Unit 10: Sunny's job hunt
Gerunds and infinitives
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- 1 Nice to meet you!
- 2 What to wear
- 3 Like this, like that
- 4 The daily grind
- 5 Christmas every day
- 6 Great achievers
- 7 The Titanic
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- 10 Sunny's job hunt
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- 27 Job hunting success... and failure
- 28 Speeding into the future
- 29 Lost arts
- 30 Tales of survival
In the first of 5 sessions, we have a first look at verb patterns, and pick up some work vocabulary as we meet a Chinese video blogger called Sunny who’s looking for a job.
What's the connection between a teacher, a driver or, like Neil and Sophie, a presenter? Well, these words all end in the letters -er. This is a common job suffix, but it's not the only one. In the programme you'll learn others like -ist, -ian and -or.
Listen to the audio
..and welcome to 6 Minute Vocabulary. My name is Neil, and I’m one of the presenters today.
And I’m Sophie, and I’m the other presenter. Welcome to the show!
Did you hear that word - presenter? Today we’re going to be talking about jobs, and the different kinds of English words for different jobs. Like presenter, for example.
We’ll look at some of the different ways that words for jobs can end, like the ‘er’ at the end of presenter. These are called suffixes.
As usual, we’ll be giving you a quiz to see how much you can remember…
And we’ll also bring you a top tip to help you learn vocabulary.
But first, let’s listen to Anna. She’s going to tell us about the different jobs she’s had in her life so far.
While you listen, think about this question: what is Anna’s job now?
When I was a little girl, I always wanted to be a teacher. So I spent years training as a teacher, and then I got a job in a school… and I hated it! After a few months I quit. I worked for a while as a librarian, but I didn’t really like that either. Finally I started writing for a small website. Now I work as a journalist, writing for newspapers and magazines.
So, that was Anna, talking about all the jobs she’s done. And we asked: what’s Anna’s job now?
Anna is a journalist now. She writes for newspapers and magazines.
Well done if you got that right. And another question: Did you catch what Anna’s first job was?
She was a teacher. Let’s listen again…
INSERT 1 CLIP 1
When I was a little girl, I always wanted to be a teacher. So I spent years training as a teacher...
Now, a lot of English words for jobs end with the sound –er, like presenter or teacher.
Yes, and there are two ways to spell the suffix –er in job names. Sometimes this is spelled e-r, in words like presenter or teacher. Or sometimes it’s spelled o-r: for example, actor or translator.
So, a teacher teaches students, an actor acts in a film, a translator translates from one language to another, a train driver drives a train. You’re an actor aren’t you Sophie?
Yes, I am, Neil. But because I’m female you can also say I’m an actress. So, there are lots of jobs that end with that e-r suffix. But now let’s look at a different suffix. Can you remember what Anna’s next job was, after she quit teaching? Let’s listen and check.
INSERT 1 CLIP 2
After a few months I quit. I worked for a while as a librarian, but I didn’t really like that either.
Next, Anna worked as a librarian – that’s someone who works in a library.
Another suffix which we often find at the end of a word for a job is –ian, spelled i-a-n. Sometimes it’s pronounced ‘shun’. For example, if you’ve got a problem with your eyes, you might need to go to an optician.
And someone who works in politics is a politician. Ever thought of being a politician, Sophie?
I can’t say I have, Neil. OK, now let’s talk about one more suffix. Do you remember what Anna does now? She’s a journalist.
There are also quite a lot of words for jobs in English which end in –ist, spelled i-s-t.
The person who greets you in an office or a hotel is a receptionist…
And a person who looks after your teeth is a dentist.
You’re listening to BBC Learning English.
And we’re talking about jobs suffixes.
Ok. Now it’s quiz time! We’ve got three questions for you. First, if someone translates from one language to another, are they a) a translatist b) a translator or c) a translatician?
And the answer is, b) a translator. Well done if you got that right. Second question: which job ends with the letters –o-r? Is it a) actor; b) teacher or c) presenter?
And the answer is actor. Teacher and presenter end with –e-r. Well done if you got both of those questions right. It’s almost time for the end of the show. But before we go, there’s just time for a top tip for learning vocabulary.
When you record a new word, don’t just write the word and the translation – try drawing a picture in your notebook too!
Yes. Drawing a picture can help you remember the word better.
There’s more about this at bbclearningenglish.com. Join us again soon for more 6 Minute Vocabulary.
End of Session 1
Well done - that's the end of the first session in this unit. We hope you’ve enjoyed meeting Sunny and learning about job suffixes.
In Session 2, we're going to learn more about how to use gerunds and infinitives after verbs.
Job names ending in –er:
presenter, teacher, train driver
Job names ending in –or:
actor (some people say actress for female actors), translator
Job names ending in –ian:
librarian, politician, optician
Job names ending in –ist:
journalist, receptionist, dentist