Hump Day Monday – Temporada 2 S2E1

Welcome to the second season of the enlightening and entertaining series of Hump Day Monday from SELVA inglés! My name is Jessica Ojeda, your all-time favorite English teacher and host of HDM.

¿Qué es Hump Day Monday?

Simply put, HDM is a series of videos where your English questions get answered by me! I’ll choose a few of your questions each week that I think will be most helpful for you and answer them in a new episode of HDM every Monday (I might skip one or two.)

For more information about what Hump Day Monday is all about check out this post!

¿Cómo Puedo Participar en Hump Day Monday?

It’s EASY!

Join us in the COMUNIDAD DE DUDAS in G+!

1 – Ask your English questions (in the correct categories please).

2 – Answer other people’s English questions (if you feel like you have something to add to the conversation, please do! Even if it’s just to say, ¨”Yo también!”)

3 – Share English learning resources you’ve found helpful with the community. For example, one of my personal favorite sites for chatting and listening to Spanish is and Amazon’s first cartoon, Tumble Leaf [HD], may be the next big thing for ESL learners!

4 – If you’re really into HDM, ask to become a moderator to help keep the community in line! 😉

Also, help HDM grow by sharing each episode with your friends on your social network of choice or personal blog. Use the hashtag #HDM2!

Let’s dive in to the first question this season!

Season 2?

Marcos Jose Ramos asked:

“Hi jessica when do you come back?, Season 2?”

Well, it’s finally here! Season 2 of Hump Day Monday starts now!

Estoy En Shock!

Another Hump Day Monday question from our hyper poster of the week, Juan Matias!

“cuando se usa OH MY GIVENESS??”

I’d like to thank ABA English for their simple and to-the-point answer:

“Se dice “Oh my goodness” ya que la palabra “giveness” no existe en inglés. Y se utiliza como exclamación, como “oh Diós mío”.”

You can use expressions like OH MY GOODNESS to express shock or surprise in English. Here are a few more expressions to express shock:

  • Oh my goodness!
  • Oh my God!
  • Oh my gosh! (for people who don’t like using God in non-religious contexts)
  • Oh my!
  • Holy cow!
  • Holy crap!
  • Holy shit! (warning: vulgar!)

Me duele la cabeza.

Cristian Cuevas Vallejo asks:

“si quiero decir : mi dedo me duele
en inglés sería: my finger hurts
eso tengo entendido… pero, también puedo usar “my finger hurts me” ?
o cual es la manera correcta?”

So, here’s a little case of Spanish grammar being brought over to English. In English the structure of expressing things about oneself is different. In Spanish you generally don’t say “mi cabeza” since it’s understood from the “me”. However, in English we lack this reflexiveness and we don’t use articles, but possessive pronouns when referring to personal body things.

So, we don’t say:

  • The finger hurts me.

We say:

  • My finger hurts.
  • My finger’s hurting.
  • My finger is killing me!

Entiendo inglés escrito…

…pero no hablado.

Rodrigo Contreras states an all-too-common scenario for foreign language learners in his question for HDM:

“sabes que yo puedo  entender todo escrito pero casi nada cuando me hablan”

William Hernandez Ayala says the same.

“Rodrigo me pasa lo mismo  jessica cual es el problema que tengo que hacer para escuchar y entender puesto que al leer en ingles entiendo una gran parte del texto que estoy leyendo pero no me pasa lo mismo al escucharlo que podemos hacer Jessica de ante mano gracias.”

Camila Goméz offers these fellas this advice:

“Quizás debes escuchar mucho más inglés, ¿te gustan las canciones, los videos o los podcast? puedes probar con el que más te guste y dedicarle unos minutos diariamente o puede entrar a páginas para chatear en inglés usando micrófono. Tal vez al comienzo te sentirás enredado, pero en la medida en que escuches más, entenderás más.”

And I’ve got to agree with Cami! If you can read English, but you can’t understand spoken English, the key to your success is listening to a lot more English.

The real question is what should you listen to?

Let me explain this by telling you about my situation with spoken and written Spanish. There was a time when I could write and read just about anything in Spanish…back when I was studying Spanish grammar in college. This ability lead me to believe I was fluent…haha. Yeah, on paper! Right before my study abroad trip to Mexico back in 2005 I thought I was going to understand and learn so much Spanish that summer. However, what I learned was that my pronunciation didn’t match up with the natives’ pronunciation and so much so that I barely understood a thing. They understood my poorly pronounced Spanish, but I hardly got a word when they spoke to me. I was let down, but I didn’t let that stop me.

I knew I had the ability to learn Spanish. I was determined just like you are to learn English. You wouldn’t be Hump Day Mondaying with me if you didn’t. You’re putting in a lot of hard work, and I’m here to see to it that you put the effort in the right places and you’re hard work pays off. Therefore, to understand spoken English you’ve just got to listen to more of it. However, if you don’t understand hardly anything of what you’re listening to, how much do you think you’re learning? You’re learning what English sounds like. For example, even though I don’t speak Russian AT ALL I’ve heard it enough on TV to be able to identify it. But you need to be able to do much more than just identify English. You need to understand it while you’re listening to it. But you say you can’t, right? Wrong. You’re just listening to English above your current level and it isn’t doing you any good. To improve your English, you’ve got to understand it and be interested in it.

So, to answer the question what should you listen to? Simple, to learn English listen to something that you understand a good portion of and also something that interests you. Spongebob was my go-to learning tool to improve my listening comprehension in Spanish. I watched every episode I could find. By the time I finished, I understood a whole lot more Spanish than when I started. I didn’t care so much that I didn’t understand everything at first since Spongebob was entertaining and pretty easy to follow along with. However, episode after episode I could feel my vocabulary building. And it wasn’t building in just words; it was building in naturally spoken phrases the characters repeated time after time. That brings me to my next big point: REPETITION.


Did I say repetition? It’s not very effective to just listen to any and all English. If you browse through different programs you’re going to hear different phrases. You don’t need to hear different phrases. You need to hear the same phrase over and over again until it becomes natural to you. Therefore, don’t channel surf. Stick to one show, song, movie series, or whatever and watch only that.

For Beginner Listeners

  • Pocoyo
  • Anytime Tales
  • ESL Pod
  • Repeat only a few easy listening songs (easy listening is a type of music and it’s really probably the easiest of all genres to understand) A few artists include John Mayer, Tracy Chapman, and The Wallflowers.

For Listeners in the Middle

  • The Simpsons
  • Spongebob
  • TED talks
  • All easy listening songs

For Advanced Listeners

  • How I Met Your Mother
  • Friends
  • Everybody Loves Raymond
  • National Public Radio
  • Audio books

To sum up this section:

Listen repeatedly to something you like and can follow along with.

Does …BODY mean the same as …ONE?

Our next Hump Day Monday question also comes from la Comunidad de Dudas and was asked by Juan Matias. Thanks Juan for the perfect HDM question.

Quite a few students and teachers (I’m even guilty at times) of making English more complicated than it needs to be.
The truth is words like EVERYBODY and EVERYONE are basically the same. Some people may say that one is more or less formal than the other, but which one??? They’re so close that if another teacher told me that EVERYONE is more formal, I’d be like “cool”. And if that same teacher told me that EVERYBODY is more formal, I’d also be like, “cool.” Basically, they’re so darn close, who cares!?

The one and only thing you need to know about ONE and BODY is with NOBODY and NO ONE. See it? “NO ONE” is written as two words and it’s my assumption that it’s because there are two Os. It would just look silly to write “NOONE” together…not to mention, the phonetics are really thrown off when it’s written together…and you know how much we appreciate phonics in English, don’t you? (sarcastically asking)

To sum it all up:

  • anyone = anybody
  • everyone = everybody
  • someone = somebody
  • no one = nobody

I’ll let you in on a little secret that I’ve never told a soul. I used to avoid writing NO ONE because I could never remember if it was one or two words. Not knowing if a word is just a word or is two words is a common occurrence in English…like it is in Spanish. You Spanish speakers do this too! For example, I come across alomejor, aveces, enserio, etc. quite often on the Net.  So, let’s not be too hard on ourselves and learn to avoid some of the most commonly misspelled and confused words!

Kind, Sort, Type

Felipe Vargas asks our next Hump Day Monday question!

“Mi pregunta es: ¿Cúal es la diferencia entre “kind” y “sort”, en qué casos se utiliza cada una?,  Gracias”

One of the biggest differences to note for ESL learners is that KIND OF and SORT OF can mean SOMEWHAT, but TYPE OF doesn’t.

Más o Menos

  • I sort of understand. = Más o menos entiendo.
  • I kind of understand. = Más o menos entiendo.
  • I type of understand. = WHAT? You can’t say this. 😉


Used as nouns KIND, SORT, and TYPE all pretty much mean TIPO.

  • What kind of car do you drive?
  • What sort of  car do you drive?
  • What type of car do you drive?

The above three sentences all mean ¿Qué tipo de coche manejas?.

Some people believe there’s a small difference in meaning in KIND and TYPE. I’ll explain this with the following examples.

  • “What kind of car do you drive?” “I drive a Honda.”
  • “What sort of car do you drive?” “I drive a small two-door sports car.”

However, I disagree with this since I think it’s really too vague to know what a person is asking for. Therefore, speakers sometimes give example answers after their question so that the listeners know what the speaker is looking for and how to answer. Let’s look at this.

  • “What kind of car do you drive? Chevy, Dodge, Jeep?” “I drive a Honda.”
  • “What sort of car do you drive? Four-door, van, truck?” “I drive a small two-door sports car.”

Una Especie

The following three sentences all mean “Comimos algún tipo de pastel.”

  • We ate some kind of cake.
  • We ate some sort of cake.
  • We ate some type of cake.


The first Hump Day Monday question comes from Franciszko Monzzon from our G+ Comunidad de Dudas!

“OK. Una pregunta simple. Cual es la diferencia entre “I will make my homework”, ” I shall make my homework ” y “I’m going to make my homework” y en que situaciones puedo usar cada una.
Desde ya, Gracias.”

So many English learners wonder about how to express the future. So, this is a perfect Hump Day Monday question! 🙂
However, before we get started learning about the future, let’s address the MAKE/DO problem. A few years ago I did a lesson on when to use MAKE and when to use DO in English. The two are very often confused. We do our homework. We make our beds. There are lots of expressions with MAKE. There are fewer expressions with DO. Learn the ones with DO and know that if it’s not DO, then it’s probably MAKE. You can’t learn everything. Don’t try! 😉

Now that that’s out of the way, let’s look at when to use SHALL, WILL, and GOING TO.


Use SHALL occasionally…or not at all. Why occasionally? Because if you overuse SHALL you sound awkward…like you’re either overly sarcastic or trying to speak British English!


Shall I help you?

  • Can I help you?
  • May I help you?
  • Would you like me to help you?
  • Do you want me to help you?
  • You want some help? (This is what an American would probably say.)

Notice you can’t use WILL to make offers.


Shall we make reservations?

  • Should we make reservations?
  • Do we need to make reservations?

Notice you can’t use WILL to make suggestions.

Formal and Legal

There shall be compliance with the new regulations.

  • There will be compliance with the new regulations.
  • The new regulations will be enforced.

Notice you CAN use WILL in formal and legal speech.


This too shall pass.

  • This won’t last forever.

Notice you CAN use WILL to make a promise.


You shall regret this!

  • You’re going to regret this!
  • You’re gonna regret this!
  • You’ll regret this.

Notice you CAN use WILL to make a threat.

(OJO: I teach American English. You’ll find different “rules” if you’re learning British English.)

Check out this forum post on for more great examples of how to replace SHALL with natural American English. You’ll see more alternative ways to express what you want without using SHALL.


Like SHALL, WILL can be used to express the future. However, WILL and SHALL aren’t always interchangeable. Notice in the above examples where I didn’t provide an alternate version of the SHALL sentence with WILL. For example, in the example sentences for making an offer there isn’t a sentence with WILL since you don’t use WILL to make offers.

Don’t confuse SHALL and WILL.

So, in explaining SHALL we basically covered the differences in SHALL and WILL.

  • SHALL can be used to make suggestions and offers. WILL cannot.
  • Both SHALL and WILL can be used in formal and legal speech and to make promises and threats.

Don’t confuse WILL and GOING TO.

Use WILL for Decisions Just Made

  • “Somebody’s knocking at the door.” “I’ll get it.”
  • “The power just went out. Will you call the power company?” “Sure babe, I’ll call. I know you hate using the phone.”


Use GOING TO for decisions you’ve already made.

  • “I’m not going to set a New Year’s resolution this year. I usually end up disappointed on February 1st when I realize I haven’t stuck with my resolutions.”
  • “We’re going to Mardi Gras in New Orleans next year.”
  • “Weren’t you going to do the laundry this week?” “Yes, but I forgot and have been so busy. Can you do it?” “Ok, I’ll do it this week, but you’re going to do the laundry for the next two. Got it?” “Got it.”

Southern American English

You probably know I love English. And I love Southern American English the most! It’s my “native” language. haha Ok, it’s not that different from standard English, but it’s got some unique characteristics that make southerners stand out in the mix of English speakers. This is just a little HDM bonus!


You know how we like contractions in spoken English already. Well, southerners take contractions to a whole ‘nother level. I’MMA is a contraction for I AM GOING TO.

Other common contractions are:

  • I’m going to (standard written)
  • I’m gonna (what I consider standard spoken)
  • I’m gon’ (Southern American English)

Somethin’ ‘nother

SOMETHIN’ ‘NOTHER means something unspecified.

The phrase is either SOMETHING OR ANOTHER or SOMETHING OR OTHER. I’d say the latter is the most common. However, in the South, it’s SOMETHIN’ ‘NOTHER.

  • She was talking about somethin’ ‘nother while I was watching TV. I don’t know what she said.
  • Alex studies something or other at the university.

Nare ‘nother


  • I don’t think nare ‘nother storm’s coming.
  • She don’t wanna hear nare ‘nother excuse come from your mouth! (Yes, I said “She don’t” because REAL native English speakers do ALL the time…it actually hurts my ears, but I’m trying to learn to live with it since it doesn’t look like it’s going away anytime soon. You can hear it all day long in country music lyrics.)

Alright, this concludes the first episode of HDM Season 2.

Please help us grow by SHARING and COMMENTING!

What can you comment??? Well, anything you like, but I’ll give you some ideas.

  • What did you learn new in this episode? Come on…I know you learned something!
  • What did you like or not like in today’s show? (content, duration, written notes, etc.)
  • What do you want to see in the next episode?

I appreciate all your help!

I love y’all and look forward to another episode soon!