Nature, well-being & poetry

St George is around the corner and this year we will focus on our Erasmus + project about nature and well-being. 

Connecting with nature is known to have lots of positive effects on our mental health and well-being. It could mean growing plants, tending to vegetables, going for a walk, relaxing in a local green space and generally embracing it!

Poets from all centuries have found inspiration in nature to create their poems and express their feelings. Poetry helps express emotions and creates a connection with the reader. 

I. This year, you will have to create a calligram. Do you know what a calligram is? What is the name of a famous poet who created calligrams?

A calligram is made of two words (calli = beautiful, gram = message). They use the design and shape of the letters, the ink color, the paper quality, and the frame, to deliver a combined effect and communicate something beyond the message of the letters themselves.

II. Observe examples of calligrams:

Source: https://jenikirbyhistory.getarchive.net

Source: https://jenikirbyhistory.getarchive.net

What do you think this poem is about, just looking at the form? What do you think the poet’s mood and feelings were when he wrote it? This is a poem by Gillaume Apollinaire and the original language is French. Click here to check out an English version. What do you think it is about?

What about this other one? What is it? Read the poem. What feeling do you get?

III. Now it’s your turn to be a poet. Follow the steps to write your calligram. First you write the poem and then you will design the form.

STEP 1. Think about the topic (it must be related to nature and well-being)

STEP 2. Brainstorm ideas. Use the dictionary to find words that you may need. How does the topic you chose make you feel? Think about adjectives, actions that you may use to express your feelings.

Cambridge Dictionary / Wordreference

STEP 3. Write your poem. Remember that every line in a poem is called a VERSE. Is your poem going to rhyme? Check the following document to see some rhetorical devices you can use.

STEP 4. Design the shape and create your calligram!

Students’ worksheet

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How to Change the World by Being an Influencer


I. NUMBERS. Listen to the video and write the missing numbers. 

Two and a half seven two and a half 350 million Half a billion
  • In 2009, Facebook had ____________ active users.
  • Today, Instagram has about _______________ active users.
  • Facebook has ___________________ active users.
  • ____________of the world is on some kind of social media platform.
  • According to research of 2019, we spend________________ hours per day per user
  • By the end of our lifetime, the Bureau of Labour and Statistics is predicting that this generation of users will have spent ____________years of their lives on social media that’s more than housecleaning, shopping, in-person socialization combined.

II. (1:20) EFFECTS OF SOCIAL MEDIA. Note down the adjectives the speaker uses to describe how people feel after interacting on social media. 

  • 50% of social media users would say that they feel : a____________ or e________________ after interacting on social media
  • Other people indicate they feel e______________, depressed, i______________, lonely, d_______________ with life.
  • University of Pensilvannia correlated the _______________time we spend on social media the_________________ the likelihood of negative effects on our physical health, on our mental health and on our general life satisfaction.

III. (2:20) Listen to this part of the video and answer the question.

What other perspective does the woman want us to take when we log in to social media?

IV. (3:07) Tick the examples the speaker gives to describe how our culture tells us that an influencer is: 

  • Visions of a fire festival and boats going to islands that don’t exist
  • People sharing their lives
  • Young people playing video games while giving their opinion on different topics
  • Many women or fashion influencers who are showing you what they are wearing in front of a mirror
  • People commenting on what other people do.
  • One person who continually pops to the top of your feed trying to sell you a product you don’t want and you don’t need

V. (3:37) What does the dictionary say? Fill in the gaps.

Influence: 

The _________________ to have an _______________ on the character, behaviour, or development of someone or something.

VI. What is the conclusion the speaker reaches from this definition?

VII. In pairs, discuss what the speaker means when she says we can all be influencers. How? Give examples.

STUDENTS’ WORKSHEET

TEACHER’S WORKSHEEET

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Charities to make this world better

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 We have been talking about how people can help other people. One way is donating to charitable organizations. 

I. How many charities do you know? In pairs, take one minute to think of as many organizations as you can. What type of organizations are they?

II. Go to the following website and complete the information about the types of charities that we may find. 

III. In pairs, choose a charity you find interesting and prepare a presentation. Follow the steps:

STEP 1. Choose a charity you think it’s interesting.

STEP 2. Go to Google and find information about it.

  • What type of organization is it?
  • Explain the history of the organization. When was it founded? In what countries do they work? How many people support this organization?
  • What actions do they take to raise money for their projects?
  • Choose one of the projects they have been working on and summarise it.
  • Why did you choose this charity? Why do you think it is important to support it?

STEP 3. Prepare a presentation. You can use any tool: Canva, Google Slides, Prezi, etc… Remember to add royalty free pictures and not down the source below the photo. 

 

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Horror Story Contest

Halloween’s coming!

I. Do you like horror stories? Why / why not? Why do you think some people love them?

II. Watch the following video and check what the ingredients of a horror story are. Listen and choose the correct option.

[Thanks to Clara Navarra]

This year you are going to record a horror story for a school contest. The best horror story will be watched in the classes on Halloween day. 

III.  First, you will have to write it.

[Activities designed by Anna Asián]

a) Let’s go through the structure and language of a horror story. Then, in groups, you are going to answer the questions to come up with ideas about how your story will be. Use this worksheet to note down your ideas.

b) Think about the vocabulary you will need.

c) Now it’s time to write your story. You can use the dictionary if you don’t know how to say something. (Cambridge Dictionary / Wordreference)

IV. Now, it’s time to record your story and create a video to illustrate it. Check this example:

a) Firstly, practice your pronunciation. Everybody needs to participate, so you need to decide who is going to say or read what. PRACTICE YOUR PRONUNCIATION AND CHECK WITH YOUR TEACHER.

b) While you’re reading, you can include sounds (a door creaking, a dog howling…). In this website, you will find different sounds.

c) You can record real images or use animation. There are different tools you can use: Animaker, Moovly, Canva, Animoto.

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Resources for higher level students

Source: Deposit Photos

What is your level of English? Take a free online test to know it.

VOCABULARY

  1. Check Joe-Flo’s word bank every day.
  2. Choose a topic from the list, listen to the video and do the exercises below. Remember to note down the new vocabulary.

GRAMMAR

  1. How are question tags used in English? Check it out and do the exercises at the bottom of the page.

READING

  1. Choose a piece of news from the paper and look up the words in the dictionary. Remember to note down the new words you learn (write the definition in English, the translation and an example). Once you’re done reading, you can write a summary and send it to your teacher.
  2. Go to the school library and choose a book to read. When you finish, write a review of the book for the school website.

WRITING

  1. Do the writing task and send it to your teacher for correction.
  2. Choose a task from the list: B1 tasks or B2 tasks. Do it and send it to your teacher for correction.

LISTENING

  1. Choose a listening topic from the list and do the exercises. Choose a B1 level or a B2 level of English.

B2 TESTS

  1. You can do some tests to practice for the First Certificate exam.
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Are all influencers a good influence?

Source: Pixabay

I. Do this consumer survey in groups of three/four and compare your answers. (Source: Together4-Oxford)

  1. a. What do you spend most money on?
  2. b. Are you saving for anything at the moment?
  3. c. Which shops or products are good value and which are a rip-off?
  4. d. What luxury brand would you buy if you could afford it?
  5. e. What products are popular with your age group at the moment?
  6. f. Which companies have the best marketing advertisements?

II. Some important brands use influencers to promote their products. In groups, discuss the following questions: (Source: Together4-Oxford)

  1. Do you follow any online bloggers, comedians, or tutorials? Which ones?
  2. Do you think that marketing influences you?
  3. Do you know any famous influencers? On what social media do you follow them? What do they promote?

III. If you were an influencer, what type would you be? Do the following quizzes to know it. Share your results with the people in your group.

IV. In groups, go to your social media and find examples of influencers. What type of influencers are they? For example, sport stars (fitness, yoga)…

V. Many brands use influencers to promote their products. Do you know any successful influencer marketing campaign on Instagram or TikTok?

In groups, you are going to read some examples. Answer the questions and then explain it to the rest of the class.

20 Influencer Marketing Examples
12 Examples of Influencer Marketing

Worksheet (Template)

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Christmas Ads 2021

Time for some Christmas ads!

Can you remember any special Christmas ad? What is the message they generally send?

In groups, watch one of the ads and explain it to the rest of the class. Try to do it with as many details as possible. Which story do you think is more interesting?

Now, watch them all. Who described them best? Does the best description match the best ad according to you?

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Writing a Horror Story

[Activity designed by Anna Asián]

I. What makes a horror story a horror story?

II. Watch the short tutorial on how to make your writing suspenseful and then answer the questions.

1. According to classic horror writer H.P. Lovecreaft, what creates the strongest kind of fear in a story?
 
a) Monsters
 
b) Fountains of blood
 
c) Fear of the unknown
 
d) Things that jump out

 

2. What effect does “a state of suspense” have on the audience?
 
a) The audience is terrified
 
b) The audience is satisfied
 
c) The audience does not know what’s going on
 
d) The audience anticipates what’s coming next
3. A “limited” point of view means that . . .
 
a) the story is told from the perspective of an omniscient narrator
 
b) the story is told from the perspective of a character who doesn´t really know what is happening or why
 
c) the audience knows more than the characters themselves
 
d) the story is told from the point of view of various characters
4. Suspense and tension can be created by . . .
 
a) using vivid imagery
 
b) setting the scene in a dark, sinister or deserted palce
 
c) using short or fragmented sentences
 
d) all of the above
5. “Dramatic irony” means occurs when . . .
 
a) the narrator says the opposite of what s/he means
 
b) the story is funny and serious at the same time
 
c) the audience knows elements of the story that the characters don´t know
 
d) the audience is kept in the dark until the end of the story

III. Now it’s time to write your story.

a) First of all let’s check the guidelines to write a horror story.

b) Now have a look at this specific vocabulary. What words are you going to use in your story?

Now you’ve already got the basics to write your story. Hands on!

IV. Once you’ve written your story, go through this rubric to check out whether your writing follows all the steps to be a perfect scary story. 

V. Design a booklet for your story.

 – Design a cover and choose a title for your story.

 – On the second page write a bio about the author (that’s you!)

 – Then write the story

 – Design the back cover. Write a summary or blurb and a design to illustrate it.

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Cinquain

Saint George is coming!!!!

It’s time to participate in the school’s literary contest. This year we are going to write a cinquain.

But what is a cinquain?

Have a look at this cinquain poem by Khaled, an adult intermediate-level ESOL student at the University of Oregon:

Nature
by Khaled

Nature 
Beautiful, pure 
Refreshing, enjoying, relaxing
Nature is healthy. 
Fun

I. A cinquain is a 5-line poem. An what is its structure? Match these parts of speech to the 5 lines in the poem:

PART OF SPEECH EXAMPLE IN THE POEM
a) 2 adjectives. They describe the noun in line 1.
b) 1 short, complete sentence about the noun in line 1.
c) 1 noun. This is a synonym for the noun in line 1.
d) 1 noun. This is the topic or theme of the poem.
e) 3 gerunds (verb + ing). They describe the noun in line 1.

II. Now check the structure:

 

Other examples:

River 
by Miki

River 
Clear, wonderful 
Slapping, whirling, flowing 
The river is cold. 
Water

Dove 
by Min

Dove 
Active, free 
Flying, sitting, crying 
A dove is free. 
Bird

Have a look at the poems written by Mireia Xortó’s students.

Now it’s your turn!!!!

[All activities inspired by PIZZAZ & the University of Oregon and the post has been adapted from Mireia Xortó’s blog]

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