While Thanksgiving is not celebrated in Hong Kong, the activities on THIS PAGE can help you find out about this festival – and improve your English at the same time!
We’re all in this together
One of the readings in class today said “For most people, the truth about genetically engineered food is hard to swallow.” This is a reminder that as well as understanding the vocabulary itself, you must be aware of the meanings of idioms and phrases. If something is “hard to swallow”, it means it is difficult to believe. You can look up the meanings of idioms using a web site such as The Free Dictionary. English Club Online also has a great reference sections with explanations for phrasal verbs and slang as well as idioms. There is also a board outside the English Centre with idioms related to a certain theme. This week it is “green”. Just what does it mean to “go green”?
Over the next few months you will be reading a lot in SCMP and other newspapers about climate change. The 15th International Climate Change Conference will be held in December in Copenhagen. A new report on Behind The News explains this in simple English. It’s a good way to learn some of the vocabulary you might need to understand more difficult articles.
This : http://www.ldoceonline.com/ is a useful online dictionary. There are also daily activities to help develop your vocabulary. It may be American, but it does help.
There are many sources at school you can use to understand the meanings of words. http://dictionary.reference.com/ is an online resource that also has a link to a thesaurus. There are also a number of dictionaries available in the ESL room. You should buy one to keep at home as well – it’s a great way to gradually learn new words.
In the game of “Concentration”, half the cards have a word we are studying and the other half have a definition of that term. The cards are turned upside down, and a grid (like a Street directory) is added. Students take turns to call out two cards. If these match, they are kept. If not, they are turned back over and it is the next person’s turn. We have been playing the game in teams. This helps with speaking and listening as well.