Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

      All time downloads= 7,350,320

Aug 7, 2009

Beginners.

The other day, I took the children to the local library. It is only a ten minute drive from our house. We had a lot of books that were overdue and needed to be returned. It's one of those great places to go when it is too hot to do anything else. Another benefit of going there is that it forces the children to be quiet. Ha-ha, that was my plan! We actually stayed there for over two hours. The library here in Wenatchee is divided into three sections. The main floor has most of the books, reference books, magazines, seating areas, and librarians' area. Downstairs has lots of computers for researching files of all sorts. Around the corner from this area is a quiet row of desks with internet access. You can take in your own laptop, plug it in, and search the web, or do any kind of work you need to. It is a very handy place. The top floor is dedicated to children. I love going there. The first thing you see as you go up the stairs is a huge, metal, green frog with a crown on it. There is a computer for children to do various learning games on. And then, the main room has a big fantasy mural, lots of toys and books, a tent with big pillows and stuffed animals, blocks of all sorts, and a fish tank. It is fun, imaginative, and cozy. There are two other small areas, amongst rows of book shelves, where children can sit and play with games, puppets, and puzzles. It was in the puzzle area that my children discovered a box of dominos. They were hooked. They absolutely refused to leave. I stopped asking them to get ready to go, because I could see that they were totally engrossed in the game. Dominos are fun, great to hold, and quite addictive.

Grammar notes.

Related vocabulary: overdue, benefit, reference, handy, stuffed animals, to be engrossed.

Exs:

The pregnant lady is overdue; she should have had the baby two weeks ago.

One benefit of being a teacher is that you often learn a lot from your students.

I can't take out that book from the library. It is a reference book.

This new cell phone is so handy! It fits in my pocket, has the internet, and even charges the car battery.

My little girl has loads of stuffed animals in her bedroom.

I was talking to my husband, when I realized that he was engrossed in his book, and hadn't heard a word that I had said.

Advanced.

When we came home from the library, my children found our box of dominos, and immediately started to play. However, they didn't want to play the traditional game of number sequencing. Their goal was to set up a domino course that would all fall down at the slightest, deliberate touch. It wasn't as easy as they were hoping. They had visions of dominos all over the house, up and down the stairs, in and out of rooms, under chairs, through doors etc etc. Well, to start with, they didn't have enough dominos, so they had to settle for an obstacle course of medium size. They became very quiet and very industrious about the project. The whole thing took at least an hour. About half way through, I had to walk away and leave them alone because they were accidentally knocking down the arrangement, and becoming quite frustrated. It's always best for Mum to leave the room at that point and not say anything unless asked for advice. Finally, though, after a lot of trial and error, the domino course was ready for an audience. We all gathered around and waited for the count down. "Three, two, one, go!" Cass put a small, plastic ball on a shoot that pointed at the first domino. Success! It fell over and all the others did the same. They fell up a small stack of dvd cases that were positioned like stairs, then down the other side. They fell over in a circle shape, down an incline, and, for the grand finale, pushed two balls over to a wall of dominos that came crashing down!

Grammar notes.

Uses of the past participle as an adjective: asked, questioned, reminded, beaten, left.

Exs:

She will help you only if asked (only if she is asked to).

They were questioned by the police.

I am reminded every day of my friend who moved away.

The rugby team entered the changing room, tired out, and beaten by their opponents.

The kitten continued to sleep, left alone by the children.