This is a blog created for my students and of course for all my fellow teachers of English who may find it useful.

Sunday, 25 November 2012


“I know this, that life is short, they say, you wake up one day, on that day, all your dreams, everything you wished for and you wanted……is gone, just like that”.
“People get old and, you know, things change and situations change and what I want is just… I want this moment, right now, I want this day……
My feelings for you, the way you look right now, the way I look at you, I want this to last forever”.

Thursday, 15 November 2012



Listening 1 Task 1 – Listening for detail

Recording script

In the mid 70s BC, two important figures emerged in Roman politics: Marcus Crassus, who was the richest man in Rome and a great General, and Gnaeus Pompey, who had been a General under Sulla.
At the same time, in 73 BC a Thracian slave called Spartacus from a town in the Pelopponese, escaped from a gladiatorial school with 70-80 gladiators by taking the knives in the kitchen and a wagon full of weapons like, spears, swords and shields. They camped on Mount Vesuvius and were joined by other slaves to fight against the Romans. He made a difference by fighting against slavery of poor people. To show he was their leader, he wore a crown of laurels on his head.
The Senate in Rome sent Claudius Glaber against the rebel slaves with about 3000 soldiers but Spartacus tricked the Romans and attacked them from behind. Spartacus wanted to lead his men across the Alps to escape from Italy but the Gauls and the Germans wanted to stay and rob and steal. They separated from Spartacus who spent the winter near Thurii in southern Italy.
By 72 BC Spartacus had an army of about 70000 slaves. There were no Roman citizens in this army. Spartacus held the Romans at bay for over two years before they finally defeated him. They crucified him on the Appian Way outside Rome.

Watch the trailer of the movie

Spartacus is a 1960 American epic historical drama film directed by Stanley Kubrick and based on the novel of the same name by Howard Fast. The life story of the historical figure Spartacus and the events of the Third Servile War were adapted by Dalton Trumbo as a screenplay.
The film stars Kirk Douglas as rebellious slave Spartacus and Laurence Olivier as his foe, the Roman general and politician Marcus Licinius Crassus. Co-starring are Peter Ustinov (who won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role as slave trader Lentulus Batiatus), John Gavin (as Julius Caesar), Jean Simmons, and Charles Laughton. The film won four Oscars in all.
Anthony Mann, the film's original director, was replaced by Douglas with Kubrick after the first week of shooting.
The film became the biggest moneymaker in Universal Studios' history.





Listening 2 – Answer the questions
Recording script

N: Hi George. Seen any good films recently?
G: Yeah, I saw one last night and it wasn’t that bad.
N: Oh what was that?
G: It was called Spartacus.
N: Spartacus? You must be joking!
G: No, it was about the slave revolt against the Romans in 70 BC.
N: Ah! I can’t stand historical films.
G: Actually I usually like them but in parts this one was a bit poor.
N: Why’d you say that?
G: Well, the film…..i think it was different from what we learnt at school.
N: Yeah, many films are like that.
G: And also, it was far too long. It lasted nearly 3 hours.
N: Oh God! Boring!
G: What I didn’t like most was having characters which didn’t exist in history.
N: Yea, I agree, that’s totally stupid.
G: Yea, there was a woman called Varinia. She was supposed to be the wife of Spartacus.
N: Didn’t Plutarch just say he had a wife but we don’t know her name?
G: Yes, that’s right. Then according to the film Spartacus dies on the cross.
N: No, he didn’t. that’s so wrong!
G: Yeah, I know but I still enjoyed the film!
N: Oh, you’re impossible.