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Linguapress Intermediate English
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A simple intermediate level English resource on  British life 

Shopping for Christmas

What word goes best with Christmas in modern English? 

For some people it is eating, for others it is presents, for some it is Jesus... but for a lot of people, Christmas means shopping, more than anything else.
christmas shopping
Christmas shopping
            Christmas will soon be here again. For Britain's shops, specially shops in cities, November and December are the busiest months of the year. In fact, some big shops do half their year's business in those two months.
    On Christmas Day, the shops are shut. But you can still do your shopping on Christmas Day if you want to shop on the Internet !  Internet shops never shut!

   Most people, however, spend their money before Christmas. "Christmas shopping" is different from ordinary shopping, and people like to do it differently. They go to different shops, more expensive shops very often. They don't just buy food from their supermarket and clothes from big department stores. They look round, they take time (if they can), and they choose.
    City shops do their best to attract them with exciting windows, and special offers. In the West End of London, shops spend thousands of pounds on lights, decorations, and special window displays. Some visitors come to London, just to see the lights and shop windows; but others come to shop in famous shops like Harrod's or Hamley's, Europe's biggest toy shop.
    For shop assistants, it is a frantic season . There is not much time to rest. Just time for a cup of coffee or tea perhaps, then back to work. It's a good season for pay! As Christmas gets nearer, shops stay open longer, sometimes until 10 p.m. That means more pay for the staff. It also means extra staff. Some people find a job, for a few weeks at least.
Christmas shopping
More Christmas shopping
    Then, at about 5 p.m. on Christmas Eve, it all stops. The shops are suddenly empty - just a few people running round, looking for last minute presents. In many shops, there is a small party, a bottle of wine and mince pies or something like that. And then it's over. The shop doors close, but the lights stay on. Out in the streets, which were so busy a few hours before, there is hardly anyone. Just a few people going home, or singing in the street.
    Christmas shopping is over again.... until next November.
    But for some shops, the doors will only stay closed for a day. After Christmas shopping, there is New Year shopping! The New Year sales used to start after January 1st. Now in some shops they start on the day after Christmas, and the crowds rush back for a few more days. Lots of things are cheaper now.
   



Word guide
WORD GUIDE
busy:
active - display: show - extra: more, supplementary - staff: employees - Christmas Eve: 24th December - mince pies: special Christmas tarts - shutters: shutters protect windows - hurry: go fast - sale: when shops sell things cheaper than usual
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Student Worksheet

Christmas shopping in England

Question forming : make up questions to which these are the answer

    1.    November and December
    2.    Yes, if you shop on the Internet.
    3.    They do so with exciting windows.
    4.    Thousands of pounds
    5.    Hamley's.
    6.    Sometimes not until 10 p.m.
    7.    Some just close for one day.
    8.    Because things are suddenly cheaper.


Prepositions :  replace the missing prepositions in this extract :
 
   Most people, however, spend their money _______  Christmas. "Christmas shopping" is different _____ ordinary shopping, and people like to do it differently. They go _____ different shops, more expensive shops very often. They don't just buy food _____ their supermarket and clothes ______ big department stores. They look _____, they take time (if they can), and they choose.
    City shops do their best to attract them ______ exciting windows, and special offers.    _______ the West End of London, shops spend thousands _____ pounds ______ lights, decorations, and special window displays. ......
    _______ shop assistants, it is a frantic season . There is not much time ____ rest. Just time _____ a cup of coffee or tea perhaps, then back _____ work. It's a good season ____ pay! As Christmas gets nearer, shops stay open longer, sometimes _____ 10 p.m. That means more pay ____ the staff. ....., _____  a few weeks at least.

This teaching resource is © copyright Linguapress 2000 - 2018.
Originally published in Horizon, the low-intermediate level English newsmagazine.
Republication on other websites or in print is not authorised  
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A Linguapress.com
simple-intermediate level EFL resource

Readability - Fairly easy. Flesch-Kincaid Grade level: 4 
Reading ease level:  83.5
CEF LEVEL :  B1 - intermediate
IELTS Level :  5

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Online English grammar
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Language and style 
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The short story of English

This resource is © copyright Linguapress 2000 - 2018.



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