Poor Ana – by Blaine Ray (Level 1 – Book A)
The easiest novel that exists in English – for first-year students.  A vocabulary of only 300 words.  Ana is a 15-year-old girl who leads a tough life in a small city in Mexico.  Her mother is always on her.  Her family doesn’t have much money, but her best friend’s families have more money.  She’s extremely jealous of them.

When she gets an opportunity to go to California, she goes to Los Angeles, where she lives with a very nice family that has conflicts similar to the ones in her own family.  Her view of her life changes radically.  When she gets back home, she sees everything in a different light.

Poor Ana is short and easy.  When they read it, beginning students discover that they have actually learned a significant amount of English.  Level 1 – Book A.

Chapter Five

Ana wakes up the next day and goes to the gym alone.  She meets a girl at the gym.  The girl’s name is Nancy.  Nancy is very nice.  She invites Ana to her house.  After exercising for an hour, the two girls leave the gym and go to Nancy’s house.

Nancy opens the door.  Nancy and Ana go into the house.  Nancy’s Mom hears them.  She yells at her daughter, “Nancy, your bedroom is dirty!  You need to clean it.”

“Sorry, Mom.  I have a new friend.  Her name is Ana.  Ana is from Mexico.  She’s here for three months.”

Nancy’s Mom comes into the living room and looks at Ana.  She shakes her hand and says, “It’s nice to meet you, Ana.  Welcome to the United States.”

“Thank you, ma’am,” Ana says.  “It’s nice to meet you, too.”

Ana and Nancy go to Nancy’s bedroom.  They sit on the bed and talk.  Ana doesn’t understand much, but she understands a little.

“Do you like the United States?” Nancy asks her.

“Yes, I like it but I don’t understand much English.  I need more time in the United States,” Ana says.

“Do you like American music?” Nancy asks Ana.

“Yes, I like it.  I like music in English.  I like all kinds of music.  I also like to dance.  Are there dances here?” asks Ana.

“Yes, there are a lot of dances.  I like to dance too,” says Nancy.

“What kind of food do you like?”

Nancy says, “I like all kinds of food.  I like hamburgers, hot dogs and pizza.  In California, everyone eats pizza.  Everyone goes to Pizza Hut and Dominos.  I think all of my friends like to eat pizza.  What do you eat in Mexico?”

“We eat tacos, burritos and enchiladas.  We eat a lot of tortillas and all kinds of fruit,” says Ana.

“I like tacos,” says Nancy.  “What is your school like?  Is it a good school?  Tell me about your school.”

“My school is a good school.  It’s a private school.  Most schools in Mexico are private schools.  It’s not a big school but it’s a good school,” Ana explains.

Nancy is surprised to hear that Ana goes to a private school.  She says, “There aren’t very many private schools in California.  Almost everyone goes to a public school.  In some parts of the United States there are more private schools, but there aren’t many private schools in California.  We don’t have uniforms.  Do you like uniforms?”

“Yes, I like them.  We all have uniforms.  We don’t have different clothing.  It’s good.  We’re used to the uniforms.  Our school is a religious school.  It’s a Catholic school.  We study religion in school,” says Ana.

“At my school, we don’t have religion classes,” says Nancy.  “We have six classes.  We go to one classroom for one subject and then we all go to different classrooms for different subjects.”

“We don’t go to other classrooms.  The teachers go to different classrooms,” says Ana.

Nancy and Ana talk for a long time.  Ana is very happy.  Nancy speaks very slowly and Ana understands.  When Nancy speaks fast, Ana doesn’t understand.  They talk for two hours.  Then Ana goes home.  At night, Ana goes to bed and quickly falls asleep.


Poor Ana is published by:
Blaine Ray Workshops, which features TPR Storytelling products and related materials.
Command Performance Language Institute, which features Total Physical Response products and other fine products related to language acquisition and teaching.
Cover art by Pol (www.polanimation.com)
First Edition published June, 2007.
Copyright 2007 by Blaine Ray.  All rights reserved.  No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording or by an information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from Blaine Ray.