Learn English with English, baby!

Join for FREE!

Social_nav_masthead_logged_in
 
Hanukkah

Hanukkah

Date: Dec 28 2007

Themes: Holidays, Party

Intro

1. Learn Vocabulary - Learn some new vocabulary before you start the lesson.

2. Read and Prepare - Read the introduction and prepare to hear the audio.

Did you notice your heating bill to be surprisingly low this month, or that your got exceptionally good mileage? Perhaps you experienced a small recreation of the miracle of Hanukkah.

When the Jews reclaimed the Temple of Jerusalem from the Syrians in the second century, they had enough oil to light the menorah, which was supposed to burn all night, every night, to keep it lit for one day. Yet, somehow, it burned for eight nights, which was how long it took to get more oil. A miracle!

The Jews celebrate this miracle with an eight-day holiday every winter during which one candle is lit on a menorah for each day of the celebration. In the 20th Century, North American Jews started exchanging presents to make Hanukkah a Jewish alternative to the Christmas gift-giving. Listen to Mason tell Devan about his Hanukkah.

Dialog

1. Listen and Read - Listen to the audio and read the dialog at the same time.

Log in to Listen

2. Study - Read the dialog again to see how the vocab words are used.

Devan

Devan

Mason

Mason

Devan:  So how was Hanukkah?

Mason:  It was pretty good! You know it came really early this year so uh…

Devan:  Is it different every year?

Mason:  Yeah, the Jewish calendar kind of shifts around so sometimes it starts like the 4th of December which I think is when it started this year, and sometimes it starts like on Christmas Day.

Devan:  Weird. I didn’t know that. So it’s eight days, right?

Mason:  Eight straight.

Devan:  I learned that from the Adam Sandler song.

Mason:  Most people did. There’s a love-hate relationship with that song for most of the Jews, I think, because it gave Hanukkah a pretty good public profile, put us out there.

Devan:  So what did you do? Did you spin a dreidel and light some candles?

Mason:  I did the menorah every night, that’s the candle holder, but I didn’t play any dreidel. It just totally snuck up on me. That’s kind of the problem with these roving holidays.

Devan:  And what do you do? Do you give presents like Christmas?

Mason:  I was actually talking with some friends about this. I was raised, my parents don’t get in a present frenzy. They got my sister and I presents but there was never a “I have to get everyone in the family presents.” The Christmastime shopping blitz that everyone goes on makes no sense to me.

Devan:  Oh, that’s interesting. Do you celebrate Christmas too or just Hanukkah?

Mason:  No. I hate those people who do both.

Devan:  Yeah.

Mason:  Pick one. Stand strong.

Devan:  But then you get double the celebration, double the fun.

Mason:  Eh.

 

Quizzes

Go Super to take Quiz Go Super!

 

Lesson MP3

Go Super to download full lesson MP3 Go Super!

Go to the TOEFL® page >

Discussion

Hanukkah was particularly early this year, so Mason didn’t have a lot of time to prepare. He didn’t play any dreidel, a game with a top that children play during Hanukkah, because he wasn’t very prepared for the holiday this year.

Mason’s immediate family exchanges gifts for Hanukkah, but he doesn’t exchange gifts with his extended family or his friends. The amount of Christmas shopping a lot of people do seems strange to him.

Most of what Devan knows about Hanukkah comes from a song by comedian Adam Sandler about the holiday. Mason says Jews tend to both like and dislike the song since it helped make Hanukkah more popular but also sort of makes fun of it.

Devan asks Mason if he celebrates Christmas also, and he says he thinks people ought to choose one holiday or the other.

Most cultures have a winter holiday. Did you celebrate a holiday this winter? Which do you think is better, a one-day, intense holiday like Christmas, or an eight-day, low-key holiday like Hanukkah?

 

Comments

Log in to Comment

qiuwucui

qiuwucui

China

VERY INTERESTING!

07:59 AM Dec 30 2007 |

jiangxiaoqin

China

  There are some new words which let me can not learn about it very well.In my opinion,it is good for many menber if they can be triditioned into chinese.

05:18 AM Dec 30 2007 |

wangxuehunan

China

i don't konw

God!!

 

05:10 AM Dec 30 2007 |

一一

China

good!!I like !!!

04:38 AM Dec 30 2007 |

jrojitas988

Costa Rica

good

 

10:38 PM Dec 29 2007 |

yonghuaqiu@126.com

China

there are so many words i don’t know what do them mean? if the words have explain .it’l pretty good…

09:46 PM Dec 29 2007 |

ianand

India

hi

 

 

05:48 PM Dec 29 2007 |

mahmoudjeexaa

Somalia

It’s good to know different Cultures in around the world. Our culture is Islam and we celebrate it well. Oh Jewish culture is bulshit i don’t like them they are enemy of the world.

03:23 PM Dec 29 2007 |

deepak.

India

hi

01:17 PM Dec 29 2007 |

malepu

India

yes I too like it.

06:48 AM Dec 29 2007 |

irahm

India

very nice

06:05 AM Dec 29 2007 |

std

Myanmar

I don't know about Hannukah.It's one of the Jew's religious.It's good.

02:42 AM Dec 29 2007 |

liweibin0305

China

it a good day

02:34 AM Dec 29 2007 |

chirs-yu

chirs-yu

China

i am so glad that there are so many people talking here.we can learn something ,aslo make fun,and get it!

01:24 AM Dec 29 2007 |

M.JEYADAVADOSSAR

India

VERY NICE CULTURE!

11:56 PM Dec 28 2007 |

Y.Ym

China

It's good,but it's too fast to me.

 

07:43 PM Dec 28 2007 |

Gantoo

Mongolia

its good. i like it

 

07:39 PM Dec 28 2007 |

mikezayar

Myanmar

That is internesting.At least we learn something.

05:55 PM Dec 28 2007 |

mpeer28

Israel

The Jews celebrate Hanuca mainly because of the victory of group of Jewish soldiers named Hasmonaim against the Greece who ruined the Holly Temple at Jerusalem. The story of the miracle of the oil is a folklor addition to the main story

04:42 PM Dec 28 2007 |

lamiaa fahmi

Egypt

great

03:30 PM Dec 28 2007 |

Likes (159):

See all >

Share this lesson:

  • Share on Facebook
  • Share on Bebo
  • Share on Myspace
  • Share on Twitter
  • Email this to a friend
  • Share on Sina

Post Ebaby! lessons on your blog:

Ebaby! Cast