Now that you’ve completed the Talk in Action interactive visit of the Palais Royal neighborhood, it’s time to test what you learned. Let’s see if you do better on the quiz:

1. How do you pronounce the following words? colonel, choir, hyperbole, receipt, hierarchy, recipe, cough, whistle

2. How do you say the following sentences in English?
Je veux profiter de mes vacances.
Désolée, mais j’ai un empêchement.
J’aime bricoler à la maison.
C’est n’importe quoi !
Qu’est-ce que tu veux que je fasse ?

3. What is the difference between the following pairs of words?
Trip vs. Travel
Beside vs. Besides
Lose vs. Loose

4. Which of the following sentences are correct?
I. I am living in Paris for 5 years.
II. I have lived in Paris for 5 years.
III. I have been living in Paris for 5 years.
I. Where have you traveled this year?
II. Where did you travel this year?

5. How do you say the following words in English?

Un sweat
Une fashion victim
Un parking
Un pressing
Un smoking

6. What do the following words mean?


Still have questions? Here are the explanations for each answer:

1. How do you pronounce the following words? 


> More pronunciation tips: Les prononciations bizarres mais vraies de 10 mots anglais courants.

2. How do you say these sentences in English?

Je veux profiter de mes vacances. I want to enjoy my holidays (U.S. vacation).
Désolée, mais j’ai un empêchement. I’m sorry, but something came up.
J’aime bricoler à la maison. I like doing home improvement projects/doing odd jobs at home/DIY projects.
C’est n’importe quoi ! That’s ridiculous!/That’s nonsense!
Qu’est-ce que tu veux que je fasse ? What do you want me to do?

3. What is the difference between these pairs of words? 

Trip vs. travel. Beside/Besides. Lose/loose.

Trip vs. travel

Travel (uncountable noun) and traveling (UK: travelling) are used to mean the general activity of moving from place to place. You do NOT say “a travel”. We say: ‘I love traveling’ and’ ‘We traveled through Spain and into Italy.’ In these cases travel is not interchangeable with journey.

Trip (countable noun) is used to talk about a short stay somewhere; it could be taking a short holiday, or t staying at a hotel overnight for business; very often it is a short journey to another country. We often say: a business trip; a weekend trip; a day trip, and a school trip. But you can also ‘take a long trip’ somewhere (ex. How was your trip to Japan?).

*Bonus: Journey (countable noun) is usually a long trip of some type; it can be any kind of trip, but the implication is that it may be difficult and that discoveries might be made along the way. Ex. A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.  

Beside vs. Besides

Beside is a preposition, which means next to or near. It is always followed by a noun. Example: She sat beside him during lunch. Besides means “in addition to” or “except” and can be used as a preposition or an adverb. Example (preposition): Besides (= in addition to) its famous pizza, the restaurant is also known for its delicious pasta.

When used as an adverb, besides is used to introduce additional information. Example: I’m not ready to get married yet. Besides, I enjoy living alone. (besides comes before the new information: “I enjoy living alone”).

Lose vs. loose

Lose is a verb that means “to fail to win” or “to misplace.” Loose is an adjective that means “not tight” or “not contained.”

Examples: Don’t lose your keys.

When John lost a lot of weights, his pants that had been too tight became loose.

>> More English Word Pairs that are Often Confused


4. Which of the following sentences are correct?

I. I am living in Paris for 5 years.
II. I have lived in Paris for 5 years.
III. I have been living in Paris for 5 years.
I. Where have you traveled this year?
II. Where did you travel this year?

I. I am living in Paris for 5 years. We can’t use the present simple when talking about something that started in the past.
II. I have lived in Paris for 5 years.
III. I have been living in Paris for 5 years.

The difference between sentence II and sentence II is very subtle. While they are both grammatically correct, they transfer different meanings.
I. Where have you traveled this year?
II. Where did you travel this year? Imagine it is July when you ask this question. Because the year is not yet over, you should not use the simple past tense, but the present perfect. However, if you know the person does not plan on traveling any more in the year (because it’s December, for example), you can use the simple past.

Using the Present Perfect

We use the present perfect:

  • for something that started in the past and continues in the present:

Example: They’ve been married for almost fifty years. It’s been raining for hours.

  • when we are talking about our experience up to the present:

Example: I have never been to Asia.

Let’s return to one of the examples from the quiz:

II. I have lived in Paris for 5 years.
III. I have been living in Paris for 5 years.

These sentences are both correct, but have slightly different meanings:

We use the simple form of the present perfect (I have lived) for actions which we think are:

• finished: I’ve done my homework. (the homework is finished)

• permanent: I’ve lived in Paris for 5 years. I’ve worked for this company for most of that time. (I think I will remain in Paris and continue to work for the same company)

We use the continuous form of the present perfect of tenses for actions which we think are:

• unfinished or in progress: I’ve been doing my homework. (it isn’t finished yet)

• temporary: I’ve been living in Paris for six months. I’ve been working as an au pair. (I think I will leave Paris one day- my job is temporary)


5. How do you say the following words in English?

un sweat, un fashion victim, un parking, un pressing, un smoking

Un sweat: In English the loose, warm sweater, typically made of cotton that people wear when exercising or as leisurewear is called a sweatshirt. To sweat is a verb that means to perspire. Be sure to correctly pronounce sweat in English. 

Example: In autumn, I wear a sweatshirt when I go running.

Une fashion victim: Both the French and English versions of the term fashion victim refer to someone who always wears very fashionable clothes, but in English, the term is used as an insult. It means that the person follows styles even when it makes them look bad or silly. The French meaning of fashion victim is closer to the English term fashionista.  

Example: She looks ridiculous! What a fashion victim!

Un parking: The French term un parking can be translated as parking lot (US) or car park (UK). Example: The company’s management decided to build a new parking lot so that employees would have a place to put their cars.

Un smoking: The French term un smoking can be translated as tuxedo (US) or dinner jacket (UK) in English. It describes a type of jacket a man would wear to a formal event, usually with matching pants and a bowtie.

Example: James Bond is Bond is typically portrayed as a gentleman wearing a tuxedo.

Un pressing: dry-cleaner’s; In English we use dry cleaner’s to describe the place where clothes are cleaned by a professional with a chemical product. Dry cleaning is the name of the process.  Une laverie is laundromat (US) or launderette (UK) in English.

Example: I went by the dry-cleaner’s to pick up my jacket. On Sundays I wash my clothes at the local laundromat.

6. What do the following words mean? 

eventually, actually, deceive, resume, sensible

Eventually: Eventually is not a synonym for éventuellement. It does not mean “possibly” but rather “in the end” or “sooner or later.” When we say something will happen eventually, we mean we are sure it will happen but don’t know when. Imagine you are a tourist looking for your hotel. You ask someone to help you and she says, “Walk down that street for ten minutes and eventually you’ll see your hotel on the left.” She does not mean that it is possible that you will see your hotel, but rather that it is a sure thing. You will see your hotel at the end of your 10 minute walk.

Actually: Actually is not a synonym for actuellement. It means in fact or in reality.

Example: Person A: Are you hungry? Would you like some cake? Person B: Actually, I already ate. Thanks though!

Deceive: Deceive is not a synonym for décevoir. It means to intentionally cause someone to believe something that is not true, especially for personal benefit. Deception refers to when you trick or fool someone whereas disappoint (décevoir) means to fail to meet hopes or expectations.

Example: He was accused of deceiving the customer about the condition of the car.

Resume: The verb to resume is not a synonym for resumer. It refers to the action of continuing following an interruption.

Example: Let’s take a lunch break and we will resume the meeting at 2 p.m. The noun resume refers to a summary of work experience (CV).

Sensible: Sensible in English does not have the same meaning as the word sensible in French. The English word sensible refers to being practical or using good judgment. The French word sensible translates to sensitive in English (easily susceptible to emotions).

Example: Sensible shoes or clothes are practical and strong rather than fashionable and attractive.  

>> Envie de plus d’astuces pour booster votre anglais ? Découvrir nos autres activités ludiques en anglais !