Saturday, December 22, 2012

What did George Orwell want to tell us? (Writing in English: Advanced Writing. Class 13/12/2012. Teacher: Mel0dy Lyric)

Animal Farm at a Glance

Book Summary:Animal Farm is George Orwell's satire on equality, where all barnyard animals live free from their human masters' tyranny. Inspired to rebel by Major, an old boar, animals on Mr. Jones' Manor Farm embrace Animalism and stage a revolution to achieve an idealistic state of justice and progress. A power-hungry pig, Napoleon, becomes a totalitarian dictator who leads the Animal Farm into "All Animals Are Equal / But Some Are More Equal Than Others" oppression.

Written by: George Orwell
Type of Work: novel
Genres: political satire; allegory
First Published: August 17, 1945
Setting: Mr. Jones' Manor Farm

Main Characters: Old Major; Snowball; Napoleon; Squealer; Boxer; Mollie; Benjamin; Moses; Jones; Frederick; Pilkington
Major Thematic Topics: animalism; mob rule; virtue; religion as a drug; distortion of reality; death; false allegiance; political corruption

Motifs: rebellion; power; communism

Major Symbols: Cold War; the barn; the windmill

The three most important aspects of Animal Farm:

•    Animal Farm is an allegory, which is a story in which concrete and specific characters and situations stand for other characters and situations so as to make a point about them. The main action of Animal Farm stands for the Russian Revolution of 1917 and the early years of the Soviet Union. Animalism is really communism. Manor Farm is allegorical of Russia, and the farmer Mr. Jones is the Russian Czar. Old Major stands for either Karl Marx or Vladimir Lenin, and the pig named Snowball represents the intellectual revolutionary Leon Trotsky. Napoleon stands for Stalin, while the dogs are his secret police. The horse Boxer stands in for the proletariat, or working class.

•    far worse than our own, as opposed to a utopia, which is an ideal place or state. Other dystopian novels include Aldous Huxley's Brave New World, Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451, and Orwell's own 1984.
•    The most famous line from the book is "All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others." This line is emblematic of the changes that George Orwell believed followed the 1917 Communist Revolution in Russia. Rather than eliminating the capitalist class system it was intended to overthrow, the revolution merely replaced it with another hierarchy. The line is also typical of Orwell's belief that those in power usually manipulate language to their own benefit.

Essay-writing questions:
•    Who are the main characters of the story?
•    What are the main events of the story?
•    What roles do the main characters play in the main events of the story?
•    Is there a moral to the story? If yes, what do you think it is?
•    What did you learn from the story?

My story
What is the main idea of Orwell’s story? I know the answer to this question because I was born when socialism was occurring within my country.

All of the characters within this novel are recognizable people from my country (Russia). And, I am not going to describe the history of previous centuries in Russia only in “black colors.” No, I grew up in that kind of society, and we believed in equity.

Now, I understand that there is only one way for societal development to occur, which is in the form of democracy. But, the opposite of that kind of authoritative leadership, including dictatorship, possibly can be used in certain kinds of situations. For example, during the Cold War, natural cataclysms, and injustice did occur. Furthermore, the last statement I made can be referred to as the “Occupy Wall-Street” movement.

But, coming back to Orwell’s story, I do understand his use of satiric humor. I love the way he described some of the heroes within his fictitious world. His choice to use animal characters is a great writing method because it allows us to laugh. at ourselves. Just imagine a dog as being a secret service officer. Or, a horse as being a presenter of the proletariat, etc. He did a wonderful and profound job of creating a work, which can be used by everyone who cares about the future of mankind.


Friday, December 21, 2012

Unknown feature of IMDb site

I discovered that an interesting possibilities of The Internet Movie Database (IMDb, ) some times ago. It’s likely that this feature could be interesting for people who like cinema and, especially, for students who study English.This internet-page  allows us to observe somebody’s collections of his/her favorite movies. The page is refreshing constantly. We can see there how many minutes agothe last list was created. We can read in English a short description (and comments) about any film from the database and comments. After quick registration, we can create our own list of our favorite movies (this is my list ).We only need to write there the title of our favorite movies.  The picture and the description appear automatically (they are taken from the database).What kind of movies do you like? An answer for this question from people with similar preferences might help you to choose the next movie to watch. By using this site we can find people with the similar "taste in movies" and take their recommendations for ourselves. And we are involved in the process of the movies assessment. Somebody might say thanks for your rating.


Friday, December 14, 2012

Dream about Australia

Dream about Australia

(Writing in English: Advanced Writing. Class 09/12/2012.  Teacher: DeliaBrown Resident)

Match the lists of words with the correct definitions.
1. The habits, traditions and beliefs of a group of people.
2. To decide that an organised event will not happen.
3.  A journey when you visit a place for a short time and come back again.
4. The activity of visiting places which are interesting.
5. Someone who visits a place for pleasure and does not live there.
6. The place where you stay.
7. To arrange to use or do something at a particular time in the future.  
8. A thin book with pictures and information, usually advertising something.
9. A book that gives information about the place you are visiting
1. Bags and cases that you carry with you when you are travelling.
2. A building where you can get onto an aircraft, bus, or ship.
3. A visit to and around a place, area, or country.
4. The area at an airport where they check your ticket and take your luggage.
5. The place in a hotel where people go when they arrive.
6. A comfortable bus used to take groups of people on journeys.
7. A building where you can look at important objects.
8. To sit or lie in the sun so that your skin becomes brown.  
\9. To pay to use something for a short time.

II.  Now use some of this vocabulary to write about a trip you have made, or a trip you would like to make.  Try to use a variety of different grammar tenses, and remember that the typical word sequence in English is:  Subject + verb+ object + place + time.  

Example:  If I could travel anywhere, I'd go to the Amazon.  After checking in at the airport, I'd text all my friends, and tell them I was on my way.  Before doing anything else, I'd find a guide to take me on the most exciting adventure of my life.  I wouldn't visit museums, or spend time by the pool sunbathing.....

III.  When you finish writing, check to make sure you have used the correct form for plurals and singulars, third person, past tense, and continuous forms.  Make sure you use 'a' before singular nouns and 's' for plurals.  If sentences are very long, break them into to separate sentences.  Make sure the word order is correct.  Read it very carefully and try to catch your typical mistakes before sending it to the teacher.

Dream about Australia (writing exercise)

What do I think the most interesting destination would be? I should answer this question in Delia’s class, which is dedicated to advance writing.  Okay, I think the second conditional could be suitable for describing my dream.  If I had enough time and money, I’d visit Australia. I’d travel when it was wintertime in my country, and go to a place where it was summertime.  I always read a guide before visiting a new destination.  I can imagine what I’d do after landing in Melbourne.  The first thing would be to use my English to talk to a taxi driver, and then to the hotel manager when I arrived at my accommodation.  I know the receptionists speak English, even in non English speaking countries.  I know that the Australian accent

What is the most interesting destination for me which I’d want to visit?
I should answer for(without for) this question in the( without ‘the’) Delia’s class which was (is) dedicated to advanced writing.
Ok. I think the second conditional could be suitable for describing my dream.
If I could time and money enough I’d visit Australia.  If I had enough time and money, I’d visit Australia.

I’d buy a ticket for time when the winter in my country and fly to summer’s time. I’d travel when it was wintertime in my country, and go to a place where it was summertime.

Always when I’m going to visit new place I read some books about this destination. I always read a guide before visiting a new place. And it is necessary to bye a guide.

I can imagine now what I should do when I’ll be landed to Melbourne. The first one I’ll try use my English and speak with taxi-driver, with hotel’s manager when I’ll arrive to hotel. I know that even in not English speakers countries all people who serve on reception speak in English. I know that Australian’s accent is different from American and British English. I wonder if I can understand Australian people.

Ok. Now I can look around and choose sightseeings which I should observe. What is the cheapest and fastest way to know places around us? Yes, I can ride on the coach. Or I could hire a car.

I interested in a nature and culture that fabulous country. And I keep this dream to visit that place in the future.


Sunday, September 9, 2012

Holiday in Aqua sol Sun Palace Hotel (island Rhodes, Greece)
A few months ago we discussed  writing travelogues and reviews in the class (small description, which could be help people to choose hotel for the holiday).
And now I have an opportunity to share this review with people as an exercise for improving writing skills before I post it to  the site
We had a two week holiday in Aqua sol Sun Palace Hotel (island Rhodes, Greece) in August 2012. It is located in the village Faliraki where you can find a lot of tourist shops, cafes and restaurants, bars and clubs.
Most of the tourists there came from the UK.
The size of the hotel is not so big. We stayed in the room with two bedrooms and a  patio. It was in good working condition.
There is a big and comfortable hall and two restaurants, one of which has an a la carte menu.
The swimming pool is not deep and is rather small. Sometimes it was difficult to find free places near the swimming pool. There was an entertainment oriented mostly for English and German tourists. Two times a day you can play some games there such as as water-polo and volleyball. Sometimes it was difficult to swim due to the large number of people in the swimming pool.
The entertainment in the evening is rather simple. There is a mini disco for kids at 9.00 p.m., then Bingo and a show at 22.00.
The price for Wi-fi is 4 euro per hour.  The cost to rent a safe is 40 euro for two weeks.  
The usual menu for breakfast consists of flakes with milk and eggs with bacon, greek salad, tomatoes, yogurt, cookies, soft drinks, fruits (watermelons, pears, apples, bananas, grapes), tea and coffee. Four stars is a right mark for this hotel.
The sea is amazing! It is really nice and quiet, and the water is very clean and warm. During our holiday there were no waves in the sea at all.  The distance  from the hotel to the sea is near 300 meters. There is a sandy ground in the sea. All the beaches in Rhodes belong to municipalities and are free. Tourists get to the beaches from hotels on the buses or by foot.  
There are about 300 sunny days per year. Western and Eastern shores of the island are different from each other.  The sea on the Western side is suitable for windsurfing, and the Eastern side is better for a quiet rest
Tourists can visit the city Rhodes on the regular bus. It takes only 20 minutes to get there and costs 2.2 Euro for 1 person. We shouldn’t use abbreviation “Old town” for the medieval district of the city because other parts of Rhodes could be older. We should be aware that we are in the centre of the ancient World and our guides memorized it telling fabulous Greek’s myths.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Tour from Second to the First Life
In this event everyone who came should describe place where they are live now according this plan:
1. Everybody write in the chat the place where they live.
2. We created Google Map with locations.
3. We loaded account and share his desktop (Google Map) with everybody.
5. We moved to Hong Kong in place which could be casual or definite dot could be chosen by speaker.
Everybody received this notecard:
Tell us about your city and show it.
1. What is the place around us.
2. Have you been here?
3. Describe the city.
4. Describe the architecture of your city.
5. What are some historical places in your city?
6. What are some tourist attractions in your city?
7. What are the major problems in your city?
8. Where's the most popular area in your city?
9. What is the most important part of a city?
10. What part of this city do you like the best?
11 If we could move to this place in Real Life which direction should we choose. Show us your lovely places in the city.

Using Google Map and free service for sharing desktop we traveled from one place to another and listened wonderful stories from participators of this event. We could see below their “stories in pictures”

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Four epochs of the photographs

We received this week the news that Kodak has filed for bankruptcy protection, marking the demise of the analogue era. This event is a good opportunity to remember the history of the photographs. We discussed this subject in the class of Dart Jarman which was dedicatedto current events. I prepared four photos for discussion, which would represent four epochs of photography.
Let’s look:

This photos were taken 100 years ago by Sergey Prokudin-Gorsky and look as if they were taken yesterday. Between 1907 and 1915, Prokudin-Gorsky transported his photography-equipment in a special darkroom rail car. He printed the color photos by a method of his own invention.

The mid-20th century was an era of black-white photos for ordinary people and color photos for the professional photographers (look the famous photo of the Beatles). I remember this time. I made my photos using special equipment and chemicals in the darkroom. I stored my black-white photos in photo-albums. I couldn't imagine that doing color photos would be so easy thanks to Kodak’s technology.

This photo was taken in Copenhagen by me using a simple camera and was printed in a service-centre which used Kodak technology. We kept photos like this in albums. We admired the colors. It was only Kodak’s technology which allowed us to keep our memories in color. Thank, you, Kodak! But the times changed and today is epoch of digital photos.

This photo was made by my daughter on the shore of the Atlantic Ocean in Portugal. If it was made 50 years ago it would have been a model photo for a magazine or for exhibition. This process so simple today. We have thousands of photo files in our collection. We don’t print them.
It was great of course. But we can remember a wonderful company which gave us the ability to make our own COLOR photos.
Thank you Kodak, your photos stay in the our memories...

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Fill up vocabulary with Fran McMinnar in Airport Woes

Fran knows how stressful it can be to travel during the holiday season. Has your flight been delayed? Has an airline ever lost your luggage?
It happened with me this summer and I shared my travel story with Fran. Yes, I really lost my luggage when I arrived to Sicily. In fact, everybody in the plane lost the luggage. And I remembered about this adventure in the class.

I was happy before I had lost my luggage. I had three pieces of luggage: two suitcases and briefcase.
We should know types of luggage:
Suitcase: a large rectangular case with a handle for carrying clothes and possessions while travelling.
Rolling suitcase: a suitcase with wheels and a handle to make it easier to move.
Rucksack: a large bag used to carry things on your back, used especially by walkers and climbers.
Holdall: a small case used for carrying clothes and personal things when travelling.
Briefcase: a rectangular case, used especially for carrying business documents.
Luggage Labels - to identify your luggage
Padlock - to lock you luggage

So. We descended from the plane and went through some aircraft to the airport.

We came to the baggage carousel and waited for our luggage. After one-hour waiting we understood that our luggage had been lost by staff of our air company.
We went to the “Lost and found department”. Our teacher asked us to describe our luggage.

The young lady (Oxana) who traveled that flight described her luggage: carrycot (or pram).

Our teacher recommended us to claim compensation because we had to buy some new clothes.

What are reasons could be if your flight delayed?
It delays due to the weather or technical problems.
Information about it we can see on the information desk.

What should we do in the check in area?
We can weigh there our luggage and receive the luggage tag.
What places can we choose when we ask for a boarding pass?
As usual three options: aisle, window, centre seats.

After we had left our luggage we walked to the security area.

The staff asked us to put our hand baggage into the trays for checking by x ray machine.
There are some things which are illegal for traffic like the guns, liquid, flammable or an aerosol

For private watching we should took our shoes and a metal belt off.
When this procedure was over we went up the escalator.

In the zone of duty-free we can buy lots of travel products such as an electric adapters.

We could choose travel adapters with two pin plugs or three pin plugs.

If we are in the big airport the best way to come to your gateway is to stay on the moving walkway.

And the last place for our class was the hall for air traffic control. Usually, we don’t have access for visiting this place in real life but we can visit this place in English city.
It might be a subject for the next lesson …