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This week we’ve been having a Christmas party for our students, and making sure the heating is on full (it’s very cold here in Britain at the moment!).

So, let’s take a look at some of the interesting things that have been happening in the news over the last week:


  • Lovers of coincidence, after a photographer in Canada found a host of people who looked like one another and took pictures of them with their ‘twin’.
    Read it here:

  • People who are easily amused, as a new craze is apparently sweeping the internet – posing comically with statues.
    See the pictures here:


  • Patients in 2 hospitals in Australia, as an unqualified 17-year-old has been caught posing as a doctor!
    Read the story here:

  • The British public, after website Confused.com did an experiment with an actor playing a drunk man, who then asked 50 different people to help him into his car. Drink-driving is a huge problem in the UK at Christmas, and unfortunately, in this experiment, two-thirds of those asked helped the man get in his vehicle.
    See the video here:


"Once, during Prohibition, I was forced to live for days on nothing but food and water." – W.C. Fields


  • More people are killed by donkeys annually than die in plane crashes
  • Before the invention of the eraser, bread was used to remove pencil marks
  • In Alaska, it is illegal to look at a moose from a flying vehicle
  • Karate actually originated in India, but was developed in China


As it’s almost the end of the year, this week we have a list of the top 10 most-watched adverts on Youtube.


OK, enough of the news. Here are the answers to last week's homework about Body Idioms:


1. I love my old car but I'm having more and more problems with it. I think it's ON ITS LAST LEGS
2. My girlfriend and I have always argued quite a lot but the situation CAME TO A HEAD last week when she accused me of lying.
3. I'm sorry Olga but we have to FACE THE FACT that we are no longer getting on.
4. I can't trust you any more Olga - you been talking about me BEHIND MY BACK
5. What's the matter with you Olga ? You've changed since your promotion. I think power has GONE TO YOUR HEAD
6. Bob's an excellent chairman. He's AN OLD HAND at controlling difficult people.
7. Ask Paul to help you. He's got A GOOD HEAD for figures.
8. There's nothing I can do to help. I'm afraid MY HANDS are tied.
9. I'm afraid I'm not coming to the concert. You know I am not ken on classical music and I COULDN'T FACE 3 hours of it!
10. I know Jane's in a lot of pain, but she puts A BRAVE FACE on it.
11. Richard's businesses just go from strength to strength. You know, you've got to HAND IT TO HIM
12. We'll have to go the bank and ask for more money. We just can't go on burying OUR HEADS in the sand any longer.


1. I'd GIVE my right arm for it.
2. I PUT my foot in it.
3. I'm only PULLING your leg.
4. I can't PUT my finger on it.
5. The situation CAME to a head.
6. Power has GONE to his head.
7. It COSTS an arm and a leg.
8. He just BURIED his head in the sand.
9. Come on, Olga, GET it off your chest !

And the riddle:

It started back in Roman days,
The massive walls, the leafy ways.
New houses, bridges, towers that soar,
All use the rock that you can pour.

The answer is CONCRETE.

This week's homework is called "Breaking Idioms":


Place the following words in the definitions below:

  • CHIP
  • MEND

1. My car windscreen just ????? when the stone hit it.
2. I am so disappointed. I posted some crystal glasses to Olga but they arrived in pieces even though I marked the parcel "??????".
3. I didn't see the traffic lights change and just ?????? straight into the back of a brand new Mercedes.
4. A ?????? is a small piece broken off a cup or a piece of china.
5. My key ?????? in two when I tried to open the door.
6. When I opened the box, there was a ?????? in one of the cups.
7. "Please don't ????? the goods. All breakages must be paid for".
8. The driver of the Toyota had no hope. His car was ????? between two huge lorries.
9. I tried to ?????? the plug in the kitchen and almost got electrocuted.


Match the following idioms with the meanings below:

1. He's FEELING FRAGILE this morning. He had a late night.
2. He WENT TO PIECES after his mother's death.
3. Olga's A SMASHING PERSON and a great friend
4. Paul's AT BREAKING POINT. You should see how much work he has.
5. He NEEDS CAREFUL HANDLING. He's brilliant but he's very sensitive to criticism.
6. "Do it yourself if you think you can do better!", Olga SNAPPED back.
7. After two days of interrogation, John CRACKED and confessed to the murder.

a. He's under too much pressure.
b. You've got to be careful how you treat him.
c. He started to cry / had a nervous breakdown.
d. Olga's parents were divorced.
e. He's not very well.
f. Olga's very nice.
g. He started to tell the truth.
h. Olga replied angrily.

And the riddle for this week:

It's in between the things that be,
From atoms up to galaxies.
Rockets help you get around,
Very far above the ground.

Have a lovely weekend and we will write again next Friday.

Best wishes

Paul & Jill

Paul Stevens - Director (based in San Diego, USA)
Jill Tyler - General Manager (based in Plymouth, UK)

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