Wednesday, September 20, 2017

ELL vocabulary - home

Home, as a noun, means:

The place where a person or animal dwells.  This from the Oxford English Dictionary.  

That does not help us much without knowing that "to dwell" is a verb meaning "to live."  But you all naturally know what "home" means, don't you?  How is home different from "house"?

A house is a building for human habitation or living.  But a home doesn't have to be a building.  A home could be a house, or a condominium, or an apartment, or a set of stairs, or even a sheltered place beneath a tree.  Home doesn't need a building.  Home is just the place where you live.  Where you eat.  Where you sleep.

A house.  It could be a home, too.

There's a wonderful song by Howard Arlen called "Anyplace I Hang My Hat Is Home," which is the truth.  The lyrics go, in part, like this: 

There's a voice in the lonesome wind
Keeps a whispering roam
I'm going where a welcome mat is
No matter where that is
'Cause any place I hang my hat is home

Written by Harold Arlen, Johnny Mercer • Copyright © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc, S.A. Music)

What does that mean, "anyplace I hang my hat is home"?  Hint:  You have to know what it means to "hang [one's] hat."  Take a guess, and answer here:

Englishavocado's answer is that the speaker is saying that he makes his home wherever he happens to be for that moment, for that night.  Wherever he happens to put his hat down, after taking it off, automatically becomes his home.  So he's a "drifter," a "vagabond"--he has little or no sense of a permanent or fixed home.

Here's a link to Judy Garland singing the song on Youtube.  I'm listening to the song right now.  It's got that wonderful Howard Arlen melancholy.  (Melancholy means "sweet sadness.")

Where is your home?  Does it have an address?  With whom do you make your home?  Some people live all alone, some with close relatives, and some with lots of family members and friends.

Draw a picture of your home here:

(Your home)

That's all.  Just a short post for today.

#English vocabulary
#English learning
#lesson plans

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