#128 2 Quick Riddles & Kasha Malasha Translation

Published on July 29, 2008

English Teachers in Russia & Elsewhere #128

Russian Product Banner in Mountain View, California

=> 4 Riddles: Easy C-Test Activities
=> Kasha Malasha Translation Activity
=> Riddle Answers

Quick Riddle C-Test Activity

In a C-test, half of every second word is missing. An apostrophe counts as a letter.
In the four riddles below, students will figure out the missing letters and complete the words. Then, in groups, they can try to guess the answers to the riddles. (The answers are at the bottom of the page).
You write these on the board before the students even arrive. That way, students are thinking English language before the class even starts. are already filling the gaps and solving the riddles as class begins.
1. Can yo__ find th_ words fo_ three consec___ days with___ using Mon___, Tuesday, Wedn___, Thursday, Fri___, Saturday, o__ Sunday?
2. This thi__ has fi__ fingers, b__ it isn__ alive. Wh__ is i__?
3. What i__ white whi__ it’s dir__ and bla__ when it__ clean?
4. This belo__ to y__. Other peo__ use i__ very oft__ when th__ are wi__ you, bu__ you don__. What i__ it?

Kasha Malasha Translation Activity

I found this grocery shop in Mountain View, California, and outside was a banner reading “Russian Products.” So IRussian buckwheat exported to America went in and bought some of that kasha that comes in packages.

This kasha (buckwheat) was made for export, so there were English instructions how to cook it. These instructions made me laugh until a tear fell out of my eye and landed on my elbow.

It’s really a mish-mash of a translation–thus, kasha malasha.

Here’s the task (which will of course only work for Russian-speaking students of English).

1) Give a pair of students or a small group the English text. Their job is to translate it into Russian.

2) When they have done so, show them the original Russian text (see below). Discuss any surprises.

3) Now that they have both versions, ask them to re-write the English translation, making it accurate and comprehensible.Instructions for preparing Kasha

Here’s the English translation:

To place a bag in a plenty of the boiling added some salt water. To cook on moderate fire of 15 minutes. To get a bag, having picked up a plug for a loop, stipulated for this purpose. To allow water to flow down. To open a bag, having broken off it on a line of notches. To lay out a product on a dish and add oil to taste.

Here’s the Russian version

Поместить пакетик в большое количество кипящей подсоленной воды. Варить на умеренном огне 15 минут. Достать пакетик, и, подцепив вилкой за петлю, предусмотренную для этой цели, дать воде стечь. Открыть пакетик, разорвав его по линии надсечек. Выложить продукт на блюдо и добавить масло по вкусу.

Riddle Answers

1. Can you find the words for three consecutive days without using Monday, Tuesday Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, or Sunday?

Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow

2. This thing has five fingers, but it isn’t alive. What is it?

A glove

3. What is white when its dirty and black when its clean?

A blackboard

4. This belongs to you. Other people use it very often when they are with you, but you don’t. What is it?

Your name

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