Monthly Archives: January 2011

YOU CAN GET IT IF YOU REALLY WANT (B1)

WE´VE BEEN TALKING ABOUT ABILITY TODAY.

LISTEN TO THIS SONG. WHAT DO YOU THINK THE MESSAGE IS?

A QUESTION OF ABILITY…?

HAVE YOU HEARD OF THE DOCUMENTARY CALLED “CAPACITADOS” WHICH IS SHOWN IN SPANISH CINEMAS AT THE MOMENT?

IF NOT, WATCH THE TRAILER.

HOW WOULD YOU TRANSLATE “CAPACITADOS” INTO ENGLISH?

WHAT´S THE DOCUMENTARY ABOUT?

WHAT ENGLISH VERBS OR EXPRESSIONS DO YOU KNOW TO TALK ABOUT “ABILITY”?

HAVE A LOOK AT UNIT 3C

http://valenciaenglish.netfirms.com/ability.htm

CREATE YOUR OWN “VOKI”

IF YOU WANT YOUR “VOKI” TO BE PUBLISHED IN MY BLOG, YOU JUST HAVE TO COPY THE CODE AND EMAIL IT TO ME

www.voki.com

LET´S SPECULATE….

READ THE COMIC STRIP AND SEE HOW THEY USE MODAL VERBS FOR SPECULATION

DO YOU KNOW ANY USEFUL LINK TO PRACTISE THIS GRAMMAR?

DANGER: DON´T OPEN MY E-MAILS!!

 

Alguien me ha suplantado y está utilizando mi cuenta de correo de forma fraudulenta. No abráis ningún correo, ya que me han dicho que piden dinero en mi nombre. Lo he denunciado a gmail pero borradme de todos vuestros contactos . La dirección de mi nueva cuenta de correo para  enviar  trabajos es     mcargobeeoival@gmail.com

                    Enviadme de nuevo la TASK 4  pues la cuenta de correo antigua está bloqueada, no puedo acceder a ella y he perdido mucha información y mucho trabajo que tenía almacenado en el “borrador”.

ALCOY´S THREE KINGS PARADE (B1)

Valencia to declare Alcoy Three Kings Parade as Intangible Cultural Heritage

By m.p. – Jan 4, 2011 – 3:56 PM
It has been held without interruption for the past 126 years

Alcoy’s Cabalgata de los Reyes Magos  is now 126 years old and is to be designated as a BIC Heritage of Intangible Cultural Interest by the regional government. It’s the highest protection which can be afforded to cultural traditions under Valencia’s cultural heritage law.

While more and more homes in Spain are receiving visits from Papa Noel at Christmas, the 6th of January is traditionally the time when children receive their gifts, brought to them on the Día de los Reyes, the Day of the Kings, by the Three Kings, the Reyes Magos. It’s preceded the evening before by a parade through the streets, the Cabalgata de los Reyes Magos which takes place across Spain as dusk falls on 5th January, when crowds of children eagerly follow the procession to collect the rain of sweets thrown down by Sus Majestades.

Alcoy proudly boasts the oldest parade in Spain, and possibly, the Town Hall says, even in the world. It’s been celebrated without interruption since 1885, but the Three Wise Men’s first entrance into the town is documented as having taken place almost two decades previously, in 1866. Declared a Fiesta of National Tourist Interest in 2001, the procession today involves more than one thousand locals, playing the part of pages, torch bearers, servants and soldiers from their majesties’ personal guard, the local music and dance groups …. and, of course, the most important roles of Melchor, Gaspar and Baltasar, riding slowly through the town on their camels.

Their arrival has been officially announced the day before by the Royal Envoy reading out the proclamation which heralds the news throughout the town. Children rush out when they hear the cry to post their letters to the Reyes Magos in the letterboxes carried on the backs of the donkeys which accompany the Envoy along the route.

The letters are read by Sus Majestades that night, and the following day, it is the royal pages, known as ‘els negres’ who have the job of handing over the presents to the children, collecting hundreds of packages which are carried along on the lorries which follow the procession. They run through the streets to deliver the gifts, and many are seen scaling long wooden ladders to climb over the balconies into the houses.

Alcoy’s Christmas celebrations also include a puppet performance which the Town Hall says may be, along with a similar show in Cádiz, the oldest surviving puppel show in Spain. Known as the ‘Betlem de Tirisiti’, it has been held as part of the Christmas celebrations for more than one hundred years, a theatre performance where the figures are controlled from below the stage by their puppeteers, who remain unseen to the audience. It’s become so popular over the years that the performance season now starts at the beginning of December to give the thousands who want to see the show the chance to see a performance.

Another event dating from the late 19th Century is ‘Les Pastoretes’ – ‘the little shepherds’, where children dressed up as shepherds parade with their flocks to the stable where they will pay homage to the new-born baby Jesus. It is usually held on the Sunday prior to 5th January, and has been taking place since 1889.

 

Read more: http://www.typicallyspanish.com/news/publish/article_28580.shtml#ixzz1A97irgQ5

FAQ ON NEW SMOKING LEGISLATION (B)

SMOKE WON´T GET IN YOUR EYES ANY MORE…..
By m.p. – Jan 3, 2011 – 7:26 PM
Fines of up to 600,000 Euro may be imposed for a very serious infraction
 

The new anti-smoking legislation now in effect in Spain, bringing in much tougher measures than those previously in place, saw more than 300 people reported in the first 24 hours for failing to comply with the law.

It came into effect on Sunday January 2, 2011 and, by 11am on Monday, the consumers’ group FACUA had received 311 complaints from across the country. Andalucía led the list with 86, with Málaga registering as the Spanish province with the most complaints – 61.

The 20 minutos website has drawn up a list of the most frequently asked questions for those who are still uncertain about what the ban includes:

WHERE IS SMOKING BANNED?
In spaces accessible to the general public or for communal use, whether they be privately or publically owned. This includes areas in bars, restaurants or airports where smoking was allowed up until now.

WHERE IS SMOKING PERMITTED?
In prisons, psychiatric centres for medium and long-term detention, pensioners’ homes and centres for the disabled, universities or adult education centres, but only in separate areas created either inside or outside the buildings. The reason why smoking is permitted in these cases is because those who attend these centres do not, as a general rule, have the opportunity to leave the facilities to smoke.

WHO CONTROLS SMOKING IN BARS AND RESTAURANTS?
The owners and employees of the establishments. They are also responsible for displaying posters clearing informing the public that smoking is not permitted on the premises.

WHO WILL BE FINED IF SOMEONE SMOKES WHERE IT IS NOT PERMITTED?
The person who smokes or, in the case of a juvenile, their parent or legal guardian.

WHO WILL GET FINED IF SOMEONE SMOKES IN A BAR?
In that case, the bar owner is also seen as responsible for allowing smoking on the premises, and will also face a fine. A fine may also be imposed if the bar owner has not informed customers that smoking is not permitted.

HOW MUCH ARE THE FINES?
It depends on the severity of the infraction. The fine for a minor infraction ranges from 30€ to 600 €, a serious infraction from 601€ to 10,000, and a very serious infraction from 10,001 € up to 600,000 €. The following points will be taken into account on deciding the fine: the general risk to health; the offender’s financial means; the social repercussion of the infraction; the benefit to the offender brought about by their sanctioned behaviour; and any previous record they may have of failing to comply with this law.

HOW MUCH WILL I BE FINED THE FIRST TIME I’M CAUGHT?
A first infringement of the law will be considered as a minor offence and a fine of 30€ will be imposed. However, reoffending will mean a higher fine as three minor offences will be considered as a serious offence.

WHO CAN THROW ME OUT OF A BAR IF I SMOKE?
The owner or any of the employees. The police may do so if a smoker refuses an order to leave the premises.

CAN YOU SMOKE AT THE DOOR TO A BAR?
Yes, as long as the door is physically outside the bar. It is not the case with hospitals however, where smoking is prohibited within 50 metres of the facilities.

CAN I REPORT SOMEONE WHO SMOKES IN AN AREA WHERE IT IS NOT PERMITTED?
Yes, any member of the public can report the offence, just as they can when other laws are infringed.

WHAT IS THE PROCEDURE FOR PLACING A COMPLAINT?
The same as for any other situation where a law is not being observed: call the police and specify where the infringement is taking place.

IS SMOKING PERMITTED IN PUBLIC PARKS?
Yes, smoking is allowed in public parks, but not in areas which are used as play areas by children. These areas are understood to be those which are equipped with facilities for children’s play, games or sport, even if they are in the open air. The law does not stipulate a minimum distance in these cases.

IF I OWN A BAR, CAN I SMOKE IN MY OFFICE?
No. Smoking in offices, which includes an office in a bar, was banned under the previous smoking law.

CAN I SMOKE WITH CHILDREN IN MY CAR?
Yes, the car is considered a private area. The new legislation does not control or ban smoking in a car even if children are travelling in the vehicle. Regional legislation is under preparation in the Basque Country however to ban smoking in cars if children are in the vehicle.

IS SMOKING PERMITTED IN ANY COMMUNAL SPACES?
Yes, the ban does not affect private smoking clubs. They must be constituted as a legal body, be non-profit making, and must not include amongst their activities the sale of any goods or supplies.

Despite the hefty fines which can be imposed,  notices were seen at the entrance to a Marbella restaurant this Monday informing customers that, as a private business, it was taking up its rights, and will not be applying the law on the premises.

The sign described the anti-smoking legislation, as a ‘smoke screen created by our government to cover up seven years of the massive destruction of Spain’, and apologised to anyone who felt affected by their decision.

Read more: http://www.typicallyspanish.com/news/publish/article_28567.shtml#ixzz1A3Hz4YVx

WOULD YOU REPORT SOMEONE SMOKING IN AN AREA WHERE IT´S NOT PERMITTED?

HOW MANY TOYS ARE ENOUGH? (B1)

 

Two or three toys are enough for Christmas, claim paediatricians
By: thinkSPAIN , Monday, January 3, 2011
CHILDREN should only be given a maximum of two or three toys as present from the Three Kings, recommend paediatricians.

They say kids are becoming more demanding and are some of the biggest consumers in Spain, with even the youngest insisting on certain brand names.

Children under a year old need someone to play with them when they receive a new toy, so one is enough, say children’s health experts.

And until they are at least two, they are only able to hold up to two objects with their hands, meaning one toy is also sufficient.

Paediatricians say kids should be given toys that are in some way educational, recommending building blocks for toddlers and toys that encourage ‘sociability’ and learning to speak for babies.

Battery-free toys should be chosen for the under-fives, so they can create their own sound and movement effects, and games that encourage creativity are recommended.

Games and toys that encourage team-playing and which help them to develop their manual and cognitive abilities are ideal for school-age children, claim child doctors.

They say kids should be taught that receiving presents is a novelty in itself and not to judge the giving and getting process on the number of presents the Three Kings bring them.

 
www.thinkspain.com    
     

DON´T YOU THINK THAT GETTING TOO MANY PRESENTS IS HARMFUL FOR CHILDREN?

FIRST DAY OF SMOKING BAN (B1)

Spain is famed for its smoke-filled bars, corner cafes and restaurants but a tough new anti-smoking law will rid the country of its dubious status as one of Europe’s easiest places to light up. The new law tightens the rules and bans smoking in any enclosed public space. Open areas like children’s playgrounds are also included in the ban.

As originally stated smoking will be banned in all closed public places from today but will be allowed on terraces and in sports stadiums and bullrings, despite the fact that pensioners and children are often present in such circumstances.

The revised details and date were announced by y the Health Minister, Trinidad Jiménez.

Smoking will be permitted in certain hotel rooms, and in specially designated areas in prisons and mental institutions, but will not be allowed at social events such as weddings, communions or baptisms.

Smoking will be permitted in smoking clubs as they can be considered as being a private place where workers and waiters have the option of choice.

Probably the strangest change to the law will be the fact that while it is illegal to smoke in many places, it is now going to be easier to buy them as the 2005 law imposing sale through vending machines in bars and cafes is to be lifted on the basis that t it is the use of cigarettes which is being legislated against, and not their sale.

Bar owners have complained that the legislation will lead to a drop in trade and loss of jobs.

WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THIS NEW SMOKING BAN? IS IT TOO TOUGH ON SMOKERS?

Smart Up Your English

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Helendipity Weblog

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Smart Up Your English

LEARN NEW WORDS, EXPRESSIONS, PHRASES...

Helendipity Weblog

learn English and share your experiences (SERENDIPITY= the accidental discovery of something pleasant and useful!)

Adrian Underhill's Pronunciation Site

Practical Discovery of English Pronunciation