For class July 1st

Dog Gone


Discussion Questions

  1. What do you think of the government’s action in this case?
  2. Is animal abuse a serious problem in your country? If yes, give examples.
  3. Why do humans like to keep pets?
  4. Do you think people love their dogs or cats too much?
  5. Can you illustrate your opinion for Question 4 with stories?
  6. What name would you give to a dog? A cat? A bird? A monkey? Other pet?
  7. Can you remember any weird or strange names people have given their pets?
  8. Are pets a good substitute for children?
  9. 9.     Why do some people prefer to raise pets rather than have children?
  10. 10.  Should all animals be allowed to run free?
  11. 11.  Is keeping animals in zoos cruel, inhumane treatment?
  12. 12.  Should all dogs and cats have a microchip inserted in them with the animal’s medical information and owner’s name and address? Is yes, why?
  13. 13.  If your dog or cat were dying of an incurable disease, would you 1) nurse it at home until it died 2) bring it to the veterinarian to be destroyed 3) abandon it in the wild to its fate?
  14. 14.  Dogs are being bred smaller and smaller in Asia; some dogs can fit into a teacup. What do you think of this practice?
  15. 15.  Should animals that serve as house pets be slaughtered for food?
  16. 16.  Are there any animal ‘heroes’ in the myths or folk legends of your culture?
  17. 17.  Have you ever rescued a homeless or abused pet? If so, what did you do?
  18. 18.  Are there places in your city that take care of abandoned or abused pets?
  19. 19.  What are the most disgusting pets?
  20. 20.  What animals are eaten in your country that people in other countries might find disgusting?
  21. 21.  What animals that are eaten in other countries do you find disgusting?

For class June 24th

Murder Most Foul


Capital Punishment

  1. Is killing someone always wrong? If not, why not?
  2. What forms of capital punishment have been used in the past?
  3. How are murderers dealt with in your country?
  4. Is capital punishment cruel or inhuman, or a just punishment for murder?
  5. Would you like to see capital punishment abolished? Why, or why not?
  6. In your opinion, does the death penalty save lives, i.e., discourage murderers or has no real impact on the murder rate?
  7. Murder has been described as the only crime that can be paid back exactly. Do you agree?
  8. How do you distinguish between a Mafia hit man and a serial killer?
  9. Should person’s with a low IQ be spared the death penalty while person’s with a higher IQ are not?
  10. What is done with murders that are judged insane in your country?
  11. What other factors do judges consider before pronouncing sentence on the accused?
  12. Is the murder of a pregnant woman a double murder?
  13. “Year and a day rule.” Is the accused still guilty of murder if the victim lives more than a year and a day? If not, how long?
  14. Have you ever thought about killing someone?
  15. Is saying, “I’ll kill you” during an argument a serious cause for concern?
  16. What would someone have to do to make you want to kill that person?
  17. Have you ever known (been acquainted with) anyone who was murdered? If so, what happened?
  18. Should people be put to death, if they kill someone …
  19. in an accident at work?
  20. in the course of a robbery?
  21. while driving sober?
  22. while driving drunk?
  23. while playing a sport?
  24. as part of a terrorist plot?
  25. by selling an untested medicine?
  26. with poison by accident?
  27. by leaving a child at home alone (fire, accident, poisoning, etc.)?
  28. who has raped them?
  29. who has molested a child?
  30. during a kidnapping?

For class June 17th

Boys Will Be Boys—ELEVEN-years-women.html

Gender questions

  1. In your own estimation, are you a typical man or woman in your country? If yes, how do you determine this?
  2. As a man or woman, what are your responsibilities to your family?
  3. What bad habits are tolerated for men, but not for women?
  4. What do men seem to be better at than women?
  5. What are women better at than men?
  6. Is there anything a man can do that a woman cannot do?
  7. Does gender denote intelligence?
  8. If roles were switched, would your mother make a good father and your father make a good mother?
  9. Who talks more, men or women? Why is this so?
  10. Can a man and a woman have a Platonic relationship and not a sexual one?
  11. What professions are dominated by men in your country? By women?
  12. What does the expression “It’s a man’s world, “ mean?
  13. Is a man who cries looked down upon as a sissy?
  14. Is a man who backs down from a fight considered a wimp?
  15. If you saw two women fighting, would you try to break it up or just watch? Why or why not?
  16. What does society think of a woman who uses profanity?
  17. Who are the famous women athletes in your country?
  18. What would the world be like if there were only one sex and people could reproduce themselves without the help of another person?
  19. How about a world in which babies were grown in machines and neither sex was responsible for reproduction (see last question)?
  20. Would it ever be possible to create a society in which homosexuals have all the power? If so, how could this come about?

The Holy Man

Inspirational scene from “The Razor’s Edge.” 1946

Novel by W. Somerset Maugham
Music by Alfred Newman
Directed by Edmund Goulding
Featuring Tyrone Power, Cecil Humphreys

How Easy is it to Bribe You? A Self-Evaluation Questionnaire

Questionnaire: How Easy Is It To Bribe You?
Teacher or student. Answer these questions and score yourself at the end.

1. As a teacher, I would give out grades based on being…
a) concerned with my own personal feelings.
b) somewhat objective.
c) mostly objective.
d) totally objective.

2. If a student offered me a gift before a test, a box of chocolates for example, I would…
a) refuse to accept it.
b) accept it and thank the student.
c) accept it and hope for more.
d) accept it and eat it all myself.

3. If a student gave me a more expensive gift, I would feel…
a) obligated to do something in return.
b) delighted to receive anything free.
c) flattered and appreciated.
d) uncomfortable at accepting anything.

4.In my class, giving me a nice gift would most likely result in…
a) the same grade.
b) a higher grade.
c) a guaranteed passing grade, even if undeserved.
d) a high passing grade, even if undeserved.

5. If a good student asked for a letter of recommendation I would…
a) give the letter only if I received a gift, especially money.
b) make the student wait a long time in the hope of receiving something.
c) write it after a small delay hoping the student would reward me.
d) write it without hesitation.

6. If a weak student had connections (a relationship) with someone important, I would …
a) base the final grade solely on the student’s merits.
b) consider the relationship carefully before assigning a grade.
c) most likely give a passing grade.
d) definitely give a passing grade.

7. It is my belief that, in school, money bribes may be accepted…
a) if everyone else does it.
b) if the amount is large enough, at least several months salary.
c) only if the receiver really needs the money.
d) under no circumstances.

8. Have you ever had the opportunity to offer a bribe of money to anyone?
a) Never. b) Several times. c) Sometimes. d) Many times.

9. Which of the statements below expresses your view of corruption?
a) There is nothing wrong with it as long as both parties get what they want.
b) It is forgivable as long as no one is hurt.
c) It is forgivable as long as the person receiving the bribe really needs money.
d) It is unforgivable.

10. Which of the statements below best expresses your view of corruption in education?
a) It builds an immoral society based on lies and deception.
b) It teaches students an important lesson about the “real world”.
c) It is a good source of extra income for teachers.
d) It gives all students a chance for success.

11. Bribe-taking in my line of work…
a) happens frequently, but few are ever caught.
b) sometimes happens.
c) rarely happens.
d) never happens.

12. What is the cultural attitude in your society towards gift-giving in business and government?
a) Gift-giving is uncommon.
b) It is considered wrong, but tolerated.
c) It is wrong, but lots of people do it.
d) It is a well-established practice.

Scoring for questions 1,3,5,7,9,11
Scoring for questions 2,4,6,8,10,12

Here is what your score means:
31-36. It is your destiny to be on TV in handcuffs being led away into jail by the police. You had better start looking for a good lawyer – now!

25-30. Uh-oh! You are extremely easy to bribe. You might even make excuses for what you do. You have “Bribe me,” written all over your face.

19-24. You are definitely bribable. Stick to what your conscience tells you is the right thing to do, and learn to play by the rules.

13-18. Nobody’s perfect! You have your principles, but need to resist tempting offers from people that may bring trouble. Others see you as an easy touch.

7-12. Be on your guard. You are basically honest. But, that “nice person” with a “small gift” may be looking for more out of you than friendship.

0-6. Congratulations! It is very difficult, if not impossible to bribe you. You appear to be dedicated to your work, and concerned with fair play.

Excerpt from my book “English For Business Studies.” Bookman Books Ltd. 2012″