Merry Christmas Everyone!
In honor of the upcoming holidays, we discussed the good, the bad and the ugly of holidays and traditions in general.
For listening, try your hand at The Christmas Gift or learn English with Christmas songs, which features some traditional carols like Rudolph the Red Nosed Reinderr as well as more contemporary twists on Christmas songs.
For reading, find out about different Christmas traditions around the world, or eight strange ways of celebrating Christmas . For original version, why not try the classic poem 'Twas the Night Before Christmas or the story The Gift of the Magi by O. Henry.
Now, on to writing! Please describe your favorite or most hated traditions! Or try writing a short story that takes places at the holidays.
There will be original version cinema over the break as part of Actual Impar at the Bret'on Theater, such as The Master on January 2nd at 19:30, Beasts of the Southern Wild on January 3rd at 19:30, Robot and Frank on January 4th at 19:30.
Don't forget there is no class the last week in December and the first week of January. Enjoy the break and see you after the holidays.
As the year is drawing to a close, we did a "Year in Review" of 2012 this week in class about things that happened this year on a global, national, local and even personal level, discussing all the important current events of 2012 as well as your songs, movies, and people of the year.
For reading, check out one of the many stories at Breaking News English from 2012 which are also available for listening. Or you can read about and vote for Time's Person of the Year, Google's Top Searches of 2012, or the Guardian's Best Films of 2012. Music buffs may like to read about NPR music's 50 best albums of 2012 and see if you discover some new music!
For listening, try listening about some current events of the past year you may have missed, such as Palestine's new status as a non-member observer state in the UN (mp3, transcript, quiz) or the Gangnam Style sensation (mp3, transcript, quiz). Those of you who are music fans may enjoy listening about the discussion of Year in Music.
For writing, the end of the year (and better yet, the end of our first term at Meetinghouse) is a great time for self-reflection about your learning. I recommend you write a short composition to self-evaluate your English learning in the first term of this school year. What do you feel you have improved on? What would you like to change or advance in the next year? And of course, feel free to give me comments for improvement, too!
This week in original version cinema, they are showing Treasure Island at the UR on Friday December 14th at 17:00.
Next week is our extra activity on Wednesday December 19th at 20:30. We are going to have a little Christmas party with some American sweet treats and a yankee swap! I will explain in class how to participate in a Yankee swap (you must bring a wrapped gift), but if you would like to come, sign up online so I know how many people to expect.
Christmas is just around the corner and as children are busy writing their Christmas lists to Santa Claus and the Three Kings, we talked about shopping this week in class. Try working with some important vocabulary and grammar here or take a shopping vocabulary quiz.
For listening, try Shopping For the Day, Listen a Minute about Shopping (mp3 and script), or this BBC podcast about how to haggle (mp3 and script).
Now, let's talk about reading. Read this article about consumerism, another about compulsive shopping, or about "Giving Tuesday."
Don't forget about writing! Do you think Christmas is too focused on consumerism? If so, what do you propose to balance it out? Would you give up giving gifts at the holidays?
This week in original version cinema, they are showing Drive at the Cañas Cinema from December 10th-16th at 20:00.