Wednesday, 3 June 2020

Welcome back!

Hello again! I haven't been on here for a while. Like many blogs this one has fallen into the abyss of non-used blogs.

What have you been up to? I hope you are all well and the coronavirus, lockdown and social distancing haven't been too drastic for you.

What have I been up to? Well, I've been working on a new Young English Schools Youtube Channel which you can watch and subscribe to here:

I've also begun teaching online English lessons using Zoom which is actually pretty great. Here are my current lesson prices:

Feel free to contact me by calling/texting 0789 9718 775 or emailing me at to set up an absolutely free demo lesson and level check :)

Looking forward to hearing from you soon!

Monday, 21 May 2018

Chapter 8 : The Two Men

Fry Words 175 – 200 : try   kind    hand  picture    again    change    off    play    spell     air    away    animal    house    point    page    letter    mother    answer    found    study    still    learn    should    America    world

The place looked like an animal house. Bill wished he could wave his hand and cast a magic spell to change everything back the way it was.

On the floor in his study among the broken glass and destroyed circuit boards, Bill found a three page letter from his mother that he'd forgotten to answer. He held in his shaking hand a picture of his father that his mother had sent with the letter. His father was in his thirties, before Bill had been born, and was outside the house, standing still looking away off into the distance. The letter said that his mother thought Bill should stay at home on Earth and study and learn about farming in America – not go off to another world. But he had been too stubborn to change.

Bill folded up the letter, put it with the photo in his back pocket and stood with his hands on his hips looking round at his laboratory. He didn't know what to do.

Maybe his mother had been right.

Suddenly, with a hiss a hot laser blast streaked past him and hit the wall above his head. He jerked round in shock to see two men outside the door coming towards him through the smoke with their blasters raised. With a cry Bill dived behind a counter and crawled on hands and knees to the other end of the lab as more laser blasts caused broken glass and sparks to rain down on his back and shoulders, burning his neck, and cutting his hands.

Who are these men? He thought. What are they looking for? Why are they trying to kill me?

Too many questions and not enough answers.

Copyright © Chris Young 2018
Photo Credit :

Thursday, 17 May 2018

Chapter 7 : The Indian Boy

Fry Words 201 – 225 : every   near   add   food   between   own below   country   plant – planted   last   school   father   keep   tree never   start   city   earth   eye   light   think – thought   head   under story   see - saw

As Bill walked back to his laboratory, something made him think about his father. They used to wake up early every morning when the light was cool and clear, and plant seeds under the earth together on the farm in the country to grow their own food, and sometimes they planted trees near the house, between the fields. Then his father would work all day while Bill was at school in the city. He started school at 8am every day and studied until 8pm at night, so he never saw his father again until bedtime, when his eyes were closing and he put his heavy head down on the pillow and his father read him a story.

Bill used to climb under the covers in his warm safe bed and he thought, “I hope this will keep going and last forever.”

When Bill arrived at his laboratory he found that his door was a little open.

He stopped. He had added a lock two weeks ago, and it now lay broken on the floor below the handle.

He pushed the door gently with his finger and it squeaked open.

Inside, darkness.

A laboratory

There was no sound, except for his own breathing and the beating of his heart.

What's going on?” he thought. Suddenly he noticed a small figure move in the darkness behind a unit, which was covered in broken computers and smashed monitors.

Oh,” Bill thought. “All my equipment! It's been destroyed!”

Just then the figure ran at him, trying to squeeze past and through the door, but Bill caught him by the scruff of his neck.

It was an Indian boy! He stared up at Bill snarling and spitting like a wild animal, before grabbing the piece of paper from his hand and kicking him in the leg. “Ow!” Bill shouted. Then he twisted from Bill's grip and ran off.

Bill watched him go. “Wait!” he called, but the boy disappeared into the dark trees.

With a sigh Bill entered his laboratory and switched on the light. Everything had been destroyed. His computers, his hard drives, his files. All his life's work – gone!

© Chris Young 2018

Monday, 14 May 2018

Chapter 6 : The Indian Girl

Fry Words 226 to 300 : left   might   something   paper   together group   run - ran   important   children   side   feet   mile   night   walk white    sea   begin – began   four   state   book   without   second   late   miss   idea   face   watch   Indian   above   girl   sometimes   mountain   cut   young   talk   soon   list   song   leave -left   family   music   colour

Bill walked to the town square through the failing light and when he arrived it was completely dark. There was a group of four children there, who had come down from the mountain. One was a young girl carrying a book. Her face was white in a state of fear and she made a high pitched sound. 

Seeing the girl's Indian face, Bill got an idea. He couldn't communicate with the mountain people. Sometimes it's too soon to talk with words, but you can use music. And colour. 

It's okay,” he said as he watched them run back to their families without a second look. “I'm not going to harm you.” He didn't want them to leave but it was too late. He had missed his chance.

While he was walking back to the six sponge balls, he thought of ways to communicate through colour and music. It was important not to make a mistake, and who knew if colours and music had the same effects in their language?

But first it was important to find something that might change colour and also produce music. Like what? A singing chameleon? No. He needed his computer. He would put a song list together on paper first. 

A chameleon

Then he saw something white moving in the dark and he began to run after it. It was a piece of paper from the Indian girl's book.

In the light of the moon he could just see what was on it. Under some writing which he couldn't read there was a picture of the six black balls in the town square with the four children around it in a group. At the left side was a taller figure – a man – with a book at his feet. Above them, white lights cut through the night, and in the background, miles behind them, the sea, and on its white waves, a ship, exploding in red, fiery sparks.

© Chris Young 2018
Image credit :

Thursday, 26 April 2018

Chapter 5: Talking to Animals

(Fry Words 301-325:   being   it's   your   stand – stood   sun   questions   fish   area   mark   dog   horse   birds   problem   complete   room   know – knew   since   ever   piece   tell - told   usually   didn't   friends   easy - easily   heard) 

As the sun set on the burning wreck Bill sat down. There was nothing he could do. He was lucky to be alive, but how many people on that ship had died? Had it been an accident? Or was someone trying to kill him?

Too many questions. But he knew sitting out here looking at a burning ship wouldn't solve his problem. Which was communication, as usual.

Ever since he was a young man he'd never had many friends. He didn't make friends easily. His mother usually told him to go out and talk to people, but he liked to just stay in his room and think. He liked being in his room. His parents had been farmers and he'd preferred to talk to his animals – he liked animals much better than humans.

He remembered their red horse, called Flame, whose job was to plough the fields but could run like the wind through the woods. They also had a black dog called Coal, that Bill had loved to play with for hours in the fields and out on long walks, whatever the weather. They'd had other animals as well – fish, birds – that for fun Bill had sometimes asked questions to, and usually he never heard them answer, but sometimes - just sometimes - he thought he did.

“It's your problem,” he remembers a bird singing to him once. 

“What's my problem?” he asked.

But they just kept repeating, “It's your problem.”

He didn't find it easy to understand the fish, however, as they were usually under water. He wondered what happened to Flame and Coal.

And now this was his problem. How to communicate with the black sponge balls. Where had they come from? Nobody knew. One morning five years ago the people of the town had woken up and they had been there ever since. A complete mystery. A piece of a puzzle.

It was almost dark. It was time to stand up and go back to the town square. Bill was hungry, but he had to mark out an area around the sponge balls to stop other people touching them. He decided to try one more time tonight and then go to bed.

© Chris Young 2018

Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Chapter 4 : Bill's Ship Sails

Fry Words 326 to 350 : order   red   door   sure   become   top   tip   across   today   during   short better   best   however   low   hours   black   products   happen - happened   whole   measure   remember   early   waves   reach - reached

Bill had become better at remembering what happened. He sat on the beach where the waves almost reached his toes. He had been there for many short hours today, since early morning, remembering the whole conversation between himself, the farmer and the English Scientist. They had told him he was sure to be the best person to learn how to speak to the black sponge balls, to ask for their help, if possible, and then catch a ship across the sea to the island.

However, that had not happened. During his time trying to communicate with the six black sponge balls in the town square, he had learnt nothing. He had measured them and found them to be one hundred centimetres across, from top to bottom. And when he reached up and touched them they became red and warm. But that was all.

So now he was sitting here on the beach, watching the waves and feeling not a whole lot better.

He looked across the sea to the island and saw the ship he should have gotten on.

Bill knew he had to do more tests on the sponge balls, but he had to order some products to help him. He would order them tomorrow.

The ship had stopped, and black smoke was now coming from its engines.

Bill stood up in surprise and shielded his eyes from the sun with his hand to try to get a better look.

Thursday, 19 April 2018

Chapter 3 : The Plan

Words used : (Fry 351-375) : listen  wind    rock   space   covered fast   several   hold – held   himself   towards   five   step – stepped morning   pass – passed   vowel   true   hundred   against   pattern numeral   table   north   slow – slowly   money   map   door   waves low   units   six   sponge    balls   English   scientist   course   listen – listened – listening 

Check these words in a dictionary and write down the meanings:

strike (v)

genetic (adj)

grotesque (adj)

be up to someone

The Plan

The farmer slowly pulled out something from his cloak and placed it on the table. It was money – a lot of money – and a map. Along the top were the numerals from one to five, and up the side were the vowels A,E,I,O,U, to form a grid pattern. Bill and the English Scientist looked at the map. In square A-three was the town to the north, where they had come from in the morning. In square O-five was the location of the farm they were at now, three hundred units away.

Outside the singing voice had stopped. Bill stood up and put his ear against the door to listen but heard nothing but the wind.

“So what is your course of action, old man?” asked the English Scientist. Bill turned round and took a step towards the table. “We are listening.”

The old man with the scar leaned heavily against the table and waited until several seconds had passed. Finally he said, “We, the famers, will strike.” Bill and the English scientist looked at each other. “The king and his armies will have no food. Then you and the English scientists will take this money and map and prepare an attack on the night of the next full moon.”

“You are crazy,” said the English scientist. “We are scientists, not soldiers. We cannot fight against an army, even a hungry one.”

Then the old man smiled, his scar twisting grotesquely. “It's true, you cannot. You must use the science of the six sponge balls to fight,” he said. “And you must win.”

There was silence in the room, and the wind howled outside.

Suddenly the door opened and a young woman came in. She was beautiful and shy, and had the same scar on her face as the old man.

Bill and the English scientist looked at her in surprise.

“It's genetic,” said the old man, as the young woman stepped towards him to be held.

That evening we took off fast and flew low over the waves back to the town in the north.

Alone in a space in the town square Bill sat and watched the red light of the sunset play against the black sponge balls, and held himself. The map and the money were in his pocket. 

It was up to him.

Reading/Writing tasks :

1. What is the old man's plan?

2. Why does the English scientist think this will not work?

3. How do you think Bill feels at the end?

Choose five difficult new words and write an example sentence for each one below:





© Chris Young 2018