How to Use English Collocations with the Word MAKE

How to Use English Collocations with the Word MAKE-min

Table of Contents


Hello, English learners!

If you’ve ever felt like English is playing a game of hide-and-seek with your vocabulary, you’re not alone.

The English language is a puzzle, filled with quirky combinations of words that just seem to make sense…or do they?

Today, we’re diving headfirst into one of the most versatile words in the English language: MAKE.

Whether you’re making friends, making a sandwich, or even making a scene, this little word has a big role to play.

Join us on a journey where we’ll unravel the secrets of MAKE and discover the incredible collocations that make English the fascinating language it is.

Read on and let me show you how to use English collocations with the word MAKE.

Get ready to make your English skills shine, one phrase at a time!

Verb Tenses Using Collocations With The Word Make

I just want to point out that you need to use the right verb tenses with the word MAKE and the collocations that use this word.

MAKE is a verb so it can change form for the different verb tenses.


So, as an example, let’s look at the phrase:


Make a Sandwich


It could be used in the following verb tenses:


Present Tense

I make a sandwich for lunch most days.


Past Tense

I made a sandwich for lunch earlier today.


Present Perfect

I have made sandwiches for the office party.


Future Tense

I will make sandwiches for the office party.

I am going to make sandwiches for the office party.


Please be aware of these different verb tenses when using the collocations in the guide.

Decision Making

There are three main collocations using MAKE when talking about decisions.

These are:

  • Make A Decision
  • Make A Choice
  • Make A Judgment


What They Mean


All three have roughly the same meaning — and that is to choose one thing above another.

When making a decision or a choice, you have two or more options. So, you choose one — you make a decision or make a choice.

And if you make a judgment, you choose an opinion or a verdict on something.


How To Use Them In Everyday English


Make A Decision


Sentence: After much deliberation, I finally made the decision to accept the job offer.


Expression: It’s time to make a decision about where to go for our vacation.


Make A Choice


Sentence: When shopping for a new car, I had to make a choice between fuel efficiency and a larger interior space.


Expression: It’s not always easy to make the right choice, but we have to trust our instincts sometimes.


Make A Judgment


Sentence: The judge will make a judgment based on the evidence presented in court.


Expression: Before you make a judgment about someone, try to understand their perspective.


How to Use English Collocations with the Word MAKE (3)

Effort and Progress

It’s pretty simple. There are two main phrases you can use.

  • Make progress
  • Make an effort


What They Mean


To make progress means to increase in progress. To increase your ability in something.

To make an effort means to increase your efforts in trying to do something.


How To Use Them In Everyday English


Make Progress


Sentence: By consistently studying every day, she was able to make significant progress in her language skills.


Expression: Despite the challenges, we are determined to make progress toward our project’s completion.


Make An Effort


Sentence: If you want to improve your fitness, you need to make an effort to exercise regularly.


Expression: I appreciate that you made an effort to attend the meeting, even though you had a busy schedule.


Communication and Interaction

There are several collocations using MAKE when talking about communication and interaction with others.

Take a look below…

  • Make a suggestion
  • Make a request
  • Make a recommendation
  • Make an observation
  • Make a proposal
  • Make a speech
  • Make a phone call
  • Make an announcement


What They Mean


Make a suggestion, make a recommendation, make an observation or make a proposal all mean to offer or give a suggestion, a recommendation, an observation or a proposal.

So, if you make a suggestion, you are offering one way or a choice of something that can be considered by the person or persons you are talking to.

Make a request means to ask for something.

And make a speech, make a phone call and make an announcement all mean to perform the act of doing those things.

So, if you make a speech, this means you are speaking in front of a group of people.


How To Use Them In Everyday English


Make a Suggestion


Sentence: I would like to make a suggestion for our next team project — how about focusing on sustainability initiatives?


Expression: If you have any ideas, please don’t hesitate to make a suggestion during the brainstorming session.


Make a Request


Sentence: Can you make a request to the IT department to fix my laptop’s connectivity issue?


Expression: Before the meeting, I’ll make a request for additional time to present my report.


Make a Recommendation


Sentence: Based on my experience, I make a strong recommendation that you try the new restaurant downtown.


Expression: When you write your report, don’t forget to make a recommendation for how to improve the current process.


Make an Observation


Sentence: During the nature hike, I made the observation that the forest seemed healthier this year.


Expression: Before we proceed, let me make an observation about the current market trends.


Make a Proposal


Sentence: He plans to make a proposal to the board for a new marketing strategy.


Expression: If you have any ideas for the project, please feel free to make a proposal at our next meeting.


Make a Speech


Sentence: Tomorrow, I’ll have to make a speech in front of a large audience at the conference.


Expression: She’s been practising her public speaking for weeks. She has to make a graduation speech very soon.


Make a Phone Call


Sentence: I need to make a phone call to confirm our dinner reservation for tonight.


Expression: Could you please make a phone call to the supplier to ask about the delivery schedule?


Make an Announcement


Sentence: The CEO will make an announcement regarding the company’s future plans during the staff meeting.


Expression: Before we end the session, I’d like to make an announcement about the upcoming training workshop.


How to Use English Collocations with the Word MAKE (5)

Planning and Organisation

Look at these three phrases when talking about planning and organisation using MAKE.

  • Make an appointment
  • Make arrangements
  • Make a plan


What They Mean


They all mean roughly the same thing and that is to organise or to set clear dates and times.


How To Use Them In Everyday English


Make an Appointment


Sentence: I need to make an appointment with the dentist for a check-up.


Expression: To avoid waiting, it’s a good idea to make an appointment at the hair salon.


Make Arrangements


Sentence: Before the wedding, we need to make arrangements for catering and decorations.


Expression: I’ll make arrangements for transportation to the conference venue so that everyone can travel together.


Make a Plan


Sentence: Let’s sit down and make a plan for the upcoming project to ensure it goes smoothly.


Expression: It’s important to make a plan before going on a road trip to ensure we have everything we need.


How to Use English Collocations with the Word MAKE (6)

Commitment and Responsibility

I have included three phrases for commitment and responsibility and MAKE.

  • Make a promise
  • Make a commitment
  • Make a payment


What They Mean


With the phrases make a promise and make a commitment, the word make here means to fulfil a promise or an obligation. To ensure that a certain kind of action will take place.

With make a payment, it means to commit to a prearranged agreement to fulfil a financial agreement.


How To Use Them In Everyday English


Make a Promise


Sentence: He made a promise to always support her, no matter what.


Expression: Before she left, her mother asked her to make a promise to take care of herself.


The phrase make a promise is often used when referring to someone else, but rarely ourselves. When talking about ourselves, we don’t usually say ‘I make a promise…’, we just say ‘I promise…’.


Make a Commitment


Sentence: When you join the team, you need to make a commitment to attend all the meetings.


Expression: Before making any decisions, think carefully and make a commitment to your goals.


Make a Payment


Sentence: Please make a payment of the outstanding balance by the end of the month.


Expression: To complete your order, you can make a payment online or at the store.


Impact and Contribution

When talking about impact and contribution, there are four main collocations using the word MAKE.

  • Make an impact
  • Make a statement
  • Make a contribution
  • Make a difference


What They Mean


The word MAKE here is used to convey the idea of creating or causing a certain effect or outcome.

In all four phrases, MAKE is used to emphasize the idea of actively and purposefully bringing about a specific result, effect, or change in a given context.


How To Use Them In Everyday English


Make an Impact


Sentence: By volunteering at the local shelter, she was able to make a positive impact on the lives of homeless individuals.


Expression: The new environmental policy aims to make an impact on reducing carbon emissions.


Make a Statement


Sentence: Her bold choice of attire at the event certainly made a statement and got everyone’s attention.


Expression: When you give a presentation, make sure your slides make a clear and concise statement.


Make a Contribution


Sentence: Many generous donors make significant contributions to our charity every year.


Expression: Each team member is expected to make a contribution to the group project by sharing their expertise.


Make a Difference


Sentence: Teaching children about sustainability can make a difference in how they view and care for the environment.


Expression: Even small acts of kindness can make a difference in someone’s day.


How to Use English Collocations with the Word MAKE (8)

Mistakes and Corrections

I have attached two main phrases below for making mistakes or making amends.

  • Make a mistake
  • Make amends


What They Mean


With make a mistake, MAKE means to perform an action that causes an error or mistake.

But with make amends, MAKE means to perform an action to rectify the error or mistake.


How To Use Them In Everyday English


Make a Mistake


Sentence: It’s okay to make a mistake as long as you learn from it and try to avoid repeating it.


Expression: Don’t be too hard on yourself; everyone is bound to make mistakes from time to time.


It is very common to use the phrase ‘make mistakes’.


Make Amends


Sentence: After the argument, he realized he was wrong and decided to make amends by apologizing.


Expression: If you’ve hurt someone’s feelings, it’s important to make amends and show that you genuinely care about the other person’s emotions.


How to Use English Collocations with the Word MAKE (9)

Social and Emotional

Now let’s look at four expressions we can use with MAKE and talking about social and emotional aspects.

  • Make friends
  • Make memories
  • Make peace
  • Make a wish


What They Mean


Make friends: This means to form new social connections or relationships with other people.

Make memories: This means to create and store experiences or moments in your life that you can recall and cherish in the future.

Make peace: This means to resolve conflicts, disputes, or disagreements and establish a state of harmony, calm, or reconciliation.

Make a wish: This means to express a desire or hope for something, often with the belief that it may come true.


How To Use Them In Everyday English


Make Friends


Sentence: In college, she was able to make friends from all around the world through various student organizations.


Expression: Don’t be shy; try to make friends with your new neighbours by introducing yourself.


Make Memories


Sentence: During our vacation, we made wonderful memories exploring the picturesque countryside.


Expression: Take lots of photos to make memories of this special occasion.


Make Peace


Sentence: After years of conflict, the two nations finally came together to make peace through diplomatic negotiations.


Expression: In a heated argument, sometimes it’s better to take a step back and make peace rather than holding onto anger.


Make a Wish


Sentence: As she blew out the candles on her birthday cake, she closed her eyes to make a wish.


Expression: When you see a shooting star, tradition says you should make a wish for good luck.


How to Use English Collocations with the Word MAKE (10)

Creative and Artistic

I have included three collocations using MAKE when talking about creative or artistic pursuits.

  • Make art
  • Make a cake
  • Make furniture


What They Mean


The use of MAKE for all these expressions is to visualise and create something from your own mind or imagination.


How To Use Them In Everyday English


Make Art


Sentence: She loves to make art using various mediums, such as painting, drawing, and sculpture.


Expression: Many people find it therapeutic to make art as a way to express themselves.


Make a Cake


Sentence: Tomorrow is my daughter’s birthday, so I’m going to make a cake with her favourite flavours and decorations.


Expression: Would you like to come over for a baking session? We can make a cake together.


Make Furniture


Sentence: He has a woodworking hobby and enjoys making furniture like tables, chairs, and bookshelves.


Expression: It’s impressive how skilled craftsmen can make furniture that’s both functional and aesthetically pleasing.


How to Use English Collocations with the Word MAKE (11)

Financial Actions

There are several ways we can use MAKE with financial action collocations.

Let’s take a look at them now…

  • Make money
  • Make an investment
  • Make a purchase
  • Make a withdrawal
  • Make a deal
  • Make a trade


What They Mean


Make money: This means to earn or generate income or profit, typically through various means, such as employment, business activities, investments, or other financial endeavours.

Make an investment: This means to allocate capital or resources with the expectation of earning a return or gaining value over time.

Make a purchase: This means to buy or acquire goods or services by exchanging money or other forms of payment.

Make a withdrawal: This means to take money out of a financial account or institution, such as a bank or investment account.

Make a deal: This means to negotiate and agree on the terms of a transaction or arrangement, often in a business or financial context.

Make a trade: This means to exchange one asset for another, often in financial markets.


How To Use Them In Everyday English


Make Money


Sentence: Through years of hard work and dedication, he was able to make money and achieve financial stability.


Expression: Many people aim to make money to support their families and achieve their life goals.


Make an Investment


Sentence: It’s a good idea to make an investment in stocks or real estate to secure your financial future.


Expression: Before you decide to make an investment, it’s essential to research and understand the risks involved.


Make a Purchase


Sentence: I need to make a purchase of a new laptop because my old one is no longer working.


Expression: Before you make a purchase, compare prices and read reviews to ensure you’re getting the best deal.


Make a Withdrawal


Sentence: I went to the bank to make a withdrawal from my savings account to cover unexpected expenses.


Expression: You can make a withdrawal from the ATM if you need cash for small expenses.


Make a Deal


Sentence: After negotiations, the two companies were able to make a deal for a mutually beneficial partnership.


Expression: In business, it’s important to know how to make a deal that benefits both parties involved.


Make a Trade


Sentence: Traders on the stock market make trades to buy and sell stocks throughout the day.


Expression: If you want to make a trade in the foreign exchange market, you’ll need to stay updated on currency exchange rates.


How to Use English Collocations with the Word MAKE (12)

Time and Routine

Now let’s take a look at four phrases we can use with MAKE and our daily routines.

  • Make breakfast/lunch/dinner
  • Make a cup of tea/coffee
  • Make a bed
  • Make time


What They Mean


For the phrases make breakfast/lunch/dinner and make a cup of tea/coffee, it means to prepare the food or drinks for us to eat or drink or to offer to others.

Make a bed means tidying the sheets and covers on the bed and arranging the pillows so the bed looks neat.

Make time means allocating or allowing some time for something.


How To Use Them In Everyday English


Make Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner


Sentence: Every morning, she enjoys making breakfast for her family, usually pancakes or omelettes.


Expression: Let’s make lunch together with whatever we have in the kitchen.


Make a Cup of Tea/Coffee


Sentence: When I feel stressed, I like to take a break and make a cup of tea to relax.


Expression: Would you like me to make you a cup of coffee while we chat?


Make a Bed


Sentence: It’s essential to make the bed in the morning to keep the bedroom looking tidy.


Expression: If you make your bed every day, your room will always look neat and inviting.


We often say; make the bed or make your/my bed.


Make Time


Sentence: Despite a busy schedule, she always manages to make time for her hobbies and interests.


Expression: If you want to improve your skills, you need to make time for practice and learning.


Physical Actions

And we have two collocations for actions and the word MAKE.

  • Make room
  • Make a sandwich


What They Mean


Make room: This means to create or free up space within a confined area.

Make a sandwich: This means preparing a sandwich by assembling various ingredients between slices of bread.


How To Use Them In Everyday English


Make Room


Sentence: We need to make room in the garage for the new bicycles, so we should clear out some old items.


Expression: Please make room for the additional chairs; we have more guests coming over.


Make a Sandwich


Sentence: I’m hungry, so I’ll go to the kitchen and make a sandwich for lunch.


Expression: Let’s make sandwiches for our picnic tomorrow; they’re easy to carry and delicious.


How to Use English Collocations with the Word MAKE (14)

Troublesome Actions

I have included four expressions we can use when talking about troublesome actions and MAKE.

  • Make trouble
  • Make a scene
  • Make a noise/too much noise
  • Make a mess


What They Mean


In these phrases, MAKE is used to describe actions or behaviours that involve causing problems, drawing attention, producing sound, or creating disorder or untidiness.


How To Use Them In Everyday English


Make Trouble


Sentence: If you continue to make trouble at school, you’ll face disciplinary action.


Expression: Please don’t make trouble during the family gathering; let’s all get along peacefully.


Make a Scene


Sentence: When she didn’t get her way, she started to make a scene in the restaurant, drawing everyone’s attention.


Expression: I don’t want to make a scene at the office, so I’ll address my concerns privately with my manager.


Make a Noise/Too Much Noise


Sentence: The kids are playing outside and making a lot of noise; it’s hard to concentrate in here.


Expression: Please don’t make too much noise in the library; it’s meant to be a quiet place for studying.


Make a Mess


Sentence: While cooking, I accidentally spilt flour all over the kitchen, making a mess.


Expression: When you finish your art project, remember to clean up and not make a mess in the living room.


How to Use English Collocations with the Word MAKE (15)


And finally, one more expression for you.

  • Make an exception


What It Means


In the phrase Make An Exception, the word MAKE is used to convey the act of creating or allowing a special case or deviation from a rule, standard, or norm.


How To Use It In Everyday English


Sentence: The company’s policy is to never allow late submissions, but they decided to make an exception in your case due to the extenuating circumstances.


Expression: I usually stick to my schedule, but I’ll make an exception and meet with you tomorrow instead of next week.



That about wraps up my guide on English collocations with the word MAKE.

Hopefully, it has helped you gain some more useful phrases that you can in your English speaking and writing.

Keep practising, keep making strides, and soon enough, you’ll make it look easy.

Best of luck!

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2 thoughts on “How to Use English Collocations with the Word MAKE”

  1. This comprehensive guide on using English collocations with the word “MAKE” is incredibly helpful for English learners. The breakdown of various categories and their respective collocations, along with explanations and example sentences, makes it a valuable resource for improving one’s vocabulary and language skills.

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