Listening Exercises: Corona special.

6th April 2020

Virus corona: 'Khả năng cao' sẽ lây lan diện rộng ở Anh Quốc - BBC ...

Firstly, let me start by wishing you all the best. I hope you are staying safe and well. Aside from the medical implications of this pandemic, the widespread lockdown is affecting people’s psychological health, their jobs and therefore their financial security.

As the death toll in my native UK approaches five thousand, our Prime Minister has been hospitalised, and people are being advised to stay indoors, self-isolate and maintain social distancing.

Against this backdrop, I have two recent clips to help my students.

I appreciate that learning English isn’t a priority at the moment, but my school remains open (for online teaching) so people can continue working and therefore have money to pay living costs and help the economy continue.

So, without further ado, the first of clips:

If the clip doesn’t open, here is the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wE4Cmr1j0tA

On the 5th April, Queen Elizabeth II addressed (spoke to) the nation.

For students, this is a chance to hear Queen’s English, as spoken by the Queen. Not only will this assist your pronunciation, but you will also encounter many new words and expressions.

As listening is very hard, I suggest only playing ten or twenty seconds, then replaying until you feel confident that you understand. After, copy, imitate the accent, listen for stress and intonation.

Queen’s Address 5th April 20202:https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2020/04/05/queens-coronavirus-speech-full-will-succeed-better-days-will/

The text of the speech is below

I am speaking to you at what I know is an increasingly challenging time. A time of disruption in the life of our country: a disruption that has brought grief to some, financial difficulties to many, and enormous changes to the daily lives of us all.

I want to thank everyone on the NHS front line, as well as care workers and those carrying out essential roles, who selflessly continue their day-to-day duties outside the home in support of us all. I am sure the nation will join me in assuring you that what you do is appreciated and every hour of your hard work brings us closer to a return to more normal times.

I also want to thank those of you who are staying at home, thereby helping to protect the vulnerable and sparing many families the pain already felt by those who have lost loved ones. Together we are tackling this disease, and I want to reassure you that if we remain united and resolute, then we will overcome it.

I hope in the years to come everyone will be able to take pride in how they responded to this challenge. And those who come after us will say the Britons of this generation were as strong as any. That the attributes of self-discipline, of quiet good-humoured resolve and of fellow-feeling still characterise this country. The pride in who we are is not a part of our past, it defines our present and our future.  

The moments when the United Kingdom has come together to applaud its care and essential workers will be remembered as an expression of our national spirit; and its symbol will be the rainbows drawn by children. 

Across the Commonwealth and around the world, we have seen heart-warming stories of people coming together to help others, be it through delivering food parcels and medicines, checking on neighbours, or converting businesses to help the relief effort.  

And though self-isolating may at times be hard, many people of all faiths, and of none, are discovering that it presents an opportunity to slow down, pause and reflect, in prayer or meditation.

It reminds me of the very first broadcast I made, in 1940, helped by my sister. We, as children, spoke from here at Windsor to children who had been evacuated from their homes and sent away for their own safety. Today, once again, many will feel a painful sense of separation from their loved ones. But now, as then, we know, deep down, that it is the right thing to do. 

While we have faced challenges before, this one is different. This time we join with all nations across the globe in a common endeavour, using the great advances of science and our instinctive compassion to heal. We will succeed – and that success will belong to every one of us. 

We should take comfort that while we may have more still to endure, better days will return: we will be with our friends again; we will be with our families again; we will meet again.

But for now, I send my thanks and warmest good wishes to you all.  

The second clip is from the newly-appointed leader of the Labour Party, Sir Kier Starmer. This clip has English subtitles:

Watch here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JbOakNL-XqE&t=300s

New vocabulary and expressions:

anti-Semitism: prejudice and hatred towards Jewish people

NHS: the National Health Service

poignant:feeling of strong sadness

play its full part: to do a job properly

we will shine a torch on: we will look carefully at something and discuss it if we disagree.

to call something out: to speak if you think someone has made a mistake or is doing something wrong.

You will hear many new expressions in this speech. Write down words and phrases you don’t know, look them up online, then try to use them in your English.

Love Is GREAT Britain: A Welcoming Country For All

Everyone stay safe, stay well

IELTS 4 – 5 (Mindset). Implementing precautions

25th March 2020

Life goes on as normal … or does it, indeed can it, should it ? The Scottish MP and First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon, addressed the issue in a recent press conference. In her view, we all have to change our lifestyles and accept that there is a pandemic sweeping the globe.

Image result for nicola sturgeon

The measures, including closing down restaurants and cinemas, are intended to stop the spread of Covid 19. The virus can easily spread in big cities such as New York, Tokyo and London.

Different countries have imposed different restrictions, and I’d like to focus on Vietnam where, as of 14.00 today, the 25th March, there are 134 reported cases but no fatalities. We shall examine what steps the Vietnamese government has taken, after a quick revision.

Remember, IELTS students have to be able to use these low-frequency words in order to pass the exam.

isolate // implement // significant // rely //

precautions // quarantine // regulations

Students are given three minutes to write three sentences using three of these words.

Now, once these words roll off the tongues of the students, we can move on; actions taken by the Vietnamese authorities.

Image result for vietnam coronavirus

Latest Updates from the Vietnam- Briefing.com website

What do you think about these measures ?

To what extent do you agree with them and why ?

As a resident of Sai Gon, do these measures make you feel more secure, or more scared ?

  • As of March 25, Vietnam’s Ministry of Health confirmed a total of 134 cases of COVID-19. The latest cases were all linked to international flights. 19 cases were announced on March 22 itself – the biggest single day total.
  • Ho Chi Minh City authorities have ordered the closure of all restaurants (with a capacity of 30 people or more), gyms, beauty salons, barbershops from March 24 to March 31.
  • Vietnam has stopped exporting rice from March 24 to ensure national food security.
  • All international airlines have been asked to stop transporting overseas Vietnamese to Tan Son Nhat Airport in Ho Chi Minh City from March 25 to March 31 to prevent overcrowding at quarantine facilities.
  • Vietnam has suspended the entry of all foreigners from March 22 to limit the spread of COVID-19. The measure will not apply to diplomats and officials as per Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc. The Prime Minister also ordered the suspension of all international flights, though it’s unclear exactly when this will take effect.
  • The Health Ministry has advised all arrivals from March 1 to self-isolate at home if they have not been quarantined in a centralized zone in the past 14 days.
  • Vietnam and Cambodia have closed their borders from March 20 to further prevent the spread of the epidemic. The measures do not apply to official and diplomatic passports. 
  • The Vietnamese government is expected to unveil a credit package of US$10.8 billion and a fiscal package of US$1.3 billion in March for businesses affected by the coronavirus outbreak.

Read more here: https://www.vietnam-briefing.com/news/vietnam-business-operations-and-the-coronavirus-updates.html/

Image result for vietnam coronavirus

The government also made an educational video. You can watch it here: https://observers.france24.com/en/20200306-government-clip-inspires-coronavirus-safety-dance-challenge-vietnam

Image result for vietnam coronavirus