A very warm welcome to my Advanced English language course - English 501. I feel privileged and eternally humbled by you choosing me to be your English teacher (among the millions of teachers in the world).
In each lesson we will be working on developing your listening, speaking, reading and writing skills together with some vocabulary, pronunciation and/or grammar work. I will also make sure I incorporate real-life English into each lesson - be it a podcast, a blog post, a newspaper article along with some material from textbooks that I love. Each lesson will also have tasks that you will be sending to my email firstname.lastname@example.org or What's app +64211268243 (whichever is more convenient for you) and getting feedback on. I am very open to any suggestions and feedback so please never hesitate to get in touch if there is any questions. Please allow me a couple of days to check your homework.
Let’s get started.
Task 1 (reading + speaking + vocabulary): Read the blog post by Meghan about her trip to Boomerang Beach, New South Wales, Australia. Check the meaning of all the new words and expressions (that is preferable - trying to remember not just the single word but a word in a combination with others). Then record your audio answers to the questions I'm asking below and send the file to me. Try to use the new vocabulary you have just learnt. It's a lot of questions so if you have time you can answer all of them or just choose 4 or 5, it's absolutely fine.
1) When was the last time you felt uninspired tedium creeping up on you?
2) Do you agree that people showcase only the most euphoric moments of their lives on Social Media? Is it a good thing or a bad thing?
3) Do you agree that switching off is a rare and coveted thing these days? What do you usually do to unwind and switch off?
4) After reading this blog post how would you describe the classic Australian beach holiday?
5) What does Meghan mean when she says that the house is the entertainment?
6) After looking at the pictures of the house what is your favourite room and why?
7) Is the house workaholic friendly? What makes you think so?
8) Have you ever measured a holiday home by its ability to make you crave actually living there full-time?
9) Did any of the brunch/lunch/dinner places catch your fancy? Which one?
Task 2 (listening): In her blog post there is a part where Meghan talks about childhood memories.
So in task 2 today we are going to talk about childhood memories. Listen to five people talking about their earliest memories. Match the speakers to the emotions they felt at the time.
surprise sadness fear disappointment happiness
Listen again. How old was each person? What was their memory?
To check yourself you can now look at the script of this audio and listen to it again - as many times as you think is necessary. ALWAYS listen first without looking at the script - this will improve your listening skills.
Task 3 (listening): Now you are going to hear about some research which has been done into first memories. Before you listen answer the questions to yourself.
1. How far back in our lives can we usually remember?
a. To when we were a baby (0-2 years old)
b. To when we were a toddler (2-4 years old)
c. To when we were a small child (5+)
2. Why can’t we remember things before that age?
3. What kind of a) emotions and b) events might people be more likely to remember?
4. Are our first memories mostly visual or of sounds and smells?
5. Why might some people’s first memories be unreliable?
Now listen and check your answers with the speaker. Were you surprised by anything?
Task 4 (listening + writing): Now listen to the story of Jean Piaget’s first memory and write down what you think are the key words. Listen again and try to add more detail. Then write down a short recollection of what you’ve heard – please send it to me.
Task 5 (vocabulary): Abstract nouns.
OK - one last thing before we all go - I've given you here quite a lot of work to do just so that those who want an intensive course have enough material to work with and a good value for money. Don't feel like you have to do each and every task - I know we all have busy lives - kids, jobs, husbands, other hobbies. So don't feel bad about not doing all of the tasks- do whatever you can at your own pace, and even if you do a bit regularly you will see improvement in your English.
Now, well done, this is the end of the sample lesson.