Sand

Hi Everyone,

On this warm, breezy, sunny day in July, we had the beach on our minds! What better way to spend a day like today than at the beach. So,we are taking a virtual day at the beach!Image result for cape cod beachesBut first we needed to review some vocabulary related to the beach, here are the images and vocabulary for  By the beach Beach Clothing and Accessories, and  Beachside activities. We talked about what we like about the beach, and what we like to do at the beach.

Today we discussed what are the important resources of the 21st century, which included energy sources, food, land, water, air, people, data and more. Today, however, many consider sand to be one of the most valuable resources being used today, behind water and air. Sand?? Well, this wasn’t something we think too much about, but, it plays an important part in our lives beyond just enjoying it at the beach.

We watched this talk by Denis Delestrac , “Let’s Talk About Sand”, in which he answers questions about what is sand used for; where does it come from;  why are we running out of sand; and what can we do about the disappearing sand. Take a look here:

After watching we reviewed some of the major points of Denis’ talk and were surprised about the worldwide condition of the supply of sand. The depletion of sand resources has an adverse on marine life; is shrinking our beaches; is increasing the cost of concrete used in most buildings; and has resulted in a “war” for sand. The underlying theme is that we need to respect our sand resources and think about alternatives and options to protect it. 

Image result for rachel carson quote in every grain of sand

We talked about 2 expressions using sand , bury your head in the sand which means don’t hide from problems, don’t ignore them (like an ostrich). And the other was “the sands of time” which refers to sand in an hourglass which passes through it as a metaphor for passage of time in our lives.  Image result for don't bury your head in the sandImage result for hourglass

So sand is valuable in nature, and is also a fascinating art form. We watched  this beautiful and amazing video made by sand artist, Yan Junjie, and his creation called “World of Conceptions”. This sand painting is very clever and is basically finger painting with sand. Enjoy the video here: 

 

As Vince Beiser wrote in the New York Times in his article titled “The World’s Disappearing Sand” 

One of the 21st century’s most valuable resources is sand.

Hardly anyone thinks about sand, where it comes from or what we do to get it.

It once seemed as if the planet had such boundless supplies of oil, water, trees and land that we didn’t need to worry about them. But of course, we’re learning the hard way that none of those things are infinite, and the price we’ve paid so far for using them is going up fast. We’re having to conserve, reuse, find alternatives for and generally get smarter about how we use those natural resources. That’s how we need to start thinking about sand.

Remember to relax and practice!

Literacy

Hi Everyone,

We started off today with a review of some casual phrases and expressions used in daily short conversations. By looking at some illustrated situations we focused on key expressions and their meanings . Here are the illustrations with answers we did in class.

Next we moved on to today’s topic : literacy – the ability to read and write.Image result for literacyWe talked about what age we started to learn to read; who taught us; and how were we taught. In small groups we looked at a few images and wrote our own stories or narratives titled “The Reader”Image result for bell's the reader film by greg gray .

Your stories were very descriptive and thoughtful and also very creative!!
Image result for bell's the reader film by greg grayImage result for bell's the reader film by greg graySome of the common themes were the man’s age, his passion and dedication to reading and learning.

Next we watched the film “The Reader” and compared our stories with the film. Take a look here:

After watching we discussed the struggles the man had to overcome to learn to read and the various techniques and strategies he used to be a successful reader, including reading the cereal box.We talked about the relationship between the man and his son. And the social issues related to an older person challenged by learning how to read.

One surprising thing at the end of the film, is that this is an advertisement for Bells Scotch.Related image

An extra special scotch for an extra special man!

 

We talked about the issue of illiteracy – not being able to read and write. Why does this happen, and what are the problems that an illiterate person may face in life. Although illiteracy rates have declined significantly in the last 25 years, it still exists in some parts of the world, due to poverty, civil and social issues, and limited or no access to education.

Photographer, Laura Boushnak started a project “I Write. I Read” which raises the awareness of women in Arab countries that suffer from high rates of illiteracy.Image result for laura boushnak i read i writeRelated image

Take another look at her talk about her project and what we can all learn through her photographs and travels –

We all agreed that this is a great way to expand knowledge and awareness about the issues with illiteracy around the world.

Enjoy a nice summer weekend in Boston!Related image

Remember to relax and practice!

 

Grit

Hi Everyone,

Yesterday’s conversation was about physical appearance, intelligence, and persistence, or grit. We talked about which of these 3 traits were important to us, and as a group decided that intelligence was number 1, followed by physical appearance and then persistence. We described these two men in terms of physical appearance:Image result for 3x3 nuno rochaRelated image

Then we expressed our opinions about each man’s intelligence and persistence based on the photographs. Both the men are in the film we watched “3×3”.  We tried to guess what was the relationship between the men and what would happen in the film. Take a look at the film here: 

After watching we talked about the themes of the film – not to judge someone by their looks, and that persistence pays off.Image result for try try try again

We discussed personal instances in our own lives when we have been faced with a challenge but didn’t give up. 

A popular word used to describe persistence today is grit.Image result for grit

Grit is persistence, stamina and passion for long term goals. It is popular in education, psychology and business, as a measure of success. We watched this news report about grit, which features the author of a book on grit, Angela Duckworth. 

In the video Angela Duckworth talks about grit as “passion, perseverance, and payoff”, and that it is considered more important than intelligence, leadership, and physical fitness. But, the bottom line is that grit is as important as empathy and kindness.Related imageWe all agreed that we are gritty!

Words of the day

hesitant (adjective) : slow to act or speak especially because you are nervous or unsure about what to do                                                                                                        She seemed hesitant about accepting the job in London.

smack-dab (adverb) : {informal} exactly or directly                                                             In the movie theater, a very tall guy sat smack-dab in front of me! I could barely see the movie screen! 

prepare (verb) : to make (someone or something) ready for some activity, purpose, use, etc.                                                                                                                                     Our teacher prepared us for tomorrow’s math test.   

Remember to relax and practice!

Move Learn Eat

Hi Everyone,

We began with a review of modal verbs which are :Image result for modal verbs

Today we focused on modals of speculation – must, might, may, and could.

Modals of speculation are used to express degrees of certainty. In other words, they describe a fact or situation that is definite, probable, possible or impossible.

For example:  Mary must not have done well on the test. She looked so sad.

To speculate about present situations or facts:Related image

To speculate about past situations or facts:Related image

We practiced using modals of speculation with 5 different scenarios. Good work everyone!

Today’s topic was Move Learn Eat. These 3 verbs can be used to describe activities at school, at work, at home and when travelling. Then we discussed if you could travel to 11 countries in 6 weeks, which countries would you visit? What would you do in each country? Where would you start your trip and where would you end it? Each group presented their itinerary, and they were each well presented and very unique.

Well, a guy named Andrew Lees actually did this trip and made 3 one-minute films, Move Learn and Eat. In each film we see where Andrew went; what he learned; and what he ate. Image result for move learn eatAndrew traveled to these 11 countries : Portugal, Spain, France, Italy, Argentina, Peru, Chile, Brazil, Thailand, Myanmar, and United States. We used modals of speculation to guess what Andrew learned and what he ate.

Take another look at the three short films, and see what you can speculate about Andrew’s adventures!

After speculating about where Andrew would go, and what he would learn and what he would eat, we talked about what does travel mean to us. We agreed that the more you travel the more you become connected to the world. When we are experiencing different cultures we gain an insight into other people’s lives, and can appreciate all our differences. Our view of the world expands and this helps to create a global mindset. Travel is a good thing, for sure!

Remember to relax and practice!

Let’s Move Learn and Eat , where ever we are!Image result for move learn eat