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  • Apr 19, 2014
  • Updated: 10:00am

Thirsty work

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 06 June, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 06 June, 2012, 12:00am

When someone tells you he got rich through hard work, ask him 'whose?' - Don Marquis, American writer (1878 - 1937)

Work it out

The verb 'to work' has different meanings when it is used with the prepositions at/out/off/up. What do these phrases mean?

1 to work at (something)

a. to try hard to achieve something

b. to stop doing something you've been doing for awhile

2 to work (something) out

a. to refuse to tell somebody a secret

b. to find the solution to something by thinking about it carefully

3 to work (something) off

a. to get rid of something by doing something energetic

b. to stop speaking to someone you have known a long time

4 to work (somebody) up

a. to praise someone for something they have done

b. to make someone feel very angry or upset

5 to work (somebody) out

a. to give someone the benefit of the doubt

b. to understand the reasons behind someone's behaviour

Which preposition?

Choose the correct preposition to complete these sentences.

1 You need to work more (off / at) your maths and history next term.

2 There will be a full inquiry to work (at / out) what caused the bus crash.

3 I need to work (out / off) a few pounds after eating all those mooncakes during the Mid-Autumn Festival.

4 Try not to work yourself (up / out) about your driving test.

5 You should do something you enjoy and work (up / off) all that anger.

6 Why are you behaving like this? I can't work you (off / out) at all.

You need a work permit

What do these nouns mean?

1 a work permit

a. written permission from the authorities to be allowed to work

b. the leave you receive from your company when you are sick

2 a work surface

a. a flat area on which you do some sort of manual work

b. the period of time you work during a day

3 thirsty work

a. difficult manual labour that makes you want to drink lots of liquid

b. to undertake an exciting task

4 a work ethic

a. a belief that hard work pays off

b. a fear of working with other people

5 work experience

a. the first job you ever have

b. a period of time that someone, especially a young person or student, spends working somewhere to get experience of a particular type of job

Work experience

Choose a noun from the above exercise to complete these sentences

1 Next month, I'll be getting a fortnight's .......... at a bank in Central.

2 I always make a mess on the kitchen ............ whenever I bake a cake.

3 Gardening is ......... in this hot weather, but I enjoy it.

4 We should promote him. He's got an excellent ...........

5 You'll need a ............. to get a temporary job while you're in London.

Working my fingers to the bone

Match up each useful verb phrase to its meaning (there are more answers than you need)

1 to work your fingers to the bone

2 to work like a dog

3 to do all the donkey work

4 to do somebody's dirty work

5 to make short work of something

a. to do the hard and boring part of a particular job

b. to refuse to do something your parents ask you to do

c. to work extremely hard for a very long time

d. to do the unpleasant tasks that someone else does not like doing

e. to do something very quickly and easily

f. to work very hard

Answers:

Work it out: 1. a, 2. b, 3. a, 4. b, 5. b

Which preposition? 1. at, 2. out, 3. off, 4. up, 5. off, 6. out

You need a work permit: 1. a, 2. a, 3. a, 4. a, 5. b

Work experience: 1. work experience, 2. work surface, 3. thirsty work, 4. work ethic, 5. work permit

Working my fingers to the bone: 1. c, 2. f, 3. a, 4. d, 5. e

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