Learning English with your iPhone part 3: Monster English

Learning English shouldn’t always be about working hard, you need to have some fun every now and then. As a result, this week we’re looking at games for your iPhone that can help you with your English.

Although this is presented as a game, it’s actually very informative and useful.  More of that later.  First though, the premise of the game, and you’ll have to bear with me here.  The main character, Major Satellite has travelled to far-off lands and discovered several types of monsters.  Yes that’s right,  monsters.  Anyway, the Major captured the monsters and put them in boxes to bring them home to study, but on the way home the monster started escaping and now Major Satellite needs you to bash them back into their boxes!  According to the animated opening sequence, the monsters have picked up some English, but make a lot of mistakes.  What you need to do is to use your English skills to hit the smartest monsters to put them back in their box.  In other words, you have to choose the correct answer to the question being asked.  The quicker you choose the correct answer, the more points you earn.  You can then spend your points in the Monster Mart on items such as a Cake Cannon, though I’m not sure what the purpose of this is as you can’t use the items in the game.

The first few levels of the game deal mainly with spelling and punctuation, but as the levels progress the app tests you a wider range of language, including tenses, adverbs, adjectives, synonyms and sentence construction.  There are 5 levels with 21 separate tests, each more challenging than the one before.  The gameplay gets faster and the questions harder, so you’ll need quick-fire reactions to keep up as well as a good knowledge of English.  Competing against the clock makes the game really addictive, and the game is a brilliant, easy way to brush up on your English.

You can download the app here.  If you'd like to read part one and part two of my series on iPhone learning apps, you can do here and here.  Remember, all of these apps are completely free.  Give them a go!

Glossary

  • the premise - (n.) the basic idea of the game
  • to bear with sby - (idiom) used to ask someone to be patient while you are explaining an idea
  • to bash - (v.) to hit
  • to pick up a language - (phr. v.) to learn a few words of a language
  • the smartest - (adj.) the most intelligent or cleverest
  • the purpose of sth - (fixed expression) the reason for sth
  • quick-fire reactions - (adj.+n.) the ability to think and act quickly
  • addictive - (adj.) if something is addictive, you enjoy doing it and find it hard to stop
  • to brush up on - (v. phr.) to practise and improve

By Andy.

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