This is one of a series of colourful images illustrating idioms from different countries. Each one has been translated literally into English and its meaning explained. You can find the others here, along with some interesting cultural observations (thanks to James, from hotelclub.com).
Here is a fun graphic for Valentine’s Day from ESLlibrary.com. You can use it to explain a few “love idioms” to your students. Click on the image for a full-size PDF version of the infographic. You may also want to check out ESL-Library’s new collection of ESL Lesson Plans and Resources on Love and Relationships.
In response to a report that the nerds of Sweden have united to fight against what they see as an unsatisfactory definition of the word "nerd" by the Swedish Academy, BBC News Magazine asks whether "nerd" and its sister word "geek" have now completely lost their derogatory connotations.
But what exactly is the difference between a "geek" and a "nerd"? This infographic should make things a little clearer (click to enlarge).
TRANSCRIPT REPORTER: When it comes to Halloween, it seems consumers won’t be afraid to dish out a little extra cash this year. The National Retail Federation estimates the average American will spend $79.82 on costumes, candy, and decorations for the holiday, up from $72.31 last year.
Every fall, specialty stores like Spirit Halloween move into their temporary locations and get ready for holiday shoppers. Although Halloween is still weeks away, they’ve already seen a steady stream of customers and say it will only go up from here.
CHASE LOFTI, STORE MANAGER, SPIRIT HALLOWEEN: “Our business next week will triple and it’ll just keep going that way until we get to Halloween.”
REPORTER: And it’s not just specialty stores already seeing the traffic, Target clears out a number of aisles and fills them with candy, decorations and of course costumes.
So just what are the hottest costumes this year? Movies like The Avengers and Batman have made superhero costumes fly off the shelf.
Lofti says another hot trend for both kids and adults are skin suits that come both puffy and skinny. 10-year-old Dominic seems to agree with that choice.
DOMINIC, 10: “I’m wearing a morph suit. I’m wearing it because I’m going with my friends as it.” REPORTER: Traditional decorations like skeletons, ghosts and pumpkins continue to be a top seller, but at Spirit Halloween, it’s their creepy animatronics that they can’t seem to keep on the shelves.
CHASE LOFTI: “The number one seller that we have this year is the jumping spider which is new, and it’s a big spider, it sits on the ground and when it’s activated it jumps up at you and they’re very popular and another item that we have trouble keeping in stock.”
REPORTER: While some people are getting in the Halloween spirit, others are skipping ahead a few months and getting ready for the Christmas season. They don’t have the entire selection out yet, but Target already sells a few winter holiday classics.
The National Retail Federation expects winter holiday sales to rise 4.1% this year.
LESSON MATERIALS I used this video with my EM Normandie final year marketing students this morning and produced a questionnaire which you can find here. I also did a PowerPoint with Halloween images, statistics, and a data presentation activity, which you can download here. Happy Halloween!
Today's news is dominated by the Greek debt crisis and fears that Greece may be forced to leave the euro if it can't meet its debt repayments. Greece's total debt amounts to €360bn, but who loaned it all that money in the first place, and what does €360bn actually look like? For answers to those questions, check out this wonderful infographic from Demonocracy.info. And while you're at it, don't miss some other great infographics on related topics such as The European Superhighway of Debt and Global Financial Crisis: A World in Debt, which put all those debt mountains into visual perspective.
VOCABULARY A bank loans (or lends) money to individuals, companies or countries. The money which is lent is a loan. People borrow money from banks. Strangely, English doesn't have a noun corresponding to the verb 'to borrow' (in French they have 'emprunt' from the verb 'emprunter'), so you just have to use the word loan. • I got a loan from the bank to buy a new car. • Barclays is offering loans at reduced rates to existing customers.
Today (March 17) is Saint Patrick's Day. This infographic from market research company Lab 42 shows what Americans will be doing to celebrate the event. To gather data, Lab 42 surveyed 405 social network users, making sure that respondents were evenly distributed across all age groups and income levels.
COMMENT How will you be celebrating St. Patrick’s Day? I've got a bottle of Guinness Export I've been saving especially.
Here's a great infographic from Savings.com which you could use to practise describing trends and data.
LESSON IDEA 1. Print out the infographic (in colour if possible) and cut it up into four separate charts. 2. Put students into groups of four and give each one a chart to present to the others. 3. Get volunteers to come and present their chart to the whole class (using these PowerPoint slides on a videoprojector, if possible).
How much money is lost in gift cards each year? How often are gifts regifted, returned or left unopened? Whose gifts are valued the most? Group payment system WePay has put together the infographic above to illustrate the answer to those and several other questions pertaining to holiday gift-gifting. [via Mashable]
VOCABULARY The infographic title features a play on the word 'misgiving'. If you have misgivings about something that is being suggested or done, you feel that it is not quite right, and are worried that it may have unwanted results. And there's the idea of mis-giving, i.e., making a mistake when giving a gift (though this is not an actual verb).
LESSON IDEA Get students to discuss what gifts they plan to give or would like to receive for Christmas (or gave and received, if Christmas is over). More questions: What's the best Christmas present you've ever received? Is giving more important than receiving? Are you any good at wrapping presents? When do you give/receive your presents? How much have you spent/did you spend on presents this Christmas?