Humble and Kind

While googling, I found an interesting website, called spinditty, with a blog titled called “79 Best Songs that Give Life Advice”.  On it, I found “Humble and Kind” written by Lori McKenna in 2016 and performed by Tim McGraw, which really stood out for me.

I hadn’t heard it before but thought it would be a great song to use as a listening exercise. The music video touched me as this song seemed very American and international all at the same time. 

Lori was inspired to write this song as a way to give advice to her children during these modern times: She wanted a way to pass on words of wisdom from days gone past.  How many of them sound familiar to you?

Here’s the music video and below the lyrics to the song.

Humble And Kind
You know there’s a lot that goes by the front door.
Don’t forget the keys under the mat.
Childhood stars shine.
Always stay humble and kind.
Go to church ’cause your momma says to.
Visit grandpa every chance that you can.
It won’t be a waste of time.
Always stay humble and kind.
Hold the door say please say thank you.
Don’t steal, don’t cheat, and don’t lie.
I know you got moutains to climb but
Always stay humble and kind.
When the dreams you’re dreamin’ come to you,
When the work you put in is realized,
Let yourself feel the pride but
Always stay humble and kind.
Don’t expect a free ride from no one.
Don’t hold a grudge or a chip and here’s why.
Bitterness keeps you from flying.
Always stay humble and kind.
Know the difference between sleeping with someone
And sleeping with someone you love.
“I love you” ain’t no pick up line so
Always stay humble and kind.
Use to translate it into your own language!

IELTS Listening Test – Using the breaks well

IELTS Listening free exercise medical students

In the IELTS listening test a neat trick is to use the breaks well.

The test guidelines advise you:

“You will be given time to read through the questions before you listen. You will hear each recording of the Listening test only once. As you listen, write your answers on the question paper. At the end of the test, you will have 10 minutes to transfer your answers to the answer sheet in pencil.” Source IDP British Council 

Tip 1: Use extra time wisely.

When you are familiar with these instructions, you can use the additional time focusing on the the first exercise. 

Tip 2: Understand the main topic and make some guesses

With time given before each section, be sure to get the gist of what the speaker(s) will be talking about.  Here’s some steps you can take before each listening section begins:

  1. Scan and read information to understand the main topic
  2. Make guesses of what kind of answers are expected.  For example, ask yourself if you need to listen for a telephone number, a name of a person, title of a book, a price.
  3. Also determine what grammatical structure the missing information will be, ie. a verb, noun, pronoun, adjective, adverb or prepositional phrase
Tip 3:  If you have extra time at the end of the section, focus on the next section

Having extra time is great. Use it wisely by reading the next section before it starts.

Tip 4:  Be careful! You will only hear each section once.
The next skill that needs to be developed is an awareness of the basic rhythm or flow of topic questions and answers.  Sometimes, you might miss out on waiting for an answer when actually the speakers have already provided it and moved on.
So what should you do?  If you feel you may have been waiting too long for an answer, turn your eyes quickly to the next question. Has the speaker already started speaking about this next question topic? If so, be sure to “let go”. Stop being fixated on the one you missed. Transfer your concentration onto the next.  Otherwise, you could risk missing out not just on one point but two or three.  
Afterwards, when you have time to transfer your answers at the end of the test, the answer to the one you missed might pop in your mind after having heard the whole discussion. This problem is more likely to happen before a page turn. So be on your guard.

Tip 5: Check your answers and don’t forget spelling counts.

 You will have 10 minutes to transfer your answers to the answer sheet.  Be sure to use this time to make guesses for answers that you may have left blank.  And check grammar and spelling.
When transferring your answers to the answer key, pay attention. Make sure you put your answers in the right spot.  Not answering 1 question may lead you to filling in your answers in the wrong spot.  It’s best to put something in than nothing at all for this reason.  Again – trust your gut and make a guess.

Should you need to know more about the IELTS test please visit this page.

Should you wish to learn more about private IELTS preparation courses offered by The Boston School, please visit this page

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Car Talk Radio

General English video grammar exercise


Car was tips car talk This is a show that is so dear to my heart.  I remember listening to this program while driving my first car on the weekends in Boston.  It always made me laugh out loud, and by the way, this was way before the term “LOL” was born!

For those of you who might have a strong interest in the car faults, mysterious noises, basic car mechanics, or are just “petrol heads,” who know when to laugh at a situation, or who like to solve puzzles, the Boston accent and/or a combination of all that in one!…I can highly recommend reviewing their podcasts and show highlights. 

Here’s a sample podcast from the series:


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