Category Archives: Uncategorized

609. The LEP MeetUp in London / Brexit / Talking to my Daughter

Here’s an end-of-summer ramble, including details of what happened at the LEP meetup in London in July and some recordings of LEPsters who attended the event. There’s also talk of Brexit and some interviews with my daughter who is beginning to speak.

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Episode Notes and Transcriptions

The world appears to be burning

No-deal Brexit

Hello, Luke. I’ve got a question related to the latest podcast. What is the word combination that appears from time to time and sounds like NO DEAL? What does leaving the EU ‘without a deal’ mean?

 

To explain the whole ‘no deal Brexit’ thing:
The EU is our largest trading zone. Most of our stuff is bought and sold there. It’s an extremely beneficial position to be able to trade freely, help create laws, be part of close collaboration, be a gateway to investment and so on. Leaving that union would mean cutting ties and access to the market without any defined terms in an agreement. The UK would end up paying extremely high export tariffs while low import tariffs would allow our market to become flooded. That’s the way it would be set out in WTO terms.
The UK would face losing access to its biggest marketplace while having to create new agreements with other markets from scratch. International trading agreements take years to put together and within the EU we are in a much more advantageous position for creating trade deals with other countries while working as a bloc.
But with no deal in place for things like trade, customs, tariffs, security and so on, the UK would be in a weaker position I think.
Leaving with no deal would also bring up the Northern Ireland problem because it would create a hard border on the island of Ireland. We are very aware from recent history how things can flare up badly in that region when there are border posts.
Leaving the EU with a deal is something that has been made possible due to several years of negotiating with the EU for a withdrawal agreement, which would mean a total withdrawal from the union – no MEPs or other officials taking part in lawmaking, not being subject to standard EU laws, but would also include details for things like access to the single market or the customs union. There is the shaky Northern Ireland backstop which would put northern Ireland somehow in the customs union, with a border in the sea between Britain and Ireland.
So, basically, leaving with a deal means leaving the legal framework of the EU, but making an agreement setting out terms for membership of the single market or customs union like the Norway model.
But leaving with no deal would mean having no agreements in place with our nearest and largest marketplace for both goods and services.

Weekend in London

Music

LEP Meetup

Questions from the Meetup

Pick a question, answer it, then say anything else you want for 2 to 3 minutes.

Which of these would you choose?

  • To be able to grow plants faster and better than anyone else
  • or to be able to fly

Which of these would you choose?

  • To be one of the best stage musicians
  • To be the world’s videogame champion

Which of these would you choose?

  • To be the strongest person in the world
  • To write the funniest play ever

What would you miss more if it ceased to exist?

  • Live concerts
  • Role playing games

Whom do you consider worse?

  • Those who get drunk to avoid dealing with their problems

Which of these would you choose?

  • To never need to use the toilet
  • To be the best football player in the world

Which of these would you choose?

  • To invent faster-than-light travel
  • To conclusively prove the existence or non-existence of god

What do you consider worse?

  • Destroying posters put up by rival political parties
  • Trolling a forum where people want to discuss their hobby

What would you miss more if it ceased to exist?

  • Bicycles
  • Television series

Which of these would you choose?

  • To be the richest person in the world
  • To write the best-selling novel of all time

Which of these would you choose?

  • To be able to read wifi signals with your mind
  • to discover something that extends life expectancy by one year

Which of these would you choose?

  • To age half as fast from now on
  • To need no food or drink

Whom do you consider worse?

  • Someone who offers a cigarette to a friend who has just quit smoking
  • Someone who knows a friend’s spouse is cheating on him but doesn’t say

Whom do you consider worse?

  • Someone who claims anything they don’t understand is stupid nonsense
  • Someone who steals a handful of coins from a blind pan-handler

Which of these would you choose?

  • To write the most beautiful song ever sung
  • To be the fastest runner in the world

Which of these would you choose?

  • To be able to read minds
  • To be able to comfort anyone sad

What would you miss more if it ceased to exist?

  • Hot showers and baths
  • Comic books

Which of these would you choose?

  • To be the best martial artist in the world
  • To have a pet unicorn

Which of these would you choose?

  • To be able to instantly sober up when you want
  • To be able to see any map you want in your mind’s eye

Which of these would you choose?

  • To be able to see through the eyes of any nearby animal
  • To be able to play any musical instrument perfectly

Meetups

What you can do, how you can organise them (set up an event, let me know about it and I’ll give you some publicity. Choose a place with space where you can perhaps get a drink, bring some board games or question points, speak and relax!) The LEP Meetup page on the website. Exchange ideas and contact details. Check in every now and then.

My daughter’s English

Photos and Videos from the LEP MeetUp

There’s a video as the bonus file in the app for this episode

 

Quick Hello / OPP / Living Through Comedy / Somewhere Else Dreamin’

Just a quick “hello” to let you know about some other things you could listen to this month, including my appearances on some other people’s podcasts.

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Transcript & Links

Hello folks, how are you doing? How’s your English coming along?

This is not a full episode, more of an update and a chance to tell you about some things you could listen to, specifically a couple of appearances I made on other people’s podcasts recently.

I’ve been preparing lots of premium episodes for this month. I’m halfway through series 13. Parts 1 and 2 of this series have been published and they deal with lots of expressions with prepositions, specifically prepositions of place and movement combined with little verbs like get. As usual there are tests and pronunciation drills. Parts 3 and 4 will arrive this week.

If you want to hear all the premium stuff, get the LEP App from the app store then go to teacherluke.co.uk/premium to sign up and get started, use your details to sign into the app to access the premium content. PDF worksheets are all available too.

Other People’s Podcasts

Now then, if you’re looking for stuff to listen to other than the podcast episodes in the archive and the premium content, here are a couple of things you could listen to in the meantime. Here are my recent appearances on other people’s podcasts.

Living Through Comedy – James’ new podcast

1. I was interviewed on my brother’s podcast. It’s called Living Through Comedy and it’s all about my time as a comedian, including how I got into stand up, what my influences were, my experience of developing my act and also some stories of good and bad gigs. There are several other episodes of Living Through Comedy too that you might like. Both feature conversations about comedy, doing stand up and life in general. You should be able to find Living Through Comedy on iTunes, but if you can’t you can listen to it on the page for this episode.

You could also visit www.livingthroughcomedy.libsyn.com and listen there, on a mobile.

So that’s nice. About an hour of conversation between James and me, on his new podcast.

Somewhere Else Dreamin – ExPat stories with Noman Hosni (video)

2. I was interviewed by Noman Hosni for Somewhere Else Dreamin’, his new YouTube series which is all about interviewing people (comedians usually) about their experiences as an ExPat – that means someone who is living in another country. I suppose it’s a nice way to say “immigrant”. And because I am an immigrant, living here in France and I’ve spent time in Japan too, Noman decided I would be a good person to interview.

Noman Hosni is a very funny professional stand up comedian here in France. I interviewed him on the podcast once. He is doing very well as a comedian in France, but he has decided to move to LA in order to pursue his career there. Before going he is working on his English and also finding out about people’s experiences of moving to different countries.

I love hanging out with Noman and in this interview I tell a few stories including the time I got sick in Japan (which I spoke about in a podcast a few years ago) and my experiences of English teaching and moving to France. Check it out!

It’s available on YouTube “somewhere else dreamin luke thompson” and embedded on the website here, but also it’s on Spotify in audio format. It’s a YouTube video and you’ll see me and Noman talking, but Spotify has the audio version.

I’m doing a lot of premium content this month, but I also have some free episodes in the pipeline including some more stuff about British comedy and an episode about Queen, the rock band, which has been requested many times by listeners, so it’s nice to finally be getting around to talking about Queen on the podcast after 600 episodes. There are still many more topics and things to talk about on this podcast.

A Letter from Luke – 9 Nov. 2018

No episodes for a little while – I’ve got limited internet access.

This is not an audio or video episode – it’s a letter from me to you.

Hello dear listeners,

If you’ve listened to episode 557 you’ll know that I’m currently moving flat, which also means that I’m moving my podcast headquarters out of the sky-pod and into a new sky-pod in our next flat. (What’s a sky-pod Luke? Keep reading and I’ll tell you) We’re saying goodbye to the terrace and the magnificent view, but hello to more space!

Most of the move is finished now, and in our new flat we are surrounded by boxes and bits of furniture.

There’s no internet installed in the new place and so I can’t upload any episodes at the moment.

That’s why Luke’s English Podcast is a bit quiet at the moment with no new episodes. When we have WIFI again, more episodes will return including new episodes of A Phrasal Verb a Day (in the App), a Premium episode (or two) about the English that my wife has learned from me over the years (featuring Mrs Thompson herself) and various other normal episodes of the podcast. I’ve got people to interview, stories to tell and English to teach you.

I was recently interviewed by an online magazine called “Our Paris Stories”. It’s all about people who have moved to Paris, their reasons for moving, the challenges of living in another country and so on. They also did a photo shoot in the sky-pod (now sadly empty after our departure). If you’d like to know some personal things about me, like why I moved to Paris, what my most challenging experiences here are, and what it’s like to record episodes of my podcast at home in the flat, check out the article. There are also some nice pics of the sky-pod and the terrace. If you’re wondering what a ‘sky-pod’ is, read the article – everything is explained. www.ourparisstories.com/luke-thompson/

So, as I wrote before, LEP will be back after a brief pause while we wait for our internet to be installed at home.

Then I’ll tell you some recent news, like a description of the new sky-pod and what it was like to meet Louis CK (infamous comedian) just the other night. Yep, he was in Paris doing a secret comedy gig and I managed to chat with him backstage after the show. It was a bit complex because although I really like Louis’ comedy, he is currently in trouble after being involved in a sex scandal. Is it possible to still enjoy his comedy even though he did some pretty despicable things to women and took advantage of his position in the comedy industry? In fact, Amber wrote an article in The Guardian about it. You can read it here www.theguardian.com/stage/2018/nov/08/louis-ck-paris-female-comic 

It’s complicated. I’ll talk to you about it soon.

But for now, I’ll just say (write) bye bye bye bye bye!

Luke

 

546. Death by Meteor

This episode is called Death By Meteor and it’s all about asteroids, space, science, maths, astrophysics and the end of the world! Transcript available.

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Transcript

I’m talking about asteroids and meteors and the possibility that one might strike the earth and what would happen in that situation, or perhaps what will happen in that situation because it is highly likely sooner or later, hopefully later.

There will be lots of English of course! Watch out for vocab on all those topics coming up in the episode, which I will be clarifying for you as we go, because I’m nice like that.
In fact, first of all, here’s a bit of vocab straight off the bat.

What’s the difference between an asteroid and a meteor, a comet and a shooting star?

Oxford dictionary en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/meteor

Asteroid = A small rocky body orbiting the sun. Large numbers of these, ranging enormously in size, are found between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter, though some have more eccentric orbits.

Meteor = A small body of matter from outer space that enters the earth’s atmosphere, becoming incandescent as a result of friction and appearing as a streak of light.

Shooting star = A small, rapidly moving meteor burning up on entering the earth’s atmosphere

Meteorite = A piece of rock or metal that has fallen to the earth’s surface from outer space as a meteor. Over 90 per cent of meteorites are of rock while the remainder consist wholly or partly of iron and nickel.

Comet = A celestial object consisting of a nucleus of ice and dust and, when near the sun, a ‘tail’ of gas and dust particles pointing away from the sun.

Originating in the remotest regions of the solar system, most comets follow regular eccentric orbits and appear in the inner solar system as periodic comets, some of which break up and can be the origin of annual meteor showers. They were formerly considered to be supernatural omens.

There’s a lot of talk about what’s going on here on earth relating to the political situation – lots of squabbles going on between people.

It looks like we’re facing a pretty troubled time, and maybe we’re going to spoil everything for ourselves by blowing each other to smithereens, crashing the economy or just ruining the lives of most ordinary people to the point that the world becomes a post-apocalyptic wasteland where the super-rich 0.1% live in protected biodomes in space or something.

Like T800 says in Terminator 2 “You are humans. It is within your nature to destroy yourselves”

However, perhaps before we manage to do that, we might in fact go the way of the dinosaurs, and end up being wiped out by environmental factors, and this includes the very real threat of climate change and how that can affect the careful balance of life on earth, or by some geological event like the eruption of a supervolcano or even a threat from space.

I’m not talking about aliens here. I’m talking about the possibility of the earth being struck by a meteor. And it really could happen within our lifetime. There’s something to look forward to.
This is a real threat to us and makes our petty disputes on earth seem pretty pointless and trivial.

Fairly large asteroids hit the earth on quite a regular basis. The latest one I can remember hearing about was in Russia on 15 February 2013 when an unknown object exploded high above Chelyabinsk, with 20–30 times the energy of the Hiroshima atomic bomb. Apparently it flew through the sky at 20 miles per second.

The light from the meteor was brighter than the Sun, visible up to 100 km (62 mi) away. It was observed over a wide area of the region and in neighbouring republics. Some eyewitnesses also felt intense heat from the fireball.

The danger from things like a collision with an asteroid is very real, although it might be possible to do something about it – and protect ourselves, if we manage to work together.
The following is from the PAN STARRS website – a site dedicated to observing the sky for large objects that could collide with earth. An important project!

Since it formed over 4.5 billion years ago, Earth has been hit many times by asteroids and comets whose orbits bring them into the inner solar system. These objects, collectively known as Near Earth Objects or NEOs, still pose a danger to Earth today. Depending on the size of the impacting object, such a collision can cause massive damage on local to global scales. There is no doubt that sometime in the future Earth will suffer another cosmic impact; the only question is “when?” There is strong scientific evidence that cosmic collisions have played a major role in the mass extinctions documented in Earth’s fossil record. That such cosmic collisions can still occur today was demonstrated graphically in 1994 when Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 broke apart and 21 fragments, some as large as 2 km in diameter, crashed into the atmosphere of Jupiter. If these fragments had hit Earth instead, we would have suffered global catastrophes of the kind that inspire science fiction movies.

project.pan-starrs.ifa.hawaii.edu/public/asteroid-threat/asteroid_threat.html

General threat – I did a bit of googling.

‘There’s an asteroid with our name on it’: Brian Cox warns a space rock could wipe out humanity (if robots don’t get there first)

  • Professor Cox says we recently had a ‘near-miss’ with a large asteroid
  • No one knows when next one could be. It ‘could be tomorrow,’ says Cox
  • Engineers are working to mitigate threat, but progress has been slow
  • As well as asteroids, threats to humanity include AI and climate change
  • ‘It’s human stupidity we need to worry about,’ claims Professor Cox
  • He says threats can be prevented through research and education

www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2740010/There-s-asteroid-Brian-Cox-warns-space-rock-wipe-humanity-robots-don-t-first.html

So, asteroids and the asteroid threat to earth!

There are tens of thousands of objects in space that have an orbit around the sun and their orbits cross the orbit of earth. Apparently it’s only a matter of time until there’s a collision. One of these objects, a large asteroid, could collide with the earth at a massive speed. This would cause huge earthquakes and tidal waves. It would also throw massive amounts of dust, gas, molten rock and ash very high into the atmosphere – enough to envelop the entire world in burning hot ash and lava, not to mention various noxious natural gasses and possibly dangerous chemicals from the asteroid itself. The burning ash and lava would probably destroy a lot of life on the surface, like a huge explosion. But also the resulting ash and dust would probably fill the sky above earth, blocking out the rays of the sun and basically turning the whole planet into a nuclear winter wasteland. Lovely!

As far as I know, this is pretty much what happened to the dinosaurs when an asteroid hit the earth near the Gulf of Mexico a very long time ago. Apparently there may also have been volcanic eruptions at around the same time (well, about 250,000 years before the asteroid) that had already filled the atmosphere with ash and gas, making life pretty difficult already (for 250,000 years!) and then as if that wasn’t enough, a huge space rock or two smacked into the earth and that was that. The majority of life on the planet was wiped out, but not all of it of course.

We know this because the evidence is written into the earth itself. All you need to do is explore the carbon records and you can actually see the layers of different types of matter which correspond to the different events occurring, even the remains of living things, the ash, the lava rock and so on – it’s all in layers in the ground. It’s all there.

Neil DeGrasse Tyson – Death by Meteor

Neil DeGrasse Tyson talks about the real possibility of us being struck by an asteroid that scientists have been watching very carefully.

DeGrasse Tyson is one of the world’s most famous astrophysicists. He is the director of the Hayden Planetarium in New York and is generally a very media-friendly science guy who is very entertaining on all manner of scientific subjects, especially space.

Listen to DeGrasse Tyson’s predictions with some questions beforehand

Questions
Why is the asteroid called Apophis?
How do we know where Apophis is going to go?
What’s going to happen in 2029?
What are the conditions for it hitting the earth the next time it arrives?
If it does hit the earth, what exactly will happen?

Script

Death by Meteor – Neil DeGrasse Tyson

There is an asteroid, discovered in December 2004, called Apophis. Named for [after] the Egyptian god of death and darkness. It was named only after its trajectory was identified to intersect that of Earth. Had that not been the case we would not have named it Apophis. Could name it like Tiffany or something or Bambi. You know, something not threatening.

This one was headed towards Earth. Apophis.

Alright once you discover an asteroid you’ve got to wait a little while to get enough of a segment of its orbit to calculate what the full orbit will be, to know if it will come in harm’s way. So we did that… we the community… I wasn’t the one do it. We got ‘peeps’ who do this, okay?

So, ‘peeps’ if you’re over 30 means people. Okay.

Forgive me but, saying you got “peeps”, it’s people. It’s actually a loving phrase.

Right. It’s not little yellow marshmallow. (I assume they have marshmallows in USA called Peeps) Do not write.

So we get the orbit. [It] turns out in the Year 2029, the month of April, the 13th of April, a Friday. Thanks. Apophis will come so close to Earth that it will dip below our orbiting communication satellites and it is the size of the Rose Bowl. It will be the largest, closest thing we have ever observed to come by earth. Now of course a much bigger asteroid took out the dinosaurs but we weren’t around at the time so this is in the era of observing the cosmos with technology. This will be the closest biggest thing we’ll ever see come by.

Now the orbit we now have for it is uncertain enough, because these things are hard to measure and hard to get an exact distance for. The orbit is uncertain enough so we cannot tell you exactly where that trajectory will be. We know it won’t hit earth. We know it will be closer than the orbiting satellites.

There is a range – a 600-mile zone we call it the keyhole. If the asteroid goes through the middle of that keyhole it will hit the earth, thirteen years later, it will hit the earth, 500 miles, sorry 500 kilometres due west of Santa Monica.

So it doesn’t matter where it goes through that keyhole.

Now that’s if it goes through the center. If it goes through other places within that keyhole then the contact point shifts further into the Pacific or closer towards North America, yes okay.

But if it goes through the center it hits the Pacific Ocean, plunges down into the Pacific to a depth of three miles, at which point it explodes, cavitating the Pacific in a hole it’s three miles wide, three miles deep that will send a tsunami wave outward from that location that’s 50 feet high, five stories.

Oceans don’t like having holes in them, so this three mile high wall does what? [An audience member says something] You say that so timidly sir. It collapses! It’s a three mile high wall of water! Thank you, fall back into the hole sloshing against itself with such ferocity that it rises high into the atmosphere and falls back down to the ocean cavitating the ocean again.

So now you make a cavity a second time. This cycle takes about 50 seconds. You can calculate it okay? So here comes the first tsunami and 50 seconds later comes another tsunami. So there you are on the beaches of Malibu. [A] tsunami comes in. Now, unlike the tsunami in Indonesia which was one wave that went deep into the shore, this first wave needs a supply of water to exist so that the next wave actually sucks back on it to create itself. So this tsunami will only go in about a quarter of a mile. [Someone in the audience makes a noise] We have the sound effects person there [in the] upper row there.

So it only goes into quarter mile before it gets sucked back out for the next wave to come. Here’s the problem. Whatever was there on the coastline is now brought back out to sea and the next tsunami brings it back to the shore. All the million dollar homes in Malibu, they get taken out to the sea and then back. But this time they’re in a slightly different shape, okay?

And so what happens is all of them… all the artificial stuff, all the houses, the factories, they get churned into this ablative force that sandblasts the entire west coast of North America clean. So, have a nice day!

I’m sorry I said 13 years after 2020 I misspoke it’s April 13 2029 and if it threads the keyhole it will hit Earth April 13th 2036. So it’s a it’s a seven year [period].

Repeat what he said.

Highlight some of the language

Jimmy Carr talks to Prof Brian Cox about asteroids. Brian talks about Apophis

07:35

(Wikipedia)
99942 Apophis (/əˈpɒfɪs/) is a near-Earth asteroid that caused a brief period of concern in December 2004 because initial observations indicated a probability of up to 2.7% that it would hit Earth on April 13, 2029. Additional observations provided improved predictions that eliminated the possibility of an impact on Earth or the Moon in 2029. However, until 2006, a possibility remained that during the 2029 close encounter with Earth, Apophis would pass through a gravitational keyhole, a small region no more than about 0.5 miles wide, or 0.8 km[9][10] that would set up a future impact exactly seven years later on April 13, 2036. As of 2014, the diameter of Apophis is estimated to be approximately 370 metres (1,210 ft).[3] Preliminary observations by Goldstone radar in January 2013 effectively ruled out the possibility of an Earth impact by Apophis in 2036. [12] By May 6, 2013 (April 15, 2013 observation arc), the probability of an impact on April 13, 2036 had been eliminated.[3] Using observations through February 26, 2014, the odds of an impact on April 12, 2068, as calculated by the JPL Sentry risk table are 1 in 150,000.[3] As of March 2018, there were seven asteroids with a more notable cumulative Palermo Technical Impact Hazard Scale than Apophis.[13] On average, one asteroid the size of Apophis (370 metres) can be expected to impact Earth about every 80,000 years.[14]

So, Apophis isn’t going to strike the earth in 2036, thank goodness, but there’s a slim chance that it will hit the earth in 2068, but we’ll all be dead by then so who cares? (will we?)

Still, the threat remains, doesn’t it? Every 80,000 years? I think we’re probably due one again.

What can we do? Call Bruce Willis?

How NASA would deal with the problem

www.indy100.com/article/nasa-apocalypse-earth-asteroid-armageddon-plan-7826791

So, when you think about all this it makes you realise or perhaps remember that despite all our petty troubles on earth, it could all be wiped out by an unexpected collision with an asteroid. Scientists can’t always see them coming.

For me this makes me think that I should just live every day and stop sometimes to just enjoy what I have and be grateful.

So, after listening to this, take a moment to think about all the good things in your life. Even if you’re not happy these days for whatever reason. Just think about any good thing you have and think about how grateful you are for it.

Perhaps call a friend or someone you care about and tell them how you feel and say thank you for something. It might just be a good way to appreciate all of this while it lasts.

LEP PREMIUM is now live – teacherluke.co.uk/premium

LEP PREMIUM announcement. www.teacherluke.co.uk/premium

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This is an announcement to let you know that LEP Premium is now ready to go.

If you want to superpower your English into the 9th dimension, then you can get started by signing up for LEP Premium. Let me tell you about it.

I’m about to upload some premium episodes into the app. They’ll also be available online if you don’t have the app – but the app is going to be the most convenient way to listen to these episodes in the normal way, when you’re out and about or when you’re at home studying.

There will be about 3 episodes coming (probably more in fact) – probably already there by now, a couple of videos and then more episodes + bonuses every month after that.

The way this works is that you’ll need to just create a profile online with my host at teacherluke.co.uk/premium, sign into the app with that profile (login and password) and you’ll get access to all the premium episodes I’ve uploaded and am going to upload. You can also log onto my premium page and get access there.

teacherluke.co.uk/premium to get started. Then Get Access to Premium Episodes. Complete the details and get your login codes and then bob’s your uncle. In the app the login is in the settings menu.

Make sure your version of the LEP app is updated too.

Check the PREMIUM category and that’s where you’ll find the episodes. There will be episodes coming regularly and I’ll also upload other things for premium subscribers, including pdfs, shorter episodes, phrasal verbs and videos. There will be quite a lot of content for the premium subscribers – in the app and online.

Yep – you will also have to pay for the premium episodes, but it will be a small amount – just a few dollars – like the price of a coffee, and finally this is a way for me to monetise my online work, and for you to support this whole project.

PREMIUM DEAL

  • All the usual episodes of LEP, sometimes with bonuses if you’re using the app, (obviously).
  • Minimum 2 premium episodes per month (MINIMUM – probably more) + various bonuses
  • Premium episodes will be primarily focused on teaching you language. Helping you to develop your vocabulary, grammar and pronunciation with a special interest in looking at how English really sounds vs how it is written. It’s all about decoding language, helping you realise how it really sounds as well as how it is structured.
  • Pdfs with transcripts, vocab lists and notes for each P episode – available in the app or downloadable online.
  • More phrasal verb episodes – New ones :)
  • Video versions of LEP Episodes sometimes (not every single episode, but when possible)
  • Invitations to live YouTube streaming events – e.g. live podcast recordings or online workshops & Q&A sessions – only for premium subscribers (arrange a date, tell them you’ll send the email 30 mins before the live stream, set up the live stream as unlisted, send the email with link, start)
  • All content in the app and online

So the podcast will continue as normal with normal episodes being free, but premium subscribers can access all this other stuff too.

Premium Episode content

Every premium episode will primarily be about teaching language to you. Grammar, vocab or pron.

Episodes will be either:

  • Language Reviews focusing on English which has come up naturally in normal episodes of LEP (e.g. unpacking the grammar, vocab or pron in conversations or monologues). Learn real English as it is spoken by my friends and guests.
  • Language Lessons focusing on grammar, vocab or pronunciation (similar to recent grammar lessons). I’ll pick useful, important or requested areas of language and analyse + explain them in proper detail.

You might think – what’s the difference between premium and normal?

Normal LEP episodes can be divided into 2 functions:

  • To give you listening practice. Exposure to plenty of spoken English is vital for developing proper English skills. Listen a lot and you learn language as a consequence. Sometimes I explain things as I go in order to help make things clear and because as a teacher for over 16 years, I’m always teaching you language, even if that’s not the primary aim of the episode. The primary aim of episodes like this is to explain a topic to you, to teach you about culture, tell you stories, make you laugh, interview people and generally encourage you to listen to English as it is spoken naturally. Language learning happens as a consequence, and you can push it further and more effectively by using the transcripts and notes that I publish free on my website.
  • To teach you language directly, rather than just giving you listening practice. I pick certain language points and explain them explicitly with definitions and made up examples. Or I pick out language that has come up in conversation and teach it back to you, helping you to notice features of natural speech. I’ve been teaching English for over 16 years. I’m well-qualified and experienced. I have a particular set of skills for teaching. I can use those skills to explain, define and demonstrate aspects of English directly to help you learn directly. This is about focusing on language from the bottom up.

Putting it simply, Type 1 = topic episodes. Type 2 = language episodes.

Most episodes deal with the first option, with a bit of the second option thrown in too.

E.g. the recent episodes with Andy or other conversations in which I explain the vocab and language afterwards.

Some episodes deal with the second option, with a bit of 1 thrown in.
E.g. language focused episodes, like the recent Grammar Questions, or ones about phrases with GET or plenty of episodes in the archive in which I teach idioms, verb tenses, connected speech, etc.

Type 2 episodes often take a long time to prepare. They also involve me using professional skills that at this point in my career should come with a fee!

Premium episodes will primarily be type 2 episodes.

I’ve decided that I need to try and monetise some of my podcast work.
I’ve been doing it for 9 years. This April was the 9 year anniversary of LEP.
Doing the podcast is my part-time job. I teach at the BC and I do my podcast.
I really want to continue doing it, I want to support your English, but I also need to support my family!
I think you understand.
I want the podcast to remain free, and that will happen. Normal episodes of LEP will still be free. There might be slightly less of them, but so be it. But they will be free.
If you want to support LEP after all these years you can by becoming a premium member and you’ll get a bunch of serious bonus content too.

Jack
I remember listening to the pink gorilla episode about a year ago and during the episode you said “OK, never mind”. Same thing happened again and when it happened the second time I thought : Why does Luke say “OK, never mind” why doesn’t he just say “OK” ? What does “never mind” mean? And that curiosity led me to google and that’s how I learned that word :) So with LEP Premium episodes you are essentially explaining the listeners all the language without them having to do any hard work :P they just have to listen to that episode everyday until it clicks.

 

Your vocabulary is going to get so good

This is a double whammy of just absorbing English through exposure and having things carefully pointed out and clarified, explained

How do teachers choose what English to teach you?

It’s based on general corpora of English. With this method the corpora is LEP. Learn the English you hear on the podcast.

So, not only will you be hearing a lot of vocabulary just coming up naturally in context in normal episodes (which is a really solid way to build awareness of English into your life steadily, bit by bit) but also you’ll regularly have things clarified and taught to you by me afterwards. I think it should be a powerful combination of natural exposure to English in full context and also good old fashioned language teaching from me – all based on the same language.

I think to get this full LEP experience you’ll need to be a premium subscriber.

It’ll also help you to understand and appreciate the normal episodes of the podcast that much more. For example, imagine hearing a conversation with Amber & Paul – you might enjoy it because of the fun vibe we have between us, but there’s bound to be loads of things you’ll miss. Then you can hear a premium episode which clarifies so much of what we said. You could then go back and listen to the original episode again, armed with so much more understanding – you’d understand much much more of it and as a result a lot of that language is going to stick with you.

It’s the ideal combination I reckon.

Also, your grammar is going to get more and more solid as I will make a point of highlighting features of grammar, as well as vocabulary as we go.

LEPP episodes won’t just be about explaining vocab and grammar you’ve heard. Some episodes will be lessons that just focus on important bits of language that you need to know anyway, even if they haven’t come up specifically in other episodes.

It’s all about language – raising awareness, raising your understanding, improving your accuracy so you avoid common errors, making you more confident with the language but not in an abstract way – in a way that connects it to how the language is actually used and has actually been used in conversations you’ve already heard on the podcast.

That’s the thinking behind LEP Premium. I hope you jump on for the ride.

Now, there are 3 premium episodes recorded and ready to go and they’ll be available to you almost immediately.

Remember, they’ll be in the LEP App in the premium category, and on the LEP Premium page at www.teacherluke.co.uk/premium

www.teacherluke.co.uk/premium

That’s where you’ll find the episodes and you’ll be able to get the pdfs in those places too.

Use the website teacherluke.co.uk/premium to set up your premium profile with a login code and password.

Then you can sign into the app and gain access to premium content there, and also sign in online and get episodes there, including any premium players on my website which will be locked unless you’re a subscriber.

Choose your payment plan. This is where you are going to help me out with a contribution each month.

Price

How much do you reckon you’d expect to pay for all this stuff? Think of it as a contribution towards helping the podcast.

$3.99 per month = Buy me a pint of beer in a pub
$19.99 every six months ($3.29 per month) Buy me a Big coffee – 15% discount
$34.99 per year ($2.89 per month) Buy me a Small coffee – 30% discount

Remember all the stuff you’ll be able to get:

  • Minimum 2 premium episodes per month (MINIMUM – probably more)
    Pdfs with transcripts, vocab lists and notes for each P episode – available in the app or downloadable online.
  • More phrasal verb episodes
  • Video versions of LEP Episodes (not every single episode, but when possible)
  • Invitations to live YouTube streaming events – e.g. live podcast recordings or online workshops & Q&A sessions
  • All content in the app and online

Any questions, let me know at luketeacher@hotmail.com

There will also be at least one page on the website where you can leave comments for premium content.

First thing, get your premium profile set up and get access to about 3 episodes which will be available in the next couple of days.

Then look forward to regular content coming in – language reviews of conversations with guests, grammar and pronunciation lessons – all the things you need to progress in your English with Luke’s English Podcast.

www.teacherluke.co.uk/premium to get started

In the app you sign in in the settings page.

I hope you’re as excited as me to really dig deep into British English and learn the same stuff that people actually say on a daily basis, rather than just some words on paper or in a book which look nothing like the way they sound when people speak.

teacherluke.co.uk/premium to get started

Speak to you again soon.

Bye

——

Please VOTE for LEP in the British Podcast Awards 2018 – Voting Ends on Thursday 17 May

[DOWNLOAD]

Help me build my pod-castle!

Vote here: www.britishpodcastawards.com/vote 

Click the link and search for “luke’s english podcast”

Thank you to everyone who’s already voted.

Fingers crossed! 🤞🤞🤞

🗳🇬🇧🏆👍🏅♥♥♥

Vocabulary in this Mini Episode

  • to be in with a chance (of doing something)
  • you need to achieve certain milestones
  • it shows that you’re getting somewhere, you’re making progress
  • it’s a flag you can wave or a banner you can show to people
  • you need flags you can fly from the top of the castle
  • to fly the flag of victory
  • I’m asking you to do me a favour in return for the free things I’ve been giving to you
  • “I can’t be bothered
  • “I think I’ll just not bother
  • it would mean the world to me
  • it’s up to you whether I actually get this or not
  • I’m hoping, praying, wondering whether or not it’s actually possible
  • listen to me begging!
  • that would be a nice birthday present, wouldn’t it?
  • get your skates on
  • don’t hang around
  • don’t put it off, it’s not the washing up!
  • you need to do it sooner rather than later
  • don’t leave it until the last minute
  • men, women and any other denomination you choose to respect
  • I didn’t video the second one because I’d run out of memory on my camera-thing
  • I was up for about an hour and a half at a very ungodly hour
  • she got a bit over-excited
  • I’ve got a dry, painful, sore throat and I’ve got a blocked-up nose
  • it’s raining and its a bit chilly

A New Episode is Now Available in the LEP App

Check out the new episode in the LEP App to learn some really useful prepositional phrases & have some common doubts answered, like “on time vs in time vs at the beginning vs in the beginning vs at the end vs in the end” & more.

[DOWNLOAD]

Transcript

Hello LEP listeners – you might be thinking – oh is this the new episode of the podcast? Well no, not exactly. There is a new episode available now, but it’s only available in the LEP App.

 iPhone/iPad – APPLE APP STORE |ANDROID – GOOGLE PLAY STORE 📱

It’s a language-focused episode all about prepositional phrases, which are really useful chunks of language that you can add to your sentences to make your English sound really natural and to add more detail and nuance to the things you say.

The episode includes explanations and examples of various phrases that might go at the start or end of a sentence. Here’s a selection:

  • At a loose end
  • At a loss
  • In mint condition
  • At loggerheads
  • In the beginning
  • At the beginning
  • At first glance
  • On closer inspection
  • In person
  • In theory
  • In practice
  • In reality
  • On paper
  • In time
  • On time
  • Just in time
  • In the nick of time
  • On balance
  • On second thoughts
  • On the one hand and On the other hand
  • At the end
  • In the end

And more… with explanations of the differences in meaning and use, funny examples, and all that sort of thing…

That is now available only in the LEP app, where you’ll see all the notes, a transcript and vocab lists in the show notes.

Yes – I am trying to encourage you to become an app user, but it’s not an evil plan or anything – this is just the sort of thing I have to do to get you to use my app and I’m just working on delivering more content via that platform, and that includes LEP Premium episodes which should arrive soon.

I want to give you an idea of what LEP Premium episodes will be like. That’s why I’ve uploaded this episode exclusively in the app.

LEP Premium hasn’t arrived yet, but when it does it will be available in the app, or online. Yes – LEP premium episodes will be available on a computer via a webpage, but to listen on your mobile you’ll need the app.

So, get the LEP App, check out this new app-only episode about prepositional phrases and the library of other app-only episodes which are in there too
Remember to use the categories on the side menu of the app – that’s where you can see LEP Episodes, App only episodes, videos, phrasal verb episodes, music and jingles and so on. Become an app user and then you’ll be ready to sign up for LEP Premium when it arrives, before too long.

By the way, if you’re concerned that I’m going to stop uploading normal LEP episodes – don’t worry. Normal LEP episodes will continue to be uploaded across all platforms – perhaps slightly less frequently – but the free podcast will continue.

However, to get absolutely all of my output from now on you should get the app.

Search the app store for Android or iOS for Luke’s English Podcast app. Download it free and Bob’s your uncle.

By the way there are no ads in my app or anything like that. It’s not one of those apps that’s going to bombard you with advertising. It’s free, I want it to be genuinely useful like everything I do, it’s supposed to be your home for LEP on your mobile and that’s that. It’s already getting good reviews on the Android and iOS platforms, which is great. So, join in and get the app today.

So, to sum up:
There’s a new free app-only episode available now about prepositional phrases.
LEP Premium is coming soon to the app and online.
Normal LEP episodes will continue with a new one coming out later this week.

That’s it for this message. You can now head over to the app and listen to the full episode that I’ve just uploaded there. It’s in the app-only episodes category.

Bye bye bye!

Luke

 iPhone/iPad – APPLE APP STORE |ANDROID – GOOGLE PLAY STORE 📱

[Website-only] I was on the “Becoming Maman” podcast with Amber Minogue & Sarah Donnelly

Dear email subscribers and website ninjas,

The other day I was interviewed on Amber & Sarah’s new podcast, called “Becoming Maman” and we talked about becoming a dad and raising bilingual children. You can listen to the interview here.

⬆️ Listen to my interview on Becoming Maman with Amber & Sarah ⬆️

Becoming Maman is a new podcast by Amber Minogue and Sarah Donnelly. It’s all about becoming a mum in France.

Becoming Maman – podcast page

Becoming Maman on iTunes

Becoming Maman – RSS feed

Becoming Maman – Facebook page

You know Amber from my podcast of course, and you might also remember Sarah Donnelly because she’s been featured in a few episodes as well.

Amber & Sarah have recently joined forces to work on a comedy project called Becoming Maman. It’s a comedy stage show and a podcast, and it’s all about their experiences of becoming a mother in France, where you’re not mum (UK) or mom (USA) but maman.

Maman is the French word for mum but really it’s far more complicated than that, and that’s exactly what Becoming Maman is all about – exploring the complex differences between parenting in France and parenting in the UK or USA, and then making it into comedy.

I saw the first performance of Becoming Maman on stage a couple of weeks ago and it was very funny indeed. Amber and Sarah work really well as a double-act and as I have recently become a parent here in France too, the show really struck a chord with me.

Apparently, being a maman involves quite a different set of challenges to being a mum or a mom and Amber & Sarah have managed to capture those challenges very well in the form of their comedy show which contains plenty of jokes, sketches and stories that made me laugh all the way through the performance.

On the Becoming Maman podcast they chat together about different aspects of being a maman and in this particular episode they chose to talk to me about my experiences of becoming a dad, theories about how children learn languages and also a quick test of my knowledge of French baby words.

You can find all the episodes of Becoming Maman on their podcast website, or on iTunes. Becoming Maman should also be available from all other good podcasting services or apps.

Here are those links again:

Becoming Maman – podcast page

Becoming Maman on iTunes

Becoming Maman – RSS feed

Becoming Maman – Facebook page

Check out the Facebook page for Becoming Maman, where you can see some short videos and get news about their next performances and upcoming episodes of the podcast.

In an upcoming episode of LEP you’ll hear me interviewing Amber & Sarah about Becoming Maman and all about how being a maman is really quite different to being a mum or mom. That episode is coming soon. Also, the subject of raising bilingual children is one which I intend to cover in more detail on LEP at some point.

But for now, I hope you enjoy listening to my interview on Amber & Sarah’s podcast. Thanks for reading! Speak to you soon – bye!!

Luke