Adult Speaking Class, Level 3: Small talk, and talking about music

31st July 2020

What is Small Talk? (with pictures)

Small talk

Basic friendly conversations used with work colleagues, people we don’t know very well or people we have just met.

Did you see the news on TV last night ?

How long have you worked here ?

The traffic was so bad this morning.

The weather is very cool for this time of year.

Echo questions 

A continuation of small talk, we use these to show interest in what someone has just said to us. Here, John speaks to his Vietnamese co-worker Ms Tuyen:

John: I can speak German.

Ms Tuyen: Can you ? (What other languages can you speak ?)

John: Ms Nguyen went to Thailand.

Ms Tuyen: Did she ? (Did she go on holiday or for work ?)

Now … your turn. Add the echo question, then try to ask a follow-up question.

He likes K-pop

We are going to the pagoda later.

Ms Thinh has a new job.

T-ara và những lần đến Việt Nam đầy ấn tượng - tintuckpop.net
Thay Paul loves T-ara. Does he ?

Keep conversations going:

Talk about: 

house prices in your city / favourite hobby / your hometown / 

why you have OR don’t have a pet / an interesting program you saw recently

What you want to do in the future.

Small talk language:

I see  / Do you really think so ? 

That’s a good point /  I hadn’t thought of that 

Oh, that’s interesting / May I just add something ?  /

Oh, where is that exactly ? / Yeah, right ! / Sure / OK 

Try some scenarios:

Directions to the city centre (or choose a location in your city).

One student is a tourist, the other is a local 

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 channeling (expressions such as “Oh, right,” “OK, yeah,” “Really, that’s great.”

Music – What do you like ?

I love it / adore it / enjoy it / I hate it / I can’t stand it 

I’m really into … / I’m keen on //

I’m not into … / I’m not keen on

I quite like / I don’t mind

makes me want to dance // Oh, turn it off !

Vocabulary:

catchy / cheerful / lively / melodic / melancholy (sad music)/ moving / repetitive rhythmic / tuneless / unusual

World Music:

3 clips – which do you like – discuss and answer in full sentences uses opinion expressions:

Denis Aziz ‘A la li la

Rudolpho ‘La Colegiala 

Sainkho Namtchylak

Adult Class, Level 3: Sentence building

15th December for 17 – 19th December 2019

Warm up. Describe what happens in this video.

How to ride a motorbike (?):

New expressions:

under the table (giving money to get something done quickly) / over the top (something that is too much or a person behaving too loudly).

In Asia, giving money under the table is, sometimes, the only way to get something done.

In USA many TV presenters are so loud, they are completely over the top.

Building longer sentences:

Make these simple sentences into a longer piece by using discourse markers, adjectives and adverbs and opinion phrases:

I work at ATS. My job make me tired. I have many projects to do. My co-workers are nice.

Relative pronouns– who (person), which (thing), where (place). 

Adverbs– add information

Opinions– I feel, I believe, in my opinion, from my point of view. 

Discourse markers – although, despite, however …

ATS, where I work, can be extremely tiring because there are many projects which, I feel, are very challenging. Having said that, there are many wonderfully friendly colleagues who make me feel happy.

Write a short piece about your school, university or work:

Sentence building:

although / despite / albeit

Can be used like ‘but’ and ‘however’. .. sentence structure may need to change:

Peter likes driving although he hates traffic. ONE sentence

Although he hates traffic, Peter loves driving. TWO clauses

King BBQ is very good albeit very busy NEVER starts a sentence

Despite being very busy, King BBQ is great. NOTE despite + verbing

King BBQ is great despite being very busy (or costing very much / having no beer.)

We love our jobs despite the fact that we have to work long hours.

Write longer sentences using albeit, although or despite.

T_ara are adorable. Their music is nothing special.

Vietjet is cheap. The flights are frequently delayed.

Korea is beautiful. The weather can be cold. (Also add adverbs)

Rolex watches are astronomical. They are good quality

Image result for vietjet advery girl"

Music vocabulary:

Image result for types of music"

rhythm / beat / melody / production / arrangement / vocals / lyrics / solo

singer / vocalist /lead guitarist / rhythm guitarist / bass / drummer / keyboards backing singer / orchestration

Genres (types of music): pop / rock / country and western / punk / classical / jazz blues / opera / R ‘n’ B / techno / rap

What kind of music do you like ? Ask your classmates, and try to keep the conversation alive for as long as possible. You can say what genres you like, then give examples of artists and special CDs or records. How do you buy music, how do you listen to it (computer, CD, iPhone, MP3 player ?) Do you play an instrument ? Would you like to play something ? Do you ever go to concerts ?

Phrasal verbs:

give in / turn off / start off / put out / cut down/ cut out/ put up with

1 I’m working too much, therefore I must _________ on my hours.

2 You can’t smoke here ! ____________ that cigarette.

3 We have to _________ so much noise and dirt here in Cat Lai (industrial area).

4 I always __________ to my wife when she demands something; it is easier !

5 Time to knock off. Before you go, make sure to _________ your computers.

6 For health reasons, my doctor advised me to _________ fatty food.

7 The film ___________ great, but soon became too complicated.

Speaking practice:

Image result for job interview in cairo"

You are at a job interview and have to introduce yourself. Start by giving some facts, your educational background and how long you have worked in your current/ present job. Describe your personality and finish by saying what you like to do in your spare time.

Example:

I was born in …. and I graduated from …. University in 2019 with a major in Business Administration. Since then I’ve had two year’s experience in administrative work at ATHA and followed that with a stint in SLH Corporation.

I’m a very organised person, well-balanced and efficient. I’m hard-working and dedicated.

In my free time, I like to travel and I love to paint. In addition, I enjoy going out and having coffee with friends. I also support Barcelona and enjoy playing badminton after work.

Vocabulary booster:

I live in a:

 quiet, residential street. Peaceful at night.

lively and busy commercial area, many shops

dirty and dusty industrial part of town. Very noisy.

My home is a / an:

apartment and I live alone

rented room share with friends

house live with family

pros and cons – advantages and disadvantages

adverbs of degree (very, extremely, incredibly, remarkably, unbelievably) 

I travel to work by:

Motorbike. It’s quite / rather far and extremely stressful.

Use Grabbike. It’s very convenient albeit rather expensive.

On the bus. Although it’s incredibly cheap, it’s not very pleasant.

Idioms and expressions

At work I find myself doing the same thing day in day out. It’s tedious.

Learning English is, for me, easy, a piece of cake. It’s very important and fun.

In my free time:

I enjoy watching films and playing sports. I am competitive !

adore hanging out with my friends and family.

love shopping. I can spot a bargain and I hate being ripped off !

Learning English:

in my opinion, is vital for the future. It’s imperative we learn.

is a necessary task. It’s awkward and frustrating, but I need it.

is highly enjoyable and relaxing. I love to improve my mind.

The War Remnants Museum is

Image result for war museum saigon"

extremely popular with tourists, a major attraction in the city.

well laid-out and organised. The exhibits are fascinating.

very sombre and thought-provoking. Well worth a visit.

educational and essential. We can discover much there.

not suitable for children, though I would recommend it to adults.

Increase your word power

Part 1: Match the basic words with others of similar meaning

For example boring = tedious

interesting / on time / forgetful / live (I live in) / smart (clever) / get (by hard work) attain / absent-minded /fascinating / punctual / intelligent / reside

Part 2

unhappy / honest / not often / tired / place / reliable // exhausted / seldom / miserable / trustworthy / dependable / environment

Part 3

small or unimportant / try / make / great / happy / not nice / / endeavour / jovial / prepare / insignificant / nasty / brilliant

Practice:

John is so forgetful; he is _______________

German manufacturers are reliable; they are ____________

The increase is very small; it is _______________

The plane was on time; the service is very _____________

She is so clever; she is very ______________

Now make sentences with the new words. Put class into teams and they have to make sentences with five new words e.g. (for example):

After studying for three years, John attained his BA Degree.

Use these phrasal verbs in new sentences – BUT in the past or continuous tense.

give in / give up / put up with / put off / take off / start off

New Vocabulary

passive smoking 

nightmare situation 

how can I put it ? 

a fair comment ? 

peer pressure ? 

emulate

inconsistent

willing = happy to do something

luke-warm

concise = short and to the point.

sneaky = crafty, cheeky 

I am __________ to help you with your homework.

Please be short and _________ when you give a speech.

The audience was only _____________ after the band played.

People can get cancer just by _________________ .

I have so much work to do and have a meeting with my boss; it’s a ______________

Speaking skills:

Image result for london metro newspaper"

Discuss a news story from today’s ‘London Metro’ http://metro.co.uk/

The ‘Metro’ is a free newspaper, available at stations and main streets in many cities over the world.