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November 16, 2017
by Bloomsbury International

Fun Words in British English: the Word Fancy

Hello everyone,

This week I am going to talk about the word FANCY. It has so many different meanings and is one of the most versatile and fun words in British English.

Try matching these sentences with their relative meanings:

Fancy costume party

1. Do you fancy a drink tonight?
2. Last night I went to a fancy restaurant.
3. I’ve been invited to a fancy dress party.
4. Fancy meeting you here!
5. My friend fancies you
6. He fancies himself as a bit of a singer
7. I’ve just passed my exam-fancy that!
8. Thinking about marrying Ryan Gosling was just a passing fancy.
9. He’s prone to flights of fancy
a) Like (in a romantic manner)
b) Think to be
c) To express surprise or shock
d) Hard to imagine
e) The faculty of imagination.
f) A superficial or transient feeling of liking or attraction
g) Something elegant or posh
h) Feel a desire or liking for
i) A Costume

                                                                        Answers: 1 h, 2 g, 3 I, 4 c/d 5 a, 6 b, 7 c/d, 8 e, 9 f

Just remember that:Two woman at the outdoors cafe

Fancy can be a verb: Do you fancy a drink tonight? My friend fancies you
Fancy can be an adjective: Last night I went to a fancy restaurant
Fancy can be a noun: just a passing fancy, prone to flights of fancy
Fancy can be part of a stand-alone fixed expression: Fancy that!
Fancy can be part of a fixed expression followed by [verb+ing]: Fancy meeting/seeing you here!

So, if you fancy trying some out, see which ones take your fancy and use them in conversations outside the classroom. I am sure people will be impressed and will probably say or think ….. “Fancy that!”.


November 3, 2017
by Bloomsbury International

Bonfire Night: Staying in or Going Out?

Bonfire Night and the History of Guy Fawkes

It’s that time of year again when we wrap up warm, put on a wooly hat, scarf and gloves and head out see the many bonfire celebrations around London.

bonfire night sparklerBonfire night, which takes place every year on the 5th November, is one of the most beautiful and entertaining events we have in Autumn, where people throughout England celebrate the capture of Guy Fawkes with firework displays and by gathering around or lighting bonfires.


The history of this celebration dates back to Elizabethan times (1533 –1603). Queen Elizabeth was protestant and spent most of her sovereignty persecuting the Catholics. When she died in 1603, everyone hoped that her successor, James I, would be more tolerant towards those of Catholic religion, but this was not the case, and the persecutions continued and intensified.Guy Fawkes for Bonfire Night

A group of 5 men, under the leadership of Robert Catesby, decided that something had to be done, and the only way to do this was to resort to some form of violent act: they decided to blow up the Houses of Parliament! Their plan was to store 36 barrels of gunpowder in a cellar under the Houses of Parliament and blow the building up. Boom!

However, some of the conspirators started thinking that innocent people would have got caught up in the explosion, so one of them took it upon himself to write an anonymous letter to a Lord warning him about the plot.

This letter eventually made its way to King James I who ordered for the conspirators to be captured. Guy Fawkes, who was looking after the 36 barrels of gunpowder in the cellars, was found by the king’s men. He was tortured and executed. Once word got round, people in England started to light bonfires to show their delight that the king had been saved.

This tradition has been passed on from generation to generation and on the 5th November, people all over England gather around huge bonfires and watch or set off beautiful fireworks.

If you want to take part in this celebration, there are many venues where firework displays will take place in London. Here is the list of the biggest and most important ones, but beware, you might need to book or pay to get in.

                                                                 Bonfire Night Events in London

Central London

Battersea Park Fireworks 4 Nov

Southwark’s Fireworks Night 5 Nov

South London

Lambeth Fireworks 4 Nov

Beckenham Fireworks 4 Nov

East London

Blackheath Fireworks 4 Nov

Victoria Park Fireworks 5 Nov


North London

Alexandra Palace Fireworks Festival 3-4 Nov

Brent Fireworks Night 4 Nov

Guy Fawkes Festival and Fireworks 4-5 Nov

West London

Superhero Fireworks Spectacular 4 Nov


If you don’t fancy braving the weather on a chilly November night, why not cuddle up on the sofa and watch one of these top 10 bonfire night films.

Bonfire Films

Whatever you decide to do, please be safe and don’t get too close to the bonfire or to the fireworks as they are being lit. Have FUN and send your pictures to:


October 19, 2017
by Bloomsbury International

My Favourite Words: The Definition of Pop

PopHello everyone,

This week I’m going to take a look at one of my favourite words in English: “POP”.
It has so many meanings and you wouldn’t believe how often we use it!

Here are some prime examples:
➢ Pop – a light explosion sound – The champagne bottle popped and everyone cheered.
➢ Pop – when you play with a pimple – I’ve just popped a spot.
➢ Pop – a fizzy soft drink – I’ve drunk so much pop today I feel so bloatedbottles-of-fizzy-drinks
➢ Pop – when something suddenly opens – My button has just popped open.
➢ Pop – when your eyes widen with surprise – My eyes popped when I saw the diamond ring he bought me.
➢ Pop – when you quickly put something small into your mouth – He popped the pill into his mouth and took a sip of water.
➢ Pop into – put something somewhere quickly – She popped her umbrella into her bag before leaving the house.
➢ Pop by – when somebody comes and visits you without notice – Susan just popped by for some sugar.
➢ Pop round – go and visit somebody without notice – I’m just going to pop round Jack’s to borrow some sugar.
➢ Pop back – return from a somewhere soon – Jack will pop back in a minute!Pregnant woman laughing
➢ Pop out – go somewhere for a few minutes – I’m sorry, Mr Jones is unavailable at the moment. He’s just popped out.
➢ Pop out – go somewhere quickly without notice – Sorry, I just need to pop out for a minute.
➢ Pop out – appear suddenly – That bear just popped out from nowhere.
➢ Take a pop at somebody – criticise someone to his face/or in public – I was so surprised when the train driver took a pop at me because I had bought the wrong ticket.
➢ A pop – in every occasion or circumstance – She gets paid £50 a pop.
➢ Ready to pop – when someone has eaten too much or is about to give birth – I am so full I might pop! I am so big now…. I can’t wait to have this baby! I’m ready to pop!

Can you think of any others?
Well, I hope you enjoyed this blog entry and will pop back for some more. I’m popping away for a minute now and will probably pop downstairs to get a coffee. I need to get away from this computer otherwise my eyes will pop! See you soon!