CAE Essay (Mini-series Part 3) – Final tips

Take every essay assignment as a golden opportunity to start training for exam day

I have hardly seen any students rejoice at the idea of writing an essay task for homework but here is the key to achieving that level of confidence you are aiming at. If you are consistent in dedicating time to writing periodically before exam day, you will get there with, admittedly, considerable effort, but also with the guarantee that the essay will not be a problem for you. Continue reading “CAE Essay (Mini-series Part 3) – Final tips”

CAE Essay (Mini-series Part 2) – Writing Stage

This is the second part of a CAE Essay writing mini-series of blog posts. Click here for part 1

Let’s begin by taking a step into the future. To make sure your essay is up to the mark, you should be able to answer with a “yes” to the following questions once you have finished your writing:

  1. CONTENT:  Did I cover all the points?
  2. COMMUNICATIVE ACHIEVEMENT: Did I use the right register and develop the points effectively?
  3. ORGANISATION: Are my ideas organised into a suitable layout?
  4. LANGUAGE: Did I make use of advanced grammar structures and appropriate connectors?

Continue reading “CAE Essay (Mini-series Part 2) – Writing Stage”

CAE Essay (Mini-series Part 1) – Getting started

There is no choice here. If you take the CAE -C1 Advanced, the essay is mandatory. 

It is, therefore, crucial to be prepared and well-informed about what is expected of you. Daunting as it may seem at first, breaking it down into smaller tasks will help you get the hang of it. Let’s give some thought to what to do before you start writing. This simple action will guide you through and help you elaborate a successful piece of writing. 

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Favourite places in the UK – Cornwall and the South West Coast Path (SWCP)

Many moons ago, I had the first glimpse of this stunning region as an Inter-rail pass holder. The philosophy of Inter-rail travelling at the time, and probably still now, was to visit as many places as possible within the validity period. Far from ideal as I see things now, but back then it was thrilling to be moving fast across countries, probably missing amazing spots along the way but undoubtedly gaining a sense of adventure and broad horizons. During a short stay in Penzance (Cornwall), I discovered the South West coast path and was totally captivated by it, This sparked a  desire to return to Cornwall with more time and preparation to walk some stretches of the Cornish section of the SWCP long-distance trail.

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5 ideas to keep learning English outside the classroom this summer

Summer 2020, a most unusual one, but that is not to say that we should let it slip through our fingers. Every moment counts and more so than ever. We have come to realise that nothing is certain, and life as we knew it can change overnight.

So many sweeping changes, but I am going to speak about the one that my blog is devoted to English learning. Don’t let it stop!

Our plans to travel abroad to English speaking countries have been, for the most part, put on hold this year. I encourage you to try and find alternative engaging ways to keep your English in check. Here are five ideas to get you started. For more on this subject, you can read last summer’s post:  here Continue reading “5 ideas to keep learning English outside the classroom this summer”

Coronavirus Covid-19 – Easing restrictions

The aim of this blogpost is to look at language that is emerging as countries are relaxing their coronavirus restrictions and moving on towards a new phase. Replicating the format of a previous blogpost (dealing with the terminology the Coronavirus arrival brought with it, here), I will introduce language relevant to this stage, while providing context examples taken from newspapers.

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A mish-mash of some of my favourite reduplicatives

When I first heard the word mish-mash, it was love at first sight.

We were sitting by the fire in the rustic living room of an old National Trust farmhouse located in a remote valley of the Peak District. A perfect end to a day of volunteering work in the morning, and an afternoon in the hills.

I was having a drink and chatting about languages with the international team. One  of them (a fellow volunteer at the time and now a close friend) used the word mish-mash. It was clear from the context that she meant something like a jumble, a mixture of things. A pot-pourri. I asked her to repeat the word just to hear the sound of it  in her beautiful British accent. Mish-mash! Love it. Continue reading “A mish-mash of some of my favourite reduplicatives”

Coronavirus COVID-19 Vocabulary List

In this global Coronavirus COVID-19 health emergency, Vitoria has sadly become a hotspot (site with multiple cases of infection) in Spain. In an attempt to prevent the spread of disease, the local authorities are implementing containment measures such as the closure of schools since last Tuesday.

At present, the coronavirus crisis is on everybody’s lips so I have compiled a vocabulary list to enable students to hold a conversation in English about this major issue. This image shows the vocabulary list and down below, each of these expressions is illustrated in the context of current news. 

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Self-study for speaking tests: 4 steps that will raise your game

Speaking exams are tough but with the right preparation and mindset you can step into the examination hall with a good dose of self-confidence in your abilities and a feeling of being in control of the situation rather than overwhelmed by it.

Keep reading for some ideas to help you build confidence and take away some of the anxiety so that you can perform better on exam day.

 

Continue reading “Self-study for speaking tests: 4 steps that will raise your game”