Conversational English, Reading, Speaking, Upper-Intermediate English

Why is California always on fire?

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Hi Learners and Lovers,

This class is an adaptation from an article posted at If you want to read the full article, please click HERE

Let´s start this class with 2 questions:

What starts fires in California?

Can fires be good?

At the end of this lesson, you will be able to answer these questions and impress people, using the vocabulary your teacher will teach you.

Listening & Vocabulary

If you don´t know how to answer the questions above, you´re not alone. We´ll watch a video and find out. I will help you with the vocabulary so you can understand some of the expressions they use in the video.

Learn these words/expressions:


Creating a new record


A wrong use of a name

No end in sight

No one knows when something will finish


Very large


Small particles of things burning

Car tire rim

car tire rim


A crime. Intentionally setting fire to buildings, wildland areas etc.


After something burns, you are left with its ashes


Decomposing organic matter


Nationwide, 8.5 million acres, an area larger than Maryland, have burned this year to date. But California, once again, is taking much of the heat.

It will take some time for the ash to settle and to get an accurate tally of all of the devastation. But given that the number of acres burned is already double what burned last year, 2018 sure to break several records.

It’s important to keep in mind that wildfires are a normal phenomenon across many parts of the US (and the world). They’re essential for restoring nutrients to the soil, clearing out decay, and helping some plants reproduce.


Use the 2 questions from the beginning of the class, and record a short presentation.

As always, if you help us by posting your assignment, you´ll get free feedback from a native speaker.


Summarize the reading you did above. Write 2 paragraphs at least.


Ok, guys.

This is the end of today´s class. Did you enjoy this lesson? Do you have doubts or suggestions? Go ahead and write us a comment (you must log in to your Facebook account to do so) in the box below.

Until next time.

Teacher Leo


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