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Out and About - Direction Words and Terms

Quiz playing is a wonderful way to increase your knowledge of English as a Second Language. Remember that all of our ESL quizzes have titles that are both friendly and serious at the same time… In the case of this quiz you might like to tell your friends about “Out and About” but no doubt your teachers will talk about the “Direction Words and Terms quiz”! If you hear a specific term and you want to find a quiz about the subject then just look through the list of quiz titles until you find what you need.

When you arrive in Britain, you will not 'know your way around'. You will need to learn some direction words and terms to discover places through maps and talking to people. This Quiz helps you to practise the language and terms you will need for this when you are 'out and about'.

  1. Pick the best word (or words) to fit in the gap:
    There is a small food store just ... ... the ... ... .
    'Beyond' = 'on the far side of'. We might say 'after' here, meaning 'after you have reached the bus stop and gone past it'.
  2. Pick the best word (or words) to fit in the gap:
    ' ... ... this road ... ... you come to the railway station.'
    We can't 'continue a road', although we might 'continue along it' (or up, or down it).
    'Unless' would mean that if we did come to the station, we would be on the wrong road anyway and have to change onto another one. That doesn't really sound right!
  3. Pick the best word (or words) to fit in the gap:
    ' ... ... past the ... ... lights outside the sports centre.'
    'Carry on' means 'keep going' (as in Answer 3). You may have seen mugs, posters and other souvenirs with the words 'KEEP CALM and CARRY ON' ~ a phrase from back during World War 2, when British people needed to go on with their normal lives as far as possible. even when circumstances were hard. In terms of street directions, 'carry on' means that you keep walking, unless or until you need to do anything else (such as turn into another road).
    In Britain we tend to speak of 'traffic lights', or even just 'lights'; we don't usually call them 'red' or any other colour (even though they do seem to be at red, more often than not, when we come to them!).
  4. Pick the best word (or words) to fit in the gap:
    'If the weather is fine, you might like to walk ... ... the churchyard and ... ... the canal.'
    Answer 3 is best, because you would walk 'among the graves' but 'through the churchyard', and 'along beside' makes it clear that you would be going parallel with the canal, but without getting your feet wet by trying to walk on the water!
    Answer 4 is obviously silly.
    You could go 'across' the churchyard, but 'through' carries a stronger suggestion that you might find it interesting to look around you while you are there (e.g. observing the styles and ages of some of the graves: the names, dates and stories ~ as a matter of human and cultural interest ~ instead of going quickly past).
  5. Pick the best word (or words) to fit in the gap:
    'The ... ... has been painted ... ... instead of red, in honour of a 2012 Olympic champion who lived in our town.'
    Perhaps if you are in Britain you may see one of these. There are over 100 of them around the country!
  6. Pick the best word (or words) to fit in the gap:
    ' ... ... the third street on your left, and the post office is ... ... the supermarket.'
    Answer 2 is right in each case.
    You can't 'turn a street' (Answer 4) in English, but you can 'turn into a street'.
    If two buildings are facing each other with a road in between them, we say they are 'opposite' each other. 'Against' would suggest that there is nothing else in between them. ('He sat against the wall.') ... in which case, how could anyone squeeze in between to get there?
  7. Pick the best word (or words) to fit in the gap:
    'The ... ... is just ... ... the next corner ~ I can smell it already!'
    'Round the corner' means that the shop is just on the far side ('beyond the corner', but you have to turn to find it).
    British people sometimes say 'just round the corner' when a place is in fact a bit further away than the next street: their favourite pub, or the place where they meet their friends for worship (church / synagogue / mosque / temple etc.), which might be about a kilometre away and take ten minutes or more to reach on foot. We also say '(just) down the road' ~ as in 'We still get Christmas cards from that couple who used to live down the road' ~ even if they were not quite in the actual same street. They might have been 'down the main road', in another town or village perhaps.
  8. Pick the best word (or words) to fit in the gap:
    'Go ... ... the bridge and you will see ... ... cathedral nearby on the other side.'
    Most cities only have one Cathedral, so it would be 'the cathedral' and not just 'a cathedral'. (Some major cities have more than one, like London, Dublin and Liverpool; we don't believe any city has more than two!)
    We can go 'over' or 'across' (the top of) a bridge, or 'under' it (or possibly 'underneath', particularly if we then stay there to visit a shop or something inside the archway), or maybe 'through' it. No other preposition would make good sense here.
  9. Pick the best word (or words) to fit in the gap:
    'Go down the road, and the cinema is ... '
    Answer 3 is best, but 'to your left (or right)' is also possible. Things are usually 'on' one side or the other in English.
  10. Pick the best word (or words) to fit in the gap:
    'When you reach the station, walk ... ... the stairs and you will see the ticket office ... ... you.'
    It does not make much sense to walk 'across' a staircase (Answer 2), and you can't very easily go 'along' it (Answer 1) unless it is more or less flat (like the water in a canal) ... and a flat staircase wouldn't be very helpful, would it?
    If the ticket-window were 'behind you' (Answer 1) it would be hard for you to see; '(straight) ahead of you' is possible (Answer 2), but 'across' made no sense.
    So Answer 4 is the only one that fits sensibly in both places.

Author: Ian Miles

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