Thursday, August 30, 2018

Vlog: Classic Books which are Fun (and Painless) to Read (Part 1)



Classic Books which are Fun (and Painless) to Read (Part 2)



This is essentially just the video version of this list I published back in 2013: Classic Books Which Are Actually Fun to Read

For links to all the books referenced, see below.  (This includes not only the books on the list, but links to all the books I referenced in the video.)

Kim by Rudyard Kipling
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2010/04/kim-by-rudyard-kipling.html

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2015/06/the-adventures-of-tom-sawyer-by-mark.html

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2015/08/the-adventures-of-huckleberry-finn-by.html

Tom Sawyer Abroad by Mark Twain
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2015/11/tom-sawyer-abroad-by-mark-twain.html

Tom Sawyer Detective by Mark Twain
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2015/11/tom-sawyer-detective-by-mark-twain.html

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court by Mark Twain
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2007/01/connecticut-yankee-in-king-arthurs.html

Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2012/11/around-world-in-eighty-days-by-jules.html

Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2013/10/journey-to-center-of-earth-by-jules.html

Sherlock Holmes: The Complete Novels and Stories Volume 1 by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2007/01/sherlock-holmes-complete-novels-and.html

Sherlock Holmes: The Complete Novels and Stories Volume 2 by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2016/04/sherlock-holmes-complete-novels-and.html

The Lost World by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2006/04/lost-world-by-sir-arthur-conan-doyle.html

Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2014/03/treasure-island-by-robert-louis.html

The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2014/05/the-strange-case-of-dr-jekyll-and-mr.html

Kidnapped and Catriona by Robert Louis Stevenson
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2014/09/kidnapped-and-catriona-by-robert-louis.html

The Black Arrow by Robert Louis Stevenson
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2014/10/the-black-arrow-by-robert-louis.html

Peter Pan
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLOY-0V_l_9x4vL4WijnDUC0nWGQddTVcl

George Orwell's Essays:
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2014/09/george-orwell-essays.html

The Time Machine by H.G. Wells
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2014/08/the-time-machine-by-hg-wells.html

The War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2014/10/war-of-worlds-by-hg-wells.html

An Arsene Lupin Omnibus by Maurice Leblanc
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2016/05/an-arsene-lupin-omnibus-by-maurice.html

The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2013/11/the-three-musketeers-by-alexandre-dumas.html

Twenty Years After by Alexandre Dumas
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2013/11/twenty-years-after-by-alexandre-dumas.html

The Vicomte De Bragelonne by Alexandre Dumas
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2014/01/the-vicomte-de-bragelonne-by-alexandre.html

Ten Years Later by Alexandre Dumas
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2014/03/ten-years-later-by-alexandre-dumas.html

Louise de la Valliere by Alexandre Dumas
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2014/05/louise-de-la-valliere-by-alexandre-dumas.html

The Man in the Iron Mask by Alexandre Dumas
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2014/06/the-man-in-iron-mask-by-alexandre-dumas.html

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2016/02/the-count-of-monte-cristo-by-alexandre.html

War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2009/10/war-and-peace-by-leo-tolstoy.html

Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2006/01/crime-and-punishment-by-fyodor.html
Video Review HERE: https://youtu.be/qio83jy-HXc

The Karamazov Brothers by Fyodor Dostoevsky
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2017/02/the-karamazov-brothers-by-fyodor.html

The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2013/02/the-age-of-reason-by-thomas-paine.html

God is not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything by Christopher Hitchens
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2012/05/god-is-not-great-how-religion-poisons.html

The Iliad
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2010/10/defending-iliad.html

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2005/06/random-thoughts.html

The Trojan War by Olivia Coolidge:
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2005/06/because-im-bored-at-school-and-i-have.html

Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2006/05/catch-22-by-joseph-heller.html

A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2007/01/martian-tales-trilogy-by-edgar-rice.html

Vlog Playlist HERE

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

"Going to" versus "Will" Doraemon PowerPoint Game

(TESOL Worksheets--Future Forms, Will, Going to)
Google: drive, slides, pub
[The PowerPoint template is not mine, but was designed by Kyle Ludeke.  The questions are not mine either.  They come from English Grammar in Use by Raymond Murphy (A).  I only claim a transcriber's credit on this one.]




Monday, August 27, 2018

Today, in: Hey! I know that Guy!

Ground Up 017 - A Comedian Abroad w/ Nathan Jaiyeola



Nathan is someone I've been friends with in both Vietnam and Cambodia.  We both started out in Phnom Penh, and then we both moved to Saigon.
(I'm fairly sure I've linked to some of Nathan's stuff in the past off of this blog, but I can't find the link now.)

In the video, Nathan starts talking about his experiences in Cambodia and Vietnam at about the 32 minute mark.  He mentions that he got involved in doing comedy in Cambodia because one of his co-workers was involved in the comedy scene in Phnom Penh.

That co-worker is another mutual friend, and someone else I've linked to off of this blog.  Back in October of 2013.  I'll repost those links below:

My friend and co-worker has been been doing some stand-up comedy here at the Phnom Penh comedy club.  In my humble opinion, he's not half bad either.
A lot of his comedy is based around the expatriate life in Cambodia, so if anyone is interested it might give a bit of insight into life out here.
See his comedy at youtube here , here , here , here and here.


Sunday, August 26, 2018




This is actually a pretty good summary of all the good and bad.

John McCain was cool back in 2000. 
See, for example, this Washington Post article from 2000 about McCain's role in the Shadow Convention.
McCain and the Unconventional Convention

Would Sen. John McCain be the keynote speaker of an alternative political convention with a distinct far-left aroma that intends to ridicule his Republican Party and is partially financed by the archenemy of the war on drugs, billionaire global financier George Soros? That is McCain's intent, even as other Republicans fall off the list of speakers.
McCain is the star attraction of the July 30 opening of the "shadow" convention to be held in Philadelphia while the Republicans meet there beginning July 31. That makes him the only speaker who will address both a major party convention and one of the two alternative gatherings arranged by political gadfly Arianna Huffington in Philadelphia and (shadowing the Democrats) in Los Angeles. McCain will find himself sharing the podium with such left-wing GOP-bashers as ice cream (Ben & Jerry's) maker Ben Cohen and comedian Al Franken.
I remember this.  I was in Philadelphia that week for the protests,  and I remember people talking about McCain's speech at the Shadow Convention.

In 2005, McCain was also cool when he stood against torture.  Back in 2005 I quoted Mr Guam on the subject on this blog

Mr. Guam does an excellent job of framing the debate over Bush's threatened Veto of the McCain sponsored bill to end forbid torture by the U.S. military:
Sen. McCain is a highly respected Vietnam War veteran who served almost five years in a North Vietnamese prison camp. President Bush is a veteran of the Texas Air National Guard for which he did no fighting whatsoever. The irony of a war hero fighting against the use of torture for information and a president with no war experience fighting for the use of torture as executive privilege becomes fairly evident.

But in 2008, when McCain was running against Obama, I hated him. 
All throughout 2008 I frequently linked to anti-McCain articles and Youtube videos on my "Link of the Day" feature. 
For posts from that year in which I talk about McCain in the main body, see: Thoughts on the Presidential Election, and Obligatory Post-Election Post.

See also my review of the movie Game Change.

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Infinitives | Johnny Grammar | Learn English | British Council



This is a video from the British Council.  I used this in my class to review infinitives.  I showed the video, and then we did a board race based on the sentences in the video.  (Students had to run to the board to write the correct sentence--either the same as the video, or any other grammatical sentence that makes sense in context.)
My board race is here: slides, pub

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Vlog: 5 Books to Read on the Paris Commune (Part 1)



5 Books to Read on the Paris Commune (Part 2)



This is the video version of a post I did 2 years ago: Paris Commune Reading List

Below are all the links I mentioned in the video

Bad Mouse Productions Video on the Paris Commune:
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2018/08/the-paris-commune-our-first-revolution.html

Revolutions of 1848 by Priscilla Robertson
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2009/02/revolutions-of-1848-by-priscilla.html

The Fall of Paris by Alistair Horne
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2009/06/fall-of-paris-by-alistair-horne.html

History of the Paris Commune by Prosper Oliver Lissagaray
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2007/04/history-of-paris-commune-by-prosper.html

The Civil War in France by Karl Marx
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2005/10/thoughts-on-marx.html

The Insurrectionist by Jules Valles
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2007/04/insurrectionist-by-jules-valles.html

The Voice of the People by Jean Vautrin
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2007/07/voice-of-people-by-jean-vautrin.html

The Werewolf of Paris by Guy Endore
http://joelswagman.blogspot.com/2008/08/werewolf-of-paris-by-guy-endore.html

Vlog Playlist HERE



English World 6 Unit 8 Vocabulary

(Supplementary Materials for Specific Textbooks--English World 6)


Google Drive Folder HERE
Unit 8 Vocabulary Slideshow: slidespub
Quizlet Handout: docspub



English World 6 Unit 8 Vocabulary
https://quizlet.com/_52s1ff


English World 6 Unit 8 Vocabulary
https://quizlet.com/_52s1ff


English World 6 Unit 8 Vocabulary
https://quizlet.com/_52s1ff



Saturday, August 18, 2018

Today in Hey! I Know that Guy! 

Calvin College friend Phil Christman guest stars on The Meaning of Life TV.  (via Phil's blog)

I'm a couple days late on this, but Rest in Peace Aretha Franklin.

I've used her songs in my ESL listening classes.  Respect and Think



Friday, August 10, 2018

The Frog Prince: The Grimm Brothers' Fairy Tales Story Time ESL Listening

(TESOL Worksheets--The Brothers Grimm Fairy TalesStory Time ESL Listening)
Worksheet: drivedocspub
Video 1: HERE, Video 2: HERE, Quizlet: HERE







Notes:
I did this video two times.  The first time there weren't any big disasters, but I thought my voice was a bit tired, so I did it again.  The first video is HERE.




Video: https://youtu.be/rlVmMEF2O8s
Quizlet: https://quizlet.com/_529b67

Suggested Use:
Step 1: Look at the vocabulary. Check any words that you don’t know in your dictionary.
Step 2: Listen to the video. https://youtu.be/rlVmMEF2O8s (Listen only.  Don’t look at the reading yet).
Step  3: Practice the Vocabulary on Quizlet https://quizlet.com/_529b67
Step 4: Watch the video again. https://youtu.be/rlVmMEF2O8s  This time look at the reading. Read and listen at the same time.
Step 5: Practice the vocabulary on Quizlet again: https://quizlet.com/_529b67
Step 6: Listen one last time.  The last time, don’t look at the reading. https://youtu.be/rlVmMEF2O8s

Vocabulary
able, accidentally, afraid, afterwards, already, amazing, ball, band, beautiful, behind, bottom, carriage, castle, chair, climb, clothes, cool, corner, crackle, crown, cup, daughter, dear, deep, dinner, disgusting, door, drink, drop, during, easy, faithful, fall, fast, floor, follow, forest, frightened, frog, full, get married, giant, golden, grass, ground, grow, happily, hear, heart, hit, hole, hop, horrible, horse, human, instantly, iron, jewellery, keep a promise, king, kingdom, knock, lie, lie down, lift, lose, loud, loudly, magic, marry, matter, meal, mealtimes, near, nearby, nickname, once, once upon a time, outside, pick, pick up, plate, pretty, prince, princess, promise, protect, push, quickly, quiet, ready, reply, ride, sad, seat, servant, short, shut, sink, splash, staircase, stay, still stupid, surprised, swim, thankful, throw, tired, toy, terribly, tree, trouble, troubled, unhappy, upon, upstairs, wheel, wicked, witch, worried, wrong, young

Proper names:
Names of people: Henry


The Frog Prince
Once upon a time, there lived a king who had many daughters.  All of his daughters were beautiful, but the youngest daughter was the most beautiful of them all.
Nearby the king’s castle there was a dark forest, and next to an old tree in this forest there was a well.  (A “well” is a deep hole in the ground from which people can get water.)  On hot days, the youngest princess used to sit by the well, because it was very cool.
The princess had a golden ball that she liked to play with.  She loved this golden ball very much--it was her favorite toy.  The princess liked to throw the ball up into the air, and catch it again.
But one day, as the princess was throwing the ball up, and catching it, she accidentally dropped the ball, and it fell into the well, and sank into the water.  And the well was so deep that the princess couldn’t see the bottom.
Because this ball was the princess’s favorite toy, she was very sad.  She started crying.  She cried louder and louder.
“Why are you crying Princess?” someone said.  The princess looked around to see who was talking, but she couldn’t see anybody.  Then she heard the voice again.  “What’s wrong Princess?  Why are you crying?”
The princess looked down, and saw that the voice was coming from a frog.  “Oh, it’s you frog,” she said.  “I am crying because I have lost my favorite toy, a golden ball, which fell into the well.”
“Stop your crying,” said the frog.  “I can help you.  But what will you give me if I bring your ball back to you?”
“You can have anything you want,” said the princess.  “My clothes, my jewellery, even my golden crown which I am wearing now.”
But the frog said, “I’m a frog.  I can’t use clothes, or jewellery, or a golden crown.  What I want is for you to love me.  I want to be your best friend, and to be with you all the time.  I want to sit with you at the table during mealtimes, and eat food off of your golden plate, and drink out of your little cup, and sleep in your bed with you.  If you promise me all of these things, I will swim down and get your golden ball.”
“Oh yes, I promise,” said the princess.  “You can have all of that if you will bring me my ball back again.”  But in her head, the princess was thinking, “What a stupid frog!  He lives in the water here with other frogs.  He can’t be best friends with a human, and he can’t possibly come to the castle with me.”
As soon as the frog heard the princess’s promise, he put his head into the water and swam down.  After a short time, he came swimming back with the golden ball in his mouth, and threw the ball on the grass.
The princess was so happy to see her golden ball again that she forgot all about the frog and her promise.  She picked up her golden ball and ran back to the castle.  “Wait! Wait!” called the frog, as loudly as he could.  “Princess, pick me up and take me with you! I cannot run as fast as you can.”  But it did him no good.  The princess ran back to the castle, and the frog had to go back to his well again.
The next evening, the princess was eating dinner with the king and with all her sisters.  While they were eating, they heard a splashing sound coming up the staircase, and then, when the sound got to the top of the staircase, there was a knock on the door.  And a voice cried out, “Princess! Youngest Princess! Open the door for me.”  The princess ran to see who it was, but when she opened the door, she didn’t see anyone.  Then she looked down at the ground, and there was the frog, sitting there.
The princess quickly shut the door, and went back to her seat at the table.  She was very frightened, and the king saw that she was troubled.  So the king asked, “My child, what are you afraid of?  Is there a giant outside who wants to carry you away?”
“No,” the princess replied.  “It’s not a giant.  It’s a disgusting frog.”
“A frog?” said the king.  “What does a frog want with you?”
“Ah, dear father,” the princess said, “Yesterday, I was in the forest sitting by the well and playing with my golden ball, when my ball fell into the water.  Because I cried so much, the frog swam into the well and got my golden ball for me.  But the frog made me promise that we would be best friends, and that he would always be with me.  I promised him this, but I never thought that he would be able to come out of the water.  And now he is here, outside, and he wants to come in and be with me.”
While the princess was talking, there was a second knock at the door, and the frog cried out, “Princess! Youngest princess! Open the door for me! Don’t you remember what you said to me yesterday by the well? Princess! Youngest princess! Open the door for me!"
Then the King said, “You must keep your promises.  If you promised to let the frog stay with you, then you have to do it. Go to the door and let him in."
So the princess went and opened the door, and the frog hopped in and followed her to her chair. The princess sat down in her chair, but the frog was still down on the ground.  So the frog cried out, "Lift me up and put me on the chair next to you." The princess just sat there and didn’t do anything, until at last the king ordered her to do what the frog had said.
Once the frog was on the chair, he asked to be on the table. So the princess put him on the table.  And when the frog was on the table, he said, "Now, push the little golden plate nearer to me, so that we can eat together." The princess did this, but it was easy to see that she was not happy. The frog ate happily, but the princess was very unhappy while she ate.
After some time, the frog said, "I have eaten and I am full. Now I am tired. Carry me into your room and make your bed ready, and we will both lie down and go to sleep."
The princess began to cry, for she was afraid of the cold frog which she did not like to touch, and she did not want the frog to sleep in her pretty, clean little bed. But the king got angry and said to the princess, "If someone helps you when you are in trouble, you must be thankful to them afterwards." So the princess picked up the frog with two fingers, and carried him upstairs, and put him in a corner of her room. Then she went into the bed by herself.  But the frog hopped over to the bed and said, “I am tired. I want to sleep in the nice bed just like you. Lift me up and put me in the bed or I will tell your father."
Then the princess became terribly angry.  She picked up the frog, and threw him against the wall as hard as she could.  “Be quiet, you horrible frog,” she said.
But then, an amazing thing happened.  The frog hit the wall, and fell down to the floor.  But when he hit the floor, he was no longer a frog, but a prince, a human prince, with beautiful kind eyes.
The princess was very surprised, but the prince told her his story.  A wicked witch had turned him into a frog.  The witch had left him in the well, and no one but a princess could break the witch’s magic, and turn him back into a prince.
When the princess saw how kind and nice the young prince was, she fell in love with him instantly.  And, it was easy to get married, because she had already promised him that they would always be together.  And her father, the king, had already told her that she must keep her promise.
So, they went to sleep, and in the morning, they got married, and they said goodbye to everyone in the castle, and they left together to go live in the prince’s kingdom.
They got into a beautiful carriage.  (A “carriage” is something that people rode in long ago before there were cars.  It has wheels, and is pulled by horses.)
Someone got out of the carriage to help the prince and the princess.  It was the prince’s servant, named Henry.  (A “servant” is someone whose job it is to help the prince.) Henry was so faithful that his nickname was Faithful Henry.  (If someone is “faithful”, it means that they will never forget you, and always help you, no matter what.)
When the prince had been changed into a frog, Faithful Henry had been very sad. In fact, Faithful Henry had been so sad that he had been worried his heart would break.  So he had three iron bands put around his heart to protect it from breaking.  (A “band” is something you put around something.)
Faithful Henry helped the prince and the princess climb into the carriage.  Then, Faithful Henry got in the carriage himself, and rode behind them.
As they were riding away, the prince heard a crackling sound, that sounded like something was breaking.  So the prince turned around and cried out, “Henry, the carriage is breaking!”
“No, my prince,” said Faithful Henry.  “It is not the carriage.  It is the iron band around my heart.  When you were turned into a frog and put into the well, I was so sad that I had to put iron bands around my heart to protect it from breaking.  But now that I can see you again, I am so happy that my heart is growing bigger and bigger.  And the iron bands around my heart are beginning to break.”
Three times the prince heard a crackling sound, and each time the prince thought the carriage was breaking.  But each time, it was just another band on Henry’s heart.  The happier Henry became, the bigger his heart grew.
And so, the prince, the princess, and Faithful Henry rode away to live in the prince’s kingdom.  And they all lived happily ever after.

Wednesday, August 08, 2018

Vlog: The Sandinista Revolution in Christian Periodicals (My Undergraduate Thesis)



The Sandinista Revolution in Christian Periodicals Part 2



The Sandinista Revolution in Christian Periodicals



Vlog Playlist HERE

Thor: The Dark World

(Movie Review)

Why I Saw This Movie
This movie came out 5 years ago, so obviously I'm a bit late on this one.
Back in 2013, I wasn't entirely committed to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  I would see the movies if they were convenient, but I would just as happily not see them.
Lately, though, I've been getting more and more sucked in.  (The Marvel movies have really been getting better and better lately.  All of the recent Marvel movies from the past couple years have been really good: Civil War, Guardians of the Galaxy 2, Spider-Man, Ragnarok, Black Panther, and Infinity War--all excellent.)

So, the more I get sucked into these newer movies, the more I want to go back and catch the ones I've missed so I can pick up on the continuity notes.  (Several of the Marvel movies since have referenced events in Thor: The Dark World.  For example Ragnarok, and Infinity War.)
I've been wanting to see this movie for the past couple years now, but kept waiting for it to be on T.V.  (I know in this day and age you can find everything off of the Internet, but I hate watching action movies on my small computer screen.  I preferred to watch it in style on the big television screen.)
For the past couple years I had bad luck.  I would always turn the TV on right in the middle of this movie, or right when it was ending.  But then, this morning, I was flipping channels, and I caught this movie right at the beginning.  So I watched it, and here I am with my review.

The Positives
* The coolest thing about these Thor movies is how they blend Norse mythology with comic books.  The 9 Realms.  The Rainbow Bridge.  Vanaheimir.  The Dark Elves.  When I'm watching these Thor movies, I keep thinking: "What kind of whacked out comic book writing is this?" Only to go to Wikipedia, and discover that most of this comes directly from the original Norse Mythology. 
I'm given to understand this was how Jack Kirby wrote the original comics way back in the 1960s, although--comic book geek though I am--I'm not well read in my Thor.
(I also mentioned this in my review of Ragnarok.)

* The interaction between Thor and Loki was good.

* In retrospect, you can see that even back in 2013 they were setting up a lot of the pieces for Infinity War.  It's kind of cool how intricately they had this all planned out.

Negatives
* Asgard was really visually appealing, but the dark world was really boring visually.

* The villains were really boring.

* I really liked Thor's three Warrior friends from the first movie.  They were played by delightfully quirky character-actors.  Plus I liked the idea of Thor having friends and teammates on Asgard, instead of just being a weird loner.
The good news is that they brought them all back for this sequel, but the bad news is that they were barely used.  (And what's worse is that they got killed of in Ragnarok, after again being barely used.  So... so much for those characters, I guess.)

* Natalie Portman wasn't really interesting in this movie.

The Review
You know, we had had so many really great Marvel movies lately, that I kind of forgot there was a period during phase 1 and phase 2 where a lot of these movies were pretty much just place-holders between the big event team-up movies.  But yeah, let's face it, some of these phase 2 movies were pretty forgettable.
This movie isn't bad.  It's competently done, and has a couple decent action scenes.
But it's not great either.  It's pretty meh.  The craziness of Asgard is under-utilized, and the new Dark World is just really boring.

Rating ;
4 out of 10 Stars.  (Maybe border-line 5 stars.)

Marvel Cinematic Universe Links:
1. Iron Man
2. The Incredible Hulk
3. Iron Man 2
4. Thor
5. Captain America: The First Avenger
6. The Avengers
7. Iron Man 3
8. Thor 2: Dark World
9. Captain America 2: Winter Soldier
10. Guardians of the Galaxy
11. Avengers: Age of Ultron
12. Ant-Man
13. Captain America 3: Civil War
14. Doctor Strange--Haven't seen yet
15. Guardians of the Galaxy 2
16. Spider-Man: Homecoming
17. Thor: Ragnarok
18. Black Panther
19. Avengers: Infinity War
20. Ant-Man and the Wasp

Video Review
Video review HERE and embedded below:



Link of the Day
Noam Chomsky on Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s “Spectacular” Victory & Growing Split in Democratic Party

Tuesday, August 07, 2018

The Paris Commune: Our First Revolution

Stumbled upon this video, and I thought I'd post it here.  As someone who's read a lot about the Paris Commune over the years, I this was a pretty decent summary.  
In the abstract, the myth of the Paris Commune is pretty simple--the working class revolution against the bourgeoisie.  But once you delve into the actual historical details, it gets complicated quickly.  There were so many different factions and different personalities involved.
I think this video does as good a job as can be expected of making a simple narrative out of the whole thing.
My only criticism... the IWA actually didn't play much of a role in the Paris Commune.  (The association of the Paris Commune with Marx and the IWA is more myth than reality).  To its credit, this video acknowledges that Blanquists, Jacobins and Proudhounists were a much bigger influence than the IWA, but by repeatedly mentioning the IWA, they give the impression that the IWA was more influential than it actually was. 
That small nit-pick aside, everything else looks accurate to me.

Why does Japan care so much about Blood Types?



This is SOOOOO true! Japanese people are obsessed with blood type.  I can't tell you how many conversations I had in Japan about my blood type.  They were constantly asking me about my blood type, or speculating about my blood type. (Like most foreigners, I didn't know my blood type.  Which always shocked Japanese people.)
My Two Cents:
As despicable as Alex Jones is, it's a mistake for liberals to celebrate him being banned.. 
I know, I know--Youtube is not the government, and it has no protection of free speech obligation.
But the scary thing is, we are increasingly living in a world where the corporations, not the government, control what is acceptable speech.
We might live to regret encouraging them to ban people they don't like.

Sunday, August 05, 2018

The Old Man's Comforts and How He Gained Them by Robert Southey (1799): Poems ESL Listening

(TESOL Worksheets--Poems ESL Listening)
Transcript: drivedocspub
Video HERE





When I was doing this project 3 years ago, I wanted to do "You are Old Father William" by Lewis Carroll, but I thought it would be funnier if the students knew what he was parodying.  So I did the boring version first.  (One of the running gags in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll, from which this poem is from, is that characters keep trying to remember classic poems, but mangle them terribly.)  I'll do "You are Old Father William" as the follow-up.

When All the World is Young, Lad by Charles Kingsley (1863): Poems ESL Listening

(TESOL Worksheets--Poems ESL Listening)
Transcript: drivedocspub
Video HERE



What-if by Shel Silverstein (1981): Poems ESL Listening

(TESOL Worksheets--Poems ESL Listening)
Transcript: drivedocspub
Video: HERE



Saturday, August 04, 2018

I usually buy anything

(Grammar Questions I Couldn't Answer)

A reoccurring point of confusion in the ESL classroom is the difference between "every" and "any".  For example, when offered a choice of foods in a restaurant role play (e.g. "What food would you like?") a student will often respond, "Everything is okay."

I've been taking a lot of pains lately to correct this.  "No, if you say 'everything is okay', it means EVERYTHING.  You want to eat ALL the food.  If you only want one, but you don't care which one, you can say, 'Anything is okay'."

But the other day, we were talking about online shopping.  The question was, "What things do you buy online?"
"I usually buy anything online," a student answered.

It sounded wrong to my ear.  In fact, I think "I usually buy everything online," would have sounded better, even though this goes against what I had been teaching my students for months about the difference between "every" and "any" .

Thursday, August 02, 2018

What Did You Learn in School Today by Tom Paxton (1964): Poems ESL Listening

(TESOL Worksheets--Poems ESL Listening)
Transcript: drivedocspub
Video: HERE





I think this is originally a song, not a poem.  But 3 years ago, when I was researching poems to use in schools, I found this as an example (this article HERE, if memory serves).  So I added it to the collection.

Wednesday, August 01, 2018

What are Little Boys Made Of: Poems ESL Listening

(TESOL Worksheets--Poems ESL Listening)
Transcript: drivedocspub
Video: HERE



Vlog: Identification and Discrimination of /r/ and /l/ Phonemes by L1 Japanese Speakers



Part 2: Identification and Discrimination of /r/ and /l/ Phonemes by L1 Japanese Speakers



Identification and Discrimination of /r/ and /l/ Phonemes by L1 Japanese Speakers: A Comparison Between Two Groups



Vlog Playlist HERE

Episode 79: Polyglots, Andy Kirkpatrick, and English Dominance

(TEFLology Podcast)

The Wolf Hunt: Poems ESL Listening

(TESOL Worksheets--Poems ESL Listening)
Transcript: drivedocspub
Video HERE





Back in 2015 when I put together this collection of poems, I snuck one of my own poems from 7th grade into the collection.  Just to see if I could get away with it.  (No one's called me out on it yet.)  So now that I'm doing listening videos for all of them, I figured I might as well sneak in a listening video for this one as well.