IELTS Idiom Practice #Set1

Idioms when used in the speaking section showcase that you have a better understanding of English language. Using them therefore, increases your band. Let us learn idioms which when used in answering speaking section can help you score better.

IELTS Idiom Practice

A Penny for your thoughts
Meaning – ask someone who is quiet what they are thinking about. This is usually done when the other person is waiting for an answer or suggestion or in general opinion of the other person on a matter. This idiom is used in form of request rather than demand.
Note : One can use this in group discussions as well.
Sentence – “There came a lull in the conversation, and Brandon said, ‘Penny for your thoughts?’” (The Tahlequah Daily Press)
Against the clock
Meaning – do something as fast as possible usually before time
Sentence – With the deadline for project being a day away, she was working against the clock.

Lend an ear

Meaning – listen carefully and in a friendly way to someone.
Sentence – Avinash is a friend one needs in times of trouble, he always lends an ear for as long one needs
hit the hay
Meaning – go to bed
Sentence: Our house had a rule where everyone must hit the hay by 11 pm.
get a head start
Sentence – Start before all others.
Meaning – Her proactive nature helped her get a head start to her competitors.
to be in arms about something
Meaning – upset or angry about something Sentence : She has been up in arms about the late promotions she got.
on cloud nine
Meaning – very happy; deliriously happy
Sentence – When she got to know that her IELTS results was more than her expected 7, she was on cloud 9.
in the nick of time
Meaning – not too late but very close.
Sentence – I reached office just in the nick of time.
hard feelings
Meaning – feelings of resentment; emotion of being upset or offended.
Sentence: There are no hard feelings but considering everything I am left with no other option but to let you go.
be sick to death something/doing something
Meaning: to be angry or bored because of something unpleasant happening for a long time
Sentence: Last Sunday I was sick to death copying all the modules working around changes only ants could see.
rain or shine

Meaning – something will happen regardless of weather or other difficulties.

Sentence – Come rain or shine, she does not stops working towards her goals.

Down to Earth
Meaning – practical and realistic Sentence: The project needed people who were down to Earth and could deliver upon what is promised.
On the Ball
Meaning: Active and aware of things Sentence: Although the Indian cricket team has been criticized, it has always proved that it stands on the ball.
full of beans
Meaning: a person who is lively, active and healthy. Sentence: Everyone enjoys the company of my father probably because he is full of beans.
Explore all avenues
Meaning: Investigate every possible means to find a solution to a given problem or to achieve desired outcome. Sentence: He explored all his avenues before he started on working on his own company.
next to nothing
Meaning: to cost very little Sentence: I brought this kajal at amazon during their prime time sale for next to nothing.
fresh or clean out of something
Meaning: have sold up or used up the last of something
Sentence: We would need to buy new groceries. It seems we are fresh out of them.
at all cost
Meaning: do everything to achieve or get something. Sentence: Having seen the side of broken dreams, I will make sure I achieve all my dreams at all cost.
Put yourself in somebody’s shoes
Meaning – positioning yourself in someone’s else position to understand their emotions or decisions. Sentence – If only you could put yourself in my shoes, you would understand why I made the decision.

Stay tuned for IELTS idiom practice !


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