Sunday, 15 December 2013


As teachers we are used to every kind of tests, and we often use them to assess our students; the matter is different when we have to be tested.

You might loose your confidence and be afraid of a failure, that could compromise your professional image.

If you find yourself in this condition, why don't you try to change your point of view and consider all that as a SERENDIPITY?

Informazioni su test B1 CLA Ca' Foscari

Il test computerizzato di Inglese B1 è suddiviso in quattro parti per una durata complessiva di 1 ora e 30 minuti. La durata di ogni prova è segnalata da un timer con conto alla rovescia.

La prova di ascolto (Listening Test) dura 30 minuti ed è composta da tre pagine.
In ogni pagina è presente un esercizio accompagnato da una breve descrizione della situazione comunicativa e da un file audio; il file può essere ascoltato 2 volte.
È necessario rispondere alle domande a scelta multipla selezionando la risposta corretta tra tre alternative proposte (a, b, c).

La prova di grammatica (Grammar Test) dura 25 minuti ed è composta da tre esercizi contenenti:
- 40 frasi da completare
- 5 frasi da completare inserite all’interno di un breve testo
- un blocco di 5 frasi da completare
È necessario scegliere gli elementi grammaticali corretti tra tre alternative proposte nei menu a tendina.

La prova di lessico (Vocabulary Test) dura 15 minuti ed è composta da:
- 10 frasi da completare
- 10 frasi da completare inerenti temi specifici
È necessario scegliere la parola o l’elemento grammaticale corretto tra tre alternative proposte nei menu a tendina.

La prova di lettura (Reading Test) dura 20 minuti ed è composta da due esercizi relativi ad un brano ciascuno:
- il primo brano è un articolo giornalistico accompagnato da 5 domande a scelta multipla, che prevedono la scelta della risposta corretta tra tre alternative proposte (a, b, c)
- il secondo brano è un testo di cultura generale seguito da 10 frasi per le quali è necessario decidere se sono vere o false.

Elementi grammaticali

Per entrare a fare una simulazione del test basta registrarsi a questo link: 
(se non si apre copiate la stringa dell'indirizzo e incollatela nel settore indirizzo del browser).

Per registrarvi selezionale la voce 
Utenti non rientranti in altre categorie".

Esempi di test di accertamento B1 (Università di Firenze)

Esercizi di comprensione scritta online
  1. Esempio 1
  2. Esempio 2
File pdf degli stessi esercizi
  1. Esempio di comprensione scritta 1
  2. Esempio di comprensione scritta 2
Esercizi di grammatica online
  1. Esempio 1
  2. Esempio 2
File pdf degli stessi esercizi
  1. Esempio di grammatica 1
  2. Esempio di grammatica 2
Esercizi di ascolto online
File pdf degli ascolti
  1. Esempio di ascolto 1
  2. Esempio di ascolto 2

Descrizione delle competenze del livello B1

Comp. Scritta e/o OraleVerifica la capacità di capire un testo di media lunghezza che presenta informazioni in linguaggio standard o professionale (testo informativo).Verifica la capacità di capire i punti essenziali di un discorso articolato in modo relativamente chiaro, su argomenti inerenti l'attività accademica e la sfera professionale.
Espr. Scritta e/o OraleVerifica la capacità di comporre un testo di tipo descrittivo o espositivo in lingua standard riguardante argomenti relativi ad esperienze e progetti di studio o di lavoro.Verifica la capacità di elaborare un componimento orale di tipo descrittivo o espositivo su argomenti relativi ad esperienze e progetti di studio o di lavoro.

Friday, 6 December 2013


After a long silence I'm back. Some of my students are supposed to be back for a quick session of English before their exam. That's why I'm here again with some proposals for them.

I want to start with a video about Nelson Mandela, a great icon of Peace

From this link you can find a useful exercise for you to take the most out of this activity:
you can read the script of the video, while waching it (click on "Transcript").
Moreover if you double-click on each word of the text you can get the definition. Useful and time-saving.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Are you interested in technology?

Here are some technology news for you to read

Enjoy reading and keep in touch

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Friday, 20 September 2013

Never tell me that you can't!

Sorry for stopping writing for a while, but some days there's neither energy nor time left.

Anyway I'm back with something I found in the web. I think it's one of those things I call "wonders from the web".

I think that if I had had this kind of open sources in the past when I was learning English, I would have learnt more, saving both money and time!!

That's what I mean in the title of this post: never tell me that you can't learn English, because nowadays your statement can't be true! 

I tell you what I'm so enthusiastic about: it is a database with a lot of videos in it, graduated for different levels of competence and for each video there is a range of activities you can do to make your vision more profitable!

In order to start watching videos you have to register (you can do it through Facebook or giving an email address and adding a password)

Select your preferences: you can choose from three levels (beginner, intermediate and advanced), different topics, different focuses (vocabulary or pronunciation) and find which videos are more suitable for your learning needs and interests.
For each video you have four different activities and you are marked on your performance (A,B,C or D)

Have a go! See for yourself!
Bye :)

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Would you like to talk to someone (in English)?

 I very often hear my students saying: "I can read English, I can understand English but I've got some problems with speaking".

Practising is the best way to improve this ability, but if you are not in an English speaking country, it is not so easy to find someone to talk to, and, in the event you find somebody, you have to cope with your being afraid of making mistakes: it often happen to adults.

Today I would like to suggest a way to speak English with someone at your level of competence and with your same motivation: the web can offer the chance you are looking for! 

It's a network of teachers and students from around the world, and they all want to speak English. You only have to register and follow instructions. You need to have a Skype contact and a headset or other device that enables two-way conversation.

If you don't have a clue about the topics you could speak about, they suggest you some possible speaking tasks.

Click on the logo and start a new adventure. 

Have a good time with your new English speaking friends!

Friday, 6 September 2013

Found another collection of listening activities

Today, while looking for some materials for my lessons at school, I've come across a collection of listening activities:




  • SHORT VIDEOS (there's also the complete series called "Flatmates" from BBC videos)

You find more suggestions about the topic of listening on a previous post I added a few weeks ago
Keep in touch with English (and remember the password for this blog: 
"Never give up!!")

Friday, 23 August 2013

Make good art!!

... Works produced by human creative skill and imagination...      A unique human gift. 
How can a person express his or her own deep feelings and make up something, that can overtake time and space? Difficult to explain, even in your mother tongue.

How many art expressions do you know?


When you live next to someone, who wants to dedicate his or her life to art, it often happens that, at first, you can be very doubtful about the possibility of making a living out of it.
On the other hand, we have to thank all artists, who took the risk and enriched our world with beauty.
Watch this video and get involved by this man's energy... It's contagious! 
Neil Gaiman addresses the University of the Arts Class of 2012.
A very inspiring speech for any artist and everyone who hopes to be creative and successful. It's quite a long video and not that easy, but believe me, it's worthy! 

Let's finish with a quote from Pablo Picasso: 
"The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls".

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Worth trying!!

Do you know the LLP, the Lifelong Learning Programme of the European Community? 
If you are a European teacher or student you probably answered: yes!
Do you want to undertake a professional development course, maybe a full immersion in the English language? 
Every year there are several deadline dates for sending your applications...
What I would like to suggest today is an In-service training for teachers: you could get a grant for taking part to a training course up to 6 weeks.
Why not taking a chance before the next deadline?

Here you can find all National Agencies

I know that for Italy the next deadline is on 17/09/13 (for training activities taking place from 1/1/2014 to 30/4/2014)
 /2013_moduli_llp/COM_GRU_IST_Applicants Guide_2013 _1_.pdf Guida 2013 alla compilazione delle Eforms.pdf 
/2013_moduli_llp/IST COM 2013 Istruzioni per la compilazione del budget.pdf Guida alla compilazione del budget Formazione in Servizio 2013.pdf 
If you are not Italian, don't worry: around that date there should be deadlines for the other countries as well.
I know that some of you have another question: where am I supposed to go and what course am I supposed to attend? 

Sometimes it happens that you get an invitation to a course, but if you are not so lucky you can look for offers in the Comenius Training database:

You can select a language course in English...
... and that's it! you will find a long list of possibilities!
Good luck!!

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Stereotypes and misunderstanding

Our world seems to become smaller as time passes by, and some places are getting very "international".
Are ideas about people changing at the same speed or are stereotypes still there with all their strength?
In my opinion a good way to go beyond them is to find the funny side of this matter.  :)

Sunday, 11 August 2013

Am I ready for a PET certification?

If you are a full time student, you are probably ready for any exam as far as you decide to study for it.

The less time you have for studing (because you are working, you've got a family and you are living the busiest time ever!), the more doubts you have about your level of "English reliability".

I am thinking of my experience: I didn't have the possibility of studing English full time, and when I started learning it, I was already working as a full time teacher. It's not the best condition you could face, but, if I did succeed, I stronlgly believe you can do the same!

In any case, if you are still doubtful, a good idea could be starting with a test about your A2 competence concerning grammar and vocabulary.

You could face two different situations:
  • you don't have any problems neither with grammar nor with vocabulary. That's a good starting point for concentrating just on B1 preparation, and stopping you from having doubts;
  • you are not satisfied with the results, and you are aware of some gaps in your previous preparation (it's not your fault, but you couldn't find enough time for English), that's not to bad! If you need a refreshment about your A2 English, you can go through the Reach your A2 blog and maybe find some useful materials.
In any case remember: never give up English!! :)

Monday, 5 August 2013

Looking for a holiday destination?

If you have enough money, time and a passport, why don't you fly to...


Do a reading comprehension activity to find out more about your destination...
If statues could talk

...and then go!

Have a nice journey!

Friday, 2 August 2013

August news - The international Beatles week

Did you know that the international Beatles week is taking place in Liverpool from the 21st to the 27th of August?
Read the brochure to find out more

Why don't you watch a video about the history of the most famous pop group of all time?

You can also complete a multiple choice listening comprehension quiz about the video.
Here comes the sun

If you like singing, I selected a couple of songs for you...

A day in the life

Monday, 29 July 2013

New addings

Today I have added a new page about vocabulary enrichment: it is just at the beginning, but it will slowly grow up.

Moreover for those of you, who needs some more revision from A2 level, I'm working on a new blog, and have added right now a link from this blog (look at the list of links on your right, when you are on the blog page).

Leave me a feedback/comment, and let me know if the blog is working. Bye

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

A very special event!

 We are witnesses to a historical event! 

So why don't you try a multiple choice reading quiz about the birth of Britain's royal baby?

Click on the pram and find out more