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Introduction to Food

Introduction to Food

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Requirements

Introduction to Food

 

Hello! In this lesson, we will learn how to discuss meals and food. We will learn the names of the main meals and daily vocabulary related to meals. We will learn the names of a few common foods and drinks, and we will review some verbs and learn a new verb connected with eating and drinking.  We will also use the preposition "for" in several contexts.
The three main "meals" of the day are "breakfast", which we eat in the morning, "lunch", which we eat at midday, and "dinner", the main meal which we eat in the evening. In some regions and households where people eat their main meal at midday, the midday meal is sometimes called "dinner", and the evening meal is called "supper".
We say that we "eat breakfast, eat lunch," and "eat dinner", or we "have breakfast", "have lunch", and "have dinner.". We "have" a certain food "for breakfast", "for lunch", or "for dinner".  For example, we might say "This morning Jennifer is having eggs and toast for breakfast.". We could also say "Jennifer is eating eggs and toast for breakfast.". In this context, "having" means "eating" or "drinking". We might say "David is having a sandwich and coffee for lunch." and "Jennifer and David are having beef and rice for supper.".
We also talk about smaller amounts of food. For example, we might say "Jennifer did not have lunch yesterday, so she had a snack in the afternoon.". A snack might be "a candy bar", "an apple", or some potato chips." A snack is not a meal.
Now that you know the names of the main meals, let us listen to this dialog. Jennifer and David are discussing the day's meals.

David: You did not eat breakfast this morning.
Jennifer: No, I had a snack at 10:00.
David: Did you have lunch?
Jennifer: No, I was not hungry for lunch.
David: Oh – you had a snack at 10:00.
Jennifer: And I snacked all afternoon.
David: What are we having for dinner?
Jennifer:  I am not hungry for dinner.
David: You snacked all afternoon and now you are not hungry.

Now that you have learned the basic vocabulary for meals, let us look at the sentences more carefully.

At first, David says, "You did not eat breakfast this morning.". Since "eat breakfast" is synonymous with "have breakfast", David might also have said "You did not have breakfast this morning.". If David were asking whether Jennifer had eaten breakfast, he could have said "Did you eat breakfast this morning?" or "Did you have breakfast this morning?".
Jennifer responds "No, I had a snack at 10:00.". Notice that Jennifer says "no" to David's statement "You did not eat breakfast this morning.".In English, we agree to or disagree with the truth of the matter itself rather than to the statement about the matter. It is true that Jennifer did not have breakfast, so she responds to the root idea, which is whether or not she had breakfast. Jennifer could also have named the food she ate at 10:00 by saying "I had an apple at 10:00." or "I had a cookie at 10:00.".But she would have caused tremendous confusion if she had responded "yes" to David's statement that she did not eat breakfast.
David then asks "Did you have lunch?".  He could also have asked "Did you eat lunch?".
Jennifer answers "No, I was not hungry for lunch.". The expression "hungry for" is very common. We might sometimes say "I am hungry for pie." or "I am hungry for a roast beef sandwich.". Jennifer was not "hungry for lunch".  We can also use the expression "thirsty for", for example "Jennifer is thirsty for some water." or "David is very thirsty for a soda.".   
David replies "Oh – you had a snack at 10:00.", to which Jennifer responds "And I snacked all afternoon.". Notice that the noun "snack" can also turn into a verb. In David's statement "You had a snack at 10:00.", the word "snack" is a noun. In Jennifer's comment "And I snacked all afternoon.", the word "snacked" is a verb. This means that the activity of snacking lasted for a long time, she ate small amounts all afternoon.
David then asks "What are we having for dinner?".David's question is in the present progressive tense. We learned in an earlier lesson that this tense can refer to the near future, as it does in David's question. He might also have asked "What are we eating for dinner?". Notice that David uses the prepositional phrase "for dinner" to discuss the food that they will eat at the evening meal.
Jennifer says "I am not hungry for dinner.". This statement is similar to Jennifer's earlier statement that she was not "hungry for lunch". It means that she does not have a desire for that meal.
David wraps up the conversation by stating "You snacked all afternoon, and now you are not hungry.". He used the verb "snacked" again. When he says "You snacked all afternoon", he implies a progressive sense of the activity – that she did not stop and start snacking, rather that snacking was her ongoing activity throughout the afternoon.  And now Jennifer is "not hungry". David could also have said "you are not hungry for dinner." .
Now that you have learned the usages of these words, listen to the dialog again. Listen for "have" and "eat" as they are used for a meal. Listen for the preposition "for" when it is used in the expressions "for breakfast", "for lunch", and "for dinner".  And listen for the expression "hungry for".
David: You did not eat breakfast this morning.
Jennifer: No, I had a snack at 10:00.
David: Did you have lunch?
Jennifer: No, I was not hungry for lunch.
David: Oh – you had a snack at 10:00.
Jennifer: And I snacked all afternoon.
David: What are we having for dinner?
Jennifer:  I am not hungry for dinner.
David: You snacked all afternoon and now you are not hungry.

Excellent! You have learned the basics of discussing meals in English. In future lessons, we will build on this information to talk more about mealtime and food. Your skills are increasing and you are becoming socially conversant in English. Practice your new skills in your conversations in English.