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, 31 de mayo de 2016

Paul McCartney in concert in Madrid

It all began in Liverpool. You remember we were there last year on our IV Study Trip, especially when we visited Liverpool. Have a look at this article in EL PAÍS (watch the video included).


Next Thursday Paul McCartney will be playing in Madrid.

Thanks to our Philosophy teacher, who provided us with all this!!!

lunes, 30 de mayo de 2016

Batman strikes again!!!

Believe or not  >>>   Australian bat invasion  (News report, BBC Learning English)

Article related:    Bats invading Australian town

Video to watch: Swarm of bats invade Australian town (The Telegraph)

Have you ever seen a film connected with the figure of Batman? Do you like this kind of films? Well, here's a funny video about the latest film.

An exercise to practise REPORTED SPEECH.

sábado, 28 de mayo de 2016

No longer unique, but just amazing two years later.

Sometimes dreams come true (Simeone, Zidane, Gabi, Ramos, thousands of supporters had a dream one day, but only a few of them could see their dream come true. So it is life! I do hope that your dreams will come true, as mine turned into reality: having the best NON-BILINGUAL students ever). You remember two years ago  >>>  


A unique final and a great success for Spain & Madrid!!!

Listening exercise: Could you be an astronaut? (6 Minute English, BBC)


viernes, 20 de mayo de 2016

Miguel de la Quadra-Salcedo in his last adventure!!!

Our Spanish Marco Polo has died. What a sad day! He was an athlete, an adventurer, a journalist..., that is to say, a real Renaissance man!!!!

Read about him: MIGUEL DE LA QUADRA SALCEDO & his adventures (Article in Spanish)


What do you know about him? Do you know any other similar personalities?

Difference between LAST and LATEST   


Listening exercise to do: Conspiracy theories (6 Minute English)


miércoles, 18 de mayo de 2016

Biofuel, a menace for fauna and flora??

Sometimes you never know what is good or bad for our planet. Have a look at these articles:

Related articles:

By the way, do you remember the film BEE MOVIE?

lunes, 16 de mayo de 2016


I often present you some news that appear on the press. Well, have a close look at them and you will discover what the REPORTED SPEECH and the DIRECT SPEECH is all about. However, as a starter I will give you some hints:


When you are reporting someone's words you've got two ways to do it:
  • using the exact words used by the speaker  >>>    DIRECT SPEECH  (Example:  'I'm tired', he said)

  • reporting the speaker's words    >>>   REPORTED SPEECH or INDIRECT SPEECH (Example: He said he was tired)

However, before we begin explaining how it works, we must say that the reported speech we will be talking about is a very artificial one as we suppose the situation in which the words were said and the situation in which the words were reported are completely different, but this is not always true. Actually, they may be exactly the same, as in the following example:

- "I have brought you here these exercises" (SITUATION: the teacher is speaking and the students are listening)
- One students raises his hand and says: "Pardon. What did you say?"
- "I have just said that I have brought you here these exercises." (There are no changes at all because the situation is exactly the same: the teacher is speaking and the students are listening at the same time and in the same place.)
Apart from this, remember that there are indirect ways of speaking like in the following sentences:
- I don't know what time it is (instead of 'What time is it?')
- I wonder where I can buy some bread (instead of 'Where can I buy some bread?')
- I don't know if Dad is at home. (instead of 'Is Dad at home?')
- Tell me how fast you can run. (instead of 'How fast can you run?')

Anyway, we will make all the possible changes in our examples and all these transformations are what we call the BACKSHIFT, which is a change that we make backwards. This BACKSHIFT affects three main areas:

  1. TENSES.- The changes are similar to the ones made in our language and the try to express the time gap there is between the moment of speaking and the time when the words were reported. Just remember to keep the time gap. For example, the past simple can stay the same or change into the past perfect. (Jane: "I arrived at 7"  >>  She said that she arrived / had arrived at 7"), but in the following example it is better to have it in the past perfect to keep the mentioned time gap: 'This is the present my boyfriend gave me yesterday', said Jane  >>   Jane said that was the present her boyfriend had given her the day before.)
  2. PERSONS.- The speaker is represented by the first person and the listener by the second person, while there are no changes in the third person. So there may be changes in the personal pronouns, possessive adjectives and pronouns...
  3. OTHER WORDS CONNECTED WITH TIME AND PLACE, which have to be learned by heart, although most of them are similar to our language.
Let's begin with this third area:

Three days ago
Three days before
Next Friday
The next Friday
That night
Last week
The previous week, the week before
The day before, the previous day
The next day, the day after
That day

Reported statements

Peter: "Money is the only thing I live for."   >>>  Peter said money was the only thing he lived for.

Reported questions

We've got two types of questions: WH-questions and Yes/No questions. Remember to undo the inversion because the reported question is actually a statement.

Pam: "Do you like my dress?"    Jim: "Yes, I do"   >>>  Pam asked if/whether he liked her dress and he answered he did.
Albert: "When are you going to read this book?"    >>>    Albert asked the students when they were going to read that book.

Reported orders and requests

A TO-INFINITIVE structure is required.

Mother: "Would you buy some bread for dinner, please?"   >>>  My mother asked me to buy some bread for dinner.

Students: "Don't give us any homework for tomorrow.">They asked Albert not to give them any homework for the next day.


And here are some Words in the News (BBC Learning English):

sábado, 14 de mayo de 2016

HIROSHIMA: shame, but no apology!

Some articles about the dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima and the visit of US President to the city:

Resultado de imagen de the guardian  HIROSHIMA

Highway to Hell!!!

BBC World Service  >>  Canada wildfire advance 'slows' as evacuations finish


Don't fear the phrasals: three important tips (BBC Learning English) >>  Interesting sessions to learn about the issue.

Episode 160511 / 11 May 2016   >>>  Expressions presented: highly symbolic, obliterated, inflicted & exoplanets.

And finally, 6 Minute English presents this listening exercise for you to do: Have you got too much stuff?    

jueves, 12 de mayo de 2016

Don't be a pain in the neck!!! This is just the first hurdle.

Resultado de imagen de hurdleThe school year is coming to an end and it is obviously full of hurdles (What does this word mean? In the school context it would be our final exams). Have a look at these two interesting phrases to learn:

Resultado de imagen de a pain in the neck


Resultado de imagen de going forwardGoing forward (another expression to learn), it would be interesting for you to keep all these phrases in a document so that you could learn them easily.





Have you noticed the use of 'ENOUGH'? Remember:

  • ENOUGH + nouns (both countable and uncountable nouns) >>>  I've got enough time to study for my exams. There are enough chairs for everybody.

  • Adjectives/Adverbs + ENOUGH   >>>>  The exercise was easy enough for me to do it. Fernando Alonso didn't drive fast enough to win the race.



And also remember the uses of TOO (which are identycal to the uses of SO):

  • Resultado de imagen de going forward

    TOO + adj/adv   >>>>   The book is too long for me to read it in one week. He walks too slowly.

  • TOO + much/many + nouns  >>>  Messi has got too much money. There are too many chairs.

Resultado de imagen de hurdle