Like vs As

We generally use LIKE and AS to make comparisons.


Like means “same form, appearance, kind, character” and is followed by a noun or noun phrase. The verb is often static, such as be, seems, looks, acts.

  • The structure of the sentence is usually: VERB + LIKE + NOUN / PRONOUN.

– He speaks like a native speaker.
– She looks like a supermodel.

  • It is also used before a Gerund (NON-FINITE CLAUSE)

– Talking with him is like talking to myself.


As means “in the manner” and is usually followed by a clause (subj + verb).

  •  The structure of the sentence is usually: AS + SUBJECT + VERB.

– Nobody sings as she does.
– We behave as though we were two comedians.
– He acts more as a brother would (act).

  • Another use of AS is to say what the role/function of a person/thing is.

– He started work as a carpenter.
– She used the tapestry as a decoration in her living room.

  • It can also be used to compare 2 elements: AS + MODIFIER + AS

– He is as smart as a fox

LIKE instead of  AS

  •  Similar meanings: It is common in American English to use LIKE instead of AS. However, it is generally considered informal to use it in this way.

– We play football like champions do.

  • Different meanings: Be careful, in similar sentences that use LIKE and AS, the meanings of each sentence are very different.

– As your boss, I must warn you to be careful. (I am your boss.)
– Like your boss, I must warn you to be careful. (I am not your boss, but he/she and I have similar attitudes.)

What comparisons could you use to describe yourself?

  • Do you look like a super model or speak English like a native speaker?
  • Are you as smart as a fox, as tall as a giraffe or as wise as an owl?

Tell LEM…xo!

p.s. This post was created by Sarah La Pietra… a very wise EASI trainer.



How NOT to schedule a meeting

This post was inspired by a true event. Does it sound familiar?

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From: Italo Rossi
Sent: 24 March 2014
To: Brittany Smith

Hi Brit,

I’ll be busy  on Thursday for the next two weeks (March 27th and 3rd April). Can we postpone our weekly review to Friday afternoon at around  4 pm?


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From: Brittany Smith
Sent: 24 March 2014
To: Italo Rossi

Hi Italo,

Next Friday at 4 is ok, but this week I can’t because I have a another meeting.
When else are you free ?


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Hi Brit,  

I’ll see you next Friday at 4pm for the next review and we can fix the second one then.


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Hi Italo,

No, I’m afraid our next review can’t wait till next Friday. We need to have one every week.
Are you free this Friday morning?


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Hi Brit,

I’m sorry, I’m not following…  it seemed to me that you confirmed next Friday, then said Friday was too late, and then suggested Friday again…
Could you please clarify that for me?


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Hi Italo,

I confirm next Friday 4th April at 4pm for next week’s review.
We need to have a meeting this week too. So, I suggest Friday 28th in the morning around 9, if you are free.

Please confirm,

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Thanks Brit,

Now I get it!

In Italian, “venerdì prossimo”, which I was translating as “next Friday”, is the one coming: March 28thBut you call that “this Friday”.

So,  Friday 4th at 4pm is confirmed.
Unfortunately, I’m busy on Friday 28th at 9am. How about Wednesday?

I apologise for the misunderstanding !

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In real life, the emails went back and forth until they set an appointment for what would be Thursday 27th at 11 am… which they both missed!!

Have you ever had a similar experience?

Tell Lem…xo!

p.s. This post was created by Ines… who really likes numbers.

Spring Fever

A blast from the past to make you get up from your chair and twist away with the King.


A little bird, he told me so, he said come on, get on the go
Open your eyes the sky is full of butterflies
The blossoms on the trees stir up the honey bees
Spring makes my fever right

Spring fever, Spring is here at last
Spring fever, my heart’s beating fast
Get up, get out spring is everywhere

Well if you feel the wanderlust, just grab a car or hop a bus
In every town there’s excitement to be found
So much is happening, don’t miss the joy of spring
The world’s in love just look around

Spring fever comes to everyone
Spring fever, it’s time for fun
Get up, get out spring is everywhere

Spring vocabulary can we learn from this video clip:

  • get on the go: start moving, be active
  • blossom: flower, to flourish
  • stir up: to stimulate
  • to make something right: to correct, solve, fix or cure something
  • at last: finally
  • wanderlust: a very strong or irresistible impulse to travel
  • grab: to take or grasp suddenly
  • hop: to jump, to make a quick trip

Idioms about Spring:

– to be full of the joys of spring:  to be very happy
When he got his promotion, he was full of the joys of spring.

– to be no spring chicken: not young any more
Antonio Banderas is no spring chicken, but he is still very attractive.

p.s. This post was created by Ines, who’s no spring chicken, but is full of the joys of spring now that the sun’s out.

The Monuments Men

Today’s video clip is from a recent interview on the BBC chat show of Graham Norton with the stars of the new movie release “The Monuments Men”.

Read the 5 questions below, listen to the audio clip and try to find the answers:

  • What true story is the movie inspired by?
  • What had the Nazis stolen?
  • Who on the couch doesn’t have an agent?
  • Who do they say drinks all the time?
  • What were George Clooney and Bill Murray doing with wheelchairs in Venice?

How to check your answers:

  • Share this video clip with a friend and check them together
  • Set this as a homework activity for your team
  • Post your answers here and we can correct them together

What useful vocabulary can we learn from this video clip:

-curators: a keeper or custodian of a museum or other collection
-stiffs: People who are not moving/behaving easily or freely
-bang on: with absolute accuracy
-fess up: to confess to having done something
-a bite to eat: A small meal

p.s. This video was created by Anna, whose mp3 English audio collection is unbeatable.

“Let Her Go” by Passenger

What is he singing about?

I think it’s mostly about not realizing how much you love or need someone or something until it’s gone and you can’t have them/it  back. In essence, it is about regret.

Who is Passenger?

Michael David Rosenberg  better known by his stage name Passenger, is an English folk-rock singer. He writes songs, plays guitar, has an american dad from New Jersey. He is most famous for ‘Let Her Go’.

What verbs can we learn from the lyrics?

  • to miss : to be without
  • to burn : to be on fire
  • to let go : to allow someone to be free
  • to stare : to look at someone or something for a long time
  • to fall asleep : to begin sleeping
  • to dive : to fall suddenly and quickly into something
  • to feel low : to be depressed

What questions can we ask to start a conversation?

  1. Have you ever had to let someone or something go?
  2. What would you say to someone who was staring at you?
  3. When was the last time you used a candle? How long did it burn for?
  4. What do you miss most about your childhood?
  5. What time do you normally fall asleep at night?
  6. What advice do you give friends who are feeling low?
  7. Have you ever been diving?  Tell us about it.


p.s. this post was created by Crissy…who totally loves this tune!

Listening and Viewing for the Masses

This month’s audio clip discusses the appointment of Pope Francis. It is taken from one of the podcasts from the newspaper “The Economist”. It discusses how the Argentine pontiff represents a number of firsts but he inherits a troubled dossier. The audio pieces discuss the huge task he now faces in putting the church right.

Read the 5 questions below and listen to the audio clip and try to find the answers:

• What is the key to the success of Vatican diplomacy?
• Who are seen to be the “Cutting edge” of the church?
• What questions were raised under Pope Benedict’s reign?
• What gesture of humility was made by Pope Francis?
• What does his own ministry back home in Argentina tell us about his future Papacy?

How to check your answers:

• Share this audio clip with a friend and check them together
• Set this as a homework activity for your team
• Post your answers here and we can correct them together

Late last year, Pope Francis was applauded for initiating a process designed to collect opinions from lay Catholics across the globe. A questionnaire with almost 40 questions about family, marriage and other key topics was sent out to parishes.

• What do you feel are the most important issues that will arise from the questionnaire that the Church needs to address?
• Do you think the role of the Church has changed in your country during the last 50 years?
• Do you believe that Pope Francis is doing a good job to date?

Tell LEM… xo

Ps. This post was created by Anna L. whose mp3 English audio collection is unbeatable.

Wake Me Up – Avicii

What this song is about

Wake Me Up is a song about youth trying to live life in a complicated world. It suggests that there are many unknowns and difficulties ahead and that life needs to be taken seriously in order to deal with these problems. The singer, however, wants to enjoy life and be young and free of responsibilities.

He would much rather wake up when it’s all over so he can keep living the dream of being young forever. This is difficult, as older generations can’t relate to that mentality and there is a conflict with what society expects. The video clip reflects this with two youths searching for a place where they can feel accepted, eventually finding it in the form of a concert at the end of the clip.

Why I like this song
The song’s melody and rhythm is happy and upbeat, essentially echoing the carefree and positive nature of its message; that life is to be enjoyed. It’s a message that I really like as I find myself on a very similar path. I also think it’s easy for everyone to relate to this song as most people experienced these feelings when they were young. It’s quite possible that many would still like to be living by these principles if they hadn’t already ‘woken up.’

Useful vocabulary you can learn from this post

youth: young person
unknowns: things we don’t know
ahead: in front of you, forward or in the future
to deal: to manage, to handle, to face or solve
rather: prefer
eventually: after some time
clip: video
upbeat: cheerful, optimistic, positive
echoing: repeating or reminding you of something
carefree: light hearted, without worries or concerns
to relate to: to understand because of having a similar experience


Feeling my way through the darkness
Guided by a beating heart
I can’t tell where the journey will end
But I know where to start

They tell me I’m too young to understand
They say I’m caught up in a dream
Well life will pass me by if I don’t open up my eyes
Well that’s fine by me

So wake me up when it’s all over
When I’m wiser and I’m older
All this time I was finding myself
And I didn’t know I was lost

I tried carrying the weight of the world
But I only have two hands
Hope I get the chance to travel the world
But I don’t have any plans

Wish that I could stay forever this young
Not afraid to close my eyes
Life’s a game made for everyone
And love is the prize

Cool expressions we can learn from this song

Feeling my way through the darkness: touching the objects in the dark like you would do if the lights went out in your house at night. It refers to the unknowns and difficulties in life.
Life will pass me by: happen without being noticed or fully experienced by someone.
Carrying the weight of the world: Trying to deal with all the problems in life without help

Can you answer the following questions or discuss them with your friends?

1. Do you think the current generation of youths has more trouble fitting in than previous generations? Why/Why not?
2. Is it fair to live life without responsibilities and without caring about consequences for yourself and those around you?
3. What would you be doing if you were living life as if it were a dream?
4. Did you have these sentiments in your early youth? Why/How did they change?

Tell LEM… xo

Ps. This post was created by Marco, an Aussie from the canals of Venice.

If you could help change the world, would you?

This is your assignment. What’s your idea?

If nothing comes to mind just yet, you can start by paying it forward: three big favours for three people, expecting nothing in return, but for them to do the same for 3 other people.

What useful vocabulary can we learn from this video?

  • to expect: to think that something will probably happen or to consider something to be reasonable or required
  • disappointment: unhappiness because something wasn’t as good as expected, or because something you hoped for didn’t happen
  • to flip (something) upside down: to rotate something or change something
  • assignment: a specified task or amount of work given to someone
  • a big chance: a great opportunity
  • to fix: to make something able to work properly again, to repair
  • realm: an area of activity, interest, or knowledge

Can you answer the following questions?

  • Have you ever helped someone you didn’t know?
  • Has a stranger ever helped you without expecting anything in return?
  • Do you see any positive changes in the world around you?
  • Do you believe you can make a difference?

Tell LEM and inspire others!

LEM… xo

ps. This post was created  by Ines… who sees open source as a most definite sign for hope!

Can we say ‘I knew her yesterday.’?

If you are not sure, watch the video!

You can share the video with a friend if you have some extra time.


Are you a people developer?


You may be a junior or senior manager…no matter! If you have people under you, then you have the responsibility to develop your resources. Tom Peters says “That is your life, That is your legacy”. What do you think?

What 6 expressions did I pick up from this video?

  • A while back… some time ago…
  • My view of the world is…my outlook on this topic is…
  • The point of this is….the objective is…
  • And so on down the line….and continuing in that manner…
  • I have tidied it up a bit since… I have made the process clearer
  • Here is exactly the way it goes…Let me tell you what you need to do…

Can you answer Tom’s 6 key questions in writing and share them with your trainer?

  1. Name the 1 person whose growth you have most contributed to over the past 3 years?
  2. Explain where they were in their career, where they are today and where they will be in the near future?
  3. Do you have a precise development strategy for that person?Explain it.
  4. What has been your biggest development disappointment of the last 12 months? Looking back, could you have done anything differently?
  5. What have been your greatest development triumph & disaster over the last 10 years?
  6. What have you learnt about people development over the last 10 years?


If this post made you stop and think about leadership skills, then share it with someone who might also be interested.

You can book 1 session with an EASI trainer to work on this area of leadership in English. Remember that when the time to perform arrives the time to prepare has passed. Drop us a line today .


p.s. This post was created  by Crissy…curious cat, language coach & proud Quebecer!