Listening Activity – Halloween History

Happy Halloween! pumpking halloween.png

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

 

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Listening Activity based on the NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC’s video –“EXPLORING THE OCEAN FOR SIXTY YEARS – BEST JOB EVER” by Sylvia Earle


Complete the following sentences with the correct words:

  1. Even if you_______________________ (to see- never) the ocean or touch the ocean touches you.
  2. Every breath you take, every ______________ of water you drink it’s the ocean.
  3. For me ___________________ (to be) a biologist just ____________________ (to follow) my heart ____________________ (to lead) me to some fascinating places.
  4. As a scientist I love nothing more than being an explorer ____________________ (to discover) the nature of life itself, that sense of eureka.
  5. It’s a wonderful passport _______________ the ocean.
  6. We are just beginning to assess the magnitude of out ignorance and at the same time that we’re learning more, we’re also discovering how much we_________________________ (to lose).
  7. How do you save the ocean? You find others who __________________ (to have) a similar goal.
  8. All of us depend on these _______________________ and they’re incredibly …. In some ways they’re incredibly ______________________ if we do the right thing but they’re also …
  9. It’s a magical sight that endless horizon that just _____________________ (to stretch) out to blue infinity.
  10. You jump in the ocean and there you find ___________________________.

PDF version:listening-activity-exploring-the-ocean-for-sixty-years-freeenglishmaterialsforyou

Answers: listening-activity-exploring-the-ocean-for-sixty-years-answers-freeenglishmaterialsforyou

Listening activity -What’s the big deal with gluten? by William D. Chey – TED-Ed

Yesterday, I came across this Ted-Ed video and I found it quite informative. It’s just 5 minutes long and it isn’t difficult to understand. As you can guess reading the heading, it’s about GLUTEN, allergies, and intolerances. On Ted-Ed‘s website, you can find other listening activities on the video. 

Below a vocabulary list you should read before watching the video:

cereals-visual-vocabulary

Image source

BIG DEAL: something that is very important.
Ex. This was a really big deal for me.

RECENTLY: not long ago
Ex. I received a letter from her recently.

DIETARY: related to your diet.
Ex. This kind of dietary behaviour needs to be stopped immediately.

CRAZE: an activity, object or idea that is very popular for a short time.
Ex. The new dance craze is spreading.

INSOLUBLE: not able to be dissolved in a liquid.

DOUGH: flour mixed with water, and other ingredients that is baked to make bread, cookies, etc.

TO MOUNT: to activate; to launch.

MILD: not strong in action or effect.
Ex. Your friend had a mild heart attack.

TO IMPAIR: to make something weaker or worse.
Ex. Smoking can impair your health.

RASH: a lot of small red spots on the skin that is caused by an illness or a reaction to something.

FORTUITOUS: happening by chance; not planned.
Ex. My presence here is fortuitous.

PDF version: what-is-the-big-deal-with-gluten-vocabulary

Fill in the gaps in the following sentences:

  1. Maybe you’ve recently seen the phrase “gluten-free” on food ________________, or take-out menus, shampoo bottles, apartment listings, the _______________of your shirt, on a hammer, as a lower back tattoo, or in your friend’s resume.
  2. Next time someone starts telling you about their newfound freedom from gluten, here are some questions you can ask, and the _________________ answers that your friend, being a reasonable individual making educated _________________choices, and by no means just following the latest diet _________________, will tell you.
  3. What is gluten? Gluten is an insoluble protein composite _________________ of two proteins named gliadin and glutenin.
  4. Gluten is found in certain grains, particularly wheat, rye and _______________ .
  5. Gluten is responsible for the elastic consistency of and the chewiness of _______________ foods made from wheat flour, like bread and pasta.
  6. For some people, these foods cause problems, namely wheat allergy, celiac _________________, and non-celiac gluten sensitivity.
  7. Wheat allergy is an uncommon _________________ that occurs when a person’s immune system _________________an allergic response to wheat proteins, leading to mild problems, and in rare cases, a potential dangerous reaction called anaphylaxis.
  8. Celiac disease is an _________________ disease, in which eating foods with gluten leads to inflammation and damage of the lining of the small intestine.
  9. This impairs intestinal function, _________________ to problems like belly pain, bloating, gas, diarrhea, weight loss, skin _________________, bone problems like osteoporosis, iron deficiency, small stature, infertility, fatigue and depression.
  10. Celiac disease is present in one in every 100 to ____________persons in the U.S.
  11. The most effective _________________ is a gluten-free diet, which helps heal intestinal damage and improve symptoms.
  12. Gluten sensitivity’s _________________ in the general population is unclear, but likely much more common than wheat allergy or celiac disease.
  13. For example, it may be the case that gluten can activate the immune system in the small intestine, or cause it to become _________________.
  14. The human intestine can’t _________________ or absorb fructans, so they make their way to the large intestine or colon, where they’re fermented by bacteria, producing short-chain fatty acids and gases.
  15. Another possible explanation behind gluten sensitivity is the ________________ effect.  This occurs when a person believes something will cause problems, and because of that belief, it does. It’s the opposite of the more well-known and much more ____________________ placebo effect.
  16. So a better name than non-celiac gluten___________________might be wheat _____________________.

PDF version: whats-the-big-deal-with-gluten-fill-in-the-gaps-without-answers

Answers: what-is-the-big-deal-with-gluten-answers

 

Get rid of

to-get-rid-of-meaning-phrasal-verb-femfy-free-english-materials-for-you

‘Get rid of’ is an INSEPARABLE phrasal verb.

Example sentences:

  • She’s trying to get rid of us.
  • I can’t get rid of my phone until John calls.
  • I just can’t bring myself to get rid of this old dress because it has so many good memories attached to it.

 

 

Everyday objects, tragic histories by Ziyah Gafić – Listening activity

Vocabulary list

COMB          pink-comb-clipart-1

GENOCIDE: the deliberate killing of people who belong to a particular racial, political, or cultural group.

MUNDANE:  common; ordinary; banal; unimaginative.
Ex. Mundane matters such as paying bills and shopping for food do not interest her.

ABOUT + INFINITIVE: very close to doing something.
Ex. The chorus is about to sing.

TO RECOVER: to get back something lost or spent.
Ex. We have to recover the stolen watch.

GRAVE: a hole in the ground for burying a dead body.

CIVILIAN: a person who is not a member of the police or the armed forces.
Ex. What is more, bombs have been directed at civilian targets, in flagrant violation of the international humanitarian law.

FORENSICS: the study or science of solving crimes by using scientific knowledge or methods.

TOWARDS: in the direction of.
Ex. The bus is heading towards town.

REMNANT: the part of something that is left when the other parts are gone.

TO FADE: to (cause to) lose colour, brightness, or strength gradually.
Ex. These dreams of yours fade like smoke.

EVIDENCE: material that is presented to a court of law to help find the truth about something.

OUT OF SIGHT OUT OF MIND: The idea that something is easily forgotten or dismissed as unimportant if it is not in our direct view.

UNBIASED: fair; impartial.
Ex. By all accounts, Mr. Smith appears to be an unbiased expert in his field.

AWARENESS: knowledge that something exists, or understanding of a situation or subject at the present time based on information or experience.
Ex. To do this requires considerable awareness and commitment.

TO DECAY: to become decomposed; rot; to deteriorate.
Ex. The bodies buried in the fine ash slowly decayed.

Downloadable PDF version:EVERYDAY OBJECTS, TRAGIC HISTORIES – Ziyah Gafić – TED Talks – Vocabulary

 Video without subtitles:
https://embed-ssl.ted.com/talks/ziyah_gafic_everyday_objects_tragic_histories.html

Video with English subtitles:
https://embed-ssl.ted.com/talks/lang/en/ziyah_gafic_everyday_objects_tragic_histories.html

Fill in the gaps in the following sentences with the correct words from the box

Box - words (6)

1.      These are simple objects: clocks, keys, ________________, glasses. 
2.      We are all familiar with these ________________, everyday objects.
3.      The fact that some of the ________________ carried personal ________________ such as toothpaste and a toothbrush is a clear sign they had no idea what was about to happen to them.
4.      These items have been recovered from numerous mass ________________ across my homeland, and as we speak, forensics are ________________bodies from newly discovered mass graves, 20 years after the war.
5.      During the four years of conflict that devastated the Bosnian nation in the early ’90s, approximately 30,000 citizens, mainly ________________, went missing, presumed killed, and another 100,000 were killed during combat operations.
6.      Most of them were killed either in the early days of the war or________________the end of the hostilities, when U.N. safe zones like Srebrenica fell into the hands of the Serb army.
7.      The international criminal tribunal delivered a number of sentences for crimes against humanity and ________________.
8.      Genocide is not only about the killing; it is about the denied ________________.
9.      These items are ________________ from numerous mass graves, and the main goal of this collection of the items is a unique process of ________________ those who disappeared in the killings, the first act of genocide on European soil since the Holocaust.
10.  Thousands of artifacts are packed in white plastic ________________ just like the ones you see on CSI. These objects are used as a forensic tool in visual identification of the victims, but they are also used as very valuable forensic ________________ in the ongoing war crimes trials.
11.  Once the ________________ and doctors and lawyers are done with these objects, they become orphans of the narrative. Many of them get destroyed, believe it or not, or they get simply shelved, out of sight and out of ________________.
12.  Once all the missing persons are identified, only ________________ bodies in their graves and these everyday items will remain.

Downloadable PDF version (without answers): EVERYDAY OBJECTS, TRAGIC HISTORIES – Ziyah Gafić – Fill in the gaps

Downloadable PDF version (answers):EVERYDAY OBJECTS, TRAGIC HISTORIES – Ziyah Gafić – TED Talks – Answers

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“Ahead of the curve” – English Idiom

meaning of ahead of the curve - English Idiom - Free English Materials For You - femfy.jpg

Example sentences from the web:

  • We’re looking for ideas that are edgy, ahead of the curve.
  • It is not exactly ahead of the curve to take four and a half years to make only an informal request.
  • The challenge in business is to stay ahead of the curve.