Idiom of the Week: Yes Man

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Meaning: Someone who agrees with everything their leader says or does.


Good leaders don’t surround themselves with a bunch of yes men.

I’m not a yes man – I’ll always tell you my real opinion.

You don’t really want advice, you just want a yes man!


Pop Quiz:

A yes man is…

A. good.

B. bad.

C. neither good nor bad.

To see the correct answer, click on “Continue reading”:

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Are Leprechauns Real?

From Wonderopolis:

On St. Patrick’s Day, you’re likely to see plenty of leprechauns. These mythical creatures are the small fairy folk of Irish legends. They’re traditionally portrayed as snappy dressers in green suits with hats and buckled shoes.

Leprechauns are small. Some pictures show them tiny enough to sit on your shoulder, while others claim they’re about the size of small children.

Leprechauns are known to be practical jokers who love to play tricks on humans. Even though they’re occasionally mischievous, they are intelligent creatures that are mostly harmless.

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Our Story, Your Story Revisited

Last week our students our students read their Your Story, Our Story submissions at the Tenement Museum. Here are some photos from the event:

Your Story, Our Story features objects that tell personal stories of American immigration and migration.

This national project uncovers the patterns that bind us, no matter where we came from or how long we’ve been here. Explore stories from across the country, upload the story of an object that carries meaning in your family, and join us in telling the story of American immigration and migration.

In collaboration with the Tenement Museum, Class E4 (taught by Allyn Wong) share their stories online.

Click here to read their stories!

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Idiom of the Week: In Hot Water

Meaning: In trouble, probably because you did something wrong.


He’s in hot water with his boss because he didn’t finish the report on time.

“You’re going to be in hot water if you don’t pick up your toys this instant!” said the angry mom.

It seems like I’m always in hot water because I often don’t think before I speak.


Pop Quiz:

What’s a good way to stay out of hot water with your teacher?

A. Always do your homework.

B. Always pay attention in class.

C. Never come to class late.

To see the correct answer, click on “Continue reading”:

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Life on the Lower East Side Revisited Again

Here’s another essay based on a photo by Jacob Riis from our New York Rising classes. These were written as part of their Life on the Lower East Side Project, in which students were asked to write a short essay from the viewpoint of someone in the photo.


by Vicky Qiu

I am an immigrant from Italy. I came here by ship. Now I live on Bayard Street in the tiny basement of a dirty tenement. Did you know that I live in a room with no windows and insufficient air?

I always wonder why this place is in such bad condition. I make my own bed with two barrels and a long piece of wood. I also have this dirty mattress that looks like it has never been washed, but that’s the best I could find.

Last night, when I was sleeping a few rats climbed into my bed. It was disgusting. When I need to use the toilet, I go outside because there is no toilet in my room. The toilet that I use is also the toilet that everybody in the tenement house uses. There is also no hot water where I live.

I work in a clothing factory. Sometimes I work overtime but the boss of the company doesn’t always pay me the amount that I worked overtime and I wonder why. I don’t want to complain because he might fire me.  Though I live in such a bad condition, I know that I live in a condition that is better than some other people in New York City have who sleep in a spot with more than twenty people in a room.

Click here to read more.

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Family Literacy Night

Last Thursday some of our University Settlement Adult Literacy Program students brought their family along for dinner, reading, hands-on activities, and a book giveaway featuring the beloved Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Bill Martin Jr. and Eric Carle. They had the opportunity to engage with their peers in an interactive and entertaining environment to support their continued growth as readers. Thanks to Families United for Learning and Literacy and Jacob A. Riis Neighborhood Settlement House for arranging and hosting this great event!

Here are some more photos:

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