Chatterbox #178 – High school dances

Everywhere in North America, high school dances are big events for teenagers. There are, however, some interesting differences between dances in Canada and those in the United States. In this episode, Andrew and Suzanne will teach you about some of the cultural differences between high school experiences in the two countries. If you’ve ever watched American movies and wondered if high school is really like that in America, this is the episode for you!

Fun fact

In the United States, the average household spends almost $1000 USD on prom-related expenses. In Canada, the amount is about 25% lower, at $725 USD, but in the United Kingdom, the amount is significantly higher, at about $1500 USD.

Expressions included in the learning materials

  • Carnival
  • A mouthful
  • To show off
  • In a nutshell
  • One-up

For a complete transcript, click:

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Sample transcript

Suzanne:        And I love being back home. And one of my favourite things when I go back home in the fall is to go back to my high school for the homecoming game. And I get a hot chocolate or a spiced apple cider and stand in the bleachers and watch the football game.

Andrew:           Ooo.

Suzanne:        It’s a lot of fun.

Andrew:           OK, Suzanne, wait just one second. The homecoming game, what is the homecoming game?

Suzanne:        Well, Andrew, I’m glad you asked. The homecoming game is in the fall when the alumni or the graduates of the high school, the hometown high school, come back and visit for a weekend. And you get to see all the old friends and the old school, and watch the football game. It’s kind of like a little reunion in the fall.  And there’s a special game, and there’s also a dance on Saturday night. On Friday night, there is the football game. And then on Saturday night, there is a dance, and they even crown a king and queen of homecoming.

Andrew:           The homecoming king and the homecoming queen.

Suzanne:        Yes.

Andrew:           I’ve definitely seen that in the movies before.

Suzanne:        Yes, it’s very much like the movies. It’s totally like the movies.

Andrew:           Well, this is so interesting to me as a Canadian speaking to you, an American. Because at least in my high school in Canada, we didn’t have homecoming. This is something …

Suzanne:        OK.

Andrew:           That I’ve only experienced through the movies. So it’s really cool to hear about it from you, firsthand.

Suzanne:        Yeah. Well, high school dances in the US are pretty interesting.

Andrew:           Yeah, so let’s talk about it a bit today. Actually, our topic for this Chatterbox episode is high school dances. And so we’re just gonna have a natural conversation, chew the fat a little bit about this topic, high school dances. And, OK, let’s spend just a little bit more time on homecoming. Because I have a couple more questions for you, if you don’t mind.

Suzanne:        Sure.

Andrew:           So you mentioned that the school alumni come back and visit the school. They come home during the homecoming game.

Suzanne:        Mmhmm.

Andrew:           Now is this just recent graduates, or is this all the graduates that are still in the area? How far back does the alumni go?

Suzanne:        A lot of the times, there are mostly recent graduates because those are usually the people that are still around in the neighbourhood or in the area.

Andrew:           Sure.

Suzanne:        But if you are a graduate and you live there, or if you’re coming home just for the holidays, it can be 20 years, 30 years. I mean, it doesn’t matter. If you’ve graduated from there, and you’re around, come on by.


For a complete transcript, click:

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english PodcastAudio/Learning Materials: Culips