The Story of America

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When the speaker pauses, answer the question:

(You can write your answers in the comments section at the bottom of the page)

England is a diverse country.
The north and the south are different.
London is in the south.
York is in the north.

York is in Yorkshire, which is in northern England.

New York is in America which is on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean.

Why do these two cities have similar names?

Why do these two cities which are on opposite sides of the Atlantic have similar names?

Why do these two cites which are on opposite sides of the Atlantic Ocean have virtually the same name?

What is the connection?
Why is it?
Why is it that their names are so similar?

………………………answer now……………………

The answer is that the United States used to be an English colony.
The English colonized North America.
The United States used to be an English colony.

Canada was also an English colony.
In what year did America separate from England?
Do you know? Do you know what year it was?
Do you know in which year it happened?
Which year was it?

………………………answer now……………………

The Declaration of Independence was in 1776.
The American War of Independence lasted from 1775 until 1783.
The French helped the Americans.
They fought against the English.
What was happening in your country in 1776?
Has your country ever been a colony and what was happening in your country in 1776?

………………………answer now……………………

Let’s get back to New York.
Let’s talk about New York.
New York is a very interesting place.
It is a very interesting city.
It is a world city.
Do you know what I mean by that?

………………………answer now……………………

There are people from everywhere in New York.
There are people from every country in the world in New York.
There are people from every other country on earth.
It is a mix.
It is a mixture.
It is a big mixture.
It is a melting pot.
New York is an international city.
New York is a world city.

How come New York is such a mixture?
How come it got like that?
How come the US is such a big melting pot?

………………………answer now……………………

After America became independent from England, many people went to America.
Why did people go to America?
Why did they go there?
Do you know?
Are you able to tell me?
Are you able to answer my question?
Why did all these people come to America?

………………………answer now……………………

Some people wanted a new beginning.
They wanted a new life.
They needed a fresh start.
Have you ever felt that you needed a fresh start?

………………………answer now……………………

Some people wanted to escape from persecution.
Some people were running away.
Have you ever had to leave your home to escape persecution?

………………………answer now……………………

So some people were following a dream and other people were running away from persecution.

There was another group of people too: slaves.
They were carried there as slaves.
They were forced to go to America.
Did you know that Afro-Americans are the descendants of slaves?

……………………..

There is one other group we should mention.
There is one group of people who were already there.
They were the native Americans.

They were the first Americans.
What do you know about them?

………………………answer now……………………

That was an interactive story. Did you answer the questions? Go back and listen again but do not read the text. Listen to the audio and answer the questions orally. Say your answers aloud.

After that you can read the notes and then do the speaking and listening again. Will reading improve your speaking and listening? Try it and find out!

You can find more interactive stories here at this link: interactive stories

NOTES on Different Types of Americans

America is a very diverse country. People from all the nations of the world have contributed to the creation of the United States of America.

African Americans

Many African Americans are the descendents of slaves. Are you interested in the history of slavery? There is a video about slavery in the US on Youtube. You can see it here:

Slavery ended in the US after the Civil War but racial segregation and racial tension remained a problem for a long time. Malcolm X talked about this:

And Martin Luther King talked about it, too:

You can read about African Americans at the wikipedia link on African Americans.

Native Americans

There were many different types of people in America at the time of European colonization. Look at this map of the different groups of language families in north America. It shows the diversity of the different cultures.

The native Americans were also called “American Indians”.

You can hear native Americans mentioned in this conversation. Listen and see what you can find out native Americans.

Dutch Americans

New York was called New Amsterdam before it was called New York. It was a Dutch colony before it was an English colony. A lot of Dutch people came to the United States. President Theodore Roosevelt was a Dutch American. Do you know anything about him? He was a very interesting man.

German Americans

German and Dutch are related languages. Germany was not a united country until the end of the 1800s. There were many different smaller Germanic nations. Some Germans came to America to escape religious persecution.


Italian Americans

Italy was also unified late in the 1800s. Before that it was broken up into different principalities and parts of empires. A lot of Italians came to America.

Jewish Americans

Jews came to America from many parts of Europe to escape persecution. Many of them stayed in New York. They significantly enlivened the cultural life of New York. They came from many nations in Europe. Henry Miller wrote about them.

Irish Americans

Many Irish came to America to escape the potato famine in the 1800’s. Do you know the cause of the potato famine? Do you know how to make mashed potatoes?

Scandinavian Americans

Scandinavia consists of Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Finland. There are many Scandinavian Americans in the northern part of the country. Do you know anything about Scandinavia?

Polish Americans

Polish, Czech, Russian and Ukrainian Americans speak Slavic languages. They speak related languages.

Russian Americans


Many Russians came to the US at different times.

Spanish Americans and Mexican Americans

Spanish Americans and Mexican Americans generally speak Spanish.

Chinese Americans

So far we have talked of European Americans and African Americans and Native Americans. Some Americans came to America from the west. Chinese Americans are from Asia.

Japanese Americans and Korean Americans

Japanese Americans also came from Asia and so did Korean Americans.

Do you think Asian Americans resemble Native Americans in appearance?
Do you think there is a connection?

New York City

Back to the History Page


You can find somebody from everywhere in New York City.


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38 Responses to “The Story of America”

Read below or add a comment...

  1. Zhanylbu says:

    Hello dear teacher! Due to you I knew the history,culture and tradition of America and I’m interested of it.Also, using your 7 rules I’ve some progress,esp.listening,I began understand diologs and songs and topics,without difficulties.I’m very,very glad.Bye-bye!!!!!!!!

  2. Meckly says:

    America is a melting pot? we know it is actually a salad bowl. Segregation still exists in the states. let’s face it.

  3. Mark White says:

    That is a good point!

  4. asim says:

    I found newyork city just like you sead its aworld city .

  5. Jim Roberts says:

    Mark,
    Thanks for your great lessons. This is the best yet. I always recommend your website to my students.
    Maybe the Wikipedia links would be more useful if they went to Wikipedia in Simple English.

  6. bidhe says:

    hi,
    some people are intresting culture of amareca,egland etc.
    thnx lots

  7. Henrique Alves says:

    Great, perfect way to help us to learn and improve our english!! congratilations

  8. Cibele says:

    Good evening.
    Believe it or not, one of my students just asked about it the other day. I provided him with brief lines about it, for he is a 5th grade elementary school student. So what’s left to tell you other than thank you very much. I liked the activity very much and I’ll certainly make most of it with my intermediate students.
    Cibele(Brazil)

  9. Athula Dissanayake says:

    What a great way to educate the world. I can’t gather enough words to thank you. I am getting the best use of your lessons.

  10. santhosh says:

    hi,

    This is very useful to know the history of america

  11. santhosh says:

    hi,

    This is very useful to know the history of america for me

  12. santhosh says:

    hi ,

    very useful to know the history of america for me….

  13. ALI says:

    hi,

    This is very useful to know the history of america for me
    Great, perfect way to help me to learn and improve my english!!ok

  14. milton says:

    Maestro.
    Gracias por su ayuda. Me parece genial. Lo felicito

  15. adelina says:

    The topic was very interesting, I´m pleasure to receive this material, I hope you are fine, I think you are one of the best teachers, and thank you so much for your help, because I am improving my english.

  16. Abeba G/tsadik says:

    Hi
    Thank you very much for sending me this very intersting thing. It helps me to improve my english languge. Hope you will send me more. God bless you.

  17. laila says:

    thank very much for the nice story , i realy ove history , thanx for doing your best for us all

  18. laila says:

    thank very much for the nice story , i realy ove history ,

  19. hafed says:

    thank a lot for the nice story

  20. Y Nguyen says:

    Thanks for your support, i hope that you will send more than lessons in the future. i am interested in them so much.

  21. Basma says:

    I really do not know how to thank you. Before hearing this text, I was interested in my country culture only , but now you give me the passion to discover and search for more information about the different cultures of different places in America. We need more lessons please.

  22. Natalia says:

    We need more stores like this.It is interesting
    and help us to improve our english.
    Thanks

  23. antonio joao huo says:

    my comment is very low because my side efferts is going very slowly end i have got intrnet very copple days .nice meet.you…

  24. thuy duong says:

    wow!wonderful.thank you very much.i really like it

  25. It’s so great to known such big information. I’ll use it in my class. thanks a lot

  26. fatma says:

    fatma
    Hi
    Thanks alot for sending me this useful and intersting programme. It helps me to improve my english languge. I hope you will send me more.
    I hope you happy life.
    Thanks
    fatma

  27. fatma says:

    fatma
    Hi
    Thanks alot for sending me this useful and intersting programme. It helps me to improve my english languge. I hope you will send me more.
    I hope you happy life.
    Thanks
    fatma

  28. Reza says:

    Thanks my teachers.Dual lesson English language and history are useful for me and others.I will always join your further lesson.

  29. Rani Mathew says:

    Thank you very much for the wonderful lesson. I think each country has these type of history.I need to learn some American history, it help me a lots.

  30. meriam says:

    Good day o you my greatest teacher and thank you very much for your fantastic lessons hope you can coopreat more to teach us . anyway you are gorgious , God bless you dear
    see you

  31. ramu says:

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    with regards
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  32. ramu says:

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  33. sigit says:

    there is a little bit of things that make me confused to get the point of english language…till now its just a 45% progress of me

  34. ERNANDES says:

    This material is so good to improve my english and learn about America history. I hope I will recive other material as this one. I,m so great. Thanks a lot.

  35. raquel says:

    I’ve never been to New York. I really like to go there. It mus be an amazing city, but too much expensive for me.
    Regards

  36. Naryo Boim says:

    Ok…. Thank you ….this material very good

  37. Ida Royana says:

    Thank you fot this website, I can learn about english language. This material help me for always know about All country.

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