It's a Sunday afternoon in Washington, D.C. Anna is bored. She finds something interesting to do when she hears music playing.
In this video, learn to say the new words. Learn to talk about cause and effect. You can also download the Activity Sheet and practice talking about your usual - and unusual - activities.
In this video, you learn about what happens when two words with same sound come together.
Anna: Hello! In Washington D.C. there are many things to do on a Sunday afternoon. I like to exercise. I like to shop. I like to garden. But today I feel bored. When I feel bored I always look for something unusual to do! I hear music. Let’s go see! What is going on here?
Rebecca: It’s a big birthday party for the writer William Shakespeare.
Anna: This is a party for William Shakespeare?
Anna: This is a drum band. I never listen to a drum band. But today I am listening to a drum band because it’s Shakespeare’s birthday!
Anna: This is a puppet show. I never watch puppet shows. But today I am watching a puppet show because it’s Shakespeare’s birthday!
Anna: My clothes are usual. His clothes are unusual.
Anna: In Washington, D.C. seeing a politician or even the President is usual. Seeing the Queen of England is very unusual! Your majesty!
Anna: This is sword fighting. I never sword fight. But today I am sword fighting because it’s Shakespeare’s birthday!
Anna: There are many things to do on a Sunday in Washington, D.C. -- some usual, some unusual.
Anna: Today, I am not bored because … it is William Shakespeare’s birthday!
What do you usually do on a Sunday afternoon? (Or on your day off.) Send us an email or write about how frequently you do different activities in the Comments section. Click on the image below to download the Activity Sheet and practice with a friend.
Learning Strategies are the thoughts and actions that help make learning easier or more effective.
The learning strategy for this lesson is Make an Inference. Learning English is easier when you can make an inference about meaning. Here is an example.
Rory is traveling. At the airport, he is looking for his airline when he walks into a woman by mistake. She yells at him, "Hey, don't be so inconsiderate! Watch where you're going!" Rory does not know the word "inconsiderate." But the woman's angry face and loud voice help him to understand that she is angry. He makes the inference that "inconsiderate" means "rude," or "impolite," and he quickly apologizes. "Oh, I'm very sorry! I am looking for the airline desk." The woman say, "Okay, but be more careful."
How do you make inferences in studying English? Write to us in the Comments section or send us an email. Teachers, see the Lesson Plan for more details on teaching this strategy.
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band – n. a usually small group of musicians who play popular music together
because – conj. for the reason that
birthday - n. the day when someone was born or the anniversary of that day
bored – adj. tired and annoyed by too much of the same thing; not interested
drum - n. a musical instrument that is made with a thin layer of skin or plastic stretched over the end of a round frame and that is played by hitting the skin or plastic with sticks or with your hands
exercise – v. physical activity that is done in order to become stronger and healthier
fight - v. to use weapons or physical force to try to hurt someone, to defeat an enemy, etc. or to struggle in battle or physical combat
party - n. a social event in which entertainment, food, and drinks are provided
politician - n. someone who is active in government usually as an elected official
President - n. the head of the government in some countries
puppet - n. a doll that is moved by putting your hand inside it or by pulling strings or wires that are attached to it
Queen - n. a woman who rules a country and who usually inherits her position and rules for life
shop – v. to visit places where goods are sold in order to look at and buy things
show - n. a performance in a theater that usually includes singing and dancing
sword - n. a weapon with a long metal blade that has a sharp point and edge
unusual - adj. different or strange in a way that attracts attention
usual – adj. done, found, or used most of the time or in most cases, or normal or regular
watch - v. to look at (someone or something) for an amount of time and pay attention to what is happening
Download the VOA Learning English Word Book for a dictionary of the words we use on this website.
Each Let's Learn English lesson has an Activity Sheet for extra practice on your own or in the classroom. In this lesson, you can use it to practice a conversation about activities.
See the Lesson Plan for this lesson for ideas and more teaching resources. Send us an email if you have comments on this course or questions.
Grammar focus: Frequency adverbs, cause and effect phrases
Topics: Usual and unusual activities
Learning Strategy: Make an Inference
Speaking & Pronunciation Focus: Using frequency adverbs to talk about cause and effect; blended sounds
Now it's your turn. Send us an email or write to us in the Comments section below or on our Facebook page to let us know what you think of this lesson.