Showing posts from November, 2009

Advanced Use of English Part 3

Word formation practice from Hibernia here. You can also use the FCE material added on 25 November.
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Things to Remember 2: Space...

Presentation Matters

Remember, there is a Distance Test for writing. Can you - - count the number of paragraphs in your writing from a couple of metres away?- get someone to tell you what it is (letter, article) from how it looks from a distance?Stand on the far side of your living room and look at your writing to check!

First USe of English Part 4

Extra practice on word formation here.
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Formal vs. Informal Language

Reports, proposals, letters and Emails - all of them need some level of formal English at times. Try the exercises inthis pageof the Flo Joe website for some practice of vocabulary and structures. Come back to us with doubts and questions.

First: Writing a Story

Story writing in 180 word is a challenge. Amongst other things, you need to think about
- Am I writing first or third person? (It may depend on the question).- Should I use a formal or informal tone?- What kind of linking words do I need?- Which vocabulary is the target?- Which grammar is the target?- Which vocabulary will impress? Here's one: "I had never felt so nervous before in my life...!" Write your story (around 120-180 words). What do think would be the answers to 1-6 above?
Here are our answers to the points above - (roll over to see them) First personProbably informal - it sounds like an anecdote.As a result, lots of informal linking - avoid long ones like furthermore/neverthelessPast tenses (note the option to go into reported speech and third conditional or wish)words connected to nervousPhrasal Verbs, as always For ideas and inspiration you could do worse than take a look at some minisagas. Visit the British Council's mini-saga website. Mini - sagas - stori…

Advanced: Use of English Part 3

All the fun of Brian's favourite - word formation! - with a CAE Part 3 from Hibernia in Czech Republic.
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FCE Use of English Part 2

An example of an Open Cloze test from Hibernia in the Czech Republic.
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Formality: Giving Bad News

Some excellent work from Advanced tonight (but, confession time, some terribly untidy boardwork by the teacher) produced this superb formalised version of

"I can't..."
Unfortunately, I'm afraid I have to tell you it looks like we may not be able to...
OK, it's too much for one sentence really, but lots of useful bad news English. Good work everyone!

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Things to Remember 1: Dot, dot, dot...

Something we see in homework quite a lot: lists or groups of examples finishing with three dots like this...

Be careful! Unless you actually want to give the impression

"the rest of the list is obvious"
or "You know how this sentence will end, so I don't need to finish it for you"
always use words - and so onoramongst othersare two options.

Advanced: Collocations

Collocations and Emphasis

Some vocabulary work this week. Visitthis page and take a look through the many collocations on offer. You should stop reading when you reach
"Here are example sentences"We want you to have a a go at writing your own sentences before you look at the examples!
Think about the type of writing - Letter, Report, Email, Article, Essay, Review - and how you might fit the collocation in to your work.Examples from us next week.

First: Formal Letters and Emails

Go here for a good collection of language.

So, on the page above, can you find, in order: As many variations as possible on the wordsatisfy.A phrase for as a resultA word for topicA phrase inviting someone to contact youA formal verb for askAn alternative to regardingA very impressive substitute for I can'tAnd, as a more difficult challenge, can you find any word order that is formal? This is pretty tricky but there are examples there. Feedback next week.

First: Use of English Part 3

You are (or will soon be) working on word formation exercises around now. Here's some extra practice from Hibernia.
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First and Advanced: Informal Letters

Feedback from recent homework

Things to take care of informal letters. Think about why. First sentences should - what?Three dots at the end of a sentence - good or bad?What are some of the magic words for making your paragraphs flow?Imperatives. "Answer me, then we can organise our trip." Informal?Abbreviations "BTW" and emoticons ";-)" Appropriate?Final sentences should - what?What's white space for?"Look(ing) forward to +?""Kisses"Make a list of items to check in your final 5 or ten minutes.
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