The English Language Institute (ELI) of the Center for International Service has offered innovative academic programs for students learning English as a Second Language since the late 1970’s. Our course of study is designed to challenge and engage students. Students are immersed in the language, culture, and ethnicity of New York City. Classes range from beginner to the advanced level.

Monday, May 25, 2015

KNOCK YOUR SOCKS OFF

If something "knocks your socks off," it surprises you immensely.

Example: We have a surprise party planned for Janet that's going to knock her socks off.

                                                      image courtesy of dreamstime.com

Monday, May 18, 2015

WHEN PIGS FLY or WHEN HELL FREEZES OVER

The idioms "when pigs fly" and "when hell freezes over" are both a sarcastic way to say that something will never happen.

Example:
Max: Tom said he's finally going to sell that old car of his.
Sue: Oh yeah? When pigs fly! He loves that piece of junk too much to give it up.


Monday, May 11, 2015

SOCIAL BUTTERFLY

Someone who is a "social butterfly" is a very extroverted, charismatic, and sociable person who can easily "fly" from one social group to the next.

Example: 
Toni will not have any trouble fitting in at her new school. She's a real social butterfly. She's have friends in no time.

image courtesy of dreamstime.com



Tuesday, May 5, 2015

BLOW HOT AND COLD ** SNAP AT ** STORM OFF

**Blow hot and cold - be changeable in his/her attitude or behavior.

**Snap at - speak angrily to someone

**Storm off - leave angrily 


Example

Mike: How do you like your new neighbor?
Samantha: It's hard to say. She blows hot and cold. On Monday, she was friendly and welcoming. She petted my dog, Sally. Then Tuesday, she snapped at me about Sally being on her lawn and she stormed off.





Monday, April 27, 2015

SEE EYE TO EYE

When two people "see eye to eye " on something, they agree. This idiom is often used in the negative form to show disagreement.

Example: Tom and Melissa just don't see eye to eye when it comes to planning their wedding. She wants to have a small wedding to save money  and he wants a big one that will cost a lot.


image courtesy of dreamstime.com

Friday, April 24, 2015

OPEN A CAN OF WORMS

If you "open a can of worms," you are creating a situation that will cause more problems or be unpleasant for the people involved. 

Example: Don't ask Tom about why he has been angry with his brother. Don't get involved at all. You'd be opening a can of worms.


A boy opening a can of worms
picture courtesy of dreamstime.com

Monday, April 13, 2015

KEEP UP WITH THE JONESES

Jones is a common English surname. Someone trying to keep up with the Joneses is trying to compete with his/her successful neighbors by having the same lifestyle or acquiring the same possessions, like a fancy car, to prove equal status.

Example: After their neighbors painted their house, Mrs. Smith insisted that they too paint their house. She was trying to keep up with the Joneses.



                 image courtesy of dreamstime.com