REMEMBER to read some piece of news every weekend. Check our PRESS site and find some interesting article to read.
Also, try to read a book during Christmas and Easter. Write a review using for example this format
and language.


Learning to listen

This year you need to develop the HABIT of listening to English EVERY DAY.
You can work on your English in various different ways as you listen.
If you increase your hours of listening to the language, you will be helping your mind to learn unconsciously too, which also means that you will tend to reduce the amount of literal translation (eek!) that you do, which reduces the risk of you making grammar mistakes, too! Translating from Spanish literally is terrible for your English because you transfer the syntax (word order) of Spanish into English instead of using English syntax.
You should use the same audio material in different ways (never before doing the classroom listening activities, but always after this!). Try to learn as much Useful Language (chunks of language, or sentences) as possible. Then underline it in the transcript. Finally, underline a sentence you were not able to figure out from just listening and then try to learn it by ear.
In class, take notes in English, of course. Develop the habit of reviewing your notes (reading them aloud in your mind) to check for mistakes and to remember what you learned. This will also allow you to know what questions you have for me, and which you can solve by your own means -- by using the internet, reference books, asking someone... Use your notebook as effective support for your learning.

Learning to speak
You need to listen to English a lot to be good at speaking.
You need to do a lot of Listen & Repeat (L&R) with all kinds of audios and audiovisuals. Use your textbook audios for this, on a daily basis, as well as two or three different podcasts. But then, you should also be watching at least a TV series episode a minimum of twice a week, to learn sentences from it! And every now and then, a documentary, a movie, an interview, the news...
_ Practice re-telling after your listening activities.
_ Learn poems and stories by ear by heart!
_ Learn lines from movies and TV series by heart!
_ Learn the lyrics of songs (watch out, songs are tricky)

Improving your range: Brainstorming on Language
For the productive skills, writing and speaking, you should learn to make your range richer. Pay attention to the kind of language you are using and see which other items are missing and which you can add, anyway. For instance, if you are narrating in the past, avoid just using the past simple ALL THE TIME! Make sure you use a past continuous here, a few modals in the past...
Brainstorm on language before speaking and writing. Think: How many tenses can I use? How many modals, and which? Any compounds, irregular plurals, collocations or expressions? Am I using clauses? (conditional clauses, relative clauses, time clauses, clauses of result and contrast...) Is my vocabulary repetitive? Can I use a synonym now to avoid repetition? Am I always using the same structure?

Don'ts for your Writing
NEVER write your piece twice: the draft and then the clean copy. Don't! This year practice this:
1. THINKING BEFORE WRITING (brainstorming on language and on ideas)
- taking notes based on your brainstorming on language (chunks of language)
- doing an outline
- jotting down some more language chunks that you want to make sure you use
2. WRITING YOUR PIECE in the school template
3. EDITING/PROOFREADING IT in at least three readings, one checking for spelling and grammar mistakes, another checking for things making sense and reference, another for punctuation (connected to intonation, so learn to read out loud in silence! Read aloud in your head).
Don't use white-out liquid. Just get used to crossing out what's wrong. Learn to cross out neatly. Crossing out is OK in exams.
Do's for your Writing
Writing has three consecutive stages: before (think), during, and after (proofread). If you become a good proofreader, you will correct the mistakes you can actually avoid by paying attention!
Each written text has a structure. As an intro, read this:,
a job-application cover letter written as an informal letter!! 0_0 Notice tone, register too

Do's for your Speaking
Learn to listen to yourself as you speak and fix your mistakes when you hear them! (Record yourself, to learn to listen to yourself.) And as you listen to yourself, practice correcting your mistakes on the spot. When we communicate with people and we make mistakes, we HAVE TO fix them if we actually can! When we don't, communication is a disaster. So learn how to do this! It takes some practice.
Oral texts have a structure.Remember this. Both your presentations and your interactions.

Lists of Mistakes (LoM) / Oral Drilling / Useful Language
You should put together an LoM with material from your Writings (my, your corrections, peers' corrections) and Speakings (my, your feedback; peers' feedback). A LoM is not about independent words: you need to copy your mistake in context, cross it out in red, and then copy the complete thing correctly, underlining the corrected item. More: you can add more sentences (Useful Language) where that mistake is not made (taken from your listenings and readings) and you can do some oral drilling around the mistake. We'll talk about all this in class.
Some LoM's on

Communicative Strategies
These are things you do to succeed in communicating! You can L&R to these 3 episodes:
to overcome communication problems. Imagine different scenarios, e.g. need time to think, you can't find a word, you need to clarify a misunderstanding...


  • **Derrick Coyle, Raven Master**external image icuk.jpg

    "Derrick Coyle has a rather unusual job. He is a raven master at the Tower of London which means he's

    dedicated to looking after the Tower's unique feature - ravens."

    external image raventower.jpg
  • The Catering Web Quiz - Train your English comprehension - HotPot exercises with videos


    (Jean Le Mauff - Ac. Toulouse)
  • **Taxi drivers** external image icuk.jpg

    "In a recent survey London taxi drivers were revealed to have the most stressful job in the country.

    But why is this? Find out about the life of a London taxi driver in this edition of London Life."

    - with the script

    external image taxi2.jpg

  • **Everyday English in Conversation** - Listening

    Eating /Emotions / Fashion / Friendship / Health / Housing / Life / Memory / Money
    Romance / Shopping / Time / Traveling / Vacation / Weather / Work

    (Focus English)
  • People and Occupations- with AUDIO (

    + **Other page**
    external image jobs4.jpg

  • The interview- with AUDIO

    "Have you been for an interview for a job? Did you enjoy it or were you very nervous? What does this person find difficult?

    Find out by doing these four exercises..."

    (Caroline Brown Listening Lessons)
    external image jobinterview.jpg

  • Job interview - with interactive questions (
  • Task Town is for students who want to participate with the audio. (
    As you listen you need to make choices or interact with the audio. Have Fun!
    Jobs People Do

  • **Part-time Job** (
    "Listen to some information about new jobs at a job center. What job would you want?"
  • **jobs** - a lesson proposed by Randall S. Davis (esl-lab) with :
    - a list of commonly-used vocabulary with a recording of the words in RealMedia format.
    - a short quiz to test students' comprehension of some of the words,
    - a Follow-Up exercise for expanding students' use of the vocabulary in a conversation with a partner or group.
  • English Listening Quizzes: A Job Opportunity - 1 + A Job Opportunity - 2 - interactive
  • **Listening Quizzes** : Does he like his job? (
  • **Audio tests** : Jobs & ages (tolearnenglish)

    external image test.gif
  • **Work** (BBC)
    Listen 1: Talking about work conditions (part 1)
    Listen 2: Talking about work conditions (part 2)
    Read 1: Job applications
    Speak 1: Pronouncing 'have to'

    external image jobinterview4.jpg


LISTENING : external image headphones.gif
  • Family Charactersexternal image listenpic.jpg - "Ruth discusses the personalities in her family."



  • Family Traits external image listenpic.jpg - "Adrienne talks about the different personalities in her family."


  • My Dad - a short story (Présent simple + Présent BE + ing)

    "Lottie is 10 years old. She lives in England with her dad and her sister.

    Read and listen to Lottie telling us about her dad. Is your dad like Lottie's dad?"

    + Activities

    (British Council)
    • **Modern British Families**
      "The past 20 years have seen enormous changes in the lives and structures of families in Britain, and the traditional model is no longer true in many cases."
    • Facts :
      • **Shakes were spiked, cops say** external image icus.jpg
        "Two Placer County teenage girls were arrested for allegedly using drugged milkshakes to knock out the parents of one of the girls so they could log on to the Internet..."
      • Pakistani couple kill daughter who talked to a boy - 2 November 2012 external image Flag_Pakistanp.jpg

        "A Pakistani couple killed their teenage daughter (16) by pouring acid on her face and body after they caught her talking to a boy...

        Almost 1,000 women lost their lives last year in so-called "honour killings" in the conservative South Asian nation, according to the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan. Activists say the actual number is much higher as most cases go unreported."

      • **NY state approves gay marriage**(BBC) external image icus.jpg

        "New York become the sixth and most populous US state to allow same-sex marriage, after a Senate vote on the controversial issue."

        Places where gay marriage is legal in the US :
        • New York
        • New Hampshire
        • Massachusetts
        • Connecticut
        • Iowa
        • Vermont
        • Washington DC
      • external image gaymarriage.jpg

      • **Indian man with 39 wives**in Baktawang, Mizoram, India external image mizoramindiamap.jpg external image flagindia.jpg

        "Indian man has 94 children and 33 grandchildren under one roof...

        The family, all 167 of them, consumes around 200lb of rice and more than 130lb of potatoes a day. "

        external image indianfamily.jpg
      • Twins Days Festival external image ohiomap2.jpg

        "Annual gathering draws thousands to Twinsburg, Ohio...

        Every year, twins, triplets, and other multiples from around the country travel with their families to the northern Ohio town—named for identical twin brothers from Connecticut—to compete, celebrate, and socialize."

        - with photo galleries

        external image twinsohio.jpg


Reading comprehension



Past tenses

Chart with present, past and future tenses
Can you distinguish different past tenses?

Verb Tense Overview with Examples

Simple Present
Simple Past

I study English every day.
Two years ago, I studied English in England.

Present Continuous
Past Continuous

I am studying English now.
I was studying English when you called yesterday.

Present Perfect
Past Perfect

I have studied English in several different countries.
I had studied a little English before I moved to the U.S.

Present Perfect Continuous
Past Perfect Continuous

I have been studying English for five years.
I had been studying English for five years before I moved to the U.S.


  • Supercomputer 'can predict world events'

    "Feeding a supercomputer with news stories could help predict major world events, according to US research."

  • **12 Events That Will Change Everything, Made Interactive** - "What event do you think will change the world?"

    external image futurevents.jpg
  • Is this the sustainable city of the future?

    "According to a New York design group, this is how tomorrow's metropolis may look – just don't ask how it will work...

    Terreform One, a New York non-profit design group led by 38-year-old architect Mitchell Joachim, offers answers to almost everything to do with cities and sustainability. Its prolific output of ideas includes blimps creeping nose-to-tail around cities, with seats hanging off them just above the ground so that people can jump on and off at will..."






**Masters of the universe: meet the world's best-paid men**
"Who are these men? They are called hedge fund managers - in other words, they are investors who buy and sell all manner of financial instruments with the express aim of making money for their clients, and for themselves."
+ What can you buy for $4bn ?
+ Hedge fund rich list 2009

Hot tubs and walk-in wardrobes top lottery winners' wish lists
"Hot tubs, walk-in wardrobes and pet dogs are the most popular items bought by lottery winners, a survey has found."

**British ticket holder scoops £148m EuroMillions jackpot** external image icuk.jpg
"According to the Sunday Times Rich List 2012, the ticketholder will now be wealthier than the Duke of Cambridge and Prince Harry, who have land inheritance valued at £28m, actor Daniel Radcliffe with £54m and singer Adele at £20m.
They will also be richer than Lewis Hamilton at £55m, footballer Wayne Rooney at £45m, at Twilight actor Robert Pattinson at £40m."

EuroMillions winners: we are now 'officially retired' - with a video external image video.jpg
"Dave and Angela Dawes reveal what they plan to do with the £101 million they have won from the EuroMillions jackpot."
"The money will help out their families and friends...
we've got 15 to 20 people that we are sort of going to make millionaires...
we're going to buy a house over there (in Portugal) and we're going to get married next June..."


Crime and punishment

Vocabulary revision: Click here
More vocabulary lists: HERE

Flashcards: Click here

Quick quiz: Click here

Crossword: Click here

Watch the following videos to practise the vocabulary on crime and law: