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Welcome to British Council LearnEnglish Activities Pronunciation Tips Sounds and phonemic chart Digital access to English for learners everywhere Apps for Learning The British Council creates international opportunities for the people of the UK and other countries and builds trust between them worldwide. We call this work cultural relations. We are on the ground in six continents and over 100 countries bringing international opportunity to life, every day. Each year we work with millions of people, connecting them with the United Kingdom, sharing our cultures and the UK's most attractive assets: English, the Arts, Education and our ways of living and organising society. We have over 75 years' experience of doing this.
, wto every learner or teacher who wants them around the world. We work with governments to transform whole education systems to increase opportunity and employability through English. We also deliver English teaching and train teachers by radio, web and broadcast in developing and post conflict countries.
The British Council's high profile wducation & Society helps hundreds of millions of people worldwide to learn about and experience creativity and excellence from the UK. Millions of talented people of all ages – but particularly younger people – engage face-to-face and online veloping new skills, experiencing life and study in the UK and earning UK qualifications. British Council HCMC: (08) 3823 2862
Welcome to the British Council!With over 75 years' experience, and with 80 teaching centres in 49 countries around the world, the British Council is committed to providing the best possible teaching and learning environment, and to building and maintaining mutual respect between cultures. Whether you are studying for fun, for work, or for an exam, our courses, teachers and materials are here to help you make real progress in the most effective and enjoyable way. In this booklet, you will find a series of 12 exciting topics from the British government's GREAT campaign – Shopping in the UK, British Music, British Literature, Innovations in the UK, Famous Entrepreneurs, Sport in the UK, History of the English Language, Famous Universities in the UK, How green is the UK? , British Heritage, British Countryside and Creativity. Each article has a series of 7 activities where you can practice:• your reading comprehension• build your vocabulary • test your grammar knowledge. In section 2, you will find a reference section with lots of tips on learning English – improve your Speaking, Listening, Reading, Writing and Pronunciation. There is also a complete reference section on the phonemic chart as well as a comprehensive list of free apps which you can download for free so you can continue your learning journey anytime, anywhere. Hope you enjoy the booklet and good luck with your English Journey. Activity 1
Activity 2
Match the word with a definition.
You are going to read a text about the British countryside. Try and guess which of the following topics will be mentioned? a. animals and plants in their natural stateb. large area of land which is visually special c. outside a building, in the open air Now read the text and find out if you were correct.
d. steep, high rock facee. very beautifulf. the part of the land that's next to the sea Not just London
Many visitors to the UK go straight to London and Wales also has its fair share of spectacular landscape never venture outside the capital – which is a pity, for – Snowdonia was one of the first national parks to be there is a huge variety of landscape only a few hours created, in 1951. You will find the road signs in two away, in any one of Britain's largest areas of protected languages and hear Welsh spoken in the local shops. If countryside, its national parks.
mountain climbing is not your thing, try visiting a castle built by a 13th-century prince, or check out the nearby The biggest is the Cairngorms in northern Scotland, with some of the country's highest mountains and The English coast
the best place for skiing. Pony-trekking, climbing and The coastline of England is just as amazing. On some fishing are also popular, along with Scotland's national Dorset beaches you can still find fossils dating back game, golf. Wildlife enthusiasts are well rewarded to the Jurassic era – the first marine dinosaur remains – this is the home of the red deer, red squirrel and were found in the cliffs here in the early 19th century.
golden eagle.
The Giant's Causeway
The Lake District
For the strangest coastal scenery of all, cross the Irish Over the border in England is the Lake District, Sea to the Giant's Causeway, a set of basalt columns originally made famous by local Romantic poet formed by volcanic activity sixty million years ago – or, William Wordsworth two hundred years ago. People as legend has it, built by warrior giant Finn McCool have been travelling here en masse since 1847 when to walk from Northern Ireland to fight his enemy in a railway was built to its biggest lake, Windermere. Scotland. The stone ‘steps' are not complete because Children's writers have found inspiration here too, the giant fell asleep – something you'll probably want and the mountains make for excellent walking, with to do yourself at the end of an invigorating day in the breathtaking views.
great British outdoors.
Activity 3
2. The Lake District . (make) famous by the poet Are the following true or false? William Wordsworth.
1. It is possible to ski in Britain.
3. A railway . (build) to Lake Windermere in 2. Some children's books were inspired by the British 4. In Wales the road signs . (write) in two 3. The national parks in Britain are hundreds of languages, Welsh and English.
5. In Dorset, dinosaur remains . (discover) in the 4. People still discover fossils on some beaches.
19th century.
5. The Giant's Causeway was created by recent Activity 5: Discussion topics
Activity 4
How many national parks/protected areas are there in your country? Complete the gap with a passive form of the verb in brackets.
Which national parks in your country are most interesting? Why? 1. National parks are areas of land which . (protect) by law.

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10 largest UK national parks
When did it
Highest point
Visitors per
Ben Macdui – 1,309 Scafell Pike – 978 Snowdon – 1,085 Loch Lomond and the Trossachs Ben More – 1,174 Whernside – 736 Blackdown – 280 Kinder Scout – 636 Urra Moor – 454 The Cheviot - 815 Source: UK Association of National Park Authorities ( Data extracted in 2012. Activity 6
Activity 7
Are the following true or false? Complete the gap with the correct comparative or superlative form of the adjective in brackets.
1. The Lake District National Park is as old as 1. The Yorkshire Dales National Park is . than the Brecon Beacons. (large) 2. The Cairngorms and Loch Lomond receive over eight million visitors a year.
2. Snowdon is . than Scafell Pike. (high) 3. The highest point in Snowdonia is Kinder Scout.
3. The Cairngorms is . national park in 4. The Cairngorms is larger than the combined area of Snowdonia and the Lake District.
4. The Lake District is . than any other national park. (popular) 5. The South Downs is one of the oldest national parks 5. The North York Moors is one of . national parks in Britain.(old) The Cairngorms National Park in Scotland Visiting a national park by bicycle The south coast of England Useful links
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Activity 1
Activity 2
Match the word with a definition.
You are going to read a text about creativity. See if you can match a word on the left with one on the right, and then decide which one is different.
b. not in your country c. someone who does something new d. taught how to do something e. causing argument and disagreement Now read the text and find out if you were correct.
Britain seems to have plenty of creativity in the Behind the camera
performing and visual arts. Perhaps this is because of There are several well-known British directors and a large population in such a small geographical area. producers. Alfred Hitchcock created a whole genre, Certainly British people have been going to see films while David Puttnam has made movies about the and plays for many generations.
Olympic Games (Chariots of Fire) and genocide in Cambodia (The Killing Fields). The two major studios in the UK are Shepperton, near London, where films Theatres in Britain date back to the 16th century and such as Gandhi and Alien were shot, and Pinewood, the the country's most famous writer and actor, William home of James Bond.
Shakespeare. Performers often gain experience in regional theatres and London has a strong tradition of showing plays and musicals in the ‘West End'. These The visual arts also display Britain's creative spirit, attract audiences in their millions from home and from Romantic Age painters like Turner and Constable abroad. One theatre has put on the same play for 60 to groups such as the Pre-Raphaelites. The works of today's artists – Damien Hirst or Tracey Emin – are often shocking and controversial and sell for high Film stars
prices. In contrast, many major art galleries are free The early days of film-making were influenced by for everyone, and in city streets graffiti is recently creative talents like Charlie Chaplin. Born in London's becoming both an art form and a tourist attraction.
poor East End, he went from being a child entertainer to a pioneer of silent movies in Hollywood. British actors after him were classically trained, but soon Today's cheap software means that creativity is appeared on cinema screens too – Laurence Olivier, present in much computer games design. The success Richard Burton and Alec Guinness became world- of Tomb Raider shows how developers have become famous, along with Audrey Hepburn and Julie Andrews. the latest examples of Britain's creative genius.
The next generation, actors like Sean Connery, Anthony Hopkins, Judy Dench and Maggie Smith, are still familiar names today.
Activity 3
Activity 4
Match the answers from the box to the questions.
Find the spelling or punctuation mistake in the following sentences and correct it.
a. Shepperton Studios b. The West End c. Tracey Emin 1. Alec Guinness apeared on the stage and in films.
d. Pinewood Studios 2. Charlie Chaplin was one of film's early talent's.
3. The Pre-Raphaelites were a group of panters.
1. Where can you find a sixty-year-old play? 4. Theatres in britain date back to the 16th century.
2. Where was Charlie Chaplin born? 5. Chariots of fire was a popular film.
3. Where was James Bond made?4. Where was Alien filmed?5. Who is a modern painter? Activity 5: Discussion topic
Do you have a favourite classic film? Why do you like it?
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British Film Institute Top 5 British films*
Plot summary
Writer Holly Martins travels to Vienna, then has to investigate the mysterious death of an old friend, When she meets a stranger in a railway station, a woman Screenplay by Noël is tempted to cheat on her An epic film about a controversial British military Steven Spielberg's figure and his personal conflicts during wartime.
A man in London tries to help a spy. But the agent is Near the beginning of killed and he is accused. He the film you can see must go on the run to save Hitchcock walking himself and stop a spy ring trying to steal top secret information.
First of two films An orphan becomes a that Lean directed gentleman with the help of which were based on someone he doesn't know.
Dickens' novels; the other was Oliver Twist. Source:* In 1999 the British Film Institute asked 1,000 film and TV people to produce the BFI 100 list of the greatest British films of the 20th century. They had to choose 100 films that were 'culturally British'. Some of the films were totally or partly produced by non-UK companies, or made with filmmakers born outside the UK, but they still had an important British connection. Activity 6
Activity 7
Decide if the following are true or false.
Match the film words with a definition below.
1. The Third Man is about a writer who murders a friend 2. Brief Encounter is a love story that takes place on a cruise ship.
a. the story of the filmb. the person who is in control of filming 3. Lawrence of Arabia is one film director's favourite c. the place where the action of the film happens d. the script and instructions for a film 4. The director of the film appears in The 39 Steps.
e. people who play parts in a film 5. David Lean took the story of Great Expectations from a work of literature.
Useful links
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Activity 1
Activity 2
Match the word or phrase with a definition.
You are going to read a text that contains the following information. Can you guess which numbers complete 2. air-traffic controllers 3. flexible the sentences, before you read? a. (in a language) change according to number or 1. At least . people have English as their b. kept for future use second language.
c. people who direct planes from the ground 2. per cent of the world population may speak English by the middle of this century.
e. that can adapt or change easily 3. There are about . commonly used words in f. the way a noun is categorised as masculine or 4. In . ways English grammar is simpler than other languages.
5. There are . new English words every year.
Now read the text and find out if you were correct.
Once people dreamed of a language that everybody in English is everywhere
the world could understand. Now, for the first time in Some other languages may have more speakers, like human history, perhaps there is one – English. It is the Spanish or Mandarin. But English is used in many official language in more than 50 countries and 250– different areas. It is the language of transport: most 300 million speak it as a second language. Some say airline pilots and air-traffic controllers use it. At sea a that half the world will be speaking it in the year 2050.
simple form of English is the international language of Difficult to master?
English is not the easiest language to learn – most English for progress
of its common verbs are irregular and it has a large It is also the first language of science, technology vocabulary – at least 200,000 words are in common and education – an estimated 80 per cent of the use. Its pronunciation and written form are also very information stored on the Internet is in English and 90 per cent of schoolchildren in European countries study it as their first foreign language.
But some things make it easy – nouns don't have New words
gender and verbs are less complicated than other Around 25,000 new words and expressions enter the languages. There is only one form to speak to English language every year. Do you know what a someone directly – ‘you'. Adjectives don't agree with helicopter parent is? – a mother or father too involved nouns, and many nouns are often also verbs.
in the life of their child. And what about a boomerang child? – a young adult who returns to live with their Making it their own
parents for financial reasons.
English is very flexible – many different varieties have developed over the centuries in different parts of the The future of English world, such as the USA, Australia or Ireland. There are What is the future of English as a global language? also different versions of English in Africa, Asia and the Will another language ever replace it? Many think not – it is already too popular.
Activity 3
Activity 4
Which of the following sentences are true, according to Use the correct form of the word in brackets to complete the sentence.
1. Half the world speaks English.
1. I can speak English quite well, but I have problems 2. English has a vocabulary of 200,000 words.
with . (pronounce) 3. You can't always guess the pronunciation of a word 2. English words are often pronounced differently from when you read it.
how they are . (write) 4. Irish English is the same as British English.
3. I never knew there were so many . of 5. Spanish has more speakers than English does.
6. A ship's captain has to speak some English.
4. English is the language of international . 7. Ninety per cent of children around the world study English at school.
5. Will there ever be another . language? 8. English vocabulary increases every year.

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Unusual English words, phrases and facts
Plot summary
An American study showed this to be the word that is most commonly spelled wrongly. Many people spell it ‘recieve'.
This is the only commonly used word in English in which ‘f' is pronounced like a ‘v'.
This is the only common word in English ending in the letters ‘-mt'.
This expression, meaning ‘Oh! My God!' was not invented recently. In1917 Admiral John Arbuthnot Fisher used it when writing to Winston Churchill.
‘Clothes', ‘pants', ‘scissors', None of these words has a singular form. ‘shorts' and ‘trousers' This word, which means 'regular sounds or movements', has seven letters but does not contain any of the five vowels (a, e, i, o, u).
This word, which means ‘not serious about a serious subject', contains all five vowels, each used only one time, and in the same order as they appear in the alphabet.
This is an example of a true anagram. An anagram is a word or phrase made by 'Waitress' = 'A stew, sir?' using the letters of another word or phrase in a different order. A true anagram is one that explains or describes the word that it is made from. This is an example of a pangram, a sentence that uses every letter of the ‘The quick brown fox alphabet at least once. This pangram contains 35 letters and is often used for jumps over the lazy dog.' practice by people who are learning to type. ‘A man, a plan, a canal – This is an example of a palindrome, a word or group of words that is the same if you read it forwards from the start to the end, or backwards from the end to the start.
Source: A Collection of Word Oddities and Trivia Activity 5: Discussion topic
4. There are no words in English that end in ‘mt'.
What is the best way to learn another language? 5. Some words in English can contain all five vowels.
Activity 7
Activity 6
Match the example with the definition.
Are the statements true or false? 1. Amazingly few discotheques provide jukeboxes.
1. OMG (meaning ‘Oh my God') was invented by teenagers to use in text messages.
3. Madam I'm Adam.
2. There are some words in English that have no vowels.
3. Some words in English are only plural.
5. The eyes – they see Some of the 150 million items in The British Library Learning more about English Foreign students in the UK Useful links
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Activity 1
Activity 2
Match the word or phrase with a definition.
You are going to read a text about entrepreneurs. Match a beginning and an ending to find out what 3. on his own terms entrepreneurs do.
a. get involved immediately b. having a special abilityc. have confidence in d. in the way he wants e. satisfy a want or demandf. plans of action e. something they love Now read the text and find out if you were correct.
Bad business
The magic ingredients
In Britain's current economic climate, many people If you want to start a business, you also need a good don't trust big financial institutions. Surprisingly, idea for a product or service, something that will meet however, one of the country's most admired figures is a need. You should see things differently and believe an entrepreneur. in an idea when others don't. But it is also important to do something you love. Sir Richard Branson is the popular face of business. You win some, you lose some
His personal image is sometimes more like a rock star You must be prepared to lose money as well as make than an executive. He likes to break the rules and do it. Richard Branson's clothing, cosmetics, and car things on his own terms. companies were less successful. So you need plenty of self-belief and expect to make mistakes. As one His brilliant career
young social networking entrepreneur says: ‘I find it Many people are familiar with his story – he started a best to dive right in and learn the hard way.' student magazine, then a record shop. He turned this into an innovative record company, and eventually an You can't do it alone
airline. He has also created a radio station, a phone One more important personal characteristic is the network and a train service. One of his latest schemes ability to manage – by building teams and inspiring is space tourism.
people. It is best to have talented people around you, to trust others and give them responsibility. Individual attributes
Branson seems to possess many of the personal characteristics of successful entrepreneurs – he likes Today, younger people are not content with a safe job taking risks and is good at exploiting opportunities, in a traditional profession. They are setting up their own companies – in 2010 there was a 15 per cent rise in 16–24-year-old entrepreneurs compared to two years before. It seems Britain still has entrepreneurial spirit.
Activity 3
3. If you want to start a business you must .
Choose the best answer according to the text.
a. make people believe your idea.
b. love what you do.
1. Which of these sentences is true about Richard c. be careful not to make mistakes.
d. do all of these things a. He is popular with British people.
b. He is an executive. 4. The people in your business should .
c. He likes to do things his way.
b. be talented.
d. All of these sentences are true.
c. be traditional. d. be all of these things.
2. Which things has Richard Branson been involved in? 5. A good manager should .
a. the music industry a. encourage teamwork. b. the communications industry b. choose talented people.
c. the transport industry c. give people responsibility.
d. He has been involved with all of these things.
d. do all of these things.
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5 great British entrepreneurs
Famous for
His image appears ‘I sell here, Sir, what all alongside James Watt the world desires to on the Bank of England ‘If you do things well, She worked for the do them better. Be United Nations.
daring, be first, be different, be just.' ‘Once you decide to Tottenham Hotspur He collects classic work for yourself, you football club, The never go back to work Bentley cars.
for somebody else.' ‘You don't learn to walk Virgin Records' first by following rules. You album was Tubular learn by doing, and by Bells, by Mike Oldfield.
(David and Victoria He has had a role in ‘You've got to get in more than 100 No. 1 hit there while it's hot and television producer songs in the UK.
get out before it's cold.' Source: Wikipedia Activity 4
Activity 6
Fill in the gap with a suitable word or phrase from the table.
Which two entrepreneurs .
1. are involved in television? a. Matthew Boulton 2. have been involved in the 3. left school at 15? d. Richard Bransone. Simon Fuller 1. Are you . how to use this new software? 4. were born in the 1940s? 2. We want the company to . a success story.
5. had a connection to teaching? 3. We . your product so we are going to invest in it.
Activity 7
4. Are you . work hard to advance your Choose the right preposition.
1. It's better to be your own boss than work (at/for/on) 5. They were not . the service so they someone else.
2. British children can leave school (at/on/with) the age 6. It is not easy to . your own business.
3. There's a picture of Charles Darwin (in/at/on) the British £10 note.
4. You can't learn to ride a bicycle (with/by/for) reading Activity 5: Discussion topic
about it - you have to do it.
How do people learn about starting a business in your 5. If your business isn't going well then get (out/off/up) before it's too late.
6. He was sent to prison because of his role (on/in/at) the bank robbery.
Useful link
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Activity 1
Activity 2
Match the word or phrase with a definition.
You are going to read a text about being green. Can you guess which of the following topics will be 2. renewable energies 3. resources 4. sustainable 5. waste a. valuable possessions of a country – land, minerals, etc.
b. natural power sources that cannot run outc. group of turbines producing electricity Now read the text and find out if you were correct.
d. anything unwanted or uselesse. collect and use againf. maintained without problems The year 2012 is the 20th anniversary of the Rio What about sustainable transport? There is a national Summit. World leaders discussed many subjects: how cycle network in the UK – on many routes only to develop modern economies without finishing the bicycles are allowed. In London you can hire a bike in world's resources; how to save tropical forests and the street. Car drivers have to pay to enter the centre the diversity of life on Earth; and what to do about of the capital on weekdays. Now 30 per cent fewer changes in climate. So what has happened in Britain people use cars and take public transport instead.
since 1992? How ‘green' is the UK today? Green goods and services
British homes now recycle about 40 per cent of their Britain now makes components for renewable waste, including paper, glass and aluminium. Many energies such as wave power. The geography of the people do not separate the items, however. Another country makes it good for wind power. The second 12 per cent of UK waste is burnt at special facilities to biggest wind farm in Europe is in Scotland, and the world's largest offshore facility will soon supply electricity to 750,000 homes. Wind power provided Green and pleasant land?
4.7 per cent of Britain's total energy needs in 2011.
In 2011, people spent £1.67 billion on organic food, and over four per cent of UK farmland is now organic.
A recent report shows that there is double the amount The UK is also experimenting with green buildings. of forest in the UK than a hundred years ago – this is One project is to make a house only out of waste ten per cent of the total land area. One charity wants materials. In Wales, two eco-houses use special to plant 20 million more trees in the next 50 years.
heating to make fuel bills cheaper in winter. Many older buildings now use less energy after improving Britain may not be green yet, but it's going in the their insulation.
right direction.
Activity 3
5. Which sentence is not true? a. One tenth of Britain is covered in trees. Select the best answer to each question, according to b. One tenth of British farmland is organic. c. One fifth of Britain was covered in trees a 1. What did the Rio Summit discuss? century ago.
a. how to finish the world's resources b. how to save the diversity of life on Earth c. how to change the climate Activity 4
2. Which sentence is true about renewable energies? There are lots of compound nouns in the text. Match a a. The biggest European wind farm is in Scotland.
beginning and an ending.
b. The largest offshore wind farm is sending electricity to 75,000 homes.
c. Just under five per cent of Britain's energy is from wind power.
c. materials d. network e. power 3. What is it more expensive to do in central London Activity 5: Discussion topic
a. drive b. cycle c. use public transport How much household rubbish is recycled in your 4. What does the average home do with more than a third of its rubbish? a. burn it b. separate it c. recycle it British Council HCMC: (08) 3823 2862
8 facts about the green economy in the UK
1. The green economy was worth £122 billion (bn) in 2011, 9.3 per cent of the economy.
2. The green goods and services sector employed 939,600 people in 2010–11, many more than the car industry with 518,400 employees.
3. Green infrastructure projects for 2012–13 are worth £23bn, non-green projects only £3.1bn.
4. The UK exported green goods and services to 52 countries in 2010–11, totalling £11.8bn.
5. Exports to the UK's largest six trade partners reached £2.4bn, while imports only totalled £1.4bn.
6. Green exports to China were £794 million, while green imports totalled only £464m.
7. Scotland continues to lead the UK in renewable energy, investing £325.54 per person, compared to just £85.38 in England.
8. Scots also get 22 per cent of their electricity from renewable sources. The English get just five per cent.
Activity 6
Activity 7
Match a beginning and an ending to make a true Complete the sentences with the correct preposition.
1. There were over 900,000 people employed in green 1. Almost one tenth of the UK economy goods and services . 2010–11.
2. Green infrastructure projects are 2. The UK exported green goods and services . 3. Green goods and services 52 countries.
4. Britain exported many more 3. Scotland invests much more in renewable energy per 5. Over one fifth of Scotland's electricity person compared . England.
a. are worth over £10 billion.
b. green goods to China than it imported.
4. Scotland gets a fifth of its electricity . c. is from renewable energy.
renewable sources.
d. is green.
5. Half a million people are employed . car e. seven times the value of non-green ones.
companies in the UK.
The 2012 Olympic Stadium, built on the site of an old factory Capturing the energy of the sun with solar panels Useful links
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Activity 2
Match the word with a definition.
You are going to read a text about Britain's heritage. Can you guess the significance of these names? a. bridge that can be raisedb. pictures made from small pieces of stone a. a famous sheep c. how something was made or began b. the first name of a famous naturalist d. a show of objects or art for the public to see c. the first name of one of King Henry VIII's wives d. someone who has a ‘seat' named after him f. a volcano that will no longer erupt e. the name of a big clockf. a saint who has a cathedral named after himNow read the text and find out if you were correct.
What people come to see
enter across the drawbridge. There are ‘murder holes' Thirty million people come to the UK every year to see which soldiers used to drop hot oil on the enemy, and Britain's heritage – palaces, cathedrals, castles and under the castle are dungeons for prisoners.
museums. So what do they visit? Bird's eye view
When the Romans invaded, they built roads, towns London is usually the first destination. You can get a great and walls. In Bath you can still see the original Roman view from a giant wheel, the London Eye. Across the bathing complex, with its heating system and mosaics. river you will see the Houses of Parliament and famous In York, the Jorvik museum is dedicated to the Vikings, clock tower, Big Ben. Looking east you can't miss St who came from Scandinavia and captured the city Paul's Cathedral. It was built after the original church was in the 9th century. The Minster and medieval streets destroyed by the Great Fire of London in 1666. make it a popular destination. The Tower and museums
A boat trip on the Thames takes you to the Tower of Across the border in Edinburgh is the Museum of London. Several famous people were imprisoned here Scotland. It contains some exquisite 12th century before their execution – including one of King Henry chess pieces and the remains of Dolly the Sheep, the VIII's wives, Anne Boleyn. The Natural History Museum world's first cloned animal. Thousands of people come has dinosaur skeletons, a model of a blue whale and here in August for the International Festival. If you a statue of Charles Darwin, a scientist famous for his climb an extinct volcano, Arthur's Seat, you get the theory of evolution. The Science Museum next door best view over the city. has exhibitions on Britain's industrial revolution, the history of flight and the exploration of space. For one of the earliest man-made structures in Britain, A ‘dangerous' castle
you shouldn't miss Stonehenge. This ancient stone One of the most spectacular examples of heritage circle attracts visitors from all over the world, but its outside London is Warwick Castle. Be careful as you origins remain a mystery.
Activity 3
Activity 4
Reorder the words to make a correct sentence.
Put capital letters where necessary.
1. as a / prison / The / Tower of London / used / 1. Representatives discuss new laws in the houses of 2. Much of the centre of the capital was destroyed by 2. about flight / and space / exploration / has the great fire of london.
exhibitions / Science Museum / The 3. The natural history museum is one of the biggest in 3. evidence of / in Britain / roads and baths / Roman / still find / You can 4. The river thames is nearly 350km long.
4. in York's / like to walk / medieval / streets / Visitors 5. The romans occupied the country for over 400 years.
6. Many people go to edinburgh in august to see theatre, 5. and an / Edinburgh / extinct volcano / festival / has music and dance.
Activity 5: Discussion topic
Which museums or monuments in your country would
you recommend?
British Council HCMC: (08) 3823 2862
5 UNESCO World Heritage sites in the UK
The castles of Beaumaris, Harlech, Caernarfon and Conwy are located in Gwynedd, in North Wales. These extremely well-preserved monuments are examples of the defence works carried out in the reign of Edward I (1272–1307).
Durham Cathedral was built in the late 11th and early 12th centuries. It is the largest and finest example of Norman architecture in England. Behind the cathedral is the castle, an ancient Norman fortress.
Blenheim Palace, near Oxford, lies in a romantic park created by the famous landscape gardener 'Capability' Brown. It was presented to John Churchill, first Duke of Marlborough, after his victory in 1704 over French and Bavarian armies. It was built between 1705 and 1722 and is a perfect example of an 18th-century aristocratic home.
Westminster Palace was rebuilt in 1840 on the site of important medieval remains. It is a fine example of neo-Gothic architecture. It is also the site of Westminster Abbey, where all British kings and queens have been crowned since the 11th century.
Canterbury's Christ Church Cathedral is a mixture of Romanesque and Perpendicular Gothic architectural styles. Archbishop Thomas Becket was murdered here in 1170. Canterbury's other important monuments include the modest Church of St Martin, the oldest church in England.
Activity 6
Activity 7
Match an answer to each question.
Complete the sentence with a time phrase.
1. Where is the oldest church in England? 1. Four Welsh castles were built . Edward I.
2. Where are all British coronations held? 2. Durham cathedral was finished .
3. Where can you see castles in good condition? 3. Blenheim Palace took . to build.
4. Where can you see a duke's present for winning in 4. Westminster Palace was rebuilt .
5. Canterbury Cathedral was the scene of a murder 5. Where is there a fortress and cathedral next to each b. in the second half of the 12th century c. during the time of d. in the first half of the 19th century e. Westminster Abbey A beautiful cathedral window A historic British castle Useful links
This content on video: The National Trust: / in Britain.
of the biggest in the country e, music and dance.
The Natural History Museum is one ou can / still find / e gh in August to see ctivity 7
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e of the capital Much of the centr 2. The / Science Museum / has omans occupied the in the Houses of Parliament. once / used / as a / prison.
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Activity 1
Match the word or phrase with a definition.
1. What do you call the thing in the wall of a bank that gives you money? a. bank teller b. cash machine c. cash flow 6. traffic lights 2. What do you call the machine you use to cut grass? a. grass cutter b. grass machine c. lawn mower a. a grid completed with words from cluesb. coloured signals to control vehicles 3. What do you call the process of putting blood into c. contagious disease causing fever and spots d. manual device to put out a fire a. transfusion b. dissection c. incision e. materials or fabrics 4. Which of these sports is not British in origin? f. with bubbles in a. rugby b. tennis c. basketball 5. What do you call the reflectors in the middle of the Activity 2
You are going to read a text about British innovations. a. cat's eyes b. traffic lights c. indicators Can you guess the answers to the following before you read? In Britain every student learns about the important Percy Shaw was coming home in the fog when his car advances in steam power, textiles and ironmaking lights were reflected in the eyes of a cat. This gave during the world's first industrial revolution. But the him the idea of putting reflectors in the middle of list of UK innovations is much longer.
the road for drivers to see at night – ‘cat's eyes'. He started his own factory, sold millions of the devices and became a wealthy man.
Who has not used a bicycle or stopped at traffic lights? The smallpox vaccine, blood transfusion and Radio with a difference
penicillin have saved many lives. Imagine daily life Trevor Baylis was watching a television programme without the telephone, the cash machine or the about the AIDS crisis in Africa. He realised that people worldwide web. And how many people enjoy football, needed a way to find out about the disease quickly rugby, golf or tennis? and cheaply. He produced a design for a wind-up radio. He combined a normal radio, a toy motor and The little things
the mechanism from a music box. No batteries were Everyday objects like the lawn mower, pram and fire extinguisher are also British inventions. So is the raincoat and the crossword puzzle. But who are the Another young inventor
innovators behind them? While still at school, Emily Cummins designed a device to make it easier for her grandfather to get Brilliant young mathematician
toothpaste from the tube – he was suffering from Ada Lovelace was the daughter of the poet Lord arthritis. At 17, she thought of a water container Byron. She designed a flying machine when she was for African countries which people could pull easily only 13, and became friends with a mathematics instead of carrying. professor at Cambridge University, Charles Babbage. While she was writing notes about his design for an So next time you use a piece of technology, ‘Analytical Machine' – an early mechanical computer remember – it could be British.
– she saw its potential. She wrote the world's first computer program and there is now even a programming language named after her.
Activity 3
Choose the correct option according to the text.
1. Smallpox/Penicillin has saved many lives.
2. Ada Lovelace wrote one of the first crossword puzzles/computer programs.
3. Percy Shaw is the inventor of cat's eyes/fog lights.
4. Trevor Baylis designed a wind-up battery/radio.
5. Emily Cummins developed a water/toothpaste container that you can pull.
British Council HCMC: (08) 3823 2862
5 great British inventions and inventors
What came before
Trivia about invention
Penny Black, showing Before this, ink and Ten others say they a picture of the young hand-stamps were invented the postage From 1929 to 1932 In 1884 there was an the BBC broadcast TV of the head of a electromechanical programmes using ventriloquist's dummy television system.
Baird's system.
Members of 1845 Arctic Drying, salting and Based on work by expedition suffered pickling were used the French inventor poisoning after eating to preserve food canned dog meat for before this.
three years.
26th century BC: a The Ajax ("a jakes"; It was the result of a type of flush toilet was jakes is an old slang long development.
used in the Indus Valley Before this, screws A machine that mass- The inventor of the produced identical steam hammer trained hand. No two were with Maudslay.
Source: Wikipedia Activity 4
Activity 6
Complete the sentences with the correct form of the Reorder the words and phrases to make correct past simple or continuous.
1. Ada Lovelace . (realise) the potential for 1. had the head / it / of Queen Victoria / on / stamp / Babbage's machine while she . (write) notes 2. a ventriloquist's / dummy / showed / The first / the head of / TV picture 2. While he . (drive) home in the fog, Percy Shaw 3. Arctic explorers / for three / meat / on canned / . (get) the idea for road reflectors.
survived / years.
3. Trevor Baylis first . (think of) making the first 4. ago / centuries / flush toilets / There were / 28 wind-up radio while he . (watch) a programme 5. identical screws / Machine tool / made / technology 4. Emily Cummins . (make) a device for getting toothpaste out of the tube while her grandfather Activity 7
. (suffer) from arthritis.
Match each of the words with a definition.
5. While I . (listen) to my portable music player, I . (remember) it was designed by a Brit.
a. ‘Loo' and ‘John' are ……………… words for ‘toilet'.
Activity 5: Discussion topic
b. Shall we just have some ………………. soup for lunch? What do you think are the top five innovations of the c. The furniture is ………………. in factories – that's why it's d. ……………… fish is a popular dish in some countries. You soak it in water before you cook it.
e. I bought her some ………………. chocolates for her Useful links
This content on video: British inventions: es; 4. radio; 5. water enicillin; 2. computer pr ctivity 3
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5. was listening / r entriloquist's / dummy 4. made / was suf / the first /identical scr The first / TV pictur 3. thought of / was watching; ctivity 2
Machine tool / technology / made Queen Victoria / on / it.
centuries / ago.
The first / stamp / had the head / of ealised / was writing; 2. was e / flush toilets / 28 / ctivity 6
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Activity 1
Activity 2
Match the word with a definition.
You are going to read a text about knowledge. Match a beginning and an ending to find some of the phrases mentioned in the text.
6. undergraduates a. connected to university or study b. information you can measurec. people studying for a first degreed. specialised parts of the university e. study after a first degreef. the study of something in detail Now read the text and find out if you were correct.
Centres of knowledge
Oxford and Cambridge are Britain's oldest universities. What about current research? Oxford has 3,800 Their academic traditions go back nine hundred years. staff in 70 departments specialising in everything They are among the top educational institutions in from African economies to vaccination. One institute is following 12,000 children in four countries over 15 years to study the effects of poverty. There is a Famous names
unit which is investigating how the human body can Oxford has educated many of Britain's politicians, combat cancer. The Department of Tropical Medicine writers and actors. Cambridge has produced some of is using mobile phones in the fight against malaria.
the best minds in science, including Charles Darwin and Isaac Newton. Both universities do important Warmer climate, stronger bridges
research and publish books. Geographers at Cambridge are coordinating data on climate change – and how it affects vegetation Secrets of success
and the spread of disease. Engineering scientists are Their academic success may be because the using technology to monitor bridges and tunnels so universities have separate colleges – where students that they don't collapse.
live, sleep and work. Undergraduates prepare and discuss topics every week in small groups, known as Going global
tutorials. Recently, over 90 per cent of students said UK universities have become more international. they were satisfied with their course. Oxford is involved in several programmes to study global health issues. A Cambridge department is studying the growing economies of Brazil and India. How have the two universities contributed to human Nearly two-thirds of students doing postgraduate knowledge? Henry Cavendish, the discoverer of research come from outside the UK, many from oxygen, was educated at Cambridge. Francis Crick the USA, China and Hong Kong. Who knows, maybe and James Watson, who first described the structure someone reading this will also be a student at one of of DNA, also worked there. Oxford University educated the UK's universities in the near future? Thomas Hobbes, the philosopher, and Tim Berners-Lee, the creator of the World Wide Web. Activity 3
Activity 4
Past or present? Put the correct form of the verb in 1. Oxford University and Cambridge University are brackets according to the information in the text.
more than five hundred years old.
1. Henry Cavendish . (discover) oxygen.
2. Crick andWatson studied at Oxford University.
2. An Oxford Institute . (study) child poverty 3. The majority of students are happy with their studies.
in four different countries.
4. Important advances in medicine happened at 3. Sixty per cent of Oxford postgraduates . (come) from outside Britain.
5. Some studies use new technology to fight disease.
4. Tim Berners-Lee . (create) the World Wide 6. Most advanced students at universities in the UK are 5. Scientists . (use) mobile phones to fight British Council HCMC: (08) 3823 2862
5 great British thinkers
Areas of learning
Famous for
He established and He died from pneumonia statesman, scientist popularised the scientific while putting snow in a chicken to preserve it.
Physicist, mathematician, Described universal astronomer, natural His mother wanted him to gravitation and the three be a farmer.
alchemist and theologian He was the first Scotsman Being a pioneer of to be on an English political economy One of the fathers of More than 20 universities Mathematician and computer science and have buildings or computer artificial intelligence labs named after him.
Hawking radiation (the His voice was used on parts theoretical prediction that of the Pink Floyd song physicist and author black holes should emit 'Keep Talking'.
Source: Wikipedia Activity 5: Discussion topic
Activity 7
Which areas of knowledge are universities in your Fill the gaps with a word from the text.
country famous for? 1. Someone who studies physics is a/an ……………… .
2. The first person to do something is a/an ……………….
Activity 6
3. Someone who works with mathematics is a/an Match an academic with a description.
4. Someone who writes books is a/an ………………….
5. Someone who studies planets and stars is a/an 4. Isaac Newton 5. Stephen Hawking a. He didn't live over 50.
b. He died doing an experiment.
c. He is on a pop song.
d. He was not born in England.
e. His mother wanted him to go into agriculture.
One of the colleges at Oxford University A view of Oxford University from the air Part of Oxford University's famous Bodleian Library Useful links
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ed; 2. is studying; 3. come; 4. cr ctivity 7
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Activity 1
Activity 2
Match the word with a definition.
You are going to read a text about literature. Can you match a name to an author? 1. David Copperfield a. Agatha Christie 2. Hercule Poirot b. Arthur Conan Doyle a. long story with imaginary people and events 3. Oliver Twist c. Charles Dickens b. people represented in a book 4. Sherlock Holmes d. Charles Dickens c. produced and sold a book d. part of a book Now read the text and find out if you were correct.
e. stories written from the imagination The power of the written word
published many of his novels in parts – people read a More books are published per person in the UK than new chapter of the story every week.
in any other country – 229 million were bought in Britain in 2011. That year's favourite sold nearly one A world of his own
million copies – and it was a novel.
Another master of language was JRR Tolkien. He was professor of Old English and used it for the names of his characters. He created a whole world from his British readers prefer fiction to any other type of study of Germanic mythology, first in The Hobbit and book. Some authors are as successful today as when then in the Lord of the Rings trilogy. You can see his they were alive. Take Charles Dickens; A Tale of Two influence in modern fantasy books and computer Cities has sold 200 million copies since 1859. His books have been made into films, television series and even musicals. So why is he still so popular? Crime novels
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's stories about Sherlock Holmes are famous, but the most successful writer Dickens was an expert in observing human beings of crime novels was Agatha Christie. Her best-loved – Ebenezer Scrooge in A Christmas Carol or Miss character was Hercule Poirot. Christie worked Havisham from Great Expectations, for example. in a pharmacy for a time – this gave her a useful His characters are often based on real people. Like knowledge of poisons. Several books were set in Dickens' own father, Mr Micawber in David Copperfield the Middle East after she travelled there with her went to prison for debt. husband, an archaeologist. She was good at creating suspense – people always wanted to read more. Dickens cared about poverty and injustice – think Characters that live longer than their inventors
of the story of Oliver Twist. He also describes Dickens died in 1870. JRR Tolkien and Agatha Christie London well, where he lived most of his life. There passed away in the 1970s. But Marley's Ghost, Bilbo is a memorable description of fog at the beginning Baggins and Miss Marple live on.
of Bleak House. Interestingly, Dickens wrote and Activity 3
5. Agatha Christie … Choose the best answer according to the text.
a. … used her life experiences in her books.
b. … was a trained scientist.
1. British people … c. … worked as an archaeologist for a while.
a. … bought 229 million novels in 2011. b. … like Charles Dickens more than any other writer. Activity 4
c. … like novels more than true stories.
Passive or active? Choose the correct form of the verb.
2. Charles Dickens … 1. Dickens was lived/lived in London. a. … lived many years in London. b. … died in 1859. 2. Many of Dickens' books made/were made into films.
c. … wrote musical versions of his books.
3. Mr Micawber based/was based on Dickens' father.
3. Charles Dickens … 4. Tolkien's book influenced/were influenced other a. … based Mr Micawber on someone he knew. b. … wrote a lot about nature and the countryside. 5. Some of Agatha Christie's novels set/were set in the c. … wasn't interested in how poor people lived.
4. JRR Tolkien … a. … was a teacher of German. Activity 5: Discussion topic
b. … used his knowledge of language in his books. Which do you prefer – reading the original book or c. … designed an early computer game.
watching the film version? British Council HCMC: (08) 3823 2862
5 British books that changed the world
Name of book
Describes universal It lays the foundations Sir Isaac Newton gravitation and the three for the physical laws Thomas Paine (1737– government is to protect Strongly influenced the rights of human Women are not inferior to One of the earliest Mary Wollstonecraft of the Rights of men, and deserve to have works of feminist an education.
Description of his Electricity could now many experiments with be used in technology.
On the Origin of How species evolve, work in the area of through natural selection evolutionary biology Source: Wikipedia Activity 6
Activity 7
Complete the questions with a name from the box.
Change the nouns below into adjectives – they are all in the text.
1. argued that women and men were equal? 2. showed how living things change naturally? 3. described three important laws of physics? 4. had electric results? 5. proposed the idea of human rights? A bookshop window Some of Agatha Christie's many novels Useful links
This content on video: British literature:
olutionary; 5. inferior 1. mathematical; 2. feminist; 3. e e made; 3. was based; 4. influenced; 5. 1. c/d; 2. a; 3. c/d; 4. b; 5. e ctivity 7
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Activity 1
Activity 2
Match a word or phrase with a definition.
You are going to read a text about music. Do you know what or who these are? a. circular platform that turns to play a recordb. collection of songs on one or more records/CDs c. concerts (informal) d. equipment that sound comes out of e. group of musicians f. play at a series of different places e. DJsNow read the text and find out if you were correct.
Coldcut didn't need instruments – just a turntable and One day two teenagers met on the way to college. One had some blues records under his arm. They began talking about the music. Later in a club, a Improving yourself
guitarist asked them to join his band. They found a Some singers got into music to do better than their place to practice, started playing gigs and attracting parents. Tom Jones was the son of a coal miner, and fans. Then they made an album and had their first Annie Lennox's father worked in the shipyards. Others number one; in five years they were millionaires.
changed their names. Reginald Dwight and Florian Cloud de Bounevialle O'Malley Armstrong didn't sell any records – Elton John and Dido sold millions. This is the story of the Rolling Stones, but it could be many others'. Music-making has always been a Places to play, places to listen
very popular activity. Britain is now the third biggest These days you can download music for free, so producer of music in the world. bands go on tour to make money. There are lots of places for live performances in the UK. Brixton Academy is an old-style dancehall. King Tut's in Groups are proud of where they come from. Cities Glasgow only has room for 300 people. But there often have a particular sound or style. Liverpool in are also many big arenas with modern seating and the 1960s had the Cavern Club, where many groups played, like the Beatles. Manchester created its own scene in the 1980s at the Hacienda club. In summer the best places for live music are festivals. Glastonbury is one of the oldest. It attracts big stars Several musical styles started in the UK. Punk gave for five days every June. There are plenty of free people the idea that anyone could start a band – events too, like the Strawberry Fair in Cambridge, musical ability wasn't so important. Dance DJs like which welcomes families.
Activity 3
Activity 4
Choose the correct option according to the text.
Find the spelling mistake in the following sentences 1. The Rolling Stones formed in a club/college.
1. They asked him to join the banned. 2. The Beatles used to play at the Hacienda/Cavern 2. The Cavern was a club were many groups played. 3. Manchester had a good music seen in the 1980s. 4. Tom Jones was a coal miner's sun.
3. Punk bands didn't always have musical ability/ 5. Glastonbury is a festival witch happens every June.
4. Tom Jones' father worked in a coal mine/shipyard.
Activity 5: Discussion topic
5. You have to pay to get in to Strawberry Fair/ How often do you see live music? British Council HCMC: (08) 3823 2862
5 great British bands
Main band members
Famous song/
John Lennon, Paul The Beatles (The McCartney, George Harrison, Ringo Starr Mick Jagger, Keith Greatest Artists Richards, Charlie Watts, It's Only Rock 'n Roll of All Time' list Ronnie Wood, Bill Pete Townshend, Roger Daltrey, John Entwistle, Keith Moon, Kenney magazine's ‘500 Greatest Albums of All Time' John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Jimmy Stairway to Heaven selling band ever Page, Robert Plant Syd Barrett, Roger The Dark Side of Wright, Nick Mason, Source: Wikipedia Activity 6
Activity 7
Complete with the correct preposition.
1. The Beatles were together for about 10 years. 1. The Who came . London.
2. The Rolling Stones have been together for over 50 2. The Rolling Stones formed . 1962.
3. Led Zeppelin were together from 1968 . 1980.
3. Led Zeppelin were the most successful group in the 4. The Beatles are the most successful group . all 4. Pink Floyd are still together. 5. Pink Floyd played together . 30 years.
5. The Who made more than six albums. Useful links
This content on video: UK Music: 2. The Beatles used to pla om; 2. in; 3. to; 4. of; 5. for 3. Manchester had a good music scene in the 1 olling Stones formed in a club.
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y to get in to Glastonbury al which happens e 5. Glastonbury is a festiv ed in a coal mine.
om Jones' father w om Jones was a coal miner's son.
e musical ability 3. Punk bands didn't alwa ctivity 1
Activity 1
Activity 2
Match the word or phrase with a definition.
You are going to read a text about shopping. Which of the following topics do you think will be mentioned? 4. department store 5. handicrafts 1. toys2. pet food b. big shop with different parts selling different things c. things like hats, belts and gloves d. looking casually around a shop e. money used in a particular country Now read the text and find out if you were correct.
f. traditional objects Europe's busiest shopping street
London is a shopper's paradise, and one of the best You can't leave London without visiting a market. One places to go is Oxford Street. Selfridges, one of the of the oldest is Borough market. Walk around and look world's first department stores, is here. There are at at the fresh fish, bakeries, and fruit and vegetable least four other major stores and Europe's largest sellers. You can also buy specialist food, like cheeses, music shop. In December the Christmas lights are pork pies and chutney. For antiques, jewellery or always switched on by a famous person. collector's items go to Portobello Road on a Saturday. You never know what you will find. If you like browsing Kids' heaven
for jewellery and gifts, there is nothing better than Nearby in Regent Street is Hamleys. This is the Covent Garden market. There are lots of cafés here biggest toy store in the world, opened in 1881. There and always some kind of street entertainment.
are seven floors, so kids can always find something they haven't got.
Back in time
If you are in the north of England, why not explore All things for all people
York's picturesque medieval quarter, known as The A fashionable area for shopping is Kensington Shambles. The narrow streets are always filled with High Street. You can buy clothes, cosmetics and shoppers. The old wooden buildings are so close they accessories here and there's an organic food almost touch each other.
supermarket. Harrods in Knightsbridge has 330 different departments and sells absolutely everything, Outside the city
from electronic goods and jewellery to pet food and Tired of city life? Most medium-sized towns in Britain furniture. The food hall is spectacular and if you feel have regular farmers' markets. Here local producers hungry, you can choose from 32 different restaurants. sell their food, drink and handicrafts – they will usually let you try the bread, cakes or wine before you buy. One market town called Totnes even introduced its own currency. Now seventy local businesses accept it.
Activity 3
2. If you want to buy fresh bread it's best to go to a Are the following statements true or false?1. Selfridges is the only large store in Oxford Street.
3. If you can't afford to go out at the weekend, then TV is often the only . (entertain).
2. Hamleys is about fifty years old.
4. The town has changed – there are many new 3. Harrods has hundreds of different sections.
4. Portobello Road is the best place to buy cheese.
5. These vegetables are grown by local . 5. At farmers' markets you can taste the products before buying.
Activity 4
Activity 5: Discussion topic
Use the correct form of the word to complete the What do you spend your money on? sentence.
1. Everyone's going to the new Morroccan restaurant – it's very . (fashion).
British Council HCMC: (08) 3823 2862
5 famous British shops
Number of
During the Second World War, the Regent Street store was bombed five times.
It is the largest bookshop in Europe, and the third largest in the world.
In 1920, Jesse Boot sold the company to the American United Drug Company. In 1933 his grandson, John Boot, bought it back again.
department store in Europe (90,000 m2).
It is the third-largest 6,351 stores (As retailer in the world (after Walmart and Carrefour).
Source: Wikipedia Activity 6
Activity 7
Match a description to a shop.
Complete the sentences using the passive, e.g. (make) = was made.
1. It has been in two different London streets. a. Boots 1. Hamleys . (bomb) during WWII.
2. It has half a million employees. 2. Waterstones . (open) in 1982.
3. It has nearly 300 stores. 3. Boots . (sell) in 1920.
4. It is going to open in Argentina. 4. Harrods . (found) in 1834.
5. It was sold to a US company. 5. Tesco . (start) in 1919.
Harrods Food Hall - a selection of luxury food The Burberry store in Bond Street, London Useful links
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Activity 1
Activity 2
Match the word with a definition.
You are going to read a text about sport. Which sport(s) 2. competitiveness 3. impressive do you think did not originally come from the UK? 1. rugby2. tennis a. course for races b. leader of a sports team c. respected because it is important or very big d. series of gamese. speak briefly about Now read the text and find out if you were correct.
f. wanting to be better than someone else The 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games brought The bigger sports venues have become famous. Think the world's attention to sport like never before. It was of Silverstone for motor racing, Ascot for horse racing impressive to see a small nation like the UK organise or Wembley for football. Mention the names Old the Olympics for the third time in modern history.
Trafford, Stamford Bridge or Anfield to most people between the ages of 8 and 80 and they know instantly what you are talking about.
Britain probably invented quite a few modern sports. One is cricket, which is now played at international Who's your favourite?
level in a dozen countries. Tennis also first became So who do the British think are their best sportsmen popular here and Wimbledon is one of four big and women? In the 1960s it was the England football tournaments every year. Golf is supposed to be captain, Bobby Moore. Ten years later, tennis player Scottish in origin, rugby from a school of the same Virginia Wade or athlete Mary Peters were stars. In the 1980s, it was the turn of cricketer Ian Botham or Olympic decathlete Daley Thompson. Today the Opportunity for all
marathon runner Paula Radcliffe is very popular.
Every town in Britain has a football, rugby or cricket club (sometimes all three) and at least one swimming It doesn't matter if you win, it's how you play the
pool. Schools often have a gymnasium and playing fields with a running track. As Britain is an island, ‘Fair play' in British society is as important as winning there are lots of opportunities for practising water or losing. Teamwork is also necessary in many sports as well.
areas of professional life. Even so, individualism and competitiveness make sporting champions.
Nowadays you often need qualifications, and common You can do it
sports courses include Master's Degrees in Sports Steve Redgrave, winner of gold at five Olympic Science or Sports Management, diplomas in training Games, says: ‘Self-belief is probably the most crucial or coaching, and certificates in anything from aikido factor in sporting success … It is the iron in the mind, to women's boxing.
not the supplements, that wins medals.' Activity 3
Activity 4
Reorder the words to make a correct sentence.
Fill in the gap with a suitable word from the text.
1. Games / in the / Olympic / The 2012 / United / b. qualifications Kingdom / were held 2. in Britain / many clubs / and sports / There are / 1. A good trainer is an important . in an athlete's success.
3. a sports / is possible / It / qualification / to do / to 2. A lot of people take vitamin and mineral 4. and women / are / as famous as / Sports venues / 3. If you train hard you might be a world . 5. are / common / in everyday / life / Sporting attitudes 4. In the Olympics, the . of an event gets the gold medal.
5. Nobody is sure of the . of the word ‘OK'.
6. She has all of the right . for the job.
British Council HCMC: (08) 3823 2862
5 great British sportswomen
Won silver medal medals, including in the marathon, World record for the fastest solo circumnavigation crossing time by world sailing race Holder of all three world and Ironman Triathlon records relating distance triathlon races Source: Wikipedia Activity 5: Discussion topic
Activity 7
Do you prefer to watch or play sports? Write out the correct number, e.g. Paula Radcliffe has won the London Marathon three times.
1. Lottie Dod died in n .
Activity 6
2. Tanni Grey-Thompson won s . Paralympic Order the words to make correct sentences.
1. archery champion / golf and / Lottie Dod / tennis, / 3. Paula Radcliffe was born in n .
4. Ellen MacArthur failed to break the transatlantic 2. has won / Marathon / six / times / Tanni Grey- crossing time by just s . minutes.
Thompson / the London 5. Tanni Grey-Thompson has over t . world records.
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Become aware of how native speakers behave and copy them. Watch a native English speaker's mouth on television. Note what shapes they make and try to copy them. Listen out for characteristic "English" sounds and copy them too. What noises do they make when they are thinking? How do they take turns to speak? What happens to their voices when they get angry or embarrassed? Do they only smile in certain situations or with certain people? All these things are just as important as the words they use.
Ask a native speaker you know to help you with English you don't understand. Keep your questions simple and don't expect your friend to know their English grammar as well as you do.
Talk to yourself in the mirror. Sing your favourite songs in English to copy the native speaker sounds. Have a set of general topics to choose from and take a new one each day.
Try to think in English.
Ask yourself: How would I say that in English? How could I explain that idea to an English Set up a conversation group.
Meet regularly to talk in English. If you are preparing for an oral exam/interview, ask one friend to practise the interview with you and another to listen and give you constructive feedback on your performance. Then swap roles. Keep your conversations on topics you are familiar with. If you don't know what to say, change the subject or keep quiet until you feel you can contribute easily again.
Write familiar conversation topics on cards. Take a card and speak about the topic for two minutes. Record yourself and then listen, checking for things you could improve. Next time you take the same card, can you speak more confidently? Learn some English: sentences which you need again and again. Practise so that you can say them in conversation without having to worry.
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Learn five words a day. Note them in a small diary, five words for each day. In this way you quickly build up a large set of vocabulary. If you keep the diary in your pocket, it is easy to review it on the bus or in a queue or why not record them at the back of this booklet.
Create a personal dictionary. Use a notebook to organise your vocabulary. Decide how you want to sort out the words: • parts of speech (eg all the adjectives together) • topic area (eg food, crime) • function of the language (eg suggesting, complaining) If you use an address book with A-Z dividers, you could make an alphabetical sequence.
Keep a scrapbook of headlines, articles and advertisements.
Include vocabulary that interests or amuses you. Write down phrases you hear on television or read and note the context they were in.
Use pictures to record idioms. Draw a cartoon picture to make each expression more memorable: eg "a storm in Use the idioms to label a poster of your favourite singer or actor. Put "He pulled her leg" next to the leg, "She has no heart!" next to the heart, "She didn't believe her eyes" next to the eyes, and so on. This may help you remember them better.
Make vocabulary cards.
Write the English word on one side and the translation in your language on the other. Prepare the cards with new vocabulary and then use the cards to test yourself. Look at the English word and try to remember the translation. You could also try to explain the meaning of the word (How would a dictionary define it?) or think of a sentence including the word. This is another activity which is easy to do when you have a few minutes of free time if you keep the cards in your pocket or bag.
Grammar Tips
Read & listen to English every day.
Reading and listening to natural English will expose you to a lot of new grammar in a natural context. Find magazines that interest you, watch films in English and read simplified readers with tapes, or do the crossword in the newspaper.
Try to work rules out for yourself.
Try and work out rules for yourself before checking in a reference book. If you try to work things out for yourself first, this will help you remember it better. It's also good practice as you won't have a reference book with you all the time, so you'll often have to guess the meaning of unknown words.
Keep a notebook.
Have a separate notebook for grammar. When you come across sentences or paragraphs with good, clear examples of structure and grammar, write them in your notebook. Grammar rules need good examples to help you to better understand. Don't just learn the translation. Practise using the grammar and vocabulary in the right context in written and spoken sentences.
As well as writing in a notebook, try to stick what you've learned in a place where you often see it. For example, you could stick it next to your mirror in the bathroom. While you're brushing your teeth, read through the list and try to remember them. You could stick words on the walls or beside your computer.
Learn words in groups or phrases.
There are many words in English that go together. Try to learn words together with their partners and not words on their own, e.g. phrases (brush up your English), adjectives or verbs with prepositions (interested in, listen to, verb and noun collocations - do your homework).
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Reading Tips
Remember that there are different ways of reading.
Think about the process of reading. When you skim read, you just get a general idea about the content. If you are looking for something particular, for example the name of your team on the sports pages, you scan the text for more detail.
Read actively.
When you do any reading, predict what the text is going to be about from the title or the pictures. After you have read the text, do something with the new information you have, think about these questions: • Who is the article about? • Where and when is the article talking about? • What are the main points of the article? • What kind of people would find the article interesting to read? • What is your opinion of/reaction to the article? Share your understanding.
If someone you know has read the same article, talk about it with them. What do they think? Do you agree with them? Read the same material in English as you would in your language. If you enjoy reading about fashion in your language, read about fashion in English too. You will already understand some of the vocabulary and ideas and have a good background knowledge. Conversely, if you hate films and never go to the cinema, reading an English-language film review will probably not be a useful exercise for you because you won't enjoy it.
If you have access to the same material in your language and in English, compare the two versions. How has the translator expressed the same idea in the new language? Is it a good translation? What would you change? Are the texts exactly the same? Set yourself a reading target.
Reading one article every day is better than reading a whole paper only once a fortnight. Ask your teacher to recommend suitable materials.
Listen to the radio news or watch a television news programme at the same time every day. How many stories are there? Note down what each story is about (think: when, where, who, what).
If you can, record the programme and listen to/watch it again to check details from the first time. You cannot do this in "real life" but it is very useful practice and it means you find out what you got right the first time and this will boost your confidence.
Alternatively, record a news programme without listening to/watching it. Then play only the headlines. Stop the tape and predict what the stories will be about. Then listen to check your predictions. Use one of the stories as a dictation text. Listen several times and write down what you hear.
Don't force yourself to listen for too long. Set yourself realistic goals. For example, when listening to the weather forecast, just listen for the temperature and weather conditions for your city/area for the next day. Don't worry about information which won't affect you.
If there are similar programmes in your language and in English, compare them. Is the content exactly the same? Are the opinions given similar? What are the differences? Native listeners don't often listen to or understand 100% of what they hear. Non-native listeners shouldn't try to either. Work on strategies to find out what people are talking about – listen for clues about the topic, the speakers' opinions/feelings and the type of relationship they have (eg boss and employee, colleagues, wife and husband). Practise on the bus by eavesdropping on (secretly listening to) other people's conversations. Or, try to work out what a tv/radio programme is about when you've missed the beginning.
If you are watching an English-language film with subtitles in your language, listen to check if the subtitles are accurate. Are they a direct translation or just a summary of what is said? If you hear a bilingual announcement, is the grammar exactly the same? Notice the differences and the similarities.
Watch a television soap opera every day so you get to know the story and characters. Knowing the background and context makes listening easier.
Enjoy listening. Use an English-language workout video and "kill two birds with one stone". Listen to songs in English and learn your favourite lyrics.
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Writing Tips
Find a penfriend and write letters to him or her. Penfriends can be a relative or someone you've never met in another country or simply a classmate you keep in touch with by letter as well as see in class. Use e-mail as a quick way to keep in touch.
Keep a diary of your thoughts and ideas. Write down how you are feeling and what is on your mind at the moment. Write freely and don't worry about making mistakes. You need to balance accuracy and fluency in your written work as well as in your spoken English. You can use these personal reflections and ideas in more structured writing (e.g. essays) later on.
Also write down what you have been doing to practise English. Note anything that strikes you about how you learn. You can look back through these notes to see what helped you and what didn't. The better you understand how you learn, the more effectively you can plan your learning.
Brainstorm ideas when deciding what to write. This means putting every idea you have on to paper in note form. Once you have a lot of ideas, you can sort out the good from the not so good, but initially it is useful just to get as wide a variety of ideas as possible.
When preparing to write a letter or an essay, don't forget that you need to plan first. What points do you think you need to make? What order should you put them in for the best effect? Thinking about these things before you start: then you can concentrate more on getting the grammar and vocabulary correct when you are writing.
Keep your own writing file of authentic examples of different text types (business and personal letters you receive, postcards, advertisements and instructions, etc). When you have to write something similar, you can then copy ideas for layout, organisation and content from a real example.
When you have a piece of writing checked by a teacher, make a note of the mistakes you have made. We all have particular, "personal" errors we frequently make. Write up a checklist of these mistakes so that you can go through your next piece of writing before you hand it in to make sure you haven't made the same mistakes again. For example: good at (not in), occasion (not ocassion) Record yourself reading a short text aloud and then use this later as a dictation ie write down what you hear.
Pronunciation Tips
One area which causes many pronunciation problems in East Asia is stress. Do you know what
stress is? No, not that kind of stress!!! Word stress! So, what does this mean?
Every word is made up of syllables. Some words have only one syllable. Most words , however, have more than one syllable. For example, Ta–ble has 2 syllables A–gen–da has 3 syllables In–tro–duc–tion has 4 syllables Con–grat–u–la–tions has 5 syllables In–ter–con–ti–nen–tal has 6 syllables. In every English word of more than one syllable, one of the syllables is stressed. This means we say it louder and stronger than the other syllables. Putting the stress on the wrong syllable can make it difficult for your listener to understand you. Why not test yourself or even test your friends or parents? Have a go! First try to count how many syllables the words have, and then try to say which syllable is stressed. Ready? Ok.
So, how did you do? Let's start with number one: Purchase Did you say a) PURchase or b) purCHASE? If you guessed b) I'm afraid you're
wrong! This is a word you often hear mispronounced in East Asia. In standard English the stress should be on the 1st syllable PUR chase.
Calendar Did you say a) caLENdar or b) CALendar? If you guessed b) you're correct! This is
another word you often hear mispronounced in East Asia. In Standard English the stress should be on the 1st syllable CALendar.
Vegetable This word has 4 parts – veg/e/ta/ble – right? Wrong. It looks like 4 parts but in
standard English, this word has only 3 parts. It's pronounced as VEG/ta/ble – the middle part is silent.
In East Asia, with computers everywhere, we often hear this word as moDEM. But in standard English, we actually pronounce the word as MOdem - MO rhyming with so.
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Another reason it's very important to know word stress is many words in English can be both
nouns and verbs. For example, let's look at the word record.
Could you record American Idol on Channel 5 for me tonight?
In this sentence, record is a verb and the stress in on the 2nd syllable.
We have no record of your application.
In this sentence, record is a noun and the stress is on the first syllable.
Why not test yourself! Can you choose the correct word? Where is the stress? 1. It's my sister's birthday. I need to buy her a a) PRE-sent or b) pre–SENT. (noun)2. The president is going to a) pre SENT or b) PRE sent him with a medal of honour. ( verb)3. The teachers a) OB ject or b) ob JECT to students using their mobile phones in class. ( verb)4. The a) OB ject or b) ob JECT of the game is to win as many card as you can. (noun) 5. a) IM ports or b) im PORTS of oil have risen dramatically in recent years. (noun)6. Singapore a) IM ports or b) im PORTS a lot of dairy products from Australia. (verb) Did you get them correct? 1 – a, 2 – a, 3 – b, 4 – a, 5 – a, 6 – b. So, can you work out any rule from these examples. • If the word is a noun, we stress the first syllable • If the word is a verb, we stress the second syllable So, watch out for these words in future and look at the context to work out if it a noun or a verb.
Irregular verbs
Irregular Verbs

Simple Past
Simple Past
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Sounds and phonemic chart
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products for adults, teenagers and children learning English.
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Our apps are suitable for all English learners,
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The British Council's latest learner website, LearnEnglish Teens, is designed
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• learn about life, trends and traditions in the UK through articles and videos • practise their grammar and vocabulary with videos and exercises in snack-size bites • find top tips to help them through all the different English exams and tests they have to do at school.
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A phonics-based story app helps children learn to read and speak English. Each story practises phonics sounds and includes a game and dictionary. A Teachers Guide offers expert advice on how to help young children learn English. LearnEnglish Kids: Phonics Stories
A phonics-based story app helps children learn to read and speak English. Each story practises phonics sounds and includes a game and dictionary. A Parents Guide offers expert advice on how to help young children learn English. LearnEnglish Kids: Videos
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Carotid endarterectomy—An evidence-based review: Report of the Therapeutics and Technology Assessment Subcommittee of the American Academy of Neurology S. Chaturvedi, A. Bruno, T. Feasby, R. Holloway, O. Benavente, S. N. Cohen, R. Cote, D. Hess, J. Saver, J. D. Spence, B. Stern and J. Wilterdink Neurology 2005;65;794-801 DOI: 10.1212/01.wnl.0000176036.07558.82

This article appeared in a journal published by Elsevier. The attached copy is furnished to the author for internal non-commercial research and education use, including for instruction at the authors institution and sharing with colleagues. Other uses, including reproduction and distribution, or selling or licensing copies, or posting to personal, institutional or third party