Learn English with English, baby!

Join for FREE!

Rough Patch
Rough Patch English, baby! Video Lesson

Learn English in this lesson about 'Rough Patch'

Date: May 31 2016

Grammar: Third Conditional


1. Learn Vocabulary - Learn some new vocabulary before you start the lesson.

Go Super to Listen Go Super!

2. Read and Prepare - Read the introduction and prepare to hear the audio.

Go Super to Listen Go Super!

Sometimes, a difficult situation can come out of nowhere. Maybe, you were out for a relaxing drive, when suddenly, your car broke down. Maybe, you came in to work one day and found out that your company had to scale back on its employees… and now you no longer have a job! If you do have a problem, there is no shame in asking a friend for help. After all, everyone hits a rough patch sometimes!

We use the expression “rough patch” to talk about a problem or difficult time. Someone can either hit a rough patch (for example, if your phone just went missing) or go through a rough patch (for example, if your friend has been unemployed for a long time). Rough patches can be stressful, but don’t worry… they won’t last forever. Eventually, you will be able to solve your problem and feel happy again!

Andy has just discovered a strange problem with his office supplies. Can he and Jordin solve this mystery? Watch the video to find out!

3. Watch - Watch the video without reading the dialog.


1. Listen and Read - Listen to the audio and read the dialog at the same time.

Log in to Listen

2. Study - Read the dialog again to see how the vocab words are used.











Andy_H:  Hey, Kelsey.

Kelsey:  Hey.

Andy_H:  Hey, Sheila.

Sheila:  Mmm.

Andy_H:  Hmm. That’s strange.

Jordin:  What’s wrong?

Andy_H:  All my pencils are gone.

Jordin:  Huh. That’s weird.

Andy_H:  It certainly is…. It certainly is…. Aha! A mystery.

Jordin:  Andy, we must solve this mystery!

Andy_H:  Indeed! What are the facts?

Jordin:  Well, your pencils are missing.

Andy_H:  That’s right. They were right there. I remember seeing them when I came into the office.

Dominique:  Hello, Andy.

Andy_H:  Good morning. How’s it going?

Dominique:  Well, we’ve hit a rough patch. We’re going to have to scale back on office supplies this month. I didn’t take your pencils, Andy.

Jordin:  Oh, really?

Andy_H:  Interesting. And yet this morning, you said…

Dominique:  All I was saying is that we were going through a rough patch and would need to cut back on the amount of supplies we were buying.

Andy_H:  I see….

Dominique:  So, there’s no reason why I’d take your pencils.

Andy_H:  I see…

Jordin:  Do we believe her?

Andy_H:  For now. Then, there is Sheila…

Sheila:  How many pencils do you need? I understand you’ve hit a rough patch without your precious pencils, Andy, but you should know one thing before you pin the blame on me. If I had wanted to take your pencils, I would have taken them a long time ago, and I would have made it quite clear that I was the one who took them.

Andy_H:  That’s true.

Jordin:  Yeah, that’s definitely true.


Grammar Point

Go Super to learn "Third Conditional" from this lesson Go Super!


Go Super to take Quiz Go Super!


Lesson MP3

Go Super to download full lesson MP3 Go Super!

The iTEP® test

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

    Take Now >


Go Super to Listen Go Super!

Andy notices something strange at his desk. All of his pencils are missing. This mystery demands to be solved! Jordin volunteers to help Andy in his investigation. The first possible thief is Dominique. Andy remembers talking to her this morning. She said that Travel Bug had hit a rough patch and needed to cut down on office supplies. Perhaps, she took Andy’s pencils? However, after Jordin and Andy interview Dominique, they decide that she probably did not do it. The more likely pencil thief is… Sheila!

Sheila tells Andy and Dominique that she did not take the pencils. If she had, she would have made it quite clear that she was the one who took them. Jordin and Andy agree that Sheila is right. They will have to investigate further to find out the real answer to the case of the missing pencils!

Do you like mystery movies? Have you ever hit a rough patch?



Log in to Comment



“Marriage can wait, education cannot.”

UAN Login PNB Net Banking onlinesbh BOI Net Banking

07:48 AM Apr 22 2017 |




People shouldn’t consider a rough patch itself. It’s just a sequence of unpleasant things or events which happen sometimes. People make a mountain out of a hill, that’s the problem.

03:18 PM Jul 28 2016 |

1 person likes this



yeah rough patches can be seen in this world i come with rough patch when i have taken the exam

03:58 PM Jun 06 2016 |




Rough patches are everywhere,well this life!but as you said they don’t last for so long,because,nothing is iternal.I hit a rough patch this days,but yoy know,all i’ve to do is to be faithful,and patient,i pray my God alot,and i hope it’s gonna be solved,in a good way.

02:18 PM Jun 03 2016 |

Sami Aswad

Sami Aswad


First of all this was a very nice , creative video , good job guys , keep the good work up , appreciate ur efforts…
Another thing I wanna say I’m really in to mystery movie, they are my favorite, yeah for sure everyone hits a rough patch sonetimes, it’s really painful but u learn many things !

12:27 PM Jun 02 2016 |



Iran, Islamic Republic Of

I like mystery movies which make mind very busy.

All of us have had difficult times and maybe we will have. According to this lesson rough patches won’t last forever.

Eventually, we will be able to solve our problems and feel happy again! Or after a period of time (sometimes short or long) we will forget difficult situation and life will be normal.

If you see, you can’t even remember some rough situation which you have had in the past without exactly focus on them!

05:29 PM May 31 2016 |

Likes (7):

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