American English Slang Terms You Should Know

American English Slang Terms You Should Know

Learning English can be difficult because of the grammar rules, vocabulary, and making sure that you are pronouncing the words correctly. Another challenge that students face is slang words and phrases.

Slang is a type of language that consists of words and phrases that are regarded as very informal, are more common in speech than writing, and are typically restricted to a particular context or group of people. While you are watching television, listening to songs, or speaking to native English speakers, you will hear plenty of slang words that can seem confusing.

To help you improve your English, here are a few common American slang terms that you should know and try out for yourself:


This is an acronym that means 'to be honest.' It is used to express honesty and is mostly used on social media. You can use TBH to encourage someone and give a positive comment or reveal a secret to someone. 


You use bail to mean you are canceling plans with someone. For example, you planned to go to the movies with your best friend on Friday, but then your brother tells you that you need help on Friday moving. You can't do both, so you will have to tell your friend, "I'm sorry, but I have to bail on Friday."


Calling someone "extra" is calling someone dramatic and excessive. This is close to calling someone a "drama queen."


To ghost someone means to cut off communication with someone completely and with no warning. This term is usually used with developing relationships when one person stops all contact with the other and gives no reasoning behind it.


Lowkey means that you secretly think something or want to do something quietly. Highkey is the opposite. It means you are not being quiet about something, and it is not a secret – you want others to know about it.


When someone mentions "tea," it means gossip. People will use the phrases "spill the tea" or "what's the tea" to express they want to gossip or discuss personal information about someone else.


To chill means to relax or calm down. For instance, if you see your friend getting mad or upset about something that happened, you would tell them that they need to chill.


GOAT does not mean the animal goat. GOAT is an acronym for "greatest of all time." You can call someone a GOAT if you believe that they are the greatest of all time in their field. Some popular named 'GOATS' are Tom Brady for football, Serena Williams for tennis, and Kobe Bryant for basketball.


Hangry is a combination of two English words, hungry and angry. People who are so hungry that they get angry will call themselves "hangry." So if you are ever starving and starting to get irritated, you can say you are hangry.

Now that you know a few new slang terms, you should try them out! Slang is a great way to improve your English while also helping you to connect with new friends and communicate in new ways.

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Published on February 17, 2021

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