The BLC Blog

A forum and learning place for British Language Centre students

Thursday, July 19, 2007

The Spanish Armada

The anniversary of Philip II's invasion fleet is coming up on 21 July. Why not read a bit about it from the British perspective? The BBC has several interesting articles on the Armada, Queen Elizabeth I and more.

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Monday, July 16, 2007

More Australian English

It hasn't been such a great Tour for the Aussies, but Australia's Special Broadcasting Service site has some excellent coverage of the different stages and the Tour in general, including video and audio. There are also some hilarious short promotional videos by one of my favourite [AmEng favorite] riders, sprinter Robbie McEwen, who unfortunately is out of the race at this stage.

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Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Listen up!

Fancy a bit of listening pratice?

The Australia network has some short videos called The Business of English. As the name suggests, they're role plays on business-related subjects. They can be watched in your browser and are accompanied by a tapescript. A good chance to practice your listening skills, here an accent you probably don't get much opportunity to listen to and get a bit of business vocabulary.

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Friday, July 6, 2007

The Tour!

Hooray! The Tour de France starts tomorrow! I know a lot of people think bicycle racing is a silly sport, but I absolutely love it. For a bit of cycling vocabulary and some "Franglish", why not check out the BBC's Tour Phrasebook?

This year the Tour is setting off from London for the first time in its history. The BBC is full of other information on the race, including a good Tour tutorial.

Lance Armstrong, love him or hate him, he still wrote a very compelling autobiography called It's Not About the Bike. I found it fascinating.

Sports Illustrated takes a look at some of this year's main contenders.

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Tuesday, July 3, 2007


Another slice of Canadian life:

The Canadian one-dollar coin (Canadian and American coins all have the same names, but more on that later.) has a picture of a loon (a type of bird) on it. Not long after it was introduced, folks (people) started calling them "loonies" and it stuck.

The funny thing is that while the loon is a bird, a loony/looney is a crazy, insane or very foolish and silly person. Crazy money!

You'll never guess what they started calling the two-dollar coin when it appeared: a twonie/toonie!

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Sunday, July 1, 2007

Happy Canada Day!

Today is Canada's national holiday, Canada Day.

To celebrate, why not read up on Canadian English, eh? You could also check out the NHL Web site. Or even treat your friends to a rousing rendition of Oh, Canada!

For a French version of the country, why not plan a trip to Montréal?

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