Idiom About Change: Turn over a New Leaf

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Kevin Turns Over a New Leaf

Most languages have idioms about change. And, there are many different sayings that express getting a new outlook or starting again. 

One of my favorite idioms of change is an ancient Chinese saying: “Mountains crumble to the sea over time, yet people remain the same.” However, we are here to discuss the idiom “turn over a new leaf.” 

Oddly, this idiom has nothing to do with leaves. It’s about becoming a new person, a better person. Someone who “turns over a new leaf” changes the direction of their life. 

Using the idiom turn over a new leaf

How can I use the idiom – turn over a new leaf?

Kevin was a troublemaker. He never went to class. He never listened to his parents. He would even laugh at the lessons the elders tried to teach him, saying “You don’t know anything old man,” as the family spoke to him of ancient books and traditions. But one day Kevin came to me and said, “I’m tired of causing mischief. I will study and make good marks in school.” To which I said, “You are young and have time to turn over a new leaf.” 

Kevin will begin to do the right thing. He will turn over a new leaf by making good grades in school and listening to his parents.

Idiom - Turn over a leaf
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Examples of the idiom turn over a new leaf

Xenia turned over a new leaf after meeting him. 

You are still young, it’s not too late to turn over a new leaf. 

Let’s practice 

Q1: Try and make your own sentence.

Q2: Have you ever turned over a new leaf? What happened? 

Q3: Why do you think it’s not easy to turn over a new leaf? 

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