Wimbledon EFL Lesson – Game Set and Match!

Wimbledon is here! This is one of the world’s biggest tennis tournaments and the most prestigious of the Majors, so we could not let this opportunity pass without exploring some tennis vocabulary. These few weeks of Grand Slam tennis offer a great chance to prepare a sporty EFL lesson with a traditional UK flavour. The event runs from 25th June until 16th July 2017, so grab your racket and let’s explore the traditions of Wimbledon and learn some useful tennis vocabulary! Continue reading

Exploring Vocabulary in George Michael’s Careless Whisper

George Michael - singing live

The pop star and esteemed singer-songwriter George Michael sadly passed away on Christmas Day. As a tribute to his song-writing talent and philanthropic work we have taken one of his most famous tracks as inspiration for language learners. Careless Whisper contains many interesting phrases that are useful to English language students, so let’s consider this classic song and use George’s clever and evocative lyrics to help EFL learners get to grips with some new vocabulary and expressions. Continue reading

It’s Freezing Out There!

thermometer - cold weather vocabularyHave you been enjoying the cold snap? With the thermometer diving towards zero over the past few weeks, it’s time to think about winter vocabulary. There are many ways to describe a cold day – certainly useful when living in a northern climate! From cool to chilly to freezing, whether the wind is breezy, blustery or gale-force – with or without a downpour – cold weather vocabulary is always handy at this time of year. Read on to explore the English vocabulary you need to talk about the cold weather. Continue reading

Do the Monster Mash This Halloween!

monster mashHalloween is an exciting holiday occasion and the perfect time to learn some new vocabulary – so why not learn with a classic song! Monster Mash is a fun Halloween-themed pop song by Bobby ‘Boris’ Pickett and the Crypt Kickers, recorded in 1962. It contains lots of spooky vocabulary and is a great way to expand your knowledge of idioms – and enjoy some Halloween-flavoured language fun. This is great listening material for the EFL class. Will you do the Monster Mash?     Continue reading

Raise a Glass to the Haggis – it’s Burns Night!

Burns Night BannerBurns Night is a celebration dedicated to the life and works of the great Scottish poet Robert (Rabbie) Burns. On 25th January, many people will be throwing a Burns Night supper, featuring all the traditional elements of the night. The traditional celebration includes a piper to welcome the guests, speeches, prayers to bring in the food, a special address and toast to the haggis, lively entertainment, a ‘toast to the lassies’ and many other fun elements.

How will you be celebrating Burns Night in the EFL class? Read on to discover more about this fascinating Scottish tradition and how you might use it to create a fun, Scottish-themed EFL lesson.

Continue reading

The Connection Between Sound, Language and Emotion

Sound and emotionOver 130 years ago, Darwin suggested that speech and melody have the same ancestor. Now two academics have returned to the idea and are currently researching the connection between sound and emotion in relation to language. It seems that the tone of someone’s voice can affect our emotions in the same way that other sounds in the natural world can, such as running water or barking dogs. We can feel calm, anxious, excited or happy and can even have our perceptions altered depending on the tones we hear. Read on to explore the connection between sounds and emotions as we think about what this means for language. Continue reading

Remember, Remember, the Fifth of November!

Bonfire Night - Fireworks in LondonRemember, remember, the 5th of November! It’s Bonfire Night on Saturday and people all over the UK will be lighting bonfires, eating toffee apples and setting off fireworks as we all remember the night that Guy Fawkes nearly blew up the Houses of Parliament.

This annual celebration is always an exciting time of year and it gives EFL students a great opportunity to learn some more vocabulary in another seasonal EFL class. Check out our Bonfire Night lesson plans for poems, pronunciation practice, discussions and gap fill exercises all about the Gun Powder Plot – a lesson plan to thrill Guy Fawkes fans! Continue reading

Is the Scottish Accent Dying Out?

scotland-flag1Linguistics experts at Glasgow University and Edinburgh’s Queen Margaret University believe that a natural change is happening in the Scottish accent. It seems that the distinctive Scottish rolled ‘R’ is slowly disappearing as young people soften the letter so much that it has become almost inaudible. The rhotic or tremulant consonants have always been a distinctive part of the Scottish accent but are they going to vanish for good? Continue reading

It’s a Scorcher! Hot Weather Vocabulary and Phrases

Thermometer - hot weather vocabularyPhew! Are you enjoying the heat wave? Here in the UK we are currently experiencing a sweltering week as the air pressure rises and hot air blasts over from Spain to turn the country into a balmy Mediterranean sauna! Temperatures have been reaching as high as 35C in some southern areas, while Scotland and northern England have reached 27C. As the mercury tips the scale on the hottest June day for four decades, join us as we dive into a cool pool of hot weather vocabulary! Continue reading