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English Conversation – Superstitions

Tuesday, July 9, 2013 @ 02:07 AM
posted by Jo

This is the preparation material for an English conversation lesson about superstitions.  Superstitions are irrational or unscientific beliefs about things that happen in daily life.  They cause us to act in strange ways or believe in unusual things. They have existed for thousands of years and even though many superstitions might seem silly to us today, they continue to influence our behaviour.  Superstitions vary from country to country and are usually related to things that are thought to bring us either good luck or bad luck.

Video about Superstitions

  •  The video describes some common superstitions in Russia. Do you have any similar superstitions in your country?
  • Do you know anything about the origins of some of the superstitions in your country?

Vocabulary

Nouns Adjectives Verb Expressions
Superstition

Charm

Talisman

Misfortune

Four-leaf clover

Old Wives’ Tale

Belief

Folklore

Jinx

Omen

Luck

Magic

Curse

Ritual

Superstitious

Gullible

Lucky

Magical

Cursed

Make a wish

Touch wood

Hope for the best

 

Good luck and Bad luck 

  • In many English speaking countries, the following actions are believed to lead to bad luck:
    • walking under a ladder
    • breaking a mirror
    • seeing a black cat
    • opening an umbrella indoors

What things are considered bad luck in your country?

  • In many English speaking countries, the following actions are believed to lead to good luck:
    • finding a four-leaf clover
    • seeing three butterflies together
    • putting a horseshoe above your door

What things are considered good luck in your country? 

Conversation Questions

  • Are you superstitious?
  • Do you believe in bad luck?
  • Do you believe in good luck?
  • Do you have any objects that you think bring you good luck?
  • Are there any superstitions that are common to your country or culture?
  • Have you ever been really lucky? What happened?
  • What do people do for good luck in your country?
  • What do people avoid doing that they think is unlucky?
  • Which numbers are lucky or unlucky in your country? Why?
  • Do you think that there is truth behind superstitions?
  • What numbers are considered to be lucky and unlucky in your country?
  • Do you have a lucky number?
  • Do you know any superstitions related to dreams?
  • Do you know any old wives’ tales?
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