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Sunday, September 30, 2012

American Stories...

American Stories for English Learners
Text & MP3 FilesThere are 57 fifteen-minute MP3 files. That is about 14 hours of listening.
Story 1:
One Thousand Dollars (By O. Henry)

Or download MP3 (Right-click or option-click and save link)
Our story today is called “One Thousand Dollars.” It was written by O. Henry. Here is Steve Ember with the story."One thousand dollars," said the lawyer Tolman, in a severe and serious voice. "And here is the money.” Young Gillian touched the thin package of fifty-dollar bills and laughed.
Story 2:
The Ambitious Guest - Download MP3. Our story today is called, "The Ambitious Guest. " It was written by Nathaniel Hawthorne. Here is Harry Monroe with our story.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

English Club on Privacy, Comfort, and Technology

Fun Fact of the Day: “The first U.S. capital was New York City” (johnb0127.hubpages.com). 
Topic: 
1. What is privacy? Do you think privacy exists in our modern world? How do you try to protect your own privacy? In what ways is our privacy compromised? Do you think that “private” phone calls and emails, for example, are really private? How can you protect yourself? 
2. Some people consider social networks as an “invasion” of privacy? Do you agree? How can information we put on social networks affect our daily lives? What social networking sites do you use? How do you try to protect your privacy on these sites? Is there anything you think you should avoid sharing on such pages? 
3. What other problems have arisen due to social networks? Do you think that people can become truly addicted to social networking? How have social networks changed face-to-face interactions between people? 
4. Some scientists link a reliance on technology and social networks to an increase in depression. Do you think that there is a connection between them? If a person spends their entire day using one mode of technology or another (at work and at home), how may this affect their social interactions? Do they become almost robotic in their daily routines as a result? 
5. Do you think that people have become overly reliant on technology? Is it a good or a bad thing to follow all technological advances? Do you consider some technological changes as obsolete or do you think that any change is a good improvement? 
6. How have technology and social networks severely altered certain individuals’ comfort zones? What is your comfort zone? Does your comfort zone rely on technology and social networks? Does your comfort zone stress the importance of privacy? How does your comfort zone differ in various aspects of your life? 
Schedule: Please put your topic ideas in our Suggestion Box! 
Thursday, 04 October at 5:30 
Saturday, 06 October at 10:30

Effective Presentations. Training 3: Delivering a Presentation

At least, we have the 3d training on Effective Presentations. The next two activities are dedicated to making our own presentations. It is time to create and implement our ideas how to presentable. 
The key words of this training are the following ones: Posture, Presence, Voice qualities (Volume, Pace, Pitch), Breathing and Drinking, Humor, Reading vs. Learning, Contact with Audience, etc. You will be absolutely right when saying that the topic of today's ativity is Delivering Presentations. 
'Giving presentations can be a complex and anxiety-ridden task. Every word, every nuance, your appearance, the tone of your voice, not to mention the content of your presentation, will be scrutinized in every way /http://www.wikihow.com/Deliver-Effective-Presentations/, /http://www.reading.ac.uk/internal/studyadvice/Studyresources/Seminars/sta-delivering.aspx/. 
You are welcome to get to know more on it participating in this activity with maryna Lysun as an instructor.
 


Thursday, September 27, 2012

English Club on "Acquaintances and Social Life"

In our journey through life, we encountered tons and tons of people, and some of these strangers have turned into acquaintances. Then, if you're really lucky, some of these acquaintances may form into friendships. But my best friend has always been there for me and vice versa. You are welcome to discuss this topic today.
Fun Fact of the Day: “The first night baseball game was played in Cincinnati, Ohio” (johnb0127.hubpages.com). Topic:
1. What is an acquaintance? Do you think that it is important to have a lot of acquaintances? How might they be useful? How many acquaintances do you think you interact with on a daily or weekly basis? Where do you interact with them? 
2.What’s the difference between an acquaintance and a friend? How important do you think friendship is in our daily lives? Do you think it’s possible to have many “true” friends? How many people do you consider as real friends? How did you meet them and how long have you known each other? 
3. There is a saying: “to have a good friend, you need to be a good friend.” Do you agree with this sentiment? What makes a person a good friend? Do you think that you can ever have a “best” friend? If so, what would make someone your best friend? 
4. Do you think that having an active social life helps increase or decrease friendships? What do you consider an “active” social life? Is this a priority to you? What activities do you like to do to relax and have fun? How can you maintain a balance between work and social spheres? 
5. Generally, who do you think has better social interactions, married or single people? Why might marital status affect our social lives? Is this a positive or negative change, in your opinion? How can this status alter friendships and increase or decrease the number of acquaintances? 
6. How do our social lives change over time? What are the biggest factors that alter them? Similarly, how do friendships change over time? Is it possible to lose friends and gain others? If a friendship has been lost, can you ever regain this relationship? How can acquaintances turn into friends? Is there anything you would like to change about your social life or friendships? 
Schedule:  Saturday, 29 September at 10:30 
Thursday, 04 September at 5:30

Friday, September 21, 2012

English Club on Best Buddies and Volunteer Programs

Topic: Best Buddies and Volunteer Programs
Fun Fact of the Day: “The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum is the most-visited museum in the U.S.  [It] gets 8.3 million visitors a year and is second only to the Louvre in attendance worldwide” (http://todaytravel.com).
Special Presentation: Best Buddies Ukraine.  “Best Buddies International is a nonprofit organization.  It consists of volunteers that attempt to create opportunities for people with intellectual and development disabilities.”
 Topic:
1. What did you learn about Best Buddies from this presentation?  Are you interested in participating in such an initiative?  What are the biggest personal and community benefits of this program?  How does it help promote acceptance and cooperation?  Do you believe that even one person can make a large difference in a community by helping others?
2. Have you heard of any other similar programs in our community?  Do you know of separate programs designed to meet the needs of specific groups of children or adults?  Are there any special programs in schools or projects designed to help orphanages?  What additional initiatives do you think should be implemented in Vinnitsa to increase quality of life for everyone?
3. How do projects like Best Buddies promote volunteerism on an international level?  What is volunteerism and how does it affect all of us?  How important do you think volunteer work is within a community and worldwide?  Would you volunteer your time for a particular cause?  If so, which is the most important to you?
4. Would you ever take part in a larger global volunteer project, perhaps living abroad for your work?  If so, would you choose to work at a “nonprofit organization”?  What are the benefits for working and volunteering at a nonprofit organization?
5.Ghanaian diplomat Kofi Annan once said, “… let us remember the large numbers of citizens who, day in and day out, through acts of volunteerism large and small, bring hope to so many of the world’s disadvantaged.  Let us ensure that this wonderful resource, available in abundance to every nation, is recognized and supported as it works towards a more prosperous and peaceful world” (www.doonething.org).  Do you agree that we are all a “resource” for volunteerism?  Do you think that volunteer work can create a “prosperous” and “peaceful” world?  How can we each improve the world we live in?

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Serving Diverse Students – EducationUSA Opportunity funding in Ukraine

Opportunity funding, provided by the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, supports talented international students with the application process to U.S. higher education institutions. Opportunity provides funding for talented international students who are highly competitive for full financial aid but who do not have the financial means to apply to universities in the United States and who are not eligible for (or not funded by) U.S. Government-sponsored exchange programs. Opportunity offers no guarantee of acceptance or financial aid awards at U.S. institutions.
          2007 – 2012 Opportunity funding
                • 220 applications, 153 awarded
                • From 70 universities and 15 high schools
                • 158 applicants from outside Kyiv (72%)
                • 85 admitted to U.S. colleges and universities


                   Outcomes 2007 - 2012
                • Opportunity recipients report admission offers from 88 U.S. institutions with $2,849,991 total non-USG funding offers.  77 Opportunity recipients enrolled at 54 U.S. institutions with $2,258,451 first-year funding.
                • U.S. graduate programs offer substantial financial aid opportunities, an ECA priority for the Opportunity Program. 86% of Opportunity applicants in Ukraine sought a U.S. graduate degree.
      2011 – 2012 Opportunity funding
            • 30 applications, 25 awarded
            • From 17 universities and 1 lyceum
        • 18 applicants from outside Kyiv (89%), 68% of recipients studied at/graduated from institutions outside of Kyiv, 6 admitted to U.S. colleges and universities
          Outcomes 2011 - 2011
 • Opportunity recipients report admission offers from 9 U.S. institutions with $263,840 total non-USG funding offers. 
 • 7 Opportunity recipients enrolled at 5 U.S. institutions with $240,852 first-year funding: 2 UGs, 4 Master’s, 1 PhD  • 80% of Opportunity applicants in Ukraine sought a U.S. graduate degree.
153 Opportunity recipients from 56 towns/cities
Opportunity funding provided by the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs – EducationUSA@state.gov
                         77 Opportunity recipients enrolled at 54 US institutions, 2007-2012:
             
Baruch College, Baylor College of Medicine, Brandeis University, Brigham Young University, Butler University, Central Michigan University, City College of New York, City University of New York, Brooklyn College, Duke University, East Carolina University, Florida International University, Foothill College, Franklin College, Golden Gate University School of Law, Grinnell College, Harvard University, Kent State University, Louisiana State University, McNeese University, Michigan State University, Middle Tennessee State University, Minnesota State University at Mankato, New York University, Northwestern University School of Law, Ohio University, Pepperdine University, Princeton University, Purdue University, Rutgers University, Sam Houston State University,  Oregon State University, Pennsylvania State University, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, State University of New York, Suffolk University, Texas A&M university, Texas Christian University, University of Akron, University of Arizona – Tucson, University of Arkansas, University of California at Merced, University of Florida, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, University of Maryland, University of Memphis, University of Michigan, University of Minnesota, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, University of Pittsburgh, University of Rochester, University of Southern California, University of Texas at Austin, Valparaiso University, West Texas A&M University.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

English Club with Matt (A Movie)

English Club – September 18, 2012
Opening Question
· What was the biggest favor you ever asked for from a friend? Did a friend ever ask you for a big favor?
Vocab and Slang from the Film:
·         Clammy
·         College
·         Bite the big one
·         showing some houses today
·         They bought it…
·         Never doubt it for a second…
·         To barf
·         Make it count
·         Faking someone out
·         Phony
·         Dead lock
·         Cramp
·         Palms of your hands
·         To condone something
·         To bum a ride
·         a walrus
·         31 Flavors
·         Sort something out
·         Wound-up tight
·         It Slipped my mind
·         Coast through something
·         Wake-up and smell the coffee
·         Born under a bad sign
·         Freshman
·         I  don’t trust him any farther than I can throw him
·         Ticket to nowhere
·         Bearer of bad tidings
·         Setting someone up
Questions for Discussion
Have you ever skipped school or work? How did you do it? Were you ever caught? How would you spend your free day? 
Team Game

CO.NX Program Archive On-Demand

The Community’s Role in Civilian Security – NEW!
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
13:00 EDT (17:00 UTC)
Description: 144,000. That’s the estimated number of homicides that take place in the Western Hemisphere each year—second only to Africa. Gang violence, drug cartels, organized crime, government corruption and delinquency have weakened the rule of law and robbed communities throughout the hemisphere of a sense of security and confidence in local authorities. Regional violence and corruption, particularly in Central America, led to the social and economic exclusion of entire communities, furthering the vicious cycle. 
Participate in this interactive discussion in Spanish to learn what your community can do to take back the streets and counter security threats. Featured experts will address the root causes of criminal activity and the environments that exacerbate the security situation.
Format: This program will be a video webchat in Spanish. Please click on the URL above to participate. Follow the conversation on Twitter by using the hashtag #SeguridadCiudadana.
Elections 2012 Regional Spanish-Language Webchat Series:
El Camino a la Casa Blanca: Sistema Electoral EEUU (Road to the White House: The U.S. Electoral System) – NEW!Monday, October 15 – Friday, October 19, 2012Program times will vary, see below for details.
URL: http://conx.state.gov/elections2012 (Short URL: http://goo.glAwuRo ). Description: During the week of October 15-19, join U.S. Embassies Bogota, La Paz, Lima, San Jose, San Salvador, Santiago, and Santo Domingo for a seven-part Spanish-language webchat series, “El Camino a la Casa Blanca: Sistema Electoral EEUU (Road to the White House: The U.S. Electoral System)”. Featured experts will focus on issues of interest within the host country and the Americas.
This series will address misconceptions about the U.S. electoral process and explain the role of political parties, caucuses, primaries, conventions, debates, and the Electoral College in the U.S. democratic process. These webchats will also look at what happens on Election Day and the transition between administrations.
Monday, October 15 at 15:00 EDT (19:00 UTC): Overview of the U.S. Political System (Santo Domingo)
Tuesday, October 16 at 10:00 EDT (14:00 UTC): Overview of U.S. Electoral System (Lima)
Tuesday, October 16 at 15:00 EDT (19:00 UTC): The Role of Political Parties (San Jos )
Wednesday, October 17 at 15:00 EDT (19:00 UTC): The Road to the White House (San Salvador)
Thursday, October 18 at 10:00 EDT (14:00 UTC): Obama vs. Romney and the Use of Social Media (Santiago)
Thursday, October 18 at 15:00 EDT (19:00 UTC): Election Day (Bogot )
Friday, October 19 at 15:00 EDT (19:00 UTC): Post-Election Day Process (La Paz). Format: These programs will be video webchats with an audio-only option in Spanish. Please click on the URL above to participate.
SAVE THE DATE! Stay Tuned for More Upcoming Programs:
U.S. Elections Webchat – NEW!
Friday, October 12, 2012
URL: http://conx.state.gov/slovakia.
Description:  Every four years, U.S. citizens elect their next President. If you could vote in the upcoming U.S. elections, who would you vote for and why? Share your thoughts and join us for a live webchat with former Congressmen Larry LaRocco and Scott Klug to discuss the 2012 elections cycle. A successful businessman and consultant, Mr. LaRocco served two terms in the U.S. House of Representatives, where he was part of the House Banking and Interior Committees. Mr. Klug is an award-winning journalist who also served two terms in the House of Representatives. Don’t miss this opportunity to get an insider’s perspective on U.S. elections from two former members of Congress! 
FormatThis program will be a video webchat in English. Please click on the URL above to participate.
The Kimberley Process: Discussing Conflict Diamonds and Reform with KP Chair Gillian A. Milovanovic – RESCHEDULED DATE!
Thursday, October 25, 2012
09:00 EDT (13:00 UTC)
Webchat URL: http://conx.state.gov/digital-diplomacy (Short URL: http://goo.gl/KYacl)
Viewing only URL: www.ustream.tv/conx
 Description:
Do you have questions about conflict diamonds and the international system for managing trade in rough diamonds to exclude those that fund conflict? If so, join Ambassador Gillian Milovanovic for a live online discussion about conflict diamonds and the Kimberley Process. Ambassador Milovanovic serves as Chair of the Kimberley Process, the United Nations-initiated program certifying the origin of rough diamonds from sources that are free from conflict-funded diamond production. 
Format: This program will be a video webchat in English. Please click on the URL above to participate. Follow the conversation on Twitter by using the hashtags #KPChair and #KimberleyProcess.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Potential, Self-Reflection, Ignorance, and Conformity

Topic: Potential, Self-Reflection, Ignorance, and Conformity
 Fun Fact of the Day: 98% of the world’s crayfish is found off the coast of what state? Louisiana (www.factmonster.com).
Topic: 
1. What does the word “potential” mean? Do you think you are living up to your potential in life? If so, how did you get to this point? If not, what do you think you need to do to fulfill your place in this world and be successful? What is your true potential? Do you need to reach it to be successful and even happy? 
2. What is “self-reflection”? How does it help us meetour inner potential? Do you think that you can effectively evaluate your character or do you rely on the help of others to see your positive and negative traits? How well do you think you know yourself? Can self-reflection lead to self-improvement and success?  
3. Can we rely on others to help us to reach our full potential? What is more important, self-worth (appreciation of yourself) or acceptance by others? Is it really possible to “follow your heart” and reach your full potential in personal relationships, at school, and at work without offending others? 
4. What is “conformity”? How does conformity change us? Do you think that you must conform to accepted social norms to reach success? Can we simultaneously conform to social patterns and maintain our individuality? How do you think you can become more successful, by following your dreams on your own or by listening to the advice and guidance of others? Can you fulfill your potential through conformity? 
5. What is “ignorance” and how is it related to conformity? Can an ignorant person ever be truly successful? Do you believe in the saying, “ignorance is bliss”? Can someone who embraces ignorance stay true to their inner character and fulfill their potential in life? 
6. Based on this discussion, how do you think a person’s character and drive for success is really formed? Is it possible to be true to yourself at all times? How can self-reflection and evaluation help us build character? How can conformity and ignorance alter it? Can we ever reach our full potential? 
Schedule: Please remember to put topic ideas in our Suggestion Box! 
Saturday, 15 September at 10:30 
Thursday, 20 September at 5:30- let me know if you would like to lead!

Mysteries and the Unknown

Mysteries and the Unknown 
Fun Fact of the Day: The only active diamond mine in the U.S. is found in what state? Arkansas (www.factmonster.com). 
Topic: 
1. What is a "mystery"? When you hear this word, what do you think of? How often are we confronted with something mysterious in our lives? Do you think mysteries are exciting, aggravating, or uninteresting? Do you think there are things that happen to us that simply cannot be explained? 
2. How are mysterious circumstances usually dealt with? Think of a mystery you have been confronted with in your life. What was the situation and how did you solve it? Do you think that anything is truly mysterious or rather that mysteries are misunderstandings or manifestations (physical examples) of unknown circumstances? 
3.What is "paranormal activity"? Do you believe that certain events or "mysteries" cannot be explained by science? Do you think that paranormal activity actually exists? Do you think it is a myth or a means of control through fear?How can you compare belief in the unexplained and scientific pursuits? 
4. How do you see examples of paranormal activity reflected in society? Why do you think there are so many TV shows and movies with references to ghosts and other supernatural beings? Do you believe in them? Do you mink that a place can be "paranormal" or "haunted" like many shown on television? 
5. What are "ghost stories" and how do they affect us? Do you know any such stories? Have you heard of individuals who claim to talk to supernatural beings or ghosts? Do you believe them? What do you think their motivation may be for pursuing this career path? 
6. How are psychics and fortunetellers viewed in society? Do you think they can really see the future or are they just trying to make money? Would you ever consult a fortuneteller of any kind? Why or why not? Some people believe that dreams also help predict the future. Do you agree? 
7. What is one mystery about the universe that you hope will be solved in your lifetime? 
Schedule: Please remember to put.topic ideas in our Suggestion Box! 
Saturday, OSSeptember at 10:30 
Thursday, 13September at 5:30

Movie Session with Native Speakers

Opening Question
• Did you like or dislike school when you were in the 10th and 11th forms? Were you happy there, or did you want to live like an adult? 
Vocab and Slang from the Film:

•     Clammy
•     College
•     Bite the big one
•     showing some houses today
•     They bought it...
•     Never doubt it for a second...
•     To barf
•     Make it count
•     Faking someone out
•     Phony
•     Dead lock
•     Cramp
•     Palms of your hands
•     To condone something
•     To bum a ride
•     a walrus
•     31 Flavors
•      Sort something out
•      Wound-up tight
•      It Slipped my mind
•     Coast through something
•     Wake-up and smell the coffee
•     Bom under a bad sign
•     Freshman
•      1 don't trust him any farther than I can throw him
•     Ticket to nowhere
•     Bearer of bad tidings
•      Setting someone up
Questions for Discussion
Have you ever skipped school or work? How did you do it? Were you ever caught? How would you spend your free day?
Team Game
Our Schedule
Thursday, September 13 - 1730 Library
Saturday, September 15 - 1030 Library
Tuesday, September 18 - 1800 Library
Visit Our Group on www.Facebook.com - English Club in Vinnytsia

Saturday, September 8, 2012

This Day in Our Center

An amazing picture taken by somebody from English Speaking Club activities, like in 3D. 

English Speaking Club with Matt M. celebrates Vinnytsia Day

Introductions
· Together with your partners, try to rank the best 10 cities in Ukraine. Please consider all aspects of life in the city, including education, work, safety, the environment, museums, cultural life, entertainment, etc. 
· Are you a fan of extreme sports? Are there any extreme sports you would be willing to try? Which ones would you never try under any circumstances? 
· Who was the best boss you’ve ever had? Who was the worst? What made them so good/bad? 
Discussion Topic: Vinnytsia Day
1. In your opinion, what are the main advantages of living in Vinnytsia? How do you think our city compares with other cities in Ukraine? In Europe?
2. Are there any disadvantages or problem areas in your opinion? What should be improved to make life better for the citizens of Vinnytsia?
3. Do you enjoy the major holiday events that happen in our city (Day of Europe, Day of Vinnytsia, etc.)? What changes would you make if you were the organizer?
4. Do you think there are adequate educational and work opportunities in Vinnytsia?
5. Do you have a favorite place or building in our city? How would you describe the architectural style of Vinnytsia?
6. Do you think that people from Vinnytsia are more or less proud of their city than people from other cities? How can you know?
7. What changes do think we will see in Vinnytsia 10 years from now?
Group Contest
Can you guess the city rankings?
Organize your own ‘Vinnytsia Day, but with a very small budget…
What should Vinnytsia be famous for?

Our Schedule 
Tuesday, September 11 – 1730 Library
Thursday, September 13 – 1730 Library
Saturday, September 15 – 1030 Library
Visit Our Group on www.Facebook.com – English Club in Vinnytsia
English Club Blog - www.woavinnitsa.blogspot.com