The Randolf sisters, Sadie and Esther, live just a block away from each other. Sadie constantly complains that the people in town are cold and unfriendly, while Esther finds them warm and pleasant.
Although Sadie can't see it, the difference is in the way they approach those people. Sadie and her husband have a lovely house. It's filled with beautiful antique furniture and glassware that is so fragile it could easily be broken by a careless guest or adventurous child. Whenever someone is visiting, Sadie and her husband are constantly "straightening up". Their behaviour seems to indicate that they put more of an emphasis on the looks of their house than on the comfort of their guests. As a result, their nervous guests behave with excessive care — and they leave as soon as possible.
In contrast, Esther's house is not fancy at all. In fact, it's almost shabby. But she and her husband have a relaxed, friendly attitude toward visitors, who don't have to worry about an accident occurring with an expensive piece of furniture or vase. Esther's house is a place where people can drop in, put their feet up on the coffee table, and feel at home.
(from "Grammar Dimensions")
I. Answer the questions.
1. Whose house, Sadie's or Esther's, appeals to you? Why?
2. Which one would you drop in? Why?
3. In what houses do you feel at home? Why?
4. What do you think of those hosts who put more of an emphasis on the looks of their house than on the comfort of their guests?
5. What house would you call lovely?
6. What house would you call shabby?
7. What does home mean to you?
II. Make up dialogues:
1) between Sadie, her husband and their guests;
2) between Esther, her husband and their guests.
Have a look at Picture A and B. Answer the questions. Make use of the phrases and words below:
Picture A Picture Â
It needs cleaning; to scatter; to throw around; to tidy up; to be piled with something; to lack; to be in disorder; untidy; in a mess.
1. What can you see in Picture A?
2. Could you describe it in detail?
3. What attracts your attention in particular?
4. What's your impression of this room?
5. Do you like it?
6. What do you think of its occupant?
1. What can you see in it?
2. Do you like the room now?
3. Could you describe Picture Â in detail?
4. What changes have been made? Why?
5. What is missing in Picture B?
6. Could you compare these two pictures?
7. Which picture do you like better and why?
8. What would you add to make it look cosier?
○ Exercise 21
Read the telephone conversation and draw a plan of the house and the garden. Tell other students how you would furnish the house and use the rooms.
Martin: Hello, Linda!
Martin: Well, good news at last. After looking at about two hundred houses, I've found just the place for us. It's in Blackwood, which is an outer suburb about twenty five minutes drive from the city. I think you'll love it. It's got a lovely big garden and lots of trees.
Linda: Yes, fantastic. Now tell me all about it.
Martin: Well, it's basically a three bedroom house. Very individual in style. There's no front door at all. You come into the hall from a side door. As you walk down the hall, there are two bedrooms on the left. On the right there is a door leading into a huge lounge.
Linda: What about the third bedroom?
Martin: Well, if you keep going down the hall, it is on the right, past the lounge room. The room on the left would make a useful study or family room. The one on the right, which has a wine cellar by the way, would be a very good store room or junk room.
Linda: I see.
Martin: What sold me on the house was the kitchen. It leads off the lounge and is huge. We can eat in there when we don't feel like having a formal meal in the dining room.
Linda: What about outside?
Martin: Well, there's a big wide verandah running across the front of the house. The two main bedrooms look out onto this. It also continues down the left-hand side of the house. Part of it, on the western side acts as a passage to the bathroom and toilet.
Linda: And the garden? You said something about a garden.
Martin: Yes, it is one of the nicest things about the place. A driveway runs down the left-hand side of the house to the garden. On the right of the house there is an orchard with apple, plum and orange trees. At the rear there is a large grassed area surrounded by a border of trees and shrubs. In the middle of the lawn there is an old clothes line.
Linda: That'll have to go!
Martin: Well, it is usefiil.
Linda: I don't care, it is ugly.
Martin: OK, the clothes line goes.
Linda: Well, then, when can I see it?
Martin: As soon as you arrive tomorrow..
Linda: Great. I'll see you then. Bye.
Speak about the room where you live. Make use of the topical vocabulary.
Speak about the flat where you live. Make use of the following questions and topical vocabulary.
1. Where do you live? How many floors does the house have? Is it a block of flats or not?
2. What modern facilities does your flat offer? Do you have electricity, running water, gas, a telephone, a radio?
3. What kind of flooring do you have in your flat?
4. How are the walls of your flat finished? Are they whitewashed, tiled or wallpapered? Do you like to adorn the walls?
5. How is your flat lighted?
6. What kind of curtains (hangings, blinds) do you have? Do they go well with the wallpaper?
7. Is your flat crammed with things?
8. What makes your flat look cosy?
9. Do you have a convenient working space or a desk at home? Where do you keep your books?
Find a photograph or a picture of an interior in which you recognize a taste that is radically different from your personal style. Tell your classmates what you like or dislike about it.
If you have travelled abroad, speak about the difference in interior decorations which one may observe in foreign (British, American, German, etc.) and Russian homes.
Ask your partner the following questions and fill in his or her answers. Then summarize what his/her answers suggest about his or her ideas about home.
Do you think a home is somewhere Yes No Don't Know
you are secure and warm? ____________________
you can be alone? __________________________
Highlight the meanings of the proverbs, making up short situations. Tell them in class.
1. People who live in glass houses should not throw stones.
2. Do not burn your house to get rid of the mice.
3. As you make your bed, so you must lie on it.
4. A rolling stone gathers no moss.
5. Charity begins at home.
6. Home is where the heart is.
7. East or West — home is best.
Translate the following quotations and comment upon them.
'A man travels the world over in search of what he needs and returns home to find it.'
'A house is not a home.'
'Houses are built to live in and not to look on; therefore let use be preferred before uniformity, except where both may be had. '
'Mid pleasures and palaces though we may roam, Be it ever so humble, there's no place like home.'
John Howard Payne
Role-play "Buying a House"
Setting: A real estate agency in London.
Situation: Different people come to the office and have a talk with real estate managers. All of them want to move somewhere: to sell or to buy houses or flats. The managers offer them different housing variants.
Card I—II — Mr Sinless and Mrs' Pure, the real estate managers.
Card III-IV - Mr and Mrs Woolworth. Their family of three wants to move to the countryside from the centre of London.
Card V—VI — Mr and Mrs Littlewood, a retired couple who want to move from a huge house to a smaller one.
Card VII—VIII — Mr and Mrs Sunwin, a young couple who before anything else want to buy a house of their own.
Card IX—X — Mr and Mrs Hewlett. Their family of seven wants to move to a bigger house in the suburbs.
Prepare to write a dictation. Learn the spelling of the italicized words from Introductory Reading and the words from exercise 1 on page 41.
Write a composition or an essay on one of the topics:
1. My Dream House.
2. Home Sweet Home.
3. One's Character Shows in His or Her Home.
4. Why There Is Always a Mess in My Room.
5. I Like to Stay at My Grandma's Place.
Composition and essay are both translated into Russian as "ñî÷èíåíèå" but there is a distinction between them. A composition is fairly short (1—3 pages) and simple. Compositions may be written by students as long as they are capable of writing only on simple narrative or descriptive subjects.
An essay is usually longer (may be up to 20 pages). It expresses ideas, as opposed to simply telling a story or describing something, though it may also be narrative or descriptive. An essay should have some literary merit. Essays are usually written by those who have sufficiently mastered the language to be able to express their ideas in it.
If you choose a topic for an essay, plan carefully before you write. First of all try to explain what the statement means to you. A simple explanation in your own words will help to clarify the issue in your mind. The best approach to plan an essay is to make a list of points, in note form, which you want to include.
There should be an introduction. Plan an opening paragraph that will express your approach. It may be a clear statement of your understanding the point; some illustration of the point or even an expression of disagreement. Whichever you choose, the opening paragraph should lead logically into the body of the essay.
Plan the ideas for the succeeding paragraphs. Do not forgetthat each paragraph develops the idea one step farther. Pay special attention to the logical linking of clauses and sentences.
All points are put in logical order or in order of importance, with quotations if necessary.
Plan a conclusion which brings together the ideas of the essay and represents some kind of resolution of the conflicting arguments.