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Monday, 11 December 2017 14:54

Episode 21 - It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year? What about S.A.D.?


Episode Description:

The acronym S.A.D. stands for Seasonal Affective Disorder. It is a common feeling of sadness or depression many people experience in the wintertime due to gloomy weather, darkness, and short daylight hours. This episode tells more about S.A.D. and gives some practical steps to help you handle it. 

This is not certifiable medical advice. Each person's circumstances is different. If needed, consult a medical professional.

Word for the Day: affective (adjective) relates to moods, feelings, or attitudes

Listen to Episode 21 below: 

Listen Here


Check your listening ability:

1. Two examples of acronym Mr. Dreyer uses are ___________, meaning ____________________, and ___________, meaning _______________.


2. Although songs claim Christmas is the "most wonderful time of the year," that is not the case for many people. Why?


3. What angle is the earth at on its axis?

A. 45°

B. 23.5°

C. 0°

D. 10°


4. T/F The northern hemisphere has shorter days during the Christmas season. 


5. At 6:41, Mr. Dreyer says "double whammy. What does this phrase mean?

A. a rude name for twins

B. a baseball term when the hitting team hits two home runs in a row

C. a twofold hit or setback

D. a double cheeseburger at Burger King


6. Why is Christmas on December 25?

A. The Bible tells us Jesus was born on this date.

B. Pagan festivals were already occuring around this time and church fathers Christianized them.

C. This is Saint Nicholas' birthday.

D. Emperor Augustus declared it so in the year 7 AD to commemorate his wife.


7. Which of the following is NOT a symptom of S.A.D.?

A. High boost of energy before going to bed

B. Loss of interest in things you normally like

C. Sleeping too much or too little

D. Feeling sluggish


8. What is another name for St. Petersburg, a city in Russia?


9. Which of the following is good treatment to combat S.A.D.?

A. Get more sunlight

B. Stay warm inside

C. Move far away from family

D. Put an icepack on your forehead


10. The largest demographic shift in America is people moving from the _____belt to the ____belt.

Answer Key:

1. USA - United States of America; PRC - People's Republic of China

2. The busyness can cause stress. They are overspending. They have bad memories or associations with this season from growing up. Some people have a birthday in this season and they may feel cheated if the celebrations are combined.

3. B. 23.5°

4. True

5. C. a twofold hit or setback

6. B. Pagan festivals were already occuring around this time and church fathers Christianized them.

7. A. High boost of energy before going to bed

8. Leningrad

9. A. Get more sunlight

10. rust; sun



Do you want to improve your listening ability? Contact Scott today to see what class you can take to improve that skill!

Have a question or feedback? Maybe a topic you’d like to hear in a future episode? Please email Scott at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We’d love to hear from you! If you enjoy our podcasts, please subscribe, write a review, and share them on social media and by word of mouth! Those are GREAT ways to help more people find our podcasts. Please also visit us at; check out the blog posts at the bottom of the page for more information about life in the USA and the crazy English language.

Scott Dreyer

A licensed teacher in the US state of Virginia since 1987, Scott Dreyer has been helping Chinese speakers improve their English since 1989. Dreyer lived in Taiwan from 1989-1999 where he learned Mandarin, met his wife, started his family, and realized he loved working with Chinese students. He became an award-winning author and started teaching ESL online in 2008. Dreyer and his wife and their four adult children make their home in the beautiful Roanoke Valley in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia.