GED Connection: Crossroads Cafe

Return to Adult Learners - Return to GED Connection

Crossroads Café is a captivating episodic series which, combined with closely correlated print materials, offers a complete program designed to teach English to speakers of other languages. The series engagingly depicts the lives of six characters involved with a small neighborhood restaurant. Their backgrounds, challenges and struggles are typical of many ESL/ESOL learners. Two video sidebars appear in each episode: Culture Clips, a documentary-style segment which focuses on cultural issues portrayed in the story; and Word Play, a colorful animated segment which demonstrates the appropriate language to use when communicating specific types of information.

PROGRAM DESCRIPTIONS

Part I
101) Opening Day
Victor Brashov's new restaurant is about to open, but still doesn't have a name or any employees. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Giving and getting personal information; The "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Finding and interviewing for a job.

102) Growing Pains
Henry's plans to work at the cafe unravel; a demanding health and safety inspector visits the cafe. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Making introductions "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Immigrant families in a new culture.

103) Worlds Apart
When her boyfriend arrives from Mexico, Rosa must make a difficult decision; Brashov grapples with insomnia. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Talking about wants "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: The US - Land of Immigrants.

104) Who's the Boss
Jamal unexpectedly runs into two old friends who think he's the owner of the cafe. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Making apologies "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Strategies for job change.

105) Lost and Found
When Katherine's son has behavior problems in school, he gets help from an unexpected source; Jess and Carol's house is burglarized. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Telling someone to do something. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Neighbors working to prevent crime.

106) Time is Money
Brashov brings in an over-eager efficiency expert; Rosa struggles in her night school class. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Making suggestions. The Cultural Clip emphasizes: The importance of time.

107) Fish Out of Water
Brashov's brother arrives from Romania only to find that life in the United States is not what he expected. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Describing experiences. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Adjusting to a new culture.

108) Family Matters
Katherine takes a second job to make ends meet; Rosa teaches Henry to dance. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Making offers. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Single parenting.

109) Rush to Judgement
Jam is a suspect in a bank robbery; Henry's grandparents get lost in the city. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Describing people. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: The role of police.

110) Let the Buyer Beware
Brashov falls for a woman who promises to improve the café's business; Katherine reluctantly goes on a date. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Giving Compliments. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Consumer scams.

111) No Vacancy
Rosa runs into an unexpected roadblock when she tries to move to a new apartment; Henry tries his hand at journalism. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Asking for clarification. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Discrimination.

112) Turning Points
The cafe is vandalized; Rosa learns to drive. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Talking about possibility. The Cultural Clip emphasizes: Gangs: problems and solutions.

113) Trading Places
The cafe employees switch jobs for a day with mixed results; Jess and Carol have problems at home. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Talking about ability. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Couples and the roles they choose.

Part II
114) Life Goes On
The cafe employees try to cope while Brashov is in the hospital. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Describing things. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: The hospital environment.

115) Breaking Away
Henry and his caucasian girlfriend are forced to deal with reactions from their parents; a laundromat opens next door to the cafe. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Talking about likes and dislikes. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Intercultural relationships.

116) The Bottom Line
Brashov tries to attract more business so he can impress the bank and qualify for a loan.

117) United We Stand
When her apartment landlord refuses to make repairs, Rosa and the other tenants fight back; Henry makes a documentary for his journalism class. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Reporting information. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Aging in the US.

118) Opportunity Knocks
Jamal is offered an engineering job; Brashov buys a jukebox for the cafe. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Comparing things. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Worker protection and benefits.

119) The People's Choice
Jess runs for city council; Jamal's cousin visits from Egypt and falls in love with Rosa. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Making promises. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Elections and the government.

120) Outside Looking In
Rosa enters high society; the cafe landlord's son disrupts work at the cafe. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Giving advise. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Raising children.

121) Walls and Bridges
Rosa comes to the aid of a student whose father wants her to quit school; Brashov struggles with his citizenship exam. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Asking for and offering help. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: The citizenship process.

122) Helping Hands
The cafe employees help a homeless man get on his feet; Jamal and his family take a trip. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Asking for and giving permission. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Financial pressures.

123) The Gift
Brashov is convinced everyone has forgotten his birthday; someone from Brashov's past pays an unexpected visit. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Making invitations. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Taxes.

124) All's Well That Ends Well
Katherine's wedding day is a near disaster; Henry is caught in a snow storm. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Talking about future. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Wedding customs.

125) Comings and Goings
Henry pursues his plans to become a rock star; Katherine's going - away party takes an unexpected turn. The Word Play segment addresses: Talking about plans and possibilities. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Returning to your home culture.

126) Winds of Change
The cafe employees face difficult choices about their futures. "The Word Play" segment addresses: Talking about necessity. "Cultural Clip" emphasizes: Achieving goals: giving in return.