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

lunes, 30 de enero de 2017

Chinese on the move!!!!

Why are there so many Chinese people travelling? Because they are heading home for the Chinese New Year. It is the Year of the Rooster.

Here are some articles to read about the issue:

How would you transform this passive sentence into the active voice?
Hundreds of millions of people are expected to be on the move this week.

Listening exercise to do: Family history (6 Minute English, BBC Learning English)


Rachel's English (American English) episode is dealing this time with the phrasal verbs we can form with the verb HOLD.



A. VERBS AND PREPOSITIONS. Complete these sentences with the correct preposition.

1. Mrs Smith was accused ...... treating her dogs badly.
2. Many of her neighbours had complained ....... her ...... this.
3. The forty-four dogs all belonged ....... her.
4. The dogs suffered ....... malnutrition.
5. Her neighbours blamed her ...... the poor condition of the dogs.
6. They wanted to prevent her  ....... getting any more.
7. In court, she was charged ...... causing the dogs unnecessary suffering.
8. Sometimes people are fined large sums of money ....... this.
9. The court has not yet decided ...... her case.
10. The judge, however,  has said that he does not believe .......... punishment in cases like this.

B. VOCABULARY. Complete the following sentences with the correct form of the word in CAPITALS.

1. She had ignored her neighbours' ..............         COMPLAIN
2. They had been disturbed by the dog's ............         BARK
3. It could be heard all over the  ..............         NEIGHBOUR
4. Her lawyer said in her ....... that she was lonely and confused.      DEFEND
5. He said this was not a case of deliberate ......    CRUEL
6. In other words, she had no  ....... of causing any suffering.      INTEND
7. He said he hoped the court would show some .......... of her condition.      UNDERSTAND
8. However, the court found her  .......      GUILT
9. The judge gave her ........  to keep only one dog for ten years.     PERMIT
10. Do you agree with this .......... ?   DECIDE

Solutions in the next post

SOLUTIONS to the Vocabulary exercise in the previous post: 
1. unexpectedly    2. informative    3.action   4. lengthens     5. suitable

Extremely important piece of news for our students in

Bachillerato (New Selectivity Exam)  >>

miércoles, 25 de enero de 2017

Roger & Rafa, the old rockers are back!!

And both of them reached the final after beating Wawrinka and Dimitrov. The final was a great 5-set match where Federer managed to overcome a 1-3 in the final set and defeat Nadal. Thanks to both of them for such incredible tennis moments!!!


Federer and Nadal are already in the semi-finals in the Australian Open, so we may have another final between them.

Articles to read:

Roger Federer into Australian Open semis after win over Mischa Zverev (The Guardian)

Rafael Nadal revival rolls on with win over Milos Raonic at Australian Open (The Guardian)

VOCABULARY  >>>>  The word in capitals at the end of each of the following sentences can be used to form a word that fits suitably in the blank space. Fill each blank in this way.

Example: My teacher ................ me to take this examination.  COURAGE   (solution: encouraged)

1. We always have a bed ready in the spare room in case visitors arrive .............  EXPECT
2. The book does not say much about the prices, but is very ............ about everything else.  INFORM
3. The government is expected to take ........... against the level of unemployment.   ACT
4. They have added three new songs to the show, which ........... it by about fifteen minutes.    LONG
5. I am looking for a ........... gift for an old lady.    SUIT

Solutions in the next post   

SOLUTIONS to the WISHES AND REGRETS exercise in the previous post: 

1. I wish it had snowed in Salobreña yesterday.    2. If only I had a lot of money.
3. I wish I knew the answer to that question.      4. If only I didn't have to work in this terrible place.
5. I wish I could help you.    6. If only I were rich.  7. Don't you wish you could drive?
118. I wish I could speak English perfectly.  


Episode 170125 / 25 January 2017   >>>  Expressions presented: premature, wholesome & obesity.

jueves, 19 de enero de 2017

Hi, Duck!! What is your most prized possession?

Here's a funny way to greet: Duck! that is analysed in the section The English We Speak (BBC Learning English)

What other greetings you know?  Here are some  >>>   CU l8r, alligator! , In a while, crocodile! ,  what's up? , Cheers! , Cheerio!...

To duck or not to duck     >>>>   Here's Daffy Duck in an amazing cartoon.

Is it duck season or rabbit season?  Click here.

Learn about Lucy's prized possession


It is snowing all over Europe, even in Spain, in parts you would never imagine. At school yesterday we could see some snowflakes falling and we can see all the mountains around us full of snow. What a gorgeous landscape! Here's an article to read about these incredible weather conditions and its consequences:

Italy avalanche rescuers: we’ve called out but heard no replies, no voices (The Guardian)

Listening exercise to do: Life on the edge (6 Minute English, BBC Learning English)

WISHES AND REGRETS  >>>>  Finish each sentence so that it means more or less the same thing as the one before it:

1. It didn't snow in Salobreña yesterday.    >>>>    I wish.....
2. I'm sorry I haven't got a lot of money.    >>>>>   If only.......
3. What a pity I don't have the answer to that question.    >>>>>   I wish.......
4. I'm sorry I have to work in this terrible place.    >>>>>   If only.......
5. I'm sorry that I can't help you.    >>>>>   I wish.......
6. I'd like to be rich, but I'm not.    >>>>>   If only .......
7. Don't you think it's a pity you can't drive?    >>>>>   Don't you wish.......?
8. I'm sorry I can't speak English perfectly.    >>>>>   I wish .......

Solutions in the next post   

SOLUTIONS to the Use of English exercise in the previous post: 
1. It isn't warm/hot enough to go swimming today.    2. He hasn't visited us for a long time.
3. I prefer staying/to stay stay at home than going/to go to a bad film.// staying at home to going to a bad film.
4. 'What a beautiful day!' exclaimed George.     5. In spite of feeling ill / of the fact that he felt ill,....
6. It was such an awful meal that they refused ......  7. Haven't you finished your homework yet?
8. Jane invited Anne to stay for/to dinner.    9. Your bicycle will be stolen unless you lock it.
10. This is the first time (that) I have been to a safari park.  11. Simon denied taking /that he had taken the money.

English at university: Emergency (episode 18)


Episode 170118 / 18 January 2017   >>>  Expressions presented: predominantly, devastating, cited & controversial.

domingo, 15 de enero de 2017

What are you the best at?


Have you ever wondered if you are, or have ever been, the best at something?  (Listening exercise: What's your superpower? from 6 Minute English, BBC Learning English)

Rachel's English (American English)   >>>>  Episode on the phrasal verb PLAY.

What is the 'nanotechnology'?


Rewrite these sentences using a different structure by saying the same (the beginnings are given):

1. It is too cold to go swimming today.    >>>>>   It isn't .......
2. It is a long time since he last visited us.    >>>>>   He hasn't .......
3. I'd rather stay at home than go to a bad film.    >>>>>   I prefer .......
4. 'Isn't it a beautiful day?' exclaimed George.    >>>>>   'What .......'
5. Although he felt ill, Jeremy still went to work.    >>>>>   In spite .......
6. The meal was so awful that they refused to pay the bill.    >>>>>   It .......
7. Are you still doing your homework?    >>>>>   Haven't you .......
8. 'Anne, what about staying for dinner?' Jane said.    >>>>>   Jane invited .......
9. Somebody will steal your bicycle unless you lock it.    >>>>>   Your bicycle .......
10. I've never been to a safari park before.    >>>>>   This is the first time .......
11. 'I did not take the money,' said Simon.    >>>>>   Simon denied .......

Solutions to the exercise in the next post

miércoles, 11 de enero de 2017

Brothers in arms... How foolish!


Breakup of Yugoslavia  (interesting videos to watch: 1 & 2) >>>>  how war ended a friendship, a brotherhood, a team..... Listen to this song by the Dire Straits as a kind of warm up. Pay attention to the lyrics

Once upon a time, there was a country named Yugoslavia, but especially there was an incredible basketball team... Then war came and it was the end of this country, of this great basketball... and of a great friendship. Watch this touching video: 'Once Brothers'  >>>

The tragic death of Drazen Petrovic (Sports Illustrated)

The more you travel, the more open you'll become and you'll discover how foolish wars are.

Why visit Croatia

10 best places to visit in Serbia

Learn some TRAVEL phrasal verbs with Lucy


TRAVEL is the general idea of going from one place to another.
JOURNEY is usually a travel by land.
VOYAGE is usally a long travel, mostly by ship.
TRIP is going somehere for business/shopping/studying or for a short period (a school trip)
TOUR is usually the travel organized for tourists with a circular itenarary.

Crossword on AIR TRAVEL  

Solutions to the exercises in the previous post:

WORD FORMATION: 1. secretarial  ,   2. musical  ,   3. additional  ,   4. professional   ,   5. personality   ,   6. centrally   ,   7. friendly   ,   8. yearly     9. monthly    ,   10. daily

English at university: Take note (episode 17)

The English we speak: Don't lose your bottle! (BBC Learning English)



domingo, 8 de enero de 2017

Petrol crisis in Mexico and learning how to pronounce English

Here are two articles about a problem they have in Mexico because of the rise in the price of petrol. Find examples of passive voice and differences between British English and American English:

Let's watch this video (English with Papa) about how to pronounce 'would' correctly:

Furthermore, here we have got Lucy talking about an amazing resource that can help us learn to pronounce any word in English!!  >>>  English with Lucy    


Oxford Learner's Dictionaries | Find definitions, translations, and grammar explanations at Oxford Learner's Dictionaries

WORD FORMATION. Complete these sentences with a suitable word formed from the word in CAPITALS.
1.      Have you got any ______________ experience?  SECRETARY
2.      I'm not very ______________  .   MUSIC
3.      There are many ______________ benefits besides this.    ADDITION
4.      What are your ______________ qualifications?     PROFESSION
5.      Do you know the boss  ______________ ?    PERSON
6.      The office is _________ located.   CENTRE
7.      It is a very ______________ company.   FRIEND
8.      You will have a share of the ______________ profits.     YEAR
9.      What is your ______________ salary?      MONTH
10. Do you get a ______________ newspaper?      DAY

SOLUTIONS to the Use of English exercise in the previous post:      
1. in/ near     2. had      3. one     4. At/four     5. what    6. whether      7. else    8. by   9. to  10. very/ totally/completely/really/quite...  11. least   12. on     13. were   14. as    15. at/round/over   16. very/ quite/obviously/clearly      17. by      18. clear/definite   19. led     20. else/different

viernes, 6 de enero de 2017


Driverless cars or self-driving cars have been seen in many sci-fi films and they were regarded as a man's dream. Now this dream can become a reality, but...


Listening exercise to do: Driverless cars (6 Minute English, BBC Learning English)

Related articles to read about the issue:


Episode 170104 / 04 January 2017   >>>  Expressions presented: mock-up, social isolation & daredevils.

USE OF ENGLISH (B2). Fill in the gaps with only one appropriate word. For more exercises search in my site.

            The job sounded interesting: with a fashion house (1) _________ the city centre. The telephone conversations I (2) __________ had with them were relaxed and friendly, and the letter from the boss had also been friendly (3) __________ . He had invited me to visit the office and join some of them for lunch. The appointment was (4) _________ twelve o’clock.
            I naturally thought long and hard about (5) ____________ to wear. In the fashion business, of course, you were expected to be smart. The question was (6) ___________ to be businesslike, or fashionable. There was something (7) ___________ to think about, too. I had to get there (8) _____________ train and bus. The journey was over two hours, and that affects the clothes you choose.
            In the end, I decided (9) ____________ wear my most expensive clothes. These were a pair of boots, a pair of fashion jeans which had cost me a week’s salary, a hand-made sweater and a coat. I was not (10) __________ satisfied with my appearance, but at (11) ____________ everything was new and expensive.
            In fact, I realized (12) ____________ my arrival that I had chosen exactly the wrong clothes. The men in the office (13) _____________ wearing dark suits and ties. The women were in business suits.
            The boss was just (14) ___________ friendly as his letter had been. We looked (15) _____________ the offices, chatted about the business, and finally went out for lunch. They had chosen a smart restaurant nearby, where the boss was (16) _________ well known. The restaurant manager greeted him (17) ____________ name. Then he caught sight of me. He shook his head apologetically, and smiled. Sorry, he said, the house rules were quite (18) ______________. No one in jeans would be admitted.
            I (19) _____________ the way out, and we started looking for somewhere (20) ___________ to eat.


Solutions to the exercises in the previous post:

WORD FORMATION: 1. similarity  ,   2. communication  ,   3. apparently  ,   4. astonishment   ,   5. intelligence   ,   6. development   ,   7.corrections   ,   8. refusal     9. angrily

VOCABULARY:  1. A   2. C   3. D    4. B     5. A    6. B    7. C    8. B    9. C   10. A   11. C  12. D