Thursday, December 28, 2006

Topic Specific Exercises

The topic this week in the IELTS preparation class is ENVIRONMENT. You can find many English exercises about the environment at The Web Language Lab. They also have exercises about other topics that we'll be studying about in the IELTS preparation course.

Take some time over the holiday and see how many of the exercises you can complete. When we return after the break we will continue with the topic GM foods (genetically modified). There's an exercise about that topic too: The Web Language Lab

Enjoy your holiday!

Saturday, December 16, 2006

A Childhood Memory – from one of our teachers

When I was a young girl my family lived in Illinois, in the United States. It was always very cold there during the winter. One winter my father decided that we would all go on an adventure. He told my mother to go to our schools and ask the teachers to give us enough schoolwork to keep us busy for a month and to pack our summer clothes. He said we’d be leaving in the early hours of the next morning for a trip to Florida.

My father put our boat on a trailer and attached it to the back of the car. Before dawn, he woke us up and all six of us piled into the car for the start of our journey. The weather was cold and it was snowing as we drove away from our house. It took us two days to drive to Florida with the weather becoming warmer with every mile that we drove south. Soon we were drinking freshly squeezed orange juice and wearing our summer clothes. The cold weather and snow were far behind us.

My father had given our small boat the name ATHA – it was an acronym of the names of the children in our family - Andrea, Therese (that’s me), Holly, and Anthony. It wasn’t very big, but we were comfortable. We launched the boat in Miami and spent about a month cruising around the various islands that make up the Florida Keys. During the day we swam in the warm, crystal clear waters and at night we slept on deck under the stars.

Around Christmas time we moored our boat at a dock were there was a filling station (petrol station) and a small grocery store. The owner of the grocery store lived behind his shop and inside his shop was a very large salt-water fish tank filled with beautiful fish. A navy research vessel was moored at the same dock, right behind our boat. The crew of their boat was especially friendly, and they had two unusual members of their crew – two harbour seals! These seals were specially trained to help with underwater research. We enjoyed watching the seals swim and play in the water near our boat. The crew of the boat had taught the seals to climb up on the research vessel using a special landing deck on the back made just for the seals. They were quite tame, but their handlers told us not to get too close as the seals occasionally became aggressive and might bite.

One morning we got up early and prepared our breakfast – bread, butter, jam, milk, cereal, coffee and juice. It had been a bit chilly that night and we had put up the canvas cover of the boat. We were all enjoying our breakfast when we heard something make a big spash! Then BOOM! The canvas covering of our boat began to collapse. I peeked out from behind the fabric and was surprised to see that one of the seals had decided to join us for breakfast!

The seal was wet and slid right down the canvas and onto the table! My mother grabbed the camera and got onto the dock to take some pictures. The seal was flopping, slipping and sliding all over! We managed to release the canvas cover and tried to help the seal. By now the seal was smeared in butter and jam, our breakfast was everywhere. In the midst of all the commotion, the crew of the research vessel came and rescued their seal. Our breakfast was ruined but none of us cared because, ‘How often do you have a seal land on your table?’

We cleared up the mess and spent the day exploring the surrounding area. We decided to return to the same dock to spend the night as it was Christmas Eve. We bought some food for dinner at the small grocery store and my sisters and brother and I looked at the colourful fish swimming in the tanks while my parents visited with the owner of the shop.

It was going to be a different Christmas that year as we were not at home. There wasn’t a tree and we weren’t going to exchange gifts. We would only have Christmas stockings which we hung from hooks on the sides of the boat. My father turned on the radio and we all snuggled down listening to Christmas carols.

Around midnight we heard someone walking on the dock towards our boat. We looked out and found the shop owner. He asked if we would like to see something very special. Curious, we all climbed out of the boat and followed the man into his shop. There, in the dimly lit shop next to the beautiful fish tank was a smaller aquarium that contained some green seaweed and one large sea horse. We peered into the tank and were astonished to see that the seahorse was giving birth! How amazing and how truly perfect to be happening at midnight on Christmas Eve.

A true story by Mrs Khadija

The seal who decided to come for breakfast.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Feeling Vocabulary Exercises

Here are 15 exercises using vocabulary about feelings. To visit the webpage click on the image above or on this link: Feelings

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Links to Reported Speech Exercises

FCE students are learning Reported Speech. Here are some exercises to help revise what you are learning in class.

At the movies

The FCE (First Certificate English) students are discussing movies in Unit 8. Here's a fun website that will help you improve your English using movie trailers.

What's a movie trailer? A movie trailer is a commercial for a film.

On this website you can watch many different trailers and work on English exercises about each film. It's lot's of fun! - Click on the image above or on this link: to visit the English Trailers website.

Tajoura, near Tripoli

Hello my name is Ramsay and I'm from Tajoura, near Tripoli. Would you like to know more about me? I guess you do.

How many people are in my family? There are six of us; my parents, two brothers and one sisiter and of course me.

My hometown is Tajoura. Would you like to know more about Tajoura? Well, Tajoura is one of the biggest cities in the Tripoli area. The population is about 600,000.

Where about in Tripoli is Tajoura? Tajoura is at the seaside and it's not that far from the city centre. Tajoura is a very calm city. It's not that busy in Tajoura.

What's the weather like in Tajoura? Tajoura is very hot in the summer and cold and rainy in the winter.

What are good things about Tajoura? It's not that far from the town, it's calm because it's not that busy and it's near the sea so you can go fishing and swimming in the summer.

What are the bad things about Tajoura? There are a lot of farms in Tajoura so you might get attacked by a snake and there's no nightlife, but the good thing about Tajoura is that you can grow plants and fruit there.

Tajoura is famous for it's natural beauty, so if you have time I'll advise you to visit Tajoura because it's an interesting city.

FCE preparation

My hometown - Benashur, Tripoli

Dear Michelle,

Hello my friend, how are you? I hope that you are fine.

Do you want to know about me? I'm from Libya - Tripoli, I've lived my whole life in Benashur so it's my hometown.

I live here with my mother, father and my older brother. I've live in Tripoli but the roots of my family are from a nice city called Zlitan. I have never been there but some of my friends have visited there and they told me it's a nice place and I should go there. I'd love to go if I ever have the chance.

What do I like about Benashur?
It's near the city centre, it has lots of shops, everything is near and available and it's close to the beach.

What are the things that I don't like?
That it's crowded, noisy, busy and the traffic is so bad because there are a lot of cars. That's all because Tripoli is the capital city of Libya.

What is the weather like in the summer?
It's very hot in summer, the air is so dry, but it's OK because it's my hometown, after all.

That was about my hometown. Do you want to know about me?
About me, I like reading, writing, the internet is the thing I like to do most in my free time. sometimes I spend 2 - 3 hours a day surfing the net. I love school so much and I like learning English.

I wish that you can come to visit Libya soon and I hope to hear from you soon.

Best wishes, your friend,

Magda Buhajar
FCE preparation


Thursday, December 07, 2006

Alkhoms is my hometown

Hello my name is Niall and I come from the city of Alkhoms in Libya. Do you want to know more about me? I expect you do!

How many people are in my family? Well, there are five of us; my parents, my two brothers and I. Where are we from? Well, originally we came from Alkhoms.

Where is Alkhoms? Well, it's a city in the northwestern part of Libya on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea.

What qualities does Alkhoms have? Well, Alkhoms has a very good economy due to processing and manufacture of some products. Among some of these products are cement, with two big cement factories, the local people have jobs provided for them. Other products include olives, olive oil, dates and a kind of grass used in the production of paper. it makes high quality paper that is used to make books. Alkhoms also has some of it's ancient Ottoman and Italian buildings left plus a very popular beach in the east of the city.

What are the advantages of living in Alkhoms? Alkhoms is well connected with some major cities on the coast like Tripoli and Benghazi in Libya and Cairo in Egypty. There are also a lot of farms in Alkhoms that grow olives and dates with lots of palm trees.

What is the population of your hometown? The population of Alkhoms is about 230,000 inhabitants.

What are the bad things in your hometown? If you're on a farm there is a risk you might get bitten by a snake or stung by a scorpion and another thing is that you need a car to get to hospitals or shops.

What's the weather like in Alkhoms? It's very hot and dry int he summer and rainy and cold in the winter.

Niall Binmusa
FCE preparation

Benashur Street

Posted by Picasa

Do you want to know about where I'm from?

My name is Najib. I am from Libya. Can I give you some information about my country? OK. I think you agree.

Well, as a matter of fact Libya has been occupied by mankind for a long time, I think because of it's important location. It's located in north Africa facing the Mediterranean with a coast stretching about two thousand kilometers long.

Do you want to ask me about myself? Let me see, in fact I don't prefer to give much details about myself, so I think I'm going to make it brief.

I am twenty-nine years old. I am single, male and Muslim like all Libyans. I graduated from the Higher Institute for Tourism and Hotel Industry, but I'm not working in this field anymore.

In the meantime I am studying English at Yethreb School in Tripoli. Although I have been studying English for several years, I don't seem to do well in it. Anyway, I really don't like to bother you with my problems, adn instead of that let me ask you this question: Do you suggest that I give you an idea about my hometown? Good.

As I mentioned before, you know now that I live in Libya close to the capitol, Tripoli, which is in the northwestern part of the country. I live exactly in an eastern suburb of Tripoli which is called Suk Juma. This town has been my hometown and my grandfathers hometown for more than one hundred and fifty years.

Suk Juma is one of the biggest towns in Tripoli and has a large population. It consists of big families which all know each other and keep good relationships between themselves.

People work in various occupations like; agriculture, teaching, commercial trade and many other jobs.

Do you know what the weather is like in Suk Juma? Alright, I will give you some information about that. Because of it's nearness to the sea, the town during summer doesn't get so hot as in gets in the towns located further inland, but it may get pretty hot on some days. In winter the weather is not very cold, the sun shines nearly everyday. Rain is common but not so heavy.It rarely snows but the temperature may get very low at night.

The town has lots of schools of different categories and there are some hospitals and medical clinics spread throughout the town.

The most famous thing in Suk Juma is the huge popular street market on Fridays. It always gets extremely crowded and good of all kinds are displayed on the streets.

At the end, I hope you have a good background about my hometown, and thank you for your concerns.

FCE preparation

A village in the desert of Libya

Where are you from? I'm from the region of Aljofra; Zella Village.

What is your hometown like? It is desert. It's very large and there isn't a lot of houses. There are a lot of wild animals like wolves, wild dogs, foxes and you can see many camels walking freely in the desert. I think that it is very nice.

What are some nice things about your hometown? The nice things are that all the people know each other so you can walk in any time and you feel safe all the time. Most people there are my friends. No busy places exist in my village, it's very quiet. The kinds of food there are delicious; we depend on meat and cereals. And we have very interesting songs and music in my village.

What are negative things in your town? The weather in summer is so hot that you can't go out of the house and in winter it is quite cold. The best season is autumn. The weather is pleasant all the time in autumn.

Can you tell me about some special things about Zella Village? The special thing is that all people in my hometown like foreigners very much and they are used to different people visiting the desert from all over the world.

Hafez Melad
FCE preparation

My home town - Tarhuna

Can you tell me about your hometown?

OK. I will tell you about my hometown. My hometown is Tarhuna, it's southeastward of the capitol city, Tripoli. It's faraway, about a hundred kilometers from the centre of the capital. It's nice, quite a large city.

What is Tarhuna famous for?

Tarhuna City is famous for agriculture, especially for the production of barley, wheat, olive oil and pickled olives, almonds, figs and some other vegetables such as potatoes, onions and also watermelon. Also it is famous for animal production, such as live animals, milk, meat and wool.

Do you have any ideas about tourist attractions in Tarhuna?

In Tarhuna there are a lot of ancient houses, small castles and mansions. They were built long ago from big stones and mud. Also, it has a very famous spring called Ayn Al-Sharshara but it is dry now so I'm very sorry about it because it was once a nice thing in my hometown.

How many people live there?

Ah, you ask me about the population. Believe me, I don't know.

Elmehdi Mohamed
FCE preparation

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Extra Writing Task!

Describe an interesting neighbor you have had.

You can either click on comments and write about the topic above, or you can write it on paper and turn it in to your teacher.

BBC Arabic site for English learners

The BBC has a wonderful site for Arabic speakers who are learning English. It's full of interesting things to read and listen to. There are many activities to help you learn. To visit the site, click on the image above or on this link: BBC Arabic for English Learners

Dos & Dont's while visiting Libya

Libya is a big country and has nice weather in general. All people are Muslims and speak Arabic. I can say that Libyan people are peaceful, modest and kind, especially with foreigners.

Most people work at government departments. Some people are interested in agriculture, while others have their own businesses.

Libyan people love their country very much and do not like anyone to make fun of them. Visitors to Libya can realize hospitality and charity.

The national anthem is played everyday at school before lessons, and in other public occasions. When the national anthem is played it's not allowed to make any movement.

Some other don'ts for foreign visitors are:
  • Men shouldn't talk to women.
  • Men shouldn't sit in the back seat of a taxi unless the front one is full.
  • It's not a good idea to withdraw money from a bank by yourself, I mean alone.
  • People will be upset with you if you point at them with your finger, or even make a sign at them.

FCE preparation

My Holiday

You know, I always thought about a holiday that me and my best friends could go on together. Taking that me and all of my best friends share the same interests, which is playing football, swimming, water sports and other kinds of sports.

So my dream holiday would be to cruise to the islands with my best friends because I heard that the islands are so beautiful and such a peaceful paradise, with miles of white sandy beaches fringed by palm trees and not a high-rise building in sight!

And what matters most is that it's known for it's water sports such as water-skiing, snorkeling and scuba diving. My friends and I could go swimming at the beach, and as you know where there's a beach, there's girls!... oh, I mean football.

So my friends and I would spend most of our money there and have a lovely, fantastic time. I hope that I didn't bore you with my holiday. Good bye!

Ahmed Ahtash
FCE preparation


Swimming with dolphins
I love adventures, one of my dreams is to go on a trip around the world. I would like to go to Asia, climbing the Himalaya Mountains, skiing and enjoying the fantastic view of the surroundings and a lot of shopping. I would take with me my best friends; Amandine and Asma. We'll absolutely enjoy the swimming pool and the spa on a luxury cruise.

I'm also mad about history and ancient civilizations, so visiting the famous monuments and ancient sites and seeing how people live in other worlds and cultures will be very interesting.

I think it will be fun to go to Australia where I can enjoy water sports like scuba diving, windsurfing and water skiing. I love dolphins, I hope one day to have the opportunity to swim with them, then I can go for an eco-tour, watching the koalas and kangaroos in the wild world.

Henda Mahmoud
FCE preparation

Visiting Libya: Dos & Don'ts

Libyans are a friendly people, religion is taking an effect in their lives, generally speaking, people wear decent clothes, no shorts or miniskirts in public places.

Positive outlooks are highly valued in Libya, if someone asks, 'How are you?' the correct response is 'Thank God.' and it's also common to say 'Asalam Alikom.', which means 'Peace be upon you.', when you come or leave.

Women don't shake hands with men, it is not a good idea to speak to a woman you don't know if you are a male.

The map of Libya is very important, so bring a map because most of the streets don't have signs or are marked.

When you visit someone in his house or you are invited to a Libyan house, don't forget to bring presents like sweets, chocolates, etc.

Some other dos and don'ts for foreign visitors are:
  • Remove your shoes when you enter Libyan's houses.
  • Don't smoke unless you ask permission.
  • Don't sit behind the taxi driver if you are alone.
  • Don't take pictures of people unless you ask first.
  • Don't enter mosques unless you are a Muslim.

Abdunnabi Mohamed
FCE preparation

If You're Visiting Iraq ...

Iraq is a big country where you will see a lot of palm trees. When you go to Iraq you will see a wonderful country especially in Baghdad. There are rivers; the Dejla and Forat (their Arabic names). But unfortunately the situation there now has gone from bad to worse, after the invasion. Now Iraqi people are living in fear. If you are in Iraq now, you should stay in your home to avoid the worse. You shouldn't walk in the streets at night.

You shouldn't speak with strange people because you can't know about what they want, maybe he is a thief or bad person, maybe he's carrying a bomb. Sometimes they are good people, but you need to be careful. In the current situation you shouldn't speak about the political system.

About the rules of my country:

  • In schools there is one style of clothes for the students. If you study in one of Iraq's schools you shouldn't change from the style of the school.
  • You shouldn't drink alcohol. If you are not Muslim you shouldn't enter mosques.
  • You shouldn't smoke in hospitals or any healthy places.
  • You should respect the security men, it's a good idea to stay away from problems.
  • You should stand when you hear the national anthem and repect the flag when it is raised. People will be upset if you don't pay respect during the national anthem.
Hadeel Sadoon
FCE preparation

Visiting Korea

Diamond Mountain (Keumgangsahn) in North Korea

First of all I want to say 'Welcome to Korea!' I don't have many ideas about Korea even though I'm Korean. Anyway I'll try to help.

Korea is a very well-ordered society like the USA. When you visit Korea you shouldn't worry about taking a map of the city centre, because our government will serve you a guide and also a translator. You should take care with people because they're not very optimistic with foreigners, but they're very kind. You don't have to dress in any special way, you can just wear decent clothing.

In Korea, people don't shake hands, they bow, moving their heads down to show a greeting, but you don't have to do this, they shake hands with foreigners.

Also the level of patriotism in Korea is very high, like in the USA. You can see the national flag everywhere, in the streets, it flies over every school and on buildings and on the balconies of many houses.

It's a good idea to tip your waiter but it's not necessary. You should discard litter only in a bin. You shouldn't smoke in public places.

... In Korea there are many places to visit and have fun; mountains, falls and caverns, etc. And even in the city centre, there are many museums, old buildings and towers etc.

Have a nice time!

So Un Ha
FCE preparation

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Abdeldeem's Dream Car

If I had a Hummer car I'd want to travel all the world. The first country I'd visit would be India. Then I'd want to see China and visit old historical places. I'd visit Thailand and go to the Himalaya Mountains. Then I'd go to Africa because Africa has many kinds of animals and I'd like to catch them because it's fun.

I'll go to the pyramids to see how they were built and I'll go to France to see the Eiffel Tower. I'll go to Italy to visit the beach and stay there for three days. Then I want to go to Germany and to travel to America. I will visit the deserts of America and Mexico.

B3 - Pre-intermediate

Dream Cars

In my dreams there are a lot of cars because I like cars very much, so I can't choose only one car to write about but I'll write about two cars that I want.

The first is a Ferrari Enzo. It costs about one million dollars. It's a sport car and it's my favourite car, it's very expensive. The second car is the latest model of Mercedes Benz S600. It's a luxury car.

In fact I can't buy these cars because they are very expensive. Now my real dream is only a new car. A new car today costs not less than 12,000 Libyan dinars. When I get a new car I would like to visit most cities in Libya, my country, to see the mountains, lakes, deserts and forests.

Adel Ali
B3 - Pre-intermediate

An Italian Dream Holiday

I would like to take a vacation next summer. I will go to Italy with my friends and I'll stay for seven days.

Italy is an old country. The weather in Italy is very wet and hot but I like it. I like Italy because it has a lovely sea and swimming pools, I'd like to swim there. Italy has good food too. I'd like to eat pizza and eat in restaurants in Italy and I'd like to walk in the old cities. I would like to see many things about Roman history and I'd like to sit in front of the seaside and drink coffee and smoke.Italy has many forests, mountains and lakes. There are many stores and shops. I'd like to go shopping and buy new clothes to wear. I'll stay in a hotel when I'm in Italy.

B3 - Pre-intermediate

My Last Holiday

My last holiday was very exciting. The first thing I would like to write about is the day in the airfield. It was very enjoyable because I love to travel by airplane. I feel I'm like a bird, I can go from one locale to another one and I see my family.

I arrived in Jordan at about 12 am then I went to my apartment but I didn't take any rest. I took a shower, then changed my clothes, after that I went to a restaurant to eat the best meal ever - shawarma. Then I went to the mall and went shopping. That night I went to a party and I came home about 3:30 in the morning. I stayed in Jordan for about seven days then we went by car to Syria.

I arrived in Damascus at 2:30 in the afternoon and stayed there for two days. After that I took a bus to the country. It's very nice, it's name is Jablh in the north of Syria.

I stayed in Jablh for two weeks, then I took a small bus to Turkey were I stayed for four days. After that I came back to Syria. Syria is very nice and all travel is very nice because in the morning I went to the old market, in the evening I went swimming att he beach and at night I went to the Casino. After four weeks I came back to Libya.

Esraa Mohammed
B3 - Pre-intermediate

My Dream Car

I'd like a sports car that's very fast with big tires and two doors. About the engine, I'd like it to be a very strong engine with turbo power. It will have headlights and I want it like a convertible. For music I'd like a CD player with cassette and big speakers. In the back I want small, long taillights and I'd like a blue or dark blue car (I want a Ford Mustang GTi).

I would go in my Mustang to my farm to visit my grandmother and I'd like to drive to Egypt, Tunisia, Ghadames and Sebha. I'd like to go with my friends to the beach too.

This is not the end, it's just the beginning!

B3 - Pre-intermediate

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Dance Mat Typing

The BBC Schools website has a fun game to help you learn to type. This is fun for all levels of learners and is a good way for beginner students to practice the alphabet. Visit the site and have fun! Here's the link: Dance Mat Typing

Online Dictionary

Here's an online dictionary that's fast! : Ninjawords

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Hilary's Long Day

Hilary sat down on the sand and wondered why everything had gone wrong. A rather strange and ambiguous sentence maybe, but let's look back to the beginning of the story to know the reason.

"Hilary, wake up!" Hilary's mom called out "The airplane will take off in about two hours." "Oh please mom. Can you call the captain to delay the take off of the plane? I want to sleep!" Hilary said from under the warm covers of her bed. "we are not playing Hilary. I said WAKE UP." Hilary's mom spoke loudly. "OK!" Hilary replied. She went to the bathroom to take a shower "Oh why is there no water?" Hilary said to herself "OK, I'll take it when I arrive in Australia."

So she went downstairs quickly to eat her breakfast but she found that they had nothing to eat in the house. It was empty because they were moving to Australia. "OK. No problem. I'll eat when I arrive in Australia." thought Hilary. She went upstairs to take her suitcase and a little birthday gift she had received from her deceased father. "Where is it?" She looked out the window and found someone running. "A thief!" He had stolen the gift from her which was a beautiful jewel, but there was no time to call the police.

She took her suitcase and went downstairs only to find that her mother had already taken a taxi to the airport and left her a letter asking her to join her there. She went down to the street to search for a taxi but the city was empty and the airplane was about to take off!

Next a lot of things happened. First she stole her neighbour's car but it seemed she could get no where because the traffic was so thick. Next she nearly hit a small kitten with the car! Finally she arrived at the airport. The check in was so difficult because she had forgotten to bring her ID, but after some time they let her pass and board the plane.

At long last the airplane was moving. "Something is wrong with this airplane. It's vibrating!" Hilary exclaimed.

Tk....Tk..... Tuk....... BOOM!

Thirty minutes after take off the airplane crashed. "Where am I?" Hilary asked herself as she woke up. She was sitting down on the sand in front of the sea. "Why had everything gone so wrong?"

Ahmed Aboughrara
FCE Preparation

Friday, November 10, 2006

What's a cinquain?

A cinquain is a five line poem that is written in a specific way:

Line 1 - Title (one word) - either a subject or a noun
Line 2 - Description (two words) adjectives that describe Line 1
Line 3 - Action (three words) action verbs that relate to Line 1
Line 4 - Feeling - (four to six words) feelings or a sentence that relates to Line 1
Line 5 - Synonym - (one word) either a synonym or a word that sums it up

Here are some cinquain poems that were written by some of our Making Progress to FCE students:

Smart, funny
Loving, laughing, and joking
I just like her when she smiles.

My Family
So big, so close
Visiting, loving, giving
A lot of people but one heart.

Taha Alnatoh


Busy, crowded
Living, working, enjoying
Living in the city is very interesting.

Wide and deep
Swimming, sailing, looking
Walking on the beach is sweet.

So Un Ha


Speaking gently
Loving, sociable, friendly
I feel strange when I find him sitting alone.

Hafez Melad


Warm, kind
Covering, brightening, loving
Sun is always warm and lovely.

Kim Su Ryon


Sunny, green
Giving, feeding, warm
I'm praying to Allah to keep it safe.

Useful, friend
Teaching, helpful, amusing
Read all the book you can.

Pretty, attractive
Loving, caring, fun
You can't feel happy without her.

Elmehdi Mohamed

Pronunciation & Phonetics

This is a fantastic interactive site to help you with pronunciation and phonetics!
Using this website is a fun way to learn!
Click on the image above or on this link: Pronunciation & Phonetics

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Daily Quiz

There is a new quiz every day at GetTOEFL. The quizzes are useful for students who are planning to take the TOEFL test but they are also useful for IELTS, FCE, Upper Intermediate and Advanced level students.

Here's the link: GetTOEFL

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Passive Voice

Here's a simple explanation of Passive Voice with lots of exercises for practice and revision. Click on the image above or visit the site with this link: English Grammar Online 4U - Passive Voice

Passive Voice is found in Unit 11A of the FCE students' course book.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Making Sentences

Try this exercise just for fun. How many sentences can you make? Click on the image to play the game or on this link: Silly Sentence Game

Tuesday, October 17, 2006


The staff at Yethreb School would like to offer you warm wishes for Ramadan and a very happy Eid.

Currently we are taking a break for Ramadan. Classes will resume after the Eid on Sunday, October 29th, 2006.

If you are interested in taking any of the Cambridge exams; KET, PET, FCE, CAE, BEC - please note that the deadline for registration is on October 29th.

Please keep checking the blog during the break as we will be posting activities to do through out the month.

Wishing you a peaceful Ramadan and Eid.

The Staff at Yethreb School

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

English, baby!

Here's a website that has a different English lesson everyday. The lessons are fun and interesting. Each lesson has reading and listening - two skills that all the students need to improve. There are also vocabulary quizzes in each lesson. Click on the image above to visit the site or click on this link: English, baby!

Monday, October 09, 2006

Please read this

We hope that you 're having a fantastic Ramadan. We would like to remind you that classes will resume as soon as Eid is over, directly after the third day of Eid. In the meantime please keep checking the blog and work on the exercises that we'll be posting.

If you are planning to take any of the Cambridge exams (KET, PET, FCE, CAE, BEC) - the deadline for registration is on Sunday, October 29th. - that's as soon as we get back from the break.

Have a peaceful Ramadan.

The Staff at Yethreb School

Irregular Past Simple Verb Exercise

Here's an exercise to help you practice the past simple forms of irregular verbs. Click on the image above or on this link: ESLgo irregular verbs

Monday, October 02, 2006

Where's Aimen?

Aimen from the 'Making Progress to FCE' class is in Germany. He's taking a training course there for three months. You can read about what he's doing and what he thinks about life in Germany at his new weblog.

Here's the link: HUK-HUK

Have you got a blog?

Thursday, September 28, 2006

PET & FCE - Practice Exercises

The deadline to register for the upcoming Cambridge University English exams is on October 29th. If you are interested in taking any of these exams you will need to make sure to register as soon as the Ramadan break is finished.

To help you prepare for the exams here are some online exercises:

Cooking Verbs Vocabulary Exercise

Here's a fun exercise to keep you busy this Ramadan. How much do you know about vocabulary for foods and verbs used for cooking? Click on the image above to work on the exercise or on this link: Cooking Verbs

Tuesday, September 19, 2006


The staff at Yethreb School would like to offer you warm wishes for Ramadan.

We will be taking a break for the month of Ramadan. The last class before the break will be on Thursday, September 23rd. Classes will resume on the fourth day after the end of the month of Ramadan (directly after the 3rd day of the Eid).

Please keep checking the blog during the break as we will be posting activities to do through out the month.

REMINDER: If you are planning to take any of the Cambridge exams (KET, PET, FCE, CAE, BEC) - the deadline for registration is on Sunday, October 29th.

If you are interested in enrolling in a course or have any questions, please stop by the school or contact us.

Wishing you once again a tranquil Ramadan.

The Staff of Yethreb School

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

The Learning Edge

Here's a fun website that has lots of activities. Click on the articles in the newspaper and listen and read, then click on:

at the bottom of the window to work on the exercises related to that article.

Click here to get started: The Learning Edge

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Unforgettable - Song Exercise

Here's a music video with a gap fill exercise. Click on the image above to visit the site or on this link: Unforgettable

Be patient - it may take a while for the video to load. But after that you can listen to it over and over again, and do the exercise at the same time.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Top 21 Class in Brazil

Mrs Khadija is being featured on a blog made by students at a school in Brazil. Their teacher asked her if the students could ask her some questions using the word 'like'. They posted their questions on their school's blog. Their blog is called Top 21 Class.
Five students asked her questions. This is Daise and Simone:

This is Emerson, Marilda and Aboré:

They wanted to know what Mrs Khadija liked about Libya and what life in Libya was like. Mrs Khadija told them about her life in Libya. You can visit Top 21 Class's blog to read what she had to say.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Punctuation and Capitalization

The FCE students are working hard to improve their punctuation skills. Here's an online quiz - there are 50 questions. Click on the image above or on this link:

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Better@English podcasts

Podcasts are sound files, usually MP3s that are uploaded on the internet. There are podcasts about all kinds of things; interviews, stories, current news, poetry, or specific information. You can listen to them on the computer or download them onto an MP3 player and listen to them where ever you happen to be.

There are many podcasts especially made for people learning English. The website Better@English features two minute lessons to help you learn English vocabulary, idioms, slang, grammar and much more. To visit the site, CLICK on the image above, or on this link:

Friday, September 01, 2006

Reported Speech Exercises

Students at Yethreb School are learning about reported speech.

Here are the links to fifteen helpful exercises:

My Dream House

My dream house would be a big mansion. Inside this mansion I would like to have a big living room that includes a massive plasma TV.

I would also like to have a kitchen with a big table to eat on and a bathroom with a big jacuzzi.

Of course my dream house would include a wife that I love and live for. So I would like to have a big bedroom with a small bathroom. I'd also like to have children in my dream house; everyone with their own room.

I'd like to have a big garden with loads of trees, flowers and green grass. A garage with two cars; one for me and the other for my wife. I'd also like to have a guest room and a dining room.

Finally, I would like to add something that my family would enjoy. A fun room with a pool table, a tennis table and three or four computers.

And to sum up, I'd like to say that my dream house wouldn't be complate without my dad and mum and the whole family, so they can visit us anytime.

Well, I hope I didn't get carried away, and maybe in the future you could visit.

Ahmed Ahtash
FCE preparation

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Writing letters

The pre-intermediate /PET preparation students were assigned the task of writing a letter to an editor of a newspaper saying why they wanted to win a competition for a weekend trip to the UK. Here is what some of the students wrote:

Dear Editor,

I would like to enter this competition.

I've been learning English for about seven years because I like learning this language. It helps a lot in life, for example; in work and in communicating with people.

I have visited a lot of countries like England, France, Germany and Italy, and if I win I will take my sister with me.

I want to win the weekend because I want to have fun and I'd like to stay at the hotel because they have got a nice breakfast and dinner and I can visit the famous northern market adn shop bargains.

At last, thank you for giving us a chance to practice our language.

Yours sincerely,
Esra Elsarraj

Dear Editor of the Times Magazine,

I have been learning English for five years, first of all my parents want me to learn English; thinking about my future they wanted me to have a third language. I can speak Arabic and Portuguese. English is an international language and beginning to study younger would help me to be more fluent.

I've visited some countries like Brazil, Italy, Tunisia and Spain with my family but if I win this weekend I'll take my dad with me.

I really want to win this weekend because I want to practise English in it's mother land.


Dear Editor,

I have been learning English for over six months and my language is better than before.

I am learning English to get a better job and improve my language, your organising a competition is helping me to learn English in a specific way, especially if I win I would like to visit other countries especially in Europe and take a friend with me for fun.

I hope to win the competition to visit Liverpool and make conversation with people who speak English very well.

Your faithfully,

Isam Ben Shaban

Monday, August 28, 2006

A class survey

The B3 students have been taking surveys. Here is what they found out about their classmates:

The majority of the people in this class don't speak other anguages and most of them want to learn Italian and French. - Mahmud Sami

Quite a few people in this class are studying English to find a good job, another few people in this class are studying English because they like it and other people in class have a different purpose. About half the people in this class watch BBC news in English. About half the people in this class listen to English music. - Sarah

Everybody here spoke with Thureyah (the secretary) when they came to register for the course. Most people in this class said the assessment test was difficult. Most people said they are studying English because it is very important for their job. - Tawfik

The majority of people in this class never failed a test. The majority of people in this class feel good when they pass a test. About half of the people in this class like to do homework. Only two people in this class don't like to do homework. - Mohamed Amer Koni

About half the people in this class like maths. About half the people in this class like to do homework. Two people in this class don't like to do homework. Most people in this class do homework for an hour every day. About half the people say science subjects are their favourite. - Mohamed Jebril

Most people in this class are studying English to get a job and for work.
Most people in this class like reading because it is easier than writing.
Most people in this class like speaking because it is easier than dictation. - Adel Ali

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Saturday, August 19, 2006

What do the beginner students say?

  • I live in a flat. I live with my family. In the evening I go to the beach. - Omima Elmabruk
  • My favourite food is pizza and salad. I drink tea every day. - Tasnem
  • I live in a house. I live with my parents. In the evening I go shopping. - Emhmed
  • In the morning I go to work. I eat a sandwich or toast for breakfast. - Wesam Ali
  • I like to play football at the weekend. In the evening I watch TV. - Abdulsattar Elwefty
  • I drink milk everyday. My favourite food is pizza. - Ahmed Muftah Zargoun
  • In the morning I get up at ten o'clock. In the evening I watch TV. - Sara Mustafa Bader
  • I listen to music and watch TV at the weekend. In the evening I watch TV and drink a cup of tea. - Elham Elwefati
  • I drink orange juice every day. I eat pizza for breakfast. - Eslam
  • I like to go swimming at the weekend. In the morning I go to school. - Samar
  • My favourite food is pizza. I drink coca-cola everyday. - Fatih
  • I like to play football at the weekend. In the evening I play tennis. - Abedalghany
  • I like to go to the farm at the weekend. In the evening I go to the mosque. - Abdulwaret
  • I like to go swimming at the beach at the weekend. I like swimming. - Hajar
  • In the evening I watch TV and listen to music. I like to play football and swimming at the weekend. - Esrea Taher Balhaj

Honeymoon Holiday

First, there is no girl that doesn't dream about her wedding dress, her wedding and her honeymoon. But as I said this is just a dream, nobody knows if it will come true or not. However, it doesn't hurt if we dream.

So, if I have a honeymoon holiday where would I spend it? . . . I think I'll decide depending on the time of year that I'll have it. What I mean, if my honeymoon was in the summer and spring time I would like to spend it in Spain, exactly in the countryside of it.

I've visited Spain and it's a lovely country and I think I fell in love with it's old cities with their narrow blocks, red roses on the windows and balconies, the street markets where the local people and farmers sell their goods and their special foods. The weather is very nice, with fresh air, plenty of sun, the silence makes you feel relaxed, the views of the sea from Gibraltar are unbelievable.

Maybe because I still have these sweet memories about Spain that I always dream that I'll spend my honeymoon there and in the early morning we'll walk on the beach and watch the sunrise after that doing some sightseeing because these cities have very traditional and old Islamic buildings. Maybe we'll have lunch outdoors. At night I'll dress in my party clothes (with a scarf) and have dinner at one of the old restaurants there and listen to the Spanish guitar.

But if my honeymoon is in winter or autumn I'll spend it on the Alps, the mountains of Italy. The weather there is so cold and I think we'll spend most of the time in the cabin near the fireplace and drink hot chocolate. Very romantic, isn't it?

But in the real world I think I won't go anywhere. That is OK if the man who I marry is my soulmate. In this case, nothing more will be important.

Preparation for FCE

Dream Holiday

If I was given the freedom to choose a place to spend my holiday in, I'll choose Hawaii. Please don't ask me why, because I'm very shy.

Actually, I've seen many pictures and documentary programmes about Hawaii where the sky is clear and the mountains are high.

The Hawaiian islands are a chain of volcanic islands located in the middle of the Pacific Ocean and are part of the United States of America where it's the fiftieth state, that was the geographical definition, but in fact the real definition is paradise and it's not an exaggerated word. So can you imagine it's extended white beaches, the clear sea water and the wonderful palm trees? Imagine yourself there sleeping on a sunbed, drinking a cocktail of juices and relaxing. And there are beautiful girls like angels in your service.

At night you go to the hotel where there's a party and local dancers dance, with unique moves, wearing clothes covered with flowers. When dawn comes you go up to the mountain tops to observe the sun rising from the sea, it's a nice view and more beautiful than the sunset, I think.

It's like paradise, isn't it?

Mohammed Krefa
Preparation for FCE

To Yethreb School's teachers:

I always say to myself that there's no teacher in this world who does her job well. No one is kind and understanding. But here in this school with you Mrs. Alea, Mrs. Khadija and the others, you made me change my opinion.

I think your teaching style is perfect, especially the way you distribute the lesson period over different topics.

So. . . I would like to thank you.

Aimen Rashed

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Miss Nora's been extremely helpful with the courses at Yethreb School this summer. She's been an assistant for the B-zero group and has also been helping Miss Thureyah in the office too. Nora is studying English at high school and hopes to study English at university in two years. She's currently enrolled in our First Certificate English preparation course. Many thanks Nora and good luck in your studies!

Aimen from the B3 class brought a surprise for Mrs Alea and his classmates. He made a peach tart! It was yummy! Thanks Aimen!

Monday, August 07, 2006

IELTS - Reading and Writing Tips

For some useful tips and ideas to help you prepare for IELTS Reading and Writing you can download these files:

To read these files you need to have an Adobe Acrobat Reader installed on your computer. If you don't have that you can get it here:

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

A message for Mrs Alea

The students and staff at Yethreb School would like to wish 'GOOD LUCK' to Mrs. Alea.

We all hope you'll do well on your exams and we're looking forward to you coming home soon!

Listening for TOEFL, TOEIC and IELTS

These listening activities are designed to help students learn academic English and prepare for tests such as the TOEFL, TOEIC, and IELTS. Each clip has six news stories. The listener can read the questions for each story before starting the audio. Then the listener will hear a short news story followed by a question. If answered correctly, the listener can go to the next story.

Click on the image above to visit the site, or click on this link:

Listening Activities

In these listening activities, six different speakers answer the same question. In the flash activities, there are two questions that follow each speaker's audio.

These listening exercises are useful for students that are hoping to take PET, FCE and IELTS exams.

Click on the image above to visit the site or on this link:

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Dear Ahmad,

I live in a dormitory in Al-Fatha University. For five years I have lived there. I live in my room alone but I have many friends who live near me. Everyday I meet them and we talk about different subjects, drink coffee or tea and make dinner. I enjoy my time with them because they are good friends.

Every weekend I go to visit my family in Zliten. My father and my mother do the same job. They are both teachers.

I graduated about three months ago. I'm looking for a job now. I want to work in an oil company. (I wish that).

At the moment I'm learning English language because I need it to get a good job.

I'm looking forward to hearing from you.

Write soon,

Hassam Ben Halim

Dear Luke,

Hello my name is Jasmin. I'm 15 and I live in Tripoli, Libya. I'm currently on my summer holiday from school.

Just recently I had my results and I passed so hopefully next year will be my new school year.

I live in north Africa, in Tripoli, Libya with my family. I've got three brothers, two are older than me and one is younger.

I'm a student at secondary school. I love biology and physics. What do you like? Well, I hope it's the same subjects.

My hobbies are watching TV, doing art stuff and listening to music. I like listening to Oasis and Avril Lavigne. The reason why I listen to them is because they play the guitar which I hope I will play someday - if my mom gets me one.

What do you enjoy doing in your free time? What are your favourite subjects? Who do you live with? Would you like to visit Libya?

Looking forward to hearing from you.

Best wishes,

Jasmin Ahtash

Dear Yusef,

I am very happy that we're going to be pen friends.

I'll tell you about myself and you can do the same when you write to me.

I live in an area of Tripoli called Jama Al Saga. I live with my parents and my two sisters. They are younger than me and their names are Nessreen and Maram. My father is an engineer, he works in an Electric Company and my mother is a housewife.

I'm a student in high school in the fourth year. I like sorts like Taekwon do. In the morning I go to the club where I can learn the arts of this sport. Sometimes I visit my friends.

I'm looking forward to hearing about you.

Best wishes,


Dear Enas,

I'm very happy that we're going to be friends. I'll tell you a little about me and I hope you'll write back and tell me something about yourself too.

I live in an area in Tripoli called Ain Zara. It's far away from the centre and there are so many farms in the area.

I live with my paernets and my three younger sisters and one brother. My father is a translator and my mother has a part-time job as a dentist.

I am studying at Takadum School and I have a lot of friends. I like most subjects but not all. I'm playing sport now; volleyball and swimming. I play music.

I miss you very much and I hope to recieve your letter soon.

Best wishes,

Iman Ibrahim

Dear Hedaya,

How are you? I'm glad that I'm writing to you and I hope we can improve our friendship. In this letter I'll tell you a little about myself.

I live in Tripoli with my family. My parents are both doctors and my eldest sister is also a doctor.

I'm a student in the secondary school.

I like listeing to music and doing excercises and going shopping. I'm interested in books and fashion. Now I'm joining English classes.

Please try to write to me as soon as possible.

Lots of love,

Essra ElSarraj

Dear Ali,

I am very happy that we are still friends. I will tell you a little about myself and you can do the same when you write to me.

I still live at the same place in Benashur Street with my parents, two sisters and two brothers. My older brother Azzam has been married for one year.

These days I have lessons in English at Yethreb School. I go there three times a week, I am really interested in it. My teacher is an English woman, she has been living in Libya for 35 years. She helps me and other students to learn English. My friend, you know how important English language is?

I am working as a receptionist at a private clinic. I earn ... from my job. I spend the money that I earn on basic things.

Write to me soon,

Anas Ben Barka

Congratulations to Zahra Abudhir for passing KET (Cambridge Key English Test).
Zahra passed with merit!
Good job Zahra!

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Exercises for PET preparation

There are some very nice interactive exercises for PET Preparation.
Click on the image above to visit the site or on this link:

Friday, June 30, 2006

About Me

My name is Mohammed. I am 17 years old. I am studying in high school here in Libya. I like swimming, playing basketball and walking. I love watching TV, especially the MBC 4 Channel. It's the only channel I love and I'm watching every single day. I'm crazy about a series named 'Charmed'. It's talking about three wonderful sisters who love each other and they have a secret . . they are three witches. Good witches banishing demons. . . I'm sorry that I'm talking very much about them, just I'm so crazy with this series.

I have a small family, my parents, two sisters and two brothers. I'm living in a house here in Tripoli with them and with talking about my family, I have someone who is like one of my brothers. Is my best brother and my best friend. He changed me for the better, from the darkness to the lightness. The problem was that he was not my mother's child. He made me pray in the mosque every single day, five times. I have given him a name, it's 'White Lighter'. It's the best name for him. Sometimes I am telling him things my family doesn't know. He is like we can say 'wiser', he is so honest. He is standing with me in the problems to give a solution for these problems. Piousness is the best thing in him. The 'White Lighter' is named Naser adeen Bukrah. He is my best friend of all. God bless him.

My plan in the future is to travel to Britain to complete my studies there in one of the most wonderful universities like Manchester or Cambridge and after studying going to America to work there in LA or San Francisco. Just I want God to be with me every single step of the way.

I like listening to music. My favourite artists are Celine Dion, Beyonce and Shania Twain. Thank you for reading. I hope you enjoyed the story of my life.

Mohamed Ben Oun
Making Progress - FCE

Introducing Myself

Hello, my name is Ahmed and I live in Mezran Street. I study in Ali Woraith, it's a high school and it's majors are medicine, economy and engineering. I hope to be a doctor because I like helping people. Just recently I had my results and I passed, so next year will be last in Ali Woraith.

I came to Yethreb School hoping that I will learn more about English, because I think if you want to be a doctor you have to know a lot about English. That's a problem with a lot of Libyan doctors that they don't know English or they know little about English.

I enjoy studying, I also enjoy sports, especially football. My favorite football club is Liverpool. And maybe if I don't make it as a doctor and I would like to be a professional football player!!!

Ahmed Ahtash
Making Progress - FCE