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ESL Easily Confused Words (Intermediate +)

Updated on March 5, 2015
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For ESL Students

Below are over 60 sentences to test your students' knowledge of these easily confused words.

Learners must choose the word in brackets and put it into the correct form.

Answers at the bottom.

Confused?

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  1. I've _______ him since we were teenagers. (Know/Meet)
  2. I _______ up in a small village, it's a much safer place to _______ a family. (Grow/Raise)
  3. I _______ my mobile phone at the party. (Miss/Lose)
  4. My brother __________ how to built a website after doing an online course. (Learn/Teach)
  5. If you had gotten up earlier, you wouldn't have ________ the flight. (Miss/Lose)
  6. The jets at the Paris Air Show took off in _______ . It was spectacular. (Training/Formation)
  7. The company set up the veterinary ________ 10 years ago. (Practice/Practise)
  8. I __________ your penknife to open the bottle. (Lend/Borrow)
  9. The doctor _________ him to reduce his salt intake, but I don't think he's going to take that _________. (Advice/Advise)
  10. My dad tried to __________ me chess, but I couldn't remember all the rules. (Learn/Teach)
  11. Have you ______ arrangements for the wedding? (Do/Make)
  12. My boss _______ me he was going to fire 2 staff members. (Speak/Tell)
  13. Joe is worried about the upcoming concert, so he'll have to _________ more. (Practice/Practise)
  14. I didn't _____ what she said, was she upset? (Listen/Hear)
  15. I _______ my new teacher today, he seems friendly. (Know/Meet)
  16. Do you fancy _____ a game of rugby? (Play/Do)
  17. I would hate to have his job. He works every day _______ on Mondays. (Accept/Except)
  18. I've never ______ to that restaurant before. (To be/To go)
  19. I don't like _______ interviews, they make me nervous. (Do/Make)
  20. He _______ €100 at the weekend. (Win/Earn)
  21. I didn't ________ her the money, so I don't know how she managed to pay for the shoes. (Lend/Borrow)
  22. They _______ at the stars all night. (Stare/Gaze)
  23. I ________ Mike to play on my team because he's the fastest runner. (Chose/Choose)
  24. She is _______ to everyone that he is a good musician. (Try/Prove)
  25. We should get a ________ of friends to help us move house. (Couple/Pair)
  26. The company are required to give their staff ________ in health and safety. (Training/Formation)
  27. Can you _______ to mum and ask her if we can go to the cinema tonight? (Speak/Tell)
  28. There are a lot of _______ coming to the city looking for work. (Foreigner/Stranger)
  29. A gang of criminals ______ the jeweller's shop on Thursday. (Rob/Steal)
  30. She _______ a bad salary. She finds it difficult to survive. (Win/Earn)
  31. He was ______ at me for ages and it made me feel uncomfortable. (Stare/Gaze)
  32. They are ________ the police with their inquiries. (Assist/Come)
  33. I'm on a diet. I can't eat that lovely-looking _______. (Desert/Dessert)
  34. Okay everybody, can the team leaders ______ their players? (Chose/Choose)
  35. They were so _______ people there that we got bored and went home early. (A few/Few)
  36. Where's Matthew? He's ______ to the library. (To be/To go)
  37. There's a _______ of trousers you might like in the store. (Couple/Pair)
  38. The actions of the bankers have had an enormous _______ on the lives of ordinary people.(Effect/Affect)
  39. Can you ________ to the class on Wednesday? (Assist/Come)
  40. When you were ______ to the radio, did you hear the song I was talking about? (Listen/Hear)
  41. I haven't _______ the new menu yet. (Try/Prove)
  42. The sandstorms in the _______ are making it difficult for people to grow food. (Desert/Dessert)
  43. I only saw ________ people I knew at the conference. (A few/Few)
  44. I feel very fat, I need to _______ some exercise. (Play/Do)
  45. I can't believe they want to ______ us for a product that was broken! (Cost/Charge)
  46. She _______ an umbrella just in case it rains. (Wear/Carry)
  47. One year we went skiing on a school ______.(Trip/Journey)
  48. That shirt looks a bit too ______. (Lose/Loose)
  49. They seem like ________ people. Have you known them long?(Sympathetic/Nice)
  50. My mother ______ me take that disgusting medicine when I was 5.(Make/Let)
  51. We were _____ the game by half-time, but then things picked up and we drew. (Lose/Loose)
  52. She _______ his apology for making a fool of himself. (Accept/Except)
  53. She hasn't seen her son in over 20 years. He's a _________ to her. (Foreigner/Stranger)

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54. The singer _______ designer clothes to the event. (Wear/Carry)

55. She has allergies, so the summer months ________ her health. (Effect/Affect)

56. The jeans ______ me over a hundred dollars.(Cost/Charge)

57. They ______ her handbag at the beach while she was swimming. (Rob/Steal)

58. My dad ______ me drive his car when I was 15 around our neighbourhood.(Make/Let)

59. She is _______ towards people with family problems because she had a hard childhood herself.(Sympathetic/Nice)

60. William _______ a private detective to follow his wife. (Hire/Rent)

61. The students _______ a house in Cork for 4 years. (Hire/Rent)

62. The _______ across the Atlantic used to take a long time and were often dangerous.(Trip/Journey)

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More articles by the author

ESL Fun Food Fact Quiz! Have some fun in your classroom with this zany quiz.

Great filler activity and perfect to waken up a boring class.

31. staring
32. assisting
33. dessert
34. hose
35. few
36. gone
37. pair
38. effect
39. come
40. listening
41. tried
42. desert
43. a few

44. do

45. charge

46. carries
47. trip
48. loose
49. nice
50. made
51. losing
52. accepted
53. stranger
54. wore
55. affect
56. cost
57. stole
58. let
59. sympathetic
60. hired
61. rented
62. journey

Answers


  1. known
  2. grew / raise
  3. lost
  4. learned
  5. missed
  6. formation
  7. practice
  8. borrowed
  9. Advised/Advice
  10. teach
  11. made
  12. told
  13. practise
  14. hear
  15. met
  16. playing
  17. except
  18. been
  19. doing
  20. won
  21. lend
  22. gazed
  23. chose
  24. proving
  25. couple
  26. training
  27. speak
  28. foreigners
  29. robbed
  30. earns

© 2015 Muttface

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