Sunday, December 5, 2010

Summer Holiday English



You can keep up your English through the Summer Holidays at our new site on Facebook!

Click here to LOGIN or SIGN UP FOR Dale Pobega's Free ESL Club on Facebook


I will leave VIDEO MESSAGES through the holidays. I will share links which will help you with your English. We will also do some ONLINE DICTATION and PRONUNCIATION work.

You can ask me questions. You can chat. You can meet new friends. You can leave messages. You can leave photos and videos. Join our network. Your friends and family from around the world can join us too.


I will show you how to join and use Facebook in class this week. If you are not in my class ...

1) Join Facebook at
3) SEARCH for us by typing in DALE POBEGA'S FREE ESL CLUB
4) Apply to join (and don't worry ... you can leave the group whenever you like)


We will do some dictation work over the Summer holidays. Join Facebook, do not miss out!

I will give you the link to the Dictation from our Facebook page.

Here is Dictation #1 , a story written by Level 1 students, playing a picture game in class.


1) Click here to download the DICTATION.

2) Print it out.
3) Fold it in half so you cannot see the whole story.
4) If you are a Level 1 or Level 2 student, fill in the gaps when you listen.
5) If you are a Level 3 student, fill in the gaps but listen again and try to write the whole story without looking at the complete story.

6) Listen to Dictation#1: Love Story ... play as many times as you like. Click here.


We now have many student friends from around the world in our club. There are students from Argentina, China, Cambodia, El Salvador, Egypt, Ethiopia, Mexico, Uruguay, and Vietnam.

Come and meet Tanu on Facebook. She is our first club member from Bangladesh. Here is Tanu speaking about her new year resolutions:

What do you know about Bangladesh?

Read this article on Simple English Wikipedia to find out more.

Let's talk about Bangladesh on our Facebook site.


Monday, November 29, 2010

Doesn't time fly ...


It's the end of the year ... time to relax ... and (after some rest)... to think about the new year to come.

I know you love Bean ... study the song, Auld Lang Syne, they sing in the video.

When do we traditionally sing Auld Lang Syne?
Why do we sing that song?
Do you celebrate New Year? If so, what do you do?

KARAOKE - Auld Lang Syne Let's have a sing along ...


A "Resolution" is a promise to change your life in some way. On New Year's Eve many people make a resolution. Here are my resolutions for the coming year ...

Dale o0(I'm going to cut down on eating sweets)
Dale o0(I'm going to read a short story in Spanish every week)
Dale o0(I'm going to keep on going to the gym and riding my bike to work everyday)

ADVICE: Do not make too many resolutions. You might not be able to keep them!


Make two resolutions ... 1) about your life 2) about studying English.

Use the vocabulary and phrases we used in class:

*cut down on
*keep doing
*try harder

*I promise to ...
*I am going to ...
*I will ...


Please phone your resolutions on to our class Phlog at (use the Mobile English learning sheet with 1800 number, codes and pin from your book!!!)

Here are some Level 1 and 2 Resolutions ... (many, many more at our ipadio.phlog) :

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


Level 3 - Information Texts : Extinct Animals

What do you know about the Tasmanian Tiger? What other extinct animals do you know about? Why are these animals extinct?

Read about the Tasmanian Tiger at Simple English Wikipedia. Click here.


*life expectancy
*current numbers

Can you write a paragraph about the Tasmanian Tiger using the CATEGORIES above as well as CONJUNCTIONS (but / and / however / although, etc) to join your sentences.


Find out about endangered animals, why they are endangered and what we can do by watching this presentation:


Click here to download our Simple English Wikipedia Book called "ESL Endangered Animals".

1) Download the ESL Endangered Animals book above.
2) Use the questions / categories we studied to help you write short sentences about one of the animals in the form.

3) CLICK HERE to go to the FORM

Level 1 - Read and write a simple information text

In class we read about the Yellow-Eyed Penguin from New Zealand.

Making questions from Information Words. Finish writing the questions

Height : How tall are they?

Weight: How ___________________?

Age they live to: How long __________________?

Home country: Where ______________________?

Number left: How many _______________________?

Food: What __________________?


Level 2 - Writing Notes : Don't Forget to Feed the Cat!

Imagine you are going on holiday for two weeks. Here are some things that need to be taken care of:

*mail and newspapers
*rubbish bin

Karaoke ...

Monday, October 11, 2010

Growing Up

Don't Eat the Marshmallow

Level 2 and 3 - Interpret a Spoken Informational Text

Level 2 - You can use the language subtitles first viewing
Level 3 - Do not use the language subtitles first viewing

Watch the video two or three times. LEVEL 3 students ... answer the questions and submit them to me:

If you cannot see all of the form and the SUBMIT button, click here.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Natural (and Everyday) Disasters


Make a list of the "household disasters" you see in the video. Which ones are common? Which ones are ridiculous? Which ones are really dangeous?

Have you got a short story to tell about a common, household disaster? Leave your story on our student Phlog at ipadio. (Use the number and codes I gave you in class).

The 24th of August, 79 AD started like any other day ...

(scroll down for more activities about Pompeii)

Volcanoes - Reading and Writing for Information (Level 3)

As you know I spent my holiday in Sumatra, an island in Indonesia with very active volcanoes.

How and why do volcanoes erupt? Watch the Volcano Song ...

1) Note the key words
2) Can you explain what happens?

3) Watch this BBC slideshow for more information

4) Tsunamis, earthquakes, tornadoes, typhoons ... look at other BBC slide shows and prepare a short written description. How do they happen? Where do they happen? How do they affect lives?

We read about "Super-volcanoes" in class. If Yellowstone National Park explodes the world will be in a lot of trouble. We talked about two past eruptions in class - Krakatoa in the 19th Century and Pompeii in 79AD.

In 2009, Melbourne Museum held an exhibition called A Day in Pompeii

CLICK HERE TO VISIT THE VIRTUAL EXHIBITION Can you find the virtual cinema? Watch the three movies about the eruption of Mt.Vesuvius

1. Watch the short video called The House of the Vine.

2. Read the section DAILY LIFE. Was life in Pompeii the same for everyone?

GRAMMAR - The Passive Voice

to be + past participle

eg. Volcanic eruptions are caused by the build up of pressure.
eg. Glass is made from sand.

Remember, we use the passive voice when the object, not the subject, of an action is most important.

Exercise One:

Complete this online exercise about the passive.

KRAKATOA : The Last Days (Part 1)

This is a short BBC film about the eruption of Krakatoa which took place in 1883 and killed over 36,000 people. The film shows a Dutch family, the Bejjernicks, trying to escape the volcano on a ship with more than 100 passengers ...

What would you do if you were at Krakatoa in 1883?

Watch the other parts of the movie at YouTube.


LEVEL 1 : Taking Phone Messages

1. Use the BLANK message sheet I gave you in class. Listen to the telephone conversation. Fill in the message sheet.
2. Questions:

Who is the message for?
Who took the message?
Who called?
What is the message?
What is Phil's number?

Level 2 examples ... (a little bit more complicated!


Monday, September 6, 2010

Horrible Housework

Level 1 and 2: Watch the video. What can we do to clean up this house? Finish the sentences ...

Empty ___ ________.

_____ up the bedroom.

Scrub the ______ bowl.

Get ___ __ the Kittens.

___ away the things in the kitchen.

Throw ___ the old computers.

_____ the bath!

(Call in the health inspectors?)

Level 3 : Watch this video. How do you feel about this messy house? Who does the owner blame for most of the mess? Do you think Cary's problems are funny or serious?

Speaking Exercise : Giving Opinions

Here are some opinions by others who watched the video:

"it is the parents responsibility to keep a safe enviroment for the kids and set a good example."

"lots of people have kids and thier homes are nothing close to this. I'm surprise she still has her kids."

"How dare you say her kids should be taken away from her! ... some people just need help in their lives, and a gentle push in the right direction. Depression is a sad thing to live with it can destroy families. She obviously got so low she stopped functioning properly."

Do you agree with these opinions? Do you feel sorry for Cary? What would you do to help her? Where would you start?

Phone in your answers to - use the 1800 number and codes I gave you in class.

If you like ...

Watch How Clean is Your House - Blame the Kids 2 (to see how they clean Cary's house)

Watch How Clean is Your House - Blame the Kids 3 ( final part - before and after)


GRAMMAR - Almost, Almost all, Most of

In class we read about three Thai boys sharing a flat. They were very messy but wrote a housework roster to solve their problems.

Remember our sentences? Are they (generally) true? If so, why?

Most men are messy. / Most women are tidy. / All chidren are untidy.

Try this quiz using Almost / Almost all and Most of


Fun Activity ...


Click on this link to go to a website where you can be an interior decorator - create the perfect room for yourself

Exercise: With a friend talk about your room. Which room did you decide to create? What furniture did you include? What furniture did you move or get rid of?


LISTENING EXERCISE : LEVEL 3 : The Waiter and the Lady

1. Take home the sheet with the scrambled story I gave you in class
2. Cut up all of the phrases and put them on an empty table in front of you
3. Play the story below
4. Try and put the story back together
5. Write up the story
6. Answer these questions ... What is funny about this story? What is the joke?


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

I Want to be Elected

The 2010 Federal Election is over! But still we do not have a Government. What happened? Watch the video above. Click here to read the transcript and find more stories and videos about the election result.

What is a hung parliament?
Who has the most seats in the House of Representatives?
Who has most of the seats in the new Senate?
What are independents?
What is a minority government?
Should we have another election?

Discuss these questions with your teacher.

GRAMMAR GAME - Giving Advice

Should / Shouldn't / Ought to / had better / Why don't you ... / What you can do is ...

Click here for a board game. You will need a dice. (Get your teacher to blow up a copy on the photocopier)

Level 2 and 3 : 'D BETTER vs. 'D RATHER

What is the difference?

I'd better go now / I'd rather go now

Complete this online exercise

LEVEL 3 : Either or / Neither nor ...

Neither the Coalition nor the Labor Party are able to form a government.

Try this online exercise

Watch the Mr. Bean video, I Want to be Elected ... maybe Mr.Bean should become our next Prime Minister?


Sunday, August 22, 2010

Making Stuff

Origami - paper folding - is a very old Japanese art. Can you follow Tavin's instructions? Can you make this jumping frog? All you need is a piece of square paper ... and a little patience!

Here is a simple diagram and set of instructions to help you. (Many other great origami models to make here too!)

With a friend or family member choose another piece of Origami to make from Tavin's site on YouTube (click here). Stop and start the video as many times as you like. Have fun!

Watch the Mr. Bean video. How did he make his sandwich? What ingredients did he use?

Print this worksheet about the Mr. Bean video from ESL Watch the video again and complete the worksheet

Listening ... My Favourite Sandwich

1. What are the two types of sandwich the speaker likes most?
2. What does a Foccacia have in the middle?
3. How do you heat up a Foccacia?
4. What is good to drink with a Foccacia?
5. What type of bread do use to make a Lebanese roll?
6. What is the speaker's opinion of the Lebanese roll?

My Friend's Favourite Sandwich

What is your favourite sandwich? What ingredients do you need? How do you make it? Share your sandwich recipe with a friend. Tell the rest of the class or another person about your friend's favourite sandwich.

Speaking : Level 2 and 3

Use your mobile or home phone to tell the world about your friend's favourite sandwich recipe(use the 1800 number and codes I gave you in class to make a phonecast on

Speaking : Level 1 - What would you like?

Practice ordering a sandwich. Use your mobile or home phone. Order your sandwich at!

eg. Give me a chicken sandwich with Mayonnaise, please. / I'd like a salad roll, thanks.

Ordering in a restaurant

In class we put the conversation between a waiter and customer in correct order:

Waiter: Are you ready to order?
Customer: Yes, I'd like soup to start, please.
Waiter: And what would you like for your main course?
Customer: Can I have the fish, please?
Waiter: The fish. Very good. And what would you like to drink?
Customer: Can I have a glass of white wine, please?
Waiter: Certainly. A glass of white wine.
Customer: And I'd like a bottle of mineral water, too.
Waiter: Yes, of course. Thank you.

Listen to some Level 3 examples of Ordering in a Restaurant at our Voxopop Talk Site (Click here)

Level 3 : Ordering a Coffee at Starbucks

This American teacher gives advice about ordering a coffee at Starbucks. Do you think her advice is helpful? Are cafes like this in Australia? What type of coffee does she order? Do you think she is "culturally biased" (or is she just trying to help?)

To look at the script of this video click here. (Also explanations of vocab and American slang)

Level 2 and 3 : Writing ...Taking care of a neighbour's house

In class we listened to someone asking a neighbour to feed the cat while he was away for the weekend. Imagine you are going on holiday for two weeks. Here are some things that need to be taken care of:

*mail and newspapers
*rubbish bin

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Up, Up and Away ...

Online Forms, Schedules, Timetables and Itineraries

Make your own air ticket online! Click here to go to Ticket-O-Matic, a very simple online form where you can create a pretend boarding pass ... up, up and away!

Last week we used the Air Asia website to look for cheap flights between Melbourne and other cities in our region. All flights from Melbourne go to Kuala Lumpur (KL). From KL you can look for flights to other parts of Asia.

Let's find some flights ...go to Airasia's flight search by clicking here

Level 1 - Can you find a return flight between Melbourne and Kuala Lumpur in August for two adult passengers? What time do the flights depart? When do they arrive? What are the dates? What are the flight numbers? How much will it cost?

Level 2 - Search for a return flight from Melbourne to Kuala Lumpur for two people. Also search for a flight from Kuala Lumpur to another destination. Make sure the flight connections are okay. What time do the flights depart? When do they arrive? What are the dates? What are the flight numbers? How much will it cost all together?

Level 3 - A. Search for a return flight from Melbourne to Kuala Lumpur for two people. Also search for a flight from Kuala Lumpur to another destination. Make sure the flight connections are okay. What time do the flights depart? When do they arrive? What are the dates? What are the flight numbers? How much will it cost all together?

B. Continue to the next part of the booking process. Fill out the online form for Booking Contact, Guest 1 and Guest 2. Print out the information. NOTE : DO NOT GO ANY FURTHER.

Listening and Speaking - Inquiry about an airline ticket

Many people prefer to book tickets through a travel agent. This week in class we heard a man making inquiries about a return trip to Darwin.

Exercise: Use the tapescript to write a new dialogue. This time you want to inquire about a return flight to Kuala Lumpur.

Here is some good examples from the Level 3 class:

Exercise: With a class mate, friend or family member phone in your dialogue to the Duke Street Student site on (Click to view)

(You already have the phone instructions and FREE 1800 number and codes ... ps. remember to switch on 'speaker phone' to use your mobile or home phone like a microphone)

General - Australian Government Elective

Download information about the 2010 Federal Election in your language. Click here.

Search these pages to find out where you can vote. Remember: if you live in the Sunshine area you are in the Gellibrand electorate.

Use the polling place locator. Click here to do your search.


Thursday, July 29, 2010

Ring, Ring Why Don't You Give Me a Call?


This week let's use our mobile phones - and home phones too - for learning English!We can now use our phones to make voice recordings on the internet - and it's free. We can do speaking practice, give talks, tell stories and express opinions from anywhere at anytime! Just ring the number and speak!

We will use a FREE service called
I will give you an instruction sheet, the free 1800 number and password in class.

Listen to this recording I made online from my home phone! It's simple!

Level 3 - What are they saying about the Election on Community Radio?

1)Listen to one of the community radio programs below

2)Use your mobile to tell me (in English!)what is being said about the Election

3) Use the FORM below to write a short summary about what they are saying on community radio about the Election

We will compare your spoken and written summaries in class.







Here are some of your fantastic phonecasts:

Tanu about the Hindi radio broadcast...

Tuyet about the Vietnamese radio broadcast...

Abir about the Arabic radio broadcast ...

Kim about the Vietnamese radio broadcast...


Here is a link to the lyrics of "Ring, Ring" by Abba.

Level 2 and 3: GRAMMAR - Reported / Indirect Speech

Try this online quiz on Indirect Speech.

Level 2: Listening and Speaking - Lost in England


Use the worksheet I gave you in class - look at the maps, read the dialogues. With a friend practice the dialogues in class.


Can you give instructions by only looking at the maps? Use your mobile or telephone to give instructions.

(Use the instruction sheet, free 1800 number and code I give you in class to phone into


Use the BBC Game to help people get to their destinations and collect things along the way. Fun! Fun! Fun!


Level 1 - The 24 Hour Clock

Look at this clock and review what we learnt in class about telling the time.

1) Ring using the instruction sheet I gave you in class

2) Practice telling me the time

eg. This is me telling the time in the normal way. Can you tell me the time using the 24 hour clock?



Sunday, July 25, 2010

Election 2010 : Issues

ISSUES: TV ADS - Labor, Liberal, Green

Labor, Liberal, Green. Same or different?

1)Watch the ads above and below.

2)Download this worksheet:

3)Make notes / or write words you see or hear on what they say about:

the economy
the environment

Be a PA for an MP. Organize a politican's diary!

Play this fun game from the Kids View Parliament website! Click here!


Here is an interesting video about the PM, Julia Gillard and the ex-PM, Kevin Rudd. To read the script and other material click here.

Level 1 - Let's Practise Telling the Time

Here are some of my favourite online games to help you tell the time ...

Click here to play STOP THE CLOCK (15 minute intervals - easy)

Click here to play STOP THE CLOCK (5 min intervals - medium)

Click here to play STOP THE CLOCK (1 minute intervals - harder)

Click here to play BANG ON TIME (tricky!)

Click here for other games and worksheets about telling the time (Maths Zone)


Monday, July 19, 2010

Love Thy Neighbour


Do you think someone should keep 130 cats in a house or flat?

What problems would this lady have living with 130 cats in Sunshine?

What does your local council say about pets?


Read the local council regulations for keeping pets here.

Download the Animal Registration Form from the same page. Read it with your teacher. Fill in the form for the lady from Siberia!

LEVEL 2 and 3

Remember the article we read in class, Love Your Neighbour? Sometimes it can be difficult!?

We discussed these problems:

They talk loudly.
Their babies cry all night.
They have noisy parties.
Their dogs bark.
They watch TV late at night.
They move furniture.
They play the violin.
They argue with their partner.

Speaking: Requests - Asking your neighbours to change their behaviour

Click here to go to VOXOPOP.

Use the situations above. Practise kindly asking your neighbours to change their behaviour.

eg. "Could you please turn down the TV? It's late. I have to get up early.
eg. "Would you please stop moving your furniture. My kids can't sleep.


Sunday, July 11, 2010

Democracy, Voting, Politicians & Parties

Welcome back to Duke Street students !!!

This semester we begin our new learning unit: Australian Government. There will be a Federal Election soon and then a State Election in November. So this is a good time for us to learn about Australian Government, Voting, Politicians and Parties.

But before we start ...


Click here and go to the AEC Website to check if you are enrolled to vote. Voting is important. Make sure you are enrolled!

If you are NOT enrolled or have changed your address, please click here and follow the steps for FILLING OUT AN ENROLMENT FORM, PRINTING & SIGNING and RETURNING IT TO THE AEC. ASK YOUR TEACHER TO HELP YOU !!!

Now let's start with a guessing game ...



1) Match the photos with their names:




2) Do you know their surnames?

3) Match the people and their jobs:


Prime Minister

Opposition Leader

4) Match the people and their parties:

Let's make some sentences ...

eg. Julia _______ is the ___________ and she is the leader of the ________________.

Who are these two women? What are their jobs? Are they from a political party? What do they do in our system of Government?

Level 3 : Who is Julia Gillard?

Watch the video. Take notes. What do they say about Julia Gillard in relation to :

Deputy Prime Minister
six years later (1966)
student politics
John Brumby, a shadow minister
education / employment / social inclusion


Who are these two men? What are their jobs? Which parties are they from? Write sentences about them.

Listening: A Day in the Life of a Politician

We are going to watch a short video about Andrea Coote (a Victorian Liberal Party MP).

Level 1 : Download the activity for the video here.

Level 2 and 3: Download the activity for the video here.

GRAMMAR: WHO DECIDES? Federal / State / Local Government

Instructions: Click on the picture below and print out in full size

1) Can you make 10 sentences using the Present Continuous tense? eg. The worker is sweeping the road.

2) Can you name the services and/or guess who takes care of these government areas eg. The worker sweeping the road = road repairs and maintenance = local government. (Work with your teacher)


Here are some politicians from different times and places. Who are they? What words would you use to describe them? Were they good or bad politicians? Or both? Why?

(Teachers: Click here for excellent FREE materials about Government and voting)