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  • Hello. I'm Gill at,

  • and today's lesson, we're looking at how to talk about days and times.

  • And we're going to start by looking at prepositions, because sometimes

  • it's a little bit confusing which preposition to use for particular references to the day

  • or the time. Okay?

  • So, there are two main prepositions. There's "at" and there's "in", and "in the" usually

  • or always, probably. So, with "at", we can have the... A specific time on the clock:

  • "At 2pm" or "At 2:00", "At 2:30", "At midnight", all the times on the clock or on your watch

  • is "at". And then when you're referring to mealtimes: "At breakfast time", "At lunchtime",

  • "At teatime". We like teatime, here in the UK. It's very traditional. Around 4:00, nice

  • cup of tea. Lovely. "At teatime", "At dinnertime", and "At night". Okay? So, "At night". But

  • when it comes to other words that are linked with morning, afternoon, evening, night - we

  • use a different preposition. So, it's just "night" that has "at" with it there, and then

  • the mealtime, and the specific times on your watch.

  • Okay, so let's have a look at the "in" preposition, and see what goes with "in". So, you can say:

  • "In the morning", "In the afternoon", "In the daytime", meaning anytime during the day.

  • "In the daytime", "In the middle of the day", so that's roughly maybe midday, 12:00 or 1:00,

  • 2:00, that sort of time. "In the middle of the day". "In the evening". You can also say:

  • "In the night", which has the sort of meaning: "During the night".

  • We've got: "At night" there, but you can say: "In the night" meaning:

  • "Oh, I woke up in the night because I'd had a bad dream."

  • So: "I woke up during the night because I had a bad dream." So you can use

  • it with "night" with both prepositions. Okay? And then: "In the middle of the night". You

  • can also say: "I woke up in the middle of the night." Okay, so I hope that helps to

  • make clear which preposition to use. And now we're going to move on and look at some

  • past, present, and future words. Okay.

  • Okay, so moving on to look at some words about the past, the present, and the future. Okay?

  • Past, present, future. We have, for example: "yesterday". Yesterday was Tuesday.

  • "Today". Today is Wednesday. "Tomorrow", tomorrow is Thursday. Okay? Yesterday, today, tomorrow.

  • Then, when you're talking about different parts of today-okay?-we use "this", so you

  • say: "This morning". That is whether it is morning at the moment:

  • "This morning we are going to do something" or you can say: "This morning we had our breakfast at 9:00." So,

  • "this morning" you can use in the present or the past. "This morning", "this afternoon".

  • And again, oh, you could say: "This afternoon we will", so that's like future,

  • or: "This afternoon we are doing something", in the present.

  • So you can use these past, present, future, but it's all with:

  • "This morning", "This afternoon", "This evening", but it then

  • changes. We don't say: "This night", we say: "Tonight", all one word, "Tonight". Okay?

  • So that's just one little exception: "Tonight". Okay.

  • And then looking at something similar for yesterday, we can say: "Yesterday morning",

  • "Yesterday afternoon we went to see a film", "Yesterday evening we went to see some friends",

  • but again, we don't say: "Yesterday night", we say: "Last night". Okay, so another little

  • exception. "Tonight", "Last night" are different. Okay. Right.

  • And then moving on to look at the future: "Tomorrow morning", "Tomorrow afternoon",

  • "Tomorrow evening". There is a good program on television tomorrow evening. And this time

  • it's the same: "Tomorrow night". So, it doesn't change. "Tonight", "Last night", "Tomorrow night".

  • And then moving on to look either further back in the past, or other times in the present,

  • or further into the future. With the day of the week, you can say: "Last Monday", which

  • was Monday of last week; you could say: "This Monday", Monday of this week; or "Next Monday"

  • in the future, "Monday of next week". Okay? And similarly, you can use these in combination.

  • "Last week", "This week", "Next week", "Last month", "This month", "Next month",

  • "Last year", "This year", and "Next year". So they're all very straightforward. Okay?

  • Right. And then to finish with just two little interesting points. First of all, this little

  • word: "ago", "ago". "A week ago", that means this time last week.

  • "A week ago, I was on holiday."

  • Okay? Or: "A week ago, I was in my office."

  • Or: "A week ago, I was travelling on a train."

  • It's what you were doing this time last week; seven days ago.

  • So: "A week ago", you could use it with "A month ago", "A year ago". You can make it less, you can

  • say: "A minute ago", "An hour ago", "A day ago", okay? So it's always in the past. And

  • even longer time: "5 years ago", "10 years ago". So it's a useful little word.

  • And then finally, a lot of people get confused by this strange word: "a fortnight". They

  • might think: "Well, four... Four nights." No, it's not four nights. It actually... It

  • was a very old expression, meaning 14 nights. Okay? And if you think 14 nights, well, okay,

  • that's two weeks. So, 14 days, but 14 nights. Okay? So, it just means... "A fortnight" means

  • two weeks. You might find it in books like Jane Austen, but we still use it today as

  • well to say: "A fortnight", "A fortnight ago, I was on holiday",

  • or "We are going on holiday for a fortnight". So, we use it a lot in the UK.

  • Right, so I hope that was all useful for you.

  • If you'd like to test your knowledge on this topic,

  • please go to the website: and do the quiz.

  • And if you've enjoyed my lesson, perhaps you'd like to subscribe to my YouTube channel.

  • And that's it for today.

  • Hope to see you very soon.

  • Okay. Bye for now.

Hello. I'm Gill at,

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A1 UK week afternoon morning fortnight monday preposition

Learn English: Using AT, IN THE, AGO, and more words to talk about time

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    grant posted on 2016/06/09
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