Jack’s Music Box

Jack's Music Box

Courtney Barnett – Depreston

It’s been a while but we are finally back with another Jack’s Music Box, the best Music/English teaching blog series available this side of the Guadalquivir. This week we are looking at Depreston by Australian singer songwriter Courtney Barnett.

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Originally a guitarist in Australian bands like Rapid Transit and Immigrant Union before becoming a solo star, Barnett first garnered international attention with the release of her 2012 EP I’ve Got  A Friend Called Emily Ferris along with her 2013 double EP A Sea of Split Peas.

Barnett went onto achieve widespread critical attention with her debut album Sometimes I Sit and Think and Sometimes I Just Sit in 2015.

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I chose Depreston for this week’s song as it is a good introduction to Courtney Barnett’s unique style as she often sings in her typical Australian accent in a very conversational way.

The song is about buying a bungalow in Preston, a dreary suburb of Melbourne.

Enjoy!

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Interesting Vocabulary

Percolator: A pot used for brewing coffee

Bungalow: A one storey house.

Cul De Sac: A dead end residential street.

It’s Going Pretty Cheap: It’s selling for pretty cheap.

Deceased Estate: A dead person’s house.

The Lyrics

You said we should look out further, I guess it wouldn’t hurt us

We don’t have to be around all these coffee shops
Now we’ve got that percolator, never made a latte greater
I’m saving twenty three dollars a week

We drive to a house in Preston, we see police arresting
A man with his hand in a bag
How’s that for first impressions? This place seems depressing
It’s a Californian bungalow in a cul-de-sac

It’s got a lovely garden, a garage for two cars to park in
Or a lot of room for storage if you’ve just got one
And it’s going pretty cheap you say, well it’s a deceased estate
Aren’t the pressed metal ceilings great?

Then I see the handrail in the shower, a collection of those canisters for coffee tea and flour
And a photo of a young man in a van in Vietnam
And I can’t think of floorboards anymore, whether the front room faces south or north
And I wonder what she bought it for

If you’ve got a spare half a million
You could knock it down and start rebuilding

If you’ve got a spare half a million
You could knock it down and start rebuilding

If you’ve got a spare half a million
You could knock it down and start rebuilding

If you’ve got a spare half a million
You could knock it down and start rebuilding

If you’ve got a spare half a million
You could knock it down and start rebuilding

If you’ve got a spare half a million
You could knock it down and start rebuilding

If you enjoyed the song check out our Teachify Courtney Barnett playlist below!

See you again for another installment of Jack’s Music Box.

Academia de inglés Sevilla

5 quick tips to help you learn English faster

5 Quick Tips To Help You Learn English Faster!

Cursos intensivos de inglés Sevilla

A lot of our students ask us what are some of the best ways to make the most of their free time in order to learn English. We always suggest that students try their best to immerse themselves in English.

Now, this can be quite difficult especially when you live in a non English speaking country like Spain.. So we thought we would compile this list of handy things you can do to help practice your English whilst you are at home.

1. Watch Tv Series/Netflix in English

For many of you this shouldn’t be too difficult. Many of our students already watch plenty of American/English Tv series, however unfortunately many of them watch these series with Spanish subtitles or even worse… Dubbed over in Spanish!

This is a great shame as watching Netflix/tv can be very helpful in learning languages especially in regards to pronunciation and listening.

 

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That said,I know watching an entire episode of ‘Peaky Blinders’ in English can seem slightly daunting. I would suggest starting with something easier with shorter episodes, for example ‘Friends’ or ‘The Simpsons,’ and for longer episodes or films (45 mins +) try having the English audio with English subtitles. This will make it much easier to follow for extended periods of time.  

If you don’t own a tv or a Netflix subscription, Youtube is also a great resource for entertaining/interesting videos.

Ensure that you are actually interested in the video you are watching, this will stop you from inadvertently ‘zoning out’ or getting distracted.

2. Listen to Podcasts

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Another thing that we suggest for students to do is to start listening to Podcasts in English as this will help improve your overall listening ability.

At Teachify we actually create our own weekly podcasts which review recent vocabulary and topics which we have studied in class.

3. Listen to English Songs

I am sure that a lot of you already listen to plenty of music in English.

My advice would be to begin to really start listening out for the lyrics and trying your best to translate them in your head.

If you are really struggling you could always get the lyrics up and read through them. This is a great one to improve your pronunciation, grammar structures and vocabulary!

4. Read in English

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Perhaps the best thing you can do to learn another language is to begin reading in that language.

Maybe start off reading children’s books (these are often very easy to understand and follow, this will teach you plenty of basic vocabulary) then maybe move onto reading the daily news in English and when you feel ready maybe try tackling some longer novels!

Once again, make sure that you are actually interested in the topic of the article/book you are reading. This will make it much easier to concentrate.

5. Learning applications

No need to devote to much time to this step, with just 5/10 minutes a day on these programs and you should see some improvement. Some other great online resources for learning English

–        Memrise

–        BBC Learning English

–        Wordable

–        Quiz your English

–        British Council.

So, if you liked these reasons, subscribe below to find out 5 more reasons why you should learn English!

Teachify Teacher Chit-Chat Love

Teachify Teacher Chit-Chat Love

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It would appear that love has indeed been in the air at Teachify in May as we’ve been discussing a number of topics to do with romance, dating, marriage and many more.  You may think of the mythical Bob Marley and wonder in his famous words…is this love, is this love, is this love.  Well, here at Teachify for one month only, yes, it is love. 

What is the topic of the month?

So, just to clarify, each month we take inspiration from a general topic and then we focus on said topic by discussing many aspects, reviewing relevant vocabulary and debate some of the most interesting questions we consider related to that topic.  After that, we wrap everything up by having a quick chitchat to go through how we feel when it comes to that topic. 

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What should you do now then?

The answer is right before your eyes, it’s a no-brainer. 

If you’re already one of our students and you’ve studied some of the lesson plans then I’d begin by trying to recall the target vocabulary, phrasal verbs and idioms. 

Then the next logical step is to watch the chitchat attached and if you have any issues understanding anything we say, I suggest rewatching the video as many times as possible until you master the new terms. 

At the same time, you could use applications like wordreference, reverso or linguee to check the meaning and translation of these difficult words. 

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It's okay! we know it can be difficult to understand.

In case that’s not enough, or if you simply want to see some synonyms or further explanation then don’t worry, below you have a list of the words and phrases we believe to be more unusual along with a brief explanation in English. 

Vocabulary & phrasal verbs

  • Love at first sight: falling in love with someone the moment you meet them.
  • Shallow: the opposite of deep, or someone who only focuses on someone’s appearance.
  • Never judge a book by its cover: don’t make a decision about someone if you don’t know them.
  • Fancy: to want, to find attractive or as an adjective it means posh or extravagant.
  • Cut corners: to not do things properly.
  • Woo: to flirt with or conquer romantically.
  • Intrigued: interested, curious.
  • Bound to: guaranteed to or at least almost guaranteed to.
  • Fallout: argument or fight.
  • Fall out with: have an argument with someone.
  • Make up: a very versatile phrasal verb however in the video and talking about love it means to forgive someone or make peace with someone.
  • Do your make up: apply make-up.

5 reasons why you should learn English

5 Reasons why you should learn English

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As English teachers working in Sevilla, we are often asked the question, “Why should I learn English?”

So we thought we would compile some of the best reasons to learn Engish!

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Cursos

1. It Will Improve Your Career Prospects.

Let’s face it, whether you like it or not English is THE international language of business, science, aviation, computers, diplomacy, and tourism plus many other sectors.

At some of the companies we work with in Sevilla, they ONLY use English in the office which can put you at a major disadvantage if you don’t speak the language!

In addition, plenty of our private students come to us because they need help improving their English for job interviews in Spain.

It seems that in the modern world businesses are under more and more pressure to ‘internationalise’ their head offices.

This means that knowing English as a second language will give you a real step up from the competition if you are in the market for a new job.

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2. It will improve your Networking ability.

With English fast becoming the global language of the future, you’ll feel even more connected to the world around you.

By learning English you will find yourself even more connected to popular culture, trends and issues in the world around you along with the ability to better keep up with current events.

3. English will improve your educational prospects.

If you speak English you will be able to find Educational courses all over the world instead of just limiting yourself to studying in Spanish speaking countries.

This can be a major advantage as some of the most prestigious universities in the world are located in English speaking countries.

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Inglés

Cursos intensivos de inglés Sevilla

4. English is the primary language of Media.

Have you ever wished that you could understand the lyrics to your favorite Beatles song? Or wished that you didn’t need to turn on subtitles to watch your favourite English Language Netflix Films/tv shows?

As great as series like the Simpsons are in Spanish they are infinitely superior in their native language!

5.English is the Language of the Internet

Perhaps even more importantly than being the language of the Media however, is that English is the language of the internet!

So you may  only be able to access certain sites or find certain documents online in English. So it’s fair to say that learning English will provide you with more access to knowledge around the world. 

So, if you liked these reasons, subscribe below to find out 5 more reasons why you should learn English!

English Cooking Show

Masterchef Sevilla with Daniel Del Toro!

After missing out on various job opportunities promoting Spanish products overseas due to his non existent English, Sevillano chef Daniel Del Toro was looking to make a change.

Daniel reasoned that he had to vastly improve his English in order to have any chance of getting these jobs.

Why did we want to take on the challenge?

Teaching a student English from scratch is no short order. Luckily Teachifyer Micael Soto was up to the task.

Looking for a challenge Micael reached out to Daniel with a suggestion, a 3 month intensive English course which would culminate in a live cooking demonstration at our offices at iSspaces.

It took some persuading but eventually we managed to finally get Daniel to relent and begin his 3 month English course.

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Inglés

What were the difficulties teaching Daniel?

Teaching a student like Daniel was a totally new challenge for me as he is such a busy man, it was sometimes difficult for us to schedule the necessary classes for him, that said his passion and eagerness was very refreshing. There are very few students that I have taught who are as motivated as Danny! Although perhaps we didn’t manage to get in quite as many hours in as we had hoped I certainly feel that we’ve managed to provide him with the essentials needed for the big cooking show.

Micael Soto
Daniel del Toro da clases de inglés con Teachify

Taking into account my level of English was minus zero and now I am able to hold a basic conversation, I think the classes went pretty well! Although, I should study a lot more!! Haha

DANIEL DEL TORO

Academia de inglés Sevilla

So the big day is almost upon us! For the big cooking show Daniel will prepare two recipes aimed at the busy professional who wants to eat healthily, however does not have time to cook mid week.

Both recipes are quick, healthy and can be prepared in an office with minimal equipment. The demonstration will be not only be a showcase for Daniels famous cooking skills, but also his new English ability!

Where is the cooking show?

So if you are a professional based in Sevilla and are keen to improve your cooking skills along with a good opportunity to utilise your English come on down to iSspaces on Monday 3rd June!