Collaborative idea generation for ELT

This quote is taken from p181-182 of The Unbearable Lightness of Being in Aberystwyth by Malcolm Pryce.

‘I do like to keep a clean house, if that’s what you mean.’ She took the fiver. ‘It’s the little things like that that make the difference, isn’t it? A dirty keyhole is like grime on the cuffs, or not polishing the heels as well as the toes. A dead giveaway.’

‘That’s what I thought.’

‘Sometimes you can’t help but hear what goes on.’


‘Even when you’d really rather not. But what choice do you have? You can’t close your ears like you can close your eyes, can you?’

‘So what did they talk about?’

What would you do with this dialogue in your classroom? You can make any assumptions you like about the context it is used in. Post your ideas in the comments below. All of the formatting is copied from the original text.

The Wikipedia page about the author is here and the Amazon link to the book is here.

Click here to find out the idea behind this blog.

Comments on: "The Unbearable Lightness of Being in Aberystwyth" (2)

  1. The dialogue was most interesting, and then, upon investigating the wiki, I suddenly was taken back to last semester, and a deja vu of reading Kurt Vonnegut’s “Slaughterhouse Five.” He used his actual life experiences, but twisted it with sci-fi. 🙂 The book would be interesting to read.

  2. I’ll get the ball rolling with my ideas 😉
    You could start off by brainstorming ideas about a clean house and a dirty house, then see if students have the same standards as the speaker.
    I would also get students to draw pictures of the speakers based on what they were saying here, then compare them with each other.
    What would you do with this excerpt?

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