O Sounds Supplement: Use of Small Words

Perfect Your Pronunciation and Stress with 750 Business Words
Rule 1: Use “a” when a singular noun is mentioned for the first time.
Rule 2: Use “a” when you could say “one” or to distinguish one from a group.
Rule 3: Use “the” for a singular noun that has already been mentioned or that is known due to regular use or the context. 
Examples: I saw a bird. The bird was flying in the sky.
At the office, I dropped my phone on the floor. the office= known through regular use, the floor = all offices have floors
Rule 4: Use “the” with plural nouns.
Rule 5: Use “a” with quantity phrases like a huge amount of work or a bit of sugar.

Memorize set phrases. Some prepositions add a particular meaning to a word, and these have to be memorized.

Use “at” to indicate presence at a location when inside/outside doesn’t matter or both apply.
Use “of” to show relationship or possession.
Use “in” when referring to a field of study or work.
Use “to” when connecting two verbs.
Business Conference

1. Next week, there will be a motivational business conference
 at the Holiday Inn.
2. The main speaker will be one of the co-founders of a major technology company.
3. Even though he has a great voice, he keeps a low profile
4. The conference was organized by the city to promote confidence in business.
5. It will focus on the pro’s and con’s of online business models.
6. It will cover new techniques in user-friendly browsing and downloading.
7. It will also cover power issues and choices in outsourcing.
8. Several politicians may also speak about local and federal policies.
9. One of the goals is to bolster the city’s interaction with local business.
10. It is well-organized–the schedule provides a lot of time for social networking.
11. If you want to go, we need to respond to the invitation today.
12. We can also start posting on the blog to meet people beforehand.

Quiz on Articles

Choose which rule applies to each phrase. Answers are at the bottom of the page.

1. a motivational business conference
2. the main speaker
3. the co-founders
4. a major technology company
5. a great voice
6. a low profile
7. the conference
8. the city
9. the pro’s and con’s
10. one of the goals
11. the schedule
12. a lot of time
13. the invitation
14. the blog

Practice with Prepositions: Answer the Questions

1. Think of an event or a social you attended (in person or online). Who was it organized by?
2. Do you ever place your confidence in politicians? Name one person or belief that you have confidence in.
3. What will you focus on today?
4. Do you prefer to interact with people who are similar to you, different from you, or both?
5. Do you have enough time for your hobbies these days? Note: time for
 could be replaced with time to do here.
6. Do you usually respond to social media posts?
7. When was the last time you posted a comment on a blog or video?
8. Have you stayed at a hotel or campsite since the pandemic began?
9. What are the pro’s and con’s of your work
10. What is an interesting development in the field of science?
11. What is one thing you want to do today? And what is one thing you need to do

Answers to articles quiz
1. Rule 1, 2. Rule 3, 3. Rule 4, 4. rule 2, 5. Rule 1, 6. Rule 1, 7. Rule 3, 8. Rule 3, 9. Rule 4, 10. Rule 4, 11. Rule 3, 12. Rule 5, 13. Rule 3, 14. Rule 3
750 Business WordsO Sounds Main Page
* http://www.speakmethod.com is a part of I.E. Tutoring, Seattle, WA, which holds the copyright to all materials. Subscribers may print images and pages for individual use, but not for commercial use or distribution. *

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