Learn English with English, baby!

Join for FREE!

have the chops

have the chops

Date: Nov 12 2009

Themes: Work


1. Quote - Listen to the quote and guess what the slang means.

Go Super to Listen Go Super!

“There are a thousand girls out there that have great acting chops and are pretty…Someone else could take my place.”

- Actress Kristen Bell on her competition. (US Weekly)


1. Definition - Study the definition.

Go Super to Listen Go Super!

have the necessary ability; be very skilled at something

2. Use - Learn how the slang is used.

Go Super to Listen Go Super!

If you want to be great at something, you’ve got to have the chops. No, we’re not talking about the length of your sideburns. If you want to achieve fame and glory by being amazing at something, you have to have great skill—or chops.

Chops is slang for the jaws or mouth. Trumpet players need to have strong jaws if they want to become better players, so people used to say that you couldn’t become a great trumpet player if you didn’t have the chops for it. Later the expression came to mean the ability to play any instrument, not just the trumpet. And now we use chops to talk about any skill or ability.

To be a good painter, for instance, you have to have good painting chops. And to be a good actor, you have to have good acting chops. Kristen Bell has roles on two TV shows, Heroes and Gossip Girl, and she’s one of the stars of the new movie Couples Retreat. But she doesn’t think there’s anything special about her chops. She says there are a lot of pretty girls out there with great acting chops who could easily replace her as one of the hot young stars of the moment. So she just wants to enjoy being in the spotlight for as long as it lasts.

When you lick your chops, you look forward to something with great anticipation. And when someone busts your chops, he injures or harasses you. But if you want to get better at English, the only chops you need to worry about are your English chops.

What kind of chops do you have? Do you think it’s true that there are a lot of girls out there with good acting chops?


1. Examples - Hear some example sentences.

Go Super to Listen Go Super!

“David is a decent musician, but I don’t think he has the chops to be famous.”

“I don’t have great chops as a singer, but I’m determined to get better.”

“Lance is a brilliant actor. He has amazing chops.”


1. Winners - See who guessed the slang definition correctly.

it means that they can change in acting. They can be in a different masks of actors.If she is sad, she could be a clown iа the scenario needs
by Morena Loca
I think it means be talented for or good at acting.
by Mr.Bean's wife
Lubna Alyy to 'have great acting chops' means that he/she is a great actor/actress, knows how to act great, or is good at doing something/acting,their callings.......I guess.
by Lubna Alyy
to have great acting chops means to have a talent in acting
by monacovalentina
chomo quality:0
by chomo
i think,it means that these girls have good acting abilities
by maryfrommars
NoMaD I could say: to have great acting chops means to have great acting skills and high performance.
by NoMaD

Want to guess next week's slang?

The iTEP® test

  • Schedule an iTEP® test and take the official English Practice Test.

    Take Now >


Log in to Comment


South Korea

I think I have chops  to persuade potential customers in a minute. However, I don’t have any chops to improve my Enlgish skills. If you have any chops regarding English learning, let me know it. ^^

09:40 AM Dec 30 2012 |


Dominican Republic

i dont have a great chop as an english speaker.but im going to get better…

07:33 PM Mar 03 2010 |




Humm I guess I have great chops to work as a gym teacher ;) I'm pretty happy when I'm able to reach the goals of my pupils :)

07:11 PM Nov 19 2009 |




really do you think tha have good chops it make you be better?, well i don't know, but i don't care abou it…


12:49 AM Nov 18 2009 |

Mr.Bean's wife


I  think I have amazing chops in being with kids. I think I am good with kids. I love them and they love me in return. I teach kids English and I really love my job. It gives me a lot of opportunities to be with kids. I always have a blast whenever I am with kids. 

05:32 AM Nov 17 2009 |



what dose it mean? It means somebody act very well,right?

02:53 AM Nov 17 2009 |




Smile chops it means core skill or gift of personality.

04:43 PM Nov 16 2009 |




My queen…

O my sweet dear queen…

to you i am writing…

my pen penning my feelings to you…

trying to let you know how much i miss you…

my queen…

wish you know,how much feelings i hold inside…

wish you feel my honest love which i keep into my heart…

wish you know ,how i feel just when i see you…

O my queen…

wish you know…

no one lived into my hearts` land…

no one has a rights to think about…

no one lived into my dreams…

no one shared me my loneliness…

no one touched the sensitive part into my heart… 

only you…

the only one who owned the mind and the heart…

owned my heart…

and become my queen…

O my queen…

sweet lovely queen…

please come be more close to me…

come and look into my eyes…

come and see the frame into my eyes…

its your picture into that frame…

drew into there from a long age…

and written around your picture…

i love you…

O my queen…

to you i am writing a meanings embodied by my soul…

and written through my breathes…

and sent to you through my longings` breeze…

chose you and called you…

to house forever your heart…

my sweet lovely queen…

my beautiful amazing tune…

and the address to my life…

you are my world which i always dive in…

from my missing seas…

sending you my perfumed warm lovely longings…

reminding you…

about this love…

about your lover…

that lover who holds you always into his heart…

dears lovely readers…

did you know now,who is my queen…

who is my sweetheart…

tomorrow or after tomorrow…

she will talk by herself to you all…

to tell you about her lover…

about me…



please feel free to read and to leave your comment and to rate my poem through my link above..


hazem al…

08:55 AM Nov 15 2009 |



10:53 PM Nov 13 2009 |




I think I have computer and technology chops =D

12:45 PM Nov 13 2009 |



Syrian Arab Republic

it's a hard climb to keep the chops in every thing we do…........but it's possibleLaughing

11:34 AM Nov 13 2009 |



I don't think I have some special chops, but I would say English if I was asked. I am just a normal person. And for sure, there're a lot of girls out there with good acting chops, and they just need to wait for it to come to them, the right moment, the right place and the right digger, if you know what I mean! So girls, be patient to be found out!

09:00 AM Nov 13 2009 |




Yes! there's a lot of girls out there with good acting chops. As for mine, I have a chops on playing guitar, I'm not so good though, but at least I can play even just a littleFoot in mouth As for now, I am improving my english chops, that's all.

08:17 AM Nov 13 2009 |



I dont have any idea  about chops

12:53 AM Nov 13 2009 |




yeahh , for instance Carmen Electra , o my gosh !!! she has a bunch of chopssss talking abt acting


11:18 PM Nov 12 2009 |



1) At this moment, I really can't think any good chops.

2) Yeah, why not? They just need a great oportunuty to show their skills. Not only at acting, but also in a lot of another things there are so many people extremaly  "nerds" at what they love to do.

I wish I could have good flerting chops only to do Loff forget Brad Pitty. =D

I could make you the happiest girl of the word as him.

08:52 PM Nov 12 2009 |



can you explaine to me chops

03:00 PM Nov 12 2009 |

Reuben Jumbo


Sure there are a lots out they with good acting chops

02:31 PM Nov 12 2009 |

Reuben Jumbo


How i wis i have chops academically.

02:24 PM Nov 12 2009 |



hello how are you.


11:05 AM Nov 12 2009 |

Likes (27):

See all >

Share this lesson:

  • Share on Facebook
  • Share on Bebo
  • Share on Myspace
  • Share on Twitter
  • Email this to a friend
  • Share on Sina

Post Ebaby! lessons on your blog:

Ebaby! Cast

More English Lessons