sábado, 20 de diciembre de 2014

STEREOTYPES

Who wants to be a volunteer?

A parody of the aid campaigns for Africa, full of stereotypes to discuss about. 

Now you have the opportunity to save Africa and become a volunteer. Feed the people, teach how to play football, take a selfie with a native and answer an easy question. Go!


This is a series of parodies created by The Norwegian Students' and Academics' International Assistance Fund http://www.saih.no  with funding from The Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad) in order to change the way fundraising campaigns are communicating issues of poverty and development. You can see the familiar stereotypes of how the African continent tends to be portrayed or the image of the “white hero" who does a favour and saves the poor native.

More videos like these could be seen in  11 of the best aid parodies by the Guardian.
I highlight : Let's save Africa- Go wrong!
                  Tims
                  and the band aid Africa for Norway 

 For more stereotypes about he African culture it's advisable you see a TED talk by Chimawanda Adichie " The dangers of a single story" and do the worksheet about it in my website


domingo, 14 de diciembre de 2014

Keep calm and........

The story of the poster "Keep Calm and Carry on"

You may have found these posters  with different messages all around. This has become an icon of the 21st century, but its origin dates back to war times.





COMPLETE THE BLANKS WITH INFORMATION FROM THE VIDEO.


In the spring of ________, in World War II time, the British Government commissioned ____ propaganda posters which had to be uniform and difficult to ____________ by Germans.  They used _______ colours and the crown of king ______________

The last poster “Keep Calm and Carry on” was never __________ or _________ by the public.

_____ years later a copy of the poster was found  by ________________ in _______________.

It has become an icon of 21st century because it is __________, ____________ and warmhearted, it inspires confidence in difficult times
 

sábado, 22 de noviembre de 2014

THANKSGIVING DAY

Thanksgiving is coming close.

We all know that it's an American festival celebrated on the last Thursday of November. We know about its history, traditions, food. It's shown on TV, series, films, so I'm not going to bore you with long explanations, but click here  or watch the following presentation if you want to know more.

                                       THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY
 
I just want to show you a wonderful video with a rap by Fluency MC about it. His name is Jason R Levine and apart from being a teacher and running a school for international students in New York, he makes songs and videos to teach English. He has a channel in You Tube and a website too.


And remember Black Friday is the next day.


Worksheet on Thanksgiving

lunes, 17 de noviembre de 2014

MOBILE PHONES


A wonderful video parody about the abuse of mobile phones. TABLE MANNERS

CollegeHumor has teamed up with DIRECTV to make 'The Britishes,' a series of sketches parodying Downton Abbey.

Watch the video and answer the following questions:

1. What meal are they having?
2. When did the get their phones?
3.Where was the lady's phone lost?
4. Phones are forbidden: ____ the table, ______ the table or ______the table
5. What  crisis happened at the end? 

Discuss

1. Do you use your phone at the table? 
2. Do you use it when you are with friends or family? 
3. Do you think the idea of piling them up together is a good thing?

miércoles, 22 de octubre de 2014

So creepy......

Are you ready for Halloween?
Get, Set, Go!
Lights Out! 

 Director : Swedish  David F. Sandberg
Winner for best short at Bilbao Fantasy Film Festival 2014 

Tuck me in 

 Director: Spanish Ignacio F. Rodó
 Winner for micro short Filminute 2014

Now you have the inspiration for our Short Story Contest. Enjoy!

To know more about a classical topic at Halloween : ZOMBIES

 

martes, 7 de octubre de 2014

Can you tag me?


ASPIRATIONAL is a short film by Matthew Frost, starring Kristen Dunst who teams up with Vs. Magazine. 
Two fans of Kirsten Dunst hop out of their car on recognizing the actress and start taking selfies with her. She tries to chat with her admirers and invites them to ask questions, but they're only interested in having her tag the pictures so they can improve their own Internet "fame."
Everyone wants their own little piece of fame but this weird cultural trend of selfies has replaced those outdated pen-to-paper autographs. Aspiring to get fame and not to know the admired one. A sign of dehumanization in the world of "Instagrammers".

"It's not really related to the actual film necessarily, but you could say that the two girls are aspiring to be the most popular they can be through social media. It's more about what they can take from her that interests them the most: her celebrity and documenting themselves next to it gets them closer to their goal."   Matthew Frost.

The fans don't care a whit about respecting Dunst's privacy, and just taking an image won't be enough. They believe that by sharing an image with a movie star, even if it's just in a selfie, their own list of followers will rise.
The end of the clip summarizes the main idea and worries us more:  "I've got, like, 15 likes," one girl boasts, and her friend breathlessly replies, "We're going to get so many random followers that we don't even know!"

So next time you want to take a selfie with a celebrity, remember to properly introduce yourself, and have some manners. Try to remember Kristen's expressions in the film.

OPINION

1. What do you think about the video?
2. Do you have a selfie with someone famous?
3. What would you do if you bumped into a celebrity?
4. What do you think about this new trend of selfies?
5. Do you think that selfies are an example of egocentrism, self promotion?


jueves, 8 de mayo de 2014

Technology Madness

We are living in a world full of quick advances in technology. Some are great but others are not so necessary. We live so fast that we are losing important things. 
Most of these advances are related to communication; we have Twitter, Facebook, Whatsapp, the latest mobile phones, but are we making proper use of them or are we wasting our time?
If you want to think it over, watch this special video about some of the dangers of social media and then make a decision. 
                                       
Look up by Gary Turk



domingo, 30 de marzo de 2014

Teen Language

 
Teenagers have always liked to be different from previous generations and one of the best ways of doing it is though language, they invent new words and expressions every day. 
We can see it in their tweets or mobile language. We can listen to it in the street, in songs, in films. 
Someone invents a word, changes its meaning or transforms it and immediately it is widespread and becomes trendy. 

 So, bro, if you don't want to be a dork about language,
 check this list and be hella tope.

Describing people 

BRO / BRA(H) : friend, brother
A N00B : Someone with no interest in learning  (the 00 stand for zeros)
A FRENEMY: Friend+ Enemy (someone who appears to be your friend but at the same time is antagonistic)
A GANSTA: Someone who is cool and tough (from rap culture) 
A WANKSTA: Someone who is trying to be cool
A HATER: Some who is pessimistic and talks constantly about friends and other people 
A CATFISH: Someone who pretends to be someone different.
A ROCKET / A SHAWTY: A very attractive girl.
A GOOF ( TO BE GOOFY) : A silly person
A DORK: an awkward person
A NERD: studious person with few social skills
A JERK: Stupid person.
An EMO: a dramatic person, normally depressed and moody. (from a style of music and fashion) 
A SILVER SURFER: an old person who is keen on computers.

ADJECTIVES  This is the most changing category. 
  • Positive 
    To be TOPE: TIGHT+ DOPE = extremely good, beyond cool.
To be CRUNK. crazy+drunk= awesome
To be MEGA/SUPER = Extremely
To be SNUG: very cool
To be FLY:  cool, attractive, HIP
To be CRAY CRAY: crazy
To be CHILLIN' / CHILLAXIN : To be relaxing
To be SICK/ ILL: to be cool, awesome, delicious
To be MATCHY MATCHY: to be trendy with matching clothes and accessories.
To be BLING BLING: To be great, cool.
  • Negative
To be SALTY: angry, annoying
To be CHEESY/ CHEESEY: to have  very low quality
To be BUSTED:  to be ugly
To be H: to be "hardcore" very intense




OTHER COMMON EXPRESSIONS

CHEDDAR (not a type of cheese) = money, cash
A RIDE ( Not a car) =  Special brand, expensive sneakers
To FRIEND/ UNFRIEND ( adding or removing someone from social networks)
MY BAD= My fault, I made a mistake.
'SUP= What's up?
DOWN= To do something with someone, to agree on doing it. 
MY MAINS= close group of friends or family 
TO BOUNCE= to leave
A SELFIE= a self portrait with mobile or computer.    
HELLA= really  
TO SUCK= To be very bad
TO ROCK= to be great
A HICKEY= a love mark, from kissing (suck on the skin)
TO PLAY HOOKY/ HOOKEY= not to attend school or some classes without permission
A ZA= a pizza
THE MUFFIN TOP= excess fat falling from you belly.

SHORTENINGS AND ABREVIATIONS

MOS-DOS-POS (Mom,Dad, Parents over shoulder) Parents watching you or around you
Ttyl = Talk to you later
G2g = got to go
LOL= Laugh out loud
YOLO= You only live once
OMG = Oh My God / Gosh
BF / GF = boyfriend, girlfriend
BF4L= Best friends for life

EXERCISES

1. CHANGE THE SENTENCES INTO TEEN LANGUAGE

a) It would be great if you give me some money
b) My mother always matches her out fit with her earrings and high-heels.
c) I discovered that my friend, who seemed very cool, was a real enemy.
d) My girlfriend is very attractive.
e) I know a girl who is very crazy and stupid. I am going to remove her from my FB.

2. COMPLETE USING TEEN LANGUAGE

a) Please, don't talk about my ...................., you have to be respectful to my family.
b) I don't feel very well. I have to .................... from here.
c) Don't step on my .......................... They are brand new.
d) Don't be a ................... Study and get a job!
c) I met a ......................... at the party who was  pretending to be .................... but he was really ....................

domingo, 2 de marzo de 2014

PANCAKE DAY / SHROVE TUESDAY

The last Tuesday before Lent is called Shrove Tuesday or Pancake Day. It is a British tradition but it's also celebrated in other countries. 
Why is it called Pancake Day? It's a custom to eat pancakes on this date. Lent represents a time of  abstinence and pancakes contain all the things that aren't allowed during this period: fat, eggs, butter, milk, sugar. So people indulge themshelves eating them. 

The word shrove is the past tense of the English verb shrive, which means to obtain absolution for one's sins by way of Confession and doing penance. Thus Shrove Tuesday gets its name from the custom for Christians to be "shriven" before the start of Lent.
This is also the time for carnival ( Latin  carne levare = to take away meat) or Mardi Grass (French "Fat Tuesday").
People celebrate it having parties or wearing all kinds of fancy dresses and eating different things: 
- Iceland : salted meat and peas
- Sweden: pastry called semla
- Finland: pea soup and whipped-cream filled buns.
- What do you eat in Spain?  T_ _ _ _ _ _ S

In Britain it is traditional  to hold pancake races all over the country but the most famous one and the origen of it is held in Olney, Buckinghamshire.


This famous pancake race has been held since 1445. The contestants, traditionally women, carry a frying pan and race to over a 415 yard course to the finishing line. The rules are strict: contestants have to toss their pancake at both the start and the finish, as well as wear an apron and a headscarf.  The race is followed by a church service. 


Do you feel like making pancakes and celebrating too? Here is a pancake recipe
and a video too.

If you want to know more about this traditional date, click on the following links: 

* Project Britain: a wonderful web with lots of information about Shrove Tuesday, Lent,   Easter, Pancakes and how it is celebrated all over the world.
* Sandy Millin´s Blog: with lots of activities to do about it.

lunes, 10 de febrero de 2014

SAINT VALENTINE´S DAY

We all know about Saint Valentine's story, we already know about the origin of the celebration. 
You can agree on it or not but it's obvious it doesn't go unnoticed every year.
Whether you celebrate it or not, it's a good opportunity to listen to a good and romantic song. 

Annie's Song was written and sung by John Denver in 1974, it was a tribute to his wife when he was climbing a mountain in Aspen, Colorado. He felt the beauty of the landscape and that "filled all his senses" and made him think about his wife. 

John Denver was born in New Mexico in 1943, he was a folk/ country singer and composer but also an activist worried about wildlife and environment. He died in a plane crash into the Pacific ocean in 1997.   

ANNIE'S SONG 


1. Listen to the song and complete the blanks with the following words:
be- laughter- lay- die- arms -drown- give- love- senses- night- forest- mountains- walk
desert- springtime- rain- storm- ocean- sleepy 

You fill up my .............
Like a .............. in the ................
Like the ..................... in ............................
Like a .................... in the ......................
Like a ...................  in the .....................
Like a ................... blue ...........................
You fill up my senses, come fill me again.
Come let me ............... you
Let me ................ my life to you.
Let me .................... in your ......................
Let me .................... in your .....................
Let me ................ down beside you
Let me always ........ with you.
Come let me love you 
Come love me again 

2. Write down all the prepositions you find: 

3. Discuss
  1. What do you think about love songs?
  2. Are they so romantic now?
  3. Mention any romantic songs/ ballads you know and their singers
  4. What do you feel when you listen to  a song like this?
  5. Do you celebrate Saint Valentine's Day? Do you agree with it?
Click on the following link  if  you want to know IDIOMS RELATED TO LOVE

A different activity with the song My Valentine by Paul MacCartney

 

domingo, 2 de febrero de 2014

MAKE and DO

Are you worried about learning the collocations with MAKE and DO?
Tired of learning lists and do exercises?.
Listen to Fluency MC,  Relax, Repeat and Remember!
Rap Song Gangnam Style


If you click on this link, you will listen to the original RAP Version 


sábado, 4 de enero de 2014

SLANG ENGLISH

Would you like to know more about English Slang, how British people really talk in the street? You'll be gobsmacked!
Click on the following blog and do some practice

The Smart Blog: Popular UK Slang

Are you knackered or shattered at this point? Listen to One Direction teaching you to speak "Real" British English.



Listen to Hugh Laurie ( Dr House) contrasting UK slang with USA slang, you'll be chuffed.



Don't get barmy about it and be wicked. See ya!