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Wednesday, 29 April 2015

LEVELS OF FOREIGN LANGUAGE LEARNING


These are the levels in Europe when learning a foreign language. These levels belong to the Common European Framework, used in many schools and countries in Europe. For example Spanish EOIs (Escuelas Oficiales de Idiomas) use it.

Here are the levels explained:
[Taken from Easy English Articles]

Level A1: Beginner

  • Understands and communicates using basic vocabulary (e.g. food, names of countries, numbers).
  • Frequent errors in grammar and pronunciation.
Example Text “Mark is 12 years old. He has red hair and green eyes. His favourite sport is football.”

A2: Pre-Intermediate

  • Can complete routine tasks such as asking where the bathroom is in a restaurant.
  • Can describe very simply where they are from, their likes and dislikes etc.
  • Can use all simple tenses (I go, I went, I will go)
  • Frequent errors in grammar and pronunciation
Example Text: “Sarah and Tom went to the lake. It was a warm day and they took a picnic. There were lots of ducks swimming in the lake. The children decided to give the ducks some bread.”

B1: Intermediate

  • Students can use all simple tenses as well as continuous and perfect tenses. Students know the 1st conditional and some modal verbs. They can recognize the most common phrasal verbs (e.g. to get on with, to look after etc)
  • Students can communicate any idea that they have, but  may have errors in grammar and pronunciation.
  • Can deal with any situation that arises while travelling (e.g. telling someone they’ve lost their passport and asking what to do).
Example text: “Antarctica has had a powerful effect on both explorers and scientists. In 1994 I discovered why, when I spend 7 months there collecting material for my travel book. It simply isn’t like anywhere else on this planet. It is one-and-a-half times bigger than the United States, but it is very peaceful.”

B2: Upper Intermediate

  • Can use all tenses without error including 1st, 2nd and 3rd conditionals and all modal verbs
  • Can express ideas clearly and fluently and errors do not impede understanding
  • Has a wide range of vocabulary, can use phrasal verbs and  some idiomatic language (e.g. to throw someone in at the deep end) with ease.
Example Text: “Medicine isn’t quite like other degrees. I spent the first three years studying and attending lectures on general anatomy and following that, I was then allowed to pursue a specialist interest. It was a very time-intensive degree. However, being thrown in at the deep end of some of the most challenging situations I have ever been in, and having to deal with patients from all walks of life, was extremely inspirational and I wouldn’t change it for the world.”

C1: Advanced

  • Understands complex texts and has the ability to interpret meaning and read between the lines. Could read a broadsheet newspaper with no difficulty.
  • Can use all grammar structures correctly, including mixed conditionals.
  • Expresses themselves fluently and spontaneously without having to search for expressions. Can use idiomatic expressions with ease.
  • Would be able to study academically or work professionally in the language without much difficulty
Example text: “The author raises important, if familiar, questions concerning the quest for beauty in architecture, or its rejection or denial. Yet one is left with the feeling that he needed the help and support of earlier authors on the subject to walk him across the daunting threshold of Architecture itself. And he is given to making extraordinary claims: ‘Architecture is perplexing … in how inconsistent is its capacity to generate the happiness on which its claim to our attention is founded.’ If architecture’s capacity to generate happiness is inconsistent, this might be because happiness has rarely been its foundation.

C2 Proficiency

  • Often considered ‘native’ ability. However, not all native speakers would be able to pass a C2 level exam.
  • Can understand any document, including academic journals and legal documents with ease. Can identify nuances in language and distinguish between finer shades of meaning even in the most complex of texts.
  • Can express themselves articulately, spontaneously and fluently without any grammatical or pronunciation errors.
Example text: “Member States shall refrain from introducing between themselves any new customs duties on imports or exports or any charges having equivalent effect, and from increasing those which they already apply in their trade with each other. Charges having an effect equivalent to customs duties on imports, in force between Member States, shall be progressively abolished during the transitional period. The Commission shall determine by means of directives the timetable for such abolition. It shall be guided by the rules contained in Article 14(2) and (3) and by the directives issued by the Council pursuant to Article 14(2).”
Check you level here: TEST YOUR ENGLISH.

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

THE MORSE-CODE DAY (27th APRIL)


Just in the week we're celebrating our Cultural Week devoted to handwriting, we've learnt that yesterday was Morse-Code Day, commemorating the birth of its inventor Samuel Morse in 1791. The Morse Code is a system used for sending messages in which letters and numbers are represented by short and long marks, sounds or flashes of light.

Complete info HERE.

Galician version of this post @ ArquivosDoTrasno.

Monday, 27 April 2015

STUDENT'S CONTRIBUTIONS IN ENGLISH FOR THE 6th CULTURAL WEEK

Our 6th Cultural Week is already here:
"THE HISTORY OF HANDWRITING".
Enjoy it!

And here's the collection of works that students (from 4ºESO-B) have handed in. Not many, but the ones given are original. Other students (from 4ºESO-A) have shared their voices to read the literary quotes.

This is our way to thank their contibutions, devoting a post to show their work.

 (6th Cultural Week-15: Writing in the 21st century)

- WRITING IN THE 21st CENTURY:
Writing in the 21st century displayed poster.


[Whatsapp by Pablo Rodríguez]
[Whatsapp by Marta Rodríguez]
[Tweets by Iulia VaduvaOthers were handed in by: 
Rodrigo Folgueira & Andrea Plaza  and can be seen on the displayed poster]
[Pictograms by Eva Menéndez]

- HANDWRITTEN QUOTES:
(Handwritten quotes displayed poster)



[By Vera Iglesias]
[By Alba Guerreiro]
[By Noemi Rey]
[By Silvia Vijande. Another quote handed in by: Noemi Zubieta, 
can be seen on the displayed poster]

We would also like to thank: Ana Amigo, Paula Calviño, Marta Delgado, Sergio Ríos & Rubén Sande, who shared their voices to read the literary handwritten quotes (from previous page) for the project slide done by the school's library. Link HERE to video where their voices are included and where you can see all the work done for this Cultural Week by the students.

MATERIALS. WHAT ARE THINGS MADE OF?


This post is devoted to learning vocabulary on the different common materials of which many things we use are made of.


KINDS OF METAL: 
ALLOY, ALUMINIUM, BRASS, BRONZE, COPPER, GOLD, IRON, LEAD, SILVER, STEEL, ZINC...

KINDS OF MATERIAL/FABRICS/CLOTH FOR CLOTHES: 
ACRYLIC, CASHMERE, COTTON, CORDUROY, DENIM, FLANNEL, LACE, LEATHER, LINEN, NYLON, POLYESTER, SILK, SUEDE, WOOL...

KINDS OF MATERIAL FOR CONSTRUCTION-BUILDERS & TECHNOLOGY:
BRICKS, CARBONFIBRE, CEMENT, CERAMIC, CONCRETE, FIBERGLASS, GLASS, MARBLE, METAL, PLASTER, PLASTIC, RUBBER, STONE, WAX, WOOD...


Check a complete list of materials with their Spanish equivalents HERE.

- SUFFIX -EN MAKES AN ADJECTIVE TO EXPLAIN WHAT THINGS ARE MADE OF:

- It's a wooden house.
- It's a golden bracelet.
- It's a woolen pullover.

These materials each have different characteristics and properties, on the chart below you can see adjectives which refer to these properties.
Practice-exercises:
When describing things apart from saying what they're made of you can also refer to the shape they are. To check on English vocabulary of SHAPES, click HERE.

Sunday, 26 April 2015

WORLDWIDE LANGUAGE STATISTICS

Here are some maps and charts published by American newspaper The Washington Post, which shows the world's diversity of languages.

- NUMBER OF LANGUAGES BY CONTINENTS:

- LANGUAGES ACCORDING TO THE NUMBER OF NATIVE SPEAKERS:

- NUMBER OF COUNTRIES THAT SPEAK EACH LANGUAGE:

- NUMBER OF LEARNERS OF EACH LANGUAGE:

- ENDANGERED LANGUAGES THROUGHOUT THE WORLD:

  • 35 COUNTRIES where english is official language:
  • Belize
  • Botswana
  • Canada
  • Cameroon
  • Eritrea
  • Fiji
  • Ghana
  • Guyana
  • India
  • Ireland
  • Jamaica
  • Kenya
  • Liberia
  • Lesotho
  • Malawi
  • Namibia
  • Nigeria
  • New Zealand
  • Pakistan
  • Philippines
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Puerto Rico
  • Rwanda
  • Sudan
  • South Sudan
  • Solomon Islands
  • Sierra Leone
  • Swaziland
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Tanzania
  • Uganda
  • Vanuatu
  • South Africa
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Saturday, 25 April 2015

THE WORLD'S MOST USED 'EMOJIS'

 (6th Cultural Week-14: Writing in the 21st century)


Emoticons, 'emojis' or smileys are certainly the new way of communicating of the digital era. Emoticons have come a long way since the days of :-) and they are already 32 years old. 
Link:The emoticon celebrates its 30th birthday (Sept'12)







Thanks to "emojis" (from Japanese = "picture character") we can express complex emotions and ideas in a simple way when textmessaging,whatsapping or tweeting.




There are different rankings showing the most used emoticons throughout the world.




On this post we can see some ranking results, above and on the left. 




The latter was a survey carried out in 2014 by Matthew Rothenberg on Twitter in real time. The survey was made counting tweets in many languages from Arabic to Chinese, English... and the resulting TOP 100 is the one on the left. Hearts top the list by far and love is also prominent.




If we are to answer the previous question, these are the results from 2014:
- These are the leading countries of each emoticon family:
babies - Latin America
cats - Brazil
female themed icons - the UK
violence - Canada
holidays - Australia
parties/'fiestas' - Spain
sadness - USA Hispanics
hearts - France
happy faces - Turkey
romanticism - Russia
flowers - Arab countries
hand signs - Malaysia
- The French use the heart icon, in any of its versions, four times more than average. Russians use romantic icons (kisses, love-letters, kissing couples) three times more than average.
- USA is the worldwide leader in the use of the chicken thigh, the aubergine (this use considered obscene), the birthday cake and the money bag.
- French & Vietnamese are the ones who seldom use smileys related to homosexuality, such as the rainbow or same-sex couples holding hands.
- The smiling poo is mostly used in the USA, the UK and Brazil. It's considered a funny emoji, but Russians don't seem to like it much.

More and more people have fun using emoticons to write the names of songs, films, sentences, short stories.

Here are some funny ones we've found:
- Can you decode this message?
(Scroll to the end of the post for the translation*)

- A summary of "Les Miserables"

*Translation: "Writing in longhand takes too much time and space, so in the future this newspaper will be written entirely in emoticons and sent directly to your mobile phone."

Friday, 24 April 2015

TYPING: THE EVOLUTION IN WRITING

 (6th Cultural Week-13: Writing in the 21st century)

About to start next Monday our 6th Cultural Week devoted to THE HISTORY OF HANDWRITING, we're showing a funny video of how young kids react to what is now an "ancient" machine already: THE TYPEWRITER.  
The typewriter was the stage between handwriting and typing as we do now on computers or smartphones. Have a look at this video and see how something not so old for many of us is like a dinosaur for youngest ones.

Video Reacting to Old Typewriters:

Thursday, 23 April 2015

CLINES IN LANGUAGE LEARNING

What is a cline?
The British Council Teaching English website defines a cline as ‘a scale of language items that goes from one extreme to another, for example, from positive to negative, or from weak to strong’.Clines can be very effective in clarifying language, giving a very visual representation of meaning. They are very versatile and can be used for vocabulary or grammar.
The examples of clines you can see here were taken from the blog Recipes for the EFL classroom. Above this text: temperature vocabulary. Below: adverbs of frequency:

- Expressing likes and dislikes:
- Feelings: degrees of hunger.

Friday, 17 April 2015

EXAMPLES OF TEXT-MESSAGES, WHATSAPPS & TWEETS

(6th Cultural Week-12: Writing in the 21st century)
Here are some examples of text-messages/whatsapps and the first contibutions as tweets:

ARE YOU ABLE TO UNDERSTAND THESE MESSAGES? 
If you need help to decode them, remember to check HERE.

And here's an example of a Tweet handed in by one of our students:

CAN YOU PREPARE SOME MORE FOR THE EXHIBITION? 
HAND IN BEFORE WEDNESDAY, 22nd.

Thursday, 16 April 2015

LUKE'S TALK AT "RAFAEL DIESTE"

This morning, we had the pleasure to receive Luke's visit to our school. He's an Englishman from Liverpool, who lives in A Coruña.
Unfortunately, we forgot to take photos of him talking, but during his talk he showed the cartoon picture of "Family Guy's" character Peter Griffin, telling us that his friends said he looked like him.

Luke gave a speech for 1stBAC students about British culture: 
- the British flag ("The Union Jack"), (Info about this is also in this blog: HERE1)
- the difference between Northern Ireland, part of the UK, and the Republic of Ireland(Info about this is also in this blog:  HERE2).
- why British drive on the left, which countries do so and the reason why. (Info about this is also in this blog:  HERE3).
- Scottish traditions (pagpipes, kilts, tartan...)

He was very amusing, making students participate and enjoy.

Thanks Luke and we hope to see you again (and take photos when you come!)

Luke is sponsored by Burlington Books.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

TEMPLATES FOR YOUR TEXT-MESSAGES, WHATSAPPS & TWEETS

 (6th Cultural Week-11: Writing in the 21st century)




If you're taking part in the activities writing mobile phone text-messages, whatsapps or tweets in English, here are some templates you can download and print to use them or ask your teacher. Remember to use the usual English textmessage acronyms-abbreviations.

Blog labels / Tabs

'-ED' '-ING' €vision 1ºBac 1ºESO 2ºBac 2ºESO 3ºESO 4ºESO Abbreviations Accents Adjectives Ads Adverbs Agreeing Alphabet Animals Animation Anniversaries Apologizing AprilFool Art Articles Aux.Verbs Basics BE Behaviour BlackFriday Blog Body BonfireNight BrE/AmE Business Carnival Celebration Christmas Class activity ClassrooManagement ClassroomLanguage Collocations Colours Commitment Communicating Comparatives Competition Conditionals Confusing Connectors Contractions ConversationAssist Cooking Coruña Cosmos Countability Culture Curiosities Date Demonstratives Derivation Descriptions Directions DO EllenDGeneres Emails Environment Exclamations FalseFriends Family Feelings Films Food FrequencyAdvs Fun-joke Functions Furniture Future Galicia Gender Geography GET GO Graduation Grammar Greetings Halloween HandwritingHistory HAVE Health Help tips Heritage History Home Homophones HumanRights Hygiene ICT Idioms Infinitive Informal Instruments Internet Ireland IrregularVerbs Jobs Karaoke Language learning Leisure Letterwriting LIKE Link Listening Literature London LoveActually MAKE Maps Maths Media MindMap Mistakes ModalVerbs Money Music MusicProject Natural disasters Nature Negative News Numbers Obit OLA Onomatopoeias Opinions Passive Past Peace Penpals Personality Phoning Photography PhrasalVerbs Pioneers Plurals Poetry Politeness Politics Poll Possessive Practice-exercise Preference Prefix Prepostions Present PresentPerfect Press Projects Pronunciation Punctuation QTags Quantifiers QuestionMaking Questionnaire Quiz Qwords RD25Years Reading Relatives ReportedSpeech Routines Royals School activities Science Senses Shopping Slang Slide Speaking Spelling Sport SportProject St.Patrick Storytelling Student Exchange StudentPics Suffix Suffragette Symbols Synonyms Teaching Technology Terrorism Thanksgiving THE Theatre Time Traditions Translation Travel Tribute TV UK USA USED TO Valentine Vehicles Verbs VerbTenses Video-lesson Videos Vocabulary vs Wales Wearing Weather Women WordOrder Writing

PERFORMANCE-1

PERFORMANCE-1
Link to website

AN APP TO LEARN ENGLISH

FIND OUT YOUR ENGLISH LEVEL

FIND OUT YOUR ENGLISH LEVEL
Click on image to do the test

WRITING PRACTICE

PHONEMIC CHART

PHONEMIC CHART
Practice pronunciation

AUTHENTIC SPEAKING PRACTICE

AUTHENTIC SPEAKING PRACTICE
WeSpeke

English pronunciation

English pronunciation
Voice me: give voice to a text you write

INCREDIBLE ENGLISH

Play the English Wizz

Play the English Wizz
Click on the photo, choose your level and have a go.

Play Face Match

Play the Quiz Show

Play SPIN & SPELL

Play SPIN & SPELL
Play spellings words

PLAY VERB MACHINE

CLICK TO MANY TV CHANNELS

CLICK TO MANY TV CHANNELS
Watch BBC, ITV & many more...

LEARN ENGLISH FROM FILMS

LEARN ENGLISH FROM FILMS
Speechyard

Penpals.

TODAY I FOUND OUT

LONDON NEIGHBOURHOOD GUIDES

LONDON NEIGHBOURHOOD GUIDES
Notting Hill, Bayswater, Marylebone / West End / The City / Mayfair & Westminster / South Kensington, Belgravia, Victoria / Southbank & Southwark

SCHOOL EMERGENCY RULES