Online lessons ” English for nursing”, 1-1 or in groups


Monument English is pleased to announce a new partnership with Simply Health Recruitment – a leading healthcare recruitment agency specializing in international Hiring.

As well as  recruitment of  nurses and doctors for  UK and Northern Ireland, Monument English holds specialized online English courses for nurses and doctors  needing  to improve their English. Our services include language screening, teaching, language test preparation and test facilitation. Monument English  has firmly established itself as a specialist provider of medical English to healthcare professionals across Europe.

Our Nursing course is designed to improve the communication skills and specialist English language knowledge of healthcare professionals, enabling them to work more confidently and effectively. With an emphasis on listening and speaking, the course covers core areas of nursing such as patient admission, taking medical specimens, patient handover, post-operation assessment and discharge planning. Authentic tasks and activities based on everyday nursing scenarios – from dealing with patients in pain to discussing lifestyle changes – make the course relevant and motivating. 

For more information or to have a free demo lesson and English assessment, contact us! or

Phrasal verbs-work work work

Many common English idioms, phrases, and proverbs include the word work. Read through some of my favorites and see if you can follow.

Monument English

Many common English idioms, phrases, and proverbs include the word work. Read through some of my favorites and see if you can follow.BeforeWorkAfterWork

Work (one’s way) into something

Meaning # 1: To slowly get into a space that is small and tight.

The glue gradually worked its way into the crack in the table

Meaning # 2: To slowly get more deeply involved in something.

Soon, I’ll work my way into my confusing new position at my job. It’s a difficult job, but I’ll get it.

Work (one’s way) through something.the-graduate

Meaning # 1: To earn money to put yourself through some kind of advanced education.

Sue worked her way through law school as a bartender.

Meaning # 2: To figure out something complicated. Confused

I worked through the detailed application process slowly.

Meaning # 3: To struggle with some emotional or physical pain.

Andy had to work through his crippling…

View original post 391 more words

2012 in review

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

What a wonderful year. Thanks everybody for your help and support. And Happy 2013!

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 9,000 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 15 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

Wish vs Hope

wish a merry xmasHello friends,
Many ESL students find it difficult to decipher the differences between hope and wish. Although these words are similar, they are used in slightly different situations. Misuse of these words can leave the student sounding awkward and unnatural.
Today’s 10 minute lesson will look at different situations in which hope and wish could be used. Our goal is for you to understand the differences and be able to use these words correctly in the future.


Wish is most commonly used in hypothetical (or imagined) situations: make a wish

I wish that I had a dog. (I don’t have a dog, but I would like to have one.)
I wish (that) you were here. (Unfortunately, you’re not, and I miss you.)
What do you wish you could change about the world?

Sometimes wish is used in greeting and expressions of goodwill:

We wish you a “Merry Christmas.”
They wished him “Happy Birthday.”
Wish me luck!

We can also use wish to express something that we would like to change or that we would like to see changed.geanie 2

I wish that you would clean your room more.
I wish that you would work less.
I wish that she were friendlier.


Hope can also be used in expressions of goodwill, but the grammar is slightly different:

I hope (that) you have a Merry Christmas. (future)
I hope (that) you had a nice Birthday. (past)

Can you use hope in a sentence to express goodwill?

Hope can be used to specify a desired outcome. For future hopes, the possibilities remain open, but for past hopes, the outcome has usually been determined already. hope

I hope you can come to the party on Saturday. (future possibility)
I was hoping that you would come to the party. (but you didn’t make it)
I had hoped to see you at the party on Saturday. (but I didn’t see you)
I hope to get an A on the exam. (it is still possible)
I hope it doesn’t rain tomorrow. (although it might)
He hopes to be elected President. (it’s possible that he will be elected)
She hoped you wouldn’t find her. (but you did)

Wish and hope are also used in certain types of requests and pleasantries. In such situations, wish carries a more definite and formal tone.

Wish is used for things we want in the present moment. Hope is used for things we want in the future.

I wish to see the doctor. (Right now)
I hope to see you again. (In the future)
I wish to speak to your manager (Here wish acts like a command)
I hope to speak to your manager. (This implies that you would like to speak to the manager, but you understand that it might not be possible).

Hope and wish can be used in similar ways but the meanings are different. cat lion

I wish I were thinner. (This means that I am not thin now, but I want to be thin now.)
I hope to be thinner. (This means that I am not as thin as I want to be, but I want to be thinner in the future.)
Notice the grammar in these sentences:
I wish I were …..
I hope to be …..
She wishes she were….
She hopes to be….

Time to practice

Fix the mistakes below. Some sentences might not need to be corrected:

I wish I speak good English.
I hope I am a manager.
I wish I am richer.
I hope to be more successful someday.
I wish you have a happy birthday!

Fill in the blank with the correct form of hope or wish.

Mary _____ she had a better job.
Jim ____ to be a professional athlete someday.
I _____ I were a better English student.
They ____ her a Merry Christmas.
We _____ that we would see her at the party.
I _____ it could have been different between us
The dog ________ that someone could play with him all day.
Bill _____to make it to the party this weekend.
Send your answers to me.

Note: I have adapted this grammar lesson from lesson plans I use with my students live online. Classes are 50 minutes long and can be done 1-1 or in small groups. For more information please visit my website

Register for a free demo

The future in the past

Hello friends, I thought we could start the week with a little grammar rule. Did you have to change your plans over the weekend? This is how you can express it.

Sentence construction using  “was/were going to”

I was going to eat out, but I didn’t have enough money….

There has been a change of plans….

Was there ever something you wanted to do very badly, but something else came up and prevented you from doing what you wanted to do?

What were you going to do at that time?

What changed your mind or stopped you from it?

We use “was/were going to” to describe events that were supposed to happen but didn’t.

ex.    I was going to graduate school last year, but I couldn’t leave my friends behind.

ex.    He was going to apply for this new job, but he realized that he didn’t have enough work experience for the position.

I was going to….but….

I had planned everything for last week.  I was going to go hiking on Monday, do house chores on Tuesday, have dinner with my friends on Wednesday, go fishing on Thursday, do my homework on Friday, wash my car on Saturday and sleep all day on Sunday.

However, none of these things happened because I was informed by my superior that I had to work for another week before taking my vacation.

Please complete the following….

Peter was going to find a job after graduating school….

Mary and Jack were going to get married this summer….
Josh was going to report his friend’s unlawful activity to the boss….

Of course, if you want to add more information to your statement, you can do that using other subordinating conjunctions.

ex.    I was going to go hiking yesterday but it didn’t happen because my mother was sick and I needed to take care of her.

ex.    Peter was going to go to Australia last Monday but all the flights on that day were cancelled because the weather conditions on that day were bad.

Please complete the following, and this time try to support the statement with reasons.

Eric was going to go to New York but….because….
Sam was going to throw a birthday party for his brother but….because….
Daniel was going to be promoted to manager last Tuesday but….because….
Leave your answer


1. A: Is John coming to our party?

B: He ______________________, but he _______________________ a babysitter for his children. (can’t find)

2. A: Are you cooking dinner tonight?

B: I ________________________ until the power ________________ out. (go)

3. A: Is your son going to university?

    B: He ______________________, but he ___________________ to take a year off and travel first. (decide)

4. A: Is the teacher going to stay after class?

B: He _______________________, but he ___________________ out he had a meeting to go to later. (find)

5. A: Are your friends going to sell their house?

B: They ______________________ until the real estate market ___________________. (crash)

6. A: Are you going to buy a new tablet?

B: Well, I ____________________________ buy a new iPad until I __________________ my job. (lose)

7. A: What are Scott and Victoria doing tonight?

B: They ____________________ see a film, but instead they _____________ reservations at a restaurant. (make)

8. A: Did the plumber come to fix the toilet today.

B: He _________________________ come this morning, but his truck _____________________ down. (break)

9. A: Did the children do their homework yet?

B: They ___________________________do it until Uncle Bob __________________ by for a surprise visit. (come)

10. A: Have I paid the credit card bill yet this month? I can’t remember.

B: No, you didn’t. You said you ______________________ wait until you _____________________. (get paid)

Note: I have adapted this grammar lesson from lesson plans I use with my students live online. Classes are 50 minutes long and can be done 1-1 or in small groups. For more information please visit my website

Register for a free demo

Expressing your opinion

Hello friends,

When you are expressing your opinion, there are different lead-in phrases that show how strongly you believe what you are saying.  These phrases will qualify your statement as a personal opinion, strong opinion, general point of view, certainty, or high probability.

Expressing your personal point of view

We use these words and phrases to express a personal point of view:

žžIn my experience, people need to take a good holiday to be able to work at their full potential.
As far as I’m concerned, politicians get paid too much and do too little.
žSpeaking for myself, smokers should no longer be aloud to smoke anywhere outside of their own homes.
žPersonally, I think that the writing skills of young people are becoming poorer because of how they use mobile devices.
žI’d say that in a couple of years no one will be able to buy their own house.

A strong opinion

In my opinion, the taxation is too high and the government needs to do something about it.
In my own view, the government needs to come up with better welfare policies .
I strongly believe that the oil price needs to be reduced.
If you ask me, I think employees should get higher benefits if their efficiency rate is high.

General point of view

We use these words and phrases to express a point of view that is generally thought by people:

It is thought that global warming is a man made problem.

Some people say that working only 30 hrs per week, will make you more productive.

žIt is considered that although technology was supposed to make our lives easier, it is in fact, busier than ever.

žIt is generally accepted that  exercising and having a healthy diet is the best way to avoid the common cold.


According to statistics, unemployment rates have risen over the past 2 years.
Actually, the weather in our area is predictable.
For sure Africa is hotter than Russia.
Surely, cats are smarter than dogs.

High probability

I expect that they’ll show up on my birthday party tomorrow.
I believe it will rain tomorrow.
I doubt that it will be a nice day tomorrow, the news called for rain.
I’m pretty sure tomorrow’s going to be a sunny day.

Supporting your opinion

Once you have expressed your own opinion using a lead in phrase and a statement, you need to support your opinion and explain why  it’s your opinion. Try to use an example in your statement.

I strongly believe that the fuel price needs to be reduced. Nowadays the cost of living is really high because of the petrol price i.e food, clothing and everyday items. It’s so hard for everyday people to make ends meet. If the price of fuel and energy came down it would help everyday people.

It is generally accepted that global warming and climate change are caused by the burning of fossil fuels and other pollutants in the atmosphere. Governments are trying to find ways to stop the rise of the temperature before disaster strikes. Personally I find it hard to believe when people still doubt this and say that global warming is a natural phenomena.

You practice

žWrite out your opinion on the following topics. Remember to support your opinion with examples.
1.Vacations are necessary for your peace of  mind.
2.Is it ok for people to live together before   they get married?
3.Studying English from an early age will give   you an advantage in life.

Send your answers to me, I will correct them and send them back.
Note: I have adapted my 10 minute lessons from lesson plans I use with my students live online. Classes are 50 minutes long and can be done 1-1 or in small groups. For more information please visit my website

Register for a free demo

Idioms with numbers

Hello ESL friends,

Have you ever heard a native English speaker using some interesting slang or idioms to express their feelings in a conversation?
For example, have you ever heard someone says he or she is “dressed to the nines”? What do you think that means?
In today’s 10 minute lesson we will be focusing on some idioms relating to numbers that many native speakers use in their daily conversations.

At the eleventh hour 

An expression used to describe something that happens when it is almost too late, or at the last possible moment.
E.g.  John never has his project ready on time. He always leaves his work until the eleventh hour.

Dressed to the nines 

An expression used when someone is wearing very smart or glamorous clothes.
E.g. Wow! Why are you dressed to the nines? Is there a special occasion or what?

First and foremost

An expression used to state what a person considers to be more important than anything else.
E.g. I would like to give gratitude to my wonderful team first and foremost because if it wasn’t for them, this marketing plan would never have achieved such great results!

Five o’clock shadow  

An expression used to refer to the stubble on a man’s face at the end of the day when he had shaved early in the morning.
E.g. Before your date, you’d better go home and shave because that five o’clock shadow looks unattractive.

Get (or catch) forty winks

An expression used to describe a short sleep or rest, generally during the day.
E.g. He normally tries to get forty winks after lunch everyday.

One in a million

An expression used to describe something rare or unique.

E.g. Receiving a promotion within your first year at a company is really a one in a million chance

Two peas in a pod 

An expression used to say that two people are very similar.
E.g. Gina and Wendy have been two peas in a pod ever since they met in elementary school.


An expression used to refer to the art of gaining and keeping the advantage over other people.
E.g. Despite the fact that his one-upmanship has made him an unpleasant man to be friends with, the success he has achieved in his career is still impressive.

Writing exercises.

If you would like to practice your writing skills, you can write answers to these questions and send your answers to me.

  1. Have you ever one-upped someone?  What did you do, and how did you feel about it?
  2. Could you and any one of your friends be considered two peas in a pod?  Tell the class why you are so close.
  3. When looking for a new job, what should be done first and foremost in your opinion?
  4. Do you find it necessary to catch forty winks before an important event (such as a meeting, party, etc.)?
  5. Have you ever done something “at the eleventh hour”? Describe it to your consultant and fellow students.
Try using the idioms you’ve learned today to talk about an interesting working experience of yours.
Getting my job was a one in a million chance.  I worked very hard to one-up all of the other applicants.  For example, I got letters of recommendation from some people who were very important in the community. I also made sure to get forty winks before I went to the interview so that I could be at my best…

That’s all for now, see you back here real soon.

Note: I have adapted my 10 minute lessons from lesson plans I use with my students live online. Classes are 50 minutes long and can be done 1-1 or in small groups. For more information please visit my website

Register for a free demo

Adjective word order

Adjectives – and the right place to put them. 

Hello everybody, welcome back!

In today’s 10 minute lesson we are going to focus on using adjectives. Adjectives are a great way to make your speech or writing more interesting. We use adjectives to describe nouns, the more adjectives we use, the better description we give to our listener or reader.

Which is the best description of the car above?

A red car

A red sports car

A red american sports car

A classic fast red american sports car

It is very common to use more than one adjective to describe a noun in an English sentence. When you use more than one adjective it’s important you use the right word order.

1. Opinion

¨When you observe an object or a person, you will form an opinion about it.  Others may or may not agree with this opinion. e.g. This is a wonderful book (It is your opinion that the book is wonderful). She is a beautiful women (It is his opinion that the woman is beautiful).
Write down adjectives you can use to express your opinion.

2. Size (Dimension)

This one is pretty easy.  You can state the actual measurements of something or a general size description.  The weight of something is also included in this category. e.g. The mountain is so huge. Kody Bryant is very tall.  These boxes are heavy.

Write down more words to describe size.

3. Age

¨An age adjective tells us how old something is. e.g. The children are very young. Dubai is a modern city. Have you seen my new phone?
How many different adjectives do you know to describe age?

4. Shape

¨This one tells us the shape of something or someone. e.g. Harry potter wears round glasses. A football field is rectangle shape.  I make star shaped cookies with my mother.
What shapes can you see in front of you?

5. Colour

This should be another easy one.  Colour adjectives describe the colour of something.e.g Red and orange and pink and green, purple and orange and blue.

How many colours can you name?

6. Origin

¨Origin adjectives let us know where something is from e.g. The best coffee is Colombian. I love Japanese food. Cuban cigars are great.
Where does the stuff in your house come from?

7. Material

¨Material adjectives tell us what things are made from e.g. I have a wooden table in the kitchen. My smartphone is made from glass and plastic. In the winter I wear a woolen jersey.
Can you name the material used for a computer?

8. Purpose

¨Purpose adjectives tell us specifically what an object is being used for e.g. Make sure you bring your dancing shoes. When i go to the supermarket you have to take my own shopping bag.
What are your favorite things used for?

Your turn  

What order would you put these words in? The noun is umbrella.

British, red, square-shaped, royal blue, big, stylish, new, nylon, rain.

Did you write –  A stylish big new square-shaped red and royal blue British nylon rain umbrella?

Remember you can use all eight adjectives to describe a noun or you could use just a few. The important thing to remember is to always use them in  the RIGHT ORDER!
Describe these photos with as many adjectives as possible.

That’s all for today. Feel free to send in your answers, I will check them and send them back.
See you next time!
Note: I have adapted my 10 minute lessons from lesson plans I use with my students live online. Classes are 50 minutes long and can be done 1-1 or in small groups. For more information please visit my website or if you would like a free demo please register here.

Phrasal Verbs – Jobs and careers


There are 1000’s of phrasal verbs in the English vocabulary. I like to use everyday topics to help you remember them more easily. Remember, practice makes perfect, the more you can use these phrases in everyday conversation, the more you will remember.

In today’s free lesson you will learn useful phrasal verbs to talk about jobs and careers.

The following are dialogues talking informally about a person’s work or career.

1.”Well, to get ahead in a job like mine you have to be prepared to take on a lot of responsibility and work long hours.

Get ahead- be successful in your job and do better than others. Take on -accept a particular job or responsibility.

2. “When the boss first took me on he filled me in on what the job involved, but he didn’t tell me I would have to do so much travelling.”

Take on – began to employ someone (hire). Fill in- Gave the information needed in order to do something.

3. “I’m 60 now, so I think it’s time for me to step down and hand over my company to a younger person.”

Step down -leave your job, especially so that someone else can do it. Hand over – give someone else responsibility or control.

4. ” Well, I stepped down as Chairman in 1998, and Mary Wilmot took over. As you all know, she has carried out some important reforms in the company and has been very successful.”

Step down – left an important job or official position so that someone else can do it instead. Took over – started doing a job or being responsible for something that someone else was in charge of. Carry out – done or completed something, especially something important.

5. Orson “It’s amazing how much we can get done when we all pull together, isn’t it?”, Phina “Yes, although sometimes it’s also good if people just leave you to it“.

Pull together – work as a group in order to achieve something. Leave to  – (informal) go away from someone so that they do something by themselves or so they can continue what they are doing.

Complete this text, using verbs or phrases from the lesson. You might need to change the verb tenses!

Karin has been _______ on more and more responsibility at work.
She was only taken _____ two years ago, but she has already managed
to carry ____ a very successful reorganisation of office procedures.
Her boss just _________ her to it and Karin then filled him _______
when she had arranged everything. She has always been very good at
getting people to ______ together and motivating them. She’s
someone who will really ______ ahead and make a successful career.
In fact, I’m sure that when the boss eventually _____ down, he’ll ______
over the running of the company to her. He can be sure it will be in
safe hands!
Get, On, Leave,
Take, In, Pull,
Hand, Step, Out.

Send your answers here

More dialogues with phrasal verbs.

Rick “Ryan, do you think you could fix up a quick meeting for me?”
Ryan “Yes, I’ll do that. When were you thinking of?”
Rick “Well, let’s pencil it in for Friday morning and see whether everyone else is free then.”

Fix up -provide or arrange something for someone. Pencil it in -arrange for something to happen on a particular date, knowing the arrangement might be changed later

Connie “Why are you back home already? Did you knock off early today?”
Paul “I wish I could say that. The truth is I’ve just been laid off.”
Connie “I am sorry to hear that.”

Knock off – (informal) stop working, usually at the end of a day (Amer. = take off). Laid off – lost your job because there is no work for you to do.

Answer these questions about your own working life, using full sentences.

1.What kind of tasks do you have to carry out each day?
2.At what time do you knock off each day?
3.Do you know anyone who has ever been laid off?
4.What qualities do you think you need to get ahead in the job that you do?
5.What did you do to get taken on for the job that you now have?


•get ahead•take on sth•take sb on•fill sb in•take over•carry out•step down•hand over (tosb)•fix sth up•pencil sb / sthin,knock off•lay off sb•follow up•pull together•leave sb to.

Now try to use the phrasal verbs you learned today in your everyday English.

The end

Note: I have adapted this  lesson from lesson plans I use with my students live online. Classes are 50 minutes long and can be done 1-1 or in small groups. For more information please visit my website

Register for a free demo