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IELTS Preparation Series 3, Episode 24: Word Formation


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Xem lời thoại bên dưới:

0:13

Hello, and welcome to Study English, IELTS Preparation. I'm Margot Politis.

0:18

A useful skill in all aspects of English is knowing how new words are formed with prefixes

0:25

and suffixes, and how adding those prefixes and suffixes changes the meanings of words.

0:32

First, let's watch this story about recycling wooden barrels - or kegs - for storing wine.

0:39

Listen carefully for words that have a prefix, or a suffix - or both:

0:45

Wine involves a great deal of recycling. Not recycling the wine itself, but the barrels

0:52

and the kegs that wine is stored in. The barrel's very important. The wood it's made from imparts

0:59

flavour and texture and character to the wine. But after a while the wood loses those qualities

1:05

and the barrel has to be taken apart, the wood refurbished, the barrel put back together.

1:13

From vineyards around Australia, tired old barrels arrive to be renewed. Glenn is a cooper,

1:20

practising an ancient craft with its own language.

1:24

Well, when they come in, we just start taking the ends out of the barrels, loosening the

1:29

hoops on one end, take the head out, retighten it, turn the barrel over and do the same thing

1:35

so that we've opened both ends of the barrel. And we use a grinder with a rotary planer

1:40

head on it to shave, say, four or five mill out of the inside of that barrel so that we

1:45

expose all the fresh oak flavours. The barrel is dismantled. You get different-width staves.

1:51

You get wider ones, you get narrower ones. But you might say, "Why don't they make a

1:56

square barrel?" Well, they have, and it didn't work. So coopering lives on.

2:02

A word that cannot be broken down into parts is called the root, or base word. A prefix

2:09

may be added to the beginning of a word, changing the meaning. And a suffix may be added to

2:15

the end of a word. Let's look at one example.

2:18

From vineyards around Australia, tired old barrels arrive to be renewed.

2:24

Let's look at the word 'renewed'. The base, or root word is 'new', the opposite of old.

2:32

It's an adjective. A prefix 're' can be added before the word. The word is now 'renew'.

2:40

Adding this prefix not only changes the meaning, it changes the function of the word. 'Renew'

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is a verb. The prefix 're' means 'again'. So the new word is a verb that means 'to make

2:54

new again'.

2:55

The suffix 'ed' has a grammatical function you probably know - it changes the tense of

3:02

the verb to simple past tense. So the meaning of 'renewed' is 'made new again'.

3:11

Tired old barrels arrive to be made new again.

3:15

There are some other examples of the prefix 're' in that story. Listen:

3:20

Wine involves a great deal of recycling. Not recycling the wine itself, but the barrels

3:27

and the kegs that wine is stored in. But after a while the wood loses those qualities and

3:33

the barrel has to be taken apart, the wood refurbished, the barrel put back together.

3:39

Well, when they come in, we just start taking the ends out of the barrels, loosening the

3:44

hoops on one end, take the head out, retighten it, turn the barrel over and do the same thing

3:50

so that we've opened both ends of the barrel.

3:53

The three words were: recycled, refurbished and retighten.

4:00

Recycled means to treat something so that it can be used again. Refurbished means restored

4:06

- made better, and to retighten, is simply to tighten again. There is another suffix

4:14

that can be added to 'refurbish' - 'ment'. This suffix carries the meaning of 'an action,

4:21

process or result of', so refurbishment is the process of refurbishing something.

4:29

There are many words in English that use this suffix: development; government; employment;

4:39

entertainment; to name just a few.

4:43

Now, we've heard a bit about the process of refurbishing and recycling wine barrels - but

4:49

who does this work? What is that person called?

4:53

From vineyards around Australia, tired old barrels arrive to be renewed. Glenn is a cooper,

5:00

practising an ancient craft with its own language.

5:05

That person is called a 'cooper'. A cooper is someone who makes barrels. The 'er' suffix

5:12

- carries the meaning 'the person who does that thing' - for example:

5:17

A teacher teaches. A driver drives.

5:22

A footballer plays football.

5:25

And the 'er' suffix isn't only used for people - it can be used for things. Listen:

5:33

Well, when they come in, we just start taking the ends out of the barrels, loosening the

5:37

hoops on one end, take the head out, retighten it, turn the barrel over and do the same thing

5:43

so that we've opened both ends of the barrel. And we use a grinder with a rotary planer

5:48

head on it to shave, say, four or five mill out of the inside of that barrel so that we

5:53

expose all the fresh oak flavours.

5:56

A grinder is a machine that grinds. A planer is a machine, or blade that planes - or makes

6:04

wood smooth. The 'er' suffix has another function too. Listen:

6:10

The barrel is dismantled. You get different-width staves. You get wider ones, you get narrower

6:16

ones.

6:18

You get wider ones. The 'er' suffix here is added to an adjective to make a comparative

6:25

adjective.

6:25

We looked before at the word 'retighten', which means 'to tighten again'. Let's look

6:35

at the word 'tighten'. The root word is tight - an adjective. When we add the 'en' suffix,

6:43

it becomes a verb - to make tight. What is the opposite?

6:49

Well, when they come in, we just start taking the ends out of the barrels, loosening the

6:53

hoops on one end, take the head out, retighten it, turn the barrel over and do the same thing

7:00

so that we've opened both ends of the barrel. The opposite of 'tighten' is 'loosen'. Again,

7:07

the 'en' suffix is used to make the verb - 'loosen' and 'loosening'.

7:13

Here's another example of an 'ing' suffix:

7:16

The barrel is dismantled. You get different-width staves. You get wider ones, you get narrower

7:22

ones. But you might say, "Why don't they make a square barrel?" Well, they have, and it

7:27

didn't work. So coopering lives on.

7:31

Coopering lives on. We've already seen that a cooper is someone who makes barrels. So

7:37

coopering is the work of making barrels. Notice here that the word 'coopering' in the sentence:

7:45

'Coopering lives on' is the subject of the verb 'lives'. This is an example of a gerund

7:52

- where a verb is acting as a noun in a sentence.

7:55

Finally, notice that when describing a process we often use passive voice verbs to describe

8:06

the actions in the process. Listen for the verbs:

8:10

The barrel's very important. The wood it's made from imparts flavour and texture and

8:15

character to the wine. But after a while the wood loses those qualities and the barrel

8:20

has to be taken apart, the wood refurbished, the barrel put back together.

8:27

The barrel has to be taken apart. Notice that in a passive construction the agent, or person

8:34

who does the action, the taking apart, is not mentioned - so the object - the barrel

8:42

is acted on by the verb.

8:43

There are two other examples in this description: the wood refurbished, the barrel put back

8:51

together. Because this is a list of actions in a description of the process, the speaker

8:58

leaves out 'has to be', which applies to all of the steps.

9:03

The barrel's very important. The wood it's made from imparts flavour and texture and

9:08

character to the wine. But after a while the wood loses those qualities and the barrel

9:14

has to be taken apart, the wood refurbished, the barrel put back together.

9:23

That's all for now.

9:24

Remember to visit our website where you can watch this episode again, as well as any other

9:30

episode of Study English, IELTS Preparation.

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I'll see you next time.

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