Toys – Visual Vocabulary

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25 Alternatives to Reading Aloud Around the Class

Philip Haines is originally from London, England but lives in Mexico City, where he has been working as a teacher and teacher trainer since moving there in 1995. He is an author/co-author on several ELT series published in Mexico, in the primary, secondary and adult segments. Philip works as the Senior Academic Consultant for Oxford University Press Mexico.

In most ELT classrooms there are at least a few students who do not particularly like reading. There are many possible reasons for this, but one factor is that students often do not find the act of reading in the classroom very engaging, despite potentially interesting content. Teachers often capture students’ interest with pre-reading and post-reading activities, but when it comes to the actual process of reading some students are simply not engaged.Keep reading

Oxford University Press

shutterstock_116955382Philip Haines is originally from London, England but lives in Mexico City, where he has been working as a teacher and teacher trainer since moving there in 1995. He is an author/co-author on several ELT series published in Mexico, in the primary, secondary and adult segments. Philip works as the Senior Academic Consultant for Oxford University Press Mexico.

In most ELT classrooms there are at least a few students who do not particularly like reading. There are many possible reasons for this, but one factor is that students often do not find the act of reading in the classroom very engaging, despite potentially interesting content. Teachers often capture students’ interest with pre-reading and post-reading activities, but when it comes to the actual process of reading some students are simply not engaged.

A common while-reading activity is to have one student read aloud while the rest of the students follow along…

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TO CUT BACK ON

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Example sentences from the web: 

  • People are not having as many hours to work and they are being cut back on their working hours because of this issue.
  • You’ve drastically cut back on calories, but your body doesn’t stop burning them, so you may feel weak.
  • In recent years, the state began cutting back on costs because of the economy.

 

COME DOWN WITH SOMETHING

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Example sentences from the web:

  • Maybe you’re coming down with an ear infection…
  • He came down with malaria, went home, recovered, and in early 1996, with the support of the World Health Organization, returned.
  • Mr C. has come down with a fever. He can’t work today.

Teaching with TV series – MAKE IT OR BREAK IT

I’m currently teaching English to a 15-year-old girl and she is fond of gymnastics. This is why I’m teaching her English with Make it or Break it, an American television drama series set in the world of competitive gymnastics. Usually I make a vocabulary list for her, than we watch 15 minutes of one episode without subtitles. While we’re watching I ask her questions in order to check if she’s understanding everything. Then I give her 10-15 sentences with some gaps she’s to fill in and two sentences to translate from Italian into English. After learning English with this method for one year she got a B2 certification, so I must say I’m proud of her and I verified this is actually an effective method. Of course, I’m not just teaching her English with this TV series. Sometimes, we read newspaper articles or we watch a TED-Ed video, etc. but in my opinion, teaching with TV series is the most effective way to get teenagers focusing on learning English without getting stressed. She is not getting bored and she’s learning kind of easily. 

Season 2, episode 8:

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TO BE ON THE FENCE => unable to decide about something.

Another example sentence: I was on the fence till you showed up, but thanks for helping me decide.

Season 2, episode 9:

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To get hold of somebody: to contact or find somebody.

Another example sentence: I got hold of the father, and he said the boy wasn’t there, and he doesn’t know about this yet.

Listening Activity – Halloween History

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Yesterday I watched this interesting video by National Geographic on Halloween so I decided to share it with you. As always you’ll find a vocabulary list below and a comprehension activity. I hope you’ll enjoy it :-).

VOCABULARY

COMMUNION (with somebody/something): the state of sharing or exchanging thoughts and feelings; the feeling of being part of something.
Ex. Many people who live in close communion with nature are superstitious.

PRANK:  a trick that is done to someone usually as a joke.
Ex. Jackie’s pranks were starting to annoy her colleagues.

PATCHWORK: a thing that is made up of many different pieces or parts.
Ex. So the world is this complex patchwork of regions.

OCCULT: magic or supernatural.

TO STITCH WITH:  to make (something) out of many different things
Ex. They stitched red and blue ribbons onto their hats.

TO SPAN: to last for a particular period of time, especially a long period.
Ex. His career spanned half a century.

TO SPREAD: to cover, or to make something cover, a larger and larger area.
Ex. The European flu continues to spread throughout the UK.

VEIL: something that covers or hides something else.

TO GATHER:  to bring (things or people) together into a group.
Ex. The children gathered their toys (together) and put them away.

TO FROWN ON SOMEBODY/SOMETHING: to disapprove of somebody/something.
Ex. The company frowns on dating among employees.

TO MERGE:  to combine or make two or more things combine to form a single thing.
Ex. He has plans to merge his own company with another one.

DECEASED: dead; no longer living.

THE FOLD: a group of people with whom you feel you belong or who share the same ideas or beliefs.
Ex. We are hoping that these policies will bring reluctant voters back to the fold.

FAMINE: a situation in which many people do not have enough food to eat.

EXTORTION: the crime of making somebody give you something by threatening them.

BRIBE: something valuable (such as money) that is given in order to get someone to do something.

Free PDF version: listening-activity-Halloween-vocabulary

Watch the video, then try to answer these questions

1. Who originated Halloween traditions? What did they celebrate on October 31st?

2. Why did they lit huge bonfires and gathered around them?

3. When did the Vatican decide to merge this holiday with a church holiday?

4. All Saints day was known as …

5. What does ‘hallow’ mean?

6. When did Halloween become a ‘dangerous holiday’?

7. What was originally ‘trick or treat’?

Free PDF version: Listening-Activity-Halloween-questions

Answers: Listening-Activity-Halloween-answers