Fri, 13 December 2013
Abiedemi and Todd talk about how people prefer to watch movies in her country.
Go to elllo.org for the full transcript, vocabulary, and activities that go with this lesson.
Thu, 5 December 2013
Vesna talks about Pula Croatia.
Go to elllo.org for the full transcript and lesson with vocabulary.
Wed, 30 October 2013
In the spirit of Halloween, we talk about scary movies. Listen to Akane tell Ruth how she feels about horror films.
Go to elllo.org for the full lesson.
Ruth: So Akane, is there anything that you’re frightened of?
Akane: Well… I’m, I’m really scared of horror movies. I never watch them, cuz they really really frighten me.
Ruth: Horror movies wow. Have your ever seen a horror movie?
Akane: Well, um, when I was little I used to watch them with my friends, because, back in the 80’s, horror movies used to be really popular. Like ah “Jason”, and “Freddy Cruger”. (Oh yeah) and things like that yeah. But ah, they used to keep me up at night and I couldn’t sleep.
Ruth: Yeah, my friend actually had a “Freddy Cruger” poster. It used to frighten me.
Akane: Did she?
Ruth: Yeah, it wasn’t my favorite. So, ah, what don’t you like about horror movies?
Akane: Well, um, I think, I think uh, I don’t know, I think it’s the psychological aspect of it. They just really make me feel scared.
Ruth: Ah, heh.. What was the last horror movie that you watched?
Akane: Um, the last one I watched was, I think it was the “Blair Witch Project”.
Ruth: Oh I know that film, yeah
.Akane: The first one, I saw it in the theatre with my friend. And I couldn’t sleep properly for a week after that.
Ruth: Oh no!
Akane: Ya, I mean, I know it’s stupid. A lot of people think it’s a pretty stupid movie. Um, but I think it was just, just the psychological aspect of it that really made me feel scared. And uh, I think, with that movie, after people saw it, they weren’t really sure whether it was real or not.
Ruth: Oh yeah.
Akane: And so there was that element as, as well.
Ruth: Was that the same film that I’m thinking of. The one where they filmed people in a forest, is that right?
Akane: Yeah, that’s right. It was in a forest. And the whole thing was done with a camcorder. A hand held camcorder. And so, it was, a lot of it was, I think, black and white. I can’t remember. And uh, and the camera was very shaky, and…
Ruth: So it wasn’t professionally filmed?
Akane: Um, I guess it didn’t look like it was.
Akane: Yeah, I heard that the movie actually only took um, It didn’t take a lot of money to film it. But it, it made a lot of money.
Ruth: Yeah, I can believe that actually, I can believe that. Well, thanks for that.
Wed, 30 October 2013
Happy Halloween. This week we listen to an older recording of Mike and Adrienne talking about Halloween.
Go to elllo.org for the complete lesson.
Transcript of the Conversation:
Todd: OK, guys we're going to talk about Halloween. So, what do you think about Halloween?
Adrienne: I actually like it. It's a fun holiday for kids especially because you get to dress up in costumes and you get lots of candy if you go trick-or-treating. I have a lot of good memories. of Halloween growing up.
Todd: OK, what is trick-or-treating? Why do you trick-or-treat?
Adrienne: Trick-or-treat is when you go, you dress up in your costume on Halloween and you go door-to-door ringing doorbells, knocking on doors. One person comes to the door, you say, "Trick-or-treat" and usually these days they give you a treat which is candy or apples or something like that but in the older days, you could, if they didn't give you a treat, then you could play a trick on them or they could play a trick on you, instead of giving you a treat, something like that.
Mike: I always thought that it was they performed, the person at the door performed some kind of trick for the kids because they didn't have candy to give, but I could be wrong.
Adrienne: Yeah, I don't know exactly. It's one of those three options.
Todd: Yeah, I think it's you play a trick on them.
Mike: Oh, really
Todd: You throw trash against their house.
Adrienne: Toilet paper their.
Todd: Toilet paper, eggs,
Mike: Egg their window.
Todd: Dog pooh in the paper bag on fire. On fire!
Todd: Yeah, that's gross. So, Mike, you're from Canada, so do you have Halloween American-style in Canada? Do you celebrate trick-or-treating? Do you do trick-or-treating?
Mike: Oh, yeah, I think it is the same as in the U.S. I believe it is a little bit different in Europe, maybe. They don't have the same kind of traditions but, yeah, exactly the same as in the U.S. We watched all the Snoopy, Charlie Brown Halloween kind of things, just like everybody....
Todd: OK. That's good. I'm glad because now we can diverge. What was, what were your costumes when you were younger?
Adrienne: Ah, I had so many. My mom was a seamstress so she used to make a lot of my costumes. I designed them and she would make them for me and my sister so one year I was bat girl, another year I was Wonder Woman. Another year I was Princess Lea from Star Wars, I was a rainbow and a clown and a cat, and a witch and everything, basically that you're supposed to be for Halloween I was.
Todd: A lot of heroines in there.
Adrienne: Of course. Strong women!
Todd: Mike, how about you?
Mike: I was goat boy.
Todd: Goat boy!
Mike: I was always goat boy because there...
Todd: Every year?
Mike: Yeah, we, I couldn't afford to get a decent costume every year.
Todd: So how were you goat boy? What did you look like?
Adrienne: Where did you get goat boy from?
Mike: They just put some sort of, they put a lot of trash on me, and forced me to eat a can. It's OK.
I got lots of candy but then the other kids would beat me up and steal it from me. That's OK.
Adrienne: That's the saddest thing I've ever heard.
Mike: Well, you know. That's all right. It toughened me up when I got older.
Thu, 24 October 2013
Today in the podcast, Abidemi talks about the music scene in Nigeria.
Go to elllo.org for the full lesson.
Transcript of the audio:
Todd: So Abidemi, you're from Nigeria. Can you talk a little bit about the music scene in your country?
Abidemi: Yes. Nigeria is just amazing now in terms of music and even in the past we’ve had and we still do have great music, great musicians. We love to party just as much as we love to eat, there's nothing that Nigerians loves more than parties. We love to have a good time. So of course, music plays an important role in that. One of the music that we have now is like fusion. A mix of old traditional Nigerian music and instruments with more Western Hip Hop, R&B kind of sound and even reggae and Jamaican music and some Spanish too mixing with it.
Todd: Oh wow, that sounds like a nice mix.
Abidemi: It is actually and because we love to dance as well, it's something that you can move your body to, you can dance to, and also some ballads as well, that makes people think. In the past, Nigerian artists were either they sang traditional songs which they sang in the languages that we had in Nigeria or they sang in English for the most part because we do have many languages. So if you want to reach a wider audience, you needed to sing in English. But these days the interesting thing is many people are mixing.
Todd: Oh, nice.
Abidemi: They will sing a little bit in English as well as in their ... mostly in their native language which makes for very interesting mixes because then people that do understand that language, it attracts them to it. And it becomes more our own thing in our own country.
Todd: So what are the languages that are mixed with English?
Abidemi: For example in my region, I speak Yoruba, so Yoruba, they use a lot of Yoruba. They use Igbo language too, it’s from the southeastern part of Nigeria. And there’s also Pidgin, Pidgin is a kind of ... it's Nigerian English or ... I know in other parts of west Africa they use Pidgin as well. But it’s more like slangy English, I would say. So there's a mixture of that. So the music becomes more Africanized, Nigerianized, if that’s a word. So it makes it much more our own thing and people enjoy it. Yeah, and it’s really good. So new artists now, they’re doing that and one of the results of that is it’s more accessible actually to people that are not Nigerians. So a lot of people download Nigerian music from YouTube. For example, there’s D'Banj. He’s an artist that’s gone over to the United States and he sings with Kanye.
Todd: Oh, wow!
Abidemi: Yeah, and some big top Hip Hop artist in the United States. There was a guy who they used one of his songs in one of the American - Black American movies in the States as well.
Todd: Oh, cool!
Abidemi: And he got a lot of exposure through that. So our artist are, yeah, they become more more famous it seems like. And they're leading other areas of Africa too.
Todd: Well I’ll be sure to put some YouTube clips up with the interview so people can check it out.
Abidemi: Please do.
Thu, 24 October 2013
Today on the podcast Eucharia takes a quiz with Todd. She answers what she prefers for different situations. She talks about reading, drinking and other things.
Go to elllo.org and see Views #512 for the lesson.
Here is the transcript of the conversation:
Todd: OK. Eucharia, we’re going to play a game "Choices". I will say 3 things, you tell me which would you choose. OK, the first one - coffee, tea or water in the morning?
Eucharia: Yeah, when I wake up I usually have 2 glasses of water and then at the moment I’m trying not to drink coffee and not to drink caffeine so at the moment it’s water but if I were given a choice normally it would be coffee.
Todd: OK, how about at night time. You’re at a party, which would you rather have - beer, wine or a cocktail?
Eucharia: It depends on the party. If I’m going dancing, cocktail. If I’m going out eating, wine and if it’s just friends getting together, beer.
Todd: You’re on an airplane and you’re flying across the ocean. What would you prefer to read - newspaper, a magazine or a book?
Eucharia: A book, definitely.
Todd: Yeah, why a book? That was a very strong answer.
Eucharia: I love reading. I have to read every night before I go to sleep for maybe 30 minutes so I really enjoy reading and I find that I emotionally engage with the book and what’s happening in the book and I forget the fact that I’m on a 12 hour intercontinent flight.
Todd: OK, good answer. You have to choose between 3 seasons - summer, fall or winter.
Eucharia: I love sunshine. I love heat. I can’t stand rain which is why I don’t live in my home country and I don’t like snow.
Todd: OK, I’m with you on that. OK, next one. To pass the time at night you can watch TV, you can check the internet or you can watch a movie, a dvd. What would you prefer?
Eucharia: Probably watching a dvd because, yeah if I’m on the internet I’m on the internet at work and so I don’t want to go on the internet late at night because I start thinking too much and I can’t sleep.
Todd: OK, last one. You’re at the beach. Would you prefer to - play a sport on the beach, on the sand, go in the water and swim or surf or lie on the beach and get a tan?
Eucharia: Lie on the beach and get a tan! Yep, I’m from a country we don’t see a lot of sunshine so I still get very excited when I see sunshine. I’ll go to the beach and maybe I’ll go to the water and swim a bit but my favourite thing is to lie on the beach with my book and get a tan.
Todd: OK. Thanks, Eucharia.
Eucharia: You’re welcome.
Wed, 9 October 2013
In today's podcast, Daniel talks with Hana about her trip to Greece.
Go to elllo.org for the complete lesson for this audio.
Transcript of Conversation | elllo.org | #1259 Greek Vacation
Daniel: So we're talking about holidays. Is there any really, really good holidays that you remember?
Hana: Well, one of my favourite holidays was when I went to Greece a couple of years ago with my family.
Daniel: Wow, Greece, I've never been there. How is it? Sounds really, really nice.
Hana: Greece is a very beautiful country. The houses are ... everything is so white and the beaches are so beautiful.
Daniel: So what did you do in Greece?
Hana: Mainly I just relaxed at the swimming pool and at the beaches. And at night time I went shopping with my mum. And we had some really nice food too.
Daniel: Oh, that sounds really interesting, like the perfect holidays. So you said you went with your family, right?
Hana: Yes, I went with my mum and dad and brother.
Daniel: And for how long did you go there?
Hana: We went for four days. And when we went there was a big football tournament. And so everybody was so happy and excited. And at night times everybody will start dancing. And so me and my brother, we would join and dance with them.
Daniel: Cool! So did you get to see any of those matches of the tournament?
Hana: Yes, I went to see one match with my dad and I had so much fun.
Daniel: Oh, it sounds really cool, like really nice holidays.
Hana: Yes, it was one of my best holidays.
Mon, 30 September 2013
In the podcast today we listen to Adelina from Spain talk with Chris from Belgium about her thoughts on Education in her country.
This podcast is lesson #1255 on elllo.org
Here is the transcript to the coversation:
Chris: So Adelina, I guess it's not polite to ask a girl for her age, but you must be more or less like me, 31, you're in your early 30s or maybe a bit less?
Ade: Well I just turned 34.
Chris: Wow! Well you wouldn't say that. Well, what's your profession, what do you do?
Ade: I'm a translator.
Chris: Oh wow, translator. And how long do you have to study for that, let's say if you want to become a translator, how many years of study is that?
Ade: In that time it was five years, but now I think they cut it one year, so now it's only four.
Chris: Okay, right. And generally not only university or high school, but generally the education system in Spain, you think it's good, you think it's a good system?
Ade: I don't know, I'm not into that anymore. But I don't think it's good, I don't like it, no. No, because I think there are so many things that needs to be changed because we need to improve our education system with the time. We are in a technology era, okay, so I don't think they need to learn ... I don't know, the Second World War, you know, because it's not useful anymore. So I think there is a lack of languages in Spain. People don't speak languages at all, so they should focus a little bit more in teaching the kids how to speak another ... more foreign languages, you know. Plus, I think also there is a lack of ... make the kids unique. So you cannot teach everyone the same thing because each person has potential and special skills. So I think the teacher shall be know a lot their students and focus on their abilities and their skills and try to grow them, to make the kid be ... I don't know, more talented, more creative and this world will be much better, I think.
Chris: Yeah, it's true. Parents only want the best for their children and they choose for their children. And when you talk about teachers, I mean teachers as well, they don' t... I don't think they care the most, I mean maybe in their first year, but when they are 10 years in teaching, I don't think they will really focus on one kid and saying, "Let's go talk to their parents because this kid really has to do this or that."
Ade: Yeah, I don't know, lately I see a lot of news that the children are aggressive and is the poor situation of the teachers, they become like victims. But I think also that if the teenagers are aggressive it's because they feel lost, they don't know what to do with their lives. And that becomes frustration, and with the frustration comes the aggressive attitude, you know.
Chris: Yeah. Well it's only now if you look in Spain, as you say, on the other hand people study ... parents put a lot of money in their kids to study and have their diploma and then finally they graduate, but there's no job or maybe shall we leave that for another time, this discussion?
Ade: Yeah. But the thing is that it's too much theory and not practice. So they need to practice what they're going to do in the future you know. But I cannot save the world, so this is a topic, it really, really get out of my nerves. So yeah, as you said, maybe just stop in this point.
Chris: Okay. Well, thank you very much.
Sat, 3 August 2013
Shirley talks about a prank she played with her brothers as child.
Go to elllo.org/podcast/ for links to bonus material
(Start of Audio Script)
Hello, everybody and welcome to the podcast.
This is episode #2 - The Prank.
And in today's podcast we hear from Shirley and Yuri again. We heard them in episode #1 talking about the shack. Shirley is from Scotland and Yuri is from Italy. And today, we hear about a prank Shirley did as child.
Now, a prank is like a joke you play on other people, and it makes you laugh, but maybe the people who you play the prank on, they don't know what's happening. So here, we're going to hear Shirley talk about a pretty good prank she did with her brothers when she was little.
So let's go ahead and listen, and we'll come back at the end of the podcast.
(Start of Conversation)
Yuri: So, Shirley, we were talking about childhood memories. And you're from Scotland. Is there anything from your childhood that you can tell us?
Shirley: I've got a really funny story actually. Maybe I was about ten years old or something, and we used to have this little kind of shack in the countryside that we were dragged to every weekend, and away from civilization, you know, and no running water, no electricity. So we kids had to make our own fun. I've got my brothers, myself, and a couple of cousins, we would always go there at weekends or school holidays or something, and one of the highlights was to go to the Sunday School, the Sunday morning church service, and the reason ... one of the reasons this was attractive to the kids was because they bribed us to go there by giving us sweets when got there, so it was great. So we always went anyway. It was a church service for about an hour, singing hymns and stuff like that. Anyway, this one Sunday we arrived early, about half an hour early. There was nobody there. The church wasn't open yet, so it was, as most people know, it rains a lot in Scotland, so on that rainy day, we all were wearing our cagoules which is a kind a rain jacket with a big pocket in the front, and while we were waiting for everybody else to arrive, we started just kind of playing around in the trees. There was a little river nearby, and it was at the time of year when the tadpoles were turning into baby frogs, so we got this crazy idea to collect all these ... I'm talking hundreds of frogs were around, so we all got a big handful of baby frogs, put them in the big pocket of our cagoule, went off into church. So there we are, we're kind of in the middle of the crowd. You know, we weren't at the front of the back, kind of in the middle, and everybody's standing up singing the hymns, and really getting into, you know, the church singing and stuff like that, and then we decided that we would get the frogs out, so each of us, one at a time, one of us kids, one at a time kind of crouched down like we were tying our shoe lace, and let all of these frogs out of our pockets, so these tiny little frogs started jumping all over the church, and there's all these ladies in their Sunday best and started squealing and screaming and the minister didn't know what was going on, and he's trying to keep everybody calm, and we're just singing along with the hymn, you know, we're really innocent and they had no idea, cause they didn't see us do it, so they had no idea what had happened, and yeah, we got away with it. We didn't get told off, cause we didn't get caught, and yeah, when after the church service, you know, we had such a laugh after the church service, and yeah, that's one of my greatest childhood memories. Getting up to mischief with my brothers.
(End of Conversation)
So, what do you think? Was it a good prank?
I think so. That's pretty brave. Wow! Doing that in church? Man! I don't think I was that brave as a child to do something like that in church. I'm very impressed because that's a pretty good prank.
What about you? Were you ever naughty as a child? Did you ever play a prank on anybody else?
As for me, I was a pretty good kid, but I idid get in trouble a few times. Maybe in another podcast I might share my prank story. But for now, I think I'll wait.
And as for today's podcast remember, you can go to elllo.org/podcast/ for links to this episode and many, many more. Also, remember at elllo.org there are thousands of listening activities especially made for English language students, like you to help you improve your English.
We have many, many real conversations from speakers all over the world. just like Shirley and Yuri. And we have quizzes, vocabulary as MP3, videos and much much more.
So, stop by and learn anytime. And that's it for today.
Thanks everybody. I hope you enjoyed the podcast, and we will talk to you soon.