Thursday, April 30, 2009

United States and Mexico Battle Swine Flu

VOANews: United States and Mexico Battle Swine Flu: What you should do to avoid infection
This is the VOA Special English Health Report. Swine flu is a respiratory sickness caused by an influenza virus that mainly infects pigs. However, sometimes the virus can sicken humans. That is what has happened in Mexico in the last few weeks. Transcript of radio broadcast: 28 April 2009


Answers: I have to prioritze

A. Dissimilar Meaning

  1. add
  2. charge
  3. student
  4. start
  5. job bank
  6. practice
  7. library
  8. interview

B. Give 2 suggestions

  1. Boris should get a tutor to help him with his math. He should also stop worrying and start studying.
  2. Noriko should stop eating out and start cooking at home. The money that she saves from eating out can be used to buy a new car.
  3. Mohamed should take a computer class. He should also buy a computer and use it at home.
  4. Sara should go back to school once a week at night or on Saturday. She can also borrow accounting books from the library.

C. Noun <--> Verb

  1. application <--> apply
  2. priority <--> prioritize
  3. reduction <--> reduce
  4. education <--> educate
  5. payment <--> pay

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

DiscoveryChannel: Urban Farming Grows Up

DiscoveryChannel: Urban Farming Grows Up Discovery's Matt Danzico investigates vertical farming, an agricultural concept aimed at growing food and raising animals in skyscrapers in city centers.


  1. George really had a long face because he had lost his wallet.
  2. Out neighbors are nosey.
  3. She loves cakes. She has such a sweet tooth.
  4. They never see eye to eye.
  5. That person has a big mouth.
  6. Come on! Shake a leg!
  7. Lisa is head over heels in love with Steve.
  8. Driving in this terrible traffic is a pain in my neck.
  9. Don't believe her. She's pulling your leg.
  10. I learned that poem by heart.
  11. That excellent stereo system must cost an arm and a leg.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Parsley: Not Just Another Pretty Green

VOANews: Parsley: Not Just Another Pretty Green
On AGRICULTURE REPORT: Advice for growing parsley. And don't think there are only two kinds. (Heard of Hamburg parsley?) 24 March 2008


  1. No, they don't see eye to eye because they are fighting.
  2. No, Alicia doesn't have a big mouth because she never says a word.
  3. Yes, it is possible that Christine is nosey because keeps coming over to our
    house for no reason.
  4. No, Sid doesn't have a sweet tooth because he lies anything salty.
  5. Yes, Joseph is head over heels in love with Maggie because she is all he
    thinks about.
  6. Yes, parking is a pain in the neck at school because there are no
  7. No, the book didn't cost an arm and a leg because it was eighty percent off
    the original price.
  8. Yes, Yoko has a long face because she didn't get the job.
  9. Yes, Walter was pulling our leg because it wasn't his birthday.
  10. Yes, I learned how to count from one to ten in French, Italian, and
  11. Yes, Derek shook a leg, because he ate quickly so he could get to the movie
    on time.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Short Story: The Lady or the Tiger?

VOANews: Short Story: ‘The Lady, or the Tiger?’ Written by Frank R. Stockton.

Which came out of the open door – the lady, or the tiger?


  1. to have a sweet tooth
  2. nosey
  3. a big mouth
  4. to see eye to eye
  5. a long face
  6. by heart
  7. to shake a leg
  8. to cost an arm and a leg
  9. head over heels in love
  10. to pull someone's leg
  11. a pain in the neck

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Students Learn About Sustainable Agriculture

VOANews: Students Learn About Sustainable Agriculture
On AGRICULTURE REPORT: A few colleges in the United States provide hands-on experience in traditional farming.


  1. Lien wrote checks for the household bills twice a month.
  2. She wrote the date, number and words for the amount of payment. She
    filled in the Pay to the order of line on each check.
  3. She wrote the account number on the Memo line.
  4. After she signed the check, she put it in an envelope.
  5. Lien put a stamp on each envelope.
  6. Cham thought that this way of paying bills was very old-fashioned.
  7. Cham promised to go on the Internet and learn how to pay bills online.
  8. Cham learned about his favorite basketball team, building a bookcase, and
    taking care of a tree in the front yard.
  9. After two weeks, Cham learned how to pay bills online.
  10. He discovered that you could go directly to each company's web site.
  11. You needed a log-in ID, a password, and your account number.
  12. You paid through check or credit card online.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Friday, April 24, 2009

National Arbor Day

VOANews: AMERICAN MOSAIC - Arbor Day--2004-04-30
Arbor Day in the United States is a day for planting trees.

National Arbor Day is the last Friday in April, but many states observe Arbor Day on different dates according to their best tree-planting times. Check the map or list below to find out when your state or territory observes Arbor Day.
home trees arbor day members programs
media arbor day farm shop careers take action


  1. secondhand
  2. frequently
  3. occasionally
  4. emergency
  5. regularly
  6. nest egg

Thursday, April 23, 2009

California State Tree: The Redwood

  1. to work
  2. to take
  3. working
  4. to go
  5. working
  6. to work
  7. working
  8. to be
  9. having
  10. to give (up)
  11. staying
  12. to be

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Earth Day

ESL Holiday lessons: Earth Day

Earth Day is an annual event that aims to inspire awareness of and appreciation for our environment.

  1. shopping
  2. to buy
  3. to look
  4. dancing
  5. dancing
  6. to dance
  7. to learn
  8. smoking
  9. jogging
  10. swimming
  11. being
  12. fishing
  13. camping
  14. dislikes fishing and camping (???)
  15. doesn't like to fish or camp
  16. to go

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Central Park in New York City

One of the most famous parks in America: Central Park in New York City (NYC). See summer in New York. See monuments, bridges, ponds, lakes, a wedding, and more. More videos at EL Civics on YouTube.


  1. to retire
  2. to have
  3. retiring
  4. working do
  5. being
  6. working
  7. swimming and gardening
  8. doing
  9. take
  10. to travel

Monday, April 20, 2009

Cherry Blossoms in Full Bloom in Washington, DC

VOAVideo: Cherry Blossoms in Full Bloom in Washington, DC

It is that time of year again in the U.S. capital, when young, old, rich and poor gather at the city's Tidal Basin to enjoy the blooming cherry blossom trees. Almost 100 years ago, the mayor of Tokyo gave the city three thousand cherry trees. And ever since then, each spring, in good times and bad, their beauty have soothed the soul of people who travel from across the country and the world to enjoy their fleeting beauty. VOA sent photographer Mike Kornely and his camera to the Tidal Basin and here is his video postcard.


  1. to be
  2. playing
  3. practicing
  4. doing
  5. practicing
  6. to give (up)
  7. getting
  8. to have
  9. to have
  10. staying
  11. being
  12. to own
  13. to buy
  14. driving
  15. seeing
  16. working
  17. to support
  18. to be

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Spring Break Party

ESL 3 and ESL 6 kicked-off Spring Break early with a potluck. First we studied, then we ATE! You can download the pictures here.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

San Jose Rose Gardens

This week on SCIENCE IN THE NEWS: One of the most beautiful places to see in Washington is also a research and education center about the science of plant life 03 April 2006

San Jose Municipal Rose Garden
Rolling green lawns and colorful showy blooms highlight the San José Municipal Rose Garden. In fact, hardly a day passes when some species is not in full bloom, with more than 3,500 plantings and 189 varieties featured.

San Jose Heritage Rose Garden Home
The San Jose Heritage Rose Garden is dedicated to the study and appreciation of old and endangered roses.

Friday, April 17, 2009

San Jose Community Gardens

VOANews: Singer Aims to Grow Interest in Local Farming
On AGRICULTURE REPORT: Money from Adrienne Young's new CD "Room to Grow" will help support community gardens.
San Jose Community Gardens

San José has eighteen community gardens located throughout the city. These year-round gardens are managed by volunteer staff and offer an opportunity for San José residents to have their own garden plot. Plots range from 10'x10' to 20'x30' depending on the garden, and are assigned on a first come, first served basis. All gardens have an annual water fee.

Community gardeners grow everything organically, from vegetables and herbs to flowers and fruit.

Please note, there is an application process and many times a waiting list for some of our gardens.

For more information, please call (408) 793-4165 or e-mail us.

Also check out

Thursday, April 16, 2009

San Jose Parks

City of San José Directory of Parks
For info about park reservations, permits & availability, call 408-277-2757. Example:

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Ed Levin County Park

Ed Levin County Park
Go up Calaveras Rd towards the hills--you will find Ed Levin Park. Owned and operated by the City of Milpitas, this dog park is one of the most popular features in Ed Levin County Park. Ed Levin Park is also a great place to go bird-watching, hang-gliding, and para-sailing.

Here are some great pictures of Ed Levin Park.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Milpitas Parks

These 14 feet tall sculptures are located
at the entrance of Murphy Park on Yellowstone.
The weather vane tops depict
the history and natural resources of Milpitas.

Milpitas Parks

If you like the outdoors, Milpitas is the place for you. The City of Milpitas has over 25 park locations with various amenities for your enjoyment – softball fields, tennis courts, basketball courts, handball courts, bocce ball courts, volleyball standards, horseshoe units, par courses, and barbecuing. Click here for park map, maintenance services, or park rental agreements...

Monday, April 13, 2009

International Plant Appreciation Day

ESL Holiday Lessons: Plant Appreciation Day
April 13 is Plant Appreciation Day (PAD). This is when you appreciate just how important plants are to us.

DOWNLOADS: Word Doc PDF MP3 Listening Online Exercise

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter Lilies!

Easter Lilies

"Easter Lilies are used to decorate churches and homes. The large, pure white blossoms remind Christians of the pure new life that comes to them through the Resurrection of Jesus."--Annie's Easter Symbols and Their Meanings Page

ESL Holidays: Easter Sunday
Easter Sunday commemorates the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Saturday, April 11, 2009


Some growers of American ginseng say it takes five to ten years to produce the best roots.

ESL Discussions: Alternative Medicine
Do you think we can find all the medicines we need from the natural world, instead of making drugs?

Thursday, April 9, 2009

VOANews: Yosemite: One of the Most Famous National Parks in the US

VOANews: Yosemite: One of the Most Famous National Parks in the US
On EXPLORATIONS: Yosemite National Park is a place of extremes. It has high mountains. And it has valleys formed by ancient ice that cut deep into the Earth millions of years ago.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Yosemite Wildflowers!

California's State Flower: The Golden Poppy
Photo: Teacher Hongyan Zheng

Click the here to see Teacher Hongyan Zheng's slide show of the Yosemite Wildflowers.

Here are more California Wildflowers with their names.

CA Academy of Science California Wildflowers - Home Page
Look-up photos and descriptions of California wildflowers by color, common name, Latin name or family.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Spring Garden 7: Bush Beans

Working Magic in the Garden With Beans
Specialists at the University of Illinois Extension say bush beans need the least work. The plants do not need supports to stand...Unlike bush beans, pole beans need supports to climb.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Spring Garden 5: Potatoes

True or false? Potatoes are root vegetables. False. Potatoes are underground stems called tubers.

ESL Discussions: Potatoes Do you like potatoes?

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Spring Garden 4: Cabbage

VOANews: Putting Your Head to Growing Cabbage
Think about it if you live where the temperature is cool and the soil is moist and fertile.

ESL Discussions: Gardening Do you like gardening?

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Spring Garden 1: The White House Vegtable Garden

Earlier this month, Michelle Obama and twenty-three schoolchildren helped prepare the ground for an organic vegetable garden on the South Lawn of the White House. The organic garden will show the value of good food and nutrition. Transcript of radio broadcast: 30 March 2009