Surviving the Heat Wave | ESL Listening Comprehension

Hello, again. Last night, we had some thunderstorms. After the storm, the temperature and the humidity dropped, but it is still hot here. The heat advisory has been extended tomorrow. While waiting for the end of the heat wave, I thought a video about how to survive the heat wave would be good. A lot of the vocabulary used in this video is the same used in the ESL article for this week, but I added some below as well.

Like usual, I recommend you review the vocabulary and expressions below before watching the video.  If there are any other words or expressions you have questions about, please leave a comment.  Then look at the questions and try to listen to the video without the transcript to answer the questions. Listen again while reading along, and check your answers.

Vocabulary/Expressions

  • retention= the ability to keep something
  • reflect = to move in one direction, hit a surface, and then quickly move in a different and usually opposite direction
  • to tend [to do something] = used to describe what often happens or what someone often does or is likely to do
  • plenty = a large number or amount of something
  • metabolic rate = how quickly you use calories (energy) from food
  • spritz = to spray (something) quickly with a small amount of liquid
  • drape = to cover (someone or something) with a cloth
  • nauseous = feeling like you are about to vomit
  • ventilated =  has air moving, or circulating, through the place
  • municipality = city
  • strenuous = requiring or showing great energy and effort
  • frequently = happens regularly or often, not rare
  • round up = to gather

Questions

  1. Why is it important to stay cool during a heat wave?
  2. What foods and drinks should we avoid (not have) when temperatures are high? Why not?
  3. Name four places you can go during a heat wave to cool off.
  4. During what hours should you stay inside? When should you do strenuous activities?

Video Clip

Video Transcription:

How to Survive a Heat Wave

When the temperatures approach dangerous levels, you need to know how to keep cool to avoid heat-related illnesses, and even death.

You will need shade, sunscreen, a hat, lightweight, light-colored clothing, fluids, appropriate food, cool water, air conditioning, a pool or cooling center, and ice cream.

People who are on fluid-restricted diets or have a problem with fluid retention should consult a physician before increasing their consumption of fluids.

Step 1: Stay out of the summer sun. Find shade, and if you have to be in the sun, make sure you’re wearing sunscreen and a hat. Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing to reflect heat and sunshine.

Step 2: Drink plenty of water, even if you’re not thirsty. Avoid alcohol, caffeine, and sugary drinks, as these tend to dehydrate you.

Step 3: Avoid proteins and other foods that require an increased metabolic rate for your body to process. Increased metabolic heat production also increases water loss.

Step 4: Take cool showers or baths. Spritz yourself with cool water from a spray bottle, drape your head and neck with towels soaked in cool water, and soak your feet in cool water baths. Avoid extreme temperature changes which may make you feel nauseous or dizzy.

Step 5: Use an air conditioner or stay in well-ventilated rooms with fans if you don’t have air conditioning.    Spend the hottest part of the day (11 AM to 4 PM) in air conditioned places such as movie theatres or shopping centers.

Step 6: Locate a pool or cooling center in your area if you live in, or near a larger city. Many municipalities use public libraries or other city buildings as cooling centers during heat waves.

Step 7: Avoid physical labor, exercise, or other strenuous activity during the hottest times of the day. If you have to perform strenuous activities, do them between 4 AM and 7 AM.

Step 8: Check on the elderly, children, and people with special needs frequently during a heat wave.

Now, go round up the neighborhood children, get some ice cream, and stay cool.

Did you know? During the summer of 1896, a heat wave that lasted for ten days killed almost 1,500 (fifteen hundred) people in New York.

Answers

  1. Why is it important to stay cool during a heat wave? To avoid heat-related illness (getting sick because of the heat) and death!
  2. What foods and drinks should we avoid (not have) when temperatures are high? Why not? Do not drink caffeine, alcohol, or sugary drinks because they will dehydrate you. Do not eat too much protein because your body has to work hard to process it.
  3. Name four places you can go during a heat wave to cool off. The pool, the public library, city buildings, shopping centers, and movie theatres were all mentioned.
  4. During what hours should you stay inside? When should you do strenuous activities? Avoid the outdoors between 11 AM and 4 PM. If you have to complete strenuous activity, try to do it between 4 AM and 7 AM (but that’s too early!).

*******************

Discussion Topic

Do you change your habits during heat waves? If yes, what do you do differently?

Onions and Garlic | ESL Listening Comprehension

listening comp cooking

Hello, folks. We are sticking with this week’s cooking theme. If you like to cook, you probably already know the basics. But if you are new to cooking, you can use these videos to improve your cooking skills and your English! Today, I have two short instructional videos for you about how to properly chop and onion and how to peel garlic. Since the parts of the onion and garlic are important in the videos, I thought I would include a quick drawing for you.

onions.garlic

Like usual, I recommend you review the vocabulary and expressions below before watching the video.  I combined the vocabulary section for both of the videos. If there are any other words or expressions you have questions about, please leave a comment.  Then look at the questions and try to listen to the video without the transcript to answer the questions. Listen again while reading along, and check your answers.

Vocabulary/Expressions

  • a stew = a dish of vegetables and usually meat cooked in hot liquid for a long time
  • to trim = to cut a small piece off something else
  • a stem = the main long and thin part of a plant that rises above the soil and supports the leaves and flowers
  • a root  = the part of a plant that grows underground, gets water from the ground, and holds the plant in place
  • to peel = to remove or take off the skin from (a fruit, vegetable, etc.)
  • a [cutting] board = a wooden or plastic board on which foods (such as meats and vegetables) are cut
  • diced = to cut (food) into small cube or squares
  • minced = to cut (food) into very small pieces
  • a clove [of garlic] =  one individual piece of garlic (several cloves make one head of garlic)
  • to discard = to remove or throw (something) away because it is useless or unwanted

Questions for Video 1

  1. What are onions used for, or good for?
  2. What kind of knife should you use to chop an onion?
  3. How can you change/adapt the technique to dice or mince your onions?
  4. Why do you want to use this technique to chop your onions?

Video 1 Clip

Video 1 Transcription:

Onions can lend a sweet, distinct undertone to many soups, sauces, and stews.  But cutting them can be frustrating when the technique is unfamiliar.

Using a sharp chef’s knife, trim off the stem end of the onion, and cut it in half through the root end. Peel back the skin on both halves, leaving the root end attached. Next, make horizontal cuts parallel to the board, cutting to, but not through the root. Then, make lengthwise vertical cuts, almost but not quite through the root. Finally, cut across the width of the onion to chop into small pieces. The same technique is used to achieve finely diced and minced onion, just making more cuts in each direction through each step.

No tears when you use a sharp knife with this method!

Video 1 Answers

  1. What are onions used for, or good for? They add a sweet and distinct flavor to many dishes such as stews, soups, and sauces.
  2. What kind of knife should you use to chop an onion? You should use a sharp, chef’s knife.
  3. How can you change/adapt the technique to dice or mince your onions? Make more cuts in each direction for each step.
  4. Why do you want to use this technique to chop your onions? Your onions will not make you cry as much as usual!

Questions for Video 2

  1. What two words does she use to describe the part of the hand that she uses?
  2. What does the speaker tell you to be careful about?

Video 2 Clip

Video 2 Transcription:

To peel apart the cloves of garlic, all you’re going to do is take the palm of your hand and we’re going to apply a little pressure and mash it down and that will make them come apart really easily.

Now we can discard the extra paper, get that out of the way. And now we’re going to peel this clove of garlic. And the way to do it is just to lay it on your cutting board and we’re going to take our knife and with the heel of our hand, hit the knife.

However, you do want to be very careful. You want to make sure that you have a good hit on it, and you want to make sure that your knife isn’t going to roll and possibly cut you. So just be aware of that.

Take this, give it a nice little hit. And the skin just comes away really easily.

And that is how we peel a clove of garlic.

Video 2 Answers

  1. What two words does she use to describe the part of the hand that she uses? She uses the palm of her hand and the “heel” of her hand. (The heel of your hand is the bottom part of your palm).
  2. What does the speaker tell you to be careful about? Make sure you hit the clove well, so that you do not cut yourself.

*******************

Discussion Topic

Do you like onions and garlic? Do you already use these techniques when cooking?

Moving Company Commercial | ESL Listening Comprehension

esl listening comprehension

Good morning! Today’s listening activity is a short commercial for a moving company located in Boston. The woman featured in the video speaks quickly, but clearly, and the commercial provides a lot of visual aids. The visual aids will help out a lot with today’s questions.

Like usual, I recommend you review the vocabulary and expressions below before watching the video. Some of the vocabulary used in the video can also be found at this week’s earlier reading post. Then look at the questions and try to listen to the video without the transcript to answer the questions. Listen again while reading along, and check your answers.

Vocabulary/Expressions

  • to face it (face something) = often used with “let’s” to mean we need to be realistic or we need to accept a situation
  • to relocate = to move to a new place
  • dare we say = an expression that means the next statement may be controversial or bold
  • storage  = space where you put things when they are not being used
  • to customize = to change (something) in order to fit the needs or requirements of a person, business, etc.
  • reliable = able to be trusted to do or provide what is needed : able to be relied on
  • take someone’s word for it = to believe someone without having evidence
  • peace of mind = to have no stress, to be reassured, to be calm
  • to be licensed =  having official permission to have or do something : having a license
  • to be bonded = originally a military expression, but is now used to mean gain support for your cause, or spread enthusiasm for your cause/brand, etc.

Questions

  1. Does Brookline Moving Company think moving is stressful?
  2. What types of services does the company provide/offer?
  3. Is this company reliable? How can we verify, or check, this?
  4. What other information does the commercial tell us that reassures the customer?

Video Clip

Transcription:

Let’s face it. Nobody likes to move. Moving can be a stressful experience if you let it. When it’s time to relocate your home or office, let Brookline Moving Company remove all that stress, and dare we say, even make it enjoyable. BMC can assist you with every facet of your relocation, whether it be local, long-distance, or international.

We do it all: packing, moving, storage, and unpacking. We will customize our services to fit your budgetary needs and have been providing nothing but service since 1920.

Brookline Moving Company is a reliable and highly-rated moving company. But don’t take our word for it. Just read our reviews online. We are featured on sites, such as Better Business Bureau, Yahoo, Google, Yelp, Angie’s List, and Service Magic, just to name a few.

For additional peace of mind, know that Brookline Moving Company is licensed, bonded, and insured. To make your relocation as stress-free as possible, contact Brookline Moving Company, where we offer nothing but service.

Answers

  1. Does Brookline Moving Company think moving is stressful? They acknowledge that it can be stressful, but using BMC takes the stress out of the process.
  2. What types of services does the company provide/offer? BMC offers packing, moving, storage, and unpacking for local, long-distance, or international moves.
  3. Is this company reliable? How can we verify, or check, this? The commercial says the company is reliable and that we can check by looking at online reviews from other customers at the websites mentioned (Google, Yahoo, Better Business Bureau, Angie’s List, Service Magic, and Yelp).
  4. What other information does the commercial tell us that reassures the customer? BMC tells us that the company is licensed, bonded, and insured so that we have peace of mind.

*******************

Discussion Topic

Have you ever hired a moving company? Did it make your moving experience more or less stressful?

Taking Woodstock | ESL Listening Comprehension

Hello, again. We have another listening challenge for the week. Today’s video is a movie trailer for Taking Woodstock. H have not seen the movie, so I do not know if it is good, but it tells the story of the most famous music festival in the United States, so I thought it fit in with this week’s music festival theme.

The first Woodstock Music Festival took place in 1969 in the state of New York. A young man named Elliot Tiber helped to organize the event. He is the main character in the movie. The trailer contains many actors, who have typical United States accents. The often say gonna or wanna for going to or want to. This is something you should be able to understand when listening to others, but do not worry about trying to speak with gonna or wanna yourself.

Review the vocabulary and expressions below to prepare. Then look at the questions and try to listen to the video without the transcript to answer the questions. Listen again while reading along, and check your answers.

Vocabulary/Expressions

  • be [someone’s] lifeblood = to be something that is necessary to live, earn a living
  • to be in a rear = to be behind, to owe money
  • mortgage = a monthly bill to pay back debt on a house/property
  • the locals  = people who are from the town/local area
  • bummer = an expression of disappointment/that’s too bad
  • a permit = an official document that allows you to do something
  • to tidy up = to clean/to clean up
  • to buy out [for a season] = to book, or reserve, all the space available for the whole tourist season
  • to be backed up [a road] =  there is a traffic jam/cars cannot move because there are too many people on the road
  • Rally your troops = originally a military expression, but is now used to mean gain support for your cause, or spread enthusiasm for your cause/brand, etc.
  • a battalion = a group of military soldiers; usually 300 or more soldiers

Questions

  1. What do Elliot’s parents do for a living/for work?
  2. Why do you think Elliot wants to host a music festival?
  3. Whose land will the festival take place on?
  4. Did Elliot’s parents find a way to keep their business open?
  5. Did the festival organizers expect a crowd that big?
  6. What sort of problems did the festival organizers have?

Video Clip

Transcription:

  • Elliot: The El Monaco Resort is my parents’ lifeblood.
  • Banker: Oh, it’s a resort now?
  • Elliot: With the addition of a swimming pool, we should drive heavy tourist traffic right to our door.
  • Elliot: Dad, that’s bleach for the laundry!
  • Father: It kills the germs. What’s the difference?
  • Banker: I’m sorry, you’re in a rears on your mortgage.
  • Elliot: Just give us a couple months, please. We’ll get the money.
  • Man: Look at this, some hippie thing’s going to get canceled unless they find a new place for the concert.
  • Elliot: Wow, Janis Joplin…
  • Devon: Grateful Dead, The Who…
  • Elliot: Well, the locals killed it.
  • Devon: Bummer, man.
  • Elliot: Can you connect me with someone called Woodstock Ventures?
  • Michael: Hey, man.
  • Michael: You have a permit, right?
  • Elliot: Yeah.
  • Michael: Very cool.
  • Farmer: You say you want to use these fields here?
  • That’s why we’re here.
  • Farmer: You’re going to have to tidy up after yourselves.
  • Michael: Of course.
  • Michael: We’re going to need a place for people can crash.
  • Michael: Why don’t we just buy the El Monaco out for the season? We’d like to play cash, in advance.
  • Father: Your mother says we can triple our money.
  • Mother: Three times the ropes.
  • Elliot: Word is getting out that maybe we’ll have a few more guest than we originally thought.
  • Television Reporter: The New York State freeway is backed up all the way to the George Washington Bridge that is basically a parking lot. Police are planning the first ever emergency closing of the entire freeway.
  • Elliot: What?
  • Man: You know what those hippies are going to do to our town?
  • Man: Shut this thing down.
  • Men: With this rain, things might get a little electrical. We don’t want to fry too much of the audience.
  • Elliot: What should I do?
  • Billy: Rally your troops.
  • Elliot: Do I have troops?
  • Billy: You have your mom, don’t you? She’s a battalion!
  • Man [dressed as woman]: You need help.
  • Elliot: What kind of help?
  • Elliot: My God.
  • Elliot: It’s starting.
  • Man [dressed as woman]: Can you see this thing? See what the center of the universe looks like.
  • Billy: I love this hill!
  • Elliot: It’s beautiful. It’s fate. Right there, at the top of that hill.
  • Elliot: You gave them the brownies?

Answers

  1. What do Elliot’s parents do for a living/for work? They own and manage the El Monaco Motel.
  2. Why do you think Elliot wants to host a music festival? To bring tourists to the city and keep his parents’ hotel open.
  3. Whose land will the festival take place on? The organizers asked a local farmer to use his land.
  4. Did Elliot’s parents find a way to keep their business open? Yes, the El Monaco Motel was booked/reserved for the entire season.
  5. Did the festival organizers expect a crowd that big? No, more people came than they thought would. There were traffic jams because so many people came.
  6. What sort of problems did the festival organizers have? The local people wanted to stop the event and “shut it down.” There were also problems with too many people coming.

*******************

Discussion Topic

Have you heard of Woodstock before? Do you think it would be fun to attend an event like this? Would it be fun to organize an event like this?

Music Festival Fans | ESL Listening Comprehension

Hello, everyone! Today, I have a real challenge for you today! But it is a challenge with humor 😀

Jimmy Kimmel, a TV host in the United States, sends a woman to a well-known music festival in California, called Coachella. Because music fans like to say they know new bands before other people, the host interviews music fans about fake bands, to see if the fans will pretend that they know them.

The speakers use common teenage/young adult ways of speaking, including using the words just, like, and you know very often. Like is often a “filler word,” with no real meaning. The overuse of these words are bad speaking habits, so I encourage ESL learners to avoid these habits as much as possible. However, it is important to be able to understand people when they speak this way. There are also two times when curse/swear words are covered on the audio track.

There may be some new vocabulary, so, as usual,  I have included a list before the video. Try watching the video and answering the questions without reading the script first, and then listen again while reading if needed. You may need to listen to this video a couple times to be able to collect your answers to all of the questions.

Vocabulary/Expressions

  • to wrap up = to finish, to end
  • up-and-coming = new, emerging, becoming more popular
  • to conduct [an experiment] = to do an experiment, to try something
  • venue  = the place where an event happens, takes place
  • to make up = to create
  • obscure = not well-known : not known to most people
  • to play “live” = to play or give a concert in person
  • a highlight =  something (such as an event or a detail) that is very interesting, exciting, or important : the best part of something
  • polka = a lively dance and type of music for couples that is popular with older generations in the Midwest United States
  • innovative = has new ideas, creative
  • straight out of [somewhere] = to come from a specific place
  • to give off = to emit, to let out, to send

Questions

  1. Who created the fake band names?
  2. What are the names of the fake bands? [Hint: there are seven and one is listed in the following questions.]
  3. How does the host describe “Shorty Jizzle and the Plumbercracks?”
  4. Does anyone admit, or say, that they have not heard of the band?
  5. What does the host say Coachella means in an American Indian language?

Video Clip

Transcription:

One more thing, the Coachella Valley Music and Arts festival wrapped up yesterday. It’s a huge concert. It goes over two weekends. It’s out in the middle of the California desert. More than sixty bands played at Coachella this year. Some of them big bands, some of them not-so-big, some up-and-coming bands. Music fans in general love knowing about bands that no one else has ever heard of. So, we decided to conduct an experiment. We sent a camera crew to Coachella and we asked people walking into the venue what they thought of a bunch of bands whose names we made up. Okay, these bands are so obscure that they do not exist. Except for one name you will hear here, we made all of them up, but that didn’t stop people from saying they knew them in tonight’s special Coachella edition of Lie Witness News.

  • Host: One of my favorite bands this year is “Dr. Schlomo and the GI Clinic.”
  • Girl 1: Yeah.
  • Host: Yeah. They’re amazing.
  • Girl 1: Yeah, They’re always amazing.
  • Host: He’s really good on the flexic.
  • Girl 2: Yeah, I’m really excited to see them live. I think that’s going to one of the bands that’s gonna be really great live.
  • Girl 1: Me too, it’s going to be a highlight.
  • Host: Did you see them when they played at Lollapalooza?
  • Girl 1: No.
  • Girl 2: No, I didn’t.
  • Host: Aren’t you so mad?
  • Girl 1: I know, I’m so mad.
  •  Host: Have you heard of “Shorty Jizzle and the Plumbercracks?”
  • Guy: Yep.
  • Host: What do you like about them? Like, how raw they are?
  • Guy: Yeah, they’re, I mean, they’re  really unique, for sure.
  • Host: They feel a little bit like a combination between, like, Bob Dylan and, like, a polka band.
  • Guy: Yeah, um.
  • Host: Are you guys as excited as I am about “The Obesity Epidemic?”
  • I just like their whole style. Like their whole genre, just great. They’re kind of, like, they’re like, very innovative and they’re new.
  • Host: They’re some smaller bands that are playing. “Two Door Cinema Club.” They’re good.
  • Guy: Yeah, I’m looking forward to them.
  • Host: Do you like their album DJ Cornmeal?
  • Guy: Yeah, actually, I, um,  had a radio show on a community radio show up in Canada and I used to spin them all the time.
  • Host: Oh, wow, sounds like a great show.
  • Host: One of my favorite bands this year is called “Get the Fuck Out of My Pool.”
  • Girl: Yeah, actually, that, I’ve heard from my friends, I don’t know any of their music, but I’ve heard from all of my friends that it’s not something to miss. So I’m not gonna miss it.
  • Host: One of my favorite things today, straight out of Williamsburg, the “Chelsea Clintons.”
  • Girl: Oh, yeah, I have heard of them actually. No, yeah, I don’t know if I’m gonna see them or not. But I do know of their music.
  • Host: What did you hear about them?
  • Girl: Its, they’re just fun.
  • Host: What’s fun about the “Chelsea Clintons?”
  • Girl: I think they just give off good energy. Like, you know, and you can just tell that they’re doing it from a good place. And it’s, like, you can just feel energy, I feel. And there’s, like, very few acts that, like, give you that feeling.
  • Host: Did you know that Coachella is actually the American Indian word for dumb white guy?
  • Guy: Really?
  • Girl 1: It’s Fucking Coachella Twenty-Thirteen! Woo!
  • Girl 2: We love Coachella.
  •  Host: Are you guys excited for “Regis and the Philbin?”
  • Girl 2: Very excited!

Answers

  1. Who created the fake band names? The Jimmy Kimmel show made up/created all of the fake band names, except for one.
  2. What are the names of the fake bands? Dr. Schlomo and the GI Clinic, Shorty Jizzle and the Plumbercracks, Obesity Epidemic, Two Door Cinema Club, Get the Fuck Out of My Pool, the Chelsea Clintons, and Regis and the Philbin.
  3. How does the host describe “Shorty Jizzle and the Plumbercracks?” She describes them as a combination between Bob Dylan and a polka band. That would be a strange combination!
  4. Does anyone admit, or say, that they have not heard of the band? No, all the people pretended to have some knowledge of the bands.
  5. What does the host say Coachella means in an American Indian language? Dumb white guy.

*******************

Discussion Topic

Do you ever feel pressure to say that you know a band or singer that people are talking about? Do you think you would have said that you didn’t know the bands?

A Garden Tour | ESL Listening Comprehension

garden tour esl comp

Hello again, I hope everyone is doing well.

For today’s listening exercise, we are traveling to the city of Asheville, North Carolina, in the United States, for a garden tour. Asheville is a beautiful, small city that is close to the mountains. Today’s video is from an inn where guests can stay. In the video, the owners of the property talk about the gardens they have. The accents of the cute couple are typical United States accents.

There may be some new vocabulary, so, as usual,  I have included a list before the video. Try watching the video and answering the questions without reading the script first, and then listen again while reading if needed.

Vocabulary/Expressions

  • spectacular = causing wonder and admiration : very impressive
  • native = produced, living, or existing naturally in a particular region
  • species = a type of plant or animal
  • perenniel  = living for several years or for many years : having a life cycle that is more than two years long
  • to prompt [someone to do something] = to cause (someone) to do something
  • to expand = to make bigger, to make larger
  • to get something out [of something else] = to receive happiness or a benefit from an activity or item
  • to be a testament =  to be proof or evidence that something exists or is true

Questions

  1. In what year was the property built?
  2. Did the woman in the video start the garden herself?
  3. What did she gain through the Master Gardeners program?
  4. What is her favorite part of the garden? Why is it her favorite?
  5. What does the man think it means that his wife picks her own herbs from the garden?

Video Clip

Transcription:

Woman: I’m standing in the gardens right now, and that’s one of my very favorite parts of taking care of the property, and I hope you’ll enjoy as well.  Just walking around the gardens here in the evening or early morning with a cup of coffee is spectacular.

The property was built in 1894 and it’s historic, and what that means is, for us, is that a lot of great people have added to these gardens over the years, so we have a wide variety.

Um, I’ve continued to add to the gardens, in both native species and perennials. And it actually prompted me to get my Master Gardner certification this year. I’ve met wonderful people, resources in Asheville through that gardening program, and I’m excited about the future with the garden.

One of my very favorite parts of all of our gardens is my herb garden. I’ve expanded it in the last couple of years. And I’m getting so much enjoyment out of it. Um, I love to cook. That means I love to cook for our guests. And I’m in the garden, a big part of my cooking.

Man: I love seeing her out there every morning. She’s cutting the herbs, and with great joy. And bringing them in and putting them in each of the different dishes that we do. And it really is kind of a great testament to what a spectacular cook she is. And also just how much care she puts into the meals that she prepares for our guests.

Woman: Thanks, honey!

Answers

    1. In what year was the property built? The property was built in 1894. That’s old!
    2. Did the woman in the video start the garden herself? No, many people before her have added to the gardens.
    3. What did she gain through the Master Gardeners program? She met a lot of people and learned about many gardening resources. She also gained for enthusiasm, because she is excited about the future of the gardens.
    4. What is her favorite part of the garden? Why is it her favorite? Her favorite part of the gardens is the herb garden, because she likes using the herbs in her cooking.
    5. What does the man think it means that his wife picks her own herbs from the garden? He thinks it shows that she is a good cook and that she cares a lot about the meals she prepares.

*******************

Did you notice she called her husband “honey”? This is a very typical nickname couple use for one another. Cute!

I have never stayed at this inn, but have been to Asheville many times. It is one of my favorite cities in the United States, and I recommend going there if you ever have the opportunity. Let’s plan our trip to Asheville soon!

Have a great day!

Gardening Video | ESL Listening Comprehension

esl listening comp gardening

Good morning. Yesterday was a dreary, rainy day in Montreal. I am hoping that we have some sun today for my plants!

For today’s listening exercise, I found and transcribed a short video about pruning, or cutting, basil plants. There is some gardening-specific vocabulary, so I have included a list before the video. Again, like last week’s video, the speaker uses the word gonna, which is a spoken way of saying going to, and wanna for want to. Try watching the video and answering the questions without reading the script first, and then listen again while reading if needed.

Vocabulary/Expressions

  • to prune = to cut off some of the branches of (a tree, bush, or plant) so that it will grow better or look better
  • to flower [verb] = to produce flowers or blossoms
  • to consume = to use, to eat or drink
  • tend  = used to describe a quality that someone or something often has or is likely to have
  • bitter = having a strong and often unpleasant flavor that is the opposite of sweet; coffee and beer are examples of bitter flavors
  • base = bottom
  • to pinch = to remove (part of a plant) by squeezing with your thumb and finger
  • stem = the main long and thin part of a plant that rises above the soil and supports the leaves and flowers
  • shears = a large, heavy pair of scissors, often used for gardening

Questions

  1. Do most people want to prune their basil plants?
  2. Why is it easier for a plant to grow leaves if there are no flowers?
  3. Why does the man use scissors to prune the plant? Why didn’t he pinch the flowers off?

Video Clip

Transcription:

Several months into the growing season, you’ll notice that your basil plant starts to flower. Now most people would agree that they want to prune the flowers from the plant. And there are two reasons for this.

First, the energy that’s consumed by the plant to flower is taking away from the process of growing new leaves. So, if you enjoy using the leaves for things such as cooking, you’re going to want to keep producing those leaves by cutting the flowers off. Secondly, the leaves tend to turn bitter once the plant starts flowering.

Let’s prune the flowers from this plant.

First, what we want to do is find the base of the flower. Then, here, it looks like these leaves are pretty close to the base of this flower, so what I’m going to do, is I’m going to pinch this off the stem right here, just above this pair of leaves below the flower. Since this stem is pretty thick, I’m going to use a pair of scissors, or shears.

It’s as simple as that.

For more information, visit us at growing-basil.org.

Thanks for watching.

Answers

  1. Do most people want to prune their basil plants? Yes, most people agree that they want to prune their basil plants.
  2. Why is it easier for a plant to grow leaves if there are no flowers? The flower consumes, or uses, energy that would otherwise be used for for growing leaves.
  3. Why does the man use scissors to prune the plant? Why didn’t he pinch the flowers off? The stem is too thick to pinch off easily.

*******************

Have a great day! See you tomorrow 😀