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Vocabulary Quiz
fairly • pretty much • tragic
haven't spoken
  1. The characters he plays in movies are always so .
  2. It is warm out today, considering it is winter.
  3. She is fluent in French.
  4. I to him since our big fight.
Comprehension Quiz
Answer the following questions about the interview.
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613 Meet the Family
Shuan talks about his family back in Canada.

  • Transcript
  • Audio Notes
Vocabulary notes (text only) explain key vocabulary and phrases from the interview.


I have a fairly small family.

Here, 'fairly' can be replaced with 'pretty' or 'kind of.' It  means that the family is not really small, but it is moderately small. Notice the following:

  1. The weather is fairly good today.
  2. Out new house is fairly small, but it's the perfect size for our little family.

pretty much

My father is pretty much the most interesting person I think I know.

'Pretty much' can be replaced by 'basically.' Notice the following:

  1. Spaghetti is pretty much her favorite food.
  2. He is pretty much self-employed.


It was kind of tragic, but five years ago, my father had a heart attack.

Something 'tragic' is extremely sad or disastrous. Notice the following:

  1. The story of his life is so tragic.
  2. The end of that book is so completely tragic that it made me cry.

I haven't spoken to her

I haven't spoken to her lately, so I don't know what she's doing.

If you 'haven't spoken to someone' lately, it means that you haven't been in contact with that person in the recent past. Notice the following:

  1. We haven't spoken to them in a while, so I didn't know that all of that happened.
  2. I haven't spoken to her yet, but I'm sure that she'll want to come to the concert.