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lingua house

TM

Innovation in Learning

PRACTICAL ENGLISH

Apologies, excuses and promises


Lesson code: HD3F-DQAB-AQF2-R

INTERMEDIATE

1 When you do something wrong...


Match the phrases to their correct definitions:
1. apologize for something
2. forgive somebody for something
3. make an excuse
4. blame somebody for something

a. to feel sorry or disappointed about something that you wish


could be different
b. to give a reason to explain why you did something wrong
c. to make something clearer and easier to understand by giving
more details about it
d. to say that you are sorry for something

5. explain something

e. to say/think that a particular person is responsible for


something bad or wrong that happened

6. regret something

f. to stop being angry with someone for something they have


done

Now complete the sentences below with words from above:


1. Don't

Tom for the mistake. It wasn't his fault.

2. What

did he make for not doing his homework?

3. I

not finishing school. I could have a much better job now.

4. I

for my lateness. The traffic was just awful.


why she was so late for work.

5. Daniela's boss asked her to


6. Will you

me for forgetting your name again?

2 Listening
Listen to six mini-dialogues and put the dialogue number next to the appropriate situation below:
a. The speaker makes an excuse.
b. The speaker promises to do something.
c. The speaker makes a formal apology.
d. The speaker is forgiven.

1/3

c
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e. The speaker is not forgiven.

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lingua house

Apologies, excuses and promises


A

TM

Innovation in Learning

PRACTICAL ENGLISH

3 Apologies and excuses


Complete the conversation with the expressions in the box. Listen again to check your answers.
OK
never

afraid
should

happen
sincerely

keep
unacceptable

matter
worry

Dialogue 1
A: Sorry I'm late. I was held up at the airport.
B: That's OK . I've just arrived myself.
Dialogue 2
A: I apologize for my behaviour. I was under a lot of stress.
2

B:

mind. I understand.

Dialogue 3
3

A: Sorry to
5

B: Don't

you waiting. It won't

again.

about it.

Dialogue 4
A: I really am sorry about this problem.
6

B: I

think so too! What you did was completely

Dialogue 5
A: Sorry about spilling coffee on your floor. I'll get a mop.
8

B: Oh, it doesn't

. The cleaning lady will clean it up later.

Dialogue 6
A: We

B: I'm

10

apologize for the late delivery.


that's not good enough! I expect some sort of discount.

Now complete the structures for apologizing with `noun or verb -ing', `infinitive' and `SUBJECT + verb':
(be) sorry about +
(be) sorry to +
(be) sorry +
apologize for +

2/3

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Study the responses to the apologies in the dialogues. Which expressions are used for accepting an
apology? Which expressions are used for not accepting an apology?

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Apologies, excuses and promises


A

lingua house

TM

Innovation in Learning

PRACTICAL ENGLISH

4 Promising action
Look at the dialogues again and study the expressions that the speakers use for promising action.
What structure is used?
Now match the following promises to the apologies below them:
1. I'll buy you a new one.
2. I'll give you a ring first thing tomorrow.
3. I'll clean it up.
4. I'll pay for the damage.
5. I won't forget to bring it next time.
6. I will make sure to contact you if it happens again.
a. I apologize for breaking your window.
b. I apologize for not informing you about the change of lesson time.
c. I'm sorry - I left your dictionary at home.
d. I'm sorry for not calling you today.
e. Sorry about the mess I made in your kitchen.
f. Sorry for losing the CD you lent me.

5 Role play
In pairs, practise the following situations. In each case, one student decides if the other student should
be forgiven or not.
1. Student A: You borrowed and lost Student B's coursebook. Apologize and promise action.
2. Student B: You didn't arrive for a meeting that you had arranged with Student A. Apologize and make
an excuse.
3. Student A: You saw Student B at a party but you didn't say hello. Apologize and make an excuse.
4. Student B: You accidentally stepped on Student B's mobile phone and damaged it. Apologize, make
an excuse and promise action.

6 Flashcard review
Don't forget the words and phrases from today's lesson! Go to www.linguahouse.com/ex and enter
Lesson code: HD3F-DQAB-AQF2-R

3/3

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You can review our worksheets online. Lesson code: HD3F-DQAB-AQF2-R

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Use Expemo often if you want to remember all the new language from your lessons.

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Apologies, excuses and promises - Transcripts


A

lingua house

TM

Innovation in Learning

PRACTICAL ENGLISH

2- Listening

Dialogue 1
A: Sorry I'm late. I was held up at the airport.
B: That's OK. I've just arrived myself.
Dialogue 2
A: I apologize for my behaviour. I was under a lot of stress.
B: Never mind. I understand.
Dialogue 3
A: Sorry to keep you waiting. It won't happen again.
B: Don't worry about it.
Dialogue 4
A: I really am very sorry about this problem.
B: I should think so too! What you did was completely unacceptable.
Dialogue 5
A: Sorry about spilling coffee on your floor. I'll get a mop.
B: Oh, it doesn't matter. The cleaning lady will clean it up later.

c
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Dialogue 6
A: We sincerely apologize for the late delivery.
B: I'm afraid that's not good enough! I expect some sort of discount.

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lingua house

Apologies, excuses and promises - Key


A

TM

Innovation in Learning

PRACTICAL ENGLISH

1- When you do something wrong...

1. d

2. f

3. b

4. e

5. c

6. a

1. blame

2. excuse

3. regret

4. apologize

5. explain

6. forgive

2- Listening
Students can work alone and check in pairs. Play the audio file or use your mobile device to scan the QR code
(make sure you have installed a QR code reader app and can access the Internet on your device).

a.
b.
c.
d.
e.

1,2,5
3,5,6
2,6
1,2,3,5
4,6

3- Apologies and excuses

2. never
7. unacceptable

3. keep
8. matter

4. happen
9. sincerely

5. worry
10. afraid

6. should

(be) sorry about + noun or verb -ing


(be) sorry to + infinitive
(be) sorry + subject + verb
apologize for + noun or verb -ing
Point out or have the students discover the formal expression of apology in Dialogue 6 (`apologize for'). Also point
out that the structure `sorry for + verb -ing' is possible.

ACCEPTING AN APOLOGY: That's all right; Never mind; Don't worry about it; It doesn't matter.
NOT ACCEPTING AN APOLOGY: I should think so too!; I'm afraid that's not good enough.
4- Promising action
`will/won't' + infinitive is used for promising to do something.

6- Flashcard review

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You can review our worksheets online. Lesson code: HD3F-DQAB-AQF2-R

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Students who register on our website can revise the material from this lesson using the Expemo spaced repetition
learning platform. Visit www.linguahouse.com/ex for more information.

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