From the Library
The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Stories is a wonderful first step into reading gothic literature. Retold by Adrian Kelly, these tales are still as spooky as Poe intended.
Illustrations also help the reader to get a better picture of some of the scenes described.
It’s a level 3 book from Pearson written at the A2 CEFR level, that means it is suitable for beginners and lower intermediate students.
It’s 11000+ word count sounds like a lot, but it would only take a student an hour or so to read. As it is actually 5 short stories it’s a nice choice for reading just 1 story a day.
SQ1 Original Content – Losing your Cool (CEFR B1/B2 Level)
Losing your cool is an English idiom. It means that you fail to stay calm and controlled. It means you got angry. It means you lost your temper. It means you snapped.
Will Smith lost his cool at the Oscars when he slapped comedian Chris Rock in the face live on international television.
It was a huge shock to everyone involved. The audience were not sure whether it was real or not. They probably assumed it was a bit, a comedy routine, that was part of the show. When Smith continued to shout after returning to his seat it was clear this was no performance. This was real life.
In real life, if you slapped a comedian on stage you would be thrown out of the venue and most likely arrested. Indeed, you probably wouldn’t be able to reach the stage before a security guard tackled you. In Hollywood the rules are different for A-List celebrities. What security guard would want to tackle Will Smith?
An hour or so later, after refusing to leave the venue voluntarily, Smith won an Oscar for his performance in the movie King Richard. The crowd even applauded his acceptance speech. It was a truly bizarre moment.
A man violently assaulted another person because of a joke. He then received a prize. It was a deeply embarrassing night for most of Hollywood, but it was a shameful night for Will Smith.
Study Tips – Mini-Dictionaries
Sometimes dictionaries are not very helpful. They give you a long list of words and you don’t know which one is the best fit. When you are a language learner it’s really tough to pick the right word for the right place and the right time.
Topic dictionaries can help you. A topic dictionary is a mini-dictionary. It collects the most common words you might need and arranges them by theme or topic.
They also tell you what level the word is. If it’s an A1 word you definitely need to know that as soon as possible. If it’s a C2 word you can avoid studying that until later if you want.
The Oxford Learner’s Dictionaries website has a collection of topic dictionaries you can use for free. Please give them a try!
Visit the topic dictionaries page by clicking here.
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Representative Partner @ Square One Japan Ltd.