Thursday, March 30, 2006

Genetically modified food

Nowadays, we are becoming more and more ahead and eating genetically modified food without even knowing that we do. But with the increasing awareness these days, people have started to question the effects of these foods on their health and whether they can be consumed safely.

On one hand, biotechnology companies and some scientists say that these crops are produced in a more efficient and environmentally friendly way. In addition, they argue that GM foods are more cost-effective because they are using less pesticides and herbicides and a yield much more crops than the usual ways, so it can help the developing countries by solving the problem of hunger and poverty as the products are more and cost is less. Furthermore, specialist in agriculture have said that using the technology of GM crops will allow efficient use of existing farmland thus it will help to preserve more natural habitats. Moreover, GM crops can be enriched with nutrients, in that way it may benefit human health.

On the other hand, organic farmers are complaining of being out of work and they are afraid from destruction of their trade if GM foods flood the markets with their cheaper products. Friends of the environment also have some debates around the issue, they said that the ecological balance could be affected in some way by tampering with Mother nature. In addition, they are a bit concerned about the use of pesticides and herbicides on resistant breeds which could lead to a paradoxical increase in their use. Other campaigners point to the unpredictable health risks that may happen. They also assure that these crops will not help the developing world as the cause of hunger is not scarcity of food but its the maldistribution of food; however, they believe that these crops will only benefit big biotechnology companies.

In my personal opinion, I totally agree with the first party who says that GM food is very helpful because I think that modified foods have been used for centuries in many ways such as crossbreeding, eliminating of weaker varieties, etc. and if we had not done that we would probably be eating grass instead of the variety of food crops that we are enjoying now.

Ehab Al-Shelly
IELTS Preparation

Ain Zarah, Tripoli, Libya

Fifty years from now

Life will be completely different fifty years from now when I am in my seventies. Almost everything will have changed by that time.

First of all, my appearance as well as my character will have definitely changed by the time I am in my seventh decade of life. I suppose that I'll be a bit short, moving with the help of a walking stick. Short gray hair will cover my head with a small area of baldness at the top of it. My face will be full of wrinkles but my eyes will be the same as now, sparkling with life. I think I will have a stronger personality with great experience in life. However, I'll be easily excited and nervous, and this will put me in a lot of trouble.

Secondly, I can't imagine how my social life will be like! Will I be married to an old annoying woman with my grandsons and granddaughters filling the house, shouting, playing and destroying my quietude? Or will I be married to a beautiful old lady enjoying the rest of our lives together? Or maybe I'll be single or a widower and my heart burning with sorrow?

At last, I think that science will have reached the stage that cannot be imagined. Streets will be full of skyscrapers and apartments will be all computerized. Transport will be very easy using flying vehicles. A lot of diseases will have been eliminated, furthermore cures for cancer and AIDS will have been found. The cloning of humans may become real. Humans may colonize space and other planets.

To sum up, life will be much more easy than now. However, no one can expect what will happen 50 years from now. In addition, no one can know whether he will live to witness that or he will be just a part of his offspring's memories.

Ehab Al-Shelly
IELTS preparation

Monday, March 27, 2006

Test Your Grammar

Here's an online grammar test - 50 questions. Take the test and bring your results to your teacher!

The Libyan Family

Family’s relationships are no doubt the fundamental base that a society is built on and therefore; this society’s strength and lasting depends strongly on this smaller social structure.

I personally come from a typically traditional society, where the relationships are closely embroidered between its members, all the family members, headed by the father, live under one roof and comply with family rules. Important decisions concerning any of the family members are discussed by everyone and taken democratically, though the final word always depends on the head of the family’s acceptance.

Different from the other societies, especially of the modern world, Libyan family relationships are amazingly strong. People’s loyalty to their families is surprisingly unlimited, one would sacrifice his life and give up anything for another and this reveals the importance of the family relationships and more importantly their reflection and influence on the society’s structure.

Similarly to all other human relationships and activities, family relationships in general, particularly in my country have advantages and disadvantages. Being a member of a typical Libyan family for example is enough to make you feel secure, all the family gives unlimited support for you in all aspects, you feel cared for, thought of and never forsaken by all of them, in other words; you feel that you literally live in a community.

On the other hand, the same family can be a source of frustration and disappointment for some of your dreams and ideas in view of the fact that at one point you don’t actually have a personal viewpoint, your decisions can never be taken independently. You simply lack a space of privacy, the case that might be unbearable for some people.

As a result of the communicational revolution and the rapid changes that have happened and are still happening as a response to its requirements, the way of life and its styles have had to be modified and so have the relationships between people accordingly. Fortunately or unfortunately - I can’t really be sure. The case is similar in my country to some extent, people have changed and are still continuing to change, selfishness has started eating into the beautiful core inside us, people are being very materialistic, all they think of is their own benefits. Ethics, principles, dignity, love and fairness are lost or ignored.

To put it differently, notwithstanding the change is a must to cope with modern life, the challenge remains of how we can modify our life to meet the necessities of the modern world without losing humanity.

Abdurahman Abudeyah

My School

My school's location is in Benashur zone near the Al-Mukhtar clinic. It's a very large building, two floors, each floor has many classes. The number of students in each classes is between 12 and 15 students.

There are several English teachers in my school. Mrs. Alea, Mrs. Asma, and Mrs. Cynthia are from the UK, Mrs. Khadija is from the USA, Mrs. Carolina is from Argentina and Mr. Salah's from Libya. Besides them there is an important person who takes care of the students and the system of the school. Yes, it's Thureya the secretary. I call her 'The dynamo of the school'.

I want to talk about my teacher Mrs. Alea. I won't say she's beautiful and funny and she has blue eyes - like Elton John's song 'Blue Eyes' - because she knows that and she knows I love her, but what I really like in Mrs. Alea is that she's very clever and has a strong personality.

In my school there are multinational students from Libya, India, the Ukraine, Korea, Egypt, Sudan, etc.. And I like that because I can make friends from other countries and cultures. I can see their countries through them. I can improve my English language by dealing with them and this is making my communication skills better.

The courses in my school are useful for any levels and these courses can improve your English language. You can get a certificate from the University of Cambridge by doing some exams through my school.

I hope you like my school. Come to visit my school and you will see that by your self.


English is my favourite class

My favourite class is English language and I take English classes three times a week at seven o'clock to nine o'clock on Sunday and Wednesday. Mrs Alea from the United Kingdom teaches us on these days and Mrs. Khadija from the United States teaches us on Monday from five o'clock to 6:30. I'm studying with a small group and the students are intelligent.

I like the English course very much because I'm learning more new vocabulary every day, grammar, how to pronounce words, we practice together and the teacher uses modern methods for teaching, such as for example, we answer a lot of exercises on the computer in the computer lab, we listen to CDs, tapes and we also use the Internet to see some of our homework on our schools weblog. All this makes my mind refreshed. As you know for any language - "If you don't use it you will lose it."

Finally I hope to learn English and speak English fluently.

Elmahdi Mohamed

My favourite subjects

My favourite subjects are music and language. I love music, because when I was in Korea I was a student at music University. I can sing but not very well and I can play the guitar and the piano.

I love language, too. Especially English because it's an international language. If I don't know English, I can't communicate with foreigners or get a good job. Of course I want to get a good job. I want to be an interpreter.

My favourite teacher's name is Mrs. Alea. I like her because she is an experienced teacher and I think she's very intelligent. She's the most famous teacher in Tripoli. She's very nice.

So Un Ha

Friday, March 24, 2006

Word Games!

Here's a website with some fun word games. Click on the image above or this link:

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

A house in Ain Zarah, Tripoli, Libya

Nice life with my family

I live with my family in a big house. It's three stories tall. The first story is for all, I mean it's the living area for my family. The second floor is for my father and I have the last floor. My house is near my uncle's house. It's not old and not new. We lived in this house for 13 years. I live in a quiet area and it's called Zanath. It's a nice area. All the neighbors are very polite, especially my neighbor on the right.
About my house, it consists of four rooms one of them is a living room and the other are bedrooms and there are two bathrooms, one kitchen and two balconies.

I have some plants but I don't have a garden because I live in the third-floor. My father likes to grow flowers, plants, trees. He has a nice garden.

Now I'm living with my father, mother, my sisters and brother. My family consists of three sisters one of them is married, now she is pregnant and the others are there still single. My brother is nine years old. There is a big difference between me and him, about 17 years. My grandmother also lives with us. She is 87 years old, she's still young. I am looking for a groom for her :) That is my family.

I hope to open my house. I like children. But I am still looking for bride. If you have one please tell me - it will be a favor from you to me, with a lot of thanks in advance! At this time I don't like to live in my house, when I am marry it will be okay. At this time I'm living with my family. I hope to buy something for my house like rugs, carpets, tables, armchairs, and dressing tables for my wife. Some vases for flowers, plain curtains for the windows and many things.

Diya Mohamed El-Arrosi

My flat

I live in a flat in Benashur Street. It's in the middle. There are two bedrooms, a living room, dining room, kitchen, a bathroom and a hall. There isn't a garden.

I live with my family. I don't like my house because there isn't a garden and it isn't big. I wish I had a big house but my house is not bad.

Najla Rahal

My house in Tripoli

I live in a house in Tripoli. It's a new house about 10 years old and it's very big.

There are two bedrooms on the first floor and two bathrooms. The first bathroom is next to my bedroom and the second bathroom is next to the kitchen. There is a living room and there is a garden in front of the house. In the summer there are flowers everywhere.

I live there with my family but we have a lot of visitors and many of my friends come to see me. My cousins live nearby on the next block.

I love my house for many reasons. The first is my family is with me, next the garden, then the flowers in summer.


My house in the Ukraine

I live in a flat in an old house, about 50 years old. It's near the river Dnipro, about 2000 meters from it in an old town. In my flat there are two bedrooms, a kitchen, a dining room, a living room, a bathroom and a toilet and a balcony. It's a very comfortable flat.

There is a garden in front of the house. There are trees and very beautiful flowers in spring and summer.

I live with my husband. Every morning he goes jogging to the beach. I like my house because it's near the river and the view from my kitchen window is beautiful.


I love my home

I live in a house near the university in front of the veterinary medicine college. It's a new big house. It consists of two floors. Downstairs there's a kitchen and bathroom and there are two Arabic sitting rooms and there's a dining room and a living room. Upstairs there are five bedrooms and there's a bathroom and there's a lovely living room. There was a beautiful garden but now there's an Internet cafe.

I live with my family. They're a wonderful family especially my twin sister Abeer. She is an unusual girl, she writes poems.

I love my home for many things. It's a comfortable house and its modern. I love my room very much. I have a lot of things in my room. I have computer and a stereo and I have a lot of CDs and there's a desk with a lot of books and some photographs. There are pictures on the wall. It's a lovely room.


My home

I live in a house. It's near my work. It's a new house, about three months old and it's very big. There are nine bedrooms and three bathrooms and a kitchen. We have a garden and in spring and summer there are flowers everywhere.

I live with my family, my brothers and sisters, my mother and my father. We are a big family.

I love my house very much. It's very nice and I like it for many reasons: my bedroom, the garden and many things but the best thing it's near my work and it's near the best supermarket in my city.

Walid Omar

Houses in Suk Juma, Tripoli, Libya

My house

I live in the house near the Central Hospital. It's an old house, about 50 years old and it's small. There are three bedrooms, a bathroom and kitchen upstairs. There is a kitchen, a bathroom and a living room downstairs.

I live with my family in this house. There is a supermarket, school, and a mosque near my house. We have a lot of visitors. Some of my family who live far away from my city come and stay in my house when they need something in my city.

I love my house because it's my family's house.

Ahmad Salam

Let me tell you where I live.

I live in a big house near the shop next to a school. It's far from the sea. It's an old house about 40 years old. There are two living rooms, and a bedroom. There is a bathroom between the kitchen and the bedroom.

There is a small garden in the front of the house. I live with my family. I like it very much because it is very nice in many seasons. Some flowers and plants grow in spring and it has an air-conditioner in the summer, but the best thing about the house is that it's very comfortable and quiet. I don't hear any loud noises.

Suleman Mohamed Aisiah

What did I do in the last years of the 20th century?

I came to Libya in 1995 and I started work in Gmeil Hospital. It was a nice hospital but I lived very far from Tripoli and I life was very boring. I stayed two years in Gmeil, I left it in 1997.
I went back to the Ukraine to my old job in the Hospital of Infectious Diseases. I returned to Libya in 2000. My life became exciting because I lived in Sbea and three times a week I went to English school.


Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Classroom surveys

The B3 class took a survey of their classmate's eating habits and then wrote up a report with their results. This is what some of the students had to say:

Mohamed Ahmed says:
The majority of the people in this class answered yes when I asked them about having breakfast this morning. Most of the people in this class have their breakfast at home. Quite a few of the people in the class have a sandwich and about half the people in the class have breakfast with their family. Hardly any of the people in the class have their breakfast in a coffee shop.

Said Salem Said found that:
In this class there are different favorite foods, some of them eat meat or seafood like Elmahdi and Tahar but the majority of people in the class eat pizza. There are a few the people who do not eat pizza but most of them eat it between one and up to three times a week.
That's my reporting results of the people in the class.

Elmahdi Mohamed learned:
The majority of the people in that this class prefer their mom's cooking. About half the people in this class went to a fast food restaurant. Hardly any of the people in this class prefer fast food restaurants over their mom's cooking.

Taha told us:
The majority of the people in this class prefer their mom's cooking in their families. And all the people in this class like their mom's cooking better than their dad's. About half of the people in the class know how to cook eggs.

Rabia Ramada Zreaba reported:
The majority of the people in this class like to eat dinner at home. Almost nobody likes to eat dinner outside their home. In this class most of the people like dinner at nine o'clock. There are a few people in this class that like dinner at 11 o'clock and about half the people in the class like dinner at 10 o'clock. In this class hardly any of the people like a special sort of dinner.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Question Time!

What question can you never answer 'Yes' to?
Do you know the answer?
Tell your teacher next time you go to class.You will earn a gold star!

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Adjective Game

Play this fun game where you'll use adjectives to make more interesting sentences. Click on the image above or on the link to play the Adjectives Game.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Verb Tenses - a test!

Click on the image above to test your knowledge of tenses in English. (30 questions) - Write down your score and show it to your teacher.