ESL Phrasal Verbs

Explanations of several "make" phrasal verbs, with a printable worksheet.

click here to download this ESL phrasal verbs worksheet (FREE!)

 

"Make" Phrasal Verbs - Definitions

make up: to reconcile; when two people forgive each other after a fight or disagreement

  • John and his wife had a big argument last night, but they eventually made up.
  • You and Jessica need to make up. You shouldn’t let one argument ruin your friendship!

make (x) up: to invent a story, to use your imagination to say something that isn’t true or    real

  • My daughter likes to make up stories about her invisible friend.
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make out: when two people kiss for a long time

  • The two students got caught making out in the janitor’s closet at school.


make (x) out: to be able to see something clearly

  • This newspaper is too old. I can’t even make out what the headline says.
  • This student’s writing is too small. Can you make this word out?

 

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make do (with): to accept or use something that is not what you really want, because you can’t have the thing that you really want; to accept what you have, because it’s good enough

  • I don’t have any more pens. You’ll have to make do with a pencil.
  • My father lost his job last week. I guess we’ll just have to make do with less this Christmas.

 

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make (A) into (B): to change one thing (A) into another thing (B)

  • I can’t believe you made that old log into such a beautiful guitar!
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make over (noun or verb): To change or improve one’s appearance

  • Julia went to the salon and got a complete makeover. I barely recognized her!
  • On this TV show, they make over housewives to look like models!

 

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make off (with): to steal and get away; to escape with something stolen

  • The bank robber made off with over one million dollars!
 

"Make" Phrasal Verbs - Worksheet

Fill in the blanks with the correct words to complete these “make” phrasal verbs.
 

1. Mark: I wish we lived in a bigger house!
Mom: Well, Mark. We can’t afford a bigger house right now. We’ll just have to ______________ with the house we have.

2. Sarah and her boyfriend sat in the back of the movie theater and ___________ during the whole movie. They wasted their money on a movie ticket, because
they didn’t even see the movie!

3. Ever since Anne had a baby, she hasn’t had time to buy clothes or worry about
her appearance. So I’m going to get her a _______________ for her birthday!

4. That’s it! You two have been fighting long enough! I want you both to sit in this
room, and you can’t come out until you’ve _______________.

5. Dad: Why don’t you want to throw away that old shirt?
Jake: I’m going to cut off the sleeves and ________________ a tank top so I
can wear it this summer!

6. Bernie Madoff was sent to jail, but not before he _______________ millions of
dollars and caused many people to lose their life savings

7. An international team of archaeologists is working to _______________ the
words on the recently discovered stone tablet from Egypt.

8. Bill: John said that his parents are going to give him a new car!
Brian: Don’t listen to him. He’s always ________ things _______. You can’t
believe anything he says.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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ESL Phrasal Verbs

Explanations of several "stick" phrasal verbs, with a printable worksheet.

click here to download this ESL phrasal verbs worksheet (FREE!)

 

“Stick” Phrasal Verbs - Definitions

 

stick around: to stay around; to stay in a place for awhile

  • You can go ahead and go home if you’re tired. I’ll probably stick around for a few more minutes.
     

 

stick by / stick with: to stay with someone or give them support in a difficult time; to stay with a story, plan, or opinion and refuse to change it.

 

  • Friends are the people who stick by you even in the worst of times.
  • Even though the police had evidence that he was guilty, Sean stuck by his story and refused to confess.
  • The president stuck by (stuck with) his policies, even though most of the population was against them.
  • Telemarketers are usually told to stick with their scripts because they tend to make more sales that way.

 


stick out (also: stand out, “stick out like a sore thumb”): If something “sticks out”, it is easily noticeable (because it is strange, big, or better than the rest, for example)

  • At the music festival, a few bands really stuck out and made an impression.
  • Stanley always sticks out in a crowd because he is over 7 feet tall.

 


stick up for: to support or defend someone

  • That was so nice of you to stick up for me when the teacher accused me of cheating!

 


stick together: To support and defend friends/colleagues, to remain loyal (similar to “sticking by” someone)

  • Policemen always stick together and never turn each other in*.

*turn (x) in = to report someone to the police for committing a crime
 

“Stick” Phrasal Verbs - Worksheet

Fill in the blanks with the correct words to complete these “stick” phrasal verbs.
 

1. When the baseball player was accused of cheating, his coach ______________
him in the press and insisted that the player was innocent.


2. I know you don’t like teaching English, Brian, but if you _______________ for
three more years, you will be able to pay off all of your student loans!


3. Companies try to design catchy brand logos so their products will ___________ among all the other similar products.


4. Pat: I think that road is a shortcut. We might be able to save some time.

Penny: We’re not in a hurry. Let’s just _______________ the map.


5. Ethel and Edgar have been married for over 50 years. They have ____________ through good times and bad times, through thick and thin.


6. Zack: We should go to school! We’re going to be late!

Mike: It’s OK. When the teacher asks why we’re late, we’ll say we got a flat tire.
If we both ______________ the story, we won’t get into trouble.

 


7.    An international team of archaeologists is working to _______________ the
words on the recently discovered stone tablet from Egypt.


8.    Bill: John said that his parents are going to give him a new car!
Brian: Don’t listen to him. He’s always ________ things _______. You can’t
believe anything he says.

 

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ESL Phrasal Verbs

Printable worksheet reviewing phrasal verbs with the words "make", "stick", and "pull".

click here to download this ESL phrasal verbs worksheet (FREE!)

 

make

off

out

up

stick

over

do

for

pull

ahead

around

together

 

 

Choose one word from the left, and one word from the right, to complete each sentence.


1. When the other kids were picking on me, my friends __________ up __________
me.

2. People in poor countries often cannot afford food and have to simply __________ __________ with whatever food they can find.

3. Good friends __________ __________ even when times are tough.

4. I don’t have my glasses, so I can’t __________ __________ the words on the
chalkboard.

5. Teacher: Johnny, could you please __________ __________ after class? I need to
have a word with you.

6. Stop yelling! You’ve got to __________ yourself __________! This is no time to
panic!

7. Wow, I didn’t think I would be able to pass that test. I can’t believe I __________ it __________!

8. Bill and Melissa had a big argument last night. They still haven’t ________ ________, so they’re not talking to each other right now.

9. When you go to Taipei, you will notice that Taipei 101 really __________ __________ because it is much taller than all the other buildings.

10. John Smith was behind in most of the polls before the election, but in the last few days he managed to __________ __________ of his opponent and win the election.

11. The young couple was caught __________ __________ last night in the park. A police officer noticed them and told them to go home.

12. The thief __________ ____________ with my diamond ring, but not before I wrote down his license plate number.

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ESL Phrasal Verbs

Explanations of several "pull" phrasal verbs, with a printable worksheet.

click here to download this ESL phrasal verbs worksheet (FREE!)

 

“Pull” Phrasal Verbs - Definitions

pull ahead: to move in the lead, to move ahead of the other people (in a race or contest, for example)

· The two drivers were neck in neck* for most of the race, and it wasn’t until the very end that one of them pulled ahead and won.

 

pull for: to support or cheer for a person/team

  • Most people were pulling for New Orleans to win the Super Bowl because they were the underdogs.
  • Even though I don’t really care about the Winter Olympics, I’m pulling for Canada to beat the US in the hockey championship because I’m Canadian.
 

pull (x) off: to accomplish something difficult

  • I couldn’t believe it! New Orleans pulled off the upset and won the Super Bowl!
  • Even though Canada was favored to beat the US, they weren’t able to pull it off and lost 2-1.
 

pull (x) over: to drive your car to the side of the road and stop (when a police officer turns on his/her lights, for example)

  • What’s that noise? Quick! Pull over! I think you have a flat tire!
  • The cop pulled me over because my tail light was out.
 

pull up: to drive your car (slowly) forward (when parking or stopping at a place, for example)

  • You’re not in the parking space yet. You need to pull up a little more.
  • If you don’t want to go inside the restaurant, you can just pull up to the drive-through window.
 

pull yourself together!: to calm down and stop panicking (you say this when someone is crying, yelling, or very scared, for example)

· I know you’re sad about breaking up with your girlfriend, but it’s already been
several weeks. You need to pull yourself together and get on with your life.
There are plenty of fish in the sea!*

 



*neck in neck = tied, very close to each other
*plenty of fish in the sea = many other suitable girlfriends/boyfriends

 

“Pull” Phrasal Verbs - Worksheet

Fill in the blanks with the correct words to complete these “pull” phrasal verbs.
 

1. Patrick (at a fast food restaurant): I’d like two hamburgers, medium fries, and a
small cola.

Clerk: That’s two hamburgers, medium fries, and a small cola. Your total is
$2.59. Please _______________ to the next window.


2. Wendy: Good luck at the tennis tournament this afternoon. We’ll all be in the
stands cheering and _______________ you to win!


3. Evan: You should slow down, Todd. There are a lot of police on this road. You
don’t want to get _________________.


4. Russia and Canada were tied in the Winter Olympics medal count with 20
medals each. However, after winning the skiing event, Russia _____________
and now has 21.


5. The Lakers were down by 20 points at the beginning of the fourth quarter, yet
they still managed to _______________ a victory, thanks to Kobe Bryant, who
scored 16 points in just 3 minutes.


6. Bill: Ahhhh! There’s a fire!!!!! Oh no!!!!! Wahhhhhh!!!!

Jane: Hey! You’ve got to ____________________! If we panic, we’ll never get
out of here. Quick, follow me out the fire escape!

 

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ESL Phrasal Verbs

Explanations of several "hold" phrasal verbs, with a printable worksheet.

click here to download this ESL phrasal verbs worksheet (FREE!)

 

“Hold” Phrasal Verbs - Definitions

hold (it) against (someone): to ‘hold a grudge’; to stay angry at someone for a long time because of something they did in the past; to blame someone and stay angry at them.

· I know you’re angry that the police officer gave you a ticket, but don’t hold it against him. He was just doing his job.

· Craig said some really mean things to me on Saturday night, but he was under a lot of stress, so I guess I shouldn’t hold it against him.

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hold (x) down: to keep a job

  • Brett has always struggled with addiction. He has never been able to hold down a job for more than a month or two.
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hold on (or: hang on): to wait briefly; to “wait a minute”

  • Hold on! I’m talking on the phone right now. I’ll talk to you in a minute.
  • I’ll help you with your homework after I finish making dinner. Just hold on a few minutes.
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hold out (for): to continue resisting; to continue waiting for something; to refuse to reach an agreement with someone for an extended amount of time (you use “for” when you want to say “why” someone is holding out—for more money, for a better option, etc.)

  • The striking workers are holding out for higher wages. They refuse to return to work until their demands are met.
  • The baseball star is refusing to sign a contract with his team. He is holding out for more money.
  • I want to buy that new computer, but I think I will hold out until the price comes down a little.
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hold up (or: stick up): to steal money from a person, business or bank, usually with a weapon (gun, knife, etc.)

  • The criminal was sent to jail for 10 years for holding up the convenience store.
· I was held up at knifepoint (or gunpoint) last night! It was the most terrifying experience of my life!
 

“Hold” Phrasal Verbs - Worksheet

Fill in the blanks with the correct words to complete these “hold” phrasal verbs.
 

1. I don’t think I’m going to renew my contract with the company yet. I think I
deserve more money. I know it’s a bit risky ___________________ for more
money, but it’s a risk I’m willing to take.


2. Pat: We’re going to go to the beach now.

David: I just have to write two more sentences in this paper. If you guys can
_______________ for two minutes, I’ll go with you.


3. Lilian: What will you do if you lose your job? Do you have anything to fall back
on?

Jeff: No, I don’t have a college degree, and I don’t have much work experience. I
don’t know what I’ll do. Maybe I’ll ________________ a convenience store!

Lilian: That’s not funny!


4. Last week I made a stupid joke about Claire’s weight when she was talking to
the guy she likes. She’s still mad at me. I don’t think she’ll ever forgive me.
She’s going to ________ that _________ me for the rest of my life!


5. My mom said that if I can prove that I’m responsible enough to
_______________ a job for one year, she’ll buy me a car.


6. Everyone else in the class has agreed to pay $5 to go on the field trip, but Beth
still hasn’t agreed. Why is she _______________?

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