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Last updated at 12:00 GMT, Tuesday, 17 December 2013



Finn and Feifei are visiting China. Finn is impressed by the skyscrapers in Shanghai. He describes them as 'ginormous'. But what does that mean?

Shanghai, China

These buildings in Shanghai are ginormous!

The script for this programme

(Sounds of a busy Chinese city)

Finn: Hi, I'm Finn, and today in The English We Speak we're in Feifei's home country - China.

Feifei: Welcome, welcome... what do you think, Finn?

Finn: Well, Feifei, there are so many... skyscrapers.

Feifei: Lots of tall buildings. Impressive, aren't they?

Finn: Absolutely. Look at that one. It's gigantic!

Feifei: Oh the Jin Mao Tower, yes it's pretty gigantic.

Finn: And this one is really... enormous!

Feifei: Yes, it is. The Oriental Pearl Tower is enormous.

Finn: And this one is absolutely... ginormous!

Feifei: Gi... what? Finn, you just made that word up.

Finn: No, seriously, ginormous is a word! It's very informal, and means, well gigantic and enormous. Kind of a combination of both.

Feifei: Gigantic, enormous - ginormous. And you're right - the World Financial Centre is ginormous!

Finn: Can we go to the top of the tower?

Feifei: Sure. While we take the lift up, listen to these examples.

  • Look at that old mobile phone from the 80s - it's ginormous!
  • Those carrots are ginormous!

(Lift announcement: top floor)

Feifei: Here we are. Wow, what a view!

Finn: It's incredible, isn't it? Do you know how high up we are?

Feifei: Hmmm... I don't know. Let me guesstimate.

Finn: Guesstimate?

Feifei: Oh, you don't know that word - it's a combination of 'guess' and 'estimate'.

Finn: Aha - I see! So how tall do you think this ginormous tower is?

Feifei: About 500 metres?

Finn: Pretty tall! We're high above all the 'smog'.

Feifei: You mean a combination of smoke and...?

Finn: Fog, yes. Actually Feifei, I'm really scared of heights. Shall we go back down?

Feifei: Oh, you really are a ginormous coward Finn!

Finn: Hey, come on, Feifei! Right, let's remind everyone to log on to for more phrases! Bye.

Feifei: Bye!

(Lift announcement: lift going down)


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