KA VOICECAST for Monday, December 1st (2014)

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KA NEWS

STORY TIME—The Elves and the Shoemaker by the Brothers Grimm

KEY VOCABULARY

LISTENING COMPREHENSION and VOCABULARY KNOWLEDGE

KA TOP PICKS! Sumi’s TOP TEN Christmas Films

 

KA NEWS for Monday, December 1, 2014

KA’s Winter School program is scheduled for Saturday, December 27 and Sunday, December 28.  Courses for students in grades 1 through 6 will run from 10 a.m. until 3:30 pm on both days.  Learning subjects will include English, science, and art.  Classes are also available for 5th year Juken, Junior High, and Senior High students.  Classes will take place at the KA Jyugaoka, Meidaimae, and Nishifunabashi schools.  Registration deadline is Friday, December 5th.  For more information, including schedule and costs, please contact your school or follow the link below.

KAIS International School and Kikokushijo Academy will be opening new facilities in Toritsu Daigaku offering a daytime international school for students grade 1-8 that will be called KAIS Elementary and Middle School (KAIS EMS). As the new building will not be available until 2015, KAIS will on a limited basis offer its grades 3-6 program at Kikokushijo Academy’s facilities in Jiyugaoka.  The facilities are adequate, with a fine library, functional classrooms, and an overall warm atmosphere. The program will be high-quality and individualized, utilizing a combination of traditional, proven teaching methods, including Kikokushijo Academy’s highly successful English program, as well as progressive and holistic educational practices focused on encouraging creativity, curiosity, self-confidence, and a general positive outlook on life. Small group homework tutoring for all subjects, including Japanese language, will be a key feature of the school, as will dynamic theme-based modules that synthesize literature, history, music, art, and other disciplines. For more information and questions to frequently asked questions, please follow the link below.

KA’s famed essay-writing course for students in grade 4 of elementary school and above is available as a correspondence course for students who live abroad or outside of the Kanto area. This is a serious, results-oriented program for students who wish to pass essay exams for junior high, senior high, university or the EIKEN, TOEFL, or SAT exams. Distance Learning students will write and revise weekly essays, complete grammar assignments, and build vocabulary to raise the register and effectiveness of their writing. Each student will correspond with a Personal Writing Tutor, who will guide the student through the course by email.

Students wishing to participate in the Distance Learning course must have:

• Access to the internet

• A computer with Microsoft Word and Adobe Reader

• A strong desire to improve their writing.

For more information about this exciting new program, please contact Kikokushijo Academy or follow the link.

The KA Kids International Preschool in Tama Plaza is still accepting applications for children aged 3-6. Children who sign up for the KAIP program will be introduced to the fast-paced, advanced reading and writing program with teachers trained in the Read Write Inc. Phonics method, currently exclusive to Kikokushijo Academy. For general information and answers to frequently asked questions, please follow the link to the KA Kids International Preschool Page.

 

 

 

KEY VOCABULARY

 

1. FAULT

A FAULT is the responsibility for something wrong that has happened or been done.

If you don’t finish your homework in time, it’s nobody’s FAULT but your own. 

2. CONSCIENCE

The CONSCIENCE is the part of your mind that tells you whether your actions are right or wrong.

Faron had a guilty CONSCIENCE after lying to her parents.

3. ASTOUNDED

ASTOUNDED is an adjective that means to be very shocked or surprised by something especially because it seems very unlikely.

Joanie looked ASTOUNDED when she was told she would be crowned this year’s homecoming queen. 

4. OBSERVE

To OBSERVE means to watch someone or something very closely, especially to learn more about them.

The patient was OBSERVED around-the-clock for any changes to his condition.

5. CUSTOMARY

If something is CUSTOMARY, it is what people usually do in a particular place or situation.

It is CUSTOMARY to give your waiter or waitress a 15% tip in America.

6.COURAGE

COURAGE is the ability to do something, without showing or feeling fear.

Dennis showed great COURAGE and determination when he stepped into the boxing ring.

7. SKILLFULLY

If you do something SKILLFULLY, you have the ability to do a particular task or activity well.

Emma plays the piano very SKILLFULLY.

8. INTENSE

In the story, INTENSE is an adjective that means very great or very strong.

The heat in the auditorium is INTENSE.

9. RAPIDITY

RAPIDITY is a noun that means the fact of happening at a great speed or rate.

Technology has evolved with extreme RAPIDITY.

10. PROSPER

PROSPER is a verb that means to develop in a successful way.

Carrie seems to be PROSPERING since graduating from university.

 

The Elves and the Shoemaker

By the Brothers Grimm

 

A shoemaker, by no fault of his own, had become so poor that at last he had nothing left but leather for one pair of shoes.  So in the evening, he cut out the shoes, which he wished to begin to make the next morning, and as he had a good conscience, he lay down quietly in his bed, commended himself to God, and fell asleep.  In the morning, after he had said his prayers, and was just going to sit down to work, the two shoes stood quite finished on his table.  He was astounded, and knew not what to say to it.  He took the shoes in his hands to observe them closer, and they were so neatly made that there was not one bad stitch in them, just as if they were intended as a masterpiece.

Soon after, a buyer came in, and as the shoes pleased him so well, he paid more for them than was customary, and, with the money, the shoemaker was able to purchase leather for two pairs of shoes.  He cut them out at night, and next morning was about to set to work with fresh courage; but he had no need to do so, for, when he got up, they were already made, and buyers also were not wanting, who gave him money enough to buy leather for four pairs of shoes.  The following morning, too, he found the four pairs made; and so it went on constantly—what he cut out in the evening was finished by the morning, so that he soon had his honest independence again, and at last became a wealthy man.

Now it befell that one evening not long before Christmas, when the man had been cutting out, he said to his wife, before going to bed, “What think you if we were to stay up tonight to see who it is that lends us this helping hand?” The woman like the idea, and lighted a candle, and then they hid themselves in a corner of the room, behind some clothes, which were hanging up there, and watched.  When it was midnight, two pretty little naked men came, sat down by the shoemaker’s table, took all the work which was cut out before them and began to stitch, and sew, and hammer so skillfully and so quickly with their little fingers that the shoemaker could not turn away his eyes for astonishment.  They did not stop until all was done, and stood finished on the table; and then they ran quickly away.

Next morning, the woman said, “The little men have made us rich, and we really must show that we are grateful for it.  They run about so, and having nothing on, and must be cold.  I’ll tell thee what I’ll do.  I will make them little shirts, and coats, and vests, and trousers, and knit both of them a pair of stockings, and do thou, make them two little pairs of shoes.” The man said, “I shall be very glad to do it.” One night, when everything was ready, they laid their presents all together on the table instead of the cut-out work, and then concealed themselves to see how the little men would behave.  At midnight they came bounding in, and wanted to get to work at once, but as they did not find any leather cut out, but only the pretty little articles of clothing, they were at first astonished, and then they showed intense delight.  They dressed themselves with the greatest rapidity, putting the pretty clothes on, and singing,

“Now we are boys so fine to see,

Why should we longer cobblers be?”

Then they danced and skipped and leapt over chairs and benches.  At last they danced out of doors.  From that time forth, they came no more, but as long as the shoemaker lived, all went well with him, and all his undertakings prospered.

***

LISTENING COMPREHENSION and VOCABULARY KNOWLEDGE

1. FAULT

A shoemaker, by no fault of his own, had become so poor that at last he had nothing left but leather for one pair of shoes. 

Please select the closest synonym for FAULT.

a) defect

b) responsibility

c) flaw

 

2. CONSCIENCE

…and as he had a good conscience, he lay down quietly in his bed, commended himself to God, and fell asleep.

Another word for CONSCIENCE is

a) principles.

b) alertness.

c) intention.

 

3. ASTOUNDED

He was astounded, and knew not what to say to it.

What is an informal synonym for ASTOUNDED?

a) flabbergasted

b) horrified

c) appalled

 

4. OBSERVE

He took the shoes in his hands to observe them closer…

Which of the following is not a synonym for OBSERVE?

a) watch

b) eyeball

c) remark

 

5. CUSTOMARY

Soon after, a buyer came in, and as the shoes pleased him so well, he paid more for them than was customary

Which of the following is not a synonym for CUSTOMARY?

a) patron

b) accepted

c) usual

 

6. COURAGE

He cut them out at night, and next morning was about to set to work with fresh courage…

Which of the following is an antonym for COURAGE?

a) valour

b) cowardice

c) bravery

 

7. SKILLFULLY

When it was midnight, two pretty little naked men came, sat down by the shoemaker’s table, took all the work which was cut out before them and began to stitch, and sew, and hammer so skillfully and so quickly with their little fingers that the shoemaker could not turn away his eyes for astonishment. 

If you are able to do something SKILLFULLY, it probably means that you have

a) lots of time.

b) talent.

c) intelligence.

 

8. INTENSE

At midnight they came bounding in, and wanted to get to work at once, but as they did not find any leather cut out, but only the pretty little articles of clothing, they were at first astonished, and then they showed intense delight. 

In the sentence above, INTENSE is closest in meaning to

a) mild.

b) serious.

c) extreme.

 

9. RAPIDITY

They dressed themselves with the greatest rapidity, putting the pretty clothes on, and singing,

A synonym for RAPIDITY is

a) swiftness.

b) leisure.

c) prudence.

 

10. PROSPER

From that time forth, they came no more, but as long as the shoemaker lived, all went well with him, and all his undertakings prospered.

An antonym for PROSPER is

a) flourish.

b) flounder.

c) thrive.

 

 

 

KA TOP PICKS

Sumi’s TOP TEN Christmas Movies

 

10.       FROZEN

Winner of two Academy Awards in 2014 for Best Animated Feature Film and Best Achievement in Music.  This film is loosely based on Hans Christian Andersen’s The Snow Queen.

 

9.         THE POLAR EXPRESS

The 2004  film is based on the children’s classic picture book written by Chris Van Allsburg.  The computer-animated movie stars Hollywood legend Tom Hanks as the voice of several of the film’s key characters.

 

8.         HOME ALONE

This 1990 film is about an 8-year-old boy who is accidentally left ‘home alone’ while his family flies to France for the Christmas holidays.  A heart-warming and laugh-out-loud family movie.

 

7.         DIE HARD

Action super star Bruce Willis stars as John McClane, a New York City police officer who tries to save his wife and several others who have been taken hostage by a German terrorist during a Christmas party in a Los Angeles skyscraper.  Parental Guidance is suggested.

 

6.         A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS

Join Charlie Brown, Snoopy, and the Peanuts gang in this fun-filled Christmas classic!

 

5.         THE HOLIDAY

Two women, one American, one British, with boy troubles swap homes for a couple of weeks and meet their Mr. Right in the process.  Stars Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet, Jack Black, and Jude Law.

 

4.         LOVE ACTALLY

The story follows the lives of eight very different couples who deal with their love lives in various loosely interrelated tales during the month leading up to Christmas.

Fabulous soundtrack and an all-star cast!

 

3.         ELF

Will Farrel is hilarious as Buddy the Elf who travels from the North Pole to New York City to search for his real father.  Some really moving scenes in which New Yorkers come together to sing Christmas carols to restore the magic of Christmas.

 

2.         A CHRISTMAS CAROL

Christmas just isn’t Christmas without Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. This classic tale about Ebenezer Scrooge and the three spirits that visit him on Christmas Eve has been adapted into film many, many times.  Try The Muppet Christmas Carol or Disney’s Mickey’s Christmas Carol for younger viewers.  For slightly older children, how about the 2009 animated version starring Jim Carrey?

 

1.             IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE

 This 1946 classic, starring James Stewart and Donna Reed is about an angel who helps a compassionate but despairingly frustrated businessman by showing him what life would have been like if he had never existed.  He learns just how wonderful of a life he’s had, hence the title. This is just one of those movies you have to see at least once in your lifetime to remind you that Christmas isn’t just about shopping and presents.  It’s about family. Love.  Compassion. Charity.  It’s about cherishing those special moments with the people you love and making the most of the time we have here on Earth to be with loved ones.

***

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