30 Mar 2012

Christina Perri

A singer I've discovered this week is Christina Perri, a struggling singer-songwriter and musician who had a life-changing moment when she was asked to peform one of her songs "Jar of Hearts" on a TV show. She immediately connected with the viewers and a few months later she released her debut album Lovestrong

Her songs "The Lonely", "A Thousand Years", "Jar of Hearts" are incredibly beautiful. Listen to this one "Arms".

I really like her voice and I wish her all the best in her career.

29 Mar 2012

Infinitive of Purpose

As I pointed out in class, a common mistake you often make when speaking and writing in English is using the infinitive of purpose in a wrong way, that is to say, trying to use 'for' instead of a 'to-infinitive' when you want to express purpose.

       -  He's looking for a part time job to save some money.
       -  She wakes up early to be on time for work.
       - They exercise regularly not to get fat.

So, here you have some exercises to practise the use of purpose in English.
Joke, Explanation and Exercises
Multiple Choice
Paraphrasing Activity

28 Mar 2012


We talked in class about believing or not in luck, and if we think some people are born lucky or not. If you didn't have time in class to express your opinion or if you have more to say on this subject, write a comment! We can continue the class debate in here.

Do you want to know my opinion?

I believe luck exists. I think it's one more thing we have in life. However, I strongly believe that one person can change his/her luck if they try hard enough. One of my favourite quotations about luck is "Luck meets a prepared mind". 

Do you know more quotations on luck?

Word of the week: "Puzzling"

This week's adjective is


which means difficult to understand or solve; confusing in some way.

This adjective comes from the noun "puzzle" which is used to refer to a game in which you have to think about carefully in order to answer it or do it.

The world is a puzzling place today.
It is puzzling to me that such a beautiful place is still so underdeveloped.
His actions were puzzling. We still don't know why he acted that way.

27 Mar 2012

Over-protective Parents

As you know we talked in class about protective parents. Have a look at the following article published on the Daily Mail Online on this subject. 

If you want to read more on this subject, here you have another article published by MxAbout Tips & Advice.

               Over-protective parents

Leave your opinion in a comment. 

26 Mar 2012

Podcast: The extinction of men

Today's podcast talks about the possibility of men becoming extinct. Listen to the podcast to find out why this might happen

Remember to check the transcript

Can you imagine a world without men?

The speakers talk about several matters which would be tricky if men didn't exist such as lifting heavy things, opening jars or catching mice

What's your opinion on this? 

24 Mar 2012


An Irish band I discovered when I lived in Ireland is Westlife. These four Irishmen have been singing for 12 years. During their career they have released 10 albums and produced 14 No1s (only 3 less than The Beatles). However, this year they're touring together for the last time, since they've decided to separate and pursue solo careers. 

In their albums they combine romantic songs, such as "Flying without wings", "Unbreakable" and "Miss you nights" with more rhythmic ones, for example "World of our own" and "When you're looking like that".

In the following video you can listen to one of my favourite songs "Agains all odds" which they sing with Mariah Carey.

Did you know Westlife?
Do you like them? 

21 Mar 2012

Word of the week: "Don't get me wrong"

This week's expression is

Don't get me wrong

which you can use when you think someone might not understand what you say or be upset about it.

Example: Don't get me wrong, I'd love to come but I'm too busy next week

You can also use this expression before giving an opinion about someone or something if you don't want people to think that you're criticising that person or thing too severely

Example: Don't get me wrong, I like Carol, I just think she has some irritating habits.

What would be the Spanish equivalent? 
Write your answer in a comment!

19 Mar 2012

Podcast: US Orbit Anniversary

This podcast talks about the space race and about a former astronaut, John Glenn, the first American who orbited the Earth 50 years ago.  Do you know what NASA stands for? Listen and discover! 

Remember to have a look at the transcript and vocabulary to check understanding.

You can write the answer to the question in a comment!

18 Mar 2012

5 things that rocked my world this week!

1. I celebrated my birthday with my family this weekend and we managed to sit 17 people in my living room. We had a nice dinner and loads of laughs. Thanks a bunch to everyone, especially to my husband who helped me clean afterwards!

2. I started the 2nd term exams with my students and most of them show some progress, especially those who always come to class! Well done, students! Keep comming back!

3. I listened to some Irish music and saw some Irish dancing on Saint Patrick's Day, which reminded me of the lovely time I spent in Ireland and my Irish family. I miss you, guys!

4. One of my favourite writers finished a new book I've Got Your Number, by Sophie Kinsella, which I'll be buying online soon.

5. These motivating words I found.

17 Mar 2012

Happy St. Patrick's Day To Everyone!

Saint Patrick's Day is a religious holiday celebrated on 17th March. It commemorates Saint Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland

It is celebrated with parades, "wearing of the green", some Irish music and dancing, Irish food and drink, and activities for kids such as crafts and coloring games. Overall, it's a time for fun. Some communities even go as far as to dye rivers green and some bars serve green beer.

If you want to make green beer, here you have a site which explains how to do it.
If you want to try an Irish coffee, here you have a link with a recipe to prepare it.

And finally I'll leave you with an Irish toast:

Here's to a long life and a merry one.
A quick death and an easy one.
A pretty girl and an honest one.
A cold beer and another one!

16 Mar 2012

The Corrs

Since tomorrow, 17th March, it's Saint Patrick's Day, I think it's appropriate to talk about Irish music today. A typical Irish band, composed by siblings, is The Corrs. They became very well-known all over the world due to their particular music style pop rock with Celtic folk music.

They released five albums together, being the most famous Talk on Corners, which included songs such as "Only when I sleep", "Hopelessly Addicted" and "what can I do". Nowadays Andrea and Sharon are pursuing solo careers while Caroline and Jim are raising families.

In the following video you can listen to a very famous Irish song. I believe this kind of music rises your spirit. What do you think?

14 Mar 2012

Word of the week: "Handy"

This week's adjective is


which has different meanings: a handy person means that they're skilful in using their hands or tools to repair or fix something; when talking about things handy means useful or conveninent or even easy to use; and when referring to places handy means easily within reach, in other words, near or accessible.

There's also an informal expression "to come in handy" which means to be useful.

Her husband is very handy; he knows how to fix everything in their house. 
Can I borrow your dictionary? It's very handy because of its size.
Our house is very handy for the station.
The extra money came in handy at the end of the month.

12 Mar 2012

Podcast: Property Markets

In the following podcast you can listen a bit more about property markets, in particular about a couple who have recently bought a flat. You even have a true or false activity to check your uderstanding. 

Here you can check the transcript and activity.

And some interesting vocabulary you can listen to in this podcast:
       We aren't getting any younger
       Prices are always on the up.
       household debt
       a mortgage
       a warming party

9 Mar 2012


Beyoncé has been singing alone for some years now. Do you remember she started with the R&B group Destiny's Child? Yes, she did. They were quite famous at the time. However, Beyoncé decided to pursue a solo career and nowadays she has become a top artist all over the world. 

Apart from singing, she has appeared in a number of films and she owns a fashion line, called House of Dereon, with her mother. Moreover, she and her husband, the rapper Jay-Z, have recently had a child, whom they named Blue Ivy Carter.

One of my favourite songs by Beyoncé is Best thing I never had.

Which is your favourite song by Beyoncé?

8 Mar 2012

Make or Do

"Make or do" is a bit like "to be, or not to be, that is the question". You need to learn when to use one or the other. 

We've already seen some examples but there are many more. On the following site you have a list of expressions with make or do.
Then, you can do some tests:
Quiz 1
Quiz 2
Quiz 3
Now you know a little bit more about make or do!

7 Mar 2012

Word of the week: "That's what it takes"

This week's expression is

that's what it takes

which means everything that is needed.

Example: You have to spend a lot of money becuase that's what it takes to make a winning team.

A similar expression is "to have what it takes" and this one means to have the skills, power or intelligence to do something, or, to have the qualities or character needed to achieve something.

I guess I don't have what it takes to be a good actor.
All the candidates think they have what it takes to get the job.

5 Mar 2012

Podcast: Estate Agents

We have already seen house advertisements. Let's talk now about estate agents, that is to say, the people who help you buy a house. This podcast talks about the language used by estate agents, all these positive words they use in order to convince you to buy a house or flat. 

After listening to it, have a look at the transcript.

Have you ever experienced this kind of manipulation with language?

4 Mar 2012

Enjoy the Sunday

Hey English students! Are you enjoying the Sunday?
I hope you're all having fun with friends and family and relaxing a little bit!

What about a sweet bite to enjoy this day even more?
Try this recipe:

They look delicious, don't they?

3 Mar 2012

More American Slang

Do you want to know more slang words and expressions?

Have a look at the video I've created!

I really like the expression to go bananas! It's so funny!

Which one is your favourite?

2 Mar 2012

Avril Lavigne

Avril Lavigne burst into the music scene at age 17 as a young, pop-punk artist singing about skaters and teenage love. But ten years have come and gone during which she has won many awards and sold millions of copies. Now she has evolved as a person and as an artist and she even has her own charitable foundation to help children and youth living with disabilities.

I've followed her music career from the beginning. Songs I like by Avril Lavigne are: "When you're gone", "My happy ending", "Nobody's home", "Things I'll never say" and "Nobody's fool".

In her new album Goodbye Lullaby we can appreciate her developed style. 

What do you think of Avril Lavigne's music style?

1 Mar 2012

Verb Patterns

Verb patterns in English can be difficult to remember! In order to do so, you have to use them many times! Here you have some activities to practise all these verbs which are followed by another verb ending in -ing, or by an infinitive with or without to, etc.

Multiple Choice Exercise
Multiple Choice 2
Fill in gaps
Fill in gaps 2