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.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Add Insult to Injury

When you "add insult to injury," you worsen a bad situation.

Example: Sam added insult to injury when he made fun of Alex's fall from the tree.

image courtesy of

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Cost an Arm and a Leg

When something, "costs an arm and a leg," it is very expensive.

Example: A Chanel handbag costs an arm and a leg.

image courtesy of

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Best Thing Since Sliced Bread

If something is the "best thing since sliced bread," it is a great innovation, invention, or idea.

Example: Luke believes that the IPhone is the best thing since sliced bread.

Wheat bread and Wheat
image courtesy of

Thursday, January 14, 2016

At the Drop of a Hat

If something happens "at the drop of a hat," it happens instantly.

Example: Alex changes her mind at the drop of a hat.

Straw hat Stock Photos
image courtesy of

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Barking Up the Wrong Tree

When you "bark up the wrong tree," you are accusing the wrong person for something or looking in the wrong place for something.

Example: Lola was barking up the wrong tree when she accused Manny of stealing her pencil case.

image courtesy of

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

An Axe to Grind

When you, "have an axe to grind" with someone, you have an issue or problem with someone.

For example: Madison has an axe to grind with Alex because Alex is consistently rude to her.

image courtesy of

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

To Be on Thin Ice

When you are "on thin ice," you are in a risky situation.

For example, Jessie was on thin ice when she asked her angry mother to borrow the car.

image courtesy of