Wednesday, 23 January 2013


As you already know, Dr.King Day was celebrated last Monday. Emir has prepared this lesson about him. Below you have one of his most famous speeches.  Let's watch it and reckon why he was one of the men that made a difference in history:


“I Have a Dream” Discussion Questions

1. What is Dr. King’s “dream”? 

2. How will southern states like Mississippi be transformed, according to this speech?

3. How does Dr. King think people should be “judged” or assessed? 

4. Why do you think he mentions “jail” several times in this speech? 

5. In the “let freedom ring” section, he mentions many different places in the U.S. What is the significance of this? 

6. Dr. King was a Baptist minister, a preacher. How is his faith reflected in the speech? 

7. How is this speech relevant today? Would you add anything to it? 

You can read the script for the speech here or watch the video with subtitles here:

Tuesday, 22 January 2013


President Obama has just celebrated his second inauguration ceremony on Monday and this is a major events for American people and also for the rest of the world. It's always held on Janurary 20th unless the date falls on Sunday, in which case it's postponed to Monday.

You know it's his second and last term of office as USA Constitution clearly states. Many people have expressed hope and voiced their expectations for his second term, including moving health care forward and tackling issues like gun control, gay rights, the status of the Guantanamo Bay detention camp.

There are a lot of cool resources on his second oath but I would like you to have a look at the following.

  • The oaths from Washington to Obama Choose a couple of presidents and read about the details to their oaths. You also have the script to their speeches, which you will need for the last activity.

  • Watch President Obama's inaugurational speech and read the script at the same time. Now read 6 lines out of his speech. Make sure you listen to your partner's reading and continue where he/she left it. Let's see if we can all together read his whole speech. Careful with intonation!

    Check your marks and mistakes here. Highlights pronunciation mistakes whereas highlights intonation and stress mistakes
    Deadline: Sunday 27th


Saturday, 12 January 2013


Dear Students,

I don't know if you are a cinema goer and if you love the cinema as much as I do. The nominees for the Oscars 2013 are here!!! The Oscar ceremony will be held next February. There are 9 films nominated, but we cannot choose "Amour" because it isn't in English but French, so there are 8 possible candidates.

Your homework this week is very simple and really interesting. You have to go to the page below, click on the eight films nominated for best picture, read a liitle about the directos, the actors, the plot, etc, and watch the trailer for each one of them (about two minutes). Then you have to send me a voice mail about what you think of each one of the pictures, what kind of picture it is and your expectations about it. Finally you have to tell me which one you would like to watch and why. Don't forget to enter your email account to check my feedback later on.

Clipped from
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DEADLINE: 19 January
Cast your vote below

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And the winner is...

Les Miserables!


This is the fourth consecutive year that I'll be using English Central with students to help you improve your speaking and listening skills in English.

English Central offers a unique speech recognition platform which allows you to practice PRONUNCIATION with any video you choose and then get INSTANT FEEDBACK on how well you are doing. It also has other possibilities of study such as phonetics and vocabulary.

First of all, enroll in my class by clicking here. You need to register with your full name, valid email address and password. Now you are part of my group of students.  

You'll be assigned different challenges each week and your performance will be part of your marks this term. Remember you must watch the videos within your class. 


WEEK 1: from Monday 14th January to Sunday 20th January.  


WEEK 2: from Monday 21st January to Sunday 27th January.


WEEK 3: from Monday 28th January to Sunday 3rd February.


WEEK 4: from Monday 4th February to Sunday 10th February.


WEEK 5: from Tuesday 12th February to Monday 18th February.


Tuesday, 8 January 2013


After having watched the film, I would like you to comment on some discussion questions I've come up with in the following VoiceThread.

  • Is Eva responsible for creating a child she sees as a monster, or was he a monster all along? Was Kevin evil from the very beginning?
  • Why is Eva suffering public reproof?
  • Does Eva come to realize why Kevin would harm other children or does she give up trying to understand?
  • Do you think Kevin's parents could have prevented his act of violence?
  • Do you think Kevin was born evil or was he brought up to be evil?
  • Why did he make use of a bow and an arrow to commit his heinous crime?
  • Why do you think that he didn't choose his mother as one of his victims?
  • Has Eva forgiven Kevin at the end of the film?
  • Should Kevin be tried as an adult and sentenced to life imprisonment? What about to death penalty?
  • Eva sees herself as a bad mother, was she one? 

Deadline: Sunday 13th January


“The language of books is learned - not taught”

You are going to read Fairy Tales aloud to the class but before you do, you need to work on your fairy tale, get to understand it and make it yours.

Reading aloud and Storytelling is an art form and we have to hook the listener with the delivery of our first line.

 How do we tell/read a story:

  • You must express emotions and reactions - expressive storytelling/reading will be remembered.
  • You need to use silence, pauses and emphasize words for dramatic effect.
  • Maintain eye contact 
  • Visualize it - think of it as a comic strip
  • Create your own version. Retell it numerous times to yourself
  • Be focused and maintain concentration
  • Ask questions to your audience to engage them in the reading.
You'll read the stories in pairs or groups of threes depending on their length.

In this pdf you can find 8 popular fairy tales to choose from:
  • Cinderella
  • The Emperor's new clothes 
  • Goldilocks & the three bears
  • Hansel & Gretel
  • Jack and the beanstalk
  • The miller, his son and their donkey
  • Snow White
  • The town mouse and the country mouse
You can also choose among the following:

  • The Ugly Duckling
  • The Elves and the Shoemaker
  • The Fisherman and His Wife
  • Tom Thumb
  • The Little Red Hen
  • The Three Billy Goats Gruff
  • The Pied Piper of Hamelin
  • Rapunzel
  • Bambi
  • Little Red Riding Hood
  • The Sleeping Beauty
  • Beauty and the Beast
  • Puss in Boots                  
Write a comment to this post with the fairy tale of your choice and your names.    

You can enter your text into this site to check  pronounciation. For single words this other site is faster.