I know the feeling. I have been there. You have studied English really hard this year. You have been willing to go the extra mile a thousand times because you knew it was going to be worth your while. You have even burnt the candle at both ends staying up too late and getting up too early when studying for finals. Now you feel really happy with your effort, and it is time to take a breather. At last, after struggling for a long time with English pronunciation you are able to communicate in English fluently and understand native speakers pretty well, at least in an academic context.
Just by sheer luck, at a party, you are introduced to a British person and you feel it’s your opportunity to shine. You feel confident. You have a little chat and everything is going well. You are beginning to relax when all of a sudden, you are like…
- “Did he just say something about the skin of my teeth?”
- “Hot potato? Where are the potatoes? I can’t see any! Oh my God! Is this English?”
- “Did he just say “you rock!”?, and now what ? Am I supposed to take him to a rock concert or maybe he wants me to sing rock?”
Yes. I’ve been there. I know how you feel. Native speakers use idioms all the time, just like you do in your own native language, probably without realizing it. The good news is that you can do something about it. It’s true that it’s quite difficult to feel confident using idiomatic expressions when you’re speaking a foreign language, and I wouldn’t dare suggest that you use them, but you need to know what they mean if you want to follow a conversation.
In this quiz you’ll find some very common idioms used by native speakers.
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Tool used: Riddle
25 COMMON IDIOMS
If something is on your bucket list
You need to buy it quickly
You want to do it before you die
It is something you do when it is raining
If you cut corners
You do something in the easiest or most inexpensive way
You are in a strong position when you are competing with someone else
You stop doing something before you have finished
If you bite off more than you can chew
You eat everything on a plate, thus depriving anyone else of having any
You take on a task that is way too big
You drink very heavily
If you hit the sack
you go to bed
you go to the gym
you quit your job
If you do something once in a blue moon
You do it very often
You do it once a month
You do it very rarely
If something is a piece of cake
It is easy or simple
It is very sweet
It is only for girls
If you see eye to eye with someone
You are in love with someone
You agree on something with someone
You have a dispute with someone
If you rock
You love music
You love dancing
If you do something by the skin of your teeth
You do it by a very narrow margin, only just
You do it because you’re very stubborn
You do it because it’s important for your health
If you go the extra mile
You run a marathon although you haven’t trained for it
You pay a lot of money for something
You make a special effort to achieve something
If you cannot get your head around something
you cannot decide between two options
you don’t understand something
you cannot attend an event because you have a headache
If something is a far cry from something else
It is very different
It is very far
It is very irritating
If something is a hot potato
It is an issue that makes you very happy
It is an issue that sounds unbelievable
It is an issue which many people are talking about and which is usually disputed
If you beat around the bush
You do whatever it takes to help someone
You avoid talking about a difficult or embarrassing subject
You begin to talk about important things
If you pull yourself together
you calm down and behave normally
you state a fact so that there are no doubts or objections
you start studying for finals
If you blow smoke
You are a chain- smoker
you exaggerate or say things that aren’t true to make you seem better
You speak in an angry tone
If something is a no-brainer
it is priceless
it has no brains
it is an easy decision
If you take something with a pinch of salt
you don’t completely believe something
you add salt in it because it is insipid
you assume something is true without checking
If you hit the books
You throw the books away because you don’t plan to use them again
You begin to study in a serious way
You don’t like books
If something is up in the air
It is very light and it floats
It is very high and you cannot reach it
It is uncertain or unsure
If you sit tight
You wait patiently
You take a test or an exam
You are in a comfortable position
If you face the music
You do what somebody wants you to do
You are in an excellent state of health
You accept the consequences of your mistakes or actions
If something rings a bell
It sounds familiar
It is musical
It is important
If you cut to the chase
You take shortcuts to get somewhere
You leave the unnecessary details and get to the point
You stop chasing someone
If someone kicks the bucket
They reveal a secret
They break their leg and have to use crutches
68 thoughts on “A Quiz: 25 Common Idioms that you Really Need to Know”
So happy you find the quiz helpful!
Yeah! I already know some of them! But thanks to you, I got to find out some more and very helpful.
I really pleased to find this site on bing, just what I
was searching for 😀 also bookmarked.
Thanks. Very kind of you to leave a comment!
Christina, you are great by forming this quiz.
Yes. I agree. Some idioms can be misleading, but most of them are easy to learn.
Thank you for yor comment
I’m happy you find it helpful!
Yeah! It rings a distant bell! hahahah
Does it ring a bell Cristina?
This idiom was posted yesterday.
Very useful. Thanks!
The quiz is very useful, some idioms are tricky and misleading to the wrong meanings. Anyway it is very interesting. Thanks
Good! I” m happy you find it useful!
Yeah! My students already now some of them! But thanx to you they got ot find out some more 🙂 Спасибо!
I switched from being an Engineer to English Teacher, some 5 years ago. Actually I retired early, after being made redundant as there was a recession in the Telecom Industry towards the end of 1999. I was creating websites, House Design Plans and other jobs but not ‘involved’ with people enough (and not making enough money).
I have been working in China as a Native English Teacher for the past 4 years and will be teaching at HNU (Hunan University in Changsha) from 11th September).
Chinese Students, do not seem to learn many IDIOMS but its useful for any student wanting to become FLUENT in English (and help improve IELTS Grade to learn some of the more popular IDIOMS that are most common.
This is a really good Quiz Christina – thank you very much for this.
I will try and make good use of it in China.
I am glad you found it useful!
I hope you’ve learned some new idioms!