Obsessive Compulsive Cleaners Lesson: Using context to infer word meanings!

Obsessive Compulsive Cleaners TV series.

During this class, I asked a psychology student what topic interests her. She said OCD interests here so we found a show from England, which allowed her to practice listening to different accents then American English! The show involved Obsessive Compulsive Cleaners going to the homes of hoarders to clean! As the TV show gave statistics, I would occasionally stop it and ask her questions about what was said. If she didn’t understand, I’d explain what happened and have her listen for it again. The teacher can occasionally stop the video to ask comprehension questions as well.

Teaching students how to understand words by listening to the context of words that they do understand. For instance there would be the word harsh, dusty or dirty, three words the student didn’t know. I’d repeat the phrases, by emphasising the words that she did understand. I’d then does the word harsh, sound positive or negative in the context. She’d say negative, and I’d say exactly!

For exams such as the TOEFL, listening comprehension and understanding at least the general meaning of a word is essential for such exams. Teaching students these kinds of critical thinking skills is essential, rather than just memorising word meaning, knowing how to use the phrases that come before or after a word that you don’t understand, allows the listener/reading to at least infer about potential meanings!

Here were the two videos we watched from the Obsessive Compulsive Cleaners TV series. I then asked the students to write a short resume of what they learned and what happened.

Comparing Brazilian and American National Expenditures

Please write an overview comparing Brazil and the USA’s expenditures on Education, National Security and Health Care.
Please write a short reflection comparing the percentage they spend on various topics?



Send me your story and I will edit it and then we can post it on the blog!!

Obituary past tense story telling

Hand out a series of pictures of people, and students need to describe a biography of that person and how they died, based on how a traditional Obituary is written!

Send me the story when you’re done and I can edit it for you and share it on the blog!



Obituary by Edeval Miranda 
They are Jose and John. They had two children each. They live in São Paulo.
They are 30 and 36 years old when they became firefighters. They everyday
go to work happily. One day, they were called to stop the fire when there
was an explosion and they died in an instant. They were 40 and 46 years old
when they died. Rest in peace their souls.
Obituary by Hallyson César
Mary was 20 years old when she started a conversation with her best friend, suzy, at the local restaurant. They were eating ice cream and talking about their lives. Mary and Suzan were living in São Paulo for many ears studying gastronomy, but their relationship was not so good recently. They started a discussion about who’s the best cook. Mary was very nervous and she started screaming at Suzy. She made Suzy eat all the ice cream in the store. Suzy died happily with a cherry on her mouth. She was 23 years old when she died. Rest in Peace his soul.

Reflecting on the World Cup and Fifa in Brazil


Watch this video about FIFA’s World Cup in Brazil, and write an opinion response to it. Even though we don’t have physical class, every week I will post one interesting fun work assignment for those who want to continue practicing English.

Do you agree or disagree with the video? What do you like and not like about it? What do you personally think of the World Cup, FIFA and Brazil? List two or three new things you learned from the video. It doesn’t need to be a long essay, it can be a short paragraph as well! I look forward to hear your reactions!

You can send me what you write up or you can type up your response and post it directly to the comments section of this blog under the title!

Have a great break, and GOOOOO BRAZIL!