This is a re-post of one of our first blog posts. It's one of my favourites and I know most readers haven't seen it yet as it's more than a year old. I hope you enjoy it! Please watch the videos as well - the first one is filmed within a school we've worked with for a few years and you will learn plenty just by watching it.
After teaching in London for a few months, you'll quickly learn the lingo of Londoners and particularly the slang of the children.
Here's a handy little list of words you need to know to make it through your first week anyway.
British Term – Canadian Term
Alright? How are you? (note that this is a rhetorical question and you'll get strange looks if you actually start saying how you are!)
asbo – anti-social behaviour order
bird – girl or chick
cash point – ATM or cash machine
chav – equivalent to “trailer park trash” - not PC but you're bound to hear it
cinema – movie theatre
cuppa- cup of tea
dinner – lunch
fag – cigarette
fancy dress – costume party
fringe – bangs (hair)
gutted – sad
local – pub (as in “Meet me at my local”)
mate/s – friend/s
minger – ugly
over the moon – pleased or happy
pants – underwear (can also be used as a negative adjective, as in “my job is really pants”)
pudding – dessert
shattered/knackered – very tired
snog – kissing
subway – underground path (allows you to cross from one side of the road to the other)
take-away – take-out or food to go
traffic warden – meter maid/man
trainers – sneakers, running shoes
trousers – pants
tube – subway train
rubbish bin – garbage can
pavement – sidewalk
vest – tank top
The above list is taken from Living in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians, written by Network Canada.
Here, we've added a few more words for Canadian teachers in London:
register – attendance
rubber - eraser
break – recess
holiday – vacation
“cussing my____” (fill in the blank with Mum, or name, or mate...) - making fun of, putting down
innit – isn't it?
football – soccer
taking the mick (or mickey) – making fun of (teens and adults might say “taking the piss” instead)
chuffed – happy, excited
to pull or to be pulled – to pick up or get picked up (at a bar/club)
corridor - hallway
Head Teacher - principal
Deputy Head Teacher - vice-principal
SENCO - Special Needs Coordinator
Key Stage (1, 2, 3, 4) - primary, junior, intermediate, senior
Early Years (Nursery & Reception) - Junior Kindergarten, Senior Kindergarten
Hall - gymnasium (usually also where the children eat lunch in primary schools)
Jumper - sweater
Can you think of any more that we've forgotten? Please add them to our comments.
If you'd like to become part of the Classroom Canada team, please sign up for our newsletters & apply through our website. Be sure to read the Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians to help you understand everything you need to know about teaching in London.