lunes, 27 de febrero de 2012

Using conditional sentences

There are several ways of the conditionals in English. Here you have a diagram:

Type 0 or
General truth; you can substitute if for when

If you boil water
it evaporates
Type 1 or 
Possible condition; it is likely to happen

If I have time
I’ll go to the cinema
Type 2 or
Improbable condition; it is very hypothetical this could happen

Simple past
If I could buy a new car
Simple conditional
I’d take a van
Type 3
(not included)
Impossible conditional; this is referred to the past and it is more connected with regrets

Past perfect
If I’d known you were coming
Perfect conditional
I would have made your favourite dish
(not included)
The condition is a regret but the results are in the present
Past perfect
If I’d thought about that twice
Simple conditional
I wouldn’t have so many problems

When we talk about using present or future, it means that they might be in the simple, continuous, perfect or perfect continuous form, depending on the message.

Now you can do these exercises to practise:

You can have a lot of examples of conditional in songs; here you have some:
  • UNREAL CONDITIONAL: "If I Were a Rich Man" with susbtitles; click here
  •  Another exaqmple: "What if You " click here

jueves, 16 de febrero de 2012

Carnival is wonderful celebration, full of musicand fun. Here you have some activities to enjoy this festival.
Dictionary Activity – CARNIVAL - working with words
1. What are the main ingredients of a pancake?
2. When is Shrove Tuesday?
3. What is another name for Pancake Day?
4. What do people use to throw their pancakes, in a pancake race?
5. A float is a special carnival vehicle. It has other meanings. Which of these people does not use a float:
a. a swimmer                    b. a fisherman                   c. a farmer
6. How do people move in a procession? (an adverb)
7. People wear masks in a carnival. Which of these collocations does not exist?
a. party mask                    b. death mask                   c. oxygen mask                d. face mask
8. How many days does Lent last?
9. What is Ash Wednesday?
10. Is the word carnival pronounced the same in both US English and British English?

Go to this video which talks about British Pancake race and fill in the gaps of the activity (intermediate):
1. Lent is a time for _________________ things.
2. Shrove Tuesdays is the day for cleaning out the _________________________.
3. Pancake races appeal to people’s ___________________ nature!
4. Everyone’s got ‘a ___________________ tooth’!
5. People in Britain have been celebrating Pancake Day for __________________ years.
6. The tradition started in ____________________ when a woman ran to church holding a  _________________!
7. Donald O’Kelly is planning to give up __________________________ for Lent.
8. Pancake Day is a time to _________________________.
The answers for these exercises are below these other exercises of listening

Here you have a listening about Venice; there are a couple of exercises to do with it:


Dictionary Activity – CARNIVAL
1. Flour, eggs and milk. Go to this video to make a pancake: (easy)
Pancakes are thin cakes made from a batter of milk (or milk and water), eggs and flour which is then cooked in a frying pan or on a griddle until golden brown on both sides. You can buy special pancake pans which are shallow and non-stick with curved sides. French pancakes are made slightly thinner and are called crêpes. Scotch pancakes are small and thick, usually cooked on a griddle and sometimes flavoured with sultanas or raisins. American pancakes are normally served at breakfast. They tend to be light and fluffy, served in generous stacks with bacon and maple syrup. There is also the Russian blini, Chinese pancakes served with Peking duck, Italian crespelle and so on. Pancakes are traditionally eaten in the UK on Shrove Tuesday.  ( taken from: )

2. The day before the beginning of Lent.
3. Shrove Tuesday or Mardi Gras.
What is Mardi Gras?   :   Mardi Gras, also known as Shrove TuesdayCarnival, and even Pancake Day in the UK, is an annual festival which will be celebrated on 21st February in 2012. Falling just before Lent, it traditionally marks the last opportunity for fun and feasting before 40 days of "self-denial". Mardi Gras means "Fat Tuesday" in French (Remember that meat is forbidden during Lent, at least on Friday).
Festivities begin at the beginning of February, leading up to Mardi Gras day, and consist of parades, dancing in the street, costumes and masked balls. The modern Carnival tradition developed in Europe in the Middle ages, and is celebrated mainly in Roman Catholic communities in Europe and the Americas today. Some of the most famous celebrations are held in Nice (France), Cologne (Germany), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) and New Orleans (USA)
Mardi Gras Video  :   Here's our latest video for little kids, with a Mardi Gras mask theme. Can the kids work out who's behind the mask?      Who's Behind The Mask?
4. A frying pan. Here you have a Pancake race :
5. (c) a farmer
6. slowly; instead of “procession” it is more usual the word “parade” (desfile)
7. party mask
8. 40 days; Lent means “Cuaresma
9. The first day of Lent
10. No   /ˈkɑːrnəvəl / (American English);   /ˈkɑːnɪvəl/ (British English) But none of them is in plural.

1. giving up           2. fridge                 3. quirky                4. sweet                5. five hundred          6. 1445 / frying pan              
7. pancakes          8. Indulge   (Loolk up the words in a dictionary if necessary)

domingo, 5 de febrero de 2012

The difference between BEEN TO and GONE TO

Here you have a useful presentation on powerpoint about the difference between BEEN TO and GONE TO when you use present perfect. I think it's quite clear and you can  have some practise as well. Click on the link

Hope it helps you!

Preparing certificate exams

Some people are looking for exams to practise with in order to prepare your final exam to get the certificate of "nivel básico". Here you have the links to take the sample exam in Euskadi. Remember it's not the same as the one we have in the Community of Madrid but it helps to practise.