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Test your understanding of this English lesson

Test your understanding of the English lesson by answering these questions. You will get the answers and your score at the end of the quiz.
My mom is ____________. She believes the number 4 is bad luck.

Superstitions are scientific.

Many Westerners believe if you find a penny and pick it up:

You will have seven years of bad luck:

You will have bad luck if you _________ an umbrella inside your house.

Your wish _______________true if you blow out all of your birthday candles on the cake.

If you say "break a leg" to someone, they _________ well in a performance.

Which of the following is not a superstition?

The following two sentences are both grammatically correct and mean the same thing:
If you wear garlic, vampires will stay away from you. Vampires will stay away from you if you wear garlic.

_____  bring my lucky pen to the test, I will do really well.


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107 Comments on “Learn English with Superstitions: vocabulary, culture, and the first conditional”


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very good lesson

Friday, December 29th 2017

10/10
However, conditional sentences always make me dizzy and complicated. I must watch the video repeatedly! And yes, the number 4 is avoided because of its sound, which is the same with ‘death’ in Korean, Japanese and Chinese.

Friday, December 29th 2017

    Conditional sentences are little bit difficult for me too. In my native language (Slovenian) we use future times for both cause and effect sentences. In Slovenian language we would say:
    If you WILL pick a penny, you will have a luck.
    In English it is without WILL word in cause sentence. Pretty confusing, requires me to take care.

    Friday, December 29th 2017

      We have the same in Russian)))

      Tuesday, January 2nd 2018

    I saw in documentary movies at rocked launching countdown the number 5 is skipped, like:
    10, 9, 8, 7, 6, (pause), 4, 3, 2, 1, fire.

    and I thought this is some bizarre superstition to skip number 5, but it actually isn’t. Number 5 is skipped, because word five starts with the same sound like fire. You know it could happen: “7, 6, fire” and person responsible for pressing “fire” button just pressing it little bit to early.

    Friday, December 29th 2017

      I didn’t know about what you said. Over here, in Japan, we no longer care about number 4 or other figures. Here, 8 is thought to be a lucky number because of its shape in Chinese characters. Thanks for your comment.

      Friday, December 29th 2017

    ty for your explanations.

    Sunday, December 31st 2017

I thought “will” and “if” weren’t used in one sentence . Please , explain to me , this rule doesn’t work anymore or it’s just an exception .

Friday, December 29th 2017

    the video is very clear just watch it again

    Friday, December 29th 2017

Tnk u teacher Emma. i’ve been watched this lesson for 2 times.

Friday, December 29th 2017

10/10
talking about the superstition that says if you break a mirror you’ll have 7 years of bad luck some people beleive it in our country

Friday, December 29th 2017

Thanks Emma amazing lesson! In my country (Brasil) If a black cat across in your way, you Will have a bad day.

Friday, December 29th 2017

    We have the same in Slovenia (Europe) for black cats. The only way to get rid of unluck if black cat get in your way is to spit. If you are in car, then you need to open car’s window and spit out of it. Many people think this is stupid and they don’t do it o course.

    Friday, December 29th 2017

      We don’t have the spitting thing in North America! All this time, people have been just accepting their bad luck and not knowing there was a way to undo it. :P

      Sunday, December 31st 2017

        You are superstition amateurs. :)

        We have solution for every problem. Black cats on the road, spit on flour. It’s fixed. Someone says: “I have been driving car for ten years without an accident.” Knock on the wood and there is not going to be bad luck in the future. It’s fixed. Black bird flies to the near three branch that brings the bad luck. Open the window and shout to scare it to fly away. It’s fixed. Stop being a cry baby, get up and fix problems. :)

        Monday, January 1st 2018

    When writing in English don’t forget: Brazil is with Z and not with S. Regards!

    Friday, December 29th 2017

I got 8 correct out of 10 :)
Thanks a lot

Friday, December 29th 2017

Emma, you said in video that cause sentence has a present tense. Which one? Present Simple I suppose, isn’t it?
So for she/he/it verb gets “s” at the end because of present simple:

If she finds a penny, she will have good luck.

What about negative?
If she doesn’t learn, she won’t pass the exam?
because:
a) doesn’t learn (no “s” at the end, because there is already does)
b) “will not” = won’t.

Is this correct?

Friday, December 29th 2017

    of course you’re right , eg: if you work hard, you will get a promotion . f she studies hard in math she will succeed .
    if she does not study hard in math, she will not succeed

    Friday, December 29th 2017

      Emma has written the rule:
      If + subject + verb + (object),
      subject + will + verb + (object).

      It is really nice to break into such a simple structure. But from the rule itself it is not clear which tense verb should be in, unless lesson is listen very carefully.

      It is actually simpler to me if we break rule into tenses:
      If + Present Simple Tense,
      Future Simple Tense.

      Rule above is complex rule and requires understanding the sub-components like individual tense.

      Thanks yasser for your help.

      Monday, January 1st 2018

Thanks for the lesson….!!

Friday, December 29th 2017

Terrific!

Friday, December 29th 2017

if you leave a comment, you will get a lot of viewers.

Friday, December 29th 2017

thanks Emma , you’re perfect as usual >
superstitions exist in our Arabian country specially in Egypt , we don’t like no.13 , the crow is a symbol of the pessimistic ,we touch wood to prevent envy , no.5 is also to prevent envy > to be honest i don’t believe in it .it’s a bullshit. by the way i got 100.

Friday, December 29th 2017

which on is more correct :
1-if you find a penny , you’ll have good luck .
2-if you find a penny , you’ll have(a) good luck.

Friday, December 29th 2017

    I think the correct one is 1.

    General rules are:
    – a/an is before singular countable nouns,
    – without a/an before singular uncountable nouns,
    – without a/an before any plural forum of noun.

    Historically a or an became from word “one”. For example in old English they said:
    “I have one cup of tea.”
    but today in modern English we say:
    “I have a cup o tea.”
    You see “one” was changed into “a”. We can say one cup of tea, because I could drink two cups of tea etc. Cups of tea can be counted, “cup” is countable noun and before it we place a/an predicate.

    In the example you provided for “luck”, you can’t say: “I have one good luck”, “I have two good luck(s)” etc.
    Noun “luck” is uncountable noun so there should be no a or an predicate.

    If you would like to read more, I suggest to read about countable and uncountable nouns: https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/grammar/countable-nouns

    engvid.com web site:
    https://www.engvid.com/english-resource/countable-and-uncountable-nouns/

    engvid.com video tutorial:
    https://www.engvid.com/countable-uncountable-nouns-english-grammar/

    Saturday, December 30th 2017

If you proceed like this, we will be better English speaker.

Friday, December 29th 2017

Hi Emma. Thanks for your job. I like your lessons. Happy New Year.

Friday, December 29th 2017

Nice lesson Emma. Here in my country we have almost the same superstitions as in North America. I wish you and all the others from engVid a Very Happy New Year!

Friday, December 29th 2017

Thank you Emma

Friday, December 29th 2017

If you do not eat twelve grapes on new year’s eve, you will have a bad year. I find those superstitions quite foolish, but they are funny anyway.

Friday, December 29th 2017

I WAS GOOD IN THE QUIZ.

Friday, December 29th 2017

Got 10 ☺ Thank you Emma .

Friday, December 29th 2017

Emma ,thank you for your job. Your lessons are very clear. Happy New Year!

Friday, December 29th 2017

Excellent lesson. As today is December 30th,I wish you
a wonderful New Year.
You are a great teacher and I thank you for all the
lessons that you prepare so thoughtfully.
Happy New Year.

Saturday, December 30th 2017

The lesson was very nice :) Thank you

Saturday, December 30th 2017

This help me 😊 thanks

Saturday, December 30th 2017

Thank you very much, Enma, for this and all your lessons, always very helpful and interesting. Here some superstitions:
As a child, I used to heard an expression that said: What’s wrong with you? Did a one-eyed man look at you? It is assumed that if someone looks at you badly, as one-eyed man could do, that will get you bad luck.
If you stand up with your left foot, you will have bad luck that day.
It was also bad luck to spill the salt on the table
My wife’s aunt used to say that if you go under a ladder, you will not get marry.So I guess she didn´t :)

Saturday, December 30th 2017

    I haven’t heard the one about standing up with your left foot—but in English there is the expression “to get off on the wrong foot”, that is, “to start off with a bad impression”. If you got in an argument with someone right after meeting them and want to apologize, you might start with, “We seem to have gotten off on the wrong foot.” It seems to be a reference to running a race, where if you “start off on the wrong foot” you have made a mistake.

    Sunday, December 31st 2017

      In my country Slovenia, specially in the morning if someone is in bad move, little grumpy we say: “Why are you so grumpy, did you wake up with your left foot.” But probably Canadian version “wrong foot” is in my humble opinion very similar to “left foot”. Most of the people are right handed, so much better they do with right hand/foot like writing, eating with spoon, kicking a football ball etc. The right foot is “better” foot, and left one is let say the “wrong” foot. Kicking ball with left foot is kicking it with wrong one. Wrong foot = left foot.

      Monday, January 1st 2018

      Thank you very for your reply. Well, I think I was wrong, I mean get out of the bed with the left foot, as Rokaly say below. Have a wonderful 2018!

      Wednesday, January 3rd 2018

Thanks a lot, all the best to you
I say you”break a leg”.

Saturday, December 30th 2017

If you are superstitious, you will have bad luck XD
Thanks Emma!!!And Happy New Year!!!

Saturday, December 30th 2017

Thanks Emma and
Happy new year

Saturday, December 30th 2017

i got 10/10 yeayyyyyyy

Saturday, December 30th 2017

Hey Emma, very interesting lesson, Thank you!
just wanted to add that in the jewish tradition “13” is considered a very lucky number. when a kid turns 13 we celebrate his “Bar Mizva” in differnent ways.
moreover I studied chinese in University, there I learned that the reason chinese people consider the number 4 a bad luck number is because 4 is “si” in chinese which resembles exactly the word “si” that stands for the word death in the chinese language, that’s why this number is considered unlucky.
hope that was clear. Btw I have been following you for a very long time and you’ve helped me a lot with my English.
Thanks

Saturday, December 30th 2017

    Thanks a lot for your explanations.

    Sunday, December 31st 2017

      my plessure arash1 from Iran :)

      Sunday, December 31st 2017

    I am also Jewish, and I don’t think a bar mitzvah is at 13 because it’s a lucky number! (After all, in some traditions, a bat mitzvah is at 12 and in others at 13.) As far as I know, it is because it’s traditionally considered when you can be considered responsible for your own actions. (Source.)

    18 is a lucky number, though, because according to gematria (Jewish numerology) the letters in חי (chai, life) add up to 18. When I was 13, I got a lot of gifts that were cheques for a multiple of 18 :)

    Sunday, December 31st 2017

      thanks for the information!

      Monday, January 1st 2018

Hey I am good at English but my grammar is a little bad so if you guys help me with it i can make it!

Saturday, December 30th 2017

I got 10. Thank you Emma and Happy New Year!

Saturday, December 30th 2017

Thank you for the lessons. Can you use a darker marker?

Saturday, December 30th 2017

    That’s a good idea. Our lessons are filmed ahead of time, so this will not take effect for a while, but I’ll suggest using a wider/darker marker.

    Sunday, December 31st 2017

      In video words are written in one single black color and underlined in different colors. It would much better be seen if using multiple colors for words itself and underlining would be redundant.

      Monday, January 1st 2018

        It would still be a good idea to underline words, just in case people are colour-blind!

        Monday, January 1st 2018

          Do I understand you argument correctly? Color blinded people would see color of line, but not the color of text? Color blinded people do not distinguish colors between each other. Like if having two green colors they may see only single green color. It depends how color blinded a person is, it may even not distinguish between red, yellow and green. That is the reason lights on traffic lights are always at the exact the same position, top-bottom: red, yellow, green.

          In my humble opinion for color blinded people there is not requirement to use different colors, but different objects, like single line for one purpose, double line for another, dashed lines, dotted lines or circled text, squared text etc. There is plenty of different methods like underline text and number the objects that belongs together, or underline and type text like “verb”, “noun” etc.

          Tuesday, January 2nd 2018

          I think we are agreeing with each other!

          For most users, key words written in a different colour will stand out better. For example

          the cat sat on the mat

          But some people might not be able to see the difference in colour. So we should also use markings like outlines and underlines.

          the cat sat on the mat

          Wednesday, January 3rd 2018

Thank you Emma. I got 10 correct out of 10. Nice Lesson!. I am superstitious sometimes. In regard to what you said about “breaking mirrors”, well, I don’t believe in that superstition, because I have broken a lot of mirrors in my entire life, and otherwise I have had good luck.

Saturday, December 30th 2017

    You should not dismiss this theory so easily. It may still work. You probably broke many small mirrors and you got little bad luck for each of broken mirror. If you break big mirror, you will have huge bad luck. (First Conditional, thanks Emma). You also probably broke single thin glass mirrors and not double glass mirrors. Single glass little bad luck, double glass double bad luck. So you should use small thin glass mirrors to avoid bad luck.

    Just kidding. Superstitions are funny things, additional “shit” can be added to the table to make it looks like it’s working. It is interesting that people doing this think they are smart and by adding additional superstitions they solved the problem. But actually argument is weak in the first place and every attempt to fix it by adding additional superstition makes it much worse. Lets say this in mathematics. If there is 10% probability first argument is true and 10% for second argument then we are obligated to multiply them: 10/100 * 10/100 = 0.1 * 0.1 = 0.01 that is only 1%. Two combine superstitions each one of having probability of 10% in combine have only 1% chance to be true. Adding additional weak argument is multiplying with additional 10% which is 0.1 * 0.1 * 0.1 = 0.001 which is 0.1%. More “shit” is brought to the table, more “shit” you get, not less.

    Monday, January 1st 2018

Thank you Emma this is nice lesson

Saturday, December 30th 2017

Thank you, Mrs. Emma.
Happy new year!

Sunday, December 31st 2017

Thank Emma I have 9/10. I’m little bit confusing about the sentence 1st. I think it’s better if you choose a superstition, because superstition is noun, so it need the article A before, please explain more detail

Sunday, December 31st 2017

Great Emma, thanks!)

Sunday, December 31st 2017

Hi, I am Samim Ahmad Sherzad I am so pleased with Afghanistan that I am friends with you. I hope to guide and help with the training. Thank you all of your friends.

Monday, January 1st 2018

This lesson is a useful one

Monday, January 1st 2018

if i do the test i will have 100 score

Monday, January 1st 2018

in my culture superstition
if you sleep under the tree at night you may get sick that day

Monday, January 1st 2018

Thanks Emma for your lesson Happy New Year

Monday, January 1st 2018

Happy New Year. How do we reach the instructor directly?

Monday, January 1st 2018

Hi, my name is Ali.

Monday, January 1st 2018

Thank you for all, I´m improving more my English with your video class

Monday, January 1st 2018

What a good luck to learn English with Emma! It is not a superstitious lesson but it is talking about superstitious topics, then we will have a superstitious experience if we study this video class for sure because we now know some of the superstitious facts that maybe happen to us. Thanks a lot, teacher Emma, it has been a grateful explanation in American English, very useful as always.

Monday, January 1st 2018

Thank you, Emma.

Monday, January 1st 2018

Thank you, Emma. If I watch Engvid.com everyday, I will be good at English.

Monday, January 1st 2018

Perfect very good lesson thanks a bunch

Tuesday, January 2nd 2018

break a leg, Emma.
You are a nice teacher. Your videos are really interesting.

Thank you!

Tuesday, January 2nd 2018

Thank you Emma

Tuesday, January 2nd 2018

Thank you Emma it,s a very good lesson

Tuesday, January 2nd 2018

yes we have the same superstitions in France :))
thanks for this lesson I enjoyed it a lot D
and Happy New Year !
XXXX

Tuesday, January 2nd 2018

Thanks teacher, I really enjoy your lessons

Tuesday, January 2nd 2018

I want to practice english with everybody via skype: tuannhacsy

Wednesday, January 3rd 2018

Emma you always cute and the best, thank you for ever.

Thursday, January 4th 2018

Thanks Emma for the culture video

Thursday, January 4th 2018

I thought that these depends just for my country but I am so relax due to know all about :)

Friday, January 5th 2018

If I follow you, I will improve my English.

Friday, January 5th 2018

You got 8 correct out of 10Thanks teacher

Saturday, January 6th 2018

All of the explained Superstitions avalible to hear in Turkey. :)

Sunday, January 7th 2018

I was 100% ;) Thanks so much Emma…

Monday, January 8th 2018

Thanks

Monday, January 8th 2018

thanks a lot.

Wednesday, January 10th 2018

I’ve got nothing to say…

Friday, January 12th 2018

Nice lesson! Thanks!

Friday, January 12th 2018

I am new in this site but i see it it very simple and useful spacial with your explanatian ( Emma )

Friday, January 12th 2018

Thanks teacher!

Friday, January 12th 2018

I get 10 from 10 i like your explanation Emma

Saturday, January 13th 2018

thanks emma, you are the best

Saturday, January 13th 2018

why the article “a” after the object garlic in this sentence “didn’t typed exist If you wear “a” garlic, vampires will stay away from you”

Saturday, January 13th 2018

great lesson. Thank you Emma

Saturday, January 13th 2018

Very useful lesson. Thanks a lot Emma

Sunday, January 14th 2018

At least, I could understand first conditional 👌🏼

Sunday, January 14th 2018

Hi Emma Nice lesson! and Thanks!
and i love your lessons you are cool and
nice love it yeah.

Sunday, January 14th 2018

Thank you very much, Emma. Happy New Year!

Monday, January 15th 2018

Thanks a lot Emma.

Wednesday, January 17th 2018

Thanks emma ! Again a very good lesson from you

Wednesday, January 17th 2018

Thanks Emma!!!!!!

Thursday, January 18th 2018
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