WEEK 6

The environment.

What is fracking?

Drilling companies suggest trillions of cubic feet of shale gas may be recoverable from underneath parts of the UK through a process known as “fracking”.

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is a technique designed to recover gas and oil from shale rock. But how does it work and why is it controversial?

Read on…

Is nuclear the future?

When it comes to nuclear power, the only thing we have to fear is fear itself. Our best public health data shows that nuclear has already saved 1.8 million lives that would have been lost if we burned fossil fuels instead.

How many could have been saved if we hadn’t been spooked by the China Syndrome and the anti-nuclear groups?

This is truly inspiring… if the rich world can decarbonize even faster with nuclear power, we can provide power to the developing world in whatever form is cheapest.

 

WEEK 5

The present and future of work and jobs.

The Future of Jobs

What jobs will still be around in 20 years? Read this to prepare your future

Jobs won’t entirely disappear; many will simply be redefined. But people will likely lack new skillsets required for new roles and be out of work anyway…

Continue reading…

The Future of Jobs Pt.2

When the Industrial Revolution replaced many agricultural jobs with machines, it also created new jobs in factories. Today, algorithms are replacing many white-collar jobs. But will there be new jobs created? What will these new jobs be? Will there be enough new jobs for the ever increasing number of young aspiring graduates?

Unemployment

I WAS recently talking to a friend at a party whose husband — in his 60s — has been unemployed for more than two years. While there are many challenges, she said, one of the hardest things is trying to balance hope with reality…

Continue reading…

Grammar

Passive reporting structures

Explanations & exercises

WEEK 4

So this week we’ve been looking at travel. Here are some interesting articles on different types of tourism.

The Camino

SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA, Spain — There are the pilgrims who hobble along with a staff, painstakingly making their way through a monthlong journey of contemplation. Then there are the others, looking…

Lifting the Soul, and the Spanish Economy, Too

Ayahuasca

Every year, thousands of tourists head to the Peruvian Amazon to take the plant medicine ayahuasca. But what does the powerful drink actually do, and what do local shamans think of the rise in its popularity?

Peru’s ayahuasca industry booms as westerners search for alternative healing

Slum Tourism

The Pros and Cons of Slum Tourism: Crass Voyeurism or Enlightened Travel?

Interesting video here:

https://www.ted.com/talks/kitra_cahana_stories_of_the_homeless_and_hidden 

Grammar

https://englishelxna2.wordpress.com/2012/11/06/participle-clauses/

WEEk 3

This week’s topics are technology and social media. There are some articles and a documentary that can help you prepare you monologue and dialogue.

Social Media

The Pros

Social media can power a revolution, spread ideas and make us feel connected. Half the world’s population is now online. We are truly living in the Information Age.

Continue reading…

The Cons

We are what we spend our time doing. The average adult now spends over twenty hours online each week. Nearly a third of that time is spent on social media platforms, with Facebook taking up fifty minutes of each day. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, that’s more time than we spend reading, exercising, or socialising most days.

Continue reading…

The Kids

Thanks to social media, today’s teens are able to directly interact with their culture — artists, celebrities, movies, brands, and even one another — in ways never before possible. But is that real empowerment? Or do marketers still hold the upper hand?

 

Is the art of conversation dead?

I first noticed it in a restaurant. The place was strangely quiet, and at one table a group seemed deep in prayer. Their heads were bowed, their eyes hooded and their hands in their laps. I then realised that every one, young and old, was gazing at a handheld phone.

Continue reading…

Grammar 

Conditionals – alternatives to ‘if’.

 

 

 

WEEK 2

Ok, so this week we’ve been looking at House, Home & Surroundings. Here are some more articles to read, a video to watch and some grammar exercises on cleft sentences for you to do.

 

The Future of Urban Spaces

What is the future of urban development? Read this article from The Guardian.

Resilient Cities

How do our urban surroundings affect us psychologically? Have a look at this detailed report by the BBC on neuro-architecture

 

The House of The Future

 

 

Grammar

Exercises on cleft sentences: click here.

 

WEEK 1

Hi everyone,

Every week, we’ll be posting some  material for you to supplement the work you’re doing in class. The topic this week is Personal Identity, Family, Gender, etc…

Here are some links to articles, videos and exercises on this weeks topic. The words in orange are links.

BBC Gender Pay Gap

 

The BBC was engulfed in a huge gender pay gap storm today after it emerged that the top-paid male star raked in more than four times the salary of the highest-earning woman.

 

BBC women ‘furious but not surprised’ by gender pay gap. Female workers speak of being lied to by the corporation over salary disparities and threatened when they challenge them.

 

 

What is gender discrimination? Watch the video and find out

 

 

 

Do boys and girls benefit from studying together?

Some say yes and some say no. Read here

Grammar – Adding emphasis with Negative Adverbials

Examples and exercises – click here