How to Talk About Weather in English

One of the most basic topics of conversation is the weather. It seems like a discussion that you can't get away from! It's also an easy way to start a conversation, even with strangers. Knowing some simple weather phrases in English will help you get through "small talk" much more easily.

 

Some questions you might hear

  • Is it hot or cold?
  • Is it sunny, should I take sunglasses?
  • Is it raining outside?
  • Should I take my umbrella?
  • What's the weather forecast?
  • What’s the weather expected to be tomorrow?
  • What’s the temperature?
  • How’s the weather?
  • What’s it like outside?

 

No matter what season it is, there are a handful of standard words you would naturally use to describe the weather outside. Perhaps it’s sunny, bright, partly-cloudy, overcast, windy or raining.

However, there are so many more interesting ways to describe the different seasons. So, let’s take a look at season-specific vocabulary.

 


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Spring Vocabulary

Spring is definitely welcome by all. It’s when everything reawakens after a cold winter. The ice melts, the flowers start to bloom, and the trees come alive. Many people take this opportunity to spring clean after a winter spent indoors, throwing open their windows and doors for a bit of cool fresh air.

 

Bloom: when plants and flowers start to flourish
The tulips are always the first spring flowers to bloom.

 

Breeze: a gentle wind
There is a fresh breeze this afternoon, a relief from the howling winter winds.

 

Bright: sunnier and lighter
Since the clocks have been turned back the days are so bright, it’s lovely!

 

Drizzle: light rain
Some days there is a light drizzle, but you don’t need an umbrella.

 

Fresh: not hot but not cold
It’s a perfect day for a walk outside, the air is so fresh.

 

Puddles: when water pools after rain
After heavy rains the park is full of kids jumping in the puddles.

 

Thaw: when the warm sun begins to melt the ice of winter
My favorite season is spring when everything outside begins to thaw and comes to life again.

 

Summer Vocabulary

Then comes summer: the temperature increases, the sun becomes brighter and the days become lazy and long. The outdoor season has begun, and life is definitely easier when the weather is good.

Summer
Where would you like to practice your English in the height of summer?

 

Boiling / scorching: very hot
Today is a scorcher, it’s boiling! We need to swim.

 

Blue skies: clear skies that are a feature of summer days
I woke up this morning to blue skies, what a perfect day.

 

Heatwave: unusually hot weather
I wish I wasn’t stuck in the office during the heatwave, I want to be enjoying the outdoors.

 

In the shade: find refuge under the cool trees away from the sun
It’s too hot today, let’s a find a spot to sit in the shade.

 

Not a cloud in the sky: a perfectly blue sky
It definitely won’t rain today, there is not a cloud in the sky.

 

Stay out of the sun: too hot to be in direct sunlight
Try to stay out of the sun at midday when it’s the strongest.

 

Sun-kissed: the look of spending time in the sun
I love to tan on holiday and come back looking sun-kissed.

 

Autumn Vocabulary

After a hopefully long, hot summer autumn is up next. Jumpers and jerseys come out, meals get warmer and leaves turn yellow and red. It’s time to get cozy!

 

Bundle up: layer up your clothing to keep warm
It’s forecast to be cold tomorrow so make sure you bundle up.

 

Crisp: cool and fresh
Who doesn’t love a bright crisp autumn day.

 

Foggy: a thick cloud that restricts visibility
It was difficult to see far this morning as it was so foggy.

 

Getting colder: warm weather is turning cooler
I can feel the evening are getting colder.

 

Muddy: covered in mud
It’s been raining a lot; the park is too muddy to walk in.

 

Rustle of leaves: the sound of dry leaves
The leaves rustled in a gust of wind.

 

Winter Vocabulary

And then just like that it’s winter. Dark evenings and snowy days are frequent, and people spend most of their time indoors shielded from the harsh elements outside.

Snowball fight
Our Toronto students trying to keep warm in the bitter cold during a snowball fight

 

Below zero / bitter cold: freezing cold
I heard this weekend is going to be bitterly cold, I think it’s better we stay indoors.

 

Cold front: particularly gloomy weather approaching
Oh no! A cold front is coming next week, it’s going to be freezing.

 

Howling winds: strong winds
The sound of the howling winds woke me up in the middle of the night.

 

Icy: very cold
The wind this evening feels so icy cold.

 

In the dead of winter: in the middle of the season when it's very cold
We’ve decided to escape the dead of winter and travel to a sunny destination.

 

Toasty: warm and cosy
Tonight, I’m spending a toasty evening in front of the television.

 

Winter blues: feeling gloomy during the season
The long dark nights give me the winter blues.

 

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