Christmas Scene 1

Ashlie and Stephen are getting ready for Christmas. They need to buy presents and decorate the tree, but there's still time for a bit of ice-skating...

Do the Preparation task first. Then watch the video. Next go to the Tasks and do the activities. If you need help, you can read the Transcript at any time.


Before you watch

Think about the following questions:

  • What do you know about British Christmas traditions?
  • What kinds of presents do people buy each other for Christmas?
  • What decorations do people put on a Christmas tree?

Now watch as Ashlie and Stephen do some last-minute shopping...


Ashlie: Oh hi, Stephen. You made it then!

Stephen: Hi, Ashlie, I thought we were going Christmas shopping, not ice-skating.

Ashlie: Oh, we are. But I saw the rink and ice-skating is so much fun. It’s almost as much fun as shopping!

Stephen: It’s Christmas Eve and this is the Tower of London Ice Rink. Ashlie and I are supposed to be doing some last-minute Christmas shopping.

Ashlie: We’re cooking dinner for the family this year. They’re coming to Stephen’s to give our mum a rest.

Stephen: And we’ve still got lots of presents to buy. So you shouldn’t be messing around on the ice.

Ashlie: Oh come on, Stephen. Come and have a go. What’s wrong with you? Look watch me - I can go backwards!

Stephen: Stop showing off. Alright, I’ll come on, but just for five minutes - no more.


Ashlie: Come on then. Take my hand. That’s it and we just go in a big circle… like this…

Stephen: It’s not as difficult as it looks. I think I’m better than you. It’s all about keeping your balance.

Ashlie: Stephen, you’re going in the wrong direction.

Ashlie: Stephen! Watch out!

Stephen: Oh, sorry!


Stephen: Oh, I love Christmas, Ash. It’s so exciting.

Ashlie: I know. All the presents, the wonderful food. I can’t wait.

Stephen: Wow, look at these. They’re great. Oh, I love these. Look, it’s snowing! Let’s get some Christmas decorations. These are so cool.

Ashlie: Well, maybe we could get something for the tree. What about some tinsel? I want the tree to look really tasteful and stylish. These are nice.

Stephen: Those are really boring. What we need is lots of different colours to make the tree look really beautiful.

Ashlie: Mmm, well, I’m not sure. I think the tree will look better with just a few decorations.

Stephen: No way! A Christmas tree is meant to be bright and colourful. Oh come on, Ash, let me choose some Christmas decorations.

Ashlie: Well, I suppose so. As long as you don’t get too much. Listen, I want to go and buy your present now, but it’s a secret. So I will see you later.

Stephen: Presents - of course. OK. Bye!

Ashlie: Bye!


Stephen: There... perfect!

Ashlie: Stephen! What have you done? What has happened to the Christmas tree?

Stephen: It looks so much better now, doesn’t it? All bright and Christmassy. It’s as big as the tree Mum and Dad had last year but it looks even better.

Ashlie: But I wanted the tree to be stylish and beautiful. Now it looks like a kid’s decorated it!

Stephen: Do you think we should add some more of these baubles?

Ashlie: No, I really don’t. Just don’t put anything else on the Christmas tree, OK? Come on, let’s hang up our stockings.

Stephen: OK. They look great. And look, I’ve put out some mince pies for when Father Christmas comes down the chimney and some carrots for the reindeer.

Ashlie: Ah, that is sweet of you. Hmm, mince pies! They do look good. I’m starving. I suppose Father Christmas won’t mind if I have one.

Stephen: Maybe one or two won't matter.

Task 1

Task 2

Task 3

Average: 2.9 (11 votes)

Submitted by May Thida Su on Tue, 23/03/2021 - 07:47

HELLO ! I have some questions . " all-inclusive holiday ", " budget holiday ", "laid-back holiday" what do they mean ? Please answer me Dear Team. I'll thank to you.

Hello May Thida Su,

An all-inclusive holiday is one where the price you pay includes everything. In other words, you don't have to pay for items (travel, your room, meals etc) separately.


A budget holiday is one which is not too expensive and suitable for people with a limited amount of money.


A laid-back holiday is one which is relaxed and stress-free.



The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by sumaya on Tue, 21/07/2020 - 13:15

hi i wish you can help me my problem is that i can not remember all the conversation in the video but i understand the the meaning of the video

Hello sumaya,

I'm not sure I remember everything from the video either! Do you mean that it's difficult for you to do one of the tasks? It's a good idea to watch the video several times in general, and especially if you find the tasks difficult to complete. You can also use the transcript if that's easier.

All the best,


The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Narina on Fri, 13/04/2018 - 19:19

Hi everybody. i need some help, How can i translate the expresssion ''women that drew looks on monday then couldn't draw the plow on monday'' in this sentence,. Ella was not strong person, coming from a family of small-boned, almost fragile country ''women that drew looks on monday then couldn't draw the plow on monday.''

Hello Narina,

I'm afraid we don't deal with translation on this site. I can explain the meaning of the phrase, however.

Women that drew looks describes women who attract attention in some way. From the context, I would guess that it refers to physical attractiveness.

...couldn't draw the plough on Monday tells us that they lacked the strength or the will to work in the fields on Monday. The implication, I would say, is that women who are attractive (perhaps slim and small) lack the strength for farm work.



The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Stephane on Thu, 08/03/2018 - 09:16

Good morning the Learn English Team, I don't understand why Stephen said Christmassy. What is "Christmassy" and what is the difference between Christmas and Christmassy ? Thanks a lot. Stéphane

Hello Stéphane,

'Christmassy' is an adjective derived from the noun 'Christmas' and means something like 'Christmas-like'. Stephen thinks his work on the tree has made it more beautiful and that the ambience feels more like Christmas because of it.

All the best,
The LearnEnglish Team