Relative clauses

by H. Adiei. English & French Teacher at AIT Language School.

Las oraciones de relativo en inglés son unas de las fórmulas más utilizadas y en este artículo te descubrimos todo lo que te ofrecen.

The relative clauses bring up many questions and a lot problems to high school students. So, I am going to explain as brief and simple as possible and answer the following questions: «What are the relative clauses?”, “When do we use them?» and «What kind of relative clauses are there?».

What are relative clauses?

Relative clauses are sentences that describe a noun. They do the same “job” adjectives do. E.g.:

relative clauses

When do we use the relative clauses?

We use the relative clauses when we want to give additional information about something without having to start a new sentence. The «relative clause» connects the information.

We always put a relative clause immediately after the noun it describes. Also, we use relative pronouns at the beginning of a relative clause. The relative pronouns are when, where, who, which, why, whose, whose and that.

  • When is used for a time.

e.g. ‘Half past two is when the lesson finishes’.

e.g. ‘2008 is when mike wrote his first book’.

  • Where is used for places.

e.g.’Barcelona is where my best friend was born.’

e.g. ‘This is where I sleep’

  • Who is used for people. Sometimes write «who’s», which is the contraction of «who is» or «who has».

e.g. ‘Angel, who’s got the longest hair in my class, is a model. (who has)

e.g. ‘ The guy who’s standing next to the window is a famous actor. (who is)

  • Which is used for things.

 e.g.’The car which you bought is cool.’

 e.g. ‘ The path which I take to as been blocked temporarily’.

  • Why is used for a reason.

 e.g. ‘Heavy traffic is the reason why I am late.’

e.g.’ You are too loud that is why I don’t sit next to you anymore’.

  • Whose is used to express possession.

e.g.  ‘The woman whose dog bit me has moved to another town.’

e.g. ‘The boy whose brother appeared on the game show goes to my school.’

  • Whom is similar to «who» but it’s formal.

e.g.’I saw the man whom you saw at the party.’

e.g. ‘Romeo is whom my heart belongs to’

  • That Can be used informally instead of ‘who’ and ‘which’ (except in ‘non-defining’ relative clauses, see below).

e.g. ‘The man who I work with collects snakes.’

‘The man that I work with collects snakes.’

e.g. ‘The shop (which) she likes has closed down.’

‘The shop that she likes has closed down.’

What kind of relative clauses are there?

There are two kinds of relative clauses: «the defining relative clauses» and «the non-defining relative clauses».

  • The defining relative clauses are the ones that specify important information. Without that additional information the sentence would not make sense.

e.g. Samsung mobile phones which are made in South Korea are very expensive.

  • The non-defining relative clauses are the ones that provide additional information that is not necessary. This information goes between commas. The sentence still makes sense if we eliminate the information between commas.

e.g. Samsung mobile phones, which are made in South Korea, are very expensive.

Phrasal verbs with ‘Get’

En este artículo hablaremos sobre unos phrasal verbs que aparecen continuamente en cualquier conversación o texto en inglés que se precie: Los phrasal verbs con GET.

What is a phrasal verb?

A phrasal verb is a verb that consists of a basic verb and another word or word. But remember that may not have the same meaning a the original verb, and they behave differently grammatically.

E.g.  The verb «get» means to have or to obtain. Whereas  the phasal verb «get up» means to wake or to stand on your feet.

You should treat each phrasal verb as a separate verb, and learn it like any other verb. So, to learn at an easy pace, let’s focus on phrasal verbs with «get».

  • Get up means to awake or to stand on your feet.

e.g. Katie gets up at 7 o’clock ever day. (Awakes)

e.g. All the student got up when the headmisstress came into the room. (Stood up)

  • Get across means to cause to be undersood.

e.g. You don’t have to shout to get the message across! I can hear you.

  • Get along means to have a friendly relationship.

e.g. Pete and I get along really well, except for when he steals my food.

  • Get away means to go on holiday or to escape.

e.g. I need to to get away eacause work has become too stressful.

  • Get by means manage to survive in spite of difficulties.

e.g. It hasn’t been an easy month for Jane. She lost her job and her car was stolen today but she is getting by.

  • Get down to means to descend or to get serious about a topic.

e.g. Let’s get down to the main problem.

e.g. «Excuse me, where is the cantine?» «Get down three floors and you will find it on you right hand-side».

  • Get in we use for when you go in a car or when you arrive at a place.

e.g. » Kids, get in the car! We’re going to be late for school again!»

  • Get off we use for when you leave a bus, a train, a plane or a place.

e.g. I forgot get off the train at the stop you told me to.

  • Get on means to start doing or continue doing an activity. We also use it when we go in a bus, a train, a plane or we talk to someone on the phone.

e.g. «Jaime, get on the phone, it’s you grandma».

  • Get out means to become know or to leave a place and go to another.

e.g. If this secret gets out, we’ll all be in trouble.

e.g. I got out of the office at half past seven.

  • Get over means to overcome a problem or to recover from an illness.

e.g. It took me three weeks to get over the flu.

e.g. Charlie has gotten over the break-up. She’s dating Mark now.

  • Get through means succeed in finishing a task.

e.g. I got through the whole bootcamp routines without taking a break.

Cómo preparar el examen de First Certificate

Inauguramos una nueva categoría en nuestro blog: «Ayudas para aprobar FCE», en la que iremos añadiendo consejos y ejercicios para aprobar el FCE. Hoy, nos centraremos en la Parte 5 del examen: Reading and Use of English.

 

First Certificate: Ejercicios

Sobre esta parte del examen debes saber lo siguiente:

  • La parte 5 del examen First Certificate—Reading and Use of English consiste en un texto en inglés extraído de una novela o un artículo.
  • Habrá seis preguntas que tendrás que contestar sobre el texto, con cuatro posibles respuestas (A, B, C o D) para cada pregunta.
  • Cada respuesta vale dos puntos, con una máxima puntuación para esta parte del examen de 12 puntos.

First certificate

Ejercicios para aprobar el First Certificate

Recuerda que First Certificate—Reading and Use of English está dividido en siete partes y solo tendrás 75 minutos para hacerlo. Por lo tanto, deberás pensar en dedicar entre 12 a 15 minutos para esta parte. No es mucho tiempo. ¿Cómo lograrlo?

  1. Empieza a leer en inglés ya. Busca artículos o una buena novela, y procura leer un poco cada día. Nunca olvides que se trata de un examen de Reading. Debes demostrar, por tanto, que la lectura es algo que dominas bien.
  2. Puesto que solo tendrás unos 15 minutos para hacer esta parte del examen, debes distribuir bien el tiempo. Empieza por leer el título del texto, y la introducción, si hay una. Parece una obviedad, pero el titulo e introducción ofrecen mucha información al lector.
  3. No es necesario leer todo el texto a fondo. Procura dedicar los primeros dos o tres minutos leyendo por encima el texto para tener una idea general del contenido. Anota al margen las ideas principales en cada párrafo.
  4. Ahora, lee la primera pregunta. No leas las respuestas. Mas bien, busca la respuesta en el texto. Tus notas al margen te ayudarán a localizar dónde en el texto puede estar la respuesta. Cuando la hayas encontrado, subráyala.
  5. Ahora, lee las cuatro opciones, y intenta determinar cuál de las cuatro encaja mejor con la respuesta que has subrayado. No elijas la opción que contiene las mismas palabras que la respuesta que has subrayado porque seguramente estará mal. La opción correcta siempre utilizará palabras diferentes a la respuesta que has subrayado. Piensa, por tanto, en términos de sinónimos.
  6. Id tachando las opciones incorrectas. Casi siempre habrá dos opciones que serán claramente incorrectas. Cuando te quedan solo dos opciones, elige la que más se acerca a la respuesta que has subrayado. Recuerda—si la opción contiene las mismas palabras que la respuesta subrayada, esa opción seguramente será incorrecta.
  7. Las respuestas a todas las preguntas aparecen en el texto en orden. Eso es una gran ayuda. De ese modo sabrás que la respuesta a la pregunta 2 aparecerá en el texto después (y no antes) de la respuesta a la pregunta 1. Y así sucesivamente.
  8. Controla el tiempo. Recuerda que solo tendrás entre 12 y 15 minutos.

¡Recuerda!

Para aprobar First Certificate Reading and Use of English Part 5, hay que leer en inglés. Empieza ya. Esta parte del examen pondrá a prueba tu capacidad de leer y comprender lo que estás leyendo. Es imposible aprobar esta parte si antes no has desarrollado el hábito de leer en inglés.

Valentine’s Day in the United Kingdom

Valentine’s Day is a romantic observance celebrated in the UK and many other countries every February 14.

When Is Valentine’s Day 2019?

Thursday, February 14th, 2019.

Is Valentine’s Day a Public Holiday?

Valentine’s Day is only an observance, so unless it falls on a Sunday, shops and banks should be open. However, restaurants, hotels, movie theatres, and other romantic venues might be very busy. Be sure to book your room, table, or tickets well in advance.

Valentine’s Day in the UK

According to a 2017 study more than half (52%) of the UK population didn’t plan to buy a gift for their loved ones for Valentine’s Day. 48% didn’t even plan on buying a card.

However, the study conducted for PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) calculated that the people in the UK would spend almost half a billion pounds on Valentine’s Day gifts, men spending about 40 pounds each, which is nearly twice as much as women. The study also predicted that the average spending on Valentine’s Day would rise 12% compared to the year before.

Valentine’s Cards and Dinners

Like Halloween, Valentine’s Day is a celebration embraced by commerce and used heavily in marketing. Cupid, love hearts, red roses, lovebirds, and the color red is used to symbolize romantic love on stuffed toys, cards, chocolates, and other gifts. It is common for couples to eat a romantic meal together on this day, and restaurants are often booked out.

More than 25 million cards are sent for Valentine’s Day each year. Some people also send Valentine’s Day cards to friends and family to show their love and appreciation.

Regional Valentine’s Celebrations

Nearly half of UK adults consider themselves to be romantic, and Valentine’s Day is considered theday of romantic love, often celebrated with a candlelit meal or a romantic getaway.

The City of Love

Glasgow, Scotland calls itself the “City of Love,” as it is believed that the forearm of one of the two St Valentines is kept in the church of Blessed St John Duns Scotus. The relic is decorated with red roses. Special services dedicated to lovers and featuring prayers for those still seeking it are held in the church on Valentine’s Day. The reliquary holding the forearm is a popular spot for men to propose to their girlfriends on Valentine’s Day.

Gretna Green, the first Scottish village encountered when traveling from England to Glasgow, was famous for English couples to elope to as they could marry at 16 there according to Scottish law. It is still a popular place for marriages, especially on February 14.

Jack Valentine and St Dwynwen

In Norfolk, Valentine’s Eve is celebrated by the mystical figure of Jack Valentine knocking on back doors and leaving gifts for kids and adults alike. Jack Valentine is also known as Old Father Valentine or Old Mother Valentine.

In Wales, St Dwynwen’s Day on January 25 is celebrated instead of, or in addition to, Valentine’s. St Dwynwen is the patron saint of Welsh lovers.

The English Origin of Valentine’s

The modern origins of Valentine’s Day come from England. The first real association of Valentine’s Day with romantic love, or “love birds,” comes from Geoffrey Chaucer’s poem Parlement of Foules. Dating from 1382, it states: “For this was on St. Valentine’s Day, when every bird cometh there to choose his mate.” William Shakespeare’s Hamlet (1600–1601) refers to both Saint Valentine’s Day and the phrase “to be your Valentine,” showing that Valentine’s Day was established in British culture by that time.

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