5. 1 FAMILY SECRETS | IDIOMS: SECRETS

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Question English
Answer English

Read the radio programme listing. It says that society has become more "confessional". What do you think this means? Do you agree with the statement?
Father, I have sinned... I already know... (Facebook)
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It means that people are more open, that they are more likely to talk about their experiences, both good and bad.
Father, I have sinned... I already know... (Facebook)

Listen to the programme. How many secrets do they mention? What are they?
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four secrets: how much her father earned; that a girl was going out with another girl's boyfriend; accidentally telling someone what their Christmas present was; a romance with another man.

What would have made the presenter's father furious?
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His daughter telling people how much money he earned.
earn: to be paid money for your work

A girl revealed her friend's secret. Was she forgiven?
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Yes, she was.

What secret did the wife want to know from her husband?
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What her husband had bought her as a Christmas present.

Is the woman who had another relationship still married?
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Yes, she is.

What kind of secret would the author keep?
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Secrets that protect somebody or something in a way that wouldn't damage them when they ultimately find out.

We were raised in an atmosphere where families kept themselves to (1) and you told nobody your business.
Complete the sentences with the words in the box: cat stay game beans let themselves doors
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We were raised in an atmosphere where families kept themselves to themselves and you told nobody your business.
keep their affairs private

We became more knowledgeable about the kind of dangerous secrets that might be held behind closed (2), and the damage they could do.
Complete the sentences with the words in the box: cat stay game beans let themselves doors
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We became more knowledgeable about the kind of dangerous secrets that might be held behind closed doors, and the damage they could do.
confidentially

He almost (3) it slip where he was.
Complete the sentences with the words in the box: cat stay game beans let themselves doors
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He almost let it slip where he was.
reveal; To accidentally or inadvertently reveal a given secret or important piece of information.

So when should you spill the (4) and be honest?
Complete the sentences with the words in the box: cat stay game beans let themselves doors
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So when should you spill the beans and be honest?
divulge a secret

When is it better to keep/(5) schtum?
Complete the sentences with the words in the box: cat stay game beans let themselves doors
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When is it better to keep/stay schtum?
keep quiet, keep information confidential; To remain silent; to not say anything. (Used especially when by saying something, especially at the wrong time, one would cause trouble or difficulty for him- or herself.) Primarily heard in UK.

It's a secret, so try not to let the (6) out of the bag.
Complete the sentences with the words in the box: cat stay game beans let themselves doors
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It's a secret, so try not to let the cat out of the bag.
reveal

We pretended we didn't know it was her birthday, but Sam gave the (7) away.
Complete the sentences with the words in the box: cat stay game beans let themselves doors
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We pretended we didn't know it was her birthday, but Sam gave the game away.
reveal

Match the expressions with their meanings: deliberately disclose a secret
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spill the beans
she revealed a secret

when something happens in private and the public are not allowed to know about it
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behind closed doors

tell something (possibly by mistake) that someone else wanted you to keep a secret
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let it slip; let the cat out of the bag; give the game away

remain silent, or say nothing
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to keep/stay schtum

live a quiet private life, not doing things involving other people
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keep themselves to themselves

Match the phrases: This is classified information.
usually used in formal situations, e.g. government and business discussions/documents.
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These documents are confidential.
usually used in formal situations, e.g. government and business discussions/documents.

She divulged a secret.
usually used in formal situations, e.g. government and business discussions/documents.
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She blurted out the secret.

What I said is between you and me.
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It's hush-hush, so don't tell anyone.

It's a covert operation.
usually used in formal situations, e.g. government and business discussions/documents.
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This action is top secret.
usually used in formal situations, e.g. government and business discussions/documents.

She's behaving as if she has something to hide.
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She looks furtive.

What do you think of David, the new website designer? He seems really nice and (1) himself to himself.
keeps/stays
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What do you think of David, the new website designer? He seems really nice and keeps himself to himself.
keeps

Do you know what they decided during the meeting? No. That kind of information is kept firmly behind closed (2).
gates/doors
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Do you know what they decided during the meeting? No. That kind of information is kept firmly behind closed doors.
doors

I don't know if I should say. Go on. (3) the beans!
Spill/Drop
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I don't know if I should say. Go on. Spill the beans!
Spill

Do you think we should tell? No. I think it's best if we stay (4).
schtum/shut
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Do you think we should tell? No. I think it's best if we stay schtum.
schtum

Why is your sister so angry? I let (5) that she wasn't at Jo's house yesterday.
slip/lip
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Why is your sister so angry? I let slip that she wasn't at Jo's house yesterday.
slip


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