School and education – English idioms and sayings

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Question English
Answer English

Someone who reads a lot.
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Katy is a real bookworm, she reads several books a week.

Someone who does or says exactly the same as someone else.
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Stop wearing the same clothes as I do, don't be such a copycat!

To learn something in such a way that you can say it from memory.
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to learn something by heart
I have to learn this poem by heart for my Polish classes.

To have a bad experience.
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to learn the hard way
I learned the hard way when I worked in the UK.

To learn how to do a job.
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to learn the ropes
Before you start you have to learn the ropes.

To suffer a bad experience and know not to do it again
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to learn one's lesson
I'll never take my parents' car without permission, I learned my lesson.

Said when you hear or discover something which is surprising:
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You live and learn.
So he is a headhunter, I never knew. You live and learn.

Education one gets from life's usually negative experiences
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the School of Hard Knocks
Some people get the school of Hard Knocks instead of formal education.

A student who is ridiculed for studying excessively.
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Everybody call me a swot, but I will have the last laugh when I get the Nobel prize.

The older you are the more set in your ways you become.
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You cannot teach an old dog new tricks
I tried to teach my grandfather sending e-mails, but you can't teach an old dog new tricks.

To be the favourite pupil of the teacher.
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to be teacher's pet
My sister is a teacher's pet, she always gets the best marks.

To do something to someone, usually to punish them.
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to teach someone a lesson
He called you names?! I'll teach him a lesson!

To give advice to someone about a subject that they already know more about than you
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to teach your grandmother to suck eggs
Don't tell me how to bake, I've baked for 30 years, don't teach grandmother to suck eggs.

People who never went on to higher education often say this.
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I studied at the University of Life.
I never received a formal education, but I studied at the University of Life.

If you pass an exam with flying colours, you do it very successfully.
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with flying colours
I passed my exams with flying colours. I have seven As.

School and education – English idioms and sayings

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