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“Independence Day”



Pre-Listening Question

  1. Predict and Discuss: Before listening to the interview, ask students to predict what they think the discussion might be about based on the title “Independence Day.” Have a brief class discussion about their predictions and what they know about Independence Day celebrations.

  2. Vocabulary Brainstorm: Provide students with a list of keywords related to Independence Day celebrations such as “barbecue,” “parade,” “fireworks,” “picnic,” etc. Have students brainstorm and discuss the meanings of these words, their associations with Independence Day, and any personal experiences they have related to these activities.

  3. True or False Statements: Prepare a set of true or false statements related to the interview content. For example: a) Independence Day celebrations only take place in the United States. (False) b) Fireworks accidents are a common occurrence on Independence Day. (True) c) Aubrey enjoyed participating in the Independence Day Parade. (False) Have students read the statements and indicate whether they think each statement is true or false. Discuss their answers as a class.

  4. Group Discussion: Divide the class into small groups and assign each group a topic related to Independence Day celebrations mentioned in the interview (e.g., barbecues, fireworks, parades). In their groups, students discuss their experiences and opinions about the assigned topic, sharing stories, traditions, and personal preferences. Afterward, have a class discussion where each group presents their findings.

  5. Picture Analysis: Provide students with a selection of pictures representing different aspects of Independence Day celebrations such as fireworks displays, barbecues, parades, and family gatherings. In pairs or small groups, have students analyze the pictures, describing what they see and discussing the significance of each image in relation to Independence Day. Then, facilitate a class discussion where groups share their observations and interpretations.

Vocabulary and Expressions

Here are some words and expressions that appear in the video:

take place (verb): happen or occur
– Many fun events take place during the holiday season.

aerial (adjective): happening in the air
Aerial photography from planes can give us a better picture of what is happing on the ground.

terrifying (adjective): scary, very frightening
– For some people, watching fireworks can be terrifying.

Listening Comprehension Questions

Now, watch the interview and answer the comprehension questions. You can also turn on the automatically-generated captions for the video once you start it.


Randall: In this video, Aubrey, let’s talk about Independence Day, and Independence Day, well, it goes back to July 4th of 1776. But when you think about this particular day, what do people do and eat on this day?

Aubrey: Yeah. So barbecue. Very common. Um, it’s another situation in which, you know, other restaurants will have a slow day that day. Um, like, I used to work at a pizza place, and it was the slowest day of the year. But yeah. So barbecue. Hang out with your family. Light off some fireworks. It’s a very busy day at the emergency room.

Randall: Yeah, ’cause people are not being safe with fireworks.

Aubrey: Exactly.

Randall: Also, there are parades that, uh, take place. Did you ever participate in a parade for Independence Day?

Aubrey: Yeah, I was in marching band for a few years. At the Independence Day Parade was my least favorite because it was very long.

Randall: Okay. When we think about fireworks, often there are fireworks displays at different parks and so forth, but what do you remember in our family?

Aubrey: Yeah. So, you know, it depends on what time period we’re talking about because those aerial fireworks, the ones that shoot off, uh, were illegal for a while. So you got the sparklers and like, all little flashy things. And then they became legal, so they were going off all over the place and terrifying to dogs.

Randall: Yeah, I know. Our dogs were really scared of them. And in Utah, because it’s a desert, sometimes there are fire restrictions on where and when people can light them off because they certainly can ignite, you know, fires along the hills and mountains near our house.

Aubrey: I remember,uh, this last year especially, there were a lot of people talking on TikTok about, “Hey, please don’t burn down Utah!”

Randall: You have to be very careful. And again, a fun day to remember the independence of our nation, and we’re specifically talking about the United States. There are other countries that celebrate their own Independence Day, but we mentioned food, fireworks, parades. And thank you, Aubrey, for sharing your insights on this particular topic.

Discussion Questions


  1. What are some common activities people do on Independence Day?
  2. Why do people light fireworks on Independence Day?
  3. Have you ever attended a parade? How was your experience?


  1. In the interview, Aubrey mentioned that fireworks became legal in Utah. What impact did this have?
  2. According to the interview, why is Independence Day a busy day at the emergency room?
  3. How do you think the traditions and celebrations of Independence Day have changed over time?


  1. Discuss the potential risks and safety concerns associated with fireworks on Independence Day. What measures can be taken to ensure safe enjoyment?
  2. In the interview, Aubrey mentioned fire restrictions on fireworks in Utah. How do you think such restrictions help protect the environment and prevent accidents?
  3. Independence Day is often seen as a day of national pride and celebration. In your opinion, what does it mean to truly embrace and appreciate the independence of a nation?
ChatGPT was used collaboratively to prepare some of the discussion questions for this lesson.
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