Linguivocal

podcast and blog about my English learning

Archive for the ‘uncategorised’ Category

2006 kick off

Posted by shashi on June 10, 2006

And so it begins!

The waiting was almost over for millions of football fans from all over the world with the first match in the World Cup kicked off yesterday afternoon. I am the big fan of football. I love this game as it is the fastest and most thriller game. For 90 minutes, you almost stick with the game and your heart beats faster and faster as the game progresses. World cup is the highest point of enjoyment for football fans and I am not the exception.

Even though India is not qualified for world cup, there are thousand of millions of Indian fans who love the football game.

It’s hard to guess who will be the winner but I think Brazil is strong and professional team and they are world champion of the last world cup. However, previous history says that whenever Brazil is considered as the winner they usually didn’t win, so it’s good to see whether they could break this record or not. After Brazil, I think England is the best team and I consider them as a dark horse. Beckham, Rooney, Garrard are some of the well know names from English camp. I am much confident about England team. Today, they are going to play their first match with Paraguay. I am much excited to watch this match. It will start at 2 pm BST and you can watch this match on BBC one.

 

 

Posted in uncategorised | 2 Comments »

DWN- struggle at the beginning

Posted by shashi on May 17, 2006

Deutsch-Warum nicht?  (German-Why not?)

I am getting familiar with German as I progress in it. Right now, my strategy is to just listen to contents over and over again. I am a bit lingered, as I didn’t find authentic content on the Net. However I feel that I should study some very beginner level content, as I am totally new to German.

There are some basic differences in German as apposed to English and I am trying to understand them. Firstly, in German, there are different articles for nouns depending on the gender of noun. In English, we use only “the” as a definite article, like the tree, the car, the book etc. However, in German, we use der, die, das before noun as a definite article. If the noun is masculine then we use der, e.g. der Man (the man), and die for feminine nouns e.g. die Frau (the woman) and das for neuter noun. So, it is better to learn the nouns with their gender to avoid confusion.

Also, when you meet with a new person or someone who is older than you, then you should address him more politely or more formally. There are different pronouns for formal situations and for familiar one. In German, people don’t use first names until you are close one (and some times it would take many years for you to become familiar). This is a good example of how language and culture are intertwined, and you need to be aware of this to avoid embarrassing yourself and others.

I’ve found two interesting sites, which provide good audio and texts contents for very beginner students. It is very difficult to retain the words that I have studied. It is also difficult to use online dictionary, as I didn’t find good electronic dictionary. I would try to form good foundation so that at least I could understand some basic words and phrases.

I would like to state here that even though I believe in Steve’s method, initially I prefer to study some basic grammar rule. At first when I started to study German, I found it very difficult to understand it, as I knew nothing about grammar. Then I decided to study some basic grammar rule like pronouns, verb table, alphabets and so on. This helps me understand the structure of sentences. Now I just read and listen to contents over and over again and build my own vocabulary.

Posted in German, uncategorised | Leave a Comment »

The Linguist and English learning

Posted by shashi on April 13, 2006

the linguist logo.gif

Since I have joined the linguist, my English is quite improved. Initially I was not confident that I could speak in English even though I had studied English for 10 years during my school days. The linguist has given me self-confidence that I can do it.

 The linguist gives you a head start with learning English. There are so many plus points in the linguist that enable you to learn in good way. This system is not a collection of grammar explanation nor it is based on classroom discussions. The core part of the system is a vast library of real authentic conversations. You can find about over 600 contents, which are recorded by native speakers. Here you are not forced to study particular topic but you can study the content of your interest from its huge library. With the linguist you can study the language whenever you find free time. You can study in car, during your office journey, when you are playing or when you are doing household chores. There is no restriction on the time. 

If you find some difficulty, your tutor is available to help you at any time. You can take part in-group discussion under the guidance of your Tutor so that your tutor can correct you. You can work on your pronunciation at pronunciation section and can compare your pronunciation with native speaker. If you write something you can submit it for correction. So all in all, it is a complete language system  and I am really enjoying my English learning.

Posted in My Diary, The Linguist, uncategorised | Leave a Comment »

Canadian Londoner

Posted by shashi on April 12, 2006

bbc.gif

Content studied: Canadian Londoner

Listen to London Life: 

Interesting words and phrases:

1.Collin moved here over thirty years ago.

2. There is a world of difference between living in London and in England.

       a big difference

3. Hitchhiker:

       someone who travels by getting free rides in someone else's vehicle

4.  He stayed here and he has been here ever since.

       Continually since that time:
       He's been depressed ever since he got divorced.

5. Collin had a head start with French because he learnt it when he was a young.

       An advantage in a competition or endeavours.
       A good education gives you a head start when it comes  to getting a job.

6. Lumberjack:

       Someone who cut down the tries.

Posted in BBC Learning English, London Life, uncategorised | Leave a Comment »

learning English

Posted by shashi on April 10, 2006

Watch this funny video and start learning English as soon as possible. 

Posted in uncategorised, videos | 3 Comments »

Housework

Posted by shashi on March 14, 2006

 

Most of the people don’t like domestic chores or housework and they find it boring but it has to be done. Housework might include vacuuming or hovering (which is cleaning carpet with the vacuum machine which sucks up dirt), dusting (which is wiping a cloth over furniture and the other objects to remove dust), washing up (which is cleaning dishes), ironing and doing the laundry.  Not every one likes doing housework, some people like one task more than others. Some people find it ok to do the things like washing and cleaning but they don’t like ironing. Most of the women love dusting. They are very good at washing up and they really like to tidy up their kitchen.If two or more people live together there is often disagreement about who should do what. In some societies people complain that it’s not fair because women do most of the work. In Spain they have even been moved to make things more equal with a law, which states the man who marry, must do half of the housework. Many women with a professional or political career also have to worry about running the home, looking after the children or even older family members and it seems that these domestic responsibilities apply only to women. Even in UK research suggests that men do less work than women although the situation has changed over the years. Men are much more involved in domestic chores than they used to be. An important part of this change has been in child’s care. In 70’s, men were spending about 15 minutes of a day on childcare and by the mid 90’s that had gone up to 2 hours a day so it has been a considerable shift. Men are contributing vastly more than they were but of course women are still doing a lion’s share in majority of household. There have been significant improvements but there is still a long way to go.

Posted in BBC Learning English, Interesting reads, uncategorised, Weekender | Leave a Comment »

Michel Jackson’s photographer

Posted by shashi on March 12, 2006

 

Michel Jackson is one of the biggest selling artists of all time. He is best known for his music, dancing and his live shows. A photographic exhibition about Michel, which captures important moments in both his public and private life, recently opened in London.  One of the photographers in exhibition is Harrison Funk who was Jackson’s official photographer between 1984 and 1995. Harrison described what was he liked to be as his official photographer and what kind of emotion did he feel at first. Harrison said he was nervous and it was a bit of nerve-wracking experience but after some time his job became a commonplace, a part of his daily routine. Harrison funk took photographs of Michel over number of years when he was one of the best-known musicians in the world.  He saw him as a personality who played many different roles in his public life. Harrison describes him as a showman, performer and an entertainer. But Harrison said Jackson can also appeared to be like as statesman, an experienced and famous senior politician. He can also be like as a diplomat or an ambassador of good will. He was also a very private person. Harrison believes it is a very difficult task to capture all of these aspects of Jackson’s life in a photograph. He feels it is a daunting task for him. 
 
Nerve-wracking experience
an event that makes you feels tense and worried
She said that taking her final examination was a nerve-wracking experience

Daunt /daunting                                                                                If something daunts you then you feel little worried or afraid about dealing with it.

Commonplace                                                                                Part of daily routine                                                                                    Air travel has now become a commonplace, as flights are so cheap.

Posted in BBC Learning English, Interesting reads, News English, uncategorised | 8 Comments »

Ban on smoking

Posted by shashi on March 11, 2006

In UK, a historic ban took place and that is total ban on smoking in enclosed places such as restaurant, clubs and pubs. No smoking in London pubs? That’s hard to imagine but it’s true. Hereto after there will be no smoking in enclosed public places. One of the reasons for the ban is to protect the health of people who work in pubs and clubs because where they work they have to breath in the other people’s smoke in air: the second hand smoke, it is called as passive smoking. Another reason for the ban is to encourage smokers to give up. Medical authorities say that this ban will save lives very soon, in a short term.

All over Britain the news about smoking ban was a big topic of conversations in pubs and clubs. People’s reactions on smoking ban are more encouraging. Some of them who are regulars at pub say that even though there is smoking ban they won’t stop going to pubs. Most of the people including the smokers agree with the ban. The ban is good for people who don’t smoke and who wants to come out and have a social evening in the pubs. When you go to pub, you are a non-smoker but the person on the next table is smoking. All it is second hand smoke and that’s why most of the people agree that there should be ban. Smokers are also not against the ban as it might encourage them to stop smoking.

  

What do you think? Do you for or against the smoking?

Posted in BBC Learning English, Health, London Life, My Diary, uncategorised | 3 Comments »

Pancake race ..a strange tradition

Posted by shashi on March 7, 2006

Hey guys, could you guess what it is? No…..it’s not a relay race nor a marathon. It’s actually a pancake race.  I don’t know about other countries but in the UK there is rather strange tradition associated with Strove Tuesday and yes, that is the pancake race.

Strove Tuesday is a feast day. A feast is one when you eat a lot of good foods in one go. On strove Tuesday, Christians traditionally feasted before lent. Lent is forty days before Easter and for Christians it is time for a fasting. So Shrove Tuesday is seen as a last chance to use up things like eggs and fats before the fasting started.

Pancake race is quite interesting race where large number of people raced down the street tossing pancake and trying not to drop them. It’s relay type race and there are four people in each team and there is about 30 to 40 yards stretch. Each member has to run up this stretch carrying a frying pan with a pancake inside it. On the way, they have to flip the pancake in the air at least twice. When they get the end, they have to pass the pan with the cake to the next member who then runs back. If you drop the cake then you have to pick it up and put it back in you frying pan. Unless you finish the race with your pancake in your frying pan, you automatically disqualified.


It’s so strange…..isn’t it?

 Prize-winning ceremony. Now it's time to eat pancakes  Prize-winning ceremony. Now it's time to eat pancakes

Posted in BBC Learning English, Interesting reads, London Life, My Diary, uncategorised | Leave a Comment »