do a change? or make a change?

do a speech? or make a speech?

ESL learners often confuse the two. The general rule of thumb is:

  • we use ‘do’ with activities we do, conduct, execute
  • we use ‘make’ with things we ‘create’ or construct.
Do you confuse 'do' and 'make'? Let’s simplify it (+Bonus exercises) Simplifying English
Ok- that’s fine, but is a ‘confession’ created or executed?
what about a joke? is a research done or created?

OK! take a deep breathe! I’ve put the loooong list of phrases in categories that’ll make it easy to remember!

Let’s talk about money! here are money related things we ‘make':

  • money
  • a profit
  • a loss
  • a fortune
  • a living

Stuff we that ’say’, we ‘make'

  • a point
  • a prediction
  • a comment
  • a complaint
  • a confession
  • a suggestion
  • amends
  • a speech
  • a joke

the outcome of a thought process is something we ‘make'

  • a decision
  • a discovery
  • a difference
  • a change
  • a plan
  • a mistake
  • an error
  • an excuse
  • an exception
  • an arrangement

‘make' exceptions

  • fun of
  • a move
  • friends
  • an impression
  • a fuss
  • a mess
  • a fool
  • an appointment
  • a phone call
  • noise
  • payment

And here are some activities we execute or 'do'

  • tasks/chores
  • the laundry
  • dishes
  • business
  • a course
  • a crossword
  • a puzzle
  • exercise
  • an exercise
  • shopping
  • research
  • a job


We make:

  • stuff we create or construct
  • money related
  • outcome of a thought process
  • stuff we 'say'

We do:

  1. activities we excecute or conduct


Do you confuse 'do' and 'make'? Let’s simplify it (+Bonus exercises) Simplifying English

👉10 Reasons Why English Learners should Slow Down when Speaking

👉Small Talk at Work like a Pro: Tips & phrases when English is your Second Language

👉Are you using Reflexive Pronouns correctly?

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