Cats and Dogs - a blog for English learners

Occasional tips and tricks to help you learn more than the useless phrase "it's raining cats and dogs", brought to you by Craig Meulen, an English teacher in Germany. (Blog discontinued.)

November 22, 2008

Europe's Easy Reading Corner

Here you will find booklets that explain, as simply as possible, what the European Union is and what it does.

You can also find maps, posters and postcards and booklets about the EU for young people.

(And if you are feeling lazy or if the English is sometimes too difficult for you, there are other publications in 22 official languages of the European Union which can be read in full at this site.)

A couple of things that particularly caught my eye:

A Panorama of the EU - What do we do?

A Panorama of the EU (as a colour leaflet to download)

Europe in 12 Lessons

Travelling in Europe - practical advice and tips

(A big thank you to Dr. Andreas B├╝sing for this tip.)

November 20, 2008

Find that word on the 'tip of your tongue'

This site is a new idea that is very useful.

If I say a word is 'on the tip of my tongue', it means I am thinking of a word but can't remember it exactly. Perhaps I know the first letters, or the meaning, but can't remember the whole word.

For example, what's that word that I can use if something has irritated me, but I'm not angry. I think it begins with 'a' like angry .....

Go to "Tip of My Tongue".
Type 'a' in "Partial Word - Starts with"
Type 'irritate' in 'Word Meaning - Word 1'

There are 22 results, and the word that was on the tip of my tongue is there halfway down the list "annoy" - "I'm annoyed!"


(Thanks again to Gabi for this tip.)

November 17, 2008

Learning new words - with Pons or LEO

The dictionary websites and LEO are very popular, so now one of the large publishing houses, PONS, has reacted and it has created its own online dictionary:

It also has 'Lexitrainer', which is an integrated program to help you learn the new words that you look up in the dictionary.

But, watch out! You have a lot of choice now, because LEO has also updated its vocabulary trainer and made it much better. Check it out - the Sprachtrainer.