Saturday, 7 April 2018

A flipped lesson about A Christmas Carol, C. Dickens and the Victorian Era



Every year at Christmas time I talk about A Christmas Carol in my classes for many different reasons. It is a wonderful Christmas tale and it allows to study some aspects of British literature, as well. We usually watch the last Disney movie and we read some excerpts from the book.
This year I thought of a flipped lesson. Students have to gather information and do some research about the tale before watching the movie or reading the book. Then, they will discuss the topics concerning the novella, the author and the Victorian Era in their classroom. As a teacher, I will just provide the learning material, suggest the websites to surf outside the classroom and guide my students to apply their knowledge during class activities.
As usual, I prepared a lesson with the help of some digital tools. I created a mindmap with Cacoo and I made it interactive with Thinglink.
If you move the cursor over the image below, some icons will appear. Click on them to open the links. You will find some information about Charles Dickens, the main characters of his novella and some fun activities.





The following is a deepening on the Victorian Era for more advanced students. I prepared this mindmap with Popplet. You will find some videos, links and a PowerPoint presentation. 
Click on the image below to open it.



Inside the classroom the students will discuss what they have learned outside the classroom. They will actively and interactively apply their knowledge.

Some ideas for class discussion

  • What are the moral lessons in this story?
  • Describe how Scrooge changes during the night of Christmas Eve.
  • Would a visit from the three spirits of the tale impact your life? How?
  • How would you describe the Victorian Era?
  • Can we see any typical aspects of the Victorian Age in the novella? 
  • What is Dickens' position towards the social problems of his era?

The following are some quotations from "A Christmas Carol".
Can you tell me who and when pronounces these words?


“I wear the chain I forged in life....I made it link by link, and yard by yard; I girded it on of my own free will, and of my own free will I wore it.” 

 “You may be an undigested bit of beef, a blot of mustard, a crumb of cheese, a fragment of underdone potato. There's more of gravy than of grave about you, whatever you are!” 

 “They are Man's and they cling to me, appealing from their fathers. This boy is Ignorance and this girl is Want. Beware them both, and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy for on his brow I see that written which is Doom, unless the writing be erased.” 

 “I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future. The Spirits of all Three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach!” 

"Business!" he cried, wringing its hands again. "Mankind was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance, and benevolence, were, all, my business. The deals of my trade were but a drop of water in the comprehensive ocean of my business!” 

 “Bah," he said, "Humbug.” 

 “And therefore, Uncle, though it has never put a scrap of gold or silver in my pocket, I believe that [Christmas] has done me good, and will do me good; and I say, God bless it!” 

 “If they would rather die, . . . they had better do it, and decrease the surplus population.” 

 “God bless us, every one!” 

 “Come in, -- come in! and know me better, man! Look upon me! You have never seen the like of me before!” 

 “Christmas is a poor excuse every 25th of December to pick a man's pockets.” 

 “Are there no prisons?” 

“I am as light as a feather, I am as happy as an angel, I am as merry as a schoolboy. I am as giddy as a drunken man. A merry Christmas to everybody! A happy New Year to all the world! Hallo here! Whoop! Hallo!”  


If you need more information here is a list of some Charles Dickens websites:
http://www.shmoop.com/charles-dickens/websites.html

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Are you a cell phone addict?


😨 Are you a cell phone addict? 😨


“With the development of technologies and a wide variety of the latest mobile devices available in stores, the new form of obsession appears within a recent decade. It is a mobile phone addiction, and its symptoms can be found among people almost in any part of the world. Especially, it is a problem for the younger generation.


Lost In The Web – Mobile phone addiction symptoms
Cell phone addiction in teenagers shows up in various forms and different everyday life situations. Kids are using their mobile devices like a drug – when they are bored, tired and lazy, when feeling angry or lonely.

Most common mobile phone addiction symptoms are:

  • A constant need to use a cell phone more often.
  • Loss of sense of time while surfing online.
  • Failed attempts to use a mobile device less.
  • Feelings of anxiety or being depressed.
  • Preferring using a cell phone instead of spending time with family and friends.
  • Feeling restless or irritable when a mobile phone or network is unreachable.
  • Craving for the latest models of mobile devices and the newest applications.


There is also a number of physical effects caused by teenage cell phone addiction, such as fingers, neck and back tension, itchy eyes, insomnia, weight change, changes in diet, fatigue, difficulties in focusing on one subject, distracted attention, etc.

Overall, teen cell phone addiction often leads to problems and failures in studies as well as loss of interest in hobbies, sports, and outdoor activities. In some cases, it can also cause social loneliness, loss of friends, staying isolated.”                     
(source: pumpic.com)

Click on the link below to read some information about teens cell phone addiction:
http://www.psychguides.com/guides/teen-cell-phone-addiction/

Watch the video!

You should learn how to use your cell phone properly.


Surf the following website to learn what Cell Phone Etiquette is:
http://www.wikihow.com/Practice-Cell-Phone-Etiquette



And now some tests!

Mobile phones and teens: read and do some exercises.
http://learnenglishteens.britishcouncil.org/uk-now/read-uk/mobile-phones

VIDEO + QUIZ
http://www.eslvideo.com/eslvideo_quiz_int.php?id=23266


Wednesday, 28 September 2016

The Middle Ages and its castles



People use the phrase “Middle Ages” to describe Europe between the fall of Rome in 476 AD and the beginning of the Reinassance in the 14th century. Many scholars call this era the “medieval period” instead. “Middle Ages, they say, incorrectly implies that the period is an insignificant blip sandwiched between two much more important epochs.
The phrase “Middle Ages” tells us more about the Renaissance that followed it than it does about the era itself. Starting around the 14th century, European thinkers, writers and artists began to look back and celebrate the art and culture of ancient Greece and Rome. Accordingly, they dismissed the period after the fall of Rome as a “Middle” or even “Dark” age in which no scientific accomplishments had been made, no great art produced, no great leaders born. This way of thinking about the era in the “middle” of the fall of Rome and the rise of the Renaissance prevailed until relatively recently. However, today’s scholars note that the era was as complex and vibrant as any other.
(History.com)


During the Middle Ages many castles were built in Europe and in the Middle East. A medieval castle was the fortified home of an important person, a lord or king. They ranged from simple wooden enclosures to vast stone palaces. From the castle the lord could control his land and keep his family and treasure safe from rivals while he was at war.






Now surf the following interactive map I made by Cacoo and Thinglink. Move your cursor over the image and some links will appear. Click on the image to enlarge.






























Tuesday, 13 September 2016

The European Union



The European Union is a unique economic and political union between 28 European countries that together cover much of the continent.
The EU was created in the aftermath of the Second World War. The first steps were to foster economic cooperation: the idea being that countries that trade with one another become economically interdependent and so more likely to avoid conflict.
The result was the European Economic Community (EEC), created in 1958, and initially increasing economic cooperation between six countries: Belgium, Germany, France, Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands. Since then, a huge single market has been created and continues to develop towards its full potential. 



Surf the following interactive image I made using Cacoo and Thinglink. Clic on the imag to enlarge.






BREXIT UPDATES


Monday, 13 June 2016

Queen Elizabeth II celebrates her 90th birthday this year. She celebrates two birthdays each year: her actual birthday, on April 21st, and her official birthday, on the second Saturday in June.



Surf the following sites to get more information.


Queen Elizabeth II
https://www.royal.uk/her-majesty-the-queen


The Queen' s birthday
https://www.royal.uk/queens-birthday







The Queen in 90 images. One picture from every year of her life.
http://www.bbc.com/news/in-pictures-36013958






Birthday' s celebrations:
http://www.standard.co.uk/lifestyle/london-life/the-queen-s-90th-how-elizabeth-iis-official-birthday-will-be-celebrated-in-london-a3264811.html





Videos

The Queen at 90

Trooping the Colour 2016

Some information about the UK form of government

Surf my mindmap. You can also click here to open the image.