Polite Requests

May 26, 2015

Do you ever get annoyed with English people continually saying please, thank you or sorry? It’s important to remember that English is a very polite language which uses a lot of indirect structures. For example, you may have noticed the unusual way that English people make requests. This week, my students have been learning and practising using Polite Requests:

When making a request we often incorporate a modal verb such as can or could (could might be considered a little more formal). REMEMBER: although the sentence is structured like a question, the speaker is not looking for an answer:

  • Can I have the bill, please?”
  • Could you pass me the water, please?”

When you are seeking someone’s attention, remember to use some polite language to begin the conversation:

  • Excuse me, could I ask you…”
  • Sorry to interrupt, but…”

Sometimes you may be seeking permission for something (REMEMBER: “do you mind if…” has a similar meaning to “would it be a problem if…” and thus the response has to reflect this):

  • Do you mind if I leave a bit early today?”
  • Is it alright if I sit here?”

Do you use these structures regularly when you speak English? Are any of them similar to your own language?



Category: Study tips

Add Pingback

Please add a comment

You must be logged in to leave a reply. Login »

 ICE blogger ally_pic.jpg

 Ally

 

 

 

 

Category List


Tag List

london events (1)
Relaxing London (4)
english grammar tips (1)
the shard (1)
grammar tips (1)
Journalism Course London (1)
narrative voice (2)
Learn English (15)
Tweed (1)
Francais (2)
Recording vocabulary (3)
the people's tower (1)
IELTS (2)
Reading in English (1)
reading tips (1)
Students (2)
Improve your vocabulary (5)
english course london (12)
Journalism evening course London (1)
past modal verbs (1)
Insider info London (14)
ILEC (1)
things to do london (1)
Polite questions (1)
English tips (4)
New vocabulary (4)
Field day (1)
New blog (1)
Cool as a cucumber (1)
Winter in London (6)
Free english lessons (10)
Business English (1)
Listening in English (2)
London Summer (7)
study english onlline (1)
ICE (5)
Things to do in London (6)
Peaceful London (2)
english school london (12)
London Marathon (1)
Sport Journalism Course (1)
English grammar (4)
Somewhere to go London (3)
Idiom (3)
English (1)
saga (1)
Cambridge Exam Preparation (1)
writing a mini saga (1)
Vocabulary (11)
music festival London (1)
grammar (1)
english as a foreign language (3)
Hello from Ally (1)
pronuciation (3)
Events in London (1)
Islington Centre for English (6)
CAE (3)
Learn english online (12)
Victoria park (1)
Basic English mistakes (1)
Fun (1)
spelling (1)
Cycling (1)
London (5)
study english (1)
Somewhere to visit London (1)
Shopping in London (4)
english study tips (1)
Halloween (2)
future tenses english (1)
Journalism Masterclass (1)
FCE (4)
London markets (4)
english school (2)
Beautiful London (8)
free english grammar (2)
making predictions (1)
Journalist Course London (1)
Somewhere to visit (9)
student study tips (1)
english review (1)
Attractions in London (1)
World Naked Bike Ride (1)
New language (7)
writing a mini-saga (1)
silent disco (1)
english grammar help (1)
study tips (9)
defining relative clauses (1)
Barney Ronay (1)
english courses london (1)
Christmas in London (3)
english school online (1)
Where to visit London (3)
exams (1)
Learning tips (10)
Historic moment (1)
Covent Garden (1)
Vocabulary notebook (8)
past modals (1)
efl (4)
Tourist tips (5)
Social programme (1)
mini-saga (1)
Adjective (2)
english grammar online (1)
music festivals uk (1)
future tenses efl (1)
English vocabulary (3)
Places to see in London (4)
Things to see in London (4)
English food (3)
Journalism classes London (1)

Tag Cloud

ICEeflthings to do londonJournalism MasterclassEnglish tipsIslington Centre for Englishthe shardPeaceful LondonLearning tipsspellingenglish reviewwriting a mini-sagaLondonEvents in Londonenglish courses londonFrancaisnarrative voicefree english grammargrammarShopping in LondonPlaces to see in Londonstudy english onllinesagaIdiomenglish course londonNew languageVocabularyLondon Summerenglish grammar helpNew vocabularyJournalism Course Londonwriting a mini sagaStudentsdefining relative clausesthe people's towerVocabulary notebookWorld Naked Bike Ridemini-sagaVictoria parkmaking predictionsHalloweenWhere to visit LondonField dayHello from AllyRecording vocabularyFCETourist tipsenglish study tipslondon eventsReading in EnglishFree english lessonsCambridge Exam Preparationenglish grammar tipsexamsThings to see in LondonCool as a cucumberSomewhere to visitWinter in LondonBusiness Englishpast modalsChristmas in LondonBasic English mistakesNew blogLearn Englishenglish as a foreign languageRelaxing Londonenglish school onlineenglish school londonSomewhere to go Londonstudy tipsSomewhere to visit Londonpast modal verbsJournalism classes LondonFunenglish grammar onlinefuture tenses eflLearn english onlineEnglish foodreading tipsCAEInsider info LondonHistoric momentListening in EnglishLondon marketsAttractions in LondonImprove your vocabularyTweedenglish schoolstudy englishIELTSCyclingJournalism evening course LondonSocial programmePolite questionsBarney Ronaymusic festivals ukCovent GardenEnglish grammarThings to do in LondonSport Journalism CourseILECgrammar tipsLondon Marathonpronuciationfuture tenses englishEnglish vocabularyBeautiful Londonmusic festival LondonAdjectivesilent discostudent study tipsEnglishJournalist Course London


Archive