Arsenio’s ESL Podcast | Developing Speaking Task | Pim of Thailand | Rebelling Against The System, Found Her ‘Why’

WOW! Unbelievably grateful for this one! I met her literally through a work assistant upcountry where I had just begun teaching.  Pim, a girl who was embattled and estranged living here in Thailand, had the opportunity to go abroad (to America)….and then she was able to live outside the box rather than tied down in Thai society.  Getting ready to go on a mission with her church, she joins me today to destroy the BRULES (bulls*** rules of society) and give everyone, of all ages, some profound wisdom. 

Podcast

ARSENIO’S ESL PODCAST | SEASON 5 EPISODE 159 | Writing Skill | Report Writing

In business science, technical courses, or even at work, you may be required to write a report. A good report is clear, concise, and divided into sections which will always include an introduction, a main body, and a conclusion. Each section will have a heading.

A report may also include:

  • an abstract/executive summary (the essential elements of the report)
  • method and materials (related to an experiment ore research)
  • recommendations (things that arise from your conclusions)
  • a bibliography (references you source in your report)
  • appendices (information that is too big to go in the main body).

Report writers often use numbering or bullet points (as you see above) to present information simply.

The report below has been written by an HR director of a small company. What problems does the company face?

Coles is a long-standing family grocery store located locally. Because sales have been dropping slowly for the last ten years, research has been conducted to find out the underlying reasons for this. The research involved face-to-face interviews with 30 Coles’ customers and 30 customers of Coles’ closest rival supermarket, Shop Mart. The results of the research established that customers are purchasing less due to long lines at the check-out, no Internet presence, and no delivery service. The results also revealed that customers believe Coles’ goods to be of premium quality, especially their freshly baked goods. Several customers said, “They make the best cakes in town.” Customers believe the staff to be friendly and helpful. Overall analysis of the results suggests that customers would be happy to pay Coles’ prices if they were able to benefit from faster check-out service and home delivery via their website. It is strongly recommended that Coles’ invest in faster scanners to avoid long lines at the check-out, develop a shopping app, purchase delivery vans, and implement a delivery service. In addition, a strategy should be implemented to ensure that current staff members are able to adapt to the new changes.

Skillful 4

Rewrite the report to make it clearer and easier to read. Include bulleted lists and appropriate punctuation, and insert the following headings: conclusions, introductions, recommendations, research method, results.

Podcast

TOEFL iTP | Listening Part C | Everglades National Park

We’re back with another TOEFL iTP Listening, and today is the first day that we’ll be diving into Part C. This is a talk, not between two people, but it could be tour guides, lecturers, or presenters. Just know it’s just one person speaking, so you’ll need to guide yourself along with the talk. Because of the changes in the test format this year, you’ll be able to see the questions down below, so make sure you just follow the conversation. Watch my video and listen to the podcast down below to develop the technique.

Question: Where does this talk take place?

39. A) In a car.

B) On a hike.

C) On a tram.

D) In a lecture hall.

Question: What does the expression “crying crocodile tears” mean to humans?

40. A) It means they have big tears.

B) It means they like to swim.

C) It means they look like crocodiles.

D) It means they are pretending to be sad.

Question: Why do crocodiles have tears in their eyes?

41. A) They are sad.

B) They are warming themselves.

C) They are getting rid of salt.

D) They regret their actions.

Question: What does the tour guide recommend?

42. A) Taking photographs.

B) Getting closer to crocodiles.

C) Exploring the water’s edge.

D) Getting off the tram.

Podcast

Patreon Silver Badge Special | Reading | Should Celebrities Promote Charities?

We’re back after a half-a-year with a Patreon Special! I’m going to start promoting my Patreon heavily so that I have a more exclusive podcasting group that I can communicate routinely with, do Q & A’s, live videos, and more! If you have any questions about my Patreon, feel free to link up with me on social media!

If you have been a long-time follower who has read my blog posts and viewed my podcasts, this Patreon Silver Badge would be a great way to donate to my work, as well as get exclusive content (for ESLers only).

Personal Development Patreon could come in the near future, but I want to focus jus ton the Bronze and Silver Badges as of today.

Here are some of the things you get with the Silver Badge.

This is the second badge of the three, and it will feature the same things from the Bronze badge +

– Personalize lessons that cater to Patrons

– Writing

– Vocabulary

– Reading

– Worksheets

– PDF’s

– Academic Writing (once a week)

– Audios for each lesson

– Additional audiocasts on a weekly basis

– Speaking Task

– A video a week.

Patreon

Here’s an excerpt of what will be discussed in this episode.

Regardless of how famous they are, and despite the star treatment the receive, many celebrities make it a point to give back to charities. Every year, musicians, actors, authors and top athletes share a proportion of their fortunate to help those in need, amount to millions in total. Some have even set up their own private foundations.

ARSENIO’S ESL PODCAST | SEASON 5 EPISODE 158 | Grammar | Participle Clauses

Participle clauses are used to make academic writing more succinct. The present participle (-ing) has an active meaning. The past participle (-ed) has a passive meaning. In this podcast, we’ll be discussing examples and I’ll have some exercises for you available on my website!

  • We use participle clauses to express cause, effect, and condition. Introduced effectively, change can be positive. (= if it is introduced)
  • We can use participle clauses with on, while, after, and before to describe time. On/While facing reduced sales, the company implemented change. (= When they were facing)
  • We use the present particle (having + -ed verb) to say that an action finished before another action. Having found his feet, he accepted the change. (= because he had found his feet).

Rewrite the sentences using a participle clause. Use the prompts to help you.

  1. Because they wanted to create a change strategy, senior managers brought in a consultant.

Wanting______________________________________________________________________________________.

2. When they were reading the consultant’s report, they realize they needed to organize a meeting.

While ______________________________________________________________________________________.

3. The meeting took place in the boardroom and was attended by all management.

Attended ______________________________________________________________________________________.

4. When they heard about the report, the managers had a lot of question.

On ______________________________________________________________________________________.

5. Employees were known to dislike change and so managers thought they may reject the proposals.

Known ______________________________________________________________________________________.

Rewrite the sentences, replacing the underlined section with a participle clause.

  1. As some staff members heard about the changes, they became angry.
  2. Some staff members resigned because they did not welcome change.
  3. After they outlined the need for change, managers received positive feedback from the staff.
  4. All staff received training and successfully coped with the changes.
  5. If they are implemented appropriately, change strategies can succeed.

Podcast

ARSENIO’S ESL PODCAST | SEASON 5 EPISODE 157 | Critical Thinking | Inferring Criticism

Although most academic writing strives for balance and “impartiality,” some authors may criticize an idea or argument that they are discussing without specifically saying they dislike it. Be aware of your own and / or an author’s personal opinions on a topic, which may not be objective. For example, in the excerpt below (or in the podcast), the underlined words suggest the author is critical of businesses that do not try to keep up with a changing market.

The need for change is obvious and yet businesses around the world fail to actively work toward change, unnecessarily suffering the consequences as a result.

Read the following excerpt from Leadership and change management. Underline the sentence which shows criticism.

Like a climber reaching a mountain peak, leading businesses must not spend too long standing and admiring the view or they may find themselves swiftly overtaken by leaner and more adaptable mountaineers. Successful companies such as Apple, Google, and Amazon are all examples of industry leaders which understand that they still have a mountain to climb; while other companies have mistakenly spent far too long looking at the scenery, not appreciating that further heights were there to be scaled.

Podcast

Arsenio’s ESL Podcast | Season 5 Episode 150 | Listening | Understanding Non-standard Accents

English is spoken by millions of people worldwide, sometimes as a first language and often as a learned second or third language. As users of English in today’s world, we need to be prepared to deal with different accents and interact with different varieties of English.

Gain exposure to different accents through listening to and watching programs from media channels around the world. As well as exposing you to different accents, this will also provide you with different perspectives on the world.

When listening to different accents, practice identifying the key features of the accent. If you are going to a context where one accent is dominant, spend time familiarizing yourself with the accent before you arrive. Remember, varieties of English can also differ in the specific vocabulary used. Research differences and ask for clarification.

Task 1 in Podcast – Decide if the sentences down below are true or false.

  1. Chris argues that though a system works now, it might not in the future. T/F
  2. Hailey agrees that clients are no longer interested in face-to-face meetings. T/F
  3. Chris suggests that recording meetings may be a negative action. T/F
  4. Rashid mentions a colleague who would have worked effectively in this situation. T/F
  5. Chandini explains the strength of her views on this issue. T/F
  6. Rashid is concerned about competitors accessing confidential information. T/F
  7. Chris explains that an outside company will be totally responsible for all levels of security. T/F
  8. Hailey suggests that even top-level organizations face issues with security. T/F
  9. Chandini knows about working on tablets from her domestic situations. T/F
  10. Rashid agrees Chris’s final point is a good idea. T/F

Arsenio’s ESL Podcast | Season 5 Episode 149 | Study Skills | Checking your Reading Speed

Welcome back to another podcast and today we’re going to talk about reading speed. Now, I do think this is completely irrelevant because if you don’t pick up what you’re actually reading, the speed doesn’t matter. However, smart reading is more like it. So let’s go over some techniques that can help you.

  • Find something familiar to read.
  • Set the alarm for ten minutes.
  • Read for ten minutes at a speed that allows you to understand what you ready.
  • Count how many words you read.
  • Divide this number by ten, to find out how many words you read in one minute.
  • Do this using different texts. If you read fewer than 200-250 words per minute, even with material that is clear and interesting, it is worth trying to increase your speed.

Tips for improving your reading speed.

  • Keep your eyes moving forward to avoid re-reading parts of the text
  • Avoid moving your mouth or using your fingers to follow the lines.
  • Read with a clear purpose to keep you motivated and on track.
  • Practice reading academic material more often.
  • Actively improve your reading speed through practice.
  • Change your reading speed according to what you are reading. Slow down for sections with unknown technical words and speed up for sections with more familiar language.

Podcast

Study Skills – Reading Speed

STEPHEN COVEY’S 8TH HABIT | SEASON 6 – EPISODE 2 | The Pain

We’re here with the first episode! Well, technically the second, but let’s talk about PAIN. Let’s be honest! TELL ME YOUR PAIN! You don’t? Let me give you a list of what you might feel.

“I’m stuck, in a rut.”
“I have no life. I’m burned out—exhausted.”
“No one really values or appreciates me. My boss doesn’t have a clue of all I’m capable of.”
“I don’t feel especially needed—not at work, not by my teenage and grown children, not by my neighbors and community, not by my spouse—except to pay the bills.”
“I’m frustrated and discouraged.”
“I’m just not making enough to make ends meet. I never seem to get ahead.”
“Maybe I just don’t have what it takes.”
“I’m not making a difference.”
“I feel empty inside. My life lacks meaning; something’s missing.”
“I’m angry. I’m scared. I can’t afford to lose my job.”
“I’m lonely.”
“I’m stressed out; everything’s urgent.”
“I’m micromanaged and suffocating.”
“I’m sick of all the backstabbing politics and kissing up.”
“I’m bored—just putting in my time. Most of my satisfactions come off the job.”
“I’m beat up to get the numbers. The pressure to produce is unbelievable. I simply don’t have the time or resources to do it all.”
“With a spouse who doesn’t understand and kids who don’t listen or obey, home is no better than work.”
“I can’t change things.”

Excerpt From: Stephen R. Covey. “The 8th Habit.”

Come on, do you fit the description? Be honest with yourself. I mean, how many times have I felt this? Loneliness? Australia and Chanthaburi circa 2011-2013. Stressed out? The dawn of COVID. Micromanaged? 2016 and quit that part time job. I’m frustrated and discouraged? NOW!

“THESE ARE THE VOICES of people at work and at home—voices of literally millions of parents, laborers, service providers, managers, professionals and executives all over the world who are fighting to make it in the new reality. The pain is personal, and it’s deep. You may relate with many of the statements yourself. ” – Stephen Covey