What a welcome!
I’d like to thank everyone for the warm welcome you’ve given me as the new teacher blogger. It’s really nice to e-meet all of you and your comments and questions have given me lots of encouragement already. I’d also like say a special ‘Hello’ to Naheed, our new student blogger.
Naheed, I can see you have a very strong grasp of the English language. In fact, your English is so good I think I can probably take the rest of the month off. Just kidding! I can see that you’ve been studying English for a long time and make only minor mistakes. Well done to you!
Today’s blog had my mouth watering! It is possible to get mangoes here in the UK, but they’re pretty expensive as they are imported. Also, I don’t think they can ever taste as good as mangoes straight off the tree. Just a note about the verbs you use to describe flavours, Naheed. In your delicious description of how to make mango sorbet, you say ‘If it feels sour’, and later ‘it should not feel very sweet’. We use the verb taste when we want to talk about flavours, and the verb feel when we want to talk about things we can touch. This is just a small point – I can still understand perfectly what you mean.
In your first blog, I particularly liked your use of the phrase ‘All’s well that ends well’. But can I make one small correction? This phrase always starts with ‘All’s’, not ‘All is’. This phrase basically means ‘everything will work out well in the end’ and I think I can tell from this that you have a pretty positive attitude!
‘All’s well that ends well’ is actually the name of a Shakespeare comedy. Did you know that Shakespeare coined hundreds of words and phrases that we still use to this day? Some of these words and phrases have the exact same meaning they had when he wrote them hundreds of years ago, and some have changed in meaning slightly. Naheed, you look to me like you’re a student who can handle being thrown in at the deep end, so I wonder whether you can tell me what the current-day meaning of the following words and phrases is – all of them were coined by Shakespeare:
· it smells to high heaven
· full circle
· one fell swoop
· strange bedfellows
· the world’s my oyster
And if you’re feeling really clever, I wonder if you can work one of these into your next blog? Ooooh, aren’t I nasty? I bet you don’t like me so much any more!
Actually, Shakespeare leads me nicely onto your comments and questions about my first-ever blog. Melissa from China wanted to know how to understand the meaning of Shakespeare. This is no mean feat, as Shakespearian language is tricky to understand because it was written so long ago and is very different from current-day language. One thing to bear in mind though is that Shakespeare’s plays were written to be watched, not read. You know, it is much easier to understand what someone means if you can see their face, their gestures and their expression, as well as hear what they are saying. I wonder, is it possible for you to watch a DVD of the Shakespeare you are reading? If you can see the actors and their expressions, it will certainly help you.
Diema from Bulgaria wanted to know what the phrase ‘Yours, very femininely’ means. Sorry, Diema. This was just me being daft! Because I had told you all about me being female and not male, this was just a light-hearted way to end my blog (feminine means ‘having female characteristics’). I expect you’ll get used to my bad jokes over the next few weeks.
Phu of the Netherlands says she’s surprised I like living in the countryside. Maybe I can explain, Phu. First, I'm not that young (I’m 34)! And secondly, I have lots of pets, and I think animals prefer living in the countryside to living in a city. Maybe I can tell you a bit more about my pets in my future blogs, if you are interested.
I’m off to church a little later today. No, I not getting married! I have to go to a rehearsal for the christening of my little niece, baby Sophie. I’ve been asked to be godmother, so the rehearsal is to make sure I know what to do. Actually, I haven’t got a clue what to do as I’ve never been a godmother before, but I guess the most important thing is not to drop the baby! The actual christening is tomorrow, so I’ll tell you all about it in my next blog.
Enjoy your weekends!
If you have a strong grasp of something, you understand it well.
to take time off means to have a rest or go on holiday
Just kidding! You can use this exclamation if you want to say you’re joking about something. It’s very informal.
The verb to coin means to invent. It is commonly used when talking about new words and phrases.
If I throw you in at the deep end, it means I give you something difficult to do, without providing any help.
Ooooh! This is a natural exclamation. You can use it to express a range of emotions like surprise, pain, joy and shock.
If something is no mean feat, it’s difficult to do.
daft means ‘silly’. It’s good to be daft sometimes.
Something that is light-hearted is ‘playful’.
I’m off – this is an informal way of saying ‘I’m going’.
A christening is a formal ceremony in church when a child is given its name.
godmother – according to my dictionary, a godmother ‘represents a child at its baptism’. I think basically I’m supposed to be a good influence – I’ll let you know if this is right!
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