Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Your Dream Vacation

I'm going to give you $100,000 to go on vacation. You can go anywhere you want. You can do anything you want. You can see anything you want. You are going to go together, so work with your partner and plan your dream vacation. Talk to each other about these questions.

1. Where are you going to go?

2. Why are you going to go to this place?

3. What is the weather going to be like?

4. How are you going to get there?

5. When are you going to go?

6. How long are you going to stay?

7. Who is going to go with you?

8. What are you going to do there?

9. What are you going to see?

10. What are you going to bring with you?

Now, take turns writing your answers and post them on the blog. Help each other with spelling. After you are finished, you can practice reading, grammar, or listening by clicking on one of the links on the right. Or you can ask Joanna to help you open the programs for typing or the picture dictionary.

Have fun!

Monday, December 1, 2008


I hope you had fun learning about a famous person. Now write about the person you learned about. Don't number your answers. Write about him or her. For example:

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was a minister and politician. He was born on January 15, 1929. He was married to Coretta Scott King. They had 4 kids. He grew up in Atlanta, Georgia and went to Morehouse College. He died on April 4, 1963. He was killed by a very bad man. He was important because he fought for civil rights and changed the country.

After you are finished, read your classmates' posts. Then click on the links on the right to practice some grammar.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Finding a Job

Today you are going to look at a website that is like the classifieds in a newspaper. You can search many different areas of work such as "Hospitality" or "Administration". Or you can type in the name of a job you are interested in. Do you want to find a job as a waitress? Type the word waitress in the search box. After you finish the job search handout, please answer the following questions.

1. What is the position?

2. What is the name of the company?

3. What are the responsibilities?

4. Is it full-time or part-time?

5. Do you like this job? Why or why not?

Please read your classmates' posts. Next, you can do a reading exercise or a listening exercise by clicking on a link on the right. If you want to practice typing or go to the picture dictionary ask Joanna to help you.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


Hi Everyone,

We have been talking about jobs, and saying things like "He is cleaning the floors right now", "He cleans floors everyday", "Does he clean floors?" and "What does he clean?". Now that you finished reading the article about finding a job, please answer the questions below. Then read your classmates' postings.

1. Do you have a job? (Remember, being a stay at home mother is work.)

2. What do you do?

3. What do you like about your work?

4. What don't you like about your work?

5. Do you want to find a new job? What job do you want?

Now please click on the links on the right to practice the grammar.

Have fun!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Telling a Story

This is Adele. She lives in France, but her husband is not at home. His name is Philip and he works on a boat. He lives on his boat for many months. She misses him and she is writing him a letter to tell him that she loves him. She is sitting in the chair and she is remembering how handsome he is. She is leaning her face on her hand because she is thinking about what she wants to write. The sun is shining through the window, but she doesn't care. She is only thinking about her husband and dreaming about when he comes home.
Now I want you to practice the grammar. Click on the Present Continuous links on the right. When you are finished, find a partner and click on one of the pictures on the right. Do not choose the same picture as another group. Write a story about the picture with your partner. Then paste the picture into a Word document and type your story. Joanna will show you how to do this and how to decorate your story.
Have fun!

Monday, October 27, 2008

It's almost lunch time and I'm very hungry! I only have a sandwich for lunch today, but if I could have anything I wanted, I would eat Fettuccini Alfredo. This is one of my favorite things to eat. Fettuccini Alfredo is pasta with a creamy sauce made with butter, cream, and parmesan cheese. Sometimes I put pine nuts, spinach, or sun-dried tomatoes in the sauce. I also like to eat warm french bread with real butter and drink a glass of white wine with my pasta. This is my perfect meal. What is your perfect meal? Describe your perfect meal and then read what your classmates write.

Friday, October 17, 2008


I hope you found some interesting activities to do around Chicago. Please answer the following questions and post your answers. Then read what your classmates found.

1. What program did you find for you or your child?

2. What day and time is it?

3. Is there a fee? If yes, how much does it cost?

4. Before doing this activity, did you know that Chicago Park District has so many programs?

Now you can choose what you want to practice. Use the links on the right to practice reading or listening. If you want to practice typing or vocabulary, ask Joanna or Kirsten to help you. Have fun!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Irma's family

My name is Irma .My parents are from Mexico. Their names are david and Hermenejilda. He is died .My mother lives in Mexico. She grows the flowers. Iam married.I have two children. Their namesare Evelyn and Ignacio.My husband's name is Gerardo. He plays soccer three times week. He is 36 years old. He is from Mexico.

Teresa's sister

My sisters . They are my sisters: They names are Irma,Bertha,Ana and Gabriela. They have diferent occupation. Irma is student and hausewife she studies ESL.Ana is hardwork she work s seven days a weky she likes read inglish books.she loves her family.Bertha is merrid .She has tree children.She works at rostourant.Bertha likes compiures and internet.she's very besy.Gabriela work's at the drycleaners and runs every day .Gabriela eat vegetables and drinks water she love healthy food .They are different but they are special.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


This is a picture of my family. I am on the left holding one of my nieces. This picture was taken before my grandfather died and before one of my nieces was born. My father's name is Stan and he is 67 years old. He likes to read and go fishing. My mother's name is Sandi and she is 66 years old. She likes to work in her garden. They are retired so they spend a lot of time taking care of my grandmother. My grandmother is 99 years old and she still lives in her house alone. My other 3 grandparents have passed away. My brother is Brian and his wife is Sonoe. Brian is an engineer and Sonoe is a Japanese/English translator. They have 3 daughters. Aili is almost 8 years old, Aina is 7 years old, and Aila is almost 3 years old. The two older girls play the voilin. My father has 2 brothers and 2 sisters and all of them have children, so I have 9 cousins. My mother doesn't have any siblings. Most of my aunts and uncles live in Michigan, but my cousins live in many different states, so I don't see them very often.

Now, I want to learn about your family. Who is in your family? What are their names? How old are they? What do they do for a living? Where do they live? What do they like to do?

After you are finished writing, read your classmates' postings. Then click on the links on the right and practice either reading, listening, or grammar. Be sure to click on the first link so that you can learn a song about families.

Monday, September 29, 2008


This is what I do everyday. I get up at 6:00 and I eat breakfast and drink a cup of coffee. I brush my teeth and I get ready for work. Then I work from 9:00 to 5:00. After I get home, I make dinner and read a book or watch TV. Next, I take a show and get ready for bed. I go to bed about about 10:00.
Joanna is going to give me a copy of the paragraphs you wrote and I will get to read about what you do everyday. Now, click on the links on the right and practice some of the things we've been studying this week.

Have fun!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


Hello everyone,

Welcome to Fall Term's blog. This is a website where you can write, read, and practice listening and grammar. Joanna will teach you how to use it. This week, I want you to write an introduction. After you are finished writing your introduction, read your classmate's introductions. Here is my introduction.

My name is Robbin. I am an English teacher and I have been teaching for 10 years. I am from the United States. My hometown is Holt, Michigan and it is small. Now I live in Chicago in the Uptown neighborhood. I am not married and I don't have kids. I have a cat and her name is Sophie. My favorite flavor of ice cream is chocolate and my favorite food is pasta. My favorite color is blue, but I wear black a lot because it matches everything.

Now you get to write. Please answer these questions:

1. What is your name?
2. Where are you from?
3. Where do you live now?
4. If you have a job, what do you do?
5. Are you married?
6. Do you have kids?
7. What are their names and how old are they?
8. What is your favorite food?
9. What is your favorite color?
10. What do you want to learn in English class?

Have fun!


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Dream Job

My dream job is to be a flight attendant because I can fly to many different countries all over the world. I can learn new languages and make many friends. I love to travel! I can take vacations with my husband to Europe, Asia, South America, and many other continents.

Sometimes, my job can be difficult because the customers aren't always very friendly. Also, I might be tired because I have to fly very early in the morning or very late at night. But, that's okay because it is a fun job!

What is your dream job? Why?

Monday, June 30, 2008

Independence Day

This Friday is July 4th. This is a very special day because it is the birthday of the United States. On July 4, 1776, the people of the United States declared independence from England.

Americans celebrate this day by having barbecues with their friends and family. They go to parades. At night, they watch fireworks.

What is the date of your native country's independence? What happened on this day? Why is this day important for your country? How do people in your country celebrate this day?

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Food & Beverage

What do you eat and drink for breakfast?

What do you eat and drink for lunch?

What do you eat and drink for dinner?

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

My Favorite Room

My favorite room in my apartment is my living room. It's a big living room. There's a large couch between a lamp and an end table. There's a lamp on the end table. There's a clock on the wall over the couch. There's a coffee table in front of the couch. There are a TV and an armchair in front of the cofee table. There's a window with curtains next to the couch. Next to the window there are pictures on the wall.

I love this room because it is decorated like the 1960's. The couch, lamp, arm chair, and tables are all from Zak's grandparents' basement. The colors of the room are brown, yellow, blue, and white.

It's my favorite room because this is where I spend most of my time. I sit and relax with my husband. We watch TV. We read the newspaper. I take a nap. We eat many of our meals in this room.

What is your favorite room in your apartment? What does it look like? Use adjectives! Describe the location of each thing. Tell me WHY this is your favorite room.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Festival For Families

You and your partner have just finished reading about a festival for families that happens every year in Sacramento, California.

I want you to think about why this festival is important for the community. Why is it important to celebrate different cultures?

Monday, May 26, 2008

My Family

Here is a picture of me with some of my family at my wedding (not all of my family!). My husband Zak and I just got married last August. From left to right, you can see my sister-in-law Kathy. She is holding my nephew James. Next to Kathy is my father Julio and my mother Maria Luisa. I am in the middle. Behind me is my husband Zak (he is very tall!). Next to Zak is my brother Alfredo. Next to Alfredo is my brother Ignacio. Next to Ignacio are my aunt Ines and my uncle Jorge. They came from Argentina to be at my wedding. Not all of my brothers and sisters are in this picture.

I have five brothers and one sister. My parents live in St. Louis, Missouri. They moved to the United States from Argentina about 35 years ago. I am the youngest of the seven children. My oldest brother Julio lives in Italy and is studying to become a priest. My sister Maria lives in St. Louis with her husband and three children. My brother Ignacio lives in St. Louis, too. My brother Federico lives in St. Louis with his wife and son. My brother Alfredo lives in Washington, D.C. and he works with environmental disaster relief. Finally, my brother Jose lives in a monastery in Oklahoma.

I have two families: one in the United States (my parents, brothers and sisters) and one in Argentina (my aunts, uncles, and cousins). We are the only family in the U.S., so we are a small family here. In Argentina, we are part of a very big family.

Please tell me a little bit about your family. Write at least 5 sentences (if there is time and you want to write more, you can). Think about these questions: How many brothers and sisters do you have? Where do they live? Where do your parents live? Does any of your family live with you? If yes, who lives with you?

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Celebrity Daily Schedule

This is a picture of Michael Jordan. He is a very famous basketball player. He is very popular in Chicago. What do you think he does every day? Maybe he gets up at 7:00 in the morning. He wakes up early. Next, he eats breakfast with his family. He eats a healthy breakfast. Then, he goes to the gym to play basketball. After that, he lifts weights and runs. He is very strong. Next, he goes home to eat lunch with his family. He plays with his children after lunch. Then, he watches TV in the afternoon. At night, he eats dinner with his family. He goes to bed at 10:00. He doesn't go to bed late.

With your group, think of a different famous person. Do you have a favorite actor/actress, singer, athlete, writer, etc? What do you think they do every day? Use your imagination! (Don't forget to add an -s to the verb).

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Goodbye Winter! Hello Summer!

This is the last week of winter term. You have all been wonderful students and I am very proud of your hard work! Are you excited for the party on Friday? I am excited to see your tables, eat food from your country, and watch the dancing!

It is not always easy to learn English because you have to study, do your homework, take quizzes, and practice outside of class. What is some good advice you can give to new students who want to learn English? For example, I tell many of my students to do their homework because it is important to study outside of the classroom.

Can you think of other advice?

Monday, March 3, 2008

My Favorite Room

My favorite room in my apartment is my living room. It's a big living room. There's a large couch between two end tables. There are lamps on the end tables. There are two arm chairs next to the couch, in front of two big windows. There's a table between the two arm chairs. There's a coffee table in front of the couch. There's a TV in front of the coffee table.

I love this room because it is decorated like the 1960's. The couch, arm chairs, end tables, and lamps are all from Zak's grandparents' basement. The colors of the room are orange, brown, yellow, green, and white.

It's my favorite room because this is where I spend most of my time. I sit and relax with my husband. We watch TV. We read the newspaper. I prepare for my classes. I take a nap. We eat many of our meals in this room.

What is your favorite room in your apartment? What does it look like? Use adjectives! Describe the location of each thing. Tell me WHY this room is your favorite.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

My Family

Here is a picture of me with my parents and my husband Zak when I graduated from graduate school. This was a very happy day for me! My parents, Julio and Maria Luisa, drove up to Chicago from St. Louis to celebrate with me. I look up to my parents because they have been happily married for almost 40 years. I hope that Zak and I can do the same. My mother and father have always been very supportive of everything I do. All they want is for their children to be happy. I have 5 brothers and 1 sister and we are all very happy! Julio is studying in Rome, Italy to be a priest. Maria lives in St. Louis, Missouri with her husband and three children. Ignacio lives in St. Louis with my parents and he volunteers for a non-profit organization. Federico is in Afghanistan with the Navy Reserve. He will be coming back home next month to his wife and son. Alfredo lives in Washington D.C. and he works in disaster relief management. Jose is studying to be a monk in Oklahoma. I live in Chicago with my husband and I teach ESL at Asian Human Services.

What about your family? Who are your parents? How many brothers and sisters do you have? What are their names? What do they do? How often do you see them and talk to them? Don't worry about grammar and spelling!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

How often...?

In class, we have been talking about our daily schedules and how often we do things. Please make these sentences true by using one of the adverbs of frequency below. Rewrite the sentences.


About the teacher:
1. Our teacher teaches on Tuesday.
2. Our teacher is absent.
3. Our teacher gives homework for the weekend.
4. Our teacher brings food into class.
5. Our teacher loses patience when students don't understand.
6. Our teacher tells funny stories.
7. Our teacher wears jeans to class.
8. Our teacher comes to class on time.

About you:
9. I am late for class.
10. I don't want to do the homework.
11. I go on trips on the weekend.
12. I buy lottery tickets.
13. I spend time with my best friend.
14. I am tired at the end of class.
15. I think about quitting school.
16. I ask the teacher questions.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

My Daily Schedule

My schedule is busy on the weekdays. First, I wake up at 7:00 in the morning. After that, from 7:00 to 7:45, I brush my teeth, take a shower, get dressed, and eat breakfast. Then at 7:45, I leave the house and my husband drives me to work. I get to work at 8:15. I start teaching at 9:15 and continue until 1:00. From 1:30 to 2:30, I eat my lunch. Then, in the afternoon, I plan lessons, meet with other teachers, and do activities to help the students. At 5:00, I go home. Then, I make dinner, eat dinner, and do the dishes. After that, I watch TV, read the newspaper, and write emails. Finally, I brush my teeth and go to bed at 11:00. I am usually tired when I go to bed.

Now, tell me about your daily shedule. Please include times and details about your activities.

Monday, January 28, 2008

The Weekend

I love the weekend because I can relax at home with my husband, Zak. I can sleep longer, read the newspaper, watch T.V., go shopping, or take a nap. This is my favorite time of the week!

On Saturday, I wake up at 7:00 a.m. I take a shower and eat breakfast. I go to Truman College to teach English. The class is from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. After class ends, I go home to Pilsen to eat lunch with Zak. Usually, I watch a little T.V. to relax after teaching. After this, Zak and I like to clean up our apartment. We do the dishes, the laundry, and vacuum. Sometimes, we go to Target to buy different things for our apartment. We eat dinner around 7:00 p.m. On Saturdays, we like to go out to dinner. We go to our favorite Mexican restaurant near our house called Pancho Pistolas. I love the nachos and margaritas. After dinner, we either go home and watch a movie, or we go out to a bar with our friends. Usually, I go to bed at 11:30 p.m.

On Sunday, I wake up late because it is the only day that I can! I usually wake up around 10:00 a.m. I eat breakfast and take a shower. I watch some T.V. I eat lunch around 12:00 p.m. In the afternoon, we like to go to Dominick's to buy food. When we come home from the grocery store, I look at my lesson plans and grade homework and tests. I do this for a few hours. We eat dinner at 7:00 p.m. After dinner, I watch a little T.V. and plan for next week. I call my parents to say "Hello" because I think about them during the week. I try to go to bed at 11:00 p.m. so that I can wake up in the morning.

What do you do on the weekend? Think about Saturday and Sunday from the time you wake up in the morning until the time you go to bed at night.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Countries of the World

Today we started talking about the continents and countries of the world. If I could visit any country in the world, I would visit Brazil because I want to learn how to speak Portuguese. What about you? What country would you like to visit? Why?

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Describe This Picture

Look at the picture above. Please use adjectives to describe this picture. What do the men look like? What are they wearing? Where are they standing? Use your imagination!

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Welcome to Level 2 ESL Class!

Welecome to Level 2 ESL! This term we will learn about family, home, neighborhood, a typical day, food, shopping, jobs, and past tense.

Please write an introduction about yourself. Here are some ideas to write about:

Tell me your name.
Where are you from?
How old are you?
Do you have children? If yes, how many?
Where do you live now?
Why did you come to Chicago?
What do you like about living in Chicago?

Tell me as much as you can about yourself. Don't worry about grammar and spelling! Just WRITE, WRITE, WRITE!