IELTS: use adverbs frequently, correctly and confidently

3rd July 2020

IELTS students need to know an incredibly wide array of adverbs so, with that in mind, here’s an exercise which can be easily adapted as a team game. Complete the sentences with suitable adverbs. Piece of cake, right ?

Use a thesaurus and dictionary to boost your vocabulary.

Asian University Life Concept Group Young Asian College Students ...

Word Fill

Adverbs of manner & ‘but’, ‘so’ and ‘even though’

(Fast or quickly – both can be used as adverbs, fast more for speed, quickly for time e.g. the animal runs fast and eats quickly.)

Note: ‘well’, ‘fast’ and ‘hard’ are irregular adverbs of manner.

Use a positive adverb for (+) and a negative one for (-)

Example: She sings (+) beautifully but plays piano (-) terribly.

It is raining (-) heavily so I will bring an umbrella

UK weather forecast: London | London Evening Standard
WELCOME TO LONDON

I will go along with you ……I am not really hungry

……….I am not hungry, I will go with you to KFC

Grabbike is cheap …..they drive so (-). 

She failed her test ……..she studied (+)

Do I look like Batman ? Then why are you speaking so …..(-)

Christian Bale says Heath Ledger 'ruined my plans' for Batman and ...
Batman has amazingly good hearing … but not all teachers have so SPEAK UP !

We have learnt many idioms ….that is just the tip of the iceberg.

He loves music …much ….he sings (-).

She never eats the food ………she works there.

……..she speaks English very (+), she is afraid to speak to westerners.

Rosé (BLACKPINK) confessed that she used to be a terrible singer ...
She sang terribly even though she loves music

Adult Speaking Class, level 1: What do they like ?

22nd June 2020

An exercise for lower-intermediates. Help to use basic verbs, and to build long sentences.

We can see five people:

Andrew, Fiona, Helen, Mark and Tina

We see what they eat (dinner), their job (occupation), what they do in their free time (hobby) and what that do on Saturday and Sunday (the weekend).

For example, Andrew likes to drink beer, Tina like to do karate

What do they do ?

Name // dinner // occupation // hobby // weekend 

Andrewsteak and chips
spaghetti
brewerfootball & beersports & cinema DOESN’T like shopping
Fionatuna salad
soups
accountantreading
driving
visits family & shopping DOESN’T like sports
Helensushi
Korean BBQ
marketingyoga & keep fit
craft beer 
exercises & cinema DOESN’T like loud clubs
Markfish and chips
kebabs
civil servantcars and bikes
sports
fixing cars & drinking beer DOESN’T like loud clubs
Tinapasta
pizza
dentistkaraoke
clubs
shopping and meeting friends DOESN’T like beer or sport.
Couple watching a football game | Royalty free photo - 404574
Andrew likes to watch football but his girlfriend does not (doesn’t)
CMA - Lady accountant - (S) - YouTube
Fiona is an accountant
Dara eating sushi (Line play 053115) | 2ne1, South korean idol, Yg ...
Helen likes to eat sushi
Buy his bikes, bee-cause! - Los Angeles Times
Mark likes to ride a bicycle
Taekwondo Girl - Bing Images | Martial arts girl, Taekwondo girl ...
Tina likes to do karate

Make sentences

Use so does with positives, neither does with negatives.

EXAMPLE:

Mark eats chips and so does Andrew. 

Helen doesn’t drink beer neither does Tina.

Tina likes shopping …

Mark doesn’t like loud clubs …

Make questions

EXAMPLE:

Who likes beer ? Who eats Italian food (pizza, pasta, spaghetti) ?

Adult Speaking Class, Level 2: Holiday plans

20th May 2020

Holiday plans

Where would you like to go ?

Look at the four photos. What do you know about the four places ?

What do you need to think about ?

They are all capital cities … will that make them cheap or expensive ?

Do they speak English there ? What is the temperature in winter and summer ? How would you find information ? What do you like to do on holiday ?

Extra activity – describe the photos in as much detail as you can. Use adjectives and make your voice sound excited (or unhappy).

WoW BUENOS AIRES — WOMEN OF WEARABLES
Buenos Aires, capital of Argentina
Supermodel Trish Goff's Guide to Nairobi | Departures
Nairobi, capital of Kenya
How Moscow has changed in the 2010s (PHOTOS) - Russia Beyond
Moscow, capital of Russia
Visiting Copenhagen on a budget – On the Luce travel blog
Copenhagen, capital of Denmark

Work in pairs – write or talk about these points:

Before I go – what do you need to do ?

While I’m in ________________, I’m going to _____________

Are there any places you don’t want to visit ? Why not ?

Pros and cons (good and bad points)

Buenos Aires:

Very colourful city with interesting buildings. Cheaper than some western cities.

In South America – could be a long flight (my class is in Vietnam). Language is Latin – American Spanish.

Nairobi:

National parks and museums. Some great food and can be cheap. English spoken.

Not very safe at night. Insects and bugs plus bad hygiene in some places.

Moscow:

Amazing culture and architecture. Generally safe for tourists. Lots to see and do.

Can be very expensive. Can be bitterly cold in winter. Most people have just basic or no English.

Copenhagen:

Friendly people, small city can be explored on foot. Great beer and healthy, fresh food. High quality standards. English widely spoken, like a second language. Safe.

Is notoriously expensive. Can be very cold and wet in winter. Very long flight (from Viet Nam).

Ask each other what they like best, where they would probably go, where they probably won’t go !

Advanced levels:

To practise complex sentences, make your own answers

The four cities are all interesting in their own way, but if I had to choose just one, I think I would probably select Nairobi in Kenya.

Firstly, I have never been to Africa and it look so different to Europe and Asia. Seeing those beautiful giraffes just walking past the window must be an amazing, unforgettable experience.

Secondly, I know that English is widely spoken in Kenya, so there should be no language barrier even though I expect a lot of culture shock.

However, I expect the heat will be a serious issue, so I must pack a lot of powerful sun cream, sunglasses and a hat. Additionally, i don’t really know much about the city, so I will have to read up.

In conclusion, I feel all cities offer something amazing but my choice would be Nairobi. I’m sure I will have an incredible time in Kenya.

Adult Speaking Class, Level 2: Review – small talk and clothes

11th May 2020

Speaking Practice: Small Talk

Best 10 Apps for Meeting New People - Last Updated May 10, 2020 ...

Ask about:

Job – // What do you do ? // What line are you in ? // where they work

where they live 

how long they have lived there (present perfect)

are they married ? If so, do they have children ? How old are they ?

the weather- // Do you think it will rain later ?

NOT about money, religion, why NOT married, or don’t have children.

To answer:

Oh, really // You don’t say right ! // That sounds interesting // Tell me more 

Wow, fascinating // Do you like your job ? // How long have you been married ?

How old are your children ? Do you have a photo ? // What are you studying ?

Practice:

In a new class, ask each other some general questions. This is best done in pairs, so students don’t feel embarrassed speaking in front of the class. See how long you can keep the conversation going.

Fell free to add new questions.

Meet Your Family's Future at a Family Meeting | Psychology Today ...

Clothes

Which clothes do you like ?

Express what you feel about these clothes, whether or not you would buy them, or do you know someone who would like them ?

Vocabulary:

I choose the because it’s …

stylish // cool // beautiful // colourful // great quality // chic // really suits me

fashionable // trendy // so modern // really with it // I feel a million dollars //

however, you may feel it is …

expensive // ugly // gaudy // bad taste // not my style // old-fashioned // hideous //

I wouldn’t be caught dead in that !

60s Mod Jacket Mens Fancy Dress British Flag Union Jack Adult ...

Adult Speaking Class, level 2: The gift of the gab

10th may 2020

Today’s blog, or activity sheet, is about persuasion; the ability to change someone’s opinion or make them do what YOU want THEM to do. This is known as having ‘the gift of the gab.’

This skill is mostly associated with salesmen who, without cheating or lying, make their product sound so wonderful that you simply HAVE TO buy it … and then you get home and realise you have parted with your hard-earned money for something you don’t want, don’t need and will never use.

The Cowboy Market Trader: The Fly, The Dustbin, The Alien. The ...

Before we kick off, let’s roll out some new expressions:

One born every minute = negative, means that the person is an idiot, who bought something useless.

He/She saw you coming = negative, means the seller thought you would buy the poor quality item or pay too much for it.

Paid over the odds = negative, means paying too much for something.

Could sell sand to an Arab = positive, means the seller is so persuasive, he could sell anything to anyone (here, people who live in the desert do NOT need to buy sand).

Unique = positive, only one or something totally different and special.

Examples:

You paid £50 for that shirt ? He must have seen you coming !

The hotel was $75, I think I paid over the odds.

She’s such a great seller, she could sell sand to an Arab.

I can’t believe he though it was a real Rolex watch … for €30. Oh well, there’s one born every minute !

Activity

Welcome to

Mr Paul’s Wonderfully useful store

Here, you can find all sorts of incredibly useful and wonderful items.

The students have to practise their selling and persuasive skills, in order to sell these … ‘wonderful’ … items. As always, an example:

One grey sock

A truly wonderful sock (one), almost nearly perfect

Ladies and gentlemen, step right up, I have an absolute unique items for you. As you see, I have, just today ONLY, one beautiful delightful almost never-used silver-coloured sock, perfect for men, women or even children, yes, they can grow into it !

This amazing item, one of a kind, can be used for so many things, for example … have crying children ? Simply put the sock on your hand and … a PUPPET ! Guaranteed to stop all tears. Been shopping and have so many dirty, heavy coins ? No problem, simply put the coins in the sock. Having a party ? What would look better than this magnificent sock hanging proudly above the door ? Can use it for Christmas, Thanksgiving, Tet Holiday, Easter, Passover, Ramadan, Birthdays, Weddings … you name it … You CANNOT live without it …

You can have this priceless item for just £100 … OK, to you, today only … £75

Now … your turn

Write a ‘sales pitch’ for one of these items, think of some uses for it, then set a price. Try to convince your classmates to buy your unique item.

Some ideas for uses are at the end of the blog

One old Tea-bag
Old wine bottle cork
Old banana skin
Broken old umbrella
Lovely old T-shirt
Stormville Flea Market Cancels Opening Weekend
A flea market where people can sell … anything. One person’s junk is another person’d treasure

Tips and ideas:

teabag – mint tea – gets rid of spiders & mice : put on eyes to reduce puffiness

wine cork – floating key ring

banana skin – clean / shine shoes

broken umbrella – a dog coat !

Old T-shirt – cloth for cleaning

Transparent Dog Raincoat Pet Jacket Outdoor Puppy Clothes ...

Never judge a book book by its cover.

Adult Speaking Class, Level 2: Going shopping, looking for a bargain.

7th April 2020

A Guide For Shopping In Macau For All Shopaholics In 2020!
Shopping in Macau

This lesson aims to introduce students to a wider range of vocabulary, phrases and expressions, and then gives them an opportunity to role play and act out the language.

A plan such as this only works with motivated students, and can be very fun for both learners and the teacher.

Print outs or photos of various consumer items will enhance the lesson, but first:

vocabulary

SHOPPING

Which shops do you like and why ?

Use these words and phrases to help you write your answer: 

big, small, fresh, clean, cheap, expensive, near my house, convenient 

range of choice, quality, cost, location, crowded

store layout (what does it look like ? Is it easy to find things ?)

staff helpfulness: average (normal), exceptional, non-existant !

value for money (good quality at a good price)

bargains (good quality and great price)

waitrose-little-wimbledon-convenience-store-interior.gif 700×450 ...
Interior of a Waitrose supermarket in the UK
19 Things You Need To Stop Doing To Grocery Store Workers In The ...
Food shopping is not always a pleasant experience

Haggling

This is the practice of trying to get a better or lower price for an item. This doesn’t happen in shops, which have a fixed price, but is common, indeed even expected, in markets, depending on the location and culture. Be careful – too much haggling can upset the trader.

7 Tips on Haggling in the Arabic World | TravelGeekery
haggling can be an art – there are many guides online

Vocabulary: fixed price / negotiate / bargain / rip-off / no deal !

Expressions: I wasn’t born yesterday / you’re having a laugh !

[I will pre-teach these expressions in a class, but online students will have to look them up. If you ever need help, just leave a message]

Legian, Bali, Indonesia - August 13, 2018: Indonesian Souvenir ...
What do you think is meant by ‘GENUINE FAKE’ ?

Make a conversation:

One is a market-trader, the other a customer.

You can choose the item(s): watch, phone, T-shirt, food etc.

The language is informal, intonation can be strong but still be polite.

EXAMPLE:

Here, the trader sells ‘genuine fake’ sunglasses

Customer: How much are these sunglasses, please ?

Trader: Oh, those are genuine Gucci, made in France. I can let you have for the special price.

Customer: Gucci … really ?

Trader: Absolutely, look … it says ‘Guchi’ here. Try them on … they are perfect for you.

Customer: Hhhmmmm, ‘Guchi’ … OK, how much are they ?

Trader: To you, my first customer, special price. Only $50

Customer: Are you having a laugh ! I’ll give you $5 tops, no more.

Trader: These are genuine Gucci … OK, OK, just for you, $45. They come from France.

Customer: Gucci are ITALIAN ! What a rip-off. I’m out of here.

Amazon.com: Gucci Sunglasses GG 0448 S- 001 Black/Grey: Clothing
Genuine Gucci sunglasses

With a larger class, have three students selling the same type of item but in different setting, for example:

a department store,

Selfridges has just opened its Christmas shop 145 days early

a shop having a sale

Japanese department store makes grovelling apology after ...

and a street market

Brick Lane Market | London Guide | Qbic Hotel

To make it more realistic, the students have to alter their vocabulary to suit the store, that is, polite standard English for the department store, everyday English for the shop and more slang and idioms for the street market.

The items could include:

Handbags:

Beautiful weaved dried water hyacinth lady handbag for sale on the ...
Branded Luxury Handbag Women Bags Designer Handbag Logos Designer ...
Mumu Korean Back Pack Mini Sling Bag Sale Cute Bags Women Ladies ...

Set your own prices to reflect the realities of where you live.

Watches:

Street markets | Xian china | pbruch | Flickr
Mens Wooden Watches for Sale | COBB & Co. USA
Rolex 16233 - Buy and Sell used Rolex Watches and Jewellery in ...
A genuine Rolex

Adult Speaking Class, Level 3, Part 4

27th January 2020

Contents

Adverbs

Conversation practice

Vocabulary practice

Conversation practice

Image result for slow computer


Slow computers

A: My laptop is so slow.
B: Buy a new one.
A: I would if I had the money.
B: Why is it so slow?
A: That’s a good question.
B: Did you take it to a computer shop?
A: I would if I had the money.
B: Well, I guess you have to live with it.
A: Sometimes I want to throw it out the window. wanna
B: You don’t want to do that.
A: Why not?
B: You might hit someone on the head.

Re-write but with smart phone instead of ‘laptop.’

Image result for being broke no money

Being a bit short – not having much or enough money.

A:Can I borrow £5? quid 
B: Sure. Why do you need it?
A: I want to buy lunch.
B: Where’s your money? [Pronunciation: Wheres yah monnnee ?]
A: It’s not in my wallet.
B: Your wallet is empty?
A: I don’t have even one quid in it.
B: Being broke is no fun. [Broke = having no money]
A: Even if it’s only for a short while.
B: It’s always good to have friends.
A: Friends will lend you money when you’re broke.
B: As long as you pay them back.

Write a similar dialogue but with different situations.

Vocabulary practice:

Look up the meaning of these words and expressions, then see how they’re used in the following dialogue.

ubiquitous / incessant / loquacious / laconic 

malodorous / euphoria (euphoric) / sick (unwell, ill)

truly / rather / somewhatquid / brokeyou what ?

Let me shuffle through my memory 

run into / put up with / fun-filled / throughout the city 

that’s a good question / this is the worst ….. in the world !

A You’ll never guess who I ran into last night.

B Who ? I was up to my eyes in work.

A Ms Cam. It was rather a surprise. I haven’t seen her for ages.

B Ms Cam ? Let me shuffle through my memory… oh, yes.

A Remember ? She was somewhat laconic at work, but after beer …

B Absolutely ! She doesn’t shut up ! I had to put up with her stories.

A Same thing last night. Nothing changes. But it was a fun-filled night

B Where’d you take her ? Anywhere fancy ?

A We started at a street bar but it was malodorous, so we took off.

B She drinks like a fish, I recall. What happened ?

A Hmmm … that’s a good question ! I had a few too many.

B That explains it – you look a bit sick. Did you drink cocktails ?

A Oh, did we ! This is the worst hangover in the world !

Image result for worst hangover

TRY to make your own conversation using some of the new vocabulary and expressions.

Ideas: buying something / wanting to go someone / having a bad day

Activity: Plan a day out for my friends.

I have two friends arriving in HCM( or your city). They want a typical, authentic experience. Plan a day for them. It must include:

Thay Paul with Tina and Michael.
  • Breakfast
  • A museum
  • Somewhere for a snack
  • An interesting building or location
  • Lunch
  • Souvenir shopping
  • Something to do in the evening

Give tips and advice. 

How do they travel around ? 

What are their options and estimate the prices.

Try to use as much new vocabulary as possible, words and expressions.

Directions to Pham Ngo Lao Street District 1 // Directions to a city centre street.

Ask for help. Other must offer as much help – how to get there, the best way, the price, the dangers. Body language – distance, expression, intonation, eye contact etc

Also back channelling. Nod your head, say, “Sure,” “Right.” “Oh, really ?”

Small talk …. Try to talk for as long as possible – then change subjects:

your home town / your favourite holiday / a great place to visit in your city / some great things about children / some terrible things about your city / family / favourite hobby.

Past simple/ past continuous

Look at the house map – say where you were last night and what you were doing

Image result for house floor plans

EXAMPLE: I was on the balcony, watering my plants.

I was in the bedroom, …………………

Famous for 15 minutes

Image result for famous for 15 minutes

Pretend you are famous – your partner will interview you on: 

Sai Gon Today ! A live chat show from your work or school !

FIRST – why are YOU famous – what do you like doing best ?

Think of 6 questions. Examples:

When did you start ? When did you win your first award ? What was it like travelling to USA ? What are your plans for the future.

Who else works in a TV studio ? What equipment do we need to make a show ?

Adverbs of degree

very / so / extremely / = high, a lot

quite / somewhat = moderate / medium

Tokyo is ……….. expensive, while for Vietnamese people, Thailand can be ……………. expensive.

The test was …………….. (medium) difficult.

I ……… liked the film, but the book was better, it was …………….. good.

Free Speaking

Have you ever thought about trying or learning something new ?

Do you want to take up a new sport ? Start up a new business ?

Join up for a club ? Learn a new skill ?

Try to use some of the following phrases:

The job is repetitive ? It can be somewhat tedious.

Working everyday can have a negative effect on our health.

I feel it is not suitable for me. I am not suited to it.

My background is in engineering; I have no experience in business.

I may regret it if I don’t try – but it is a risk. Always a risk because it may be unsuccessful – it may fail.

Related image

Adult Speaking Class, level 3, Part 2.

26th January 2020

Contents

Sentence order – exercises for you to practice rearranging the words in a sentence to make your English more interesting. This is especially useful for IELTS students.

Vocabulary – a feature just on boosting your command of the English language, and finding higher, or better, low-frequency words for basic English.

Vocabulary

Image result for asian girl with thesaurus

Objectives:

Increase vocabulary. The average native-speaker uses about 2 000 words. You can boost your vocabulary by learning verbs, adverbs and adjectives which can be easily found by a Google search. Also, use an online thesaurus.

Speak in longer sentences. Say what you want to say (make your point), then elaborate by giving examples, adding reasons and maybe an anecdote. Along with this, give the opposite view by using conjunctions such as ‘however’, ‘on the other hand’ etc.

Pronunciation. Many native speakers have a problem understanding English learners, so we will practise slow and careful enunciation, intonation and stress.

New vocabulary:

Look up any words you don’t know.

demonstrate / protest / gripping / predictable/ disappointing / media / 

excessive/ biased / appropriate / opponent / in opposition to / beat / currently / not my cup of tea 

hold your horses / debate / borrow / lend / expect / lease / terrible

Which words would you employ / use ?

Brazil beating Costa Rica was ……..

This film is extremely violent, it’s not ………. for children.

The politicians are ………. the issue of land-………. to the Chinese.

You can ……. money from a bank, but they …… it at a high interest rate.

The match was so ………… However, Spain – Portugal was ………

The man said Ha Noi was the best city, but he is from there so he is ……….

People were on the streets ………. and ………… against higher taxes.

The man went to prison for forty years just for littering. That was ………….

I haven’t finished yet, ……………………..

TV, radio, internet news and newspapers are called the ……..

Image result for uk sunday papers

New vocabulary:

aggravate – to make worse

tensions – bad feelings

keep a lid on it – stop something getting worse, or not to tell someone. We’ve got a new boss coming, but keep a lid on it (don’t tell anyone).

set up – start to do something. Fred is going to set up a new business.

knock out – (from boxing) to hit someone so they fall and stay down for 10 seconds

  • to eliminate someone / thing
Image result for henry cooper knocks out ali

Historically (adverb from history) – something that has happened over a long time.

They are currently ——– between China and Vietnam. This is nothing new as —— the two countries have had conflicts.

The government are introducing policies to ———— on inflation (prices rising).

President Trump visited North Korea to ease ——- between the two countries. He must be careful what he says or he may ———— the situation.

Image result for president trump in north korea

England have ———– Colombia so I am ———(a great word for happy). However, the greatest shock was Germany being ———— at the group stage.

Image result for england colombia world cup

The coverage in the Chinese media is not impartial, it is unbelievably ——— . However, this is nothing new; the media is the USA is also ———- towards either the left or right.

Image result for biased chinese news
Image result for fox news meme

Project: Look at these headlines from the UK media. Could they happen in your country ?

Image result for prince andrew headline

A story about the Queen’s second son, Prince Andrew, and a sex scandal.

Image result for worst sun headline

A left-wing paper writing about a right-wing Prime Minister.

Image result for worst sun headline

Calling the England football manager a ‘turnip-head’.

Changing sentence order:

John read comic books as a boy. As a boy, John read comic books.

Mary sent two emails then went home. Mary went home after sending two emails.

Try changing these:

Watt worked as a maker of mathematical instruments but later found himself working with steam engines.

If we had to give credit to one inventor, it would probably be Karl Benz from Germany. Many suggest that he created the first true automobile in 1885/1886.

Sherlock Holmes is a fictional private detective created by British author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Japan’s high speed bullet trains, also known as Shinkansen trains, offer visitors an experience like no other with speeds reaching up to 320 km/hr !

Image result for shinkansen
Image result for james watt steam engine

James Watt and the steam engine.

IELTS: Hello, India

24th January for 30th January 2020. IELTS Bands 4 – 5.5 Unit 7

Image result for hello India

Firstly, a big hello to all my readers and followers in India. Yesterday I had over fifty visits from students from the sub-continent and I want you all to know how much I appreciate you taking the time to check out my blog. Thank you so much.

My Indian friends – what is the standard of behaviour in your classrooms ? In my centre, in Sai Gon, Vietnam, we have to employ classroom management (normally reserved for ‘young learners’) to adults. Namely, we have to continually tell the class:

No mobile / cell-phones in the classroom UNLESS it has been sanctioned by the teacher for educational purposes.

No eating, chewing gum, slurping drinks

NO CHATTING WHILE THE TEACHER IS TALKING. THE TEACHER IS HERE TO HELP YOU. FURTHERMORE, IN MOST CULTURES, THIS IS UNBELIEVABLY RUDE AND UNACCEPTABLE.

Take notes, write down new words, practice using them

The teacher is here to help YOU learn. We are not here to entertain you.

These are not MY rules – they are the rules of the centre. If you cannot abide by them, then stop coming to class, stop wasting everyone’s time and money.

Let’s leave the last word to Uncle Ho, bác hồ:

I'm very moved to be here today, ... Our lives are now much better, but Vietnam remains a very poor country. We need to work much harder. - Ho Chi Minh

Understand, my Vietnamese classes ? Even Uncle Ho says you,

“need to work much harder.”

And now, without further ado, a warm up exercise to see how much the class has remembered from the last lesson … if anything.

Firstly, complete these phrases and then use them in sentences:

over the ______ // under the ________ // under ________ // more or ________

I’m over the …… because I passed my IELTS test.

Ms Linh is not here, she’s feeling under ………..

The class understood the video, more ……..

So many tests at school, the pupils were under ………

Secondly, what do these words mean, the make a short sentence using them:

absent-minded / jovial / reside / miserable / attain

Image result for Indian culture

I shall try to incorporate some teaching points about India in this blog which, although written before the Lunar New Year (Tet Holiday), is for next week.

The above sentence is an example of the type of English that is expected in order to pass the IELTS exam. As you can plainly see, it isn’t too difficult; I inserted a low-frequency word (‘incorporate‘), used a relative pronoun (‘which‘) in order to make the sentence longer and more fluent, then employed a discourse marker (‘although‘) to link contrasting ideas together in a coherent sentence.

To recap, what you will need to use in both writing and speaking are:

adjectives (but not just the most basic, common ones)

adverbs

low-frequency vocabulary

complex sentences (introduce extra information in supporting clauses)

stress and intonation

Adjectives: describe what you see here:

Image result for Indian culture

Try these adjectives:

exotic / mysterious / exquisite / captivating / enchanting

Sentence building: Talk fluently and coherently.

Compare and contrast:

Image result for Indian city scene

Does this look like YOUR city ? What is similar, what is noticeably different ?

Image result for Indian train station
A typical commute to work ?

Vocabulary building and listening

In the real world, most students will not be communicating with English-language teachers, but probably with other non-native speakers, so learning to appreciate and understand English spoken with a ‘new’ accent is an extremely useful skill. Here’s a great video which features a charming young Indian lady teaching new vocabulary: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PKUxuD0m5A8

New Vocabulary:

Instead of using ‘very’ + adjective (I am very tired), use a single word:

Try to use ‘sagacious’, ‘exquisite’, ‘colossal’ and ‘spacious’

The classrooms in Block D are ……….. (big)

The furnishings are perfect, they are ……….

Building an underground train network is a ………… undertaking

The old man was ………. People came to him for advise.

This is also a listening skills exercise. 

  • Do you have any problems understanding her ? Why ?

What to do in India

The American foodie and blogger Mark Wiens travelled to Kolkata: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AvNdOJMDMyQ

Image result for mark wiens in india

Listen for at least five words you didn’t previously know. In small groups ask each other:

What impressed you ? What disturbed you ? Would you like to go there ? If so, why, if not, why not ?

Here is a chance to practice adjectives, linking words and using the word ‘because’ – giving reasons, supporting your comments.

Famous Indians

In small groups, you have to make a short presentation about one of these famous Indians:

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Mahatma Gandhi
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Siddharta – the Buddha
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Kalpana Chawla

The class have five to ten minutes to research information, speed read and extract relevant facts with which to enlighten the class. Simply reading straight from Wikipedia is not permitted.

And now, goodbye from this mysterious, exotic land. Hope to meet you very soon …

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Adult Speaking Class. Theme: Love and marriage

11th January 2020

Love and marriage

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Idioms, collocations, expressions, phrasal verbs

tie the knot / getting spliced / = getting married

(collocation – to get married)

He went down on one knee and popped the question = proposed.

It was love at first sight. She knew he was Mr Right.

He proposed but she turned him down = he asked but she said ‘no.’

They changed their minds, he got cold feet now they have called off the wedding.

I love weddings; it’s a chance to dress up and show off.

How do these differ ?

Going on a date / going out / meeting for coffee 

Philipe and Julie have been ………. for five months (they have been dating)

You want to speak more with someone as a friend

You want to meet someone alone, and maybe start a romantic relationship

FREE SPEAKING

What’s the best thing about being in a relationship? What’s the best thing about being single? 

What headings would you put these under ?

Life is more fun than being alone. Problems are easier to solve.

We have total, 100% freedom ! Do what we want, when we want.

We have less responsibility.

No lonliness

If you meet someone you like, you can ask them out on a date.

There’s a time to play and a time to settle down and raise a family.

No in-laws !

How do couples meet ?

How did you meet your: wife / husband / boyfriend / girlfriend / partner ?

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Listening practice: How did these couples meet ? This video was shot (filmed) in New York, so it will be American English: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6rYRyoqpeI

New Vocabulary

Make sentences based on the pictures:

shocked / delighted / lonely / frustrated /overwhelmed /surprised / confused / relieved

Remember: you can increase sentences by using adjectives – just say what you see. Basic adjectives such as colours, sizes or materials will all add to your word count and make your speech more interesting (as well as improving scores in tests).

How does the woman feel ? What does she look like ? What is she wearing ?

I was delighted when I received your wedding invitation. (FIRST PERSON ‘I’, or use the THIRD PERSON – he/she/it/ a name)

The lady was delighted.

The young lady was delighted.

The beautiful young lady with long straight blonde hair, and wearing a pretty pink top, was delighted.

The young woman, who has long straight blonde hair, was delighted by the invitation.

Now you try:

Blind date TV show (this is from UK 1994)

Do you have game shows like this is your country ? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dj_ewz53Frk

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Blind Date game:

Look at the photos of the three men and three women.

Read their likes and dislikes, and what they want out of life. 

Try to arrange matches.

How successful will the dates be, do you think ?

PETER. Age 46. Lawyer. Likes cooking, travelling, wine, driving, tennis. Divorced, 2 children. Looks for quiet lady with no children, to look after the house and him.

JAMES. Age 26. IT worker. Likes music, dancing, going to clubs, beach holidays. Single. Looks for young lady who is loud and fun, likes to party.

David. Age 22. Model. Likes fashion, clothes, cocktail bars, smoking cigars. Looking for a women who is a model so we can look great together. Must be very beautiful and wear expensive clothes.

And now the ladies: which woman would be the best match for these men ?

Jane. Age 22. Likes fashion, clubbing, kittens, holidays in the sun. Looks for a man with a steady job and ‘down-to-earth’. Non-smoker only.

Lisa. 28. Banker. Likes quiet restaurants, badminton, travelling. Looks for a mature man with good income for long term relationship. No boys, please !

Emily. 20. Likes dancing, fashion, going out with my friends. Movies. Wants a young, cute boy-friend so we can go to parties together. No boring old men, please !

If the dates are successful, they could lead to weddings, married life and children … but we’ll save that for the next blog. In the meantime, here’s some clips of when the big day doesn’t go to plan. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NCkcU9h5ggc

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