📚 English Speeches' Newsletter #45

Learn English with Speeches, News, Grammar, Quizzes & More

Hello, English Speeches community!

Welcome to our 45th newsletter, a beacon for English learners aimed at broadening both language skills and cultural comprehension. This edition is packed with enriching content, thoughtfully curated for your learning and growth.

  • Dive into the English with News section, featuring a detailed look at the Baltimore Bridge collapse—a narrative blending crucial vocabulary with insights into maritime safety and the global supply chain's fragility.

  • Explore the Speak Like a Native segment, where we decode "Mayday," unveiling its historical roots and significance in modern communication.

  • Our Article of the Week shifts focus to the nuanced world of phrasal verbs, essential for anyone striving to sound like a native speaker. It's a deep dive into English's dynamic and colloquial aspects that shape fluent conversation.

  • In English Speeches, we reflect on Kailash Satyarthi's noble quest for childhood freedom, delivering a powerful message on global compassion and unity.

Join us on this week's journey of discovery and personal growth, as we tackle topics designed to elevate your English learning experience. Let’s venture forth together! 😊


Baltimore Bridge Collapse: A Maritime Mishap

This week, we're looking into a major incident that occurred at the Baltimore port, where a cargo ship struck the Francis Scott Key Bridge, leading to its partial collapse. This event not only caused a significant disruption at one of the United States' busiest ports but also sparked concerns over the implications for the global supply chain and maritime safety.

Key Words:

  • Collapse: (v.) To fall down or cave in suddenly. (The Key Bridge collapsed after being hit by a ship.)

  • Port: (n.) A town or city with a harbor where ships load or unload. (Baltimore's port is among the country's busiest.)

  • Cargo Ship: (n.) A large ship designed to carry goods. (The cargo ship known as the Dali was involved in the incident.)

  • Maritime: (adj.) Related to the sea and navigation. (The incident raised questions about maritime safety.)

  • Supply Chain: (n.) The sequence of processes involved in the production and distribution of a commodity. (The bridge collapse has sparked fears about supply chain disruption.)

The incident brings to the forefront the critical role of infrastructure integrity and emergency preparedness in mitigating the impact of unforeseen disasters. The ability of the Dali's crew to send a critical emergency alert, enabling authorities to clear the bridge of further car traffic, highlights the importance of quick response mechanisms in such situations.


"Mayday": A Universal Distress Call

Did you know the word "Mayday" originates from the French phrase "m'aidez," meaning "help me"? Coined in the 1920s by Frederick Stanley Mockford, a senior radio officer, "Mayday" was designed to be an easily understood distress signal for pilots and ground staff in the emerging field of aviation. Mockford chose this expression to ensure clear communication during emergencies, especially considering the frequent flights between Croydon and Le Bourget Airport in Paris.

Today, "Mayday" is internationally recognized as the distress call for life-threatening emergencies, particularly in aviation and maritime situations. It is repeated three times, "Mayday, Mayday, Mayday," to highlight the urgency and prevent any miscommunication. This term not only demonstrates the importance of effective communication in critical moments but also showcases the influence of language in global safety protocols.


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Navigating the World of Phrasal Verbs

This week, we shift our focus to the essential yet challenging aspect of English: phrasal verbs. Unlike idioms, phrasal verbs consist of a verb plus a preposition or adverb, creating meanings that are not always obvious from the individual words. They are fundamental to sounding like a native speaker, adding fluency and depth to your conversations.

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Key Insights:

  • Understanding Phrasal Verbs: These expressions are crucial for everyday communication, reflecting the dynamic and colloquial nature of the English language.

  • Common Challenges: For learners, phrasal verbs can be perplexing due to their idiomatic meanings and the vast number of variations.

  • Examples and Meanings: Get familiar with expressions like "call off" (to cancel something) and "dive into" (to start something enthusiastically), which are staples in native English dialogue.

  • Learning Strategies: Immersing yourself in English media, practicing with native speakers, and regular use can demystify these expressions, enhancing both comprehension and usage.

For those eager to embrace the complexity and richness of English, mastering phrasal verbs is a significant milestone. Discover more about this fascinating topic and expand your verbal arsenal by exploring the full article below.


Kailash Satyarthi: Childhood Restored

Dive into the powerful narrative delivered by Nobel Peace Prize winner Kailash Satyarthi, where he passionately advocates for the liberation and restoration of childhood globally. In Oslo, Satyarthi's address not only captivates but also implores the world to unite in compassion, aiming to secure a future where every child's freedom is guaranteed.

Key Points for English Learners:

  • Emotive Vocabulary and Rhetorical Questions: Satyarthi's speech is saturated with emotionally charged words and rhetorical questions, enhancing its persuasive impact.

  • Varied Sentence Structures: Featuring a mix of complex and simple sentences, the speech offers a rich resource for understanding nuanced English usage.

  • Global Humanitarian Context: It provides a profound look into global child rights issues, emphasizing the role of individual and collective action in making a difference.


Let's test your understanding of English grammar and the key points in the speech above:

  1. "Childhood is __________, no compromise."
    A. negotiable
    B. non-negotiable
    C. unnecessary

  2. "If childhood is lost in one part of the world, the childhood of __________ is lost."
    A. a few
    B. the entire humanity
    C. that region only

  3. "My whole life has just one single aim. That is to restore __________."
    A. power
    B. wealth
    C. childhood

Check your understanding and see if you've grasped the key points of the speech. The correct answers are waiting for you further down—keep reading to see how you did!


This section delves into the profound vocabulary used by Kailash Satyarthi in his speech, illuminating two pivotal words: "non-negotiable" and "divinity."

Non-negotiable: (adj.) Something that is not open to discussion or modification; absolute.

  • Example: "Satyarthi emphasizes that childhood and freedom are non-negotiable, underscoring their absolute importance."

Divinity: (n.) The state of being divine, associated with godliness or a higher spiritual power.

  • Example: "Referring to childhood and freedom as divine gifts, Satyarthi elevates their significance to that of a sacred right."


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In the landscape of learning English, you'll encounter countless voices and opinions. Influencers and experts often advocate for specific rules, pronunciations, and norms, suggesting there's a singular 'correct' way to speak and understand the language. It can feel like navigating a dense forest, with each path claiming to be the only right one.

Yet, it's crucial to remember that language learning is a deeply personal journey. The unique inflections of your voice, the heritage of your accent, and the individuality of your expression are treasures in the world of English. While it's important to learn the rules and structures, integrating them with your personal identity is what truly brings the language to life.

Embracing Ralph Waldo Emerson's wisdom, "To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment," serves as a powerful guide. Amidst the sea of shoulds and musts, maintaining your authenticity is paramount. In mastering English, let the language be a tool for expressing your true self, not a mold that reshapes your identity. Your authenticity is not just your uniqueness; it's your strength.


Are you on the lookout for something intriguing and enriching? Dive into our specially selected collection of newsletters. We've scoured various topics to bring you the best, ensuring there's something for everyone. 🌍

From the latest trends to timeless wisdom, our recommendations are a gateway to a world of knowledge and discovery. Whether it's for learning, inspiration, or just a good read, you're sure to find something that piques your interest.

English Quiz Answers: 1.b | 2.b| 3.c

We're grateful for your continued companionship on this language-learning voyage. Don't hesitate to share your thoughts, ideas, or inquiries. Together, we'll keep exploring, expanding, and expressing ourselves with confidence in the English language!

Keep learning and thriving,

Founder, English Speeches YouTube Channel

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