Spring has sprung

9 de marzo de 2020 at 19:15

 ‘Spring has sprung’ is a popular expression. We say it when the winter is over and suddenly plants start to grow with new life.  Many people in Barcelona grow plants in window boxes and spring is the time to start planting flowers. If you want to ‘beautify” your living space, why not plant a window box?

What’s with the weather?

17 de febrero de 2020 at 22:18

A «barometer» tells us the weather. Source @ Wikimedia commons

The weather can be very unpredictable.  People love talking about the weather because it is something that affects everyone and this means that we have a lot of special vocabulary to describe rain, clouds and wind. For example, if we say “unsettled weather” this means that it might rain, but it might not! Learn more weather words here and talk about the weather like a weather professional!

Beach life!

16 de julio de 2019 at 15:18

A popular city beach in Barcelona. Source @ Wikimedia commons

“Sunshine is the best medicine” so the saying goes. You can produce Vitamin D by being in the sun and maybe this is one of the reasons that going to the beach in the summer is one of the most popular things to do on holiday. For this reason, in this post we look at beach vocabulary.

Anyone for tennis?

27 de junio de 2019 at 17:05

Rafael Nadal (ESP) Source @ Wikimedia commons

Tennis is one of the most popular sports today and Wimbledon is one of the most famous tennis tournaments. The first Wimbledon was in 1877 and it is usually at the beginning of July. It is a ‘grass court’ competition. Tennis can be played on a grass court, a clay court or a hard court. Tennis has a lot of special vocabulary so in this post we are looking at the world of tennis in English! 


Summer fireworks

14 de junio de 2019 at 10:32

 

Barcelona fireworks. Source @ Wikimedia

Summer solstice is on its way and in Catalonia and Valencia, as well as in other parts of the world, celebrations take place to commemorate the shortest night of the year, or Saint John’s Eve. This festival is always on the night of the 23rdJune and it is celebrated with food and drink. It is also celebrated with fireworks and bonfires and because of this it is also called the ‘Night of Fire’. In honour of this celebration this blog post takes a look at fireworks.

 


Exam time!

27 de mayo de 2019 at 8:50

Source @ Wikimedia commons

Exams. Love them or hate them, you just can’t hide from them. Exams are a fact of life and everybody at some point will have to take an exam. In the academic world, May and June are full of exams. Exam stress can be real, so in this post we look at ways to prepare for this big event.

 

What’s in a name?

22 de mayo de 2019 at 11:26

Not Archie, but a baby boy called Oliver. Source @ wikimedia commons

If you have been reading the news you will know that Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan have just had a baby boy. The UK is very happy about this. There has also been some surprise that his name Archie is not a very ‘royal’ name. Male royal names are usually Charles, Albert or George. But what’s in a name? Quite a lot actually, as we will find out

Family Trees

26 de abril de 2019 at 14:13

The family tree of Queen Victoria of England. Source @ Wikimedia commons

A very popular activity on the C1 English language course is a spoken activity where students describe a member of their family from the past. Everybody loves talking about family and you don’t need to be a member of the Royal Family to have interesting ancestors.  Here we look at genealogy (the study of family history) and family vocabulary.

 

Music documentaries

11 de octubre de 2018 at 15:54

Amy Winehouse; Source@ Wikimedia commons

October is great month in Barcelona if you are a music fan. It’s the month of the In-Edit music documentary festival. In-Edit began in 2003 and it started life as a small niche festival attracting just over a 1000 people.  It has now grown internationally with In-Edit festivals in Berlin, Buenos Aires, São Paulo and Puebla in Mexico. The interest in music documentaries has grown so much that recently some have won Oscars. If you are a music fan, watching documentaries in their original version is a great way to help your English.  Read on for documentary suggestions…

Back to school!

21 de septiembre de 2018 at 10:40

Source@wikimedia commons

“Back to school” time is such a famous meme that it has even inspired a fashion line. Back to school is the time when students gather new material, books, stationery and if necessary, buy new clothing and uniforms. But what does back to school mean for you studying English at the UOC?