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head back: meaning and explanation

The phrasal verb to head back means to return somewhere, usually home.

e.g. I’d love to stay for another drink but I’d better head back. I’ve got an early start tomorrow.

Head back can also be used to mean ‘return in the opposite direction’ or ‘return to where you started from’.

e.g. It’s getting dark and we didn’t bring a torch. I think we should head back.

This phrasal verb is very natural and frequently used in conversational contexts – it’s definitely one to try and use.

Have a go at these micro-dictation exercises to hear this expression being used in context – how much can you understand?

Listening exercises

Micro-listening #1

Accent: England (RP)

. .
should probably . it's .

About the sentence

…it’s going to rain…

Do you know why going to is used here? If you’re not sure, have a look at this exercise on future predictions

Micro-listening #2

Accent: Ireland

Micro-listening #3

Accent: Wales


Extra practice

Here are some questions/links to help you learn the new vocabulary:

  • Have you ever started a walk and then had to head back? What happened?

Photo by Dave Hoefler on Unsplash

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