​Before Breakfast Lessons
Monday, October 3, 2016  
You are welcome back to this week’s lessons.
1. The word “trickish” is an acceptable English word.

2. The full rendition of the acronym “WASSCE” is “West African Senior School Certificate Examination.”
:)We apologise sincerely for the oversight.  
❇Confused words
Do you have difficulties choosing between these pairs? Weather/Whether and Verses/Versus
This is the state of the air and atmosphere at a particular time and place; the state of the atmosphere with respect to heat or cold, wetness or dryness, calm or storm, clearness or cloudiness. 
Whether is used to indicate choices or possibilities; which one of the two. Sometimes it means “if”.
1. The weather is cold today.

2. I want to know whether you want Fanta or Coca Cola.

3. *We haven’t decided weather we will go (or not.)

We haven’t decided whether we will go.

This refers to one of the parts of a chapter of the Bible; a writing in which words are arranged in a rhythmic pattern; a line of metrical writing. “Verse” as a verb means “to familiarize by close association, or experience. 
Example: He is well versed in linguistics. 
This is used to indicate two different things, choices, etc., that are being compared or considered; in contrast to; against each other.
1. He quoted from the last verse in the fifth chapter. 
2. Psalm 23 has six verses.
3. Poetry is written in stanzas and verses.
4. Barcelona versus Real Madrid is no longer a nerve-racking encounter.  
❇Misused words/expressions

If I was you
So many years ago, this was an acceptable expression, but now it no longer is. It defies the everyday subject verb agreement between “I” and “was” we know. The expression is a subjunctive. It is used to express a wish or a condition which usually is impossible to happen. So instead of saying, “If I was you”, rather say, “If I were you”.  
1. If I were a boy, I would discipline myself very well. (The speaker is likely to be a girl, and her wish is naturally impossible to happen.)

2. *I would beat him if I was you.

I would beat him if I were you.

Let’s look at the sentences below critically.
1. *Are you understanding me?
2. *I’m knowing the answer.
3. *Are you believing me? 
In English, verbs can be categorized broadly into two groups — dynamic verbs and static verbs. Dynamic verbs, also called “action verbs” express the progression of actions and activities. Example: kill, jump, beat, stand, etc. Static verbs, on the other hand, describe states, conditions and perceptions, and are therefore not readily identified or noticed as is the case with dynamic verbs. Example, know, trust, believe, owe, understand, believe, etc. Thus, static verbs are usually in the present or past tense form. It becomes unacceptable when a static verb is used in the continuous (ing) form. The only exception to this rule is when it is used as a gerund — a verb used as a noun. Example, “believing” can be used as a noun.  When a person “believes” you, it is a state of mind, a mental decision or a perception, and not a continuous process.  It usually doesn’t change with time. “Believing” sounds as if it is a process. If someone is “understanding” something, how can you see it? Is it visible like the action of “jumping” or “eating”? It is a condition or a state of the mind. Try to avoid using these verbs in the continuous form: understand, believe, trust, hope, hear, love, hate, etc.
The above sentences should read,
1. Do you understand me?

2. I know the answer. ✅
3. Do you believe me? ✅
4. *Are you hating me?

Do you hate me?

5. Your understanding of the work is impressive.✅ (Understanding is a gerund here, i.e. a verb used as a noun.)
Castle \ˈka-səl\
It is a large building usually with high thick walls and towers that was built in the past to protect against attack; a large expensive house. The “t” in the word is written but not pronounced: it is always silent. Just pronounce it like “hassle”.
❇Spell check

“Millennium” is a period of 1,000 years. Take notice of the spelling: it has double ‘l” and a double “n”. 
1. We can sing songs about the millennium passed. 
❇Ghanaianisms/Ghanaian English 🙊😜🙉 
💠Listen to TV news
Some people have argued that they are permitted to use “Listen to TV news” because even when they are unable to see the visual broadcast, they actually hear the sounds from the broadcast. That is quite understandable, but not to be listened to. The major difference between a radio broadcast and that of a television is the visual aspect of the latter’s broadcast. We watch TV news and we listen to news on the radio. 
1. *I was watching news on the radio❌
I was listening to the news on the radio.

I was watching the news on the radio. ✅
2. I watched the news on Before Breakfast Lessons (BBL) TV yesterday.

❇Idiom for the day
💠A little bird told me.
This is said when you don’t want to reveal the source of your information.
1. Rose: “How did you know that I was here?”
Claudia: “Oh, a little bird told me.”

2. A little bird told me that MTN is offering free credit today.✅
❇Word for the day
Someone who spoils other people’s fun or enjoyment; a killjoy; a wet blanket.
1. If you don’t want to party, at least don’t be a spoilsport.
2. We were all having fun until Karin decided to be a spoilsport.
❇Conversation Tip

💠When a person is too timid, you can encourage him by saying,
1. Show some courage.
2. Show some spirit.
3. Show a little resolve.
4. Don’t be spineless.
5. Come on, you can do this.
6. Don’t lose your nerve.
7. Are afraid of your own shadow?
8. Come on, loosen up!
FM ▶ Frequency Modulation
AIDS ▶ Acquired Immune Deficiency Virus
❇American English versus British English
🅰mer     🆚     🅱ri
Post             Mail
Program        Programme
Cellphone      Mobile phone
Your language is your bargaining power, so make it skilled
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©Eric Nuamah Korankye (Hamlet)