Sunday, January 27, 2008

Dogs... do you like them?

Hello, everybody! Surfing around the net I found this interesting website about words and their meanings. It's part of Voice Of America and it's called Special English. It helps people learn American English while they learn about American life and stay informed about world news and developments in science. It provides users with information they cannot find elsewhere.

There, I had the chance to read and listen to this show: Dog Talk: Life in a Dog-Eat-Dog World. This VOA Special English program, WORDS AND THEIR STORIES, was written by Jill Moss and read by Faith Lapidus.

There you can read about the many uses of the word DOG in different expressions. As I mention before this is a podcast which means you can listen to the article or download it to your computer or I pod to listen to later.

Any way, here there are some of the things I learned from it and wanted to share with you.
  1. Dog’s life: carefree existence. Dogs have no troubles or responsibilities. They can come and go as they please, sleep all day, and never have to work.
  2. Dog-eat-dog world: That means many people are competing for the same things, like good jobs.
  3. Work like a dog: according to this a person has to work really hard to be successful.
  4. Dog-tired: When you work really hard you will feel like a really tired dog.
  5. Sick as a dog: you feel really sick.
  6. Every dog has its day. This means that every person enjoys a successful period during his or her life.
  7. You can never teach an old dog new tricks. using this expression means that you believe that older people do not like to learn new things and will not change the way they do things.
  8. Meaner than a junkyard dog: People who are unkind or uncaring can be described this way.
  9. His bark is worse than his bite: Sometimes a person appears to be mean and threatening but is really not so bad.
  10. In the Doghouse: married people used this term when they are angry at each other and they may not treat each other nicely until they apologize to each other.
  11. To let sleeping dogs lie: It means it's better to leave things as they are.
  12. The dog days of summer: these are the hottest days of the year.
  13. To rain cats and dogs: we use this when it rains really hard.
Do you know any other expressions or terms using the word dog in it? Please, share it with us.
* photo by BryonRealey

Monday, January 21, 2008

Common Craft videos...Excellent!

We are going to start posting a series of little videos from a series called "Common Craft Show" by Lee Lefever, which can be watched, listened to and read. They explain some basic things about using some of the tools we use in class or the use of web 2.0 tools.

Here it is the first one:

After you watch the video, tell us about how you use photos and if you think that this video is teaching you something.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

When do you use an apostrophe?

Hello, There! Well, I found this question at the Wikianswers site.
There you can ask a question or find interesting questions like this one. It is indee a very interesting question...... I found out that apostrophes have three uses:

1) to form possessives of nouns
a)add 's to the singular form of the word (even if it ends in -s): For example: Doris's class, the girl's book.
b) add 's to the plural forms that do not end in -s:
the children's game, the mice's tails
c) add ' to the end of plural nouns that end in -s:
houses' roofs , three friends' letters
d) add 's to the end of compound words:
my brother-in-law's money ?
e) add 's to the last noun to show joint possession of an object:
Todd and Anne's apartment

2) to show the omission of letters
Apostrophes are used in contractions. A contraction is a word (or set of numbers) in which one or more letters (or numbers) have been omitted. The apostrophe shows this omission. Contractions are common in speaking and in informal writing. To use an apostrophe to create a contraction, place an apostrophe where the omitted letter(s) would go. Here are some examples:
don't = do not
I'm = I am
he'll = he will
who's = who is
shouldn't = should not
didn't = did not
could've= could have
'60 = 1960

3) to indicate certain plurals of lowercase letters.
Forming plurals of lowercase letters Apostrophes are used to form plurals of letters that appear in lowercase; , e.g. "three ps" versus "three p's." To form the plural of a lowercase letter, place 's after the letter. Here are some examples:

p's and q's = a phrase indicating politeness, possibly from "mind your pleases and thankyous"?
Nita's mother constantly stressed minding one's p's and q's.
three Macintosh G4s = three of the Macintosh model G4
There are two G4s currently used in the writing classrom.
many &s = many ampersands
That printed page has too many &s on it.
the 1960s = the years in decade from 1960 to 1969
The 1960s were a time of great social unrest.
Don't use apostrophes for possessive pronouns or for noun plurals.

* taken from
* Image taken from:

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Reuters... Oddly enough videos!

These are crazy news... funny news....funky news...odd news... we all love this, right?
Have fun and get amazed. There are a lot of interesting things happening in the world.

Learn languages and read about the Olympic Games

Visiting the official site for the Olympic Games I got a cool surprise .... you can learn some basic expressions in other languages. This is what they say.....

The "Learn Foreign Languages with Fuwa" channel will provide tools for users of the official website to acquire basic conversation skills in Putonghua, English, and French. The latter two versions of "Learn Foreign Languages with Fuwa" will offer non-Chinese speakers the resources to learn a new Chinese phrase each day. Likewise, Chinese website users will be able to learn simple, useful phrases that might come in handy next summer with visitors from around the world.
In this site you can find little conversations and the topics are: Salutations, Transportation, Hotel Check-in, Spectator Etiquette, Urgent -Emergent Situations. So what are you waiting for? Go visit the site and learn a little bit of English, French and Chinese.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Go Venezuela go! Girls and Boys go to Beijing!

Frank Solomona wrote on his blog Rapids Volleyball that ......Venezuela will have both its Volleyball teams at Beijing Olympic Games. A first time ever for the Men’s team, qualified in Argentina, and the same for the Women’s squad, which won as well the South American Olympic Qualification Tournament.

Can you believe it? Isn't it exciting? Our country is participating in the next Beijing Olympic Games. Let's congratulate our volleyball teams and wish them the best luck in the next Olympic Games. I used to play it when I was in high school, but once I started the university I didn't play it anymore. Sometimes I wish I had more time to play sports... I just watch them on TV.

What do you think? Do you like volleyball? Do you play it?

Get the word and help United Nations to help the hungry

This is your chance of practicing your English and helping the hungry to get some food.
FreeRice is a sister site of the world poverty site,

FreeRice has two goals:

  1. Provide English vocabulary to everyone for free.
  2. Help end world hunger by providing rice to hungry people for free.

Getting your badge! Having fun with Mashups!!

More cool tools to create great looking homeworks.....

You can use some of these tools provided by flickr to create new ways to hand in your homework. These are tools that work with photos. We can make posters, or badges or many interesting things.

Now, let's find out what mashups are....well, according to ....
they combine content from multiple web sources with Web Integration.

mashups* that use Flickr images. Here is just a sampling of a few …
  • Mappr - takes Flickr images and allows you to paste them on a map
  • Flickr Color Pickr - lets you find public photos in Flickr that match a specific color.
  • Montagr – create a photo mosaics from photos found on Flickr.
  • Poster Maker with inspiration sayings (add in any picture and saying
I have to thank the people from Classroom learning 2.0 where i found these examples ... they are a great idea.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Want to go to the UK?

Hello, everybody! Happy New Year to you all! Wish you the best for the new year.

Well, how about a little project for the New Year?... British Council has a way to take you and two friends there. How? All you have to do is record a video explaining why learning English is important and upload it at Youtube .

The best video will win a four week work attachment in Naked, a famous and awarded advertising agency in the UK. among the other pries, there are four weeks English course in the UK and scholarships here in Venezuela but in Caracas.

Do you want to participate in this adventure and go visit Prince Charles, the Queen, ride a double deck bus or visit Abey Road?

This is how... go to Go Viral UK and read the terms and conditions. But hurry up this contest has been opened since November 2007 and will close on January 31 st 2008 in Mexico, Colombia and Venezuela. You will be competing against the students from Mexico and Colombia. Go Venezuela, go Maracaibo ... we can make it... if you need any help with your English or ideas on tech problems don't hesitate to ask me.

So, what are you waiting for? Go ahead and make your dreams come true.