as a Second Language/word choice

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Question
1.When I studied English on my own, I had to look up a new word in the dictionary more than five times to memorize it. But when I took an English class in school, I could remember a word easily after the teacher had explained it to me just once.

(1.)In the first sentence, what can be taken in place of “on my own” and “look up a new word in the dictionary”?

“By myself” or “alone”?  “Refer to the dictionary” or “consult the dictionary”?

(2.) In the second, may I use the past tense after “the teacher”? (I could remember a word easily after the teacher explained it to me just once.)


2.(continued) Learning with a teacher really does make a difference. In conclusion, having a teacher makes learning easier, more effective and fun. Most importantly, the knowledge gained stays with you.

(1.)    Is it appropriate to use “in conclusion” in the second sentence? I wonder if I should combine the two sentences into one.

Learning with a teacher really does make a difference because having a teacher makes learning easier….

Learning with a teacher really does make a difference in the way that having a teacher makes learning easier…

(2.) In the last sentence, what is another way to say “the knowledge gained stays with you”?

“You can retain the knowledge you gained for a long time”?



3.   I never go to the gym because I prefer to exercise outdoors and it saves money.

In the sentence, should I say, “…and it’s a great way to save money”?

4. I usually exercise outdoors, but sometimes I go to the gym when it’s rainy or too cold outside. This way, I get exercise on a regular basis and don’t have an excuse to get lazy.

May I change “don’t” to “won’t”?


5. I have never traveled alone because I prefer to have a companion on a trip.

In the sentence, may I say, “I prefer to have company on a trip” or “I prefer to have someone accompany me on a trip”?

6. I often travel alone with a backpack to visit interesting places and see beautiful sights.

Does it mean the same if I say “I often travel by myself with a backpack…”?


7. To relieve stress, I recommend taking a walk where it’s very green.

Does it mean the same if I say “taking a walk in nature”?


8.I often panic when an earthquake occurs.

In the sentence, may I say also, “I am often panicky” or “I am often panicked” or “I am often in a panic”? What is the difference?

Answer
1.When I studied English on my own, I had to look up a new word in the dictionary more than five times to memorize it. But when I took an English class in school, I could remember a word easily after the teacher had explained it to me just once.

(1.)In the first sentence, what can be taken in place of “on my own” and “look up a new word in the dictionary”?

“By myself” or “alone”?  “Refer to the dictionary” or “consult the dictionary”? by myself and either refer to or consult. I'd stick to "look up" though - sounds more natural than the alternatives.

(2.) In the second, may I use the past tense after “the teacher”? (I could remember a word easily after the teacher explained it to me just once.) yes


2.(continued) Learning with a teacher really does make a difference. In conclusion, having a teacher makes learning easier, more effective and fun. Most importantly, the knowledge gained stays with you.

(1.)    Is it appropriate to use “in conclusion” in the second sentence? Yes
I wonder if I should combine the two sentences into one.

Learning with a teacher really does make a difference because having a teacher makes learning easier….

Learning with a teacher really does make a difference in the way that having a teacher makes learning easier…

Either one of the above combinations are better (in my opinion) than the original text. If I had to choose I'd choose the first one (the one with because)

(2.) In the last sentence, what is another way to say “the knowledge gained stays with you”?

“You can retain the knowledge you gained for a long time”? That's a decent alternative.



3.    I never go to the gym because I prefer to exercise outdoors and it saves money.

this sounds odd

In the sentence, should I say, “…and it’s a great way to save money”? see below

I'd say

I never go to the gym because I prefer to exercise outdoors, and in the long run that saves a lot of money too.

4. I usually exercise outdoors, but sometimes I go to the gym when it’s rainy or too cold outside. This way, I get exercise on a regular basis and don’t have an excuse to get lazy.

May I change “don’t” to “won’t”? not here


5. I have never traveled alone because I prefer to have a companion on a trip.

In the sentence, may I say, “I prefer to have company on a trip” or “I prefer to have someone accompany me on a trip”? yes

6. I often travel alone with a backpack to visit interesting places and see beautiful sights.

Does it mean the same if I say “I often travel by myself with a backpack…”? yes


7. To relieve stress, I recommend taking a walk where it’s very green. (probably not the best way of saying you like to walk in nature)

Does it mean the same if I say “taking a walk in nature”? This is actually much better than the above


8.I often panic when an earthquake occurs.

In the sentence, may I say also, “I am often panicky” or “I am often panicked” or “I am often in a panic”? What is the difference? no difference


Just a quick note - I realized I am the only expert active on the ESL page for the time being so I'd appreciate if you could limit the number of new questions you send my way to two per week as requested in the instructions on my page. Thank you for your understanding.

~Amy

English as a Second Language

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Amy Baker

Expertise

I can answer question about grammar, spelling, syntax, idioms, reading and/or writing that pertain to English as a Second Language. I am knowledgeable about both TOEFL and IELTS.

Experience

I'm a certified ESL teacher with 12 years of experience teaching K-12 and adults.

Education/Credentials
BSc MEd TESL post grad program for k-12 TESL post grad program for adult ed

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