Arsenio’s ESL Podcast: Season 1 – First Conversation: Thai & French Accents!

This was a podcast I did at the very beginning stages of my podcast.  I’m finally getting around to developing podcast art and making shownotes for this particular podcast, so I hope you guys enjoy this one!

International Guest Speakers on French and Thai accents

Things we discussed:

  • Introduction.
  • Learning German and Japanese.
  • Gigi’s experience in India.
  • Indian cuisine.
  • French & Thai cuisine.
  • General diet of Thai people.
  • French diet.
  • Famous French cuisine.
  • French red wine and other alcoholic beverages.
  • The French host’s favorite wine and champagne as well as prices.
  • Talking about Thai wine, champagne and other alcoholic beverages with its prices.
  • Recommendation of two places in Thailand for visitors to visit.
  • Recommendation of two places in France for visitors to visit.
  • Other alternatives and places in Thailand for visitors to visit.
  • Traveling plans and Songkran.


Thank you for listening!


Thank you so much for listening to this podcast. Please write down some feedback and comments. Please share this podcast to your social media.





Arsenio’s ESL Podcast: Special – IELTS – Part 2 – Giving a Talk

Welcome back to another IELTS coaching!  Today is Episode 002, and I’ll be talking about giving a talk.

So, if you guys don’t already know, Part 2 is about the examiner asking you to talk about a specific topic.  The examiner will give you a booklet showing you the question and the ideas you need to talk about.

Let’s look at a task that I have done recently.

Describe a time that you helped someone.

You should say:

who you helped and why?

How you helped this person

what the result was

and explain how you felt about helping this person.

Taking Proper Notes

This is the most important part and could be very time-consuming and ill-prepared if the student isn’t sure about how to take notes.

Before you talk, you will be given a paper to make notes on.  This is how I want you to fill in the notes.

  • Who you helped: James
  • How: Family emergency
  • How you helped: Rushed to his place
  • Result: Rushed to hospital — cared for
  • Explanation: Amazed and rewarded

Here are some rough notes.  Again, you don’t want to write full sentences, pick out key words whereas if you look at them, you’ll be able to speak about it for 20-30 seconds in detail.  If you put articles, adjectives, verbs, etc….that could be fine, but key words will help guide you. Also, using transitions to separate thoughts will help significantly.

If you run out of time

If you run out of ideas after one minute, go to your notes again, look at the question again (did you use all details), refer back to an earlier point to add more, and keep talking while you think.

Phrases to help you keep talking

  1. Like I said earlier…..(reference)
  2. I don’t think I mentioned……(reference)
  3. At the beginning, I….
  4. One thing I forgot to mention was…….

Arsenio’s ESL – IELTS Coaching 002


YouTube – Coming Soon

Arsenio’s ESL Podcast: Season 3 – Episode 3 – Discussion Questions/Critical Thinking

As promised, I wanted to implement some more developing thinking for my ESL learners around the globe (and for my native English speakers who aren’t asked these questions at school).

Nourishment is the topic today.  It means the things that we need to stay alive, healthy and grow strong.

What are some of the best ways to find physical and mental nourishment?

Freewriting – 15 minutes

In the beginning of my entrepreneurial journey, I started meditating before going to work everyday.  It was a money affirmation by Bob Proctor.  I would do it in stillness, laying down with the blinds open.  This would really relax me, my spirit, and all the outside noise that would’ve been going on at the time.  So, this is called meditation/visualization.

Physical nourishment involves me doing strength, core, power, and conditioning training every morning.  After I’m done working out, I feel that I can conquer anything.  David Goggins says, “do the things that suck,” but that “suck” can become a passion.

What are some brain foods that you eat? Do you eat blueberries? Chocolate? Fish? Pasta?

What are some of the differences you feel when you consume brain food compared to when you don’t?

If I eat anything high in sodium, fat, carbs, or fast-food in general (primarily in the afternoon), I feel very lethargic, tired and fatigue.  I often get drowsy, too.  However, if I eat good fat like avocado, blueberries, nuts, or things high in B vitamins, I’m often awake.

What do you feed yourself emotionally? How does it make you feel?


Interviewee #18 – Soheir Ghanem on All Things E-Commerce

Soheir is the host of the eCommerce QueenBOSS podcast, a public speaker and a Fashion eCommerce entrepreneur. 

Through her podcast and programs, she helps creative entrepreneurs to build an eCommerce business that sparks passion, and creates wealth in their lives, so they can share their gifts with the world, even if they’re just starting out or have no marketing knowledge.

She specializes in Consumer Psychology and Experience Marketing.  Here are the show notes, links, and other things.


Get in touch with Soheir Ghanam from France

– All the things about eCommerce.



Things we discussed:

  • Introduction of Soheir and how Soheir started.
  • What are the types of e-commerce?
  • E-commerce has different business models.
  • Customers will be your unique selling points.
  • Team building and brand building.
  • Customers and employees retainment.
  • What is the shortcut for a beginner who wants to sell on their website?
  • Consider your preferences and your goals.
  • The necessary tools that you need based on your preferences.
  • WordPress and plugins.
  • The challenges of learning curve for non – techies and the ROI on learning curve.
  • Social learning on platforms such as Facebook and Instagram. Their differences are huge.
  • What is Soheir’s opinion on Facebook advertisement?
  • Content is king and video craft and editing is important.
  • What is the 3 important features for a beginner’s website?
  • Loading of the website, graphic designing and design of the layouts are important.
  • Who are you trying to reach for your products?
  • Is email marketing effective?
  • Are newsletters are effective?
  • Personalisation of your newsletters.
  • Landing pages.
  • Branding has a variety.
  • Do different platforms like personal website, Shopify and Facebook have its advantages and disadvantages?
  • Talking about hidden fees in Shopify.
  • You need to brand yourself for being legit.
  • What Soheir’s insight on Instagram influencer marketers?
  • Seek information about an Instagram influencer marketers’ numbers of followers and people who follow them.
  • A monthly marketing budget is important.
  • Get some references from others about Instagram influencer marketers and do your research about them.


Thank you for listening!


Thank you so much for joining me for this podcast. Please do write down some feedbacks and comments. Please do share this podcast to your social media.





TOEIC: Causative Verbs

Causative verbs show that someone or something made a certain action happen.  The most common causative verbs are get, make, and have.  Verbs like order, cause, force, and want can also be causative verbs.  They are followed by noun clauses.

  • If the direct object of the causative verbs make, have, and let perform the action, the simple (base) form of a verb is used.
  • If the direct object of other causative verbs (such as get, want, order, cause, etc.) perform the action, to plus the simple (base) form of a verb is used.
  • If the direct object of the causative verb receives the action, the past participle form of a verb is used.
  1. Example: He had the secretary sign for the package.
  2. Example II: He ordered everyone to leave the room.
  3. Example: III: We will want the invoices returned at once.


  1. In the future, the company will not let its part-time and temporary employees _______ overtime.
  1. to work
  2. be working
  3. worked
  4. work

2) Despite 20 years of success, the financial stress and burden of the sudden recession made the partnership _________.

  1. fail
  2. to fail
  3. failed
  4. to be failed

3) The firm wants its product __________ safely and in a timely manner; otherwise it will seek an alternative shipper.

  1. package
  2. be packaged
  3. packaged
  4. packaging

4) All employees were able to get their pay checks ___________ before the power outage closed the banks.

  1. deposits
  2. deposited
  3. depositing
  4. be deposited

5) The severe weather conditions in the airplane regions forced the airlines _________ all outgoing flights and diver incoming planes.

  1. cancelling
  2. to cancel
  3. cancel
  4. canceled

6) I received a text message from Takeshi yesterday, and it mentioned that they had the equipment ___________ yesterday.

  1. shipped
  2. ship
  3. was shipped
  4. was being shipped

7) Before Annie ran out for a meeting yesterday, she had Ms. Brunelli _________ the new clear around the premises. 

  1. show
  2. showed
  3. showing
  4. was showed

8) The increase in layoffs over the past two fiscal periods has caused everyone ___________ less secure.

  1. feels
  2. felt
  3. was felt
  4. to feel

9) What company besides ours would make its employees __________ overtime on a national holiday?

  1. will be working
  2. worked
  3. be working
  4. work

10) A wise consumer gets his or her phone order __________ in writing before submitting payment.

  1. confirming
  2. confirms
  3. confirmed
  4. confirm




TOEIC – Verbs – Causative


TOEFL: Main Clause Structure; Partial & Complete Main Clauses

If a sentence has a subject, it must have a verb unless it’s a double-comparison structure.

If a sentence consists of a main clause and subordinate clause, each should have a subject and a verb.

The clause word is placed at or very near the boundary between the main and the subordinate clause.

Sentence Breakdowns

  1. Packet switched networks ___________ information so that it can be remembered.

a. organize

b. organic

c. organization

d. organizing


2. As some grow older, many children __________ bonds to living things such as birds, dogs, cats, and other animals (depending on the country).

a. forms

b. form

c. forming

d. a form


3. Always ____________ the necessary documents to their original place as soon as you remove them.

a. return

b. a return

c. it is returned

d. they return


4. According to a survey, test scores ___________ influentially in university admission decisions.

a. may figure

b. may be of figure

c. may be a figure

d. have a figure


5. ______________ are vibrations or a main accent in music or poetry.

a. It beats

b. Beats

C. There are beats

d. That beats



TOEIC: Transition Words

There are my absolute FAVORITE! I remember back in my college days my professor said to me, “if you can put transition words in your essay, I’ll give you A’s.  It needs flow.”  So, I did.  The result = A’s!

These transition words, just like in the writing task II of the IELTS, are imperative for creating flow, coherence, and cohesiveness.

Transition words are used to join two or more independent clauses or sentences.  When connecting two independent clauses, they may be preceded by a semi colon.

  • To show result: therefore, consequently, as a result, so, accordingly. I don’t like using hence or thus – just because that sounds like 500-year-old British English. 
  • To show contrast: however, on the other hand, nevertheless, on one hand.
  • To add information: in addition, moreover, furthermore, also
  • To give an explanation: for example, for instance


She failed to show up on time; consequently, she will be terminated. (people would probably say “omit” the comma, but I don’t.

Profits have risen considerably over the past few months. Therefore, everyone will get a year-end bonus.

Mary lacks experience in the field; however, she makes up for it by doing more than expected.

The event was advertised everywhere.  On the other hand, not that many people attended it.

The memo last Thursday was sent by email around 3pm; in addition, everyone will have a copy in their mailbox by Friday evening.

We decided to cut ties with the company.  Furthermore, we’ve told other companies in the area not to do work with them.

I travel a lot for business.  For example, I go to Singapore twice a month for meetings and Malaysia three times a month to speak.

Greg is a fast learner.  For instance, he taught himself how to use the interactive whiteboard within 30 minutes.

  1. Cable TV revolutionized communications; __________, the very existence of that service is now threatened by what’s happening in the world.
  1. consequently
  2. moreover
  3. for example
  4. nevertheless

2) Hospitals are competing for a shrinking market share; _____, they are attempting to look for the most cost-effective and highest-quality care.

  1. therefore
  2. besides
  3. also
  4. furthermore

3) These ads can bring in revenue; ____________, because they are government sponsored, they can keep costs at a minimum.

  1. for example
  2. on the whole
  3. moreover
  4. however

4) This company intends on moving shop; ____________, it will keep all other departments here.

  1. to this end
  2. nevertheless
  3. consequently
  4. furthermore

5) The contract only runs for one year; __________, there are options to renew for two more years should we need anything else.

  1. meanwhile
  2. besides
  3. however
  4. moreover

6) The sales at this shop has increased recently; __________, we are very optimistic about the future growth.

  1. however
  2. instead
  3. nevertheless
  4. also

7) Since the beginning, the bank has lent more than $1 million; ________, its membership has grown to include 40 regional companies.

  1. on the whole
  2. in conclusion
  3. in addition
  4. nevertheless

8) We, in general, are a local company; _____________, we can offer services outside but as long as its within our state lines.

  1. nevertheless
  2. meanwhile
  3. accordingly
  4. hence

9) The woman who volunteered last week at Nascar has the most hands-on experience; __________ she was hired.

  1. nevertheless
  2. furthermore
  3. however
  4. therefore

10) Our banking clients want flexibility; ___________, we provide ATMs for use.

  1. moreover
  2. however
  3. consequently
  4. furthermore


Podcast – I will go over questions 3-10 (Spoiler)


Transition Words



TOEIC: Grammar: Prepositions

Prepositions link their objects to the other structures within the sentence.  They’re used to show placement, time, direction, cause, and location.

  • At is used with a specific time of day.

We will meet at 2:00pm.

  • On is used with a specific day or date.

I will go to school on Monday.

The contract wasn’t signed on the 25th of January.

  • In is used with a month or year.

The convention is always held in August.

Toshiba was founded in 1850.

  • At is used with a specific address.

Our new hotel is at 1117 Taylor Avenue.

  • On is used with a street name.

The office used to be on Sukhumvit Road.

  • In is used with a specific city or country.

The main office is in Yangon.

We have a number of clients in Brazil.

  1. __________ all the applicants, the woman who came in dressed sloppily in blue jeans and a T-shirt has the most experience.
  1. from
  2. by
  3. of
  4. to

2. Please not that though we didn’t anticipate local authorities searching our offices, an investigation will be held ___________ Monday at 9:00am.

  1. at
  2. for
  3. to
  4. on

3. Just like bellhops, front desk receptionists, and dining room servers, all housekeepers report directly _________ the hotel manager.

  1. for
  2. at
  3. in
  4. to

4. The plant will be closed __________ noon tomorrow for its annual safety inspection.

  1. with
  2. in
  3. at
  4. from

5. We have told the new office assistant that we would like him to begin work __________ January 24.

  1. on
  2. in
  3. at
  4. for

6. If we stand ___________ this awning, we’ll be protected from the rain.

  1. over
  2. through
  3. beside
  4. beneath

7. The sales meetings Mr. Suzuki proposed in last month’s forum will officially be held ___________ Tokyo in the first week of May.

  1. to
  2. in
  3. at
  4. on

8. Though everything depends on weather conditions at this time of year, the shipment is due to arrive by cargo __________ a week.

  1. within
  2. for
  3. on
  4. until

9. The delivery service claims that they left the package ____________ 34 Huntsville Drive yesterday morning, but no one seems to have seen it.

  1. on
  2. in
  3. by
  4. at

10. According to the report publish in today’s Sun, the local government plans to reduce spending ________ one million dollars.

  1. at
  2. by
  3. with
  4. of





Prepositions PDF



TOEIC: Incomplete Sentences + Text Completion

Welcome back to a full-on blog and episode (in the YouTube video down below) about the two areas of grammar that’s features on the TOEIC test.

Without further ado – let’s get into it.

Directions: Select the best answer to complete the sentence. 

  1. The Stock Market falls when the unemployment rate ____________.
  1. will rise
  2. rises
  3. risen
  4. have risen

2. The company plans to issue ____________ for the first time next quarter.

  1. divide
  2. dividends
  3. divisive
  4. divider

3. Hix & Co. will announce sales figures from the last quarter which __________ expected to be low.

  1. will
  2. is
  3. are
  4. were

4. It is up to the head of the division to use the ___________ funds.

  1. discretionary
  2. discreet
  3. discretion
  4. discreetly

5. His budget always tends to be ____________, which protects his department from unexpected costs.

  1. inflation
  2. inflationary
  3. inflate
  4. inflated

Text Completion

Park, Lee and Associates started as ______6_____ two-person firm more than 75 years ago and has grown into South Korea’s largest Independent Certified Public Accounting firm.  _____7______ got that way by focusing on the special needs of our clients.   

We always put the client first.  We offer traditional accounting services such as audit and tax services.  We also act as consultants and can provide a number of new, innovative services such as fund start-up services. 

We help business owners save money and protect themselves from risk.  we help individuals protect ____8____ assets, plan for the future, and minimise taxes.

____9____ services set us apart from other firms.

6) a, one, this, the

7) They, She, We, It

8) our, her, its, their

9) this, that, these, the




TOEIC- Incomplete Sentences + Text – PDF

TOEIC Grammar: Double Comparatives & Order of Adverbs

Double comparatives

  • Our nation gets fatter and fatter every year.
  • more and more + adjective :
    The problem is getting more and more difficult to solve.To say that something is increasing all the time.

    We can use comparatives with the definite article the

    The more you say, the worse the situation will be. The more, the merrier.

    To say that two changes happen together.

    Order of Adverbs

    Adverbs that go in mid-position express:

    • frequency: never, rarely, always …
    • certainty: probably, certainly, obviously …
    • degree: nearly, almost, quite …The word order for adverbs in mid-position is as follows:



Auxiliary verb


Main Verb


To be in simple tense





Perfect tenses





this film

Modal auxiliary verb






Simple tenses





Passive with two auxiliary verbs




been remembered

for his novels

Only and even go just before the words they emphasize. It will only take (only) five minutes.

  • They have even forgotten (even) his name.

Sometimes / sometime / some time

Sometimes: means occasionally

Sometime: means at one moment in the future (it can also mean “one day”)

Let’s have dinner sometime next week.

Some time: means a period of time

She’s lived in Italy for some time, so she speaks Italian quite well.