Newspaper Article

In order to become more aware of what is going on around the world, our teacher Pilar, asked us to prepare an oral presentation on an article.

I chose: “Mexico’s Colima volcano erupts, forcing evacuation


Mexico’s Colima volcano erupts, forcing evacuation

A volcano has erupted in western Mexico, spewing black clouds of ash over 2.8km (1.7 miles) into the sky and forcing the evacuation of inhabitants.

The eruption from Colima volcano, also known as the “Volcano of Fire”, prompted authorities to seal off a 12km area around the crater on 11 July, AFP reports.

Residents living near the volcano were evacuated and the airport of Colima City was closed to private and commercial flights due to the plumes of ash ejected by the volcano.

“The communities in this 12km radius are very small and don’t exceed 800 inhabitants. They have all been evacuated,” national civil protection co-ordinator Luis Felipe Puente was quoted as saying.

Ash from the volcano, which began erupting on 10 July, spread as far as Colima City over 30km away.

One village near the mountain, Yerbabuena, was reportedly covered in up to 5cm of ash.

Mexico’s interior ministry warned that the volcanic activity in the region was similar to a major eruption in 1913.

AFP cited the ministry as saying that one of three scenarios was possible: a drop in volcanic activity over the coming days, a collapse of the volcano’s dome or a 1913-like explosion.

Colima is one of the most active volcanoes in North America, having erupted more than 40 times since 1576.

The volcano lies some 470km away from Mexico City.

Online Test

Since we are reading “Face” by Benjamin Zephaniah in our Language class, our teacher, Pilar, told us to do this online test on her blog.

Task 1.

Choose a poem by Benjamin Zephaniah and prepare an analysis. Write a paragraph explaining why you have chosen it. Focus on the message of the poem and analyse at least two literacy devices present in the poem. Then, find a picture to illustrate the ideas present in the poem and post it on your blog as well. If you are good at drawing you can also make a drawing of the poem yourself. Take a picture of it and upload it too.

Task 2.

Choose one of the following tasks and write about it.

1. Write your own poem on one of the typical topics present in Zephaniah. Include at least one form of Inversion and highlight it. (two stanzas and a name)

2. Write an interview  to Benjamin Zephniah as if you were a reporter. Include at least one form of emphasis and highlight it. ( between 10-12 exchanges)


Task 1.

The poem I chose is “Neighbours”:

I am the type you are supposed to fear
Black and foreign
Big and dreadlocks
An uneducated grass eater.

I talk in tongues
I chant at night
I appear anywhere,
I sleep with lions
And when the moon gets me
I am a Wailer.

I am moving in
Next door to you
So you can get to know me,
You will see my shadow
In the bathroom window,
My aromas will occupy
Your space,
Our ball will be in your court.
How will you feel?

You should feel good
You have been chosen.

I am the type you are supposed to love
Dark and mysterious
Tall and natural
Thinking, tea total.
I talk in schools
I sing on TV
I am in the papers,
I keep cool cats

And when the sun is shining
I go Carnival.

I chose this poem because I really liked that it dealt with the topics of discrimination, racism, social stereotypes and shallowness. In addition, what really caught my attention was that the voice is a person who is being criticized and discriminated. Although he is very well aware of it, he wants to prove that, while he knows everything that is being said about him, his neighbour should give him a chance to change his/her mind and convince him/her that he is “the type you are supposed to love” and feel blessed for having met him.

As regards, literary terms, alliteration is present when the poet says “I talk in tongues, I chant at night“; and there isn’t a rhyme scheme but in some parts rhyme is present, for example: “window” and “shadow”, or “fear” and “eater”.


This is sort of the scene that I pictured in my head of what the voice is describing in the poem. A person moving next door of whom you’ve made a stereotype in your head from his or her looks, therefore, who you don’t trust very much.


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Task 2.


As I was walking down the street,

I spotted some black men.

Without even thinking it,

I approached a couple of policemen.


Next to the officers I remained still.

But no sooner had they walked away,

than I realized how judgemental I had been,

And eventually left with a feeling of great dismay.


Analysing An Astrologer´s Day – Task

Our teacher, Pilar, had asked us to analyse certain topics of the story “An Astrologer’s Day”, but since we hadn’t understood the task very well, she asked us to do it again for homework as an opinion piece.

This is mine:

“An Astrologer’s Day” is a short story about a man who works as an astrologer but is actually a fraud. He doesn’t really study the movement and position of the sun, moon, planets and stars to then, describe the effect that these have on people and their lives. “He knew no more of what was going to happen to others than he knew what was going to happen to himself next minute”, this quote conveys that he had no idea how to predict people’s future since he couldn’t even predict his own, or even how to predict what was going on in people’s lives. But one day, a client approaches his stand and asks him to ‘say stuff about him’, but not the typical open answers that everyone can relate to. He wanted more personal stuff that could actually prove that he was an astrologer. What happened was that the men had already met. In their youngerster days they had fought in a bar and since Guru Nayak, the customer, was stabbed and left to die, he had come to that town after many years looking for revenge.

The story takes place in India and we can figure this out since there are words from the Indian dialect, such as “jaggery” and “pyol”, or because annas and rupees are mentioned and they were the currency used in India, or because it is mentioned that the astrologer wore a “saffron-coloured turban around his head” and finally, because a “cheroot” is mentioned which is a type of Indian cigar.

In the story you can also find ironic elements such as the astrologer managing to get away with what he told people since they were so gullible, or how the client had been talking to his aggressor this whole time and never even suspected anything, and it’s also ironic how by chance or destiny, Guru Nayak approached to him. Which is actually one of the themes: the irony of fate, as well as crime and guilt and human greed.

Reporting Dialogues

In Language we studied reported speech. Therefore, our teacher, Pilar, recorded some words and asked us to report them using intrductory verbs.

– Pilar apologised for being late and explained that she had lost track of time.

– She begged not to be punished.

– She claimed she had learnt a lesson.

– She promised not to do it again.

– She confessed to have been having a lot of fun.

– She admitted to have been laughing and dancing.

An Astrologer’s Day: Reading Guide

Since, in Language, we read “An Astrologer’s Day”, we had to answer the following questions:

1)What is Astrology? Do you believe in it? What about Magic? Have you ever had any magical encounter?

Astrology, as the dictionary says, is the study of the movements and positions of the sun, moon, planets, and stars, and the skill of describing the effect that some people believe these have on the character and lives of people.
I personally don’t believe in astrology as I’ve never witnessed somone’s life to change because of the stars and I don’t believe in magic either since when someone mentions it, the first things that pop into my mind are Harry Potter, fairy tales or wizards, and besides, I’ve never had a magical encounter. Although my mom once told me that when she was pregnant of me, a gypsy ‘read her hand’ and told her that I was going to be a girl (my mom didn’t know yet) and that I should be named Gema.

And we had to create a scene that could be inserted in a logical way in the story.

This the one I created.