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The English Language Workshop

Dear Readers,

We present the fifth issue of The English Language Workshop, which contains a variety of grammar and vocabulary practice. The English Language Workshop has two main objectives. Firstly, it serves as a review of the major grammar structures and vocabulary that you have learnt so far. Secondly, the aim of the tests is to help you prepare for exams, including the Cambridge First Certificate in English. You may check your knowledge of English grammar and vocabulary individually or in the classroom.

Paradise in East Sussex

For a real taste of old-fashioned England, there's no better place to visit than Rye on (or near enough) the East Sussex coast.

"Jutro jedziemy do Rye'u," I said to my wife (who is Polish, by the way). "Do raju?" she asked. Then I realised that to Poles the name of this little town could well be confused with Paradise. I had never been there before, so I couldn't say whether or not Rye might indeed be "raj". But as it turned out, the little town not far from Hastings came surprisingly close.

Irish Sports

Gaelic games are the national indigenous sports of Ireland. Gaelic football and hurling are the most popular sports while camogie, handball and rounders also come under the auspices of the GAA (Gaelic Athletic Association).

Are Computer Games Good For You?

The Sony Playstation 2 and Microsoft's X-Box sold like hot cakes worldwide this Christmas as the popularity of computer games continues to grow. According to recent research, three out of four students play computer games for at least two hours a week in the US. But what are the psychological effects of the games on the player? Do violent games make kids more violent? And does sitting around wiggling your joystick have any educational value? Deji Akala ways up the facts.

The Paperless Classroom

Mr. Deji Akala found us through our Internet pages. He told us an interesting story of how he had become a leader of a discussion group for EFL teachers in Central and Eastern Europe. He suggested four subjects about computers which we thought would be interesting for our readers. Here is the fourth part.

Report from a Bloodless War

We all know of the many wars and revolts in Southeast Asia that have resulted in millions of innocent victims. The war that I intend to tell you about is ruthless, too, even if it causes no bloodshed.

The war we are now witnessing is between two languages, French and English. The language of Shakespeare and Churchill is the aggressor, needless to say, whereas French, comfortably established in the region for many years, fights to survive against the odds.

The Africans

Contrary to general belief, Africa is neither a monolithic nor a monocultural society. There are three mainly Negroid groups - West African, Sudanic and Bantu, scattered all over the huge continent. These main groups are further divided into subgroups. For example, the Yoruba people of southwestern Nigeria, who are the second-largest African tribe (population: about 20 million) are made up of at least 25 subtribes each with distinct customs, traditions and cultural practices.

A PC Fairytale: Three Pigs and a Big Bad Wolf

- a politically correct fairy tale

Letters to the Professor

I would like to ask you a question on how to use a noun in the role of an adjective in front of another noun. The point at issue here is the number of the first noun. Let me give you an idea what I have on my mind. I have many a time come across the phrase "profit percentage" on one hand, and "profits percentage" on the other. Is there any significant difference between these two expressions? If so, what is it?

The Art of Bad Taste: The British Tabloid

12 million people everyday read The Sun newspaper in Britain. Infamous for it's page three topless models, its obsession with the private lives of the rich and famous, and its innovative way with the English language, Britain's most popular newspaper is just one of many tabloid titles that you can find at the newsagent's. But why are tabloids so popular in Britain?

Only Joking!

The Smiths were proud of their American family tradition. Their ancestors had arrived in America on the Mayflower. Their family included senators and Wall Street wizards.

They decided to compile a family history, a legacy for their children and grandchildren. They hired a fine author. Only one problem arose: how to handle great-uncle George, who had been executed in the electric chair. The author said he could handle the story tactfully.

The Right to Bear Arms.

Since the Columbine school massacre last year Americans have been asking themselves what the law can do to prevent such horror ever happening again. Has the time finally come to break with a tradition that many see as an integral part of the constitution?

Just who is St Andrew?

Everyone knows that St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland. But you may not be aware that up in heaven, Scotland, Wales and England are equally loved and watched over by their own patron saints.

Mini's Major Rebirth

The end of the millennium saw the end of the line for the world famous Mini, but where did it all begin? And will there be more than just the name and the memory to the Mini Cooper soon to be re-launchedby BMW?

End of a Decade, End of an Era

There won't be many waves of Volunteers before the Poles will have caught up...This will be one of the world's great and limited engagements. Poland will not need us for long. - E. Timothy Carroll, Peace Corps Country Director 1991-1994

Peace Corps: An American Adventure.

"It was a fantastic experience!" was the general consensus of the eight students who participated in a cultural exchange to California and Nevada in the USA.

For two weeks, from February 24 to March 9, 2000, a group of Polish high-school students lived with American host families, provided by Faith Lutheran High School in Las Vegas, Nevada. They had the opportunity to experience the daily lives and culture of their families, as well as share their own Polish culture.

Christmas Around the Globe

The Christmas holiday is among the world' s most widely celebrated festivals. Let' s take a look at some of our planet' s customs during this season of good cheer.

Business Ethics - a Contradiction in Terms?

"Business is business", "Time is money", - but is it right that "Anything goes"?

"Where there's muck there's brass" is an old northern English expression. It simply means that people will make money where there are raw materials - dirty, of course - such as coal. But what about the expression: "Where there's ethics there's brass"? It doesn't have quite the same ring. If such expressions are any guide, Anglo-Saxon societies clearly tend to think of business as a necessary but essentially dirty activity.

What a Wonderful World.

Many students take a "gap year" between finishing school and starting university. Many go and work in another country and get some experience of the world outside the classroom. Prince Harry is no exception. He is spending a few months in Australia and is working on a sheep farm in Queensland as a jackaroo - a farm labourer. On a 39,000-acre farm in somewhere called Tooloobilla, Harry is rolling up his sleeves and helping put the sheep through the sheepdip.

Irish Quotes

Continuing our Irish theme, here is a selection of quotations from a few great men of the Emerald Isle. No doubt you'll be familiar with some of them - perhaps you've even thought the same thing yourself.

I always pass on good advice. It is the only thing I ever do with it. It is never of any use to oneself. - Oscar Wilde

Take care to get what you like or you will be forced to like what you get. - George Bernard Shaw

The intellect of man is forced to choose
Perfection of the life, or of the work. - W.B. Yeats