LISENTING - Inglish First


Yes/no and Wh-questions

Welcome to our first 6 Minute Grammar programme. We hope you like it. Don’t forget that you can subscribe to the podcast version.

Session Grammar
In English, there are two basic types of question.

1. Yes/no questions often begin with the verb to be, but can also begin with other auxiliary verbs, such as do.

We ask these when we want a yes or no answer.

2. Wh-questions start with a question word, such as who, what, where, when, why or how.

We ask this type of question when we want different kinds of information. These questions cannot be answered with a yes or no.

Ana: Hi, I’m Ana. Welcome to What to Say!

Do you know what to say when you want to check your understanding? Listen out for useful language for checking your understanding. Then, we’ll practise saying the new phrases – after this.

Bob: This isn’t right. Hey! Excuse me, Paul, could you pass me the hammer?

Paul: Sorry, Bob, my ears are blocked. I can’t hear you very well. Could you say that again, please?

Bob: The hammer. Please could you pass it to me?

Paul: The spanner?

Bob: No. The hammer! 

Paul: Sorry, Bob, I don’t understand. This is the spanner! 

Bob: No, Paul, I need the hammer. It’s in the toolbox, on the left, under the scissors.

Paul: Sorry, Bob. Could you repeat that more slowly, please? 

Bob: The hammer … in the toolbox … on the left … under the scissors.

Paul: On the left … under the scissors … Oh! Do you mean the hammer? Is this it?

Bob: Yes, that’s right! 

Paul: Ah! Why didn’t you say so?

Bob: I did! 

Ana: Hello again! Oh dear. I think Paul needs to go home and sleep. So, did you notice the useful phrases used for checking your understanding? Listen to me and then repeat.

I’m sorry?

I can’t hear you very well.

Could you say that again, please?

I don’t understand.

Can you repeat that more slowly, please?

Do you mean the hammer?

Is this it?

Yes, that’s right! 

Ana: Try and use some of these phrases the next time you want to check your understanding in English. Bye for now! 


Did you find the video useful?

A request from your boss

Listen to some requests from a manager to practise and improve your listening skills.

Do the preparation task first. Then listen to the audio and do the exercises.

Listening A1: A request from your boss – preparation
Put the sentences in the correct group.

Susanne: Hi, Mario. Can you help me prepare some things for the next month?

Mario: OK, sure. What can I help you with?

Susanne: I need to visit the customer in Germany. It’s important.

Mario: What can I do to help?

Susanne: Can you send an email to the customer? Ask them when I can visit them next week. Please do this first. It’s a priority and very urgent.

Mario: Right. I’ll do it today.

Susanne: Thanks. This next task is also important. Can you invite everyone to the next team meeting?

Mario: Yes, I will.

Susanne: But first you need to book a meeting room. After that, please send everyone an email about it.

Mario: Yes, of course.

Susanne: And finally, can you write a short report about our new project? I have to give a presentation to our managers next month. Please do it when you have time – sometime in the next two or three weeks. It’s not too urgent.

Mario: Sure, no problem. I can do it this week.

Susanne: There’s no hurry. Take your time.

Listening A1: A request from your boss – 2
Put the tasks in order of priority.


Do you sometimes help other people with their work? What do you do for them?

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