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"clean up your act" = improve your behavior

"Hey. You'd better clean up your act, or Mom will throw you out of the house. You can't be rude to her like that."

"start off with a clean slate" = start things new again (children used to write on slates that could be erased)

"You had some problems here at home in the past, but I hope you can start off this year with clean slate. Everyone needs a new beginning from time to time."

More of Randall's Favorite Learning Resources

[ Quiz Script ]

Home Cleaning Service
1. Pre-Listening Exercises
2. Listening Exercises
3. Vocabulary
4. Post-Listening Exercises
5. Online Investigations

Level:Topic: Type:Speakers:Length:
difficultcleaning servicesconversationman - woman02:16

1. Pre-Listening Exercises [Top]
How clean is your house or apartment right now? Are there some areas of your place that get cleaned more often than others?

HELPFUL TIP: Cleaning your place a little each day is often the best way to keep your house under control.

2. Listening Exercises [Top]
Listen to the conversation and check your answers.

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[ What are these different audio choices? ]
[ Other Audio Option: Play Window Media ]

1. What does the woman see on the floor of the man's apartment?
A. soda bottles
B. hamburger wrappers
C. pizza boxes

2. What is causing the bad smell?
A. spoiled milk
B. rotten eggs
C. moldy cheese

3. The home cleaning service will take care of the man's _________.
A. clothes
B. windows
C. floors

4. The cleaning service will cost the man _________ an hour.
A. $13
B. $23
C. $30

5. The man's sister says that he ____________ because his place isn't clean.
A. will have to pay more rent
B. won't get married
C. doesn't have friends

Score =
Correct answers:

Listen to the conversation again as you read the Quiz Script.

3. Vocabulary Activities [Top]
Review the key vocabulary from the conversation: [ Why do these? ]

4. Post-Listening Exercises [Top]
For each item below, explain who in your house is responsible for cleaning these things and how often this person does it (once a day, two times a week, once a month, every day, almost never, etc.):

  • washing the dishes
  • cleaning the kitchen floors
  • straightening up the bedrooms
  • cleaning toilets and the shower
  • cleaning the windows
  • vacuuming the carpets
  • dusting the furniture
  • washing and drying the clothes

5. Online Investigations - [ What's This? ] [Top]
Use the Internet to find information about a house cleaning service, if possible, near where you live. Then, answer these questions:

  • What is the name of the company?
  • How long has the company been in business?
  • What cleaning services are included?
  • Do they bring their own cleaning supplies and cleaners?
  • What are the cleaning costs, and how are they determined?
  • What kind of cleaning plan or schedule is offered (e.g., they can come two days a week)?
  • What guarantees does the service provide on its work?
  • Is the company insured in case one of its workers gets injured on the job?
Now, share your feelings about this topic on Randall's blog HERE.

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