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History Lesson

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Read the text and discuss the problem.


1. I try to study, but there is what I have to put up with.

My sister plays the piano - not too good. My other sister plays the flute worse. Sometimes they play together, but most of the time they are fitting. Then I get into a fight trying to get them to be quiet. My mother says that I should just study and mind my business. How can I study?

 2. I consider myself a good student. I’m on the hockey team in winter and basketball team in spring. I am also good enough to be in our school’s Student Tutors Program. We help younger kids with their work. My problem is I never seem to have time to study. I am tired after practice and game, and the younger kids take up a lot of time I need to study myself. My grades are slipping. I don’t want to give up sports. And I like helping the little kids. What should I do?

 3. Math is my worst subject. English is my best. Other grades range from good to so-so. I used to work on my math a half-hour most nights, but it didn’t do any good. My mom says she was never good at math either. It must run in the family.

But now I have to pass math to stay on the basketball team. Any ideas?

 4. I hate tests! I think they’re unfair. I am good in class, I do my homework and get good grades on reports. But when I take a test my head is like a sieve. I can’t remember anything. What can I do? And why should I have to take tests if my class work is good and my other work too?


I am willing to bet that you have the same problems and you can probably add a few to the list. So, I’d like you to be the ones to make suggestions for solving the problems instead of me. Write down your suggestions. Tell about a major problem you have yourself with homework, studying, and tests. Finally, discuss all the problems - including your own - with other kids and your teacher.  You can use the questions given below and the text itself to discuss the problem.


Answer the questions.

1. Do you like to go to school? Why? Do you like to study, or do you go to school to socialize and to be with your friends?

2. You work hard at your homework, don’t you?

3. How many hours does it take you to do your homework?

4. Does anybody or anything disturb or interrupt you from your hard work?

5. What are your favorite subjects?

6. Are you good at them?

7. What are your grades at school?

8. Do you take part in after class activities? (drama, sports, to organize school discos and parties,  to help young kids, others).

9. Do you like tests? It is a piece of cake for you, isn’t it?

10. Do you work hard to prepare for the tests you are going to take?

11. Can you concentrate on the test or is your head like a sieve?

12. What other problems, if any do you have? (Health problem. Too tired after three lessons. Can’t stand that noise at school. The timetable is not good - too many lessons in the second half week, when even strong people are tired.  Too much work to do about the house, which is always, time consuming. I am going to be a professional musician - no time for lessons such as math, English, and so on. I like to read so much, but not my text – books, no time for them. Other problems.)



Time for fun. Enjoy the poems.

*translation by L. Bali


A Student Prayer


Now I lay me down to rest,

I pray I pass tomorrow’s test.

If I should die before I wake,

That’s one less test I’ll have to take!



Молитва Студента


Наконец-то я лягу и оттянусь,

Помолюсь, чтоб контрольную не завалить.

Умереть бы ещё до того, как проснусь,

Хоть одну бы контрольную да обхитрить!

A Teacher Lament

by Kalli Dakos.


Don’t tell me the cat ate your math sheet;

And your spelling words went down the drain,

And you couldn’t decipher your homework,

Because it was soaked in the rain.

Don’t tell me you lost your eraser,

And your worksheets and pencils, too.

And your papers are stuck together

With a great big glob of glue.


Don’t tell me you slaved for hours

On the project that’s due today,

And you would have had it finished

If your snake hadn’t run away.

I’m tired of all your excuses;

They are really a terrible bore.

Besides, I forgot my own work,

At home, on my study drawer.


Учительские страдания или жалИстливая песнь училки



Не ври мне про кошку, что с примерами съела листок,

И что слова для диктанта нечаянно смыло в канаву,

Что задание сделать было совсем невдомёк

Из-за дождя, что с листочком тем поработал на славу.

 Не пой мне, что вдруг, неожиданно так испарились

Карандаши, резинка, а с ними  заданье твоё,

И что бумаги твои так крепко и дружно «сплотились»,

Потому что клей пролился на них, несчастье моё!


Не сочиняй, что часами, как раб на плантациях спину ты гнула

Над работой, которую сдать уже надо сейчас.

И сдала бы ты в срок, если б вашу семью не вспугнула

Змея, что посмела удрать в такой неурочный час.

 Я устала от всей этой лжи отговорок ради.

Все твои объясненья скучны, от них можно сойти с ума.

Да и, кроме того, я сегодня все  планы-тетради

На рабочем столе дома забыла сама…



I love to do my homework,

It makes me feel so good!

I love to do exactly

As my teacher says I should.

I love to do my homework,

I never miss a day.

I even love the men in white

Who are taking me away!




Люблю учить уроки,

И сам себя люблю -

Заданья без мороки

Учителю сдаю!

Люблю уроки делать,

Не пропущу ни дня

И вас люблю, кто в белом,

Уносит прочь меня…



Little Bird in the sky

dropped some white stuff in my eye.

I am not angry. I won’t cry.

I am just glad that cows don’t fly.




В небе птичка, какнув раз,

Мне попала прямо в глаз!

Хорошо хоть, я считаю,

Что коровы не летают.


I Am the Single Most Wonderful Person I Know

by Jack Prelutsky


I ‘m the single most wonderful person I know.

I’m witty, I’m charming, I’m smart,

I’m often so brilliant, I actually glow,

I’m a genius in music and art.


I’m super, I’m splendid, I’m stunning, I’m strong,

I’m awesome, I’m dashing, I’m bold,

I know all the answers, it’s rare that I’m wrong.

I’m an absolute joy to behold.


I’m strikingly handsome, I’m thoroughly grand,

I’m uncategorically clever,

There’s only one thing that I can’t understand -

Why nobody likes me... not ever!


stunning - чрезвычайно привлекательный

awesome - внушающий страх, смешанный с удивлением и уважением,  как при виде  чего-то загадочного и необъяснимого

dashing - stylish and showy; brave and bold

to behold - to look at

grand - attractive in style and appearance


Единственный, неповторимый, любимый Я



Я уникальный экземпляр, я сам собой горжусь.

Я остроумен, я очаровашка, я умён.

Мои способности блестящи – аж свечусь.

Я гений музыки, в искусстве я силён.


Я асс, физически развИт не по годам,

Я удивителен, стремителен и смел.

И на любой вопрос ответ я тот час дам.

Тот счастлив, кто мою персону лицезрел.


Красавец я, и стильно я одет,

Моим способностям аналогов не может быть.

Вот только…почему-то… (кто мне даст ответ)

Не люб я никому, и не с кем мне дружить?


Homework! Oh, Homework!

by Jack Prelutsky


Homework! Oh, Homework!

I hate you! You stink!*

I wish I could wash you away in the sink,

if only a bomb

would explode you to bits.

Homework! Oh, homework!

You're giving me fits.**

I'd rather take baths

with a man-eating shark,

or wrestle a lion

alone in the dark,

eat spinach and liver,

pet ten porcupines,

than tackle the homework,

my teacher assigns.

Homework! Oh, homework!

you're last on my list,

I simple can't see

why you even exist.

If you just disappeared,

it would tickle me pink.***

Homework! Oh, homework!

I hate you! You stink!



* You stink! - ты вызываешь у меня отвращение;

**You're giving me fits. - ты меня доводишь до белого каления!

***it would tickle me pink - вот я б обрадовался!






Я  домашней работе мечтаю отмстить.

Что бы лучше – взорвать? В унитаз ли спустить?

Ох, уроки, уроки…! Надоело решать!

Лучше в море с разбегу, где акулы кишат!

Может, со львом сразиться в ночи,

Ненавистный шпинат съесть, печёнку и щи…

Иль ежа приласкать… чем ответы искать

на заданья, что снова решать и решать….

Ну, вы уррроки! Вот я не пойму,

Кто вас придумал, в каком бреду!

Исчезни вы завтра, вот был бы класс!

Задания на дом, убил бы я вас!


Mary Had Some Bubble Gum

Mary had some bubble gum.

She chewed it long and slow,

and everywhere that Mary went

her gum was sure to go.


She chewed the gum in school one day,

which was against the rule,

the teacher took her  pack away

and chewed it after school.




Любит Маша жвачку

Что не день – то пачка!

Сидит ли Маша, иль идёт,

Всегда, везде она жуёт.


Пришла и в школу как-то раз

с резинкой этой - ужас -  в класс!

Учитель жвачку ту конфисковала

И втихоря сама её сжевала!


There Was an Old Man from Peru

There was an old man form Peru

who dreamed he was eating his shoe,

he woke in the night

in a terrible fright,

and found that his dream was quite true.




Isaac Newton

by Calvin Miller

Sir Isaac Newton sure was smart,

beneath the apple tree.

When one fell off and hit his head,

he said, “Wow, gravity.”

For Newton was a genius

and not a common slouch*.

A genius cries “Gravity!”

Most others just say “ouch!”


*slouch – a lazy and incompetent person




Сэр НьЮтон был, безусловно, умён

И в нужное время под яблоню сел он.

И был он, возможно, слегка удивлён,

Когда яблоко сэра ударить посмело.

Если б под яблоньку сел лентяй,

На падение яблока явно бы  он

Среагировал: «Ой», а может быть, «Ай!»

А умный НьЮтон открыл ЗАКОН!


You Need to Have an Iron Rear

by Jack Prelutsky

You need to have a iron rear

to sit upon a cactus,

or otherwise, at least a year

of very painful practice.



Чтоб суметь на кактус сесть,

Железный зад надо иметь.

Или целый год стараться

Каждый день практиковаться!


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