Friday, February 26, 2010

English test

Read the instructions and find out how much you can understand listening to speakers from several countries. Then, make the quiz and check your answers. Good luck!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Today is Shrove Tuesday

You might have heard about it. In fact, this day is also known as Pancake Day. It takes place forty-seven days before Easter. In past centuries, Lent was a time of fasting. Both meat and eggs were forbidden throughout six weeks. The tradition was to eat up all your meat on the Monday before Lent, and all your eggs on the Tuesday (in pancakes). Nowadays, the fasting has gone and the eating remains! There is a pancake tossing contest and pancake race in England as well. I know English pancakes are extraordinary wonderful but...I am not going to beat around the bush, I prefer them thicker. So, let's prepare delicious pancakes following the instructions below. The video is very helpful. Enjoy!
Source: Britain, by James O'Driscoll

How To Make American Pancakes

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Poetry for love

"The most beautiful things are those that madness prompts and reason writes."
~ André Gidé, Journals, 1894

From time out of mind, people have expressed their feelings through poetry. As Saint Valentine's day is approaching, this is the moment we were waiting for to send the person you love the most beautiful words ever written. Here there's a selection of poems where you can choose the one you prefer. I would like to take this opportunity to introduce these poets to those who are not acquainted with this sort of reading. I hope you enjoy them!

Alexander Pushkin

A Moment to Remember

A magic moment I remember:
I raised my eyes and you were there.
A fleeting vision, the quintessence
Of all that's beautiful and rare.

I pray to mute despair and anguish
To vain pursuits the world esteems,
Long did I near your soothing accents,
Long did your features haunt my dreams.

Time passed- A rebel storm-blast scattered
The reveries that once were mine
And I forgot your soothing accents,
Your features gracefully divine.

In dark days of enforced retirement
I gazed upon grey skies above
With no ideals to inspire me,
No one to cry for, live for, love.

Then came a moment of renaissance,
I looked up- you again are there,
A fleeting vision, the quintessence
Of all that`s beautiful and rare.

Emily Dickinson


I gave myself to him,
And took himself for pay.
The solemn contract of a life
Was ratified this way

The value might disappoint,
Myself a poorer prove
Than this my purchaser suspect,
The daily own of Love

Depreciates the sight;
But, 'til the merchant buy,
Still fabled, in the isles of spice
The subtle cargoes lie.

At least, 'tis mutual risk,—
Some found it mutual gain;
Sweet debt of Life,—each night to owe,
Insolvent, every noon.

William Shakespeare

Sonnet 130

My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun;
Coral is far more red than her lips' red;
If snow be white, why then her breasts are dun;
If hairs be wires, black wires grow on her head.
I have seen roses damasked, red and white,
But no such roses see I in her cheeks;
And in some perfumes is there more delight
Than in the breath that from my mistress reeks.
I love to hear her speak, yet well I know
That music hath a far more pleasing sound;
I grant I never saw a goddess go;
My mistress, when she walks, treads on the ground.
And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare
As any she belied with false compare.

Christina Georgina Rossetti


Come to me in the silence of the night;
Come in the speaking silence of a dream;
Come with soft rounded cheeks and eyes as bright
As sunlight on a stream;
Come back in tears,
O memory of hope, love of finished years.

O dream how sweet, too sweet, too bitter-sweet,
Whose wakening should have been in Paradise,
Where souls brim-full of love abide and meet;
Where thirsting longing eyes
Watch the slow door
That opening, letting in, lets out no more.

Yet come to me in dreams, that I may live
My very life again though cold in death;
Come back to me in dreams, that I may give
Pulse for pulse, breath for breath:
Speak low, lean low,
As long ago, my love, how long ago.

Sara Teasdale


I am free of love as a bird flying south in the autumn,
Swift and intent, asking no joy from another,
Glad to forget all of the passion of April
Ere it was love-free.

I am free of love, and I listen to music lightly,
But if he returned, if he should look at me deeply,
I should awake, I should awake and remember
I am my lover’s.

Emily Brontë 

Love and Friendship

Love is like the wild rose-briar,
Friendship like the holly-tree—
The holly is dark when the rose-briar blooms
But which will bloom most constantly?

The wild-rose briar is sweet in the spring,
Its summer blossoms scent the air;
Yet wait till winter comes again
And who will call the wild-briar fair?

Then scorn the silly rose-wreath now
And deck thee with the holly's sheen,
That, when December blights thy brow,
He may still leave thy garland green.

Omar Khayyam

A Book of Verse

A book of verse, underneath the bough,
A jug of wine, a loaf of bread - and thou
Beside me singing in the wilderness -
Ah, wilderness were paradise now!

Robert Frost

A Time to Talk

When a friend calls to me from the road
And slows his horse to a meaning walk,
I don’t stand still and look around
On all the hills I haven’t hoed,
And shout from where I am, What is it?
No, not as there is a time to talk.
I thrust my hoe in the mellow ground,
Blade-end up and five feet tall,
And plod: I go up to the stone wall
For a friendly visit.

Happy Saint Valentine's Day!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Love or consumerism?


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Song and winter sport

This video shows South Korean skater, Kim Yu-Na performing an exhibition exercise from the program Scheherazade. The song is by Tori Amos, maybe more well-known as part of Alfonso Cuaron's film original soundtrack, Great Expectations, a modern adaptation from the classic written by Charles Dickens. Kim Yu-Na is one of ice-skating hopes of these next Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver. Although she was born in Bucheon (South Korea), she moved to Toronto (Canada)to go on training at the highest level. She is the 2009 World champion, the 2009 Four Continents champion, a three-time Grand Prix Final champion(2006–2007, 2007–2008, 2009–2010),the 2006 World Junior champion, the 2005-2006 Junior Grand Prix Final champion and a four-time (2002–2005) South Korean national champion. These figures are taken from Wikipedia, but it's for sure there will be more history to be written soon. Good luck for Vancouver Olympics!

Lyrics | Siren lyrics

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Carnival around the world

This festivity takes place before Lent in many Catholic countries. Its date may vary depending on Ash Wednesday. Half-pagan, half religious, carnival is a time of irony, good humour and disinhibition. Although each country celebrates carnival keeping their own traditions, they share the joy of wearing costumes as well as going on carriages on colourful parades
with music around. In other countries, Mardi Gras is celebrated the day before Ash Wednesday. However they use this term to refer to Carnival time too. If you haven't thought about what to wear, here you are some sites of the most popular carnivals in the world and links to get some ideas from. Have fun!
Mardi Gras in New Orleans
Masks to print
Create your masks
Games (clothes)  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Hearts for Haiti

Glitter Graphics

Heart Glitters
This is the motto for our high-school campaign to help Haiti. As you all know, the 14th. February is Saint Valentine's Day. For this reason, the school centre has organised this campaign to raise funds to help that devastated country after the last earthquakes. During the 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 8th. of this month, you can hire your hearts to 4th year diversification students for 0.10€ each. You can send them to your best friends or classmates, to thank someone, if you want to cheer him/her up or even to congratulate someone's marks. The message you want to be sent is up to you! Our students will wait for you next to the reception, at break time. On Friday, 12th. these pupils will just come around the classrooms to deliver your dedicated hearts.
Remember that all the money collected will be paid into a Unicef bank account to help Haiti. We will inform you via the school planks at our centre.
We hope your hearts arrive to Haiti through your classmates. Thanks for your collaboration!

World Cancer Day

As World Health Organization says, we can prevent this disease if we follow these measures:
  • no tobacco use
  • a healthy diet and regular exercise
  • limited alcohol use
  • protection against cancer-causing infections.
If you want to know more, visit the link to this topic
W.H.O. (O.M.S.)
The best action is prevention. Information is a step forward.