the learning english PODCAST

Master the nuances of the English language

Explore the subtleties of English with expert teacher, Helen. Learn on the go or with focused attention and improve your command of the language in an enjoyable and effective way.

Season 1: Conversation with...

A series of conversations between Helen and non-native English speakers on an array of engaging topics. Put yourself in the guests’ shoes and learn from Helen’s guidance on grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation and notable phrases. Each episode is divided into two parts:

A ten-minute discussion on the topic of the day with in-conversation corrections and explanations from Helen.

An exploration and clarification of key language points from the conversation.

Access supplementary materials

Each episode comes with supplementary materials that delve deeper into the themes covered. You can download the supplementary materials for €3.25 per episode or €18.75 for all episodes (incl. VAT). The supplementary materials are available for Episode 1 free of charge.


Javier from Colombia on accents

Helen and Javier Alfonso Gomez Chavarro talk about the wide variety of British accents.

01:21 What is a Brummie accent?

01:56  Find out why Javier wants a Brummie accent

02:44  Learn vowel sound differences between the north and south of England

06:07  “Been to” versus “gone to”

08:02  Test your knowledge of UK regional nicknames

12:41  “Lilt”

13:03  “Pick up” and other phrasal verbs

18:46  “Be/get used to

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Ira from Russia on language & culture

Helen and Ira talk about a shared love of language and culture. This episode was recorded before the war in Ukraine, so that is not discussed.

01:13  Do Russians use small talk?

04:38  Is Russian a beautiful language?

07:02  Literature and Dostoevsky

07:55  Intriguing complexity of Russian names

12:23  “Do” and “did” in positive sentences for emphasis

15:33  “Subtle” and the silent B

17:28  “Broaden your horizons” and other idioms

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Navin from the Netherlands on Suriname

Helen and Navin Boeddha talk about the little-known country, Suriname.

01:09  Where is Suriname?

02:06  Where do people guess it is: Africa, Asia or South America?

03:49  Suriname’s ethnic mix

05:31  Navin’s family history from India to Suriname to the Netherlands

09:49  A funny stereotype

10:51  Suriname’s dancing culture

12:54  Indirect questions/statements

15:46  Past perfect

17:11  Idiom: “melting pot”

18:35  Structure with “recommend”

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Adriana from Spain on engineering

Helen and Adriana Renedo talk about the magic of engineering. 

01:03  Why engineering?

06:42  What Adriana built for the Chillida Leku Museum and how she created the magic

11:42  Pronunciation: “choose – chose – chosen” and “choice”

12:30  Indirect questions/statements

15:46  Phrasal verb: “throw away”

16:28  Pronunciation: words ending -age

18:06  Useful phrasal verbs: “get by” and “give up” 

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Julie from Belgium on nursing

Helen and Julie Vanhaeren talk about a new adventure into nursing. 

01:14  Why Julie decided to become a nurse

04:04  COVID and nursing homes

06:58  Was nursing what you expected?

07:33  Real life emergencies

08:52  Most challenging and best things

10:45  Past perfect & past perfect continuous

16:33  “Furlough”

17:29  Suffix: “-wise”

18:17  “Did’ for emphasis

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Danilo from Colombia on fitness

Helen and Danilo Ramirez talk about the world of fitness. 

01:07/09:19  “The” or no “the”? That is the question!   

01:52  Body image and self-esteem

04:48  Pronunciation: “guidance”

06:38  Injuries

11:42  Phrasal verb: “get rid of” 

13:51  Nouns as adjectives

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Fernando from Argentina on squash

Helen and Fernando Louge talk about the dynamic sport of squash. 

01:02  What is squash?

03:14/16:40  “Do sport” versus “practise sport”

03:35  Squash in Argentina

04:44  Egyptian players

05:10  Fernando’s injury

07:55  Squash as a spectator sport

10:46  Second conditional and “If you were to…”

14:57  “Ricochet” and silent T

18:02  Past modal verbs: “could have…”, “would have…”, “should have…” 

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Tímea from Hungary on digital nomads

Helen and Tímea Pintye talk about the lifestyle of a digital nomad. 

00:50  What is a digital nomad?

01:58  Argentina’s similarities to Europe

04:08  How to become a digital nomad

06:35  Highlights of Tímea’s travels

11:48  Present perfect

13:00  Future tenses: “going to” versus “present continuous”

15:36  Be/get used to

16:30  Phrasal verbs: “set up” and “switch off”

18:41  Third conditional

19:19  Inverted third conditional


If you’d like to follow Tímea and her travels, you can find her on Instagram at: timea_pintye

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Over 15 years' experience teaching students to master English

I am a native British qualified English teacher with over fifteen years’ experience of inspiring students from around the world to perfect their English.

This podcast is my desire to share my knowledge and expertise with English learners who aspire to communicate more effectively in the world’s shared language.

English with Helen is aimed at learners from pre-intermediate to advanced. You will hone your instincts to accurately self-correct and learn to think like a native English speaker.

I am learning Russian and Spanish so understand being in the position of the language learner. This helps me to create the most effective ways to communicate the English language.

Get in touch

If you have any questions or comments, please get in touch.


Valencia - Spain