Thursday, 23 April 2009

World Book Day 2009

World Book Day is held on April, 23rd to commemorate the death of Shakespeare and Cervantes, two of the world's most celebrated writers. For more information on this topic, click on this link, which will take you to last year's World Book Day entry.
Today, the members of the Spanish Language and Literature Department of our school have made a series of activities to commemorate this special date. These activities have been based on the American Romantic writer Edgar Allan Poe, 200 years after his birth. We have seen an exhibition of different projects made by the students about this author, together with a video of some of his tales. Moreover, every teacher has received a traditional gift in Spain this day: a rose. Thank you very much, my dear colleagues.
Read and listen to Poe's "The Raven" in the following video:

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Earth Day 2009

Time for reflection:
What would the planet look like if we reduced the entire population of Earth into a small community of 100 people, while maintaining the same proportions we have today?

Look at this video, think about it and leave a comment if you want to.

These percentages may vary since they are only statistics and they can change after a few months or years, but anyway, the video is shocking.

Appreciate what you have ...
and do your best for a better world

Monday, 20 April 2009

The Future in English

There is no proper "future tense" in English. However, there are multiple ways of expressing future time: Will, Be going to, Present continuous and Present simple.

Tense & Time
Tense is a grammatical category while time is a semantic one.
It is important not to confuse the name of a verb tense with the way we use it to talk about time. Look at the following chart to see how different tenses can be used to talk about different times.

Will, Be going to, Present continuous and Present simple for Future Time
Present continuous: Explanation and exercises
Present simple: Explanation and exercises

Friday, 17 April 2009

"Happy Ending", Mika

I love this song! Do you like it too?
What is it about?

Song lyrics | Happy Ending lyrics

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Traditional British Recipes

Although the main aim of this blog is to help people to learn English, we cannot forget that culture is also a very important aspect to take into account when studying a foreign language. So, this post is intended for you to know some traditional British recipes.

British recipes:

Custard is a range of preparations based on milk and eggs. Most commonly, custard refers to a dessert or dessert sauce, but custard bases are also used for quiche and other savoury foods. As a dessert, it is made from a combination of milk or cream, egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla. Sometimes flour, corn starch, or gelatin are also added. (Source: Wikipedia)
Ready made custard is usually excellent but this recipe is based on how it used to be made a long time ago. It is easy to make and the only thing that could go wrong is that it might become too hot and curdle. If it does? Don't worry. Just whisk in an egg and it will return to normal. This can be served hot or allowed to chill in the fridge. For an 'extra special' custard stir in about 150ml or 5 fl oz of double cream at the very end of the heating process.

25g or 1 oz caster sugar
300ml or 10 fl oz of boiling milk
3 drops of vanilla essence
2 large egg yolks

1. Beat the egg yolks
2. In a large bowl place the sugar, vanilla essence and the beaten egg yolks and mix together.
3. Now pour in the boiling milk, whisking as you pour.
4. Put the custard into a saucepan and, over a LOW heat, stir until the right constituency is obtained. Test by putting a wooden spoon in the mixture - it should cover the back of the spoon when the spoon is lifted out. DO NOT let the mixture boil or you will end up with sweet scrambled eggs.
5. If you want to add the double cream then this is the time to do it.
6. Remove from the heat and either serve immediately or allow to cool. Once cooled it should be covered and kept in the fridge for 2 days. Do not reheat once chilled.

I hope you enjoy cooking traditional British food, if you try any of the recipes, please tell me.

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

April Fools' Day

April Fools' Day or All Fools' Day, although not a holiday in its own right, is a notable day celebrated in many countries on April 1. The day is marked by the commission of hoaxes and other practical jokes of varying sophistication on friends, family members, enemies, and neighbors, or sending them on a fool's errand, the aim of which is to embarrass the gullible. Traditionally, in some countries, the jokes only last until noon: like UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and South Africa, someone who plays a trick after noon is called an "April Fool". Elsewhere, such as in Ireland, France, and the USA, the jokes last all day. (Source: Wikipedia)