Saturday, 12 December 2015

Animals on the Underground

Yesterday Animals on the Underground, the hidden world of animals within the iconic London underground map, were introduced to the current 4th Year ESO students at Cardenal Spínola School. 

On Wednesday the students had been given a closed envelope with a gift and a secret message within. They had been told not to open the envelopes until they were at home and not to speak to each other about the message. The present was a London tube map and the message asked them to bring the map to the next English class with an animal inside.

Yesterday the students brought the maps with lovely drawings and pictures of several animals. First they showed each other their animals. Next I told them the story of Paul Middlewick, a man who found an elephant within the London underground map while he was waiting for the train on the platform and staring at a large tube map. I said the elephant was the first in a long list of animals  within the map, the Animals on the Underground.

Finally I displayed the Animals's website on the classroom's screen and let the students check out all the animals. I am pretty sure our friends Nick and Paul will love to know the students were more than excited and started a joyful applause as they were carefully watching the animals. When I told the pupils it was great they had enjoyed the Animals so, they said "Thanks teacher for this wonderful activity. We have never heard such a beautiful story as Paul's"

If you want to see more pics with the animals that the students brought within their tube maps, browse our Flickr site.

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Poppy Day at Cardenal Spínola School

The 11th of November is a very important date across the United Kingdom; it is a day to remember and honour all the soldiers who have died in the line of duty. Ceremonies and silences are held everywhere: people are asked to stop what they are doing to remember. The day is called Remembrance Day and also Poppy Day.

Why Poppy Day, you may wonder. When World War I finished thousands of poppies bloomed across the worst battlefields: they became a symbol for the blood spilled in the war. That's why every 11th November everywhere and everything around the country is decorated with poppies: all kinds of public places, the different means of transport or monuments and memorials. Many people wear poppies too in order to show respect.

In the 4th ESO English classes at our school we have done a couple of special activities. First our London friend Uly sent four tweets telling the students about Remembrance Day. At home the pupils wrote the messages down in their books and then, yesterday 11th November, we read and reviewed them in class so that the pupil would find out what Poppy Day is meant to be and why it is so called.

Second, handcrafted poppies were made for each student at 4th ESO. After reading Uly's tweets in the English class the students were given the craft poppies and they wore them during the whole school day.

Browse our Flickr page for more photos on these activities.

Mind Mapping Emily Fry 2

The first unit at English 1st year ESO lets the students find out about a few teenagers around the world. First they read two texts on Piret, a girl from Estonia, and Emiliano, a boy from Argentina. Then they discover about Susanwho is from Liverpool, and Kevinwho is from Manchester -both cities are in the north of England-. Finally the students read an e-mail from Emily Fry, a 14 years old girl from Brighton: it's a city in the south of England.

After reading and working with Emily's e-mail the students are work in teams in order to make mind maps on her. They use different resources to show all kinds of ideas on Emily Fry.

First the pupils place the topic -Emily Fry- in the centre of the map. Then, they make branches off the topic: each brach shows a few ideas and has its own colour and lots of picturesWhen the students finish their mind maps they prepare and give their presentations. The students speak about Emily Fry and also about the design of their mind maps.

Browse our Flicker page and see many pics on this activity. You will like them!

Saturday, 31 October 2015

Mind Mapping London 3

The 1st workshop within the project Workshop Undergrounding London is Introducing London. The students at 4th year ESO find out lots of interesting facts about the capital city of the UK while doing a variety of activities, from a starting quiz on the city to planning a young couple's honeymoon trip in London.

For the third year in a row the students have also worked in teams in order to make mind maps on London. They have used several resources to visually outline all kinds of ideas on the city. 

First the pupils place its topic in the centre of the map -the name of the city, a picture which identifies it, or both-. Then they draw branches off the topic, each one displaying a main idea, in a different colour and with its own visual representation. Finally every main branch expands in sub-branchesadding more ideas and concepts to the mind map.

Once the mind maps are finished the students present them in class: they do not only speak about London but also tell their classmates how their maps have been created and what resources they have chosen to make them.

Browse our Flicker page for a few pics of the mind maps in progress and complete. I'm sure you will like them!

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Kevin, a teenager from Manchester

Kevin is a teenager from Manchester, a city in the north-west of England. Kevin is 14 years old and he studies at Central Manchester High School. Kevin lives with his parents and his sister Emma in a beautiful house with a garden. 

On weekdays Kevin gets up early, at 6:45. After breakfast he takes the bus to school. Kevin starts his classes at 8:30. He has six lessons everyday: they are 50 minutes long. After the second and the fourth lessons Kevin has a 20 minutes break. School finishes at 2:10 in the afternoon.

Kevin usually arrives home about 2:30. He eats lunch and then he always does homework and studies his school subjects. On Tuesdays and Thursdays Kevin goes to a music school where he takes guitar lessons. Kevin loves music. His favourite kind of music is pop and he would like to play the guitar with a band when he is older.

Kevin and his family have dinner at 7 in the evening. Then he likes surfing on the internet, reading a book for a while or watching TV with his family. On schooldays Kevin never goes to sleep late, he goes to bed about 10:00.

We already know what Kevin usually does from Monday to Friday. What does he do at the weekend? Use the information in the charts above and below to write paragraphs on Kevin's weekends. Remember you must download and use the worksheet Kevin's weekend for this activity.

Monday, 13 April 2015

On The Beach

In the last few weeks the 1st Year ESO students have been working with there be in the English class. We have done several activities in order to practice and learn both the present and the past forms.

First we focused on the classroom and all the things there. The pupils learnt how to say messages like there is a fan on the ceiling, there are two notice boards on the back wall or there are two speakers on the front wall

Second the students were told to take, draw themselves or download from the internet pictures displaying open fridges. Those pictures were supposed to show the food and the drinks in the fridges on Wednesday the week before. The pupils had to describe their pictures with sentences such as last Wednesday there were a few apples in the fridge, there was little fruit or there weren't any eggs.

Third we did the project On the beach. The students made two pieces of artwork, one of them depicting a beach on a typical summer day in the afternoon and the other one showing the same beach late at night. They used all kinds of resources and their complete products were amazing -check out lots of lovely pics from our Flickr page-. 

Then the pupils prepared a presentation on both artworks with the different patterns of there be and the quantifiers; they had to decide whether to speak about the beach in the afternoon at present and the beach at night in past or the other way. Finally they presented and described their artworks in the English class with sentences like there were many people lying in the sun, there was a big boat in the sea, there are lots of bright stars in the sky or there is a man fishing on a rock. The pupils really loved doing this project and they think it helped them learn about there be in a fun way.

Tuesday, 10 March 2015

From Heathrow Airport to The Wembley School of English

The students at 4th Year ESO have already started their virtual trip to London in order to improve their English at a language school and enjoy all kinds of places and events around the city.

On the first stage of their trip the students pretend to fly to Heathrow airport. When they arrive there they need to ask for information on how to travel from the airport to their language school in north London. The school is called The Wembley School of English and it is near North Wembley underground station on the Bakerloo line.

The students have worked in teams to create role-play stories depicting the situation above and act them out afterwards. First every team was given colour stickers to represent each of the lines within London underground network: the Circle team was given yellow stickers; the Piccadilly team, dark blue stickers; the Bakerloo team, brown stickers; the Victoria team, light blue stickers; the Central team, red stickers; and finally the Hammersmith & City team was given pink stickers.

Then the students wrote the role-play stories. In the stories some pupils play the roles of the Spanish students just arrived at Heathrow airport; the other pupils play the roles of the information assistants who help the students find out the best way to get to their language school from the airport. When the students say that the school is near an underground station, the assistants show them how to travel to their school by tube. They are told to take the Piccadilly line eastbound at the airport and when they get to Piccadilly Circus station they must change for the Bakerloo line and travel northbound to North Wembley station, which is near the school.

Next the students prepared several resources to make the scenery of their performances resemble an airport terminal, its information office and a language school. Finally every team acted their stories out in front of their classmates. Most students said they loved doing this activity. They also think the project helped them improve both their language and acting skills.

The students are already in London and very soon they will start visiting places of interest in the city. We hope they will keep on enjoying these great virtual journeys.

If you want to see some pictures of the performances above, just check out our Flickr page. Thanks!!! 

Friday, 13 February 2015

Bus and His Fridge

Hi you all friends! I hope you are well. Antonio told me that you are now learning about There Be and Quantifiers in the English class. You can see above a picture of my fridge that I took last Wednesday.

There was a lot of fruit because I love it. There were many oranges -they are delicious and really good in winter time-. There were a few apples and some pears. There weren't any kiwis because I invited some friends for dinner the day before and they ate all the kiwis.

In the fridge there were also some vegetables; there were a few carrots, lots of tomatoes -I always eat tomatoes with bread and olive oil for breakfast-, some cucumbers, three peppers and there was a lettuce too.

There were two packs of sausages -I never eat sausages but Antonio´s children like them a lot and they sometimes eat lunch at my house-. There were a few eggs and there was some meat -chicken and beef- but there was little fish. And believe me when I say that there weren't any hamburgers.

There was a little milk and there were a few yogurts but there wasn't any peach juice. There were three cans of coke and four small bottles of non-alcoholic beer. And there were two chocolate bars too: I usually eat some chocolate after lunch -sometimes milk chocolate, sometimes dark chocolate-.

My favorite food is definitely fruit! What about you? What's your favorite food?