Ahhh… November. A time to start bundling up in sweaters and scarves. A month to really kick off (start) the holiday season, to celebrate thankfulness, and come together with friends and family. This description may not fit for everyone reading the blog, you may be getting into your warmer months, or perhaps don’t celebrate Thanksgiving; however, continue with me on this journey anyway!
This month, #nostalgicnovember is an Instagram photo and video challenge that is inspired by travel. For some of us, we’ll be spending the next couple months at home with friends and family, so we will live vicariously through photos to fulfill our travel desires. THIS is exactly why my friends at Wanderful and I created this challenge.
Everyone can join, and everyone can get a different experience. You can learn and practice English (see below for details), connect with other learners and travelers, discover new places you want to visit, activities you want to do, things you want to eat, and experiences you didn’t know you wanted and needed! It’s different than most Instagram challenges you may have seen, for example this one, because you aren’t committed to a photo a day. ← This can be quite overwhelming, I know! The month is divided into 4 weeks, each with a different theme, so you can share 1 photo per week, or as many throughout the month as you have time for. HOWEVER, we will be featuring our favorites on our Instagram pages through the month, so the more you share the more chance you have of a feature. Plus, one lucky Instagrammer will will a great prize pack at the end! Who doesn’t love free stuff!? So have a quick peek (look) at our challenge and themes here, and continue reading below for the challenge details. English learners, this is a great opportunity to practice writing, learn vocabulary, as well as see AND use real English (from native speakers and other learners.)
How to participate
- Visit Instagram and start following me (www.instagram.com/jenesl760/) and don’t forget my friends, Wanderful (www.instagram.com/sheswanderful/)
- Read the week’s theme and question prompt, we are just starting WEEK 1, so you’re right on time!
- Share your favorite memories with us and start feeling nostalgic (feeling emotional [happy & sad] about positive past experiences/moments). Tell us about about it using the prompts.
- Don’t forget to tag us: @jenesl760 and @sheswanderful and use the hashtag #nostalgicnovember so we can see your pictures, and the other participators can too! Remember we will be choosing our favorites, and featuring them on our pages!
- Learn and practice English by reading and writing your own posts. Connect with others in the English Outside the Box and Wanderful community. Comment, like, share and inspire each other, isn’t that part of what social media is all about?
- Follow along all month for beautiful photos, inspiring captions, and maybe you will be the lucky winner of a prize pack at the end!
- One “Instagrammer” who was featured will be chosen at random to win the prize pack (gifts from English Outside the Box & Wanderful) at the end of the month. Winners will be notified by Dec 1.
How to improve your English
- Learn vocabulary: each week features a new theme with a (potential) new vocabulary word. The prompts encourage writing with adjectives and descriptive language, so you will definitely see new language from our accounts and the others participating.
- Improve writing: you’re encouraged to answer the question and theme prompts, so you’ll get to practice writing as you share your photos and videos with us. If you want my feedback on your language, just ask me- “@jenesl760, is this correct?” I’ll help you out!
- Practice reading: by participating in the challenge, and clicking on the hashtag, you can see and read other people’s posts. See how they write, and the language/structures they use to improve your own skills! A lot of participators are native English speakers, so it’s a great opportunity to see real, authentic English in use!
- Find language partners for speaking: everyone participating is a member of the English Outside the Box and Wanderful community, so it’s a place for friends! Don’t be shy to say hello and comment on the other posts. Perhaps someone is interested in English exchange, or a language exchange. Just ask! The worst they can say is, no. ♥
- Review grammar: each theme prompt has a question using different grammatical structures, especially the past tense! You can also review adjective clauses (scenery that took your breath away)
- Remember that prize pack?! Included are definitely things to help your language skills, so start sharing and get involved!
- Review the lesson for week 1 now….
Week 1: English Lesson
-ventures [plural noun]: a risky or daring journey → this can include “adventures” in travel, as well as other activities or projects in business that involve risk
synonyms: endeavor, journey, undertaking
-venture [verb]: to go somewhere that is unknown, dangerous, etc…
synonyms: take a chance, dare
-daring [adjective]: involving risk; willing to do something dangerous
synonyms: adventurous, bold, courageous, fearless
-unforgettable [adjective]: extremely special or important so that it is easily remembered, impossible to forget
synonyms: memorable, remarkable
Past Tense: because you are sharing a specific activity, that was done at a very specific past time, you must use the simple past tense when describing this image and activity (not the present perfect has/have + past participle)
*Remember: you must use the auxiliary “did” for negative statements and questions. When using “did” the main verb should be in the base form, for example: “I didn’t jump out of a plane because I was scared. Did you go skydiving?”
*Remember: there are many irregular verb forms in the past tense. Review some of them here.
Superlatives: these are adjectives that express the highest degree or most extreme quality of something, and we use them to talk about one thing that is in a group of something. For example, Paul has 2 brothers so he is 1 child (1 thing-person) in a group of 3. We would say that Paulo is the youngest (of the children).
*Remember: to make the superlative adjective we add “-est” to longer short words (shortest, biggest) or the word “most” to long words (the most intelligent, the most beautiful).
*Remember: we use superlatives to talk about 3 or more things, not 2. If we are talking about 2 things, then we use the comparative (“-er”, or “more”)