From the Library
The Count of Monte Cristo, commonly known as 巌窟王 (The King of the Cavern) in Japanese, is considered to be a literary classic.
This edition from Pearson, at the A2 vocabulary level, and a mere 12,000 words, is perhaps stretching the truth a bit with its title.
The actual novel is a whopping 464,162 words long. Wikipedia even has a diagram of character relationships to help confused readers remember how everyone in the story is connected. The book in the Square One library is obviously much simpler!
Inevitably, trying to cram such an enormous story into such a small book is an impossible challenge. Consequently, with limited space, this version of the Count is much kinder and considerably less intent on revenge.
This short little novel really isn’t the real thing. Nonetheless, if you are a fan of the original story through movies, television or translation, why not give it a try? It is an important story in Western literature and has had a huge influence on many other writers.
Visit the SQ1 Library by clicking here.
SQ1 Original Content – Night Owls & Monsters (CEFR B1 )
Are you a lark or a night owl? Are you an early riser who wakes up with the sun? Or are you prone to oversleeping because the TV tempted you to stay awake late into the night? Do you find it easy to fall fast asleep? Or do you often find yourself wide awake late at night? Do you count sheep to try and drift off into the land of nod? Or do you pass out the moment your heavy head lands on your pillow?
Personally, I am very jealous of natural early risers. By nature I am a night owl. My own body clock, my circadian rhythm, does not fit with my work schedule. When I wake up in the morning, I am not bright eyed and bushy tailed. I am a zombie in search of black coffee. I need my morning caffeine boost like a vampire craves blood. I am a grumpy little goblin man until I get my first cup.
The world is not kind to us night owls. Society is built for larks and run by them. So if you happen to be a lark who lives with a night owl, please be kind to them. Put a pot of coffee on when you wake up, it will soothe the monster for a little while… until the next morning if you are lucky.
Study Tips – Steal from TED Talks
When I teach my Presenting Skills class at university, the main thing I have my students do is watch TED talks. What better way to learn how to present in English than to watch what professionals do?
Despite my warnings, my students often make a mistake about what to focus on in their first homework. They focus on the big, long, academic words used by the presenters. They watch scientific presentations and come to class with serious sounding words that I have heard before, but don’t know well at all; because I am not a neuroscientist or astrophysicist.
The mistake they make is overlooking the little words. More specifically the chunks of little words.
I looked at a very popular TED talk and found these great chunks of language:
“But what if we could…?”
“So what have we learned?”
“The clearest message that we get from this is…”
“… keep us happier and healthier.”
“I’d like to close with a quote from…”
Plagiarism is often a problem because nervous students steal without thinking. It’s not a problem when they steal the right stuff, the stuff they can recycle again and again and again and… you get the idea.
Quotes from this TED talk.
Thanks for taking the time to read Issue #4 of The Square One Reader.
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