Saturday, May 26, 2007

Carriages & Coaches

Last class we did some grammar, readings, etc. In the reading about Dorothea Dix, there was a sentence that said she traveled by "..., coach, carriage, ..." Someone asked what was the difference between a coach and a carriage. I said that I thought that one was a closed vehicle, and the other wasn't. Vanina said that I shouldn't make things up : ). I must say that I was wrong, the one that is closed is the stagecoach. Carriage has a more general meaning, it’s a vehicle with wheels that is pulled by a horse, used in former times. And coach is just a type of carriage, a large one according to the Longman, but the Merrian-Webster says it is a large usually closed four-wheeled horse-drawn carriage having doors in the sides and an elevated seat in front for the driver.

More information and links on the Vocabulary page of the class wiki:

And finally, this is the picture that appears on the Longman’s CD, Vanina, as you can see I was wrong but I wasn't making it up : )

See you next week. Alejandro.
PS: Yes, something is wrong with me, I’m googling about carriages at 2 in the morning. : )

Monday, May 21, 2007

Mini Test

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Next Week

Dear all,

As you already know, I'm traveling to Córdoba this Monday to attend the first
Congress on Applied Technology in Language Teaching that is held in Argentina. I really hate to leave you, but I think it is essential for us teachers to keep abreast of the latest developments in our field. I strongly believe the successful integration of electronic tools in language classes can enhance students' performance by fostering authentic communication and providing access to a wide array of multimedia material.

Anyway, everything is set for you to go on working, so here's the plan for the week:

Monday (20.30-22.00)
You'll take your first
mini-test at the computer lab.
The mini-test will feature the following tasks:

Reading: 1 reading passage (20 min.)

Listening: 1 conversation
1 lecture (15 min. approx.)

Speaking: 1 Independent Task
2 Integrated Tasks (15 min. approx.)

Writing: 1 Independent Writing (30 min.)
At the end of the test you'll check your scores on the reading and listening tasks. Please, write them down since Leda is going to keep a record of your scores. As regards the speaking and listening tasks, you'll record your responses and print your essays so that I can correct them the following week.
Important: Please, be punctual so that you can do the whole test within the time allotted.
Try to do your best and enjoy the experience!
Beatriz will meet you in room E2 at the usual time. Please, bring your book and booklet and remember to do Vocabulary Ex. 8.
Do not hesitate to leave your comments or questions here. I'll keep in touch throughout the week. I'm really going to miss you a lot. (I mean it!)
Good luck!!

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

How do you feel about having a class wiki?

I'm sure all of you have heard about Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia anybody can edit.

A wiki is then a fully-editable user-generated website that allows a group of people to share and build knowledge collaboratively. For example, I'm sure each of you keeps a record of new vocabulary. What would happen if every student added a word to a common vocabulary page on a daily basis? We would soon have a huge resource of relevant vocabulary. The same would happen with writing tasks and extra reading resources.

Anyway, this is just a suggestion. You can visit our baby wiki at . I just started it today, so I could only add a couple of pages. Once in the wiki, click on the sidebar on the right to see the pages. Also, the default home page features two videos: one on how to edit a wiki and the other on the use of wikis in education. Have a look!

I'll send you the password by mail just in case you want to give it a try.