first day english class in advanced one “A.1”


I have attended my first English class at Escuela Oficial de Idiomas in Santander. The classroom this year is 105, which is in a kind of cave at the end of a long corridor after going downstairs (it is between ground floor and first floor) Our teacher is Gemma. She has tutorial service on Wednesdays from 5 to 6 P.M. at 5th floor in EOI.

This year I am at A.1 level, i.e Advanced One in the brand new EOI Level System (following the European directives) This new system is aimed at education by skills, i.e: listening/comprehension, reading, writing and speaking. These skills are measured in a compound exam at two dates in term: first in February and second in May. Every skill has its own exam and is evaluated from 0 to 20 points. The exam maximum total score is then 80. One must score 60% to pass. An individual skill’s score cannot be under 50%. If that is the case you must go to September exam for the skill you haven’t pass. 2008 is the first promotion of A.1. The syllabus of A.1 course is going to be online this month or at the beginning of November at most.

striaghtforward advanced cover
striaghtforward advanced cover
Like every year, I’ve got to buy this year the classroom books to follow the course. These green cover books are: Straightforward Upper Intermediate from MacMillan Ed. (Porfolio, Workbook and Student’s Book) The Student’s book has 12 lessons (6 will be evaluated in February and six in May)

I’ve seen that this learning English book series have got a complementary online content which is very interesting and worthwhile. Besides that the editorial company has also got other interesting resource pages like the MacMillan Readers and Macmillan Young Learners.

The reading book, the book we must read and comment on exam and in class is titled The Statement by Brian Moore, Flamingo Ed. I’ve searched the web looking for interesting links about the book. They have shot a film, released in 2003 with the same title, based on the book.

Gemma told us that we are having a invited Scottish English teacher from Glasgow as lecturer this term. She starts in three weeks. She’s going to come to class next week to know us a little. Gemma has told us that she has a light scot accent.

2 comentarios en “first day english class in advanced one “A.1”

  1. After the introduction of the course, we started with a couple of class activities. First our teacher asked for words coming up about Great Britain: Royal Family, football, Houses of Parliament, Big Ben, London Bridge, fish and chips, gentlemen, rain, … Then she asked us about the four countries that made the UK: England, Wales, Scotland an Northern Ireland.

    UK Quiz

    Then we did a UK quiz (From Group Work {Intermediate} by Peter Watcyn-Jomes (c) Penguin Books 2000) with 12 questions that we answered in independent groups (my group was made out of four pupils, including myself) and then check out in common scoring points with the right answered ones and naming the winner group at the end (my group was)

    The questions were:

    1 What is the population of the United Kingdom?
    (a) less than 50 million (b) between 50-60 million (c) over 60 million

    2 Who normally lives at the following places?
    (a) Buckingham Palace (b) 10 Downing Street

    3 London is the capital of England.What are the capitals of:
    (a) Scotland (b) Wales (c) Northern Ireland

    4 Match up the following places with what they are famous for:

    (1) Baker Street (2) St. Andrews (3) Ascot (4) Wimbledon (5) Loch Ness (6) Llangollen (7) Wembley Stadium (8) Cambridge

    (a) tennis (b) famous football ground (c) where Sherlock Holmes lived (d) old university town (e) horse racing (f) a see monster (g) golf (h) an international music festival

    5 Name the two main political parties in the UK

    6 London is the largest city in the UK. Which of the following is the second largest?
    (a) Manchester (b) Liverpool (c) Birmingham (d) Brighton

    7 In which town in England was William Shakespeare born?
    (a) London (b) Stratford-upon-Avon (c) Oxford

    8 At what age in Britain can you legally do the following things?
    (a) learn to drive (b) vote (c) leave school (d) buy/drink alcohol (e) get married (with parent’s permission)

    9 Do British policemen carry guns?

    10 Match up the following colloquial words with more usual ones.

    (Colloquial word) (1) a quid (2) a fag (3) a cuppa (4) a loo (5) a telly (6) plonk (7) a kip (8) a brolly

    (Usual word) (a) an umbrella (b) a television set (c) a (short) sleep (d) one pound (e) a toilet (f) a cigarette (g) a cup of tea (h) cheap wine

    11 Name two British newspapers

    12 Look at the map. Mark the places A-J. Choose from the following (not all are used):

    Rivers: River Avon, River Severn, River Thames
    Mountains: Ben Nevis, Snowdon
    Countries: England, Scotland, Wales, N. Ireland
    Islands: Anglesey, Isle of Man, Isle of Wight, Jersey
    Towns: Belfast, Birmingham, Brighton, Cambridge, Cardiff, Glasgow, Liverpool, London, Oxford, York

    NOTE: I cannot reproduce the UK map (!)

    The answers were:

    1 (c) [when the quiz was made in the 90s it was (b) but if you look at the wikipedia you can see the right answer],

    2 (a) The Queen (Elizabeth II) and the King (Philip Prince, Duke of Edinburgh) (b) The Prime Minister (Gordon Brown)

    3 (a) Edinburgh (b) Cardiff (c) Belfast

    4 (1-c) (2-g) (3-e) (4-a) (5-f) (6-h) (7-b) (8-d)

    5 (a) Conservative Party (b) Labour Party

    6 (c) Birmingham (I failed this!)

    7 (b) Stratford-upon-Avon

    8 (a) 17 (I failed this!) (b) 18 (c) 16 (d) 18 (e) 16

    9 The answer is No (I failed this!)

    10 (1-d) (2-f) (3-g) (4-e) (5-b) (6-h) (7-c) (8-a)

    11 (a) The Times (b) The Independent (They sayed more newspapers: The Guardian, The Sun, The Daily Record, …)

    12 (A-Ben Nevis) (B-Glasgow) (C-Belfast) (D-Wales) (E-Cardiff) (F-Birmingham) (G-River Thames) (H-London) (I-Oxford)

    Cultutal Quiz

    We also did some cultural quiz about UK. We were four groups and every group was given a piece of paper with 12 questions (from clockwise upper-intermediate resource pack, Part A In Britain …) We did answer the questions first among the members of the group. Then, we put the questions to the other groups. The group get one point if the answer were right. The group that put the question get a minus one point if given the answer, this was not right answered by them.

    This were our questions:

    1 What might you say when someone sneezes?
    Answer: (God) bless you!

    2 What could you take to someone’s house when you are invited for dinner?
    Answer: A bottle of wine, drinks, desert, chocolate, …

    3 What do you say before a meal?
    Answer: Actually, they say nothing in UK. It might be something in formal meals like: enjoy your meal!

    4 What might you say when you are introduced to someone?
    Answer: How do you do?

    5 What could you say when someone tells you they have failed their driving test?
    Answer: Oh dear, I’m sorry to hear that. Don’t worry. Next time you will do better.

    6 How might you refuse an invitation politely, e.g. ‘Would you like to go to the cinema tonight?’
    Answer: I’m sorry but I can’t. (I’m afraid I can’t) I’ve already got another appointment.

    7 You have cigarettes but no matches. What might you say to an stranger? (In order to lit your cigarette)
    Answer: Excuse me, Sir/Madam. Could you give me a light?

    8 You need a seat in a café. There is a table with three seats but only two people sitting there. What could you say to them?
    Answer: Excuse me, is this seat free? (May I …)

    9 Who would you give a tip to?
    Answer: the waiter/waitress

    10 Name three situations where British people would queue.
    Answer: At the bus stop. At the cinema ticket desk. At the bank clerk desk.

    11 Name three festivals celebrated in Britain.
    Answer: Guy Fawkes Night, Notting Hill Carnival and …. (?)

    12 Give two alternative ways of saying ‘goodbye’.
    (This one proved to be difficult …)
    Answer: Cheerio!, Tara!, See you!

    (The second way seems to be an alternative form of the colloquial Ta-ta meaning goodbye)

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