Empty your mind, be formless. Shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.

by Bruce Lee

martes, 3 de diciembre de 2019

Xmas is round the corner!!!

Christmas is just round the corner!!! Probably the best time of the year, from the point of view of family gatherings!!! 


Christmas is one of the most frequent topics in this blog (you can click on the label Christmas ) and you may be able to answer some of these questions:

  • What kind of present would you like to have for Christmas?

  • Have you ever been to London or Cambridge, or Britain in general, for Christmas? Have a look at the video our Philosophy and Robotics teacher José Luis did when we went on one of our study trips and tell me if you would ever like to go.

  • What is your favourite Christmas carol in English?

  • What things do you usually do? What things do you have to do every Christmas that you like and that you don't like?

  • What words do you know about the topic: Christmas? 

And my students in 4º ESO must remember to make a comment in this post:

Dickens & Christmas

(Book online  for you to read)

Here's a listening exercise for you to do: How long can you hold your breath?  (6 Minute English, BBC Learning English)

English in a Minute:  SEE, WATCH & LOOK   (BBC Learning English)

Rod Stewart - Christmas Live at Stirling Castle


6 Minute Vocabulary: More suffixes  (BBC Learning English)

The English We Speak: 'Dad dancing' - Get ready to be embarrassed! (BBC Learning English) Do you like the way your dad dances? Does he make any funny movements? What about your mum?

viernes, 29 de noviembre de 2019

It is not just climate change, IT IS CLIMATIC EMERGENCY!!!

Next week Madrid will be holding the next climate summit (United Nations Climate Change - December 2019), which should have been hosted by Chile. 


Madrid to host UN climate summit after Chile pulls out (The Guardian)



It is not just climate change what our world has to face, but also a climatic emergency as things are getting worse and worse at such an incredible speed that it might be too late if we don't take action as soon as we can.


Some articles for you to read about CLIMATE EMERGENCY:


Remember the problems derived from the melting of the permafrost:



And there are people who have already found some solutions to the problem. For example, here's an example of a Scottish firm who uses sea water or the case of some scientists who have provoked a snowstorm:



Growing Crops in the Desert with Seawater | Freethink


6 Minute Vocabulary: Job suffixes  (BBC Learning English)

English with Lucy    >>>  9 RULES OF ARTICLES - A, AN, THE or 'THEE' ? - Use and pronounce correctly every time!



Stories for Children >>> Nell's books (BBC Learning English)



  • Episode 191127 / 27 November 2019    >>>  Mapping the dead (How tech is finding lost graves):   Language related to 'burial'.  Need-to-know language: resting place, headstones, grave, cemetery and decay.

lunes, 25 de noviembre de 2019

Better as a team!!!

"Better as a team", said Nadal.  He was really proud of having participated and won the Davis Cup last weekend, and emphasized the fact he felt even better because the victory came from a team. Tennis is an individual sport and he is used to fighting, winning and losing on his own, so he has come to the conclusion that nothing beats a victory when it is achieved as a team.



Talking about tackling problems, today was...

International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women

 and again the solution doesn't come from an individual action, but from the actions carried out by a whole society.

Click on this label for related posts on the issue: violence against women

It's better as a team  >>>

Here some quotes from "15 Quotes to Inspire Great Teamwork" (Inc.) related to the greatness of teamwork:

  • "Individual commitment to a group effort--that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work." --Vince Lombardi

  • "Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships." --Michael Jordan

  • "Teamwork is the ability to work together toward a common vision. The ability to direct individual accomplishments toward organizational objectives. It is the fuel that allows common people to attain uncommon results." --Andrew Carnegie

  • "Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much." --Helen Keller

  • "None of us is as smart as all of us." --Ken Blanchard

  • "Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success." --Henry Ford

  • "If everyone is moving forward together, then success takes care of itself." --Henry Ford

  • "The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team." --Phil Jackson

  • "It takes two flints to make a fire." --Louisa May Alcott

  • "Unity is strength. . . when there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved." --Mattie Stepanek

And as a team, Spain has won their 6th Davis Cup....

Davis Cup: Rafael Nadal secures Spain the title (

Rafael Nadal (ESP) vs Denis Shapovalov (CAN) 2019 Davis Cup Final



Auger Aliassime CAN vs Bautista Agut ESP 2019 Davis Cup Final

Nadal/Granollers (ESP) vs Gonzalez/Mayer (ARG) DAVIS CUP 2019

RAFA NADAL: 2019 ATP Highlight Reel

Listening exercise to do: Can robots care for us? (Can technology look after us) (6 Minute English, BBC Learning English) Related post you can also have a look at and which is connected with 'wearable technology':  Wearables to help and save patients


Quiz for you to do: WHY? Expressing purpose



  • Episode 191113 / 13 November 2019    >>>  Do we need toys to play? (Toy-free play trial):   Language related to 'play'.  Need-to-know language: nursery, imagination, dexterity, deprive & gender.

jueves, 21 de noviembre de 2019



It's no rubbish!! There's rubbish everywhere: at school, in the streets, in the sea, in the space... Something must be done immediately if we don't want things to go any worse!!


How many words do you know that are connected with 'rubbish'? Look far below in this post and you'll find some of them. But try first, and then have a look at this interesting LINGOHACK episode:



  • Episode 191120 / 20 November 2019    >>>  Learn 'rubbish' vocabulary (French restaurants fighting climate change):   Language related to 'rubbish'.  Need-to-know language: waste food, compost, organic, landfill and greenhouse gas.

And rubbish is obviously connected to some big issues, such as: nuclear waste, climate change, recycling, reusing, upcycling, pollution, landfill, methane gas...



Some articles for you to read about the topic: 


The Future’s Rubbish! - BBC Documentary



Amazing fact:  Almost 16,000 tonnes of Aucklanders' recycling ended up in landfill last year 

However, 'rubbish' can also mean 'talking foolishly'. Look it up here, and here you can have its definition in English.

And talking about 'rubbish' and, sorry, 'shit', here's another episode of News Review: Slippery toilets could save water (BBC Learning English)

boy reading a bookEpisode 2: Adverbs of frequency in our series of BBC Learning English: The Grammar Gameshow, where you can test your knowledge of grammar.

English in a Minute:  Five ways of using 'run'   (BBC Learning English)

Words connected with rubbish: rubbish bin, dustbin, litter, space junk, debris, garbage, trash, compost, waste...  You can even have a look at some posts related with this:

Stories for Children >>> Little Monsters (BBC Learning English)

Tennis  >>>  Top 5 shots in Roland Garros  


domingo, 17 de noviembre de 2019

More demanding jobs and stressful lives


Jobs now are more and more demanding. You never stop doing things and you are never sure you have done every single detail required. 

For instance, teachers in the old days would come to class, probably five or ten minutes late, and all their students would be sitting in silence waiting for the class to start. Everybody would stand up, say good morning and sit down again in silence with all the school material displayed on the desk ready to start. That would be a super-easy start for a teacher and this is just the beginning.


Nowadays, teachers have to carry a big schoolbag, an audio player and, probably, even a bag full of students' folders. They struggle to reach the classroom because corridors are full of people running, playing, shouting, jumping... and when they manage to arrive just a few minutes late the classroom is all in chaos: more students shouting, jumping, running, throwing ball papers to each other.... Once the teacher has left his heavy schoolbag, audio player and bag on the desk shouting back at the students to be quiet, put the desks in order, collect all the litter from the floor, keep apart from the walls in order to preserve the recently-painted walls, brings out all the school material (tablet, textbook, CDs, teacher's notebook, pencil case...), etc he is ready to start the class. But are his students?



How Many Teachers Are Highly Stressed? Maybe More Than People Think. (neaToday)



What are students' task like? Are they tougher now? Is it easier to study now? Write a comment telling us your opinion.



Some articles for you to read:

Listening exercise to do: Does work make you stressed? (6 Minute English, BBC Learning English)

Learners' questions: What are the differences between 'fast', 'quick' and 'quickly'? (BBC Learning English)

Further information about teenage gambling.

The fall and rise of a gambling addict | Justyn Rees Larcombe | TEDxRoyalTunbridgeWells




  • Episode 191030 / 30 October 2019    >>>  VR: The secret of Mona Lisa's smile:    Language related to 'art'.  Need-to-know language: exhibition, work, composition, studies & art works.

And here are some things to chill out:

Stories for Children >>> Best job in the world (BBC Learning English)

Tennis  >>>  You Think Tennis Is Boring ? This Video Will Surely Change Your Mind  


And do you know who is world number in the year 2019???  When 17 Year-Old Nadal Made the Tennis World Fall in Love with him  

Nadal is the oldest tennis player to be number one!!!


sábado, 9 de noviembre de 2019

Thirty years ago and a dazzling mistake!!!

Last summer I visited Berlin, as you may well remember this post: BERLIN. a sad story with a happy ending (we do hope) , and it a was a city that really impressed me because of their historical meaning. I learned yesterday on the news that today is 30th anniversary of the Berlin Wall fall. What a great day for Germany and for Europe, in general!!!

Scorpions - Wind Of Change (Official Music Video)

This is the song that is often associated to the fall of the Berlin Wall  (version with lyrics)

Reagan’s ‘Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall’ was almost left unsaid (extended speech)

And what happened to USSR President? Gorbachev: Treachery killed USSR - BBC News

30th Anniversary of the Peaceful Revolution - Fall of the Berlin Wall   

(Kultur Projekte Berlin) 


Here are some articles and videos dealing the topic:

Listening exercise to do: Why do people like sad music? (6 Minute English, BBC Learning English)

News Review:Can running help you live longer? (BBC Learning English)

Football:  Football’s Greatest Players - Andrés Iniesta   

Spanish brilliance outshines Netherlands in Final


  • Episode 191106 / 11 November 2019    >>>  Oysters: An eco-friendly delicacy?:   Language related to 'lakes and oceans'.  Need-to-know language: loch, mudflats, reefs, incoming tide & estuary.

jueves, 7 de noviembre de 2019

It is said that we are far too many!!!!

Are we supposed to consider this issue as one of the BIG problems to solve in the future? Is climate change also going to be affected? Will there be enough drinking water for all of us? The population is growing bigger and bigger. And the bigger it gets, the fewer natural resources we've got left to live.


In contrast, families have fewer children these days in Spain!!!

I hope you have paid attention to all the PASSIVE VOICE examples we have seen. Here are some exercises for you to do:

    1     2    3    4      


6 Minute Grammar: PASSIVE VOICE (BBC Learning English)

Here are some articles for you to read and some videos to watch about this topic:

Nature is speaking. So listen!!!


Travelling tip   >>>    Grande marée au Mont-Saint-Michel and another one in English...

Inside the walls of Mont St Michel and interior of his abbey 

Stories for Children   >>>   Abdu and the traffic jam  (New series in BBC Learning English) 

Football:  Football’s Greatest Players - Xavi   

lunes, 4 de noviembre de 2019

Who taught you the most things? Why the mother tongue?

Who taught you the most things? Your Mum or your Dad? Or both at the same time? Are the teaching roles inside the family changing nowadays? 


Well, things used to be so different. As babies or little children, we used to spend a lot of time at home with mothers and obviously we would learn from them, but nowadays mothers may be working and we may spend more time with our fathers, with our grandparents, or even at nursery schools.


In northern Europe many mothers, or fathers, may decide to stay at home and raise their children themselves and that would mean that we would go back to square one.

Anyway, children learn their languages from the people that are around them, so sometimes it's the mothers, or the fathers, or grandparents, or the nannies that take care of them! Just before they begin to speak they go through what is called THE SILENT PERIOD, when they just listen and listen without producing anything at all. 



Write about how you learned to speak and to do many other things, and about the people who taught you most.


Why mother tongue matters


Here are some articles for you to read about all this learning process and even a listening exercise for you to do:

The “Silent Period” in Language Acquisition: Truth or Myth?

What is SILENT PERIOD? What does SILENT PERIOD mean? SILENT PERIOD meaning, definition & explanation




English in a Minute: 5 uses of BREAK   (BBC Learning English)




Learn English with Papa  >>>  How Do You Talk To The Doctor In English?       


Nature is speaking. So listen!!!

What's hidden under the Greenland ice sheet? - TED Talks    by Kristin Poinar

Danny Macaskill: Danny Daycare



Football:  Football’s Greatest International Teams .. Germany 1972-1974