Category Archives: Homework

Mediterranean Sea Acidification

B2 – Upper Intermediate

Research shows that a portion of the Mediterranean Sea’s acidity has reached an almost 7-percent increase. This phenomenon poses a threat on sea creatures like oysters and mussels.

https://www.voanews.com/a/rising-temperatures-acidification-threaten-mediterranean-sea-species/3913767.html

Discussion Questions:

1. In your own words, describe the cause/s and effect/s of ocean acidification.
2. Based on the article, what caused the acidification of the Mediterranean Sea, and what are its effects?
3. In your opinion, what will be the impact of this phenomenon on countries like Italy, France and Spain?

Students in Amsterdam Share Housing With Refugees

B2 – Upper Intermediate

Finding quality, low-cost housing can be a problem for university students, especially in the Netherlands.Last year, the average cost to rent a house in Amsterdam rose to over 2,000 euros a month.

Now, students have another choice: they can live with refugees. The “Startblok” project is a group of city-owned apartment homes that opened in July 2016.

Listen to the video or read the article in the link below to learn more about this integration project between University students and refugees.

Students in Amsterdam Share Housing With Refugees

Discuss:

1. What are the students and refugees expected to do in exchange for the cheap housing?
2. Do you think you need something like the “Startblok” project in your country?
3. What is the general attitude towards refugees in your country? Do you think that refugees find it difficult to integrate into your local community?
4. Is housing cheap in your country? Would you ever consider moving abroad because of lower housing costs?

 

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Spanish ‘Smart’ City Project Saves Time, Money

B2 – Upper Intermediate

As life in cities worldwide becomes more hectic and more expensive, urban designers are resorting to modern technology to help citizens avoid traffic snarls, and shorten the time needed for shopping and other errands. Technology also is used to cut costly waste.

Read the article and learn more about how Santander aims to be a smart city.

Spanish ‘Smart’ City Project Saves Time, Money

Discuss:

1. How can drivers in Santander find out where they can find available parking spots?
2. What made all these innovations possible?
3. What do you think about the technological innovations in Santander?
4. Do you know of any other “smart” cities in the world?
5. What do you think big cities will look like in 100 years?
6. How do you think public transportation will change in the future?

Trendy Names for Vegetables

© Vancouver Sun

B1 – Lower Intermediate

They are good for our bodies. They are rich in essential vitamins and nutrients but low in fat and calories. They are a good source of fiber. Vegetables -or fondly called veggies- are key to a healthy diet. However, there are many people who despise them.

Find out how we can make eating vegetables more enticing.

http://www.breakingnewsenglish.com/1706/170615-vegetables.html

Discussion Questions:
1. What do you think of this idea? Why do you think it’s effective?
2. What are the benefits of eating vegetables?
3. How can we get people to eat more vegetables?
4. Do labels affect your perception of a dish?

Reasons To Study a Foreign Language Abroad

© via The Local ES

B2 – Upper Intermediate

Anybody who is trying to learn a foreign language constantly wants to find a way to speed up the process. There are many ways to do it. Is living and studying it abroad truly the most effective way?

Here are six reasons why one needs to live away from home to learn another language.

https://www.thelocal.es/20170524/6-reasons-you-should-study-a-foreign-language-abroad-esl-tlccu

Discussion Questions:
1. Do you agree that “learning and communicating in the language of a foreign country while living there is without doubt the best way of learning”?
2. What are ways you’ve tried to learn English? Which do you think are the most effective and which are not?
3. Would you consider studying a language abroad or recommend anyone to do it? Support your answer.

Theater in the Age of Shakespeare

B1 – Intermediate

The theater has always been a great source of entertainment, amusing people for centuries. Originally began to tell stories to those who cannot read and write; the curtains opened up to showcase more than just a story. It also conveyed feelings, and information that can greatly influence the minds of its viewers.

http://www.english-online.at/history/elizabethan-theatre/shakespeares-theatre.htm

Discussion Questions:
1. Have you ever seen a play before?
2. Describe the theater in the time of Shakespeare. How is it different from the theater today?
3. How did the government receive the theater in Shakespeare’s time?
4. Describe the lives of actors in the time of Shakespeare.
5. How can the theater influence its audience?

Generation Vacation

B2 – Upper Intermediate

A 25-year-old boy is in the middle of the millennial generation. Much maligned by elders for being lazy, entitled and addicted to technology, they are over-qualified but can’t find work or afford rent. They spend more time with their parents than ever before (the number of adults living at home has hit a 20-year high), and they also travel more – because where’s the point in saving when you’ll never have enough for a house deposit anyway?

Read the interesting story of a boy who traveled the Basque Country with his mom and answer the following discussion questions below.

What happens when Millennials like me go on holiday with our parents?

Discuss:

1. Have you ever traveled with your parents before? If yes, how was it and where did you go?
2. Can you tell me one of your most memorable trips abroad?
3. Tell me the difference between traveling with friends and family. And, what are the advantages and disadvantages when you travel with your family?
4. Do you prefer to travel with friends, relatives, or alone? Why?
5. Do you agree that Millennials travel more today because they feel that they will never have enough money for a house deposit? And do you think it’s a good thing or a bad thing?

 

Middle School Students Advocate for Mitchell’s Law

B1 – Intermediate

Middle schoolers passed a resolution in the Senate to lobby for police animals rights. Everyone awaits whether this will eventually become a law after it passes in the State Assembly.

Find out more about their proposed law below:

http://wivb.com/2017/06/01/hamburg-middle-school-students-advocate-for-mitchells-law/

Discussion Questions:

1. Who is Mitchell and what is the Mitchell’s Law?
2. In your opinion, is Mitchell’s Law relevant to other parts of the world?
3. Do you think it’s acceptable for children to take part in law-making?

Slow Aging

B2 – Upper Intermediate

Getting older is inevitable, but our diet and lifestyle play a huge role in how we look and feel along the way. Aging doesn’t necessarily mean getting sick or feeling less than our best — if we pay attention to a few key factors and make a few important shifts, we can age healthfully and feel as optimal as possible.

Read the article and be able to answer the following questions:

http://www.headsupenglish.com/index.php/upper-intermediate-students/upper-intermediate-news-lessons/upper-intermediate-health-lessons/300-anti-aging-remedies

Discussion Questions:

  1. How concerned are you with aging? Please explain.
  2. Do members of your family live long and healthy lives? Please explain.
  3. What lifestyle choices have you made that have had negative effects?
  4. What lifestyle choices have you made that have had positive effects?
  5. If humans could double their lifespan, would it be a good idea? Why/not?

All Work and No Play

B2 – Upper Intermediate

Play is essential to development because it contributes to the cognitive, physical, social, and emotional well-being of children and youth. Despite the benefits derived from play for both children and parents, time for free play has been markedly reduced for some children. This report addresses a variety of factors that have reduced play, including a hurried lifestyle, changes in family structure, and increased attention to academics and enrichment activities at the expense of recess or free child-centered play.

Read the article further and be able to discuss  the following questions:

http://www.headsupenglish.com/index.php/upper-intermediate-students/upper-intermediate-news-lessons/upper-intermediate-education-lessons/262-no-recess

Discussion Questions:

  1. Do you agree that children should spend most of their day studying?
  2. Some people say that children who have piano, soccer, and other activities become smart adults. What you opinion about this?
  3. What’s a good balance between study and play for children? Why do you think so?
  4. How important are tests for children? Do tests accurately measure a child’s intelligence, skills, and/or abilities.Why do you think so?
  5. What is the education system like in your home country? Please explain.
  6. How can the education system in your home country be improved? Please explain.