show episodes
 
Learn English the fun way—by listening to a podcast in English! Plain English is a program that you can understand! Join Jeff twice a week for an American English podcast about current events, such as American culture, travel, business, technology, politics and sports. The episodes also help you learn English vocabulary, idioms, phrasal verbs, English grammar and other expressions. Best of all, the show goes at the right speed for you—just a little bit slower than native speech. By listening ...
 
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show series
 
" The September 11 Museum has a wide-ranging collection of artifacts, including architectural remnants, recovered artifacts, and electronic media. The collection on display is powerful yet heavy, but it is a worthwhile spot to visit when in New York. Today’s lesson is the second part of the two-part lesson on the museum. Plus, learn what it means t…
 
" Last week, lesson 397 discussed what happened on September 11, 2001. In part 1 of 2 lessons, today covers the Ground Zero Museum and Memorial in New York that was built where the Twin Towers once stood. The museum tries to strike a balance between honoring the victims and telling the story of what happened there, and you’ll learn what “strike a b…
 
" September 11, 2001 is a day Americans will never forget. Americans that were alive at the time have moments that stuck with them, like where they were when it happened or bits and pieces from the 24/7 media coverage that followed. This lesson looks back on the tragedy and heroism of 9/11 and commemorates the day that changed America. Plus, learn …
 
" In the past, artists needed record labels and agents to promote their music and try to land radio spots. Now, with streaming services like Spotify and Deezer, artists can upload music to the platforms on their own. But this means the competition is higher than ever, and the power is in the hands of the streaming services. Plus, learn “light on.” …
 
" The new movie “Stillwater” stars Matt Damon and Camille Cottin. The movie is inspired by the real-life crime story about Amanda Knox, the American student who was convicted of murdering her roommate while studying abroad in Italy. Knox was not consulted about the new movie using her story, and she isn’t pleased. Plus, learn “inspired by.” -- At P…
 
" Lionel Messi is one of the greatest footballers of all time, and he’s spent his entire career thus far with FC Barcelona. He moved to Barcelona at age 13 to join the young programs associated with the club. Barcelona and Messi both wanted to stay together, but apparently it was financially impossible. Now, he’s off to play in Paris. Plus, learn “…
 
" Comics and cartoon drawings date back to the 1800s. Until recently, comics were typically published in newspapers or books and tell a story over time. But now, there are Webtoons: digital comics that are designed specifically to be read on a smartphone. Welcome to 21st century comics! Plus, learn “identify with.” -- At Plain English, we make Engl…
 
" Japan drew the short straw with hosting the 2020-turned-2021 Olympic Games. Under pressure from the International Olympic Committee, Japan hosted the most expensive and controversial Olympic Games to date. Now that the Games have officially wrapped up, this lesson takes a look at how the Tokyo Olympics panned out for Japan, the athletes, sponsors…
 
" Several American food brands have been around for over a century, including a coffee brand from 1850 and a condiment that dates all the way back to 1876. Some things, and recipes, never change. This lesson gives you a taste of the American diet – for better or for worse. Plus, learn “still around.” -- At Plain English, we make English lessons for…
 
" Several American food brands have been around for over a century, including a coffee brand from 1850 and a condiment that dates all the way back to 1876. Some things, and recipes, never change. This lesson gives you a taste of the American diet – for better or for worse. Plus, learn “still around.” -- At Plain English, we make English lessons for…
 
" “Judge Judy” is an American daytime courtroom television show that’s been airing for over 25 years. The popular show attracts 10 million American viewers each weekday afternoon. Judge Judy settles small disputes and is famous for her signature no-nonsense style. The show is ending next month, but Judge Judy’s legacy and many life lessons will liv…
 
" The Delta variant is rapidly spreading throughout the globe, and it’s causing a higher percentage of hospitalizations and serious cases than the original strains of COVID-19. Yet, some people with relatively easy access to vaccines are still hesitant to get jabbed. It’s a complex topic that is rooted in history and distrust. Plus, learn “pale in …
 
" Jürgen Conings was a Belgian soldier that stole military weapons and set off a massive 35-day manhunt in May. He was apparently radicalized by far-right online conspiracy theories. Conings was already on the Belgian watchlist, and there seem to have been some major oversights by the country’s military. Plus, learn “swept up in.” -- At Plain Engli…
 
" On July 11, Richard Branson traveled aboard his own Virgin Galactic rocket ship on the first private flight to space. He beat out his billionaire rivals: Jeff Bezos of Blue Origin and Elon Musk of SpaceX by just a few days. Branson hopes this is the start of commercial space travel becoming more of a reality. Plus, learn “on the way.” -- At Plain…
 
" For at least 100 years, kids have been learning in schools in the same format: a teacher and a class full of students with little technology. Then, Covid abruptly forced teachers and schoolchildren into virtual learning. This meant many disadvantaged students missed out on a big part of their education, but could some of the advantages of virtual…
 
" China’s Communist Party celebrated 100 years in power this month. From its humble beginnings in a house in Shanghai, to strict control over more than a billion people, this lesson walks through some of the ups and downs of the party over the past century. Plus, learn “take place.” -- At Plain English, we make English lessons for the modern world.…
 
" New York City is experimenting with ranked-choice voting, where you rank the candidates in order of your preference. Countries like Australia and Ireland have been doing this for a century, and it’s a way to pick a clear winner in an election. There are a lot of advantages to this style of voting, but there is one very, very big disadvantage. Plu…
 
" A fully occupied condominium building in Surfside, Florida tragically collapsed in the middle of the night. Rescue efforts ran into several complications, and many people are still unaccounted for. The building board was apparently warned of the structural issues back in 2018, and an investigation is looking into what triggered the collapse. Plus…
 
" When Britney Spears was 26, she had just gone through a series of personal meltdowns. As a result, her father was legally appointed as her financial and personal conservator, meaning he has full control of her life and finances. But thirteen years later, Britney – and a movement of her fans – are fighting to get her out of it. Plus, learn what it…
 
" The world is facing a semiconductor shortage. Semiconductor microchips are in everything nowadays: from laptops, to cars, and even some toothbrushes. Demand for these tiny chips was already on the rise, and then the pandemic supercharged demand. Countries are scrambling to build more capacity, but it will be years before new factories are up and …
 
" This spring, Law & Order introduced its latest installment in the franchise: “Law & Order: Organized Crime.” One of the Law & Order series is the longest-running live-action drama in American television history, with 22 seasons and counting. But the new show is different, and will make you want to tune in week-after-week. Plus, learn “land on.” -…
 
" After a year of pandemic life and working from home in comfortable pants, Gen Z has declared that skinny jeans should be gone for good. Some millennials are rejoicing about ditching the uncomfortable style, while others are defending their beloved skinny jeans (and side hair parts, while they’re at it). Plus, learn “break out.” -- At Plain Englis…
 
" The gig economy – the future of work – is here, and consumers love it. We can get a ride, order food, or even have our dogs walked with the tap of an app. But the gig economy relies on its workers to be independent contractors, and some recent court cases are challenging that model. Should Uber drivers be employees or contractors? Plus, learn wha…
 
" A new dinosaur was discovered in Australia, named the “Australotitan cooperensis,” or “Cooper” for short. The dinosaur was enormous, even for dinosaur standards. It was two stories tall and as long as a basketball court, making it one of the top 15 largest dinosaurs ever discovered. Plus, a dinosaur-sized coincidence and learn what “named after” …
 
" When we think of scams, we usually think of vulnerable elderly people falling for a classic email or phone scam. But recently, the fastest growing segment of victims is ages 20-29, which is largely because of a rise in sophisticated dating app scams. Plus, learn what it means to “raise a red flag.” -- At Plain English, we make English lessons for…
 
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