Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

English pretend understand a word

Do you pretend to understand words in English when you actually have no idea what the person said?

This can be detrimental to any connection that you’re trying to build.

It could get you in a lot of trouble!

Today you’ll get three phrases to make sure this never happens to you again.

Today’s lesson will help you because we’re going to give you the full phrases that will make you sound polite and will show you how to introduce the fact that you’re going to interrupt.

The textbooks only give you the phrases and if you throw that into the conversation without signaling to the speaker that you’re going to interrupt you will sound rude without knowing it.

Today we’ll show you what your textbooks will never show you.


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Listener question:

“Most of the time I am very confident about speaking in English if there is any challenge like to know the meaning of unpopular words. The actual challenge is when I read or hear those words for the first time and when those are being used in front of us, when native speakers are saying them to us and we don’t understand because we don’t know the meaning.”


Don’t just pretend that you understand the word.

Imagine if you’re being invited to do something and you don’t understand what the activity is because you don’t want to look “stupid.”

What if you agree to something and you show up and it’s not something that you want to do?

This could be dangerous!

Have the confidence to reach out ask the person to stop and clarify.


3 phrases to use:

  • “Woah, hold on, sorry, what does ____ mean?”
  • “Sorry, sorry, what do you mean by ______.”
  • “Wait, wait, I have never heard the word ____ before.”


What questions do you have from today?

Listen to this episode a few times, write down these phrases and copy our pronunciation.

Let us know your questions below.

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