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 Here is where you can practice a little English! Are you ready? Please remember that you could also help in developing this section: you can submit your essays in order to publish them in this section. Enjoy and have fun!!!


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Lesson no. 2

1 - Quiz
Select the best preposition to complete the sentence.  Answers in section 8.

a) This jacket was made _____ hand _____ Paris.
b) They saw the job advertisement _____ the newspaper_____ Saturday.
c) I got _____ the bus _____ 8:45pm.
d) Russia is the largest country _____ the world.
e) Does she live _____ Maple Street or _____ 525 Pine Avenue?
f)  The new Italian restaurant is _____ that old movie cinema.  
g) He usually pays for dinner _____ his company credit card.
h) I am traveling _____ Hungary _____ April.

Some prepositions will be used more than once:

on, by, on, in, with, at, to

2 - New Words From The Vocab Club
Our Daily Vocab Club has learned seven new words this week. Here are the seven new words:

Gibe = to utter taunting words. (verb)
Hive = a container for housing a colony of honeybees or a place swarming with busy occupants. (noun)
Inducement = a motive or consideration that leads one to action or to addition or more effective actions. (noun)
Junker = something of such age and condition as to be ready for scrapping, putting in the garbage. (noun)
Key = to be of basic importance. (adjective)
Lollygag = to do very little or work very slowly. ( verb)
Menagerie = a collection of wild or foreign animals kept especially for exhibition.

 3 - Student Essay  

 This essay was submitted by Paula.

I do believe in Aliens as much as I don’t believe in it.

What I mean is, why or why not believe in it? I suppose it is possible to exist life in another corner of the Universe, the same way it exist here on Hearth. If we see it for that point of view, we are aliens; we would be aliens for someone or something living in the outer space. The Universe seems to be so vast, therefore why isn’t it possible that the miracle of life hasn’t occur somewhere else too?

On the other hand, it’s hard to believe that something so incredible could happen twice. And the biggest problem is to believe in something one never saw before. I don’t believe in people saying they saw a flying sauce or a green been. There’s a lot of speculation around it and there’s always people ready to say anything to call attention. I believe if they exist and could, they would appear and try to contact with the whole human kind.

4 - Comments about the Essay
You make some very good points in your essay, Paula.  Your ideas about us also being considered aliens and the vastness of our universe really makes us think.  You also stated that it's difficult for us to believe in something we have never seen and question why aliens have never visited us.  These are great thought provoking questions.  Thanks for this great essay!!

There are a few points we should talk about in regards to your writing.  In the first sentence you should say "as much as I don't believe in them".  Aliens are referred to as plural, so use a plural pronoun.  Be very careful with spelling - Earth, Flying Saucers, Green Beings, etc.  It's easy to make these mistakes but it's also confusing for the reader.  Apart from these small mistakes, your essay is well written.  Keep working on your English - you're doing great!

                                    Good Work Paula!!

5 - Borrow and Lend
Many students get confused over the correct usage of borrow and lend.  
Follow these easy explanations in order to understand and use these words correctly.

 borrow something from someone

 I borrowed a book from my brother.
 Robert borrowed five dollars from me.
 She borrowed the CD from her friend.

 lend something to someone

 Did you lend the magazine to Maria?
  I lent my eraser to Juan.  (past tense)
 Karen lent her textbook to her friend.

 lend someone something

  Will you lend me your calculator for a minute?
 Lend me a dollar, will you?

If you follow these structures, you can't go wrong with using borrow and lend!

6 - The Story of American Thanksgiving
Thanksgiving is one of the most popular holidays in the United States of America. Traditionally, Thanksgiving is a holiday that Americans spend 
together with their families who enjoy a Thanksgiving meal which usually includes the traditional Thanksgiving turkey.



The Pilgrims, who celebrated the first thanksgiving in America, were fleeing religious prosecution in their native England. In 1609 a group of Pilgrims left England for the religious freedom in Holland where they lived and prospered. After a few years their children were speaking Dutch and had become attached to the Dutch way of life. This worried the Pilgrims. They considered the Dutch frivolous and their ideas a threat to their children's education and morality.

fleeing = running away from, escaping prospered = do well, live well frivolous = not serious morality = belief system

So they decided to leave Holland and travel to the New World. Their trip was financed by a group of English investors, the Merchant Adventurers. It was agreed that the Pilgrims would be given passage and supplies in exchange for their working for their backers for 7 years.

backers = financial supporters

On Sept. 6, 1620 the Pilgrims set sail for the New World on a ship called the Mayflower. They sailed from Plymouth, England and aboard were 44 Pilgrims, who called themselves the "Saints", and 66 others ,whom the Pilgrims called the "Strangers."

The long trip was cold and damp and took 65 days. Since there was the 
danger of fire on the wooden ship, the food had to be eaten cold. Many passengers became sick and one person died by the time land was sighted 
on November 10th.

damp = wet sighted = seen

The long trip led to many disagreements between the "Saints" and the "Strangers". After land was sighted a meeting was held and an agreement was worked out, called the Mayflower Compact, which guaranteed equality and unified the two groups. They joined together and named themselves the "Pilgrims."

Although they had first sighted land off Cape Cod they did not settle until they arrived at Plymouth, which had been named by Captain John Smith in 1614. It was there that the Pilgrims decide to settle. Plymouth offered an excellent harbor. A large brook offered a resource for fish. The Pilgrims biggest concern was attack by the local Native American Indians. But the Patuxets were a peaceful group and did not prove to be a threat.

harbor = protected area on the coast threat = a danger

The first winter was devastating to the Pilgrims. The cold, snow and sleet was exceptionally heavy, interfering with the workers as they tried to construct their settlement. March brought warmer weather and the health of the Pilgrims improved, but many had died during the long winter. Of the 110 Pilgrims and crew who left England, less that 50 survived the first winter.

devastating = extremely difficult interfering = preventing, making difficult

On March 16, 1621 , what was to become an important event took place, an Indian brave walked into the Plymouth settlement. The Pilgrims were 
frightened until the Indian called out "Welcome" (in English!).

settlement = place to live

His name was Samoset and he was an Abnaki Indian. He had learned English from the captains of fishing boats that had sailed off the coast. After staying 
the night Samoset left the next day. He soon returned with another Indian named Squanto who spoke better English than Samoset. Squanto told the Pilgrims of his voyages across the ocean and his visits to England and Spain.
 It was in England where he had learned English.

voyages = travels

Squanto's importance to the Pilgrims was enormous and it can be said that they would not have survived without his help. It was Squanto who taught the Pilgrims how to tap the maple trees for sap. He taught them which plants were poisonous and which had medicinal powers. He taught them how to plant the Indian corn by heaping the earth into low mounds with several seeds and fish 
in each mound. The decaying fish fertilized the corn. He also taught them to plant other crops with the corn.

sap = the juice of the maple tree poisonous = food or liquid dangerous to the health mounds = raising of the earth made of dirt by hand decaying = rotting

The harvest in October was very successful and the Pilgrims found themselves with enough food to put away for the winter. There was corn, fruits and vegetables, fish to be packed in salt, and meat to be cured over smoky fires.

cured = cooked by smoke in order to keep meat a long time

The Pilgrims had much to celebrate, they had built homes in the wilderness, they had raised enough crops to keep them alive during the long coming 
winter, they were at peace with their Indian neighbors. They had beaten the odds and it was time to celebrate.

wilderness = uncivilized country crops = cultivated vegetables such as corn, wheat, etc. beaten the odds = won something that was very difficult or against somebody

The Pilgrim Governor William Bradford proclaimed a day of thanksgiving to be shared by all the colonists and the neighboring Native Americans. They invited Squanto and the other Indians to join them in their celebration. Their chief, Massasoit, and 90 braves came to the celebration which lasted for 3 days. They played games, ran races, marched and played drums. The Indians demonstrated their skills with the bow and arrow and the Pilgrims 
demonstrated their musket skills. Exactly when the festival took place is uncertain, but it is believed the celebration took place in mid-October.

proclaimed = declared, named colonists = original inhabitants of the
 US colonies braves = Indian warrior musket = type of gun or rifle used during that period in history

The following year the Pilgrims harvest was not as bountiful, as they were still unused to growing the corn. During the year they had also shared their stored food with newcomers and the Pilgrims ran short of food.

bountiful = a lot of newcomers = people who have recently arrived

The 3rd year brought a spring and summer that was hot and dry with the 
crops dying in the fields. Governor Bradford ordered a day of fasting and prayer, and it was soon thereafter that the rain came. To celebrate - November 29th of that year was proclaimed a day of thanksgiving. This date is believed to be the real true beginning of the present day Thanksgiving Day.

fasting = not eating thereafter = after that

The custom of an annually celebrated thanksgiving, held after the harvest, continued through the years. During the American Revolution (late 1770's) a
day of national thanksgiving was suggested by the Continental Congress.

harvest = collection of the crops

In 1817 New York State had adopted Thanksgiving Day as an annual custom. By the middle of the 19th century many other states also celebrated a Thanksgiving Day. In 1863 President Abraham Lincoln appointed a national 
day of thanksgiving. Since then each president has issued a Thanksgiving Day proclamation, usually designating the fourth Thursday of each November as 
the holiday.

designating = appointing, naming

7 - Interesting Facts
1) Men are 6 times more likely to be struck by lightning than women!
2) It is estimated that millions of trees in the world are accidentally planted by squirrels who bury nuts and then forget where they hid them!
3) Ernest Vincent Wright wrote a novel, "Gadsby", which contains over 50,000 words -- none of them with the letter E!
4) The most used letter in the English alphabet is 'E', and 'Q' is the least used!
5) Of all the words in the English language, the word set has the most definitions!
6) A toothpick is the object most often choked on by Americans!
7) Every 45 seconds, a house catches on fire in the United States!
8) There are more than 50,000 earthquakes throughout the world every year!
9) Apples are more efficient than caffeine in keeping people awake in the mornings!
10) The poison-arrow frog has enough poison to kill about 2,200 people!

8 - Quiz Answers
Here are the answers from section 1:
a) by, in
b) in, on
c) on, at
d) in
e) on, at
f)  by
g) with
h) to, in

Coordonator sectiune: Dan Radu | Anca Barcu + Asociatia Studentilor din Facultatea de Limbi Straine | Contact


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