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Monday, 27 December 2010

THE DIGITAL STORY OF THE NATIVITY 2.0



This is the way how social media, web and mobile tell the story of the Nativity.Christmas story told through Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google, Wikipedia, Google Maps, GMail, Foursquare, Amazon... Warch the video.
Video of Digital Nativity 2.0.:


Sunday, 19 December 2010

2010 CHRISTMAS SONGS (&4): ANNIE LENNOX, "GOD REST YE MERRY GENTLEMEN"

Another voice that singing Christmas is Annie Lennox (former leader of 80's British pop duo Eurythmics). This year she has released her fourth solo-album devoted entirely to cover Christmas classic songs, here's "GOD REST YE MERRY GENTLEMEN".
Video "GOD REST YE MERRY GENTLEMEN":

Audio + lyrics of the same song in another version:

Saturday, 18 December 2010

2010 CHRISTMAS SONGS (3): COLDPLAY, "CHRISTMAS LIGHTS"




Another new 2010 Christmas song entering to be British nº1 hit this Christmas: Coldplay with "Christmas lights".

Lyrics of "CHRISTMAS LIGHTS" - Coldplay

Christmas night, another fight
Tears we cried a flood
Got all kinds of poison in
Poison in my blood
I took my feet
To Oxford Street
Trying to right a wrong
Just walk away
Those windows say
But I can't believe she's gone

When you're still waiting for the snow to fall
Doesn't really feel like Christmas at all
Up above candles on air flicker
Oh they flicker and they float
But I'm up here holding on
To all those chandeliers of hope
Like some drunken Elvis singing
I go singing out of tune
Saying how I always loved you darling
And I always will

Oh when you're still waiting for the snow to fall
Doesn't really feel like Christmas at all
Still waiting for the snow to fall
It doesn't really feel like Christmas at all

Those Christmas lights
Light up the street
Down where the sea and city meet
May all your troubles soon be gone
Oh Christmas lights keep shining on

Those Christmas lights
Light up the street
Maybe they'll bring her back to me
Then all my troubles will be gone
Oh Christmas lights keep shining on
Oh Christmas lights
Light up the street
Light up the fireworks in me
May all your troubles soon be gone
Oh Christmas lights keep shining on

Video of "CHRISTMAS LIGHTS", Coldplay:


2010 CHRISTMAS SONGS (2): KYLIE MINOGUE'S 2010 VERSION OF "LET IT SNOW"




Another Christmas song for 2010 is Kylie's version of an all-time Christmas classic "LET IT SNOW". "Let It Snow", is a song written by lyricist Sammy Cahn and composer Jule Styne in 1945. It was written in July 1945 in Hollywood. First recorded by Vaughn Monroe, it became a popular hit, reaching number one on the Billboard music chart the following year. One of the best-selling songs of all time, "Let It Snow!" has been covered countless times. Due to its seasonal lyrics, it is commonly regarded as a Christmas song. Yet despite its cheery, holiday feel, it is a love song that never mentions Christmas. Here's the latest by Kylie 2010.
Video "LET IT SNOW", Kylie Minogue live at the Rockefeller Center 30-Nov-2010:

Audio "LET IT SNOW", Kylie Minogue + lyrics:

Thursday, 16 December 2010

2010 CHRISTMAS SONGS (1): HURTS, "ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS NEW YEAR'S DAY"

In Britain there's a struggle every Christmas among singers and pop groups to become the number 1 bestselling single in the charts during the Christmas holidays. So, every year, many of the greatest artists of the moment try to reach number 1 on Christmas Eve. Today we post one of this year's contestants: It's the British group Hurts again. December 14th was the release daet of the single "ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS NEW YEAR'S DAY".

Video "ALL I WANT FOR XMAS IS NEW YEAR'S DAY", Hurts:

Lyrics* "ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS NEW YEAR'S DAY", Hurts:
*Mistakes of the lyrics in this video:
where it says: "all of the pass waiting out for Christmas"
should say: "All of the bells ringing out for Christmas"

Thursday, 9 December 2010

SPANISH AIR TRAFFIC CONTROLLERS BRING AIRPORTS AND SKIES TO A COMPLETE STANDSTILL AT LAST WEEKEND'S 5-DAY-LONG BANK-HOLIDAY



Spain's last 5-day-off period before Christmas has become a complete chaos as the Spanish air-traffic controllers walked out of their job-posts last Friday in the middle of a busy travelling weekend. Air traffic didn't get back to normal until the army took control of the situation, but when already many passengers were stranded at the airports not being able to fly. Here are videos of the news.


Videos on Spanish air-traffic controllers crisis:




Wednesday, 20 October 2010

FIFTEEN OF OUR SCHOOLMATES HAVE SET OFF TO NUREMBERG TODAY ON A STUDENT'S EXCHANGE TRIP


Fifteen students of 4ºESO from IES Rafael Dieste and two of our teachers have set off today for a ten-day stay in Nuremberg (Germany). They go on the first part of our course exchange that has been going on now for several (6) years. Our students will be staying in the houses and with the families of another fifteen German students and attending classes at the Willstätter Gymnasium at that German city. In Spring 2011, as usual, our school will receive the German students for the second part of the exhange. We hope our students have a good trip and enjoy their stay.


Nuremberg (German: Nürnberg) is a city in the German state of Bavaria, in the administrative region of Middle Franconia. It is situated on the Pegnitz river and the Rhine–Main–Danube Canal and is Franconia's largest city. It is located about 170 kilometres north of Munich. The population (as of January 2006) is 500,132. The urban area of Nuremberg has 1.2 million inhabitants.

Thursday, 14 October 2010

"STAY": ANOTHER HURTS SONG TO SING ALONG



Today, another song by Hurts to sing along: "STAY".
Video "STAY"+lyrics:

Official video of the song "STAY" by Hurts:

Sunday, 10 October 2010

JAMES BLUNT IS BACK, HERE'S HIS NEW SINGLE



British songwriter & singer James Blunt is back. James Blunt (born James Hillier Blount; 22 February 1974) is the stage name adopted by the Grammy Award-nominated English singer-songwriter whose debut album, "Back to Bedlam" and single releases, including "You're Beautiful" and "Goodbye My Lover", brought him to fame in 2005. His repertoire is a mix of acoustic-tinged pop, rock and folk. Blunt won two BRIT Awards, two Ivor Novello Awards, and by 2006 was nominated for five Grammy Awards. The following year, he released his second album "All The Lost Souls" (2007). Blunt's third studio album, "Some Kind of Trouble", is due to be released in November 2010.
Blunt was an officer in the Life Guards, a Cavalry regiment of the British Army, and served under NATO in Kosovo during the conflict there in 1999. While posted to Kosovo, Blunt was introduced to the work of Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF or "Doctors Without Borders"). Since then, Blunt has supported MSF by holding meet-and-greet auctions at many of his concerts. Blunt's primary residence is now on the Spanish island of Ibiza.
Here is his new single "Stay the night" on its official video and audio with lyrics to sing along.
Video "STAY THE NIGHT", JAMES BLUNT:

Audio "STAY THE NIGHT" +lyrics:

Saturday, 9 October 2010

JOHN LENNON WOULD HAVE BEEN 70 TODAY



John Winston Ono Lennon, MBE (9 October 1940 – 8 December 1980) was an English singer-songwriter who rose to worldwide fame as one of the founding members of The Beatles and, with Paul McCartney, formed one of the most successful songwriting partnerships of the 20th century.
Born and raised in Liverpool, Lennon became involved in the skiffle craze as a teenager, his first band, The Quarrymen, evolving into The Beatles in 1960. As the group began to undergo the disintegration that led to their break-up towards the end of that decade, Lennon launched a solo career that would span the next, punctuated by critically acclaimed albums, including John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band and Imagine, and iconic songs such as "Give Peace a Chance" and "Imagine".
Lennon revealed a rebellious nature and acerbic wit in his music, his writing, on film, and in interviews, and became controversial through his work as a peace activist. He moved to New York City in 1971, where his criticism of the Vietnam War resulted in a lengthy attempt by Richard Nixon's administration to deport him, while his songs were adapted as anthems by the anti-war movement. Disengaging himself from the music business in 1975 to devote time to his family, Lennon reemerged in 1980 with a comeback album, Double Fantasy, but was murdered three weeks after its release.
Lennon's solo album sales in the United States alone stand at 14 million units, and as performer, writer, or co-writer he is responsible for 27 number one singles on the US Hot 100 chart. In 2002, a BBC poll on the 100 Greatest Britons voted him eighth, and in 2008, Rolling Stone ranked him the fifth greatest singer of all time. He was posthumously inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fam in 1987 and into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994.

Thursday, 7 October 2010

NOBEL LITERATURE PRIZE TO SPANISH LANGUAGE LITERATURE: MARIO VARGAS LLOSA



Jorge Mario Pedro Vargas Llosa (born March 28, 1936) is a Peruvian-Spanish writer, politician, journalist, essayist and 2010 Nobel Prize laureate. Vargas Llosa is one of Latin America's most significant novelists and essayists, and one of the leading authors of his generation. Some critics consider him to have had a larger international impact and worldwide audience than any other writer of the Latin American Boom. He was awarded the 2010 Nobel Prize in Literature "for his cartography of structures of power and his trenchant images of the individual's resistance, revolt, and defeat".
Vargas Llosa rose to fame in the 1960s with novels such as The Time of the Hero (La ciudad y los perros, literally The City and the Dogs, 1963/1966), The Green House (La casa verde, 1965/1968), and the monumental Conversation in the Cathedral (Conversación en la catedral, 1969/1975). He continues to write prolifically across an array of literary genres, including literary criticism and journalism. His novels include comedies, murder mysteries, historical novels, and political thrillers. Several, such as Captain Pantoja and the Special Service (1973/1978) and Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter (1977/1982), have been adapted as feature films.
Video Nobel Prize announcement 2010:

Saturday, 2 October 2010

"EVERYBODY'S GOT TO LEARN SOMETIME", SHARON CORR & THE KORGIS

"Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime" is originally a hit single from the pop group The Korgis. The song was released in 1980 from the album "Dumb Waiters". This was the peak of The Korgis's success, peaking at #5 in the UK Singles Chart. "Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime" is currently the second single by Irish singer–songwriter Sharon Corr from her debut solo album "Dream of You". Sharon Corr was one of the original members from Irish family-group The Corrs, who are a Celtic folk rock band from Dundalk, Ireland. The group consists of the Corr siblings: Andrea (lead vocals, tin whiste); Sharon (violin, vocals); Caroline (drums, piano, bodhrán, vocals); and Jim (guitar, piano, vocals).
Today we present the original song by the Korgis with the lyrics and the video by Sharon Corr.
Video with lyrics "EVERYBODY0S GOT TO LEARN SOMETIME"; Korgis version:

Video "EVERYBODY'S GOT TO LEARN SOMETIME" by Sharon Corr
(Video shot in Nerja and the Alhambra of Granada):

Thursday, 30 September 2010

ALBERTO CONTADOR POSITIVE ON DOPING TEST

Surprising information on the news this morning. Three-time Tour de France champion Alberto Contador blamed contaminated meat Thursday for his positive doping test during this year's race, the latest blow to a sport battered by drug scandals. We include a video-report on the subject.
Video-report on Contador's doping positive:

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

SPAIN ON STRIKE



Here's a report from CNN previous to the strike-day in Spain held today. Watch and listen, see how much you understand.

A video from today:

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

NADAL SPEAKING IN ENGLISH AFTER WINNING THE U.S. OPEN ON SEPT 14th




Rafael "Rafa" Nadal Parera (born 3 June 1986) is a Spanish professional tennis player currently ranked No. 1 in the world. He is regarded as one the greatest players of all time. Nadal has won nine Grand Slam singles titles, the 2008 Olympic gold medal in singles, a record 18 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournaments and also was part of the Spain Davis Cup team that won the finals in 2004, 2008 and 2009. He completed the career Grand Slam by winning the 2010 US Open, being the 7th player in history, and the youngest in the open era, to achieve it. He is the second male player to complete the Career Golden Slam (winner of the four grand slams and the Olympic Gold medal).
Nadal was ranked World No. 2, behind Roger Federer for a record 160 consecutive weeks before earning the top spot, which he then held from 18 August 2008 to 5 July 2009. He regained the World No.1 ranking on 7 June 2010 after winning his fifth French Open title.In 2008, Nadal was given the Prince of Asturias Award for Sports, in recognition of his achievements in tennis.
We have found a video of Rafa speaking in English after winning the U.S. Open. Do you understand him? Do you think he speaks English well? Give you opinions & comments.
Video Rafa Nadal:

Another video:

Friday, 24 September 2010

29th SEPT: THE ECONOMIC CRISIS BRINGS SRIKES THROUGHOUT EUROPE


The European Trade Union Confederation has called an international day of workers' action for 29 September. The coordinated protests, action and general strikes, have the potential to shake the continent.
The Committee for a Workers' International (CWI) will work enthusiastically to mobilise workers and youth to take action on the day, under the banner of international struggle and solidarity, against Europe's axe-wielding governments and the dictatorship of the capitalist markets.
The attacks implemented across the continent in most cases represent the most brutal austerity programmes implemented in living memory. The devastating policies of the Greek government have meant dramatic attacks on the already impoverished Greek working class.
A real cut of between 30% and 50% in public pensions and public-sector wages slashed by between 25% and 30% have been emulated in Spain and Portugal.
The Spanish government's austerity package will see public-sector wages and pensions attacked, as well as a €55 billion public spending cuts programme.
In Portugal, where workers receive among the lowest wages in Europe (with a monthly minimum wage of only €475), public sector workers are being hit with a four-year pay freeze and a raising of the retirement age to 67.
In Britain the Con-Dem coalition government has announced a package which includes attacks on social benefits and savage cuts of 25% or more in every area of public spending. Angela Merkel's coalition government in Germany is set to slash €80 billion in the next four years.
Greece has recently been the epicentre of developments in Europe. However, as well as the near collapse of its state finances, it is the tidal wave of struggle - with six general strikes in 2010 - that has put it at the centre of developments. This has aroused the fighting instincts of workers around the continent.
Massive strikes and demonstrations have been seen in France where two million took to the streets to defend pensions. Italy, where a general strike against the government took place in July, is braced for a significant national demonstration on 16 October organised by the FIOM, a metal workers' union, which has led the way in putting forward a militant strategy in fighting attacks on wages and conditions.
On 29 September Spain will be shaken by its first full general strike in response to the devastating crisis that has left over four million unemployed and to the anti-working class reaction of its government.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

ANA TORROJA IS BACK. DO YOU KNOW THAT SHE HAS SUNG IN ENGLISH?



One of the most singular voices in Spanish music is back. After a long time without any new songs and recovering from a serious car accident, Ana Torroja is back in the music business with a brand new record: "SONRISA" ("Smile").
Ana Torroja (born December 28, 1959 in Madrid) is a Grammy Award-nominated Spanish singer. She is the lead singer of the pop trio Mecano, considered one of the most popular pop bands from Spain during 1980's and 90's. In 1998 Mecano separated, and she kept a solo career. Ana has sung in Spanish, Italian and French, with Mecano. But she has also sung in English and that's why we can post her here today. In 2003, on her third solo-album "FRÁGIL" ("Fragile"), Ana covered a Pink Floyd's classic song "WISH YOU WERE HERE". Today we include the audio of this song by Ana with subtitled lyrics.
Audio "WISH YOU WERE HERE", Ana Torroja (+ subtitles):

PAUL, THE PREDICTING OCTUPUS, RETIRES

UPDATED: HE HAS DIED


Yesterday, we talked about this summer's top news in Spain: winning the Football World Cup 2010. Today we've learnt, from another English teacher's blog from Neda's Secondary School " that Paul, the predicting octupus is to retire. Here's the news from that blog:

[englisharound.blogspot.com]
One of the stars of the South Africa World Cup is retiring - Paul the predicting octopus!

Paul lives at an aquarium in Germany and correctly predicted the results of all seven of Germany's games as well as the Spain v Netherlands final. When the tournament ended, staff presented him with his own model of the World Cup trophy, complete with treats. But now the aquarium says Paul will now retire to do what he likes best - play with his handlers and delight visitors.

Spokeswoman Tanja Munzig said: "He won't give any more oracle predictions - either in football, nor in politics, lifestyle or economy. "Paul will get back to his former job, namely making children laugh." During the tournament, Paul made his predictions by choosing a snack from one of two glasses that were put in his tank showing the flags of the sides playing.

Monday, 20 September 2010

SPEAKING ENGLISH IN THE ENGLISH CLASS




Here's some help for you to be able to understand and speak in the English classroom:
- WHAT THE TEACHER SAYS:
Open your books (on page...).
Close your books.
Write it down! - Take this down! - Copy this into your notebooks!
Get your notebooks / workbook / student's book! - Get a sheet of paper!
Think! - Spell. - Read loud. - Choose. - Check / Correct.
Listen (to the CD) / Listen and repeat.

Come on...
Has everybody got (a)....?
Draw a circle / cross / tick...
Underline this word.

Look at the blackboard. - Come to the blackboard.
Come on, everybody. Now look at me.
Listen to me! - You aren't listening to me.
Pay attention! - Can I have you attention, please / for a minute?
Stop it!
Be quiet! - Shut up! - Silence, please!

Ask me if you don't understand.
Tell me if it's true or false.
Tell me if you find it too difficult.
Put up / Raise your hand if you don't understand.

You need... to do this.
Do this at home. - This is for homework. - Do it for next Monday.
Finish this exercise for homework, please.
Try to find an example of...
Try to finish this before...
When you finish, revise your exercise before you give it to me.
Please, get into groups of 3 / 4 students / pairs. Make groups of 3 or 4 students.

Let's check / correct the exercise now.
Let's sum up what we've seen today.
Don't worry about...
Now we're going to...

- WHAT STUDENTS MAY NEED TO SAY:
Good morning / afternoon. - Hello / Hi
Good bye / Bye bye. - See you tomorrow / on... / soon.

Excuse me...
What's this in English? / How do you say "---" in English?
How do you spell "---" (in English)?
What does "---" mean? - What's the meaning of "---"? - What's the English / Spanish word for "---"?
I'm sorry. - Sorry, I'm late. - Sorry, I forgot my...
I don't understand. - I don't know. -
I'm sorry / afraid, I don't know / understand / haven't understood the question / I don't know what you mean / I've no idea / I'm not sure
Is this OK / right? - Is it correct / right?
Can / May I come in?
Can / May I go to the toilet?
Can / May I open / close the window / blinds?
Can / Could / Would you repeat / say it again? - Pardon? - I'm sorry I didn't hear / catch what you said. - I'm sorry, what did you say?
Can / Could / Would you explain it again / write it on the blackboard / spell it... please?
Can / Could / Would you speak louder / more slowly, please?

Friday, 17 September 2010

THE BLOG RE-OPENS FOR THE 2010-2011 ACADEMIC YEAR. WELCOME BACK!



Here we are once again: back to school! This blog's second year opens up as a new school course opens, too.
A new course which the Rafael Dieste Secondary School receives with many changes. A complete new school organization will start. There won't be one class for each group any more. Now the classrooms will depend on the subject. Each subject/teacher will have its own classroom. Students will have to change from one classroom to another for each session. We'll see how long it takes to get used to the new system and if students, teachers like it or not.
Also this course, Rafael Dieste Secondary School has been selected as one of the two public schools in the city of Coruña to be named a Plurilingual School. This means that, from this year onwards, starting at 1st ESO, all students in this school will have, apart from the English class, other subjects in the English language. This year 1st ESO students will have Physical Education and Interdisciplinary Project in English. (A total of 6 hours in English every week). In following years this will be introduced in higher levels.
Hoping that you all have a successful year, welcome back!

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

SCHOOL'S OVER. IT'S SUMMER HOLIDAYS, AT LAST!!


School's over, at last!!! The summer holidays are here!!!
This blog closes down for this school year. In September we'll be back with more...
Meanwhile, have a nice holiday and enjoy...!!!

Monday, 21 June 2010

HERE IS SUMMER!




As the Beatles songs says... "Here comes the sun"... because it's summertime already!

Audio "HERE COMES THE SUN", by The Beatles (+lyrics):

Monday, 14 June 2010

IT'S TIME FOR FOOTBALL: 2010 WORLD CUP, SOUTH AFRICA.



In blue, countries qualified for the World Cup Finals 2010



I'm not a football fan, but I must admit that during the following days, football is going to be an important part in everyday's life. Here's some information about the 2010 World Cup:
The 2010 FIFA World Cup is the 19th and current FIFA World Cup, the premier international association football tournament. It is being held in South Africa, beginning on 11 June and scheduled to conclude on 11 July 2010. The tournament is the culmination of a qualification process that began in August 2007 and involved 204 of the 208 FIFA national teams. As such, it matches the 2008 Summer Olympics as the sports event with the most competing nations. The final is forecast to be among the most-watched events ever, possibly behind only the opening ceremony of the 2008 Olympic Games.
This is the first time that the tournament has been hosted by an African nation, after South Africa defeated Morocco and Egypt in an all-African bidding process. Italy are the defending champions, after winning the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany. The draw for the finals took place on 4 December 2009 in Cape Town.

Sunday, 6 June 2010

SCOTTISH-GIRL, AMY McDONALD SANG TODAY AT ROCK IN RIO, MADRID 2010



Amy @ RockInRio, Madrid 2010

Amy Macdonald (born 25 August 1987 in Bishopbriggs, Scotland) is a Scottish singer and songwriter. Her debut album, "This Is the Life", was released on 30 July 2007 and has sold more than 3 million copies.
Macdonald started playing on stage acoustic gigs at 15. She has played at music festivals such as Glastonbury, Hyde Park Calling, T in the Park and the V Festival.
The second album, titled "A Curious Thing", was released on 8 March 2010. It was preceded by the release of the first single, "Don't Tell Me That It's Over", a week earlier on 1 March 2010. The single was released to UK radio on 11 January.
Today she has performed at the Arganda del Rey stage for the Rock In Rio Festival, Madrid 2010. We enclose her live performance of her best known hit and a video with the lyrics to sing along.
Video lyrics of "THIS IS THE LIFE":

Video Amy's performance of the song at RockInRio, Madrid (06/06/2010):

Saturday, 29 May 2010

GOODBYE TO ANOTHER GROUP OF STUDENTS FROM RAFAEL DIESTE SECONDARY SCHOOL



Last night we rolled out the red carpet once again in front of our school's main entrance to receive our 2ºBAC students in their Farewell-Graduation party. Students, parents and teachers gathered together to celebrate the end of these students' life in our school. Everybody elegantly dressed took part in a celebration where we took photos, listened to speeches, danced, sang, laughed -or even shed a tear or two. After a snack and a chocolate fondue, the students continued partying... To all of them, good luck!

Friday, 14 May 2010

ERNEST HEMINGWAY, THE BIOGRAPHY



Here is a sample answer to the writing exercise of Ernest Hemingway's biography:


Ernest Hemingway was born in Illinois, a suburb of Chicago, in 1899. He had a middle-class upbringing, as his father was a doctor. However all his life he rebelled against the morals of his parents and the conventions of life in Chicago.
He graduated from High School in 1917, but, being impatient for a less sheltered environment, he didn't go to college. Instead, he went to Kansas City, where he was employed as a reporter for a leading newspaper, "The Star", and this gave him invaluable vocational training.
He wanted to be soldier, but was rejected for military service because he had poor eyesight, so he became an ambulance driver for the American Red Cross. He was injured in World War I, and also decorated for heroism.
He was fascinated by war, working as a war correspondent in Spain, China and Europe, and many of his books were about war, For Whom the Bell Tolls, his most succesful book, was written in 1940, and is about a volunteer American soldier in the Spanish Civil War. This book dealt with the comradeship of war, while A Farewell to Arms is about the pointlessness of war.
He won the Nobel prize for literature in 1954, but he suffered from depression towards the end of his life. He loved life, although he was obsessed with death, and he committed suicide in 1961.

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

PASSIVE vs ACTIVE

The passive voice is used when we want to focus attention on the person or thing affected by the action.
Normally, the performer of the action, or the agent, comes first and is made the subject of the verb and then we use the active form of the verb. The other person or thing is made the object of the verb. Consider these examples:
'The boss invited her to the party.'
'The construction company in Station Road employs three hundred people.'
However, if you want to focus on the person or thing affected by the action, you make the person or thing the subject of the sentence and use the passive voice:
'She was invited to the party by the boss.'
'Three hundred people are employed by the construction company in Station Road.'
When, then, should we use the passive voice in preference to the active?
We often prefer to use the passive voice when:
1. We do not know who the agent is:
'I don’t know who did it, but my pet rabbit has been let out.'
'I had the feeling that I was being followed.'
instead of:

'I don’t know who did it, but someone has let out my pet rabbit.'
'I had the feeling that somebody was following me.'

2.When it is obvious to the listener or reader who the agent is:
'I had been instructed to remove all the ash trays.'
'She discovered that she was being paid less than her male colleagues.'
instead of:

'My boss had instructed me to remove all the ash trays.'
'She discovered that the firm was paying her less than her male colleagues.'

3. When it is not important to know who the agent is:
'Do you want a lift?' 'No thanks, I’m being collected.' instead of:
'Do you want a lift?' 'No thanks, someone is collecting me.'
4. When the agent has already been mentioned:
'In the next session of parliament, new laws will be introduced aimed at stopping domestic violence.' instead of:
'In the next session of parliament, the government will introduce new laws aimed at stopping domestic violence.'
5. When people in general are the agents:
'All the Beatles records can be borrowed from the central library. instead of:
'You can borrow all the Beatles records from the central library.


Here is a complete list of all the verb forms that are normally used in the passive.
Passive forms are made up of an appropriate form of the verb ‘to be’ followed by the past participle (pp) form of the verb:

Present simple am/is/are + ppHow is this word pronounced?
Present continuous am/are/is being + ppThe house is being redecorated.
Present perfect simple has/have been + pp
He's just been sacked!
Past simple was/were + ppAll his credit cards were stolen last week.
Past continuous was/were being + ppHe was being treated for depression when he won the lottery.
Past perfect simple had been + pp
The vegetables had been cooked for far too long, but we had to eat them.
Future simple will be + pp
The house contents will be auctioned a week on Saturday.
Future perfect simple will have been + pp
There’s no point in hurrying. It will all have been eaten by now.
Infinitive (to) be + ppExams have to be taken almost every year you are at school.
Do you know who is going to be invited?


Links to exercises:

Monday, 3 May 2010

RAFAEL DIESTE'S GREEK WEEK


Our students dancing the syrtaki at the Greek Week in our central indoor hall.


Greek week at Rafael Dieste Secondary School on PhotoPeach





Note: The song that sounds during the photo-slide is "Syrtaki" ("Siko Chorepse Syrtaki"), it was written by Greek composers G. Zambetas & A. Sakelarios. It's the same song which our mate-students danced to at school. This version is sung by Swedish singer Frida (Anni-Frid Lyngstad), best known as one of the girls in Swedish pop group Abba, the red-haired one. Her version is sung in Swedish and belongs to her 1975 solo-album "Frida ensam" ("Frida alone").

PRACTICE CONDITIONALS: KATIE MELUA, "IF YOU WERE A SAILBOAT"

Katie Melua




Ketevan "Katie" Melua (English pronunciation: /mɛˈluː.ə/),born 16 September 1984, is a Georgian-British singer, songwriter and musician. She was born in Georgia, but moved to Northern Ireland at the age of eight and then relocated to England at the age of fourteen.In November 2003, at the age of nineteen, Melua released her first album, Call off the Search, which reached the top of the United Kingdom album charts and sold 1.8 million copies in its first five months of release. Her second album, Piece by Piece, was released in September 2005. Melua released her third studio album Pictures in October 2007, which was the last of her albums to be made in collaboration with Mike Batt. In May 2010 she's about to release her fourth album The House.



The song we listen today was the first single from the album Pictures, and it's full of second type conditionals.




Video "If I were sailboat", Katie Melua:



"If you were a sailboat" lyrics:
IF YOU WERE A COWBOY, I WOULD TRAIL YOU
IF YOU WERE A PIECE OF WOOD, I'D NAIL YOU TO THE FLOOR
IF YOU WERE A SAILBOAT, I WOULD SAIL YOU TO THE SHORE.

IF YOU WERE A RIVER, I WOULD SWIM YOU
IF YOU WERE A HOUSE, I WOULD LIVE IN YOU ALL MY DAYS
IF YOU WERE A PREACHER, I'D BEGIN TO CHANGE MY WAYS.

Chorus:
SOMETIMES I BELIEVE IN FATE
BUT THE CHANCES WE CREATE
ALWAYS SEEM TO RING MORE TRUE
YOU TOOK A CHANCE ON LOVING ME
I TOOK A CHANCE ON LOVING YOU.

IF I WAS IN JAIL, I KNOW YOU'D SPRING ME
IF I WAS A TELEPHONE, YOU'D RING ME ALL DAY LONG
IF I WAS IN PAIN, I KNOW YOU'D SING ME SOOTHING SONGS.

(Rep chorus)

IF I WAS HUNGRY, YOU WOULD FEED ME
IF I WAS IN DARKNESS, YOU WOULD LEAD ME TO THE LIGHT
IF I WAS A BOOK, I KNOW YOU'D READ ME EVERY NIGHT

(Rep first paragraph)

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

"SWEET DREAMS", EURYTHMICS (The song we heard at the "McBeth's" theatre-play)

Eurythmics (Annie Lennox & Dave Stewart)

During Tuesday's theatre play "McBeth's", we heard the melody of this famous 1983 hit by Eurythmics. Of course, it was a version, as the lyrics were adapted to the play. But it gives us the opportunity to remember this hit.
Eurythmics are a British musical duo, formed in 1980 by Scottish front woman Annie Lennox and English musician Dave Stewart. The pair have achieved significant global, commercial and critical success, selling 75 million records worldwide, winning numerous awards, and have undertaken several successful world tours. They are Britain's biggest selling duo, and are noted for their songs that showcase Lennox's powerful and expressive alto voice and Stewart's innovative production techniques. They are also acclaimed for their promotional videos and visual presentation.
"Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)" is the second album by the duo, released on January 21, 1983. After almost two years of initial commercial failure for them, this album became a commercial breakthrough for the duo on both sides of the Atlantic. The title track became particularly popular and it remains one of Eurythmics' most recognisable songs, and its music video, popular on MTV in the United States, is memorable for Annie Lennox's gender-bending imagery.
Video "Sweet Dreams":

Lyrics "Sweet Dreams":

Sweet dreams are made of this
Who am I to disagree?
I travel the world and the seven seas
Everybody's looking for something
Some of them want to use you
Some of them want to get used by you
Some of them want to abuse you
Some of them want to be abused
Sweet dreams are made of this
Who am I to disagree?
I travel the world and the seven seas
Everybody's looking for something
Hold your head up, movin' on
Keep your head up, movin' on
Hold your head up, movin' on
Keep your head up, movin' on
Hold your head up, movin' on
Keep your head up, movin' on
Movin' on!

Some of them want to use you
Some of them want to get used by you
Some of them want to abuse you
Some of them want to be abused
Hold your head up, movin' on
Keep your head up, movin' on
Hold your head up, movin' on
Keep your head up, movin' on
Hold your head up, movin' on
Keep your head up, movin' on
Movin' on!

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

OUR VISIT TO A THEATRE-PLAY IN ENGLISH




These last two days, students from our school have been to watch a theatre play in English performed by face2face theatre company. The plays were performed at a nearby school, these were the plays:
MONDAY, "SUPERLOSERS":
Ex-Super Hero, Jack Lipshitz is faced with a new mission to clean up the streets after years of retirement. A freak accident at Sci-Tech Technologies turns Eco-Scientist, Dr. Einsteen into the evil Bag Lady, a deformed and powerful villain. To save the world from the evil Bag Lady, Super Loser must return to school to regain his super powers. With the help of his new super friends he will take on the Bag Lady and her cohorts. Will Bag Lady succeed with her demonic plan? Or will Super Loser triumph over evil and save the day? Find the asnswer to these and other questions in this hilarious romp through the world of sperheroes, baddies and recycling.






TUESDAY, "McBETH'S":

Face 2 Face sets Shakespeare's famous tragedy in a fast-good restaurant, where Macbeth is a conniving kitchen boy. This tragedy adeptly converted into social satire illustrates how the Macbeth couple's amibition and unbridled greed drives them to ruin while the audience cracks up laughing. Once more Face 2 Face manages to bring the world of Shakespeare to students in a pleasant and fun way.
Browsing the internet we've found a video of one of the other plays which the company performs, have a look:

Sunday, 18 April 2010

IT'S ALREADY 40 YEARS WITHOUT THE BEATLES



It's 40 years ago already,since April 10th 1970, when Paul McCartney made official Beatles' breakup in a press note which announced that the four members of the biggest group in history would never play again. As John Lennon said a bit later, the dream had ended. Actually, the group had stopped working a few months before, when they finished recording the album "Abbey Road". The four beatles were busy working on their personal projects, but nobody dared to anounce their split up. "I didn't leave The Beatles. The Beatles left The Beatles, but nobody wants to be the one who says the party's over", said McCartney in the group's autobiography "Anthology".
Video "YESTERDAY":

"YESTERDAY" lyrics:
Yesterday, All my troubles seemed so far away,
Now it looks as though they're here to stay,
Oh, I believe in yesterday.
Suddenly, I'm not half the man I used to be,
There's a shadow hanging over me,
Oh, yesterday came suddenly.
Why she Had to go I don't know, she wouldn't say.
I said, Something wrong, now I long for yesterday.
Yesterday, Love was such an easy game to play,
Now I need a place to hide away,
Oh, I believe in yesterday.
Why she Had to go I don't know, she wouldn't say.
I said, Something wrong, now I long for yesterday.
Yesterday, Love was such an easy game to play,
Now I need a place to hide away,
Oh, I believe in yesterday.
Mm-mm-mm-mm-mm-mm-mm.

EYJAFJALLAJÖKULL: THE ICELANDIC VOLCANO WHICH HAS BROUGHT EUROPE'S SKIES TO A STANDSTILL



[From Telegraph.co.uk]

The power and wrath of Eyjafjallajökull came into dramatic clarity this weekend as the clouds parted for the first time since the glacier-topped volcano threw world air travel into turmoil.
Fresh eruptions thrust new torrents of molten rock through the shattered ice sheets in the mountain crater, spewing a towering wall of ash, dust and steam high into the air.
The power of the blasts has carried the ash – a potent threat to plane engines – even further upwards into the North Atlantic jet-stream that passes over the island near one of the world's busiest flight paths.
It is a rare combination and it was clear that for now at least Eyjafjallajökull was not easing up. Icelandic volcanologists told The Sunday Telegraph that it was impossible to predict how long the eruptions would continue or whether an even more violent neighbouring volcano might follow suit – as it has in the past.
Iceland,Europe's youngest country, sits atop the Mid-Atlantic Ridge fault line between two great shifting tectonic plates and the primal landscape of glacial valleys, snowy volcanoes and bubbling geysers is still being shaped by these explosive forces deep below the surface.
Indeed, when the first fissure opened a few weeks ago, creating scenic lava flows down the mountain, Iceland briefly gained its latest tourist attraction.
But the display of natural force that has unfolded in recent days has brought misery to millions of stranded passengers, raised concerns about the economic impact of a protracted disruption of international travel and forced hundreds of locals to evacuate their homes.
"This is not even a major eruption, so it is startling to see the impact it has had," said Matthew Jones, a British glacier expert who monitors volcanic activity at the Icelandic meteorological office.
Eyjafjallajökull is indeed not one of the biggest or most volatile of Iceland's 22 active volcanoes. But the precedents suggest that Britain and its European neighbours could face the fall-out for weeks or months to come.
Hidden from the our view by the mushroom of volcanic debris lies an even greater threat, the much larger crater of nearby Katla – named for its ferocity after a powerful witch in an ancient Icelandic saga.
Eyjafjallajökull has only erupted three times since the Vikings settled the island in the ninth century, most recently nearly two centuries ago when it blew intermittently for 14 months in the early 1820s– an alarming enough prospect for air traffic across the Atlantic.
And each occasion, it has been followed within months or a year or so by a major eruption at Katla. That volcano has also blown another 20 or so times in its own right, on average once every 60 to 80 years – so another is long overdue as it last exploded in 1918.
That eruption dwarfed what the world has seen from Eyjafjallajökull in recent days, producing about 10 times as much molten rock and throwing ash an estimated 60,000 ft into the sky.
Mr Jones said there is no evidence so far of ground rumblings beneath Katla – the usual harbinger of an eruption. "But we do know from past ash layers that are embedded together that the two volcanoes seem to be interconnected in the timings of previous explosions," he said.
Magnus Tomi Gudmundsson, a geophysicist at the University of Iceland and expert on volcanic ice eruptions, said activity had intensified at the volcano on Friday. As winds have cleared visibility, a team of scientists hope to fly over the crater this weekend to assess how much ice has melted.
"We really don't have any means to determine how long this eruption might last or whether it would erupt again," he told The Sunday Telegraph.
"There's an increased likelihood we'll see a Katla eruption in the coming months or year or two, but there's no way that's certain." The eruptions have wreaked havoc for the farmers who raise sheep, cattle and horses on the pastures around the volcano. Lava is not the danger here, but rather the floods set off as the molten rock melts the glacier that fills the crater.
Locals received automated text message and phone calls instructing them to evacuate three times – once because of the initial explosion and twice because of floods. And on the south-east side, properties remain shrouded in dust and there are fears for the welfare of animals that ingest the glass-like shards of ash.
Thorkell Eiriksson and Anna Runolfsdottir have watched the drama unfold from their farmhouse, the nearest property to Eyjafjallajökull, where they live with their two young children.
"The lava from the eruption in March just looked like a pretty little candle twinkling in the distance," said Mr Eiriksson. "But when we felt the earthquakes last week, we knew this one was very different. It's just surreal to sit here and watch the plumes of ash up there and think of the chaos this is causing around the world."
Video report:

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

"EVERYBODY HURTS" 2010 IN AID OF HAITI, THE VIDEO



"Everybody hurts-2010", the charity single in aid of Haiti has become the best selling single this century with more than 200.000 copies sold from its release date on February, 8th.
[Singing: Leona Lewis, Rod Stewart, Mika, Robbie Williams, Bon Jovi, Take That, Susan Boyle, Mariah Carey, James Blunt... among many others]
Look for the other versions of this song and other charity songs on previous posts Songs in aid of Haiti (1 & 2) on this blog under post HelpìngHaiti.


Watch the official video with behind the scenes footage from the recording:

Monday, 8 February 2010

IT'S CARNIVAL TIME


Photos from London's Notting Hill Carnival held every August.


Carnival is a festive season which occurs immediately before Lent; the main events are usually during February. Carnival typically involves a public celebration or parade combining some elements of a circus, masque and public street party. People often dress up or masquerade during the celebrations, which mark an overturning of daily life.
Carnival is a festival traditionally held in Roman Catholic and, to a lesser extent, Eastern Orthodox societies. Protestant areas usually do not have carnival celebrations or have modified traditions, such as the Danish Carnival or other Shrove Tuesday events. The Brazilian Carnaval is one of the best-known celebrations today, but many cities and regions worldwide celebrate with large, popular, and days-long events. These include the Carnevale of Venice and the Carnevale of Viareggio, Italy, the German Rhineland carnivals, centering on the Cologne carnival; the carnival of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Canary Islands; in Andalucia & Galicia (Spain) Carnival of Cádiz and in Ourense ; the carnival of Cape Verde; of Torres Vedras, Portugal; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Rijeka, Croatia; Barranquilla, Colombia; Dominican Republic; Haiti; Jamaica; the Carnaval and the Llamadas in Montevideo, Uruguay and Trinidad and Tobago Carnival. In the United States, the famous Mardi Gras celebrations in New Orleans, Louisiana, and Mobile, Alabama, date back to French and Spanish colonial times.

In Britain, the season immediately before Lent was called Shrovetide. It was a time for confessing sins (shriving) with fewer festivities than the Continental Carnivals. Shrove Tuesday is celebrated as Pancake Day, but apart from the serving of pancakes and occasional pancake races and football matches, little else of the Lent-related Shrovetide survived the English Reformation. One of the few, if not the only, Shrovetide carnivals in the UK takes places in Cowes and East Cowes on the Isle of Wight. This is the first carnival of the year on the island, and is the start of a long and busy carnival calendar.
The traditional English carnivals take place later in the year, such as the West Country Carnival in November, associated with Guy Fawkes Night. African-Caribbean communities organise and participate in Caribbean Carnivals (Caribbean style carnivals) throughout the UK. The best known of these is the annual Notting Hill Carnival, attracting up to 1.5 million people from Britain and around the world, making it the largest street festival in Europe. The carnival began in 1964 as a small procession of Trinidadians in memory of festivals in their home country. It is held in August. Leeds West Indian Carnival is Europe's oldest West Indian carnival and now attracts around 130,000 people. Other carnivals include the Leicester Caribbean Carnival and the Birmingham International Carnival. Luton Carnival, begun 1976, is in May. St Pauls carnival, an African Caribbean Carnival usually takes place on the first Saturday of July in Bristol.




Video "CARNIVAL GIRL", TEXAS with Notting Hill after the party:


Video "CARNIVAL GIRL", Texas+Kardinal Offishal live on TV:


"CARNIVAL GIRL"
TEXAS (featuring Kardinal Offishall) 2003
See me in the morning light, a photograph of pure delight.
Yeah, but I left too soon. (I don’t see you girl, ya know)
There were some good times we had, and there were some that weren’t so bad.
Oh, just feel it now, lets feel it now.
RAP (1): Yoh, yo, I remember what we used to do
blink up and dream a living with a notion view
I’ll give you the sun, the stars and the blue sky too.
So come on a leasing want to pleasing you.
Remember when we used to link up with the crew
Suzanne, Suzette and Tanya too.
You’re the one on me side from the out yard view
it’s just a party now, yo, I believe in you, I ain’t leaving you.
CHORUS: OOH, COME ON LET’S GET DOWN TONIGHT,
COME ON LET’S GET DOWN TONIGHT,
JOIN THE CARNIVAL OF LOVE,
OOH, WELL YOU SING IT NOW, TAKE IT NOW,
JOIN THE CARNIVAL OF LOVE. (Come on join in the carnival of love, yeah)
I watch the laughter in your eyes, I see the wrinkles change in size
yeah, time has left you now.
Lovers may have tried to be, everything that’s strange in me
oh, much deeper now, (Much deeper) much deeper now.
RAP (2):, Yo, I used to love it when we used to play,
it used to be like a weekend everyday,
three times a night, right in everyway,
body to body make you scream and say, physically dance.
You’re not easy, take it easy,
only girl, we are love, but man, we got hope,
and you stay on my mind,
so lets go to the carnival, girl. Let me bring you to life.
CHORUS (X 2)
Push it now, push it now. (I believe in you). Stop me now. (X 4)
(I believe in you, I ain’t leaving you)
CHORUS (X 2)
REPEAT RAP 1

Saturday, 6 February 2010

SONGS IN AID OF HAITI (2): THE ORIGINAL VERSIONS.


Photo: Haiti's Presidential Palace after the earthquake (above), before (below), a symbol of the country's complete and total destruction.
Here are the original versions of the songs which now have been re-recorded to raise funds for the Haiti's earthquake victims. The "EVERYBODY HURTS" 2010 Haiti-version has become the best-selling single this century with more than 200.000 copies sold since it was released on February, 8th.

Video of original song "I'LL STAND BY YOU" by The Pretenders live:

Audio of the same song+lyrics:

Video of original song "EVERYBODY HURTS" by REM (subtitled English & Spanish):
Video The Corrs unplugged live version of the same song:

Friday, 5 February 2010

1 MONTH LATER: SONGS IN AID OF HAITI (1)




The 2010 Haiti earthquake was a catastrophic magnitude 7.0 Mw earthquake. Its epicentre was near the town of Léogâne, approximately 25 km (16 miles) west of Port-au-Prince, Haiti's capital. The earthquake occurred at 16:53 local time on Tuesday, 12 January 2010. By 24 January, at least 52 aftershocks measuring 4.5 or greater had been recorded. An estimated three million people were affected by the quake; Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive stated on 3 February 2010 that 200,000 people had been identified as dead and and estimated that 300,000 injured had been treated. Bellerive also estimated that 250,000 residences and 30,000 commercial buildings had collapsed or were severely damaged.
The earthquake caused major damage to Port-au-Prince, Jacmel and other settlements in the region. Many notable landmark buildings were significantly damaged or destroyed, including the Presidential Palace, the National Assembly building, the Port-au-Prince Cathedral, and the main jail.
Many countries responded to appeals for humanitarian aid, pledging funds and dispatching rescue and medical teams, engineers and support personnel.
Artists have also contributed with telethons and rerecording classic songs to help raise funds, here we collect some of these efforts:
- Shakira does a cover of The Pretender's classic "I'LL STAND BY YOU":

- Several artists cover REM's classic hit "EVERYBODY HURTS";

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