少兒英語故事教學材料：The Slow Computer
Victor turned on his computer. White letters appeared near the bottom of the black screen: “Resuming Windows.” Victor wondered how long it was going to take this time. Five minutes later, the light blue screen appeared: “To begin, click your user name.” He clicked on his name. Then he filled a pot with water to make some fresh coffee. He returned to his computer.
The desktop icons had still not appeared. Victor went into his bedroom, took the sheet off the bed and the pillowcases off the pillows, and threw them all into the clothes basket on the floor. He vacuumed his bedroom, and then returned to his computer. A few minutes later, the desktop appeared, with about 40 icons on it. He liked how colorful they were.
He clicked on his Word icon. Then he went into the bathroom and shaved. He came back out to the dining room, made himself a cup of coffee, and sat down. Word opened, a full half hour after Victor had turned his computer on. Victor typed his first name into the document. For about ten seconds, the screen was totally blank. Then “Victor” slowly appeared, one … letter … after … another.
What’s that smell, Nadine wondered. She had bought a big piece of pork from the market four hours ago. As always, she smelled the pork after the butcher handed it to her. It had smelled fine. But now, it didn’t. She cut into the other side of the pork and took another sniff. Annoyed, she wrapped up the pork, grabbed her receipt, and drove back to the market.
She went up to the same butcher who had handed her the pork that morning. She asked him to smell the pork. He said that it smelled okay and gave it back to her. She told him to call the manager of the meat department. The manager came out a minute later. Nadine told him about the pork. She also told him that he needed to hire butchers who had better noses. He smelled the pork. “Phew,” he said. He apologized to Nadine.
Then he spoke to the butcher, who said he couldn’t smell anything because he had a cold. “You have a cold and you’re handling meat and fish? Go home!” The manager turned back to Nadine, apologized again, and told her she could have a full refund. She gave him the pork and thanked him. She inspected a couple of fresh trout and had them wrapped up. She went to the cashier at the front of the market, got her refund for the pork, paid for the fish, and walked out. While she was getting into her car, the manager told another butcher to grind up the pork with a little lime juice and sell it at a 20-percent discount.
少兒英語故事教學材料：The New Clothes
“What’s the name of that store again? It starts with an ‘A,’” Lorraine asked. Quinn didn’t know, either. It was a four- or five-syllable word that didn’t have anything to do with clothes. Yet it was a well-known, upscale clothing chain for women.
“Why can’t they just name it something simple, like Ross Dress for Less?” Quinn said. “Everyone can remember that name!” He suggested a couple of names—Apostrophe, Apology. No, Lorraine told him, neither was right. “Well,” Quinn said, “let’s go to the ‘A-store,’ and then we’ll read the sign and remember the name again, at least until we leave the store.”
The name of the store was Anthropologie. It was on South Lake. Once inside, Lorraine started browsing through the clothes; Quinn headed straight toward one of various piles of books with catchy titles for sale. Lorraine called him over to look at a pair of slacks. “How much?” she asked. He guessed $55. She told him they were four times that much. He replied that he wouldn’t pay more than $25 for them. She laughed. “You’re so cheap,” she said.
He picked up a book called How to Act Like a Lady, and started reading it. It would be a good book for Lorraine to practice her English and also for her to learn how to act in America, her new country. Lorraine came over with three tops and asked him to accompany her to the dressing room area.