Are you wondering what Marvin Gaye has to do with teaching English? Good! Keep reading.
My upper level students study idioms "expressionwhosemeaningisnotpredictablefromtheusual meaningsofitsconstituentelements,orfromthegeneralgrammaticalrulesofalanguage."
One common idiom is "I heard it through the grapevine", which means: To hear something through the grapevine is to learn of something informally and unofficially by means of gossip or rumor. The usual implication is that the information was passed person to person by word of mouth, perhaps in a confidential manner among friends or colleagues.
When I hear this idiom, I can't help but think of Marvin Gaye and this song, although I know it was recorded by others too. I love idioms, but I know they are difficult for my students. Idioms just don't make sense!
Do you have a favorite English idiom or one you just hate?