A2 · B1 · culture · Listening

Songs about Holidays

It’s almost time for holidays. Yes, school breaks up and students can relax their neurons a bit. While for others, summer means a lot of work hours and, er… tons and tons of  stress. Because if you live by the Mediterranean Sea, you must already know how crowded with tourist we can get and of course, that means that while some people can enjoy a lovely fortnight lolling on the sandy beaches getting a really nice tan and sipping up cool drinks, others fret about how they are going to cope with long shifts, look after their kids and survive until the tourist season ends. But don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining. It’s just one of those things…

Here are some songs about holidays. They were hits when they were released even though you will probably not know them and they may seem a little bit peculiar to you now in the 21st century (or at least to me, when I saw that huge red double-decker driving around France eh!!!???).

Anyway, I think the songs have pretty catchy tunes and words to them, and that you’ll enjoy at least one of them. Good practice and good holidays!

First one coming up for beginners. Scorpions 1979 hit ‘Holiday’.

scorpions

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Second coming up for A2 and low B1. Wow! A real golden oldie from 1963. Cliff Richard and the Shadows called this one, Summer holidays and it was one of the soundtracks for a film with the same name. Children frequently sing this song at schools when they are going to break up for the summer holidays and it is also ‘one of those songs you pest your parents or friends with when driving long distances and you want to kill boredom (yeah, sort of like the Spanish song ‘En el auto de papá ‘). If after the video you find out why the driver is served sandwiches twice, you might want to share that bit of information, because I just can’t work it out.

By the way, according to laws concerning cyclist’s safety, Cliff Richard  would have got a hefty fine had he been driving like that nowadays.

Cliff_Richard

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Number 3… Madonna’s ‘Holiday’ released in 1983. You can get up and dance if you feel like it ( or not if you don’t, its up to you) 😉

Madonna

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Listening · B1

Owner’s dog looks at him while he falls asleep

adopt_me

Do you like animals? Do you consider yourself an animal lover?

I found this video really heartbreaking, but I also give high value to the positive note knowing that there are many people that sympathise with animal’s feelings  viewing them a real members of a family and not only as a form of amusement, that can easily be discarded in times of illness or impossibility to look after. In Spain we have a real problem concerned with animal abandonment and you’d be completely horrified to see how full animal shelters are of pets that were once loved and cared for. So when I saw this fantastic video, I thought it would be a nice listening activity for my Intermediate students but I also thought that it would be my tiny contribution towards making people realise that because our ‘hairy friends’ love and respect us, the least we can do, is to provide them with care and love, even in moments of distress because, after all, they had no voice in their choice of pet owners.

 

B1 · culture · Grammar activity · Listening

British culture Pancake Day

pancake

What is Pancake Day? Well, you may not be familiar with this typical British celebration but the matter of fact is that this day, some people (me too, if I get a break I mean) stuff to the point of bursting themselves with pancakes.(ha, ha, ha!!!)

Every year this day is usually celebrated about six weeks before Easter, so it is usually between February and March. This year Pancake Day is going to be on Tuesday, February 28, 2017 (in 17 days) which is a real pity because I would have liked to set up something special with my students for this day. Anyway, what’s the origin of this celebration?

Here are two  activities that you can do as you learn what Pancake Day is all about.  The first one is a vocabulary/grammar activity and the second, is a listening activity. I hope they don’t make you hungry!!!  😉

Have a look  at this video from Youtube .

Click to vocabulary activity

Click to listening activity