Archive for November, 2011

The ‘Twilight Sagas: Pearls of Wisdom from the Vampires and Werewolves.

November 18th, 2011  |  Published in Culture, Education, Social Issues

The new ‘Twilight’ saga Breaking Dawn — Part I is already a box-office hit for many people, however, there are some who wish to examine the  messages these movies are sending out. Here are several (very funny) examples from this article.

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this post with Answer Key.

Scene from movie. Photo: CNN

Excerpt:  Obsessions: Lessons we’ve learned from the ‘Twilight’ franchise  By  Breeanna Hare  CNN

“In the three years since “Twilight” bowed in theaters, we’ve learned a few things:

One, while teen girls are a sizable portion of the fan base, they’re not its totality. Two, the first three films of the franchise have pulled in roughly $1.8 billion worldwide in ticket sales (not adjusted for inflation), according to BoxOfficeMojo.com…Three, there must be a just a teeny tiny footnote on each installment’s budget for Taylor Lautner’s wardrobe, because rare is the moment when the kid isn’t walking around without a shirt…But as “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part I” opens in theaters today, we’re recounting 10 other (tongue firmly in cheek) lessons we’ve culled from the series, themes that have been carried from Stephenie Meyer’s best-selling novels onto the big screen.

1. Love at first sight is overrated; he or she should fall for you at first whiff. Before Edward Cullen got to know the human he eventually married, he smelled Bella from across the classroom.

2. “He’s Just Not That Into You” had it all wrong — silence, irritation, storming off and mood swings are actually signs of unexpressed affection. Edward Cullen wasn’t always the sparkly dreamboat of a blood-drinking gentleman …At first, he was actually pretty rude, prone to angrily walking away from Bella, being short with her and repeatedly telling her to stay away from him because he’s dangerous. Talk about mixed messages!…Which brings us to our next lesson:

3. Be accepting of your partner’s eccentricities.

Quirks such as eye color fluctuations, superhuman strength, the ability to read minds and family members who try to devour you on your birthday are qualities that make a partner unique. Don’t let silly things like her predisposition to kill stand in the way — every relationship has its obstacles! Just be glad she’s not a zombie.

The werewolf pack in The Twilight Saga- Eclipse. From left to right- Paul, Embry, Jacob, Sam, Jared, Quil, and Leah. photo- Wikipedia

4. There’s no such thing as personal space when one’s in love.

Edward and Bella are so into each other, the thought of being separated for more than a span of a few days could send one of them into an outburst that rivals a demonic possession out of “The Exorcist.”…5. In the event that you and your partner do breakup, withdrawing from life as you lived it while having hallucinations about your romantic partner are all expected side effects…6. Since you can’t control such emotions, one should be open to falling in love with a human, shapeshifter, immortal or a baby…

7. If one love interest is the fun one, and the other love interest brings the passion, just hang out with both for as long as possible. … 8. There’s always going to be a rumble brewing, and one of you is always going to have to be saved. Edward and Bella are always fighting off this enemy or that, right up until the very end.” read more… (especially numbers 9 and 10) they are  truly entertaining!

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this post

Level: Intermediate -Advanced

Language Skills: Reading, writing, speaking and listening. Vocabulary and grammar activities are included.

Time: Approximately 2 hours.

Materials: Student handouts (from this lesson) access to news article, and video.

Objective: Students will read the article, learn new vocabulary, and improve  their reading comprehension. At the end of the lesson students will demonstrate their understanding of the material through discussions, and writing. The integrated  language skills practiced will be reading, writing, speaking and listening.

I. Pre-Reading Tasks

KWL Chart

The K-W-L chart is used to activate students’ background knowledge of a topic in order to enhance their comprehension skills. The K-W-L stands for: what I Know, what I Want to learn, and what I did Learn. This one is a wonderfulexample from MSU.

 

II. While Reading Tasks

  •  Vocabulary

 Word Inference

Directions: You are to  infer the meanings of the underlined  words (from the article) and use a dictionary or thesaurus for assistance.

  1. The first three films of the franchise…
  2. There must be a just a teeny tiny footnote on each installment’s budget for Taylor Lautner’s wardrobe
  3. we’re recounting 10 other (tongue firmly in cheek) lessons we’ve culled…
  4. themes that have been carried from Stephenie Meyer’s best-selling novels…
  5. Love at first sight is overrated, he or she should fall for you at first whiff.
  6. …mood swings are actually signs of unexpressed affection.
  7. At first, he was actually pretty rude, prone to angrily walking away from Bella…
  8. Be accepting of your partner’s eccentricities.
  9. Quirks such as eye color fluctuations, superhuman strength…
  10. …family members who try to devour you on your birthday…
  11. Don’t let silly things like her predisposition to kill stand in the way.
  12. Just be glad she’s not a zombie.
  13. …while having hallucinations about your romantic partner…
  • Word Recognition 

Directions: Circle or underline the word that is correct, reread the paragraph to check  your responses.

  1. In the three years since “Twilight bowed/broke  in theaters…
  2. One, while ten/ teen girls are a sizable portion of the fan base…
  3. …there must be a…footnote on each installment’s/ installation budget…
  4. The Twilight Saga: Breaking Down/Dawn — Part I” opens in theaters today
  5. …lessons we’ve called/culled from the series…
  6. Love at first sight/sigh is overrated;
  7. Before Edward Cullen got to know the humane/human he eventually married…
  8. …silence, irritation/irrigation, storming off and mood swings are actually signs of unexpressed affection.
  9. Quacks/Quirks such as eye color fluctuations…
  10. There’s no such thing as personal/personnel space when one’s in love.
  11. If one love interest is the fun one, and the other love interest brings the poison/passion
  12. There’s always going to be a rumba/rumble brewing…
  • Questions for Comprehension

Fill-ins

Directions: Complete the sentences from the article with the words or phrases from the list.

  1. One, while___ are a sizable portion of the fan base, they’re not its____.
  2. Love at first sight is___; he or she should fall for___ at first whiff.  Edward Cullen wasn’t always___of a blood-drinking___Talk about___messages!…
  3. Be___of your partner’s___.
  4. Don’t let silly things like her___to ___stand in the way…
  5. Edward and Bella are so___ the thought of being separated for more than a ___of ___could send one of them into an___that rivals a demonic possession out of “The Exorcist.”
  6. Since you can’t___such emotions, one should be ___to falling in love with a human, shapeshifter, ___or a baby…
  7. If one love___is the fun one, and the other love interest brings the passion, just hang out with both for as long as possible.
  8.  Edward and Bella are always____this enemy or that, right up until the very end.

Word List: 

gentleman, into each other, overrated,  teen girls,  a few days, kill, outburst, accepting, eccentricities,  control,   predisposition,  you, totality,  the sparkly dreamboat,  mixed,  interest, fighting off,  open, span, immortal.

 

III. Post Reading Tasks

  • Reading Comprehension Check

Directions:  Use the  WH-question format to discuss or to write the main points from the article.  Fill in the last column of the KWL chart, if you used one in the pre-reading segment.

  • Writing 

Essay

Directions: Have students write an essay in which  they address one of  the following questions:

  1. Vampires are mythical beings who survive by sucking the blood from unsuspecting victims.  In addition, they are not living beings,  and are known as the “undead”.  Explain how you think the vampire legends began.
  2. Vlad III, Prince of Wallachia (1431–1476) was a real person who ruled during the Ottoman period. He was posthumously named “ Vlad the Impaler”.  Write an essay in which you describe this man and why he was dubbed with such a name!
  • Discussions

Directions:  Have students discuss the following topics either in groups or as a  class.

  1. Do you think that  the author of the article is serious about the “lessons”  we’ve learned from the Twilight movies?   Where in the article does she make her answer to this question clear?
  2. After you’ve read the entire article,  are there any points that you would consider serious about the information in the article? If  yes, explain which points. If your answer is no, explain why not.
  3. Why are the Twilight movies so popular?
  4. Would you (or ) have you seen any of the movies?  If yes, explain what you enjoyed about the movie. If no,  explain why you haven’t seen any of the movies.
IV. Listening Tasks

 Video clip:The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Comic-Con Featurette Official 

 

 

Pre-listening Tasks

  • Vocabulary Prediction

Directions: Based on the title of the video, make a list of words and phrases that you think you’ll hear in this video. As you listen check off the words and phrases you and your group predicted.

While Listening Tasks

  • Listening Comprehension

Fill-ins

Directions:  Students listen for the answers to the following  comments from the speakers in the video and fill them in.

  1. This was the 2011 International___convention.
  2. Some of the fans had been lined up for___days early.
  3. They wanted to be among the_____to see the movie.
  4. The narrator referred to the fans as being___.
  5. One girl said that  hopefully they “might see___ people.”
  6. “It’s going to be____.”
  7. “ We’re ____to yelling.”
  8. The fans weren’t aware that there was a _____ in store for them.
  9. “They’re  extremely____.”
  10. “They’ve been sleeping here since____.”
  11. “You really have, like,  the most___fans  ever.”
  12. “You guys are so____.”
  13. “I have a lot of____ for them, They come out and____ meet their fans.”
  14. “We didn’t ____it at all.  We are , I don’t know,____.
  15. “It was____ that they would be here in 6:30 in the morning.
  16. “I mean thats like really____ to their fans. It’s real ____.”

Post-Listening Tasks

Questions

1. Make a list of questions that you and your group members would like to ask any of the speakers in the video.

2. In five minutes, sum up the main points of this video.

ANSWER KEY- The Twilight Sagas

Thanks for using this lesson plan. Please visit us again!

Related 

You Tube Video of The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1 – (movie trailer)

Coloring Page of Twilight by FlawInMyDesign A little Fun for students!

 

Thank you for using this lesson plan.
Please come back again.

Tags:

Chimps Are Out of the Research Labs…Almost!

November 18th, 2011  |  Published in Education, Lesson Plan, Science

The debate over whether to continue using primates for experiments is still an ongoing issue among animal researchers and caregivers. However, after many years of discussions it appears that  the primates just might win this one (hopefully)…

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this article With Answer Key

3 young chimps at the Iberia Research Center-photo:Tim Mueller New York Times

Excerpt: Chimps’ Days in Labs May Be Dwindling, by James Gorman, New York Times

In a dome-shaped outdoor cage, a dozen chimpanzees are hooting…Chimps’ similarity to humans makes them valuable for research, and at the same time inspires intense sympathy. To research scientists, they may look like the best chance to cure terrible diseases. But to many other people, they look like relatives behind bars. Biomedical research on chimps helped produce a vaccine for hepatitis B, and is aimed at one for hepatitis C, which infects 170 million people worldwide, but there has long been an outcry against the research as cruel and unnecessary.

Cesear

Now, because of a major push by advocacy organizations, a decision to stop such research in the United States could come within a year. As it is, the United States is one of only two countries that conduct invasive research on chimpanzees. The other is the central African nation of Gabon. This is a very different moment than ever before, said Wayne Pacelle, president and chief executive of the Humane Society of the United States. “Now is the time to get these chimps out of invasive research and out of the labs.”

John VandeBerg, director of the Southwest National Primate Research Center in San Antonio, one of six labs that house chimpanzees, agreed that this is “a crucial moment.” Any of several efforts by opponents “could be the cause of a halt in all medical research with chimpanzees,” he said. The Humane Society of the United States and other groups pushed the National Institutes of Health to commission a report on the usefulness of chimps in research, due this year.

The society also joined with the Jane Goodall Institute, the Wildlife Conservation Society and others to petition the federal Fish and Wildlife Service to declare captive chimps endangered, as wild chimps already are, giving them new protections. A decision is due by next September.

In addition, the Great Ape Protection and Cost Savings Act, now in Congress, would ban invasive research on all great apes (including bonobos, gorillas and orangutans)… Mr. Pacelle says that invasive research on chimpanzees is expensive, that there are alternatives and that chimps in research studies suffer painful procedures and isolation. “This is an endangered species that is closer than any other species genetically,” he said. “And we shouldn’t abuse our power.”

Dr. VandeBerg, on the other hand, says that stopping research with chimps would be a threat to human lives. Any reduction in the rate of development of drugs for these diseases will mean hundreds of thousands of people, really millions of people, dying because it would be years of delay, he said. If human lives can be saved, Dr. VandeBerg said, “it would be grossly unethical not to do research” on chimpanzees. Using captive chimpanzees for research in this country dates to the 1920s, when Robert Yerkes, a Yale psychology professor, began to bring them into the country. During the 1950s, the Air Force began to breed chimps for the space program, starting with 65 caught in the wild. Chimps were also bred for AIDS research in the 1980s, which met a dead end. By the mid-1970s, support for preservation of threatened species had grown, and the importing of wild-caught chimps was prohibited.

In 2000, a federal law was passed requiring the government to provide for retirement of chimps it owned after their use in experiments was over, and Chimp Haven opened near Shreveport, La., to care for these chimps and others….Chimp Haven, one potential retirement destination, now has 132 chimps on 200 acres of pine woods… But chimps at research centers might not move at all, even if research is stopped. They might simply stay where they are, exempt from invasive studies…

Read the entire article for additional information and insights.

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this article.

Level: Intermediate -Advanced

Language Skills: reading, writing, speaking,  and listening.

Time: approximately 2 hours.

Materials: article excerpt, vocabulary, comprehension questions, and video clip.

Objectives: Students will examine and evaluate the pros and cons of Chimpanzee experimentation. At the end of this lesson students will debate  this issue based on the information in this lesson. Students will practice reading, speaking, writing and listening skills.

Procedure:

I. Pre-Reading Tasks

A. Prediction: Have students read the title of the post, and analyze the photo(s) to see if they can predict what  information the article will discuss.

B Stimulate background knowledge:

1. Have learners brainstorm to build a list of all of the words they can  think of connected to the terms: Chimpanzee, primates, research, experiment, Jane Goodall,  Wildlife Conservation Society, endangered species.

2. Have students use the KWL graphic organizer (visit ESL Voices organizers )

II. While Reading Tasks

A. Vocabulary

Word Inference

Students are to  infer the meanings of the underlined  words (from the article) and use a dictionary or thesaurus for assistance.

  1. In a dome-shaped outdoor cage, a dozen chimpanzees are hooting.
  2. Chimps’ similarity to humans…
  3. Biomedical research on chimps helped produce a vaccine for hepatitis B
  4. … at the same time inspires intense sympathy.
  5. Biomedical research on chimps helped produce a vaccine
  6. Now, because of a major push by advocacy organizations…
  7. Now is the time to get these chimps out of invasive research
  8. Any of several efforts by opponents “could be the cause of a halt...
  9. Fish and Wildlife Service to declare captive chimps endangered
  10. …it would be grossly unethical not to do research on chimpanzees.

B. Reading Comprehension-

Questions for Understanding True / False

If an idea is true, write (T) if it is false, write (F)  and provide the correct answer from the article.

  1. Chimps’ similarity to humans makes them valuable for research
  2. To many other people, they look like prisoners behind bars.
  3. Now, because of a major push by police organizations, a decision to stop such research in the United States could come within a year.
  4. As it is, the United States is one of only two countries that conduct invasive research on chimpanzees.
  5. The other country that conducts research  is the central African nation of Gabon.
  6. Wayne Pacelle is the  president and chief executive of the ASPCA in the U.S.
  7. John VandeBerg, director of the Southwest National Primate Research Center in San Antonio.
  8. The  Great Ape Protection and Cost Savings Act, now in Congress, would ban invasive research on all great apes (including bonobos, gorillas and orangutans.
  9. If human lives can be saved, Dr. Spock said, “it would be grossly unethical not to do research” on chimpanzees.
  10. Using captive chimpanzees for research in this country dates to the 1920s, when Robert Yerkes, a  Harvard psychology professor, began to bring them into the country.
  11. During the 1950s, the Air Force began to breed chimps for the space program, starting with 65 caught in the wild.
  12. Dogs were also bred for AIDS research in the 1980s, which met a dead end.
  13. Chimp Haven, one potential retirement destination, now has 132 chimps on 200 acres of pine woods.

III. Post- Reading Tasks

A. Reading Comprehension Check

1. WH-question format– Have  learners use the  WH-question format  to discuss or to write about the article.   Students also have the option of filling in the last column of the KWL chart (if they used this in the pre-reading section).

B. Oral Practice

1.   Debate

Divide students into two groups have them debate the pros and cons of experimentation on Chimps. For organization, have students use this nice Pros and Cons Scale organizer (click on photo) from Freeology.com

Pros and Cons Scale chart

C. Writing: Essay
1. Have students choose one of the following topics and write an essay (visit ESL Voices Essay review)

a. Dr. Jane Goodall

b. Southwest National Primate Research Center in San Antonio

c. The Humane Society of the United States

d. The  Jane Goodall Institute

e. the Great Ape Protection and Cost Savings Act

f. AIDS

g. Chimp Chimp Haven opened near Shreveport, La.

IV. Listening Activity

Video Clip: Why Chimp Haven Staff Members Care About Chimpanzees

I. Pre-listening Task

1.Place students in small groups and have them create a list of words they think might come up in the video, based on the title, and photo.
2. Have students create a list of reasons for why they think “we should care about Chimpanzees”.

II. While-listening Tasks

1. Listen to the video clip and write down the reasons staff members give for caring  about Chimpanzees.  Several members give the same reasons. Also, the people speak fast in this video, so students may have to listen several times to hear the reasons.

 Link for video

III. Post-listening Tasks

Questions for Discussion

1. In groups, have students make up questions they would like to ask the staff members of Chimp Haven.

2. Did they agree with everything the speakers said? Why?  Which comments did they disagree with and why?

3. After listening to this video, has their personal idea of primate experimentation changed?  If yes, describe in what way.

4. Writing:

Have students write letters  (as a group, or individually) to the following persons, or institutions either for  supporting Chimpanzees  sanctuaries and  a halt to experimentation (or reasons why experimentation should continue)  on these animals.

Jane Goodall,  The Humane Society, their Congress Representative, John VandeBerg, Great Ape Protection and Cost Savings Act.

5. Take students to a zoo to visit Chimpanzees. Have them write or draw what they felt and thought about the chimps.

ANSWER KEY

Related Videos students might enjoy:

The Chimp Haven Chimpanzee Retirement Sanctuary:  Chimp Haven is a sanctuary for chimpanzees retired from medical research. Watch as some of the more than 100 chimpanzees rediscover their chimpanzee roots.  Note: There is no speaking in this video. For more information visit www.chimphaven.org

Dr. Jane Goodall is interviewed by Q30 from the Albert Schweitzer Institute. An informative, and interesting video to watch and listen to.

Related Articles, lesson plans, and websites:

Fauna (a sanctuary for chimpanzees) Provides a list of FAQ about  chimpanzees. 

Chimpanzee Stories by New York Times 

Wildlife Conservation Society,

Fish and Wildlife Service

National Institutes of Health

The Humane Society of the United States

Southwest National Primate Research Center

Great Ape Protection and Cost Savings Act,

First School fun Lesson Plans for  younger students and Beginners

 

Thank you for using this lesson plan.
Please come back again.

Tags: ,

J.R.R. Tolkien’s The “Hobbit” Revisited: 2012

November 13th, 2011  |  Published in Culture, Education, History, Lesson Plan

There is no doubt J.R.R. Tolkien “The Hobbit”  is a master piece. The great news is that there will be a new book entitled Art of the Hobbit, which is a collection of drawings and paintings Tolkien used to illustrate his book. These have never been seen by the public. In addition a new film adaptation of the story is due out next year.

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this article  With Answer Key.

Note: The styling of these posts has been adjusted to be printer-friendly.

Excerpt: 2012, the year of the Hobbit,CNN Geek Out!

On a blank sheet of paper, for reasons he couldn’t explain, one of the world’s most beloved authors scribbled the words “In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit” – a sentence that would become the opening line to a book that would pave the way into Middle Earth.

J.R.R. Tolkien may not have initially known what the word “hobbit” entailed, but with any great story, it began with a simple idea – an idea that flourished into one of the most celebrated pieces of literature…

Nearly seventy-five years later, Tolkien’s inventive world has continued to endure. And it seems it has also endured beyond his written work– both penning Middle Earth into existence and expanding on his fantasy masterpiece through visual language.

When The Hobbit debuted in 1937, it featured about twenty original drawings, including the popular emerald dust cover imprinted with the misty mountains that Bilbo and his friends pass over in their adventure. Throughout the years, additional Tolkien illustrations have been published in various editions.

Now, to mark next year’s 75th anniversary, HarperCollins has published the Art of the Hobbit, a collection holding never-before-seen drawings and paintings the author used to illustrate his seminal novel.

“I’m delighted that people can be reminded that Professor Tolkien was more than a craftsman with words. He was also an accomplished watercolor artist and illustrator,” Broadway said. “I love that this publication commemorates Tolkien’s artistic design for The Hobbit.”

While preparations were being made for the upcoming anniversary, the illustrations were unearthed in the archive of the Bodleian Library in Oxford. And acclaimed scholars Wayne Hammond and Christina Scull have turned the happy accident into a fantastically rendered book that Tolkienites are sure to devour… A lot of fans have already seen many of Tolkien’s art; however, this is the first time a book has been produced to collectively showcase the prolific author’s own vision of his world. The artwork ranges from an assortment of ink drawings, maps, sketches and watercolors sumptuous with color.

As for how the book is laid out, the editing duo tells CNN that they arranged the artwork in the order of the events in The Hobbit, and to the best order that Tolkien made them…With the word “hobbit” firmly embedded in today’s lexicon, the popularity of Tolkien’s works has grown significantly over the years and has inspired a legion of fans… It’s well acknowledged that Tolkien’s literary work is extensive, especially with the influx of posthumous work…starting with The Silmarillion that was apportioned by Tolkien’s son and literary executor, Christopher Tolkien…All of these reveal new aspects of his genius….

Nobody however knows the world better than Tolkien himself. And now with the release of the Art of the Hobbit, coupled with the 75th anniversary and Peter Jackson’s long-awaited film adaptation set for next year, it will all spark a renewed interest in the book that started it all for Tolkien…“We can all identify with little Bilbo, who discovers a world outside his comfortable home and hidden abilities within himself,” Scull said.“We hope that Tolkien’s visions for The Hobbit will impress themselves upon readers, as a contrast to however the filmmakers interpret their work. And that our book will lead more to read The Hobbit and to form their own personal visions of its characters and world.” Very informative article that should be read in its entirety.

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this article. Note: The styling of these posts has been adjusted to beprinter-friendly.

Level: Intermediate -Advanced

Language Skills: reading. writing, speaking,  and listening.

Time: approximately 2 hours.

Materials: article excerpt, vocabulary, questions for comprehension

Objectives: Students will examine and discuss the information concerning J.R.R. Tolkien,  his new book, and the new release of the film The Hobbit.  At the end of this lesson students will construct their own short stories and poems based on this information. Students will practice reading, speaking, writing and listening skills.

Procedure:

I. Pre-Reading Tasks A. Prediction:

Have students read the title of the post, and survey the photo(s) to see if they can predict what  information the article will discuss.B Stimulate background knowledge: Ask students the following questions:

1. Have you heard of J.R.R. Tolkien?

2. Have you ever read The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien, or seen the film?  If yes, can you briefly explain what it was about?

3. What is folklore? fantasy?

4. Have you ever read any books about giants, fairies, and hobbits in your country? If so briefly describe the story.

5. Use a KWL chart to assist students’ organization. ESL Voices charts and organizers

II. While Reading Tasks

A. Word Inference

Students infer the meanings of the words in bold (from the article) and use a dictionary or thesaurus for assistance.

  1. …one of the world’s most beloved authors scribbled the words
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien may not have initially known what the word “hobbit” entailed…
  3. …an idea that flourished…
  4. Nearly seventy-five years later, Tolkien’s inventive world has continued to endure.
  5. When The Hobbit debuted in 1937,
  6. …the author used to illustrate his seminal novel.
  7. …this publication commemorates Tolkien’s artistic design for The Hobbit.
  8. …book has been produced to collectively showcase the prolific author’s own vision
  9. With the word “hobbit” firmly embedded in today’s lexicon
  10. …Tolkien’s literary work is extensive, especially with the influx of posthumous work…
  11. .starting with The Silmarillion that was apportioned by Tolkien’s son and literary executor…

B.  Word Recognition

Students Circle or underline the correct word in each sentence.  They may reread the paragraph to check their responses.

  1. On a blank / black sheet of paper, for reasons he couldn’t explain, one of the world’s most beloved authors scribbled the words…
  2. J.R.R. Tolkien may not have initially known what the word “hobbit” entangled  / entailed , but with any great story, it began with a simple idea.
  3. …an idea that flourished  / flourish into one of the most celebrated pieces of literature…
  4. Nearly seventy-five years later, Tolkien’s invention/ inventive world has continued to endure.
  5. When The Hobbit  debated/ debuted  in 1937…
  6. Throughout the years, additional Tolkien illustrations / illustrate  have been published in various editions.
  7. “I’m delighted that people can be reminded that Professor Tolkien was more than a craftsman with words.
  8. “I love that this publication commemorates Tolkien’s artistic design for The Hobbit.”
  9. A lot of fans have already seen many of Tolkien’s art;
  10. The artwork ranges from an assorted/ assortment of ink drawings, maps, sketches and watercolors sumptuous with color.

C. Reading Comprehension- True / False

If an idea is true, write (T) if it is false, write (F), and  provide the correct answer from the article.

  1. J.R.R. Tolkien knew what a hobbit was when he wrote the story.
  2. The Art of the Hobbit, is a collection of drawings and paintings Tolkien used to illustrate his book.
  3. Nearly twenty-five years later, Tolkien’s inventive world has continued to endure.
  4. People will be  reminded that Professor Tolkien was craftsman with words.
  5. When The Hobbit debuted in 1937, it featured about thirty original drawings…
  6. Now, to mark next year’s 75th anniversary, HarperCollins has published the Art of the Hobbit, a collection holding never-before-seen drawings…
  7. The book is laid out according to the movie script.
  8. The new film is scheduled to be released next year.
  9. According to the article, the character that people  identify most with is Gandalf.

III. Post Reading Tasks

A. Reading Comprehension Check-

1. WH-question format–

Have  learners use the  WH-question format  to discuss or to write about the article.

Star Wh-Organizer by Education Oasisi

ESL Voices  Graphic Organizers



2.  Writing:  A Story / *Poem  Review ESL Voices Components for  Literary Analysis

In groups,  have students begin a story using the same sentence  Tolkien did: “In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit”…Only have students substitute another word for “hobbit”. They may create any word they’d like.

3. Have students examine the photo from the article, use their imaginations and draw pictures to enhance their stories and poems.

Tolkien used three strong elements in his stories. Maps, trees and plants (especially in describing the Middle Earth) and music (his characters are always singing songs) have students invent maps, and descriptions of their locations for their stories. Have them develop songs or words to songs to accompany their characters. This can be fun.

4. Read the beginning of the Hobbit to students, then have them borrow the book from the library to finish. Or everyday, read a chapter or two from the story (this is good for lower levels). For more advanced, have the students read to the class. To assist you, see the guide questions for teachers by Houghton Mifflin Company.

*Poem by  J. R. R. Tolkien: All That Is Gold Does Not Glitter

IV. Listening Activity

Video Clip:   A Reading of the Hobbit by Saku

Saku reading the Hobbit aloud

A very clear and lively reading by an endearing young man named Saku. He reads part of the first chapter of the Hobbit.

Note: The questions only cover the first four paragraphs from the reading.

 

A. Pre-listening Tasks: Vocabulary Prediction

1. In groups,  have  students make a list of words and phrases they think they will hear in the video, based on the title, and previous information from the article.

B. While Listening Tasks

Chapter 1- An Unexpected Party

Listen to the story then choose the correct answer for the fill-ins.

1. A hobbit hole means____

a.  comfort  b. discomfort  c. happiness

2. The house had a___door painted___

a. square, yellow   b. oval, pink  c. round, green

3.  The door opened onto a tube shaped hall like a ______

a. maze  b. tunnel   c. web

4. It was a very comfortable tunnel without___

a. smoke.    b. dust.    c. leaks.

5.  Inside there were panel walls,  polished chairs, and  lots___ for hats and coats.

a. nails   b. pegs   c. drawers

6. . The hobbit was___of visitors.

a. wary   b. suspicious    c. fond

7. The tunnel wound on into the side of the___.

a. street   b. road   c. hill

8. Many little, round ___opened  out of the hill.

a. doors   b. windows   c. peepholes

9. The hobbit’s  name was_____

a. Biggy   b. Baggins    c.  Bobbins

10. People considered the Baggins to be very ____

a. unfriendly  b. friendly  c. respectable

11.  List some physical descriptions of  a hobbit.

12. Who was Belladonna Took?

C. Post-Listening Tasks

1. In groups, have students make up questions they would like to ask the speaker.

2. Place students in groups and give them  five minutes to sum up the main ideas in the video.

3. Role Play: have students practice roles for each of the characters they’ve met in the story thus far. After, have each group  dramatize their interpretations for the class.

ANSWER KEY

Useful Related Sources:

The New York Times Chapter 1 of  The HobbitAn Unexpected Party

Tolkien-Online A delightful site that provides the usual bio of the author, and descriptions and details for some of the characters in Tolkien’s books, including Lord of the Rings.

The Tolkien Society This site provides bibliographical listings, books by and about J.R.R. Tolkien, and other interesting information.

Wikipedia Biography of Tolkien: Includes a photograph of the author at a young age.

The Tolkien Library Provides a concise biography of the author, includes photos of Tolkien at an older age, and one of his wife.

Thank you for using this lesson plan.
Please come back again.

Tags:

Robots On the Ground, In Space…and On the Sea!

November 10th, 2011  |  Published in Education, Technology

An exciting new robot has been introduced by  Computer scientist James Gosling, of Liquid Robotics. His robots called Wave Gliders,  are unmanned maritime vehicles that have the ability to perform the tasks that (very expensive) ships used to fulfill.

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this post with Answer Key.

A Wave Glider being launched off the coast of California. NYT.Excerpt: Catching a Wave, and Measuring It By Quentin Hardy, New York Times

James Gosling wants to network the world’s oceans.

Mr. Gosling is transforming a fleet of robots that move out in the ocean to measure everything from weather to oil slicks, sharply reducing many of the costs of ocean-related businesses.

If his plans sound rather extreme, consider this: Mr. Gosling designed of one of the most influential and widely used computer languages, Java. The Silicon Valley company he joined, Liquid Robotics, has raised serious money to accomplish the mission — $40 million, including $22 million in June from VantagePoint Capital Partners and Schlumberger, the oilfield services company.

Liquid Robotics’ product, a Wave Glider, is about the size of a surfboard. Using a wave-based propulsion system and two solar panels to fuel its computers, the robots travel slowly over the ocean, recording data. The sensor data is crunched onboard by low-power cellphone chips, and then shipped by satellite or cellphone to big onshore computers that do complex analysis.

Getting a computer out into the middle of the ocean is a pretty big challenge, but that is the attractive thing…Three-quarters of the planet is ocean, and it’s still dark to us.

Liquid Robotics is working toward networking tens of thousands of the craft, adding sensors and onboard computing capability so the robots can manage themselves during oceangoing projects lasting years. Right now, the robots work solo.

This is a bit like 1960 in the Space Age, when they had launched just a few satellites, said Edward Lu, a former astronaut who is in charge of “innovative applications” at the company. Space is now a normal part of life, used for television transmission, credit card transactions and driving directions. We can do the same thing with the sea.

Liquid Robotics has sold Wave Gliders to the Federal National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration…The company has built about 70 Wave Gliders since 2009, largely for use by the petroleum industry and marine scientists. The company builds another 40 of the devices every three months… Other firms, like iRobot, also make seagoing robots with sensors, but these tend to be used for underwater work and aren’t designed to be networked. When the Wave Gliders talk with each other, Mr. Gosling said, they can be used to signal other robots to join them on missions like measuring the size of an oil slick or an algae bloom, or determining patterns of mid ocean currents, alerting ships to avoid or seek them, saving on fuel costs… He also needs to figure out ways the robots can navigate on their own. Currently onshore pilots manage 10 to 15 gliders at a time… There are other hazards. One craft was bitten by a shark. It lost a sensor, but still managed to make it to a rescue craft… The robots move at about one and a half knots, powered by underwater wings connected to the surface vessel by a 22-foot strap…As further proof of concept, the company hopes to pilot a Wave Glider through a hurricane.” read more…

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this post

Level: Intermediate -Advanced

Language Skills: reading, speaking, writing, and listening.

Time: approximately 2 hours.

Materials: article excerpt, vocabulary, questions for comprehension and discussion, video with questions.

Objectives: Students will review the information concerning the new Wave Glider robots. At the end of this lesson students will discus their own opinions as to what they think about these, and similar robots.  Students will practice their reading, speaking, writing, and listening skills.

I. Pre-Reading Tasks

Prediction

Directions: Have students read the title of the post, along with the title of the article. Then have students survey the photos to see if they can predict what the article will be about.

Stimulate background knowledge 

Directions: Have learners brainstorm to build a list of all of the words they can think of connected to the terms: robot, ocean, Wave Glider, Java. Have students use  a brainstorming (see sample from UIE) chart for assistance.

 

II. While Reading Tasks

  • Vocabulary 

Word Inference

Directions: Students infer the meanings of the words in bold (from the article) and use a dictionary or thesaurus for assistance.

  1. James Gosling wants to network the world’s oceans.
  2. Mr. Gosling is transforming a fleet of robots…
  3. …to measure everything from weather to oil slicks…
  4. Mr. Gosling designed of one of the most influential and widely used computer languages, Java.
  5. Using a wave-based propulsion system…
  6. The sensor data is crunched onboard by low-power cellphone chips
  7. …then shipped by satellite or cellphone to big onshore computers that do complex analysis.
  8. … adding sensors and onboard computing capability…
  9. …Edward Lu, a former astronaut who is in charge of  innovative applications...
  10. When the Wave Gliders talk with each other…they can be used to signal other robots to join them on missions
  11. He also needs to figure out ways the robots can navigate on their own.
  12. The robots move at about one and a half knots

 

  • Reading Comprehension

Fill-ins

Directions: Have students match the letter of the phrases to complete the sentences taken from the article.

1. James Gosling wants___

a. to network the world’s oceans.

b. to capture sharks.

c.  to sail around the world.

2. Mr. Gosling designed___

a. a ship

b. a computer.

c. of one of the most influential and widely used computer languages, Java.

3. The Silicon Valley company he joined___ has raised serious money to accomplish the mission.

a. Wave gliders

b. Silicone Valley Computers

c. Liquid Robotics

4. Liquid Robotics’ product, a Wave Glider, is about the size___

a. a boat

b. of a surfboard.

c. a ship

5. Using a wave-based propulsion system and two solar panels to fuel its computers, the robots___

a.  travel slowly over the ocean, recording data.

b. travel fast recording data.

c. don’t travel but remain stationary.

6. Three-quarters of the planet is___

a. oxygen

b. earth

c.  ocean, and it’s still dark to us.

7. Liquid Robotics is working toward___ adding sensors and onboard computing capability.

a. gathering more people to work the crafts

b.  networking tens of thousands of the craft

c. gathering more money

8. Right now, the robots work___

a. together

b. solo

c. with other units.

9. ___is now a normal part of life, used for television transmission, credit card transactions and driving directions.

a.  Space

b. water

c. earth

10. The company has built___  largely for use by the petroleum industry and marine scientists.

a.  about 70 Wave Gliders since 2009

b. about 45 Wave Gliders since 2009

c. about 50 Wave gliders since 2009.

 

III. Post Reading Tasks

  • Reading Comprehension Check

 WH-questions

Directions: Have students use the  WH-question format to discuss or to write the main points from the article.

Who or What is the article about?

Where does the action/event take place?

When does the action/event take place?

Why did the action/event occur?

How did the action/event occur?

  • Discussion/Writing Tasks 

Directions: Place students in groups and have them answer the following questions. After, have the groups share their thoughts as a class. To reinforce the ideas, students can write an essay on one of the topics.

1.  What other future uses can you think of for the Wave Glider?

2. Discuss whether the Google Self-Driving car is really a robot.

3. What are the potential uses for robots to assist the elderly?

4. Discuss the potential use of robots in emergency situations (e.g., natural disasters, crimes, medical emergencies, military)

IV. Listening Activity 

Video Clip: Becoming Bionic, by R. Lee Douglas, New York Times

Robert Woo with exoskeleton. photo NYT

Robert Woo regains the ability to walk with help from an exoskeleton.

While Listening Tasks

  Questions for focused listening

Directions: Click on the link to view the video and have students answer the following questions.

1. How did Robert Woo feel about using the exoskeleton at first?

2. What was  the name of the  rehabilitation Center?

3. Basically,  what does the exoskeleton help people to do?

4. What are the steps to using the exoskeleton?

5. how many children does Woo have and what are their ages?

6. Because his children watch cartoons, who did they think their father was turning into?

7. How did the other patients feel when they saw Woo using the exoskeleton?

Post-Listening Tasks

Questions for Discussion

1. In groups, have students make up questions they would like to ask Robert Woo, or anyone else in the video.

2.  Discuss  other ways  the exoskeleton might be used to assist people.

ANSWER KEY: Wave Glider

Thank you for using this lesson plan.
Please come back again.

Tags: ,