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Sunday, September 30, 2012

Spring Equinox


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-03/15/content_1963990.htm

Practice the conversation; study the vocabulary; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. What do you know about Easter? Tell it in your own words.
2. Does your culture have a special celebration for Spring Equinox? If so, what do you do?
3. As you read this, what will come next, a full moon or a new moon? Learn more about the moon's phases (first quarter, last quarter, waxing, waning, etc.)

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Fractions


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-03/12/content_1959253.htm

Practice the conversation; study the vocabulary; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. Do you have a good understanding of fractions? Talk about your experience learning about them.
2. What's a numerator? A denominator?
3. Write down several fractions and practice saying them in English.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Aesop


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-03/08/content_1954873.htm

Practice the conversation; study the vocabulary; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. Do you know any stories by Aesop? Tell one or two.
2. Do you think that telling stories is a good way to teach moral lessons?
3. How is it possible to have a group of stories by "Aesop," but people aren't really sure if Aesop was a real person?

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Habitats


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-03/05/content_1950613.htm

Practice the conversation; study the vocabulary; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. What kind of habitat do you live in (or near)? Mountains? Seashore? Something else?
2. What's your favorite habitat?
3. What do you do for "ecology"?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Dutch Boy and the Dike


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-03/01/content_1945826.htm

Practice the conversation; study the vocabulary; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. Have you ever heard this story before? Tell it in your own words.
2. What do you think is the "lesson" in the Dutch Boy story? Do you know any other stories that teach the same lesson?
3. Roberto calls Mark a "mythbuster," someone who discovers that "commonly held beliefs" are not true. Do you know of some "myths" that have been "busted"?

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Beatles


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-02/27/content_1941668.htm

Practice the conversation; study the vocabulary; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. Do you know any songs by the Beatles? Sing one!
2. Are there any other "groundbreaking" bands or musicians you can think of? What about other artists?
3. Find a picture of the Beatles from their early days. Do you find their hairstyles shocking? Why or why not?

Monday, September 24, 2012

The Body's Joints


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-02/23/content_1937786.htm

Practice the conversation; study the vocabulary; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. Point to each of the joints in the article on your own or a friend's body.
2. Use some of the English idioms in this article in sentences. Create and practice role plays with a friend.
3. Are there idioms in your language using various joints? Translate them into English.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Times of Day


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-02/20/content_1933709.htm

Practice the conversation; study the vocabulary; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. What time are "sunup" and "sundown" these days?
2. What time of day are you reading this: morning? afternoon? evening? night?
3. Think about the expression, "You're killin' me!" In what situations could you use it? Role play some with a friend.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

More Networking Terms


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-02/16/content_1928808.htm

Practice the conversation; study the notes; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. Can you give examples of a "meme"?
2. Have you seen the "Lolcats"? If so, what do you think of them? (If not, look them up!)
3. Are you (sometimes) a "lurker"? Where do you "lurk"?

Friday, September 21, 2012

Social Networking


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-02/13/content_1924814.htm

Practice the conversation; study the notes; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. If you use social networking sites, do you use your real face for an avatar? If not, what do you use? If you DON'T use such sites, what would you use?
2. Do you use any social networking sites? If so, how many friends (fans, followers) do you have? What's a good way to get more?
3. What's "trending" on the internet right now?

Thursday, September 20, 2012

The Common Kitchen 2


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-02/09/content_1920984.htm

Practice the conversation; study the notes; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. Same question as for Part 1: Which of these appliances do you have in your kitchen? Which seem useful? Which seem unnecessary?
2. In your own words, describe the difference between a "toaster" and a "toaster oven."
3. What does Roberto mean when he says "I'll never tell"? Describe what's going on there.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The Common Kitchen 1


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-02/06/content_1917321.htm

Practice the conversation; study the notes; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. Which of these appliances do you have in your kitchen?
2. Do you (or does anyone you know) cook on a wood stove? Have you ever cooked on a fire outdoors?
3. Which of the appliances named are used for cooking? Which for storage? And which for taking care of garbage?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Branches of Science


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-02/02/content_1914333.htm

Practice the conversation; study the notes; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. How do you say each of these in your language: biology, botany, zoology, microbiology, chemistry, physics, astronomy, oceanography?
2. Do you like science? Why or why not? Are you "good at it"?
3. Do you understand the joke about "What did I do this time?" Why is it funny (or not)?

Monday, September 17, 2012

Big Numbers


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-01/30/content_1911438.htm

Practice the conversation; study the notes; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. Do you divide numbers the same way we do in English: every three numbers, counting from the right?
2. How do you say these numbers in your language: hundred, thousand, million, billion, trillion?
3. Write some more long numbers (7 or more digits) and practice saying them correctly in English. Be sure to use some zeroes in different places

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Visiting Japan


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-01/19/content_1908257.htm

Practice the conversation; study the notes; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. Do you know anything about anime, manga, and cosplay? Talk about them.
2. Have you ever ridden a bullet train, or any other fast train? How are they different from regular trains?
3. Have you ever been to hot springs, or stayed in a traditional inn (in any country)? What's it like?

Saturday, September 15, 2012

The Big Bang Theory


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-01/16/content_1905054.htm

Practice the conversation; study the notes; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. Have you seen "The Big Bang Theory"? What do you think of it?
2. Do you know any "nerds"? Are they funny?
3. Do you ever watch TV shows on your computer? How do you get them: download, streaming, on DVD?

Friday, September 14, 2012

Longitude


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-01/12/content_1901464.htm

Practice the conversation; study the notes; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. What is the longitude where you live? Give degrees, minutes, and seconds, if possible.
2. Which hemisphere do you live in, north or south? East or west?
3. How do you show the time of day in your language, like the "a.m." and "p.m." in English?

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Zones, Solstices, and Equinoxes


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-01/09/content_1896908.htm

Practice the conversation; study the notes; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. Which "zone" do you live in?
2. As you read this, what is the nearest date of an equinox or solstice?
3. Does your culture have any special celebrations for equinoxes or solstices? If so, talk about them.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Latitude


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-01/05/content_1892576.htm

Practice the conversation; study the notes; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. What is the latitude where you live? Give degrees, minutes, and seconds, if possible.
2. Seven places are mentioned: North Pole, Arctic Circle, etc. Between which two do you live?
3. What is Antonio's native language? Do you know any words in that language (besides "Adios")?

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Little Red Riding Hood


Lesson from the Shenzhen Daily:
http://szdaily.sznews.com/html/2012-01/02/content_1889307.htm

Practice the conversation; study the notes; then discuss the questions with a friend in English.

Questions:
1. Have you seen the film "Little Red Riding Hood," or read the story? What do you think of either one?
2. Who do you think is a good example of a "hottie"? Why do you think so?
3. Do you usually like "chick flicks"?