Vague language

Look ath these examples of vague language:

Click here for more information and a quiz.

Composition. Deadline November 11th

My friend is prone to having accidents.

Write a description of a person you know or you knew.

Write 5 paragraphs:

a) Introduction and background information.
b) Physical appearance.
c) Personality traits.
d) Habits, activities, hobbies…
e) Conclusion: comments and feelings about the person.

Use a variety of structures to talk about habits: will/would, tend to, is prone to… My grandfather would always give us pocket money whenever we visited him…  He was prone to telling us off when we misbehaved.
Avoid very general adjectives (kind, nice, good, bad…) Use more specific ones (good-natured, charming, well-behaved, naughty…)
Support your description with examples: She is very popular with her neighbours because she is so helpful. She will always baby-sit for you when you need it.
Hand in your text within the deadline!


October, 26th

This week we've been discussing our families and learning how to describe personality with idioms. We also started to learn how to speculate in English. Please, revise pages 13 and 148 for personality idioms and page 128 (section 1.3.) for speculating.

HOMEWORK: page 15, exercise 4
Download this handout. Read the text carefully and see how it is organised. Label the paragraphs with the headings you'll find in the first paragraph.

Have a lovely weekend!


The Logical Song

Liste to The Logical Song by Supertramp and correct the wrong words in the lyrics. They're all personality adjectives!

When I was young, it seemed that life was so incredible,
a miracle, oh it was great, magical.
And all the birds in the trees, well they'd be singing so happily,
oh joyfully, oh playfully watching me.
But then they sent me away to teach me how to be sensitive,
logical, oh mature, down-to-earth.
And then they showed me a world where I could be so reliable,
oh clinical, oh intellectual, inspirational.
There are times when all the world's asleep,
the questions run too deep
for such an honest man.
Won't you please, please tell me what we've learned
I know it sounds ridiculous
but please tell me who I am
I said now watch what you say they'll be calling you rebellious,
a liberal, oh fanatical, murderous.
Won't you sign up your name, we'd like to feel you're
responsible, thoughtful, oh presentable, a vegetable!
Oh Take it take it yeah!

But at night, when all the world's asleep,
the questions run so deep
for such an honest man.
Won't you please, please tell me what we've learned
I know it sounds ridiculous
but please tell me who I am, 
Who I am x 3 !!!

Click here to check the answers when you finish.


It runs in the family

Revise vocabulary and expressions related to the family. You can click on the images to enlarge them:

If you want to practise or learn more vocabulary...
... find a family vocabulary crossword puzzle here

....unscramble the words here

... find the word for the definitions here

... find words in a wordsnake here

And just for fun, listen to Level 42 singing about their family.


October, 19th NOW WITH ANSWERS

This week we've been finding out whether we are good language learners and learning how to describe someone's personality. We have also learned how to talk about habits in the present and in the past. Please, revise pages 11, 12 and 13 (speaking section only)

If you want to learn more personality adjectives, click here.

Click here to try some exercises about present and past habits.

Here's something for the weekend. Listen to Michael Buble singing "Call me irresponsible" and try to fill in the gaps in the lyrics. They are all personality adjectives. You can post your answers in a comment when you're done. Have a lovely weekend!

Here you have the answers. Thanks Noelia and Alejandro for trying. You nearly got it right.

Throw in (3)UNDEPENDABLE, too

Do my (4)FOOLISH alibis bore you?
Well, I'm not too (5) CLEVER, I
I just adore you

So, call me (6)UNPREDICTABLE
Tell me I'm (7)IMPRACTICAL
Rainbows, I'm inclined to pursue
But it's undeniably true
That I'm irresponsibly mad for you


The Myers Briggs Test

If you're interested in knowing the MBTI in depth, and practise personality adjectives at the same time,  you can have a look at this link.

Personal characteristics

Do you think your position in the family determines your character? Try an experiment: look at the adjectives below and choose the ones that describe you.

Now read this text and see if it's true for you.

Try these links if you want to learn more personality adjectives:

Exercise 3

Would you like to create a personality word cloud? Click here. Bring your cloud for class decoration!
Here you have clouds for the adjectives we brainstormed yesterday in class:

Talking about present and past habits

Download this presentation if you want to learn how to talk about present and past habits.

Download the exercises here

You can try some exercises herehere and here.


Coldplay - Viva La Vida

Listen to the song and complete the gaps. All the words contain the schwa sound!

I used to rule _______ world
Seas _________ rise when I gave the word
Now in the morning I sleep __________
Sweep the streets I used to own
I used _______ roll the dice
Feel the fear in my enemy's eyes
_________ as the crowd would sing:
"Now the old king is dead! Long live the king!"
One minute I held the key
Next the walls _________ closed on me
And I ___________ that my castles stand
Upon pillars of salt and pillars of sand

I hear Jerusalem bells _________ ringing
________ Cavalry choirs are singing
Be my __________ my sword and shield
My missionaries in a __________ field
For some ________ I can’t explain
Once you’ve gone there was ________,
________ an honest word
That was when I ruled the world

It ______ a wicked and wild wind
Blew down the doors to let me in.
Shattered windows and the sound ________ drums
People couldn’t  believe what I'd become
Revolutionaries wait
For my head on a _______ plate
Just a puppet on a lonely string
Oh who would ________ want to be king?

I hear Jerusalem bells _________ ringing
________ Cavalry choirs are singing
Be my __________ my sword and shield
My missionaries in a __________ field
For some ________ I can’t explain
I know Saint _____ won’t call my name
Never an honest word
But that was when I ruled the world
Oooooh Oooooh Oooooh"

You can check your answers here

Pronunciation of schwa

Do you want to know more about this peculiar sound?
Watch the BBC video again:

Or listen to this radio programme

Download the exercises here


Stative Verbs in English

Listen to a teacher explaining what stative verbs are.

You can download the exercises we did in class here.
When you're done, try some exercises here,  here or here

And check out this link if you want a proper explanation of why you shouldn't say I´m loving it

Writing: a personal profile for a social networking site

You are going to write a personal profile for a facebook English study group.

  • Think about the language you are going to use: formal or informal?
  • Think about the purpose of your text and the information you need to include. Who is going to read your text?
  • Take some time to plan your writing before you actually start it.

You can download the worksheet here.

Twitter in Plain English

Watch the video "Twitter in Plain English" again:

Do you want more practice?

You'll find a reading and multiple choice exercise here.

Which social network are you? Take this quiz.


October 4th

This week we've been discussing names and revising the continuous tenses in English. Please, revise pages 8, 9, 128 and 129 (section 1.1) of your book.

If you want to practise name-related expressions, click here.

To watch the video about how to remember names click here.

To practise continuous tenses click here.

Have a look at the images if you want to revise important vocabulary. You can enlarge them by clicking on them.

Use the expressions above instead of the words in red.

How to remember people's names

Have you ever been in the embarrassing situation of forgettting someone's name? Here you have a few tricks you can use to remember someone's name.

Download the exercises here

You can see lots of how-to videos at Videojug

The continuous aspect

Click here for an explanation and an execise about the use of continuous tenses or here if you need to refresh the names of the different tenses. More exercises here.

If you need to practise verbal tenses, you'll find plenty of work to do here.


What's in a name?

Are you curious about the meaning of your name or its origin? Would you like to know how popular it is in other countries? Check this link out.

If you want to learn more expressions that contain the word "name" click here.

I'm sure you've heard of a bloody mary or adam's apple but, what is a black maria? Or where do you go if you go to the john? Click here and find out.

If you want to learn idioms that have proper names you can try this exercise.