The use of idioms is essential to successful communication
in listening, speaking, reading or writing. There are no rules to be follow;
idioms must simply be memorized and used to become part of one’s working
The following idioms all have “to look” as their base.
Learn the following idioms, and then practice them in the quiz. Finally, to
really make these idioms part of your working vocabulary, write sentences
with them and ask a teacher to correct them.
1. to look at: give one’s attention, to watch The
guide at the zoo told us to look at the lion. My friend likes to look
at flowers when he goes for a walk.
2. to look for: to try to find, to search for John
spent several days looking for the perfect birthday gift for his
wife. Chang looked everywhere for his keys.
3. to look up: to locate information in a
directory, dictionary, book, etc. When Navinder was writing a report on
Mexico, she looked up information on the Internet. Sometimes
it is time consuming to look up every word you don’t know in the
4. to look out for: to be careful or cautious Be
sure to look out for deer on the highway when you are driving at
5. to look over: to examine, to inspect closely
Always look over your notes before a test. The lawyer
looked over the contract to see if there were any errors.
6. to look into: to investigate, to examine
carefully The government is going to look into the cost
overruns. I will look into the matter of the missing pets
7. to look up to: to admire, to respect greatly
Many people look up to Nelson Mandela. Often children
look up to their older brothers and sisters.
8. to look out on: to face, to overlook The cabin
looks out on a beautiful green lake. When the children
are playing in the backyard, their mother often looks out
on them to make sure they are not getting into trouble.
Try the To Look Quiz
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