Podcast-Mind your own business.
Podcast-Mind your own business.

Welcome to this edition of one2one Podcasts, focused on expressing an opinion in English as a second language.

Podcast-Mind your own business.


Welcome to this edition of one2one Podcasts, focused on expressing an opinion in English as a second language.


Business conversation questions

  1. ” Remote work is a more efficient and productive way of conducting business than traditional office-based work.”
  2.  “Data-driven decision-making is essential for businesses to stay competitive in the modern market.”
  3.  “Sustainability initiatives in business are just a PR stunt and do not significantly impact the environment.”
  4.  “Digital marketing is the most effective way for businesses to reach and engage with their target audience.”
  5. “Artificial intelligence and automation will lead to significant job losses and negatively impact the workforce.”
  6. “Corporate social responsibility should be mandatory for all businesses, regardless of size or industry.”
  7. “Flexible work hours and work-life balance initiatives are crucial for employee satisfaction and retention.”
  8. “Traditional brick-and-mortar stores will become obsolete as e-commerce continues to dominate the market.”
  9. “Innovation and adaptation to new technologies are essential for long-term business success.”
  10. Government regulations and policies are necessary to ensure fair competition in the business industry.”
  11. “Investing in employee training and development is a key strategy for businesses to stay competitive and retain top talent.”
  12. “Businesses should prioritise diversity and inclusion in their hiring practices to foster innovation and reflect the diverse customer base.”
  13.  “Corporate mergers and acquisitions contribute to market consolidation and limit competition, ultimately harming consumers.”
  14. “Investing in sustainable and renewable energy sources is not only environmentally responsible but also financially beneficial for businesses in the long run.”
  15. “Ethical sourcing and supply chain management should be a priority for businesses to ensure fair treatment of workers and prevent exploitation.”
  16.  “Businesses have a moral obligation to give back to the communities they operate in through philanthropy and social initiatives.”
  17. “Blockchain technology has the potential to revolutionise various industries and improve transparency and security in business transactions.”
  18. “Businesses should prioritise customer experience and satisfaction to build strong brand loyalty and increase profitability.”
  19. “The government should provide more financial incentives and support for small businesses to foster entrepreneurship and economic growth.”

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Inheritance - What's yours is mine
Inheritance – What’s yours is mine

Inheritance tax, also known as estate tax or death tax, is a controversial topic that has been debated for years. It is a tax levied on transferring property or assets from a deceased person to their heirs or beneficiaries.

Join us for this controversial conversation class on the subject of inheritance tax. Featured recently in the media, learn how to express your opinion in English as a second language. This class is available as part of our conversation course.


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Inheritance tax, also known as estate tax or death tax, is a controversial topic that has been debated for years. It is a tax levied on transferring property or assets from a deceased person to their heirs or beneficiaries. Below are some arguments for and against inheritance tax:

Inheritance Tax Advantages

1. Promotes equality: Inheritance tax ensures wealth is distributed more evenly among society. It prevents the concentration of wealth in the hands of a few and helps reduce wealth inequality. Taxing the wealthiest estates provides resources that can be used for public goods and services that benefit all citizens.

2. Revenue generation: Inheritance tax generates significant revenue for the government. This revenue can fund public services such as healthcare, education, infrastructure, and social welfare programs. It helps reduce the budget deficit and provides resources for the government to invest in the economy.

3. Prevents the creation of a hereditary aristocracy: Inheritance tax discourages the creation of a hereditary aristocracy by making it more difficult for wealthy families to pass on their wealth to future generations without any taxation. This ensures that individuals are motivated to work hard and contribute to society rather than relying solely on inherited wealth.

Inheritance Tax Disadvantages

Critics argue that inheritance tax is a form of double taxation. The assets being passed down have already been subjected to income tax, capital gains tax, and other taxes throughout the deceased person’s lifetime. Taxing them again upon death is seen as unfair and burdensome.

Inheritance tax can harm family-owned businesses and farms. In some cases, heirs may be forced to sell or liquidate assets to pay the tax, leading to the loss of jobs and the dissolution of family-owned enterprises. This can negatively impact local economies and communities.

Tax planning

High inheritance tax rates often incentivise wealthy individuals to engage in tax planning strategies to minimise their tax liability. This can lead to complex estate planning, the creation of trusts, and other methods to avoid or evade the tax. As a result, the revenue generated from inheritance tax may be lower than anticipated.

The debate on inheritance tax revolves around fairness, equality, economic impact, and revenue generation. Proponents argue that it promotes equality and generates revenue for public goods. In contrast, opponents say that it is a form of double taxation, negatively affects small businesses, and encourages tax evasion. The outcome of this debate depends on the balance between these factors and the specific context of each country or jurisdiction.

Conversation Questions 

1. What are your thoughts on inheritance tax? Do you believe it is fair or unfair?

2. Do you think inheritance tax helps reduce wealth inequality? Why or why not?

3. What impact do you think inheritance tax has on small businesses and family-owned farms?

4. Is it important for society to discourage the creation of a hereditary aristocracy? Why or why not?

5. In your opinion, does inheritance tax encourage tax evasion and avoidance? Why or why not?

6. Should inheritance tax rates be higher or lower? What factors should be considered in determining the appropriate rate?

7. Do you think inheritance tax revenue is effectively used for public goods and services? Can you provide any examples?

8. How does this tax compare to other forms of taxation, such as income tax or sales tax?

9. Would you support any reforms or changes to the current inheritance tax system? If so, what would they be?

10. How does this tax vary across different countries? Are there any countries with particularly high or low rates that you find interesting?

Writing Practice:

Essay writing task

Some people believe that inheritance tax is beneficial because it helps distribute wealth across society. Others believe that this form of taxation is simply not fair since its money that has already been taxed.

Write an essay to express your opinion. Your essay should have a minimum word count of 250 words, and you should take no longer than 40 minutes to complete this task.

Your essay will be corrected by a language instructor at the beginning of your class in real time so that you can identify any errors made and correct them. 

Fast Fashion- trends
Fast Fashion – Trends

There is a longstanding debate on whether society should place an environmental value on clothing or succumb to the concept of fast fashion. In this conversational lesson plan, we look at a disposable culture and discuss its impact on an already fragile environment.

This class is available as a one-off class or as part of our conversation course. You should note that this class is based at an intermediate level.

Written and produced exclusively for One2one Academy. ©
Course – The Conversation Course
Level – Intermediate

Fast Fashion - Trends

Several ethical issues in the fashion industry have gained attention in recent years. Some of these issues include:


Many brands outsource their production to factories in developing countries where workers are often subjected to poor working conditions, low wages, and long hours. The Sweatshop scenario is a significant concern in the industry, as workers may face exploitation and a lack of basic rights.

Price can play a part in a customer’s decision-making regarding purchasing power. These so-called sweatshops impact the profit margins and, thus, the recommended retail price of apparel.

A child workforce

The use of children in the fashion industry is a significant ethical issue. Children are often employed in hazardous conditions, deprived of education, and paid low or no wages.

In many cases, a consequence of a child workforce is an economic benefit to families who would otherwise face starvation. It also provides a debatable path towards education, breaking the poverty cycle.

Environmental impact

The fashion industry is one of the most polluting industries globally. The production processes, including toxic chemicals, excessive water consumption, and the disposal of textile waste, contribute to environmental degradation and climate change.

There are notable consequences of disposable fashion which are directly linked to global warming. On some level, developing countries striving to gain economic leverage may have overlooked the impact.

Fast fashion and overconsumption 

The concept promotes a culture of overconsumption, encouraging consumers to buy and discard clothing constantly. This leads to excessive waste, as garments are often discarded after only a few wears, contributing to landfill pollution and resource depletion.

Disposable fashion, as it’s otherwise referred to, can also reflect on the longevity of a garment, subsequently adding to this problem. Poor quality controls, fabrics and aftercare exasperate the issue, which often prompts the need to replace and dispose of. 

Animal welfare and fashion

Using animal-derived materials, such as fur, leather, and exotic skins, raises concerns about animal welfare. Some practices, such as fur farming and the use of exotic animal skins, involve cruelty and unsustainable practices.

Animals, often regarded as a manufacturing resource, have sparked many ethical debates and demonstrations. These aim to create awareness but usually could be more effective. 

Lack of transparency 

Many brands need more transparency in their supply chains, making it difficult for consumers to know the origin of their clothes and the working conditions under which they were produced. This lack of transparency hinders accountability and makes it challenging to address ethical concerns.

Educating consumers about fast fashion could harm wholesalers and retailers, whose focus is solely on profitability rather than sustainability. Some believe that there is a cause to promote awareness in educational institutions. In contrast, others think it should be the responsibility of parents and the media. 

Fashion conversation questions

1. How aware are you of the ethical issues in the fashion industry?

2. Do you think consumers have a responsibility to support ethical fashion brands? Why or why not?

3. What steps do you think fashion brands should take to ensure ethical production practices?

4. How can consumers make more informed choices when it comes to purchasing clothes?

5. Do you think government regulations are necessary to enforce ethical standards in the fashion industry? Why or why not?

6. What role do you think social media plays in raising awareness about ethical issues in fashion?

7. How can fashion brands improve transparency and provide more information about their supply chains?

8. Should consumers prioritise buying sustainable and ethically produced clothing over affordability and trends? Why or why not?

9. How can the industry reduce its environmental impact and promote more sustainable practices?

10. Do you feel strongly about any specific ethical issues. Why?

11. What are some common misconceptions about ethical fashion that you have encountered?

12. Have you made any changes to your shopping habits to support ethical fashion? If so, what motivated you to do so?

13. How do you think the demand for fast fashion affects the ethical practices of fashion brands?

14. Are there any specific fashion brands you consider leaders in sustainable and ethical practices? Why?

15. How can consumers hold brands accountable for their ethical practices?

16. What are some potential consequences of not addressing ethical issues in the fashion industry?

17. Do you think the industry as a whole is moving towards more ethical practices? Why or why not?

18. How can brands ensure fair wages and safe working conditions for their garment workers?

19. what impact does it have on local communities and artisans worldwide?

20. How can individuals promote and support the concept of ethical fashion within their communities?

Stories - idioms
Stories – Idioms

Idioms are often considered the most challenging part of the English language. Two short stories to help with understanding.

Stories - Idioms

Stories with idioms

Learning idioms is important for a number of reasons. Here are a few:

  1. Better communication: Idioms are widely used in English, and learning them can help you understand and communicate more effectively with native speakers. Idioms can add colour and nuance to your speech, making you sound more fluent and natural.
  2. Cultural understanding: Idioms are often tied to cultural references and can help you understand the history, customs, and traditions of English-speaking countries. By learning idioms, you can gain a deeper appreciation for the language and culture.
  3. Improved listening skills: Idioms can be difficult to understand if you’re not familiar with them. By learning idioms, you’ll be able to pick up on them more easily when you hear them in conversation or in movies and TV shows.
  4. Enhanced writing skills: Idioms can be used to add flair and personality to your writing, making it more engaging and interesting to read. By incorporating idioms into your writing, you can make your work more memorable and stand out from the crowd.

Overall, learning idioms is an important part of mastering English and can help you become a more effective communicator, both in spoken and written form. This lesson plan is based on reading and comprehension.


The following stories were written to help with understanding. These short stories were written and produced exclusively for One2one Academy.


A short story about a character called Sarah who owns a start-up

As CEO of a successful start-up, Sarah knew that it was essential to keep costs low in order to stay competitive in the market. However, she also knew that cutting corners on quality was not an option if she wanted to maintain customer satisfaction. After months of negotiations, Sarah finally closed a deal with a major investor, securing the funding she needed to take her business to the next level. With a ballpark figure in mind, she began to brainstorm new ideas for expanding her product line, embracing blue-sky thinking and exploring all possibilities.

Despite her best efforts to keep her team informed, Sarah realised that some members had been left out of the loop on important decisions. She quickly made adjustments to ensure that everyone was on the same page and working towards the same goals.

Still, she knew that success was never guaranteed in the competitive world of business. Sarah was determined not to put all her eggs in one basket, carefully balancing risks and rewards as she continued to build her company. With a commitment to quality and innovation, she remained confident that her start-up would continue to thrive and grow.

Written and produced exclusively for One2one Academy ©

Story 2 – A Beautiful Day

A short story about a character called Jane who organised a picnic for friends at a park.

It was a beautiful day, and Jane was looking forward to a picnic in the park with her friends. She started to get ready by _________(put) on her favourite dress and ___________ (tie) her hair. Then, she ___________ (pack) her picnic basket with sandwiches, fruits, and drinks.

As she ___________(step) of her house, she saw her friends ___________(wait) her at the gate. They ___________(set) towards the park, chatting and laughing along the way.

When they ___________(arrive) the park, they ___________(spread) a blanket and ___________(lay) all the food. They ___________(dug) and ___________(eat) all the delicious snacks.

After the meal, they ___________(clean) the area and ___________(pack) the leftover food. They ___________(set) to explore the park and ___________(come) a beautiful lake.

Jane ___________(suggest) they go for a boat ride, so they ___________(hop) a boat and ___________(row) into the lake. They ___________(take) the beautiful scenery and ___________(chat).

As the sun started to set, they ___________(row) to shore and ___________(head) home. It was a perfect day filled with laughter, good food, and great company.

Written and produced exclusively for One2one Academy ©


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Money - Save Or Spend?
Money – Save Or Spend?

Money, should we save or spend? The debate between saving for tomorrow or living for today is one that has been ongoing for years.

Money - Save Or Spend?

It is a question of personal preferences and circumstances. While some believe that it is important to save for the future, others argue that we should enjoy life while we can. In reality, both sides of the argument have their pros and cons.

One of the most significant advantages of saving for the future is financial stability and security. It allows us to have a safety net in case of emergencies or unexpected expenses. Saving also helps us achieve long-term goals such as buying a house, starting a business, or retiring comfortably. In addition, saving for the future allows us to have peace of mind, knowing that we have a plan in place for our financial future.

Money – The Temptation

However, one of the most significant disadvantages of saving for the future is that it requires discipline and patience. It can be challenging to resist the temptation to spend money on things we want now rather than saving it for later. In addition, the future is still being determined, and there is no guarantee that our savings will be enough to cover all our expenses in the future.

On the other hand, living for today allows us to enjoy life and experience new things. Life is short, and we never know what tomorrow may bring. Therefore, it is vital to seize the moment and make the most of our time. Living for today allows us to create memories, have fun, and enjoy the present moment.

However, one of the most significant disadvantages of living for today is that it can lead to financial instability and debt. It is essential to find a balance between saving for the future and enjoying the present. This can be achieved by creating a budget, prioritising expenses, and setting financial goals.

Money And Instability

In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of saving for the future. The pandemic has caused economic instability and uncertainty, leading to many job losses and financial hardship. Those with savings could weather the storm better than those without.

Finding ways to cut expenses and prioritise our spending while saving for the future. The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us the importance of having savings and being prepared for unexpected events. It is always possible to start saving for the future. With discipline, patience, and a clear plan, we can achieve financial security while still enjoying the present. Ultimately, the decision between saving for tomorrow or living for today is personal, and it is up to each individual to find a balance that works for them.


1. Is it better to spend money or invest it in the future?

2. Should individuals be responsible for their own financial security, or should the government provide more support?

3. Is it worth taking on debt to finance education or other investments?

4. Should there be limits on how much individuals can save or invest?

5. Is it fair for wealthy individuals to pay higher taxes to support social welfare programs?

6. Should there be a universal basic income to ensure financial security for all individuals?

7. Is it ethical for companies to offer high-interest loans to individuals who may be unable to repay them?

8. Should there be more regulations on how financial institutions operate to protect consumers?

9. Should individuals be required to take financial literacy courses before being able to open a bank account or apply for a loan?

10. Should the government provide more financial support for small businesses and entrepreneurs?

11. Is it ethical for businesses to prioritise profits over the well-being of their employees?

12. Should there be a cap on CEO salaries to reduce income inequality?

13. Is it fair for companies to use tax loopholes to avoid paying their fair share of taxes?

14. Should more incentives exist for individuals and businesses to invest in renewable energy?

15. Is it ethical for companies to engage in price gouging during times of crisis or scarcity?

16. Should there be more transparency in how companies use consumer data for advertising and marketing purposes?

17. Is it ethical for companies to engage in offshore outsourcing to reduce labour costs?

18. Should there be more regulations on how companies treat their customers, particularly in industries like healthcare and insurance?

19. Is it ethical for companies to use sweatshop labour to manufacture their products?

20. Should there be more support for employee-owned businesses as a more equitable alternative to traditional corporate structures?

Try this lesson plan!

If you liked this lesson plan, you may enjoy Politics. Join me in this debate-style lesson plan that explores the concept of expression. Politics is a challenging topic to discuss. We all have an opinion about how a country should be managed, and very often, there is a good reason to avoid a discussion. Welcome to this one2one podcast; this lesson plan will provide insight into how we express ourselves in English as a second language. Our conversation course builds confidence, increases vocabulary and will help you to start, stop and maintain a conversation. Expressing yourself in the English language can be about more than just agreeing with someone. We should also know how to disagree. Again, vocabulary is key, and the focus may shift towards using voice tones, speed of speech or more complex sentence constructions.

Idioms Unlocked
Idioms – Unlocked

We use idioms to add colour and depth to our language, express complex ideas in a simple way, and convey cultural knowledge.

We use idioms to add colour and depth to our language, express complex ideas in a simple way, and convey cultural knowledge. Idioms are often used to create imagery, humour, or emphasis in speech or writing. They can also help to convey an emotion or tone that might be difficult to express otherwise. By using idioms, we can communicate more effectively and efficiently and add personality and flair to our language.

Common Idioms

  1. “Break a leg” – means good luck.
  2. “Bite the bullet” – means to endure a difficult or painful situation.
  3. “Kill two birds with one stone” – means to accomplish two things with a single action.
  4. “Beat around the bush” – meaning to avoid discussing the main topic.
  5. “Cost an arm and a leg” – meaning very expensive.
  6. “Piece of cake” means something easy to do.
  7. “Hit the nail on the head” – meaning to be accurate or correct.
  8. “Let the cat out of the bag” means revealing a secret.
  9. “A dime a dozen” – something that is very common or easy to find.
  10. “Under the weather” means feeling ill or sick.

These are just a few of the many idioms commonly used in English.

Can idioms work with different tenses?

Yes, idioms can work with different tenses in English. The tense used in an idiom depends on the context and the situation in which it is being used. In most cases, idioms are used in their present or past tense forms, but they can also be used in the future tense.

For example, the idiom “break a leg” is commonly used in the present tense to wish someone good luck before a performance or event. However, it can also be used in the past tense, such as when describing the experience of a previous performance.

Similarly, the idiom “bite the bullet” can be used in the present tense when someone is facing a difficult situation or in the past tense to describe someone who has already faced and overcome a difficult situation.

Idioms can work with different tenses depending on the context and situation in which they are being used.

The Rules

Idioms are a type of figurative language used in English that can be challenging for non-native speakers to understand. Here are some general rules to keep in mind when using idioms:

  1. Idioms are not to be taken literally. They are figurative expressions that convey a meaning beyond the literal words used.
  2. Idioms are often culturally specific. Some idioms may only be widely used or understood in certain regions or countries.
  3. Idioms can enhance communication by making speech more colourful and expressive. However, the overuse of idioms or misusing them can confuse the listener.
  4. Idioms are often used in informal speech and writing but may not be appropriate in formal communication.
  5. Idioms can be used in different tenses depending on the context and situation.
  6. Idioms can be used in different forms, such as verbs, adjectives, or nouns.
  7. When using idioms, it’s important to understand the context in which they are being used so that you can use them appropriately and effectively.

Overall, idioms are a fun and creative way to express yourself in English, but they require a good understanding of the language and culture to use them effectively.

Are idioms slang?

Not all idioms are slang, but some may be considered slang depending on the context and the region in which they are used. Slang is a type of informal language that often consists of non-standard words, phrases, or expressions specific to a particular group or subculture. Some idioms may fall under this category, but many are widely used and accepted in mainstream English. It’s essential to understand the context and audience when using idioms to ensure that they are appropriate and effective in communication.

Story – The Challenge

Tom was in a tight spot. He had bitten off more than he could chew when he promised his boss that he would finish the project by the end of the day. But as time ticked away, he found himself between a rock and a hard place.

He tried to put his nose to the grindstone and work as fast as he could, but he was as nervous as a cat in a room full of rocking chairs. He knew that if he didn’t finish in time, his boss would give him the axe.

But then, as luck would have it, his colleague, Jack, came to the rescue. “Don’t worry, Tom,” he said. “I’ve got your back. We’ll finish this project together, no problem.”

Tom breathed a sigh of relief and realised that Jack was a real lifesaver. They worked like a well-oiled machine and were able to finish the project with time to spare.

Tom was over the moon with joy and thanked Jack from the bottom of his heart. “You really saved my bacon!” he exclaimed.

Jack just shrugged and said, “Hey, it’s no skin off my nose. We’re all in this together, right?”

Tom realised that he had learned a valuable lesson. He couldn’t always go it alone and sometimes needed to rely on his colleagues. He was glad that he had such a great team to work with.

From that day on, Tom didn’t bite off more than he could chew and always remembered that he was just a small fish in a big pond. But with his team by his side, he knew that they could take on any challenge that came their way.

Production by One2one Academy

All rights reserved ©

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Comprehension task

1. “Break a __________” means good luck.

2. “A piece of cake” means something that is very __________.

3. “Bite the __________” means to accept the consequences of your actions.

4. “Hit the __________” means to go to bed.

5. “The __________ is on the other foot” means the situation has reversed.

6. “Let the cat out of the __________” means to reveal a secret.

7. “Kick the __________” means to die.

8. “When pigs __________” means something is unlikely to happen.

9. “Spill the __________” means to reveal a secret or information.

10. “Under the __________” means secretly or covertly.

*Answers provided in class

Written and produced exclusively for One2one Academy.©

Phrasal verbs - unlocked
Phrasal Verbs – unlocked

We unlock some of the myths surrounding Phrasal verbs and give insight into how they are used.

Phrasal verbs - unlocked. A photo depicting old London Town to suggest a theme for speaking like a native speaker.


We use phrasal verbs in English because they add nuance and depth to our language. Phrasal verbs are formed by combining a verb with one or more prepositions or adverbs, and they often have multiple meanings depending on the context in which they are used. These verbs are an essential part of conversational English and can be used to express a wide range of ideas and actions.

Phrasal verbs can also help you to sound more natural and fluent in English. Native speakers use these verbs all the time, so learning how to use them correctly will help you to communicate more effectively with English speakers.

Another reason we use phrasal verbs is that they are often more descriptive and specific than single-word verbs. For example, the phrasal verb “to look up” can mean to search for information in a dictionary or on the internet. This is more specific than using the single-word verb “to search”, which can refer to a broader range of actions.

Overall, phrasal verbs are a vital part of the English language, and learning how to use them correctly can help you to communicate more effectively and sound more natural in English.

How many phrasal verbs do I need to sound like a native speaker?

There is no specific number of phrasal verbs you need to know to sound native in English. Native English speakers use many phrasal verbs in their everyday conversations, and the number of phrasal verbs you need to know depends on the level of proficiency you want to achieve.

However, it is essential to note that knowing a large number of phrasal verbs does not necessarily mean that you will sound completely native. Native speakers also use idiomatic expressions, collocations, and other linguistic features that you will need to learn and master to sound truly native.

That being said, it is always beneficial to learn as many phrasal verbs as possible, as they are an important part of the English language and will help you to communicate more effectively with native speakers. You can start by learning the most common phrasal verbs and gradually building your knowledge from there.

Phrasal verbs used at work

  1. Carry out: To perform or complete a task or duty. Example: I need to carry out market research before launching the product.
  2. Follow up: To pursue an issue or task to its completion or resolution. Example: Please follow up with the client to confirm the meeting time.
  3. Take on: To accept or assume responsibility for a task or project. Example: I am willing to take on more responsibility in the team.
  4. Hand in: To submit or deliver a document or report. Example: Please hand in your expense report by Friday.
  5. Bring up: To introduce a topic or issue for discussion. Example: I would like to bring up the issue of employee retention.
  6. Draw up: To create or prepare a document or plan. Example: We need to draw up a project plan before we start the work.
  7. Put together: To assemble or compile something. Example: We need to put together a proposal for the new project.
  8. Work out: To solve or resolve a problem or issue. Example: Let’s work out a solution to the staffing problem.
  9. Set up: To establish or create something. Example: We need to set up a meeting with the stakeholders.
  10. Come up with: To suggest or propose an idea or solution. Example: Can you come up with a new marketing plan for the product?

Phrasal verbs used in everyday conversations

  1. Hang out: To spend time with friends or acquaintances in a casual setting. Example: Let’s hang out at the park this weekend.
  2. Catch up: To get up to date on news or events with someone. Example: Let’s meet up for coffee and catch up.
  3. Break up: To end a relationship. Example: They decided to break up after a long discussion.
  4. Drop off: To leave someone or something at a particular place. Example: I need to drop off my kids at school before work.
  5. Pick up: To collect or obtain something. Example: I need to pick up some groceries on my way home.
  6. Run into: To meet unexpectedly. Example: I ran into my old friend at the supermarket.
  7. Look forward to: To be excited about something that is going to happen in the future. Example: I am looking forward to my vacation next month.
  8. Cheer up: To make someone feel happier or less sad. Example: Let’s watch a comedy movie to cheer you up.
  9. Hang up: To end a phone call. Example: I need to hang up now, I have another call coming in.
  10. Put off: To delay or postpone something. Example: I had to put off my dentist appointment because of my work schedule.

How many exist?

There is no definitive answer to this question as the number of phrasal verbs in English constantly evolves, and there are many variations and nuances. However, it is estimated that there are thousands of phrasal verbs in English, and new ones are added to the language every year. Some sources suggest that around 6,000 phrasal verbs are in common use, while others put the number higher or lower. Ultimately, the exact number is difficult to determine. Still, it is clear that phrasal verbs are an important part of the English language and are used frequently in everyday conversation and writing.

The benefits of practising Phrasal verbs with an English teacher.

Practising with an English teacher can have several benefits, including:

  1. Clarifying meanings: Phrasal verbs can have multiple meanings depending on the context they are used in. An English teacher can help clarify the meanings of phrasal verbs and provide examples of how they are used in different situations.
  2. Improving vocabulary: Phrasal verbs are an essential part of English vocabulary, and mastering them can help improve your language skills. An English teacher can provide you with a list of commonly used phrasal verbs and teach you how to use them effectively.
  3. Enhancing communication: Using phrasal verbs can make your communication more effective and natural-sounding. By practising with an English teacher, you can learn how to use phrasal verbs in the right context and convey your message more clearly.
  4. Boosting confidence: Learning phrasal verbs can be challenging, but with the help of an English teacher, you can gain confidence in using them correctly. By practising with a teacher, you can learn from your mistakes and improve your language skills.

Practising with an English teacher can help you develop a deeper understanding of the English language and improve your communication skills.

The Conversation Course

Are you looking for a personalised way to improve your English-speaking skills? Do you prefer one-on-one instruction that caters to your individual needs and interests? Then our one-to-one English conversation course is the perfect fit for you!

With our course, you’ll receive personalised attention from a dedicated instructor who will work with you to identify your strengths and weaknesses. Together, you’ll create a customised learning plan that focuses on the areas you need the most help with.

Our experienced instructors will guide you through a variety of topics, from everyday conversations to specialised vocabulary for business or academic settings. You’ll receive immediate feedback and correction, which will help you build confidence and fluency in spoken English.

But our course is more than just language lessons. It’s also a chance to practice your English in a comfortable and relaxed setting. You’ll have the opportunity to ask questions, share your opinions, and engage in meaningful conversations with your instructor.

So why wait? Take the first step towards improving your English-speaking skills, and sign up for our one-to-one English conversation course today! With personalised attention and customised instruction, you’ll speak English confidently and easily in no time.

Living Beyond Necessity; The Perils and Pleasures Of Luxuries
Living Beyond Necessity – The Perils and Pleasures Of Luxuries

What defines a luxury and a necessity, and how do our personal values and societal norms shape our understanding of these terms?

Living Beyond Necessity; The Perils and Pleasures Of Luxuries
Living Beyond Necessity; The Perils and Pleasures Of Luxuries

What defines a luxury and a necessity, and how do our personal values and societal norms shape our understanding of these terms?

Luxuries And Necessities

Luxuries and necessities have always been a topic of debate, with some arguing that luxuries are essential for a good quality of life, while others see them as unnecessary indulgences. In this debate, we will explore both sides of the argument and determine whether luxuries are truly necessary or just frivolous expenses.

On the one hand, luxuries can provide a sense of comfort and enjoyment that is essential for a happy and fulfilling life. For many people, luxurious items such as fancy cars, designer clothing, and high-end electronics are not just status symbols but sources of pleasure and satisfaction. These items can boost one’s self-esteem and provide a sense of accomplishment, leading to improved mental health and overall well-being.

The Podcast version of this lesson plan is available on Spotify. It’s a great way to practice your listening skills and learn more about pronunciation. Press the button below.


Moreover, luxuries can also be seen as investments in one’s future. For example, a well-made suit or a luxury car can last for many years and provide long-term benefits, such as impressing potential employers or clients. In this way, luxuries can be seen as essential tools for success and advancement in one’s personal and professional life.

However, on the other hand, many argue that luxuries are unnecessary and even harmful to society. In a world where millions of people struggle to meet their basic needs, spending exorbitant amounts of money on frivolous items can be seen as selfish and wasteful. Moreover, pursuing luxuries can contribute to a culture of materialism, where people are judged by their possessions rather than their character or abilities. Should society place more value on the concept of necessity?

Social Impacts

In addition, luxuries can also have negative environmental and social impacts. The production and disposal of luxury goods can contribute to pollution, waste, and exploitation of workers in developing countries. Pursuing luxury can also promote unsustainable lifestyles, where people consume resources at a rate that is not environmentally or socially responsible.

In conclusion, while luxuries can provide pleasure and satisfaction, they are not essential for a happy and fulfilling life. Moreover, the pursuit of luxuries can negatively impact society and the environment. Therefore, it is important to balance the desire for luxury with a sense of responsibility and awareness of the broader impacts of our consumption choices. Ultimately, it is up to each individual to determine their own values and priorities and to make choices that align with those values.

Challenging Questions

Here are some questions to challenge your language skills;

  1. Are luxuries essential for a good quality of life, or are they just unnecessary indulgences?
  2. Do luxuries contribute to a culture of materialism and superficiality, or do they enhance people’s sense of self-worth and confidence?
  3. Should people be free to spend their money on whatever they desire, even if it means buying luxury items while others struggle to meet their basic needs?
  4. Is investing in luxury items a smart financial decision, or is it a waste of money that could be better spent on necessities or investments?
  5. Should governments regulate the production and consumption of luxury goods to reduce their environmental and social impacts?
  6. Are necessities and luxuries subjective and dependent on individual circumstances, or are there universal standards that determine what is essential and what is not?
  7. Do people have a moral obligation to prioritize necessities over luxuries, or is it up to each individual to determine their own priorities and values?
  8. Is the pursuit of luxury a reflection of a healthy desire for pleasure and enjoyment, or is it a symptom of a deeper sense of dissatisfaction and emptiness?
  9. Should businesses prioritize the production of luxury goods over the production of essential goods, or should they focus on meeting people’s basic needs first?
  10. Is the pursuit of luxury a form of privilege that is only available to a select few, or is it a universal desire that transcends social and economic boundaries?

Remember that a conversation works both ways. You should ask questions too. Learning about question formats in the English language is a valuable tool to help develop your conversation skills.

Conversation Course

If you need practice, take a look at our conversation course. Our course is an excellent way to improve communication skills and language proficiency. This type, of course, provides a structured environment for you to practice speaking and listening, as well as to develop your vocabulary and grammar. In this course, you are encouraged to participate actively, engaging in discussions and debates on various topics. We create a supportive and engaging atmosphere where you can feel comfortable expressing your opinions and ideas, even if you make mistakes. With regular practice, you can build confidence in your ability to communicate effectively. A conversation course is an effective way to improve language proficiency.

Toxic - Social media
Toxic – social media

Toxic is a One2one Academy conversation-based podcast about the impact of social media on society. Learn how to express yourself in English.

Toxic - Social media.


The world has experienced a dramatic change over the years in terms of the impact of social media. Some say that the younger generation is slowly losing their social skills and that we have passed the point of no return.

This aptly named podcast refers to social media’s impact on our society. So, if you are studying English as a second language, then the first thing you should do is research this topic. Finding new phrases and words that can be used to express an opinion is critical to improving your conversation skills. 



There are plenty of resources online; perhaps that’s a great place to start. Let me introduce some statements to think about at this stage.

  1. Children’s communication skills have evolved and are now more efficient and effective.
  2. There is a divide between how the younger and older generations use social media.
  3. Social media has created a wealth of new types of jobs that have contributed to stronger global economies.
  4. The education sector has benefited from how social media is used. 
  5. Social media platforms are contributing towards stronger relationships between friends and family members. 

Expressing an opinion on topics with more than one point of view will help you improve your conversation skills. I have mentioned a few alternative forms you can use in other podcasts. 


I wanted to focus on how people interact when they speak to each other. Firstly it would be strange not to give a signal that we are listening to someone. By a signal, I mean some form of sound or, indeed, a sentence to at least acknowledge that you are in a conversation.

This can vary in response, but for now, here are a few different ways that we use when conversing:

  1. That’s interesting
  2. I see
  3. Hmm 

You can use many more, but they are considered indicators that you are listening and participating in a conversation. Unfortunately, many students wait to be asked a question rather than ask questions. This can be a fatal mistake since asking questions will help to promote or extend a conversation with someone. Therefore, introducing some questions is good practice to prompt a response.

Voice Tones 

The impact of voice tones can indicate emotional content. For example, a louder voice could mean aggression or how strongly you feel about something, whereas a softer voice could be considered more empathic.

On the one hand, learning how to apply voice tones to influence meaning in English is a skill. On the other hand, it will take some time to perfect, so don’t get frustrated and keep practising. 

English exams

If you are taking an exam in English, then you should consider some of these styles of questions:

  1. How has the use of social media changed in the last five years?
  2. Which platforms do you use and why?
  3. How often do you post something on a platform?
  4. In your opinion, what types of new jobs have been created directly from social media?
  5. Do you think that how we buy products and services is impacted by social media? Why?
  6. How have you personally benefited from social media? Why?
  7. Is social media considered a babysitter for the younger generation? Why?
  8. Do you believe that social media is now a key influencer in the business sector? Why?


Property ownership – shades of red

A podcast based on the concept of property ownership. This is a conversation class lesson plan aimed at an intermediate level.

The world seems to be a smaller place. Yet, an overwhelming school of thought believes property ownership is still high on the wish list for most.

Shades of red - podcast about property ownership


The world seems to be a smaller place. Yet, an overwhelming school of thought believes home ownership is still on a high list of priorities. The best investment is buying a property.

Buying a property is more of an investment, a safe and calculative place to store money. However, others believe it’s risky to place all your money in one place. What do you think and why?

Before you answer this question, consider that there are different forms of expressing yourself in English. The form “I think” is undoubtedly the most common, but there are other forms that you should consider, such as “In my opinion” and “I strongly believe”. Each carries a different degree of how strongly you feel about a topic. Try various forms so that you can practice.

Topping up a pension fund

The next question is based on a pension. Research over many decades has shown that investing in a property is a great way to top up a pension fund. This can often provide enhanced security in preparation for retirement. Do you agree or disagree, and why?

It’s an intriguing concept since some of us live for now, and some want to think about the future. Try and use examples from your personal experience with this topic. Often using examples can help you to express an opinion.

Renting a property

Renting a property is more flexible. This could be true post-Pandemic, as working from home can mean travelling expenses to and from work are no longer significant considerations.

Is flexibility in terms of settling in an area or scaling up to a larger property when you have more money or scaling down when you don’t important?

Property status in society

Our place in society is measured by the location of a property and its size. Status is a consideration. It displays wealth and success. But is this not the point of owning a property, and why?

Try and expand your answers. It will help you to show the depth of your grammar and demonstrate how strongly you feel about a topic.

Property equity release

Turning some of the property into a cash fund can seem attractive to some, although there is a risk that it can block the sale of a house. Nevertheless, it can make all the difference the older you get. So what do you think and why?

Equity release is only available in some countries, and various forms of this banking product exist. I have placed a link in the text that may help you research this topic if you are unfamiliar with it.

Asking questions

Students often become accustomed to answering questions, but there is cause to encourage a flow of questions both ways. Asking questions help with interaction and is good practice to ask questions.

Getting used to question formats will increase your confidence, listening and comprehension skills, and grammar depth.

Well, that’s all the time we have for today. I hope that you enjoyed this class. Please remember to like and share, and look out for more one2one podcasts on Spotify, Apple and Google. 

Thanks for listening and till next time, bye for now.

This Podcast is called Shades Of Red. Ideal for students learning English as a second language, I will talk about the concept of home ownership. Aimed at an intermediate level, some thought proking questions will require you to express yourself in English as a second language.

For more information about one2one online courses, please visit our website- www.one2oneacademy.com

Podcast production – One2one podcasts

Presenter – Sanj Saigal

Instagram – @one2one_academy

Facebook – learnenglishonline001

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