English - the way i learn it

Sourav Banerjee MA,MSW (Shabda Bramha) (8842 Points)

20 August 2011  

I hail from a sub-urban area and I studied in a Bengali medium school having English as a second language. And in those days, in a Bengali medium school, a student was not required to study English before reached Class – V. No wonder, I had to struggle hard during my formative years to come to terms with the language.

For these reasons, I can easily put myself in someone’s shoes who is having a torrid time mastering English - the global language. Hence, this humble attempt to share whatever little knowledge I have been able to muster over the years with the members of the CACLUBINDIA. I take this opportunity to convey my heart-felt thanks to EACH AND EVERY MEMBER of this closely neat family, who has, through their selfless endeavour, taken the concept of sharing to an unsurpassable height.


From reading grammar books to translating passages to toiling hard with précis, numerous methods have been adopted by us – the students – to iron out our weaknesses in the English language. But there’s no denying the fact that VERB and PREPOSITION plays the spoil sport more than any other parts of speech. Necessary, therefore, is

Ø to read these two subject matters again and again, paying particular attention to the CONSTRUCTION of sentences given as examples.

Ø To look for practical examples in whatever resource you come across.


Second important thing is to build a good VOCABULARY – easier said than done. Each day, I’ll try to post 3 to 5 interesting words/phrases that are either currently in vogue or are worth knowing in somewhat detail (shall stop doing so only in the event of not receiving any response – good or bad).


     The third necessity is to note down any SENTENCE in any book or newspaper or journal etc. that evokes interest in you and to dissect its structure. I’ll be more than happy to take part in the discussion on any such endeavour.

I thank every reader for her/his time and patience and urge them to respond if they find it helpful.



·       The BSE sens*x tanked 371 points on Thursday … .


TANK (Verb) :

1           - To decrease quickly or be very unsuccessful: ***Important***

§  Not long after the chairman resigned, shares in the company tanked.

2          -  (British English informal) To travel very fast in a car or vehicle.

3          -  (Informal) To fail badly and be very unsuccessful:

§  His last film tanked in the States, but did well in the UK.

TANK IT       - To deliberately lose a sports game that you could have won.


·       I failed to understand how the Committee could commit such a patent error on the face of it.

PATENT (Adjective):

To describe something, especially something bad, in order to indicate in an emphatic way that you think its nature or existence is clear and obvious.

§  This is a patent lie.                           


Used to say that something seems true but that you think there may be other facts about it which are not yet clear:

§  It looks, on the face of it, like a minor change in the regulations.

§  On the face of it, his suggestion makes sense.


·    Anti-graft mood in India.


GRAFT (Noun):

                        Hard Work (Informal; especially British English):

§  Our success has been due to sheer hard graft.

The practice of obtaining money or advantage by the dishonest use of influence or power (American English):

§  Anna Hazare is fighting hard to end graft in public life.



1.      Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English.

2.      The Times of India.

3.      The Telegraph.