Using Collocation to Boost Your IELTS Score – Key Word: a sign of

a sign of

1          Verb + sign of

Use the correct form of these verbs:

find                  see                   show

  1. The tyres on my car are beginning to _____________ signs of wear. I’ll need to replace them soon.
  2. We must stick to our original plan. Any change of policy will be _____________as a sign of weakness.
  3. The detectives searched the house from top to bottom, but they _____________ no sign of the stolen goods.

2          (Be) a sign of

Match the two halves of these sentences:

  1. A fall in unemployment is one sign of
  2. Spelling words incorrectly is a common sign of
  3. A heavy, dark sky is a sign of
  4. Admitting you’ve made a mistake is a sign of
  5. Sore muscles and a headache are usually the first signs of
  6. People say that being a good pool player is usually a sign of

a          rain.

b          strength, not weakness.

c          a growing economy.

d          dyslexia.

e          a misspent youth!

f           the flu.

3          Sign of + noun

Complete the sentences with these words:

having             improvement               trouble

times                giving in                      emotion

  1. She’s such a cold fish. I have rarely seen her display any sign of _____________ .
  2. At last, her work is showing some signs of _____________.
  3. The police have shown no signs of_____________ to the kidnappers’ demands.
  4. I’m afraid she’s showing the first signs of _____________ the disease. We’ll need to start treatment.
  5. Make sure you call the police at the first sign of _____________ .
  6. Rising crime is just a sign of the _____________ !


Ex 1: l. show 2.seen 3.found

Ex 2: l-c           2-d      3-a       4-b       5-f       6-e

Ex 3: 1. emotion      2. improvement     3. giving in     4. having    5. trouble   6. times

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