3.en.111 twenty-four questions about food and some new words

You must be very busy finding out how much food you’ll need to feed a family. Probably, you’ll be surprised when you sort out how much money you’ll need. A good way to go about that could be to check with your parents, they surely have got experience at making ends meet.  

However, today I want you to look at food and eating habits in a different way: practising questions. 

I have a list of questions for you about food. Some of them are very easy to answer, while you’ll need to put some thought into it to answer others. Brunchpot-luck, fishbonepizza topping,  are some of the words you’ll be familiar with after answering these 24 questions

  1. Do you ever skip breakfast? If so, how often and why?
  2. Do you like trying new foods? What was your latest discovery?
  3. How often do you/your parents go shopping for food? do you go with them?
  4. Does your family have any special recipes that are passed down from generation to generation? Which one?
  5. Have you ever eaten something that made you ill?
  6. Do you have any food allergies?
  7. Do you use spices in your meals? Which one is your favourite?
  8. What’s your favorite snack?
  9. Are you worried about your calorie intake?
  10. Do you like deep fried food?
  11. Are there any foods that you wouldn’t eat as a child that you eat now?
  12. Do you eat fruit every day?How many pieces as an average?
  13. Do you think fast food, soda and sweets should be sold in school cafeterias?What do you buy in the school cafeteria?
  14. Is there any food that you really dislike to eat?
  15. What kind of vegetables do you like? Can you name three?
  16. When was the last time you ate at a restaurant?
  17. Do you think obesity is becoming a problem in the United States and throughout the world?Why?
  18. Do you like brunch? Have you had it?
  19. Have you ever found something disgusting in your food?
  20. Have you ever been to a pot-luck dinner? What did you bring?
  21. Have you ever got a fishbone is caught in your throat? What did you do?
  22. What is your favorite pizza topping?
  23. What did you eat for lunch yesterday?
  24.  How long do  you/your parents spend in the kitchen every day proparing family meals?

HOMEWORK : Tuesday 31st May

Everyone must answer these 24 questions in their notebook. Then, each person will post the answer to one question to the blog. We’ll follow alphabetical order. Number 1 Izabela, and so on. Each person will be responsible for putting his/her question to other classmates and make a comment in the blog.

For example, if I was responsible for question nuber 1,  I would say: I sometimes skip breakfast in the morning, but not very often. I skip breakfast when I oversleep and I’m late for school. I asked 5 teachers from the English department and none of them  skip breakfast.

Finally, a big challenge for those of you who are web detective experts.

  • What country do you have to be in in order to taste Cris’s brunch? …  Can you guess?  I bet you’ll be surprised
  • Who is the “ethical chef” that explains what a pot.luck is?
  • Where is he from?
  • Why does he call himself “ethical”?

I have linked the images to the blogs, so it will not be difficult to find out. Let’s see who is the first one to answer. (4 extra bonus in irregular verbs)

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3.en.110 Egyptian diet: asking questions about the past

Josep, your History teacher, gave me this text about diet in ancient Egypt. We shall use it to compare what they used to eat and what they eat nowadays. Let’s see if you have learnt how to ask questions about the past.

Read the text and ask the questions that give the underlined words as an answer.


The people of ancient Egypt grew everything they needed to eat. The pharaoh got the peasants[1] to do the farm work on the rich lands.Most villagers were farmers.  Farmers lived in towns too, along with traders, other workers and their families.

Egyptians grew crops such as wheat, barley, vegetables, figs, melons, pomegranates and vines.The most important crop was grain. The ancient Egyptians used grain to make bread and beer. Grain was the first crop they grew after floods. Once the grain was harvested they grew vegetables such as onions, cabbages, beans and lettuce. Farmers planted fruit trees and vines.

Every June, the Nile flooded. This was known as the flooding season. During this time the farmers mended  tools or made new ones.

Ancient Egyptians had simple farming tools such as hoes[2], rakes[3], sickles [4]and ploughs[5]. They had both hand ploughs and ones pulled by oxen. The ploughs were used to turn the soil.

The majority of the tools were made entirely out of wood, or a combination of wood and stone, however, some copper tools have also been found, indicating that they had some metal tools.

[1] Agricultores; [2]Azadas;[3] Rastrillos; [4] Hoces; [5] Arados

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3.en.109 We learn much better if we collaborate: Google docs is working. Under construction

Paula, Marina, Marga, Noé, Jhazmín, Joan, Ariadna and Sergio have already done their work: a review and a comment on the listening page ELLLO. Well done!

I’m happy that you are learning to collaborate and to share your findings. I’ve cut and pasted parts of  the Google document that is under construction. I’ts a good thing to be under construction, it means you are all collaborating to improve it and to make it better.

It will remind you of your work. I have highlighted in red the spelling and grammar mistakes so you can correct them. I also think it would be a good idea to include the translation of the new words you have learnt. It will help  your classmates.

Read what your classmates have previously written in order not repeat the same mistakes. For instance, in this document, check the spelling of the word RECOMMEND, it is written with double MM. Also some subjects, IT or THEY, are missing. 

3.en.108 Expenditure on food: let’s have a look around the world

While you are working with your group making up your list of the necessary food to feed a family of four for a week, I would like you to reflect on how different  food expenditure is at world level.

Peter Manzel is a famous photographer. He and his wife, Faith D’Aluisio, a writer,  travelled around the world taking photographs of different families. They asked families to pose next to the food they ate on an average week. They also calculated the money spent. The result was a wonderful book “Hungry Planet”, which will help us reflect, among other things,  on our eating habits. The images displayed in this post were taken from this book.

To begin with, have a look at the Ahmed family of Cairo. We have been talking about the Mediterranean diet, haven’t we?

  1. Have a look at the food displayed on the table.
  2. Can you compare it with the list you are making?
  3. Can you see any major differences?
  4. Similarities?
  5. What about the family? Is it similar to a Spanish family?
  6. What about the money spent on food per week?

Here follows a power point I found in slide share with photos taken from Peter Menzel’s book. You will see different families, as well as their food expenditure per week. Also, each slide includes information about each  family’s favourite dish.

In the second part of the power point, you’ll be able to take a glance at  members of the family preparing their food, as well as different markets, supermarkets and kitchens. You’ll be surprised, I’m sure. We shall look at it together in class.

There are 25 families, from 25 different countries. If we leave out the Ahamed family, we have 24 families left. So, guess what?

Each of you will be responsible for one family. You will follow the order in the power point

Izabela will be responsible for the Ukita family, of Japan; Alvaro the Manzo family, of Sicily, Italy; Ariadna the Aboubakar family of Chad; Marga the Al Haggan family of Kwait; Miquel the Revis family, of North Carolina in the USA; Joan Sebastià the Casales family of Cuernavaca in Mexico; Pau Campomar,the Dong family of Beijing in China; Marina, the Sobczynscy family of Konstancin-Jeziorna in Poland; Andrea, the Ayme family of Tingo in Ecuador; Paula, the Caven Family of California, USA;Ritish, the Batsuuri family of Ulaanbataar in Mongolia; Jhazmin, the Bainton family, of Clingbourne, Great Britain; Silvia, the Namgay family of Shingkhay village in Bhutan; Sergio, the Melander family of Bargteheide in Germany; Josep,the Browns family of River view, Australia; Noé, the Mendozas of Todos Santos in Guatemala; Maria, the Kuttan -Kasses of Erpeldange in Luxembourg; Pau Seguí, the Patkars of Ujjain in India; Marta, the Fernandez of Texas, USA; Paula Socias, the Natomos of Kouaourou in Mali; Alba, the Melansons of Iqualuit in Nunavut Territory, Canada; Vladis, the Moines of Montreuil in France; Andreu, the Madsens of Cap Hope in Greenland; Joan, the Celiks of Istambul in Turkey.

Find out:

  1. Position of the country in the map and its neighbouring countries
  2. Population
  3. Position of the city/village where your family lives. Try to use google earth
  4. Expenditure in food per week (Find out currency and convert it in dollars or euros)
  5. Number of people in the family
  6. Position of the country in the ranking by GDP (nominal) per capita
  7. Describe the family and the food displayed
In 2008, there was an exhibition in Madrid and Barcelona with photos from Peter Menzel’s book. You can still visit it on line. The information has been translated into Spanish and Catalan, so it will help you prepare your family presentation as well as the equivalent in euros. I include here the Ahmed family as an example. If you look at the top menu, you will see that you can choose and activate any of the three languages: Catalan, Spanish and English.
Here you can see the title of the online exhibition in Catalan: Planeta Afamat: allò que menja el món.


  • Pronunciation site to help you with names of countries and places.


  • World flag data base (includes basic facts about countries: population, currency, languages)


  • World maps (includes basic facts about continents)


  • Virtual exhibition from Caja Madrid on Peter Menzel’s photographs.


  • Peter Menzel’s web site. He is responsible for the great pictures and together with the texts written by his wife they have made this project possible.


3.en.107 Let’s get ready to feed a family of four for a week

This morning, we organized the groups for the Olivar Market outing. You  worked  making a list of the food you would need to feed a family of four during a week. Many of you were surprised at the amount of food that you would need to get. Well, here you can find help to learn how to say and pronounce different kinds of food in English.

  • Each one should learn 10 new words, with a native like accent.  Words connected with food, of course!
  • Do the exercises and post the words you’ve learnt to the blog.(Monday 30th)
  • Did your vocabulary improve after doing these exercises?

  1. http://www.languageguide.org/english/vocabulary/fruit/
  2. http://www.languageguide.org/english/vocabulary/vegetables/
  3. http://www.languageguide.org/english/vocabulary/food/
  4. http://www.eflnet.com/vocab/dictionary/veggies2.php
  5. http://www.eflnet.com/vocab/dictionary/fruit1.php
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3.en.106 listening: What did you do yesterday?

Next week, you morning breaks will depend on your knowledge of irregular verbs. In this post  I will give you some help to learn irregular verbs other than memorising them . Listening to verbs being used in conversations is another way to fix long lists in your brain.

ELLO is a great site with lots of listening (not very long) on all sorts of topics. The site provides a transcript (do no cheat, try to listen a couple of times before you check content) and  multiple choice tests. If you do one or two listenings per week, your understanding will improve and your knowledge of irregular verbs too.

My choice today will be a listening to give you extra practice understanding past tenses. Six different people with different English accents, answer the same question: What did you do yesterday?

  • Do the multiple choice quizz and post your comments to the blog.
  • Did you find the listening difficult?
  • Did it help you to learn verbs and past tenses?
  • On Monday, I will pose the same question to you: What did you do Yesterday?
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3.en.105 Objective:learning by heart this list of 50 irregular verbs before June

You know we hardly ever memorize lists of things. However, irregular verbs are quite hard to learn; there are many and  you need to put some effort until you used them without even thinking. It’s one of those things we have to MEMORIZE. So, let’s get started

MEMORIZE = LEARN BY HEART 50 Common  irregular verbs

Here follows a list of 50 very common verbs. Some of them you already know, but I’m sure not all of them. I’ve taken this document from http://www.perfect-english-grammar.com. You can follow the link and listen to these verbs being pronounced. I really recommend you to download the list and keep it in your English notebook. If any new irregular verbs appear, add them to the list. Also write the translation in Catalan and/or Spanish.

This is the link for the site

Do not forget to scroll to the very bottom of the page. You will find out a set of 4 exercises to practise the irregular verbs. Maybe for Monday you’ll have learnt the whole list.