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Book S6: Fluency in Topicwise English (Part - I)

Fluency in Topicwise English

Fluency in Topicwise English (Part - I)
By Prof. Kev Nair

"Two volumes of Fluency in Topicwise English help you widen your fluency range."
The New Indian Express.

Please note: This book is not sold separately. It is available for sale only as part of Fluentzy: The English Fluency Encyclopedia.

Sample pages from this book

Fluency in speaking about a wide range of topics

One of the important things the books in this series have been trying to do is to improve your command over everyday English vocabulary. You see, itís impossible to master a word just by learning its meaning or by learning the rules governing itís usage. These things are important, of course ?but these things would only help you get to Ďknow?that word. But when youíre aiming to become fluent, itís not enough that you know a word. What is needed is that you should have complete mastery over it. You should not only have a clear idea of its meaning and other features, but also have the experience of actually using it in various contexts. Yes, not in one context alone, but in different contexts. Thatís why Iíve been giving you word-groups by relating them to a particular communicative function, or to an idea or a notion, or to a particular topic.

Now, this is the point that Iíd like you to note carefully: The collections of word-groups that you get under various topics (such as ĎBanking? ĎBusiness?or ĎFood & Drink? help you in several ways. Let me stress just three of the ways they help you: Firstly, they help you associate the words in those word-groups to the topic they come under. This sort of association would increase your command over those words more effectively than if you had gone through the same word-groups individually (in isolation) without relating them to that topic. Secondly, the topic-wise collections of word-groups bring into one place the most useful word-groups and structures that have to do with a particular topic. This helps you concentrate on becoming fluent in speaking about that topic. And whatís more important, this helps you increase your command over a collection of words ?words that are related to one another through a common topic. Thirdly, each topic-wise collection of word-groups helps you look at the core words in the English language from a new point of view, and this adds to your flexibility in using those words ?to speak about any topic.

The third point needs some explanation. You see, though I give a large collection of word-groups under various topical headings, the words used are not of a technical or rare nature. No. I only concentrate on giving word-groups made up of frequently-occurring words ? that is, words that occur frequently in everyday conversations among educated speakers. These words make up the core vocabulary of the English language. And as far as fluency development is concerned, itís these words that are important. Thus, even if the topic dealt with is ĎBanking? the words in the word-groups you get are core words; even if the topic dealt with is ĎBusiness? the words in the word-groups you get are core words; even if the topic dealt with is ĎFood & Drinks? the words in the word-groups you get are core words. So what happens is this: Youíre made to use the core words not under one topic alone, but under a number of topics. And you come across the same words again and again under different topics ?as part of newer and newer word-groups. And even under the same topic, you come across most of the words several times ?and not just once.

The result of all this is this: You get to handle the core words again and again ?in context after context, and situation after situation. And you donít come across them in isolation; you come across them in the company of other words that frequently occur with them. And these other words are core words, too. This helps you relate each core word to the other core words that usually come before it and after it (in speech units) in various contexts. In other words, you get to learn the inter-relationship among words without any conscious effort ?and this is what helps you really master the core vocabulary of a language.

In this Supplement, weíre going to take up word-groups that have to do with seven topics that are of everyday interest. These are:

1). Driving.

2). Vehicle repairs and maintenance.

3). Clothes.

4). Weather.

5). Money.

6). Entertainment & Leisure.

7). Sports & Games.

These are high-frequency subjects, and theyíre of general importance any time you speak. But when they come up during conversations, most people often find it difficult to put their thoughts and ideas into words. Of course, Iím not talking about the language required for a theoretical or academic discussion of the various technical aspects of these topics. No. Iím talking about everyday situations when these topics come up. In day to day life, a large number of situations come up again and again when youíll have to say something or other about these seven topics. Yes, this is so even if you donít drive a car, and even if you are not going to get a car repaired, and even if you are not interested in sports or games. That is, these are topics that everyone would come across during everyday conversations ?topics on which everyone would find it necessary to say something or other quite frequently. Of course, the things you will find it necessary to say are usually of a general nature, and not of a technical nature, but most people find it difficult even to say things of a general nature about these topics.

The main reason is this: They donít have much experience in using the core words in English to express ideas related to these topics. As far as you are concerned, the practice material in this Supplement would put an end to this difficulty. The practice material youíre going to get now would give you ample training in handling the core words to express ideas related to these topics. And the result would be this: You not only become good at saying things related to these topics, but also get to see the core words at work in newer and newer contexts. And this will help you become better at handling the core words ?and become more fluent.

We shall now take up the word-groups under each of the topics. This is what you should do: Go through all the word-groups under a topic quickly once. Complete all the seven topics in this way once. Then come back to the first topic, pick up each word-group, and start uttering it several times ?ALOUD. Get your organs of speech to become familiar with the sounds of these word-groups. Here we go:


Group 1

?The police car overtook our car. ?On hills, you must use low gears. ?I was in a traffic jam for more than an hour. ?The car must be in neutral when you start the engine. ?Get out of the way ?the car is backing up. ?I hate driving along stony roads. ?Turn off this road at the next corner on the left. ?Letís park the car here. ?I got stuck in traffic for some time. ?Put the gear lever in the neutral position, and start the car. ?The authorities will have to do something to reduce the traffic jams in the city centre. ?The truck veered out of control, overturned, and hit a lamp-post. ?The sign said ĎNo Parking? ?This tyre is very worn ?you should get it changed. ?There were skid marks on the road where the accident happened. ?Pull up at the pedestrian crossing. ?Put the car in the garage, and lock the garage door. ? Most cars have four forward gears and a reverse. ?Iím thinking of learning to ride a motorbike. ?A car came in the opposite direction, and the driver dipped his headlights. ?The car kept hitting potholes and bumps. ?He was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving. ?He drives very well, and heís very cautious, too. ?He goes to work by car/on his motorbike. ?Whatís the correct tyre pressure for your tyres? ?The car was travelling very fast. ?The crash happened on a sharp bend. ?That car didnít have its headlights on. ?The car skidded and hit a lamp post, and the side of the car crumpled. ? If you use the choke when you start the car, you should push it in before you move forward. Yes, push the choke in when the engine is idling. ?A few speed-bumps will have to be installed in that street. ?For a moment, I was blinded by the lights of the oncoming car.

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?The driver pulled up in front of a shop. ?Slack off when you approach the junction. ?He got into the car and fastened the seat belt. ?The tyres squealed when he braked hard. ?Can you ride a motorbike? ?His car drove into the back of mine. ?He crashed the car into a tree and smashed it up. ?This is the second car heís smashed up. ?He was involved in a motor accident. ?She swerved to avoid another car. ?Is there a garage in this street? ?The car began to speed up. ?During the rush hour, the traffic would be bumper to bumper. ?She went round the building. ?He rides to work on a motorbike. ?The car was in third gear. ?My tyre burst when I was driving along a stony road. ?He released the hand brake, and the car moved forward. ?The car hit a lamp-post. ?There was heavy traffic on the roads. ?He got into the car, and wound the window down. ?In a few minutes, he began to speed up. ? He opened the door, got in and started the car. ?He pulled into a petrol station. ?I saw the car turning the corner. ?The car park is behind the building. ?He rides his motorbike to work. ?The driver got out of the bus. ?I was doing 60 kph, and a blue Maruti passed me at 90 kmph. ?He drives to work by car. ?Thatís a dangerous stretch of road. ? Letís go out for a drive. ?He got into the car and folded the roof down. ?These parking spaces are reserved for employees. ?I donít want to go with him ?heís not a safe driver. ?He let the engine tick over for about 30 seconds before the car moved forward. ?The car skidded on the road ?the driver had pulled up too fast. ?Weíve nearly run out of petrol. ?He pressed the accelerator hard. ?Is the hand brake on or off? ?Put the car in gear and drive on. ?This is a no-parking zone. ?Our car had a breakdown, and we had to push it into a garage. ?He braked sharply to avoid a car. ?He wound up the window, and locked the car door. ?He undid the seat belt, and got out of the car. ?Put your car into neutral when you stop at traffic lights. ? The car is now in bottom gear. ?Iíve got another puncture in my front tyre. ?He turned down a street where there was a ĎNo Entry?sign. ?Change into second gear when you go up the hill. ?He took the handbrake off, and the car moved forward. ?Why donít you roll the window down? ?The authorities have been doing their best to ease traffic congestion in the city. ?I thought he would pull up at the traffic lights, but he drove straight on. ?We saw a restaurant by the road, and pulled in. ?I think youíre a bit low on petrol. ?Our car was travelling at a speed of 60 kilometres per hour. ?Is this a parking place?


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