sexta-feira, 30 de abril de 2010


Historical antecedents

Mother's Day

This article is about several worldwide days celebrating motherhood.

A homemade cake, one of many ways a family might celebrate Mother's Day, or Mothering Sunday.

The modern Mother's Day is celebrated on various days in many parts of the world, most commonly in May, though also in March, as a day to honor
mothers and motherhood. In the United States it was nationally recognized as a holiday in 1914 after a campaign by Anna Jarvis. In some countries, it follows the old tradition.
Lamberts thought this day emerged from a custom of mother worship in
ancient Greece, which kept a festival to Cybele, a great mother of Greek gods. This festival was held around the Vernal Equinox around Asia Minor and eventually in Rome itself from the Ides of March (15 March) to 18 March.
ancient Romans also had another holiday, Matronalia, that was dedicated to Juno, though mothers were usually given gifts on this day.
In Europe there were several long standing traditions where a specific Sunday was set aside to honor motherhood and mothers such as
Mothering Sunday. Mothering Sunday celebrations are part of the liturgical calendar in several Christian denominations, including Anglicans, and in the Catholic calendar is marked as Laetare Sunday, the fourth Sunday in Lent to honour the Virgin Mary and your "mother" church (the main church of the area). Historians think that children who served in houses were given a day off on that date so they could visit their families. The children would pick wild flowers along the way to place them on the church or to give them to their mother[
International Women's Day was celebrated for the first time in 28 February 1909, in the US By that time Anna Jarvis had already begun her national campaign in the US, so it wouldn't be an antecedent but a contemporanian. It is now celebrated in many countries on March 8.
The "
Mother's Day Proclamation" by Julia Ward Howe was one of the early calls to celebrate Mother's Day in the United States. Written in 1870, Howe's Mother's Day Proclamation was a pacifist reaction to the carnage of the American Civil War and the Franco-Prussian War. The Proclamation was tied to Howe's feminist belief that women had a responsibility to shape their societies at the political level.
In 1912,
Anna Jarvis trademarked the phrases "second Sunday in May" and "Mother's Day", and created the Mother's Day International Association.
"She was specific about the location of the apostrophe; it was to be a singular possessive, for each family to honour their mother, not a plural possessive commemorating all mothers in the world.This is also the spelling used by U.S. President Woodrow Wilson in the law making official the holiday in the U.S., by the U.S. Congress on bills, and by other U.S. presidents on their declarations.
Common usage in English language also dictates that the ostensibly singular possessive "Mother's Day" is the preferred spelling, although "Mothers' Day" (plural possessive) is not unheard of.
As the US holiday was adopted by other countries and cultures, the date was changed to fit already existing celebrations honouring motherhood, like Mothering Sunday in the UK or the
Orthodox celebration of Jesus in the temple in Greece. In some countries it was changed to dates that were significant to the majority religion, like the Virgin Mary day in Catholic countries, or the birthday of the daughter of the Prophet Muhammad in Islamic countries. Other countries changed it to historical dates, like Bolivia using the date of a certain battle where women participated.
International history and traditions
In most countries, Mother's Day is a recent observance derived from the holiday as it has evolved in North America and Europe. When it was adopted by other countries and cultures, it was given different meanings, associated to different events (religious, historical or legendary), and celebrated in a different date or dates.
Some countries already had existing celebrations honoring motherhood, and their celebrations have adopted several external characteristics from the US holiday, like giving carnations and other presents to your own mother.
The extent of the celebrations varies greatly. In some countries, it is potentially offensive to one's mother not to mark Mother's Day. In others, it is a little-known festival celebrated mainly by immigrants, or covered by the media as a taste of foreign culture (compare the celebrations of
Diwali in the UK and the United States).
In the
Catholic Church, the holiday is strongly associated with reverencing the Virgin Mary
Hindu tradition it is called "Mata Tirtha Aunshi" or "Mother Pilgrimage fortnight", and it is celebrated in countries with Hindu population, especially in Nepal. It is celebrated on the new moon day in the month of Baisakh i.e. April/May
United States:
The United States celebrates Mother's Day on the second Sunday in May. In the 1880s and 1890s there were several attempts to establish a Mother's Day, but they didn't succeed beyond the local level. The holiday was created by Anna Jarvis in Grafton, West Virginia, in 1908 as a day to honor one's mother. Jarvis wanted to accomplish her mother's dream of making a celebration for all mothers, although the idea didn't take off until she enlisted the services of wealthy Philadelphia merchant John Wanamaker.She kept promoting the holiday until President Woodrow Wilson made it an official national holiday in 1914. The holiday eventually became so highly commercialized that many, including its founder, Anna Jarvis, considered it a "Hallmark Holiday", i.e. one with an overwhelming commercial purpose. Jarvis eventually ended up opposing the holiday she had helped to create. She died in 1948, regretting what had become of her holiday. In the United States, Mother's Day remains one of the biggest days for sales of flowers, greeting cards, and the like; it is also the biggest holiday for long-distance telephone calls.



In the United States today, telephones are an important part of people´s lives. But there are lot of choices to make before you can pick your own phone and say "Hello."
LOCAL CALLS: The first choice you have to make is about using a regular or cellular phone for your calls. Regular phone service from the local telephone company is cheaper - for a home phone it costs about $20 a month in most cities. With this service you can make all the local calls you want.
If you prefer to use a cellular phone for your local calls, you will pay more. This is because charges for cell phones are based on the amount of time the phone is used. You pay both to make and to get a call. With a cellular phone, the same $20 a month may only get 30 minutes of telephone service. After those 30 minutes you pay a charge for each extra minute. Of course, a cellular phone can be much more convenient, especially for someone like a doctor or a person who isn´t home much but needs to get important calls.
PERSONALIZED SERVICES: After you have thought about which kind of phone you want to use, you can choose the special services you want. There are many options, but one of the most popular ones is call waiting, where if someone calls you while you are talking on the phone, you can answer the new call while you are talking on the phone, you can answer the new call while the first person waits. There are other options too, and you pay a small extra monthly charge for each one you choose.
LONG DISTANCE: The last thing you need to think about is which long distance phone company you want to use. There are more than ten companies, including several large ones in the United States - Sprint, AT&T - and with each, you can choose different kinds of plans. Sometimes charges are the same all day long, and sometimes there are different charges for calls made at different times of the day. With some, the charges per minute go down the more long-distance calls you make.
Even after these choices, you may still have trouble using the phone. Like a friend told me: "We have call waiting at our house. When my husband and I want to make a call, we first have to wait for our 15-year-old daughter to get off the phone!"

DID YOU KNOW THAT... many American cities, the streets have numbers instead of names? This way, if you are on the 3rd Street, and want to go to 9th Street, you know you will have to walk six blocks. some American cities, such as New York, the words street and avenue are used interchangeably, the only difference being that streets run in one direction and avenues cross them? many American cities, the houses on the block between 1st and 2nd Streets are numbered from 101 up to 199; those on the block between 2nd and 3rd Streets are numbered 201 up to 299, and so on? This way, if you want to go to 1134E Monroe Street, you know that the house is located on the east part of Monroe Street, between 11th and 12th Streets.
...the principal streets of a city - those which carry the most traffic - are given such denominations as avenues, boulevards, turnpikes, highways, expressways, freeways and parkways?
...many highways, expressways, freeways and turnpikes have complete access control, that is, cars can only enter them at some specific places?

terça-feira, 27 de abril de 2010


Labor Day is a legal holiday that honors working people and the labor movement. It is celebrated on the first Monday of September throughout the United States, Puerto Rico, and Canada.
Two men have been credited with suggesting the celebration of Labor Day in the United States: Mathew Maguire, a machinist from Paterson, N.J., and Peter McGuire, a New York City Carpenter. Both played an important role in staging the first Labor Day parade in New York City in September 1882.
Nowadays Labor Day celebrations include parades and meetings by labor organizations, but for most people it is a day of rest and recreation. Occurring just before most of thr nation´s schools reopen, American families use the three-day weekend as a final summer vacation.

segunda-feira, 19 de abril de 2010



Complete the paragraph with was or were:

Alexander the Great (356-323 B.C.) --------- a great Greek military leader. His birthplace --------- Pella, the ancient capital of Macedonia. Alexander´s parents --------- Philip II, king of Macedonia, and Olympias, a princess of Epirus. His teacher -------- the philosopher Aristotle. As a king and general, Alexander --------- very popular with his soldiers. They ------
very loyal to him. By 323 B.C., countries from Turkey to Afghanistan ------- under his control. At the time of his death, Alexander ------- only 33 years old.

The facts below are false. Correct each one by rewriting it as a negative statement. Then use the word or prhase in parentheses to write a true affirmative statement.

Example: The pharaohs were generals. (kings)
The pharaohs weren´t generals. They were kings.

1. Cleopatra was a Persian general. (Egyptian queen)
2. Columbus was a lawyer. (explorer)
3. Picasso and Rembrandt were astronomers. (artists)
4. William Shakespeare was a French writer. (English)
5. Cervantes was an American inventor. (Spanish writer)
6. Marie Curie and Albert Einstein were doctors. (scientists)
7. Beethoven was a German king. (composer)

domingo, 18 de abril de 2010



1. Complete the sentences with: You, He, She, It, We and They.

  1. Mrs. Harris is a teacher. --------- is a good teacher.
  2. Juan is in the car. -----------is in the blue car.
  3. Mr. and Mrs. Welch are Americans. ---------- from New York.
  4. The chair is new. ---------- not old.
  5. You and your friend are new students. -------- are in my class.
  6. Derek and I are students. ---------- are in college.

2. Complete the paragraph with am, is, or are.

My name ------- Mike Goodrich. I ------ the president of Compugames. It------ an Internet videogame company. Our employees --------- from all over the world. I ------- from Seattle. Celia Rivera-------- the vice president of Compugames. She ------ from Puerto Rico. Ruth McMaster and Carol Cheng ---------- two new employees. Ruth ------ from new York, and Carol --------- Taiwan. Diego and Dana ------ our new trainees from Brazil.

3. Complete the sentences. Use subject pronouns and be contractions.

  1. Mr. Walsh is our computer technician. -------- from Canada.
  2. Compugames is a company. --------- in Seattle.
  3. Mark and Pete are new employees. -------- game designers.
  4. Ana and I are students. -------- from Mexico.
  5. Some employees are in college. ------- busy.
  6. My name is Hiro. --------- from Japan.
  7. Carol is at work. -------- a sales manager.
  8. You and Donna are new employees. -------- in my department.
  9. Rocket Race is our new video game. -------- fun!
  10. Our offices are on Jackson Street. -------- big.

Source: Grammar Sense

Susan Kesner Bland



This is a different way to work with songs; choose a song your students like, then cut it into lines, paragraphs or the like. Divide the class into groups of 5 to 10 students, play the song as many times as necessary so that your students will put the parts in order. You should help the students while they´re working.
If you prefer, you can stick the parts of the song around the classroom; divide the class into two groups and while they listen to the song they have to search for the sentences and stick them in the appropriate order.
After you can ask one of the students to write the lyrics on the board, and then the whole class can sing and translate it. You can also work with the grammar topics you´ve taught in the previous week etc.


Remember those walls I built
Well, baby they´re tumbling down
And they didn´t even put up a fight
They didn´t even make a sound
I found a way to let you in
But I never really had a doubt
Standing in the light of your halo
I got my angel now
It´s like I´ve been awakened
Every rule I had you breakin´
It´s the risk I´m taking
I ain´t never gonna shut you out
Everywhere I´m looking now
I´m surrounde by your embrace
Baby I can see your halo
You know you´re my saving grace
You´re everything I need and more
It´s written all over your face
Baby I can feel your halo
Pray it won´t fade away
I can feel your halo,
I can see your halo,
Hit me like a ray of sun
Burning through my darkest night
You´re the only one that I want
I´m addicted to your light
I swore I´d never fall again
But this don´t even feel like falling
Gravity can forget
To pull me back to the ground again

In the sites below you can find lots of activities with songs:


This is a different way to teach the imperative, your students will have a chance to see words they´ve learned used in different ways. It´s also a chance to taste a famous American cookie.

How to make chocolate chip cookies


2 1/4 cups flour 1 teaspoon of vanilla
1 teaspoon of baking soda 1 egg
1 teaspoon of salt 2 cups of chocolate chips
1 cup of soft butter (or break a bar of chocolate into
3/4 cup of sugar pieces)
3/4 cup of brown sugar


Turn on the oven to 375° Fahrenheit
Mix the sugars, butter and egg.
Add the flour, baking soda and salt, then mix.
Add the chocolate chips, then mix.

Put teaspoons of dough
onto a pan, 2 inches apart
Bake 8-10 minutes or until cookies are light brown.
Cookies will be a little soft.
Wait for a few minutes, then take them off of pan.
Now eat and enjoy them!

segunda-feira, 12 de abril de 2010


You´re on the right track now!

You´ve got it made.


That´s right!

That´s good!

You´re really working hard today.

You are really good at that.

That´s coming along nicely.

Good work!

I´m happy to see you working like that.

That´s much, much better!

Exactly right.

I´m proud of the way you worked today.

You´re doing that much better today.

You´ve just about got it.

That´s the best you´ve ever done.

You´re doing a good job.

That´s it!

Now you´ve figured it out.

That´s quite an improvement.


I knew you could do it.


Not bad.

Keep working on it.

You´re improving.

Now you have it!

You are learning fast.

Good for you!

Couldn´t have done it better myself.

Aren´t you proud of yourself?

One more time and you´ll have it.

You really make my job fun.

That´s the right way to do it.

You´re getting better every day.

You did it that time!

That´s not half bad.

Nice going.

You haven´t missed a thing!


That´s the way!

Keep up the good work.

That´s the best ever.

You´ve just about mastered it.


That´s better than ever.

Much better!


You must have been practicing.

You did that very well.


Nice going.

You´re really going to town.




That´s how to handle that.

Now that´s what I call a fine job.

That´s great.

Right on!

You´re really improving.

You´re doing beautifully!


Good remembering.

You´ve got that down pat.

You certainly did well today.

Keep it up.

Congratulations. You got it right.

You did a lot of work today.

Well look at you go.

That´s it.

I´m very proud of you.


I like that.

Way to go.

Now you have the hang of it.

You´re doing fine.

Good thinking.

You´re really learning a lot.

Good going.

I´ve never seen anyone do it better.

Keep on trying.