Fireworks Lesson Plan – ESL Chemistry in Action

Hello everybody!

what is better than the sharing? Herewith you can find a nice activity (in this case in the form of an English test) to teach English through a CLIL activity about Fireworks. Personally, these activities were intended as a conclusion set of activities because, in the classroom, we have worked a lot on the specific vocabulary and on Chemistry in action thanks to my Chemistry colleague.

Hope it can be useful for you!

Enjoy with your classes.

Mrs Dorigo







Reading A Book or An Hour of Code?

Do you think philosophy is not your cup of tea or reading books too demanding? So why not coding? Go coding, I did it!

It is not so easy to explain to a bunch of students not to be afraid of computers. I mean. If we talk about computational thinking, they promptly think about super smart IT geek geniuses living somewhere in a real-virtual distant far away place, called Sylicon Valley, that are really fond of Maths.

But what is computational thinking? I won’t give here an academic definition. But it has none to do with computers. Just the reverse! The word Computer comes from the latin computare, to calculate.  So computers are tools used to “calculate”. Someone behind them give them a set of instructions so that they can “computare”.

These persons, called coders, give computers all useful information to reach a task, just step by step, teaching them how to create something, in the easiest and simplest way. Just like these machines were little babies learning how to walk.

In a broad sense, you compute and code every day of your life: preparing your daily breakfast, setting the table, organizing your work, choosing a specific fizzy drink among many, a.s.o. It is a question of priorities and decisions you make. The value you decide to give to things all around you.

So I believe it is important to learn how to compute, to code, to evaluate and to judge things. Someone can do it without any help, they are natural. Someone else needs help. They need an outline, so that they can organize not only their daily lives, but also their inner thoughts.

I am one of those persons. If I am the person I am, it is thanks to some teachers that thought me how to evaluate, how to organize my thoughts, all in all how to code. But when I did it, it was thanks to philosophy and by reading books.

But, if you think philosophy is not your cup of tea or reading books too demanding, why not coding? Go coding, I did it!

Well, I am still reading books. Like, a lot of them. I am a serial reader, I can’t stop!




Teachers Are Rock Stars

Re5dOKxdre0RF-9IUVUnQL3_6Nb2ctK0kGGLjMcTaedMxIz0Ci5EuJQqEjGZQSIHO29EDDHUqzG84kT0dfNyRA=w506-h285-nNever thought of myself as a Rock star.

I love this new image of me 😊 and I believe this blog post is amazing. If possible, read it!
Mrs. D.

Nerdy Book Club

Teachers are rock stars. And librarians. You’re all rock stars. Every member of the Nerdy Book Club rocks. I’ve been tagged (only a couple times) in tweets with the hashtag #AuthorsAreRockStars, to which I scoff, “P’shaw!” I’m just a normal guy. We all shop at the same Target. We probably use the same toilet paper (brand, not square). I just happened to be fortunate enough to get a book published.

You, on the other hand … I don’t know how you do it. You stand up every day in front of dozens, if not hundreds of students. You spend your “free” time planning lessons, grading assignments, writing reports, responding to student/parent/teacher/administrator emails, and trying to stay on top of today’s bureaucratic educational standards and responsibilities (but you don’t need me to tell you what it is you do – you already know).

Yet somehow you manage to read almost…

View original post 600 more words

school for succeeding in life?

Hi there! It is not Mrs. D. writing here. But one of her students in class 5 (grade 13). So, just to explain the topic I would like to condider today: students’ lives. In a broad sense: mainstream school for life?02obama.600

Today, guys, we are going to talk about Obama’s school life.
During an interview on a talk show called “The Real”, Michelle Obama talked about his man. Did you know that Barack Obama wasn’t a good student? She said that he didn’t do anything while he was attending High School. He only started being serious when he  went to Columbia University and met her. Michelle also underlined the fact that he wasn’t good at school because he didn’t have a dad. What a sad thing…
So guys, do you think school is important for succeeding in life? Can anyone succeed in life? What is personal success, anyway? Money? Public recognition?  Or something more and more valuable than that?
Is there perhaps a link between a person’s “psychological traits” and his/her success?
Let me help you here. Personally, I believe that the link between them exist, only strong and very determined people are supposed to succeed and doing big things in life.

And you, what is your point of view on the matter? What do you consider success in life? What are failures instead? And which role does school play in all this?


I will be honored if you  can post your opinion on this PADLET!

teaching. and learning.

So. Today it is raining cats and dogs again. I am forced at home, but as usual I can’t really rest. And as usual I start organizing new lesson plans, searching for new materials and, in general, I start reflecting upon my job.

Unfortunately, I don’t have time to tell you about my personal school experience as a student (at school and University) and about my teachers in general. However, I am here to listen to your opinions and personal views on what are the qualities and characteristics of a great teacher for you. Well, if not a great teacher, a passable good teacher. Do you think there are really bad and good teachers? Have you ever had difficult experiences in front of a specific teacher? Have you ever met a really inspiring teacher?

read the following article to get inspired

21st century teacher

Waiting for your opinion guys! I am really curious and, above all, I think I can learn from your precious points of view.



poetry for life

Today it has been raining cats and dogs. So that was a great chance for me to rest, really rest. I read a lot: my currently book (Fahrenheit 451) and then through the internet. As I am keeping this blog for my classes (even if it seems they don’t appreciate it much though, but I am working on it – I am a never give up kind of person), well, I said I am keeping this blog for my students, but I love going through the WordPress reader sections and also the Discover section (made for me by humans who love reading 🙂 – wish I was one of them! Can I work for WordPress?). While I was skipping the thousands of super awesome blogs in the blogosphere I stopped here: There You Are

And so, here again. POETRY. When I was at the High school, teachers made me hate it. It was only a compulsory activity to me. I couldn’t enjoy it at all. Then, after many years I discovered Hikmet, and I finally fell in love with human words, that can be deadly weapons but also soothing medicine. It was an epiphany to me.  Not that I read poetry every day, but I have some poetry books on my nightstand that I read once in a blue moon, or when I need to. Just a sonnet is ok to feel better or to find an enlightment after a difficult day.

The problem is… I would like to teach some English poems at school, a vocational High School. WHAT DO YOU THINK BLOGGERS? Should I? And which poem should I pick up? Shakespeare?  Larkin? Or is it a waste of time (what my students will for sure say)?





Limitless. Fearless.

video English subtitles

video Italian subtitles

Who doesn’t know who Steve Jobs was? I believe all around the world Steve Jobs’ life can be considered as a source of inspiration that can make us achieve our own success. Personally, I think that his uniquely creative and acute mind, his will power to pursue a dream to its very conclusion were the secrets of his success and prosperity. So, much may be learnt and much energy may be drawn from his example.

Recently I had the chance to see the now world famous speech he gave in 2005 at Standford University. “Stay hungry, stay foolish” was his motto. It might, however, come as a surprise to many that for much of his formative years he felt himself without a clear goal and direction. Maybe he couldn’t even understand the meaning of his own motto. He once admitted it on the speech, stating that he even considered academia as a poor way of spending his parents’ hard-earned money. This is why he saw fit to attend only the classes which lead more immediately to a job and an income without any further interests. However, these classes made him learn things that “turned out to be priceless later on” (from his own words). This means that even if at the beginning of his career he did not do the job he wanted to, this had not stopped him. Nothing had been so powerful to stop him. When Apple became an important society with four thousand employees, Steve Jobs got fired from his own company. Even after this bad experience, nothing stopped him and he had success again.

All in all, isn’t it there a lesson to be learnt? Do we sufficiently believe in ourselves? What can really stop us? Is it only because we are apparently unlucky or we just justify our failures with self pity  that we can’t be successful in our life? I personally believe that perhaps it is only a self-confidence matter. We are never really unlucky even if it is important to ask ourselves these essential questions. But I am convinced that one person should always be fearless and curious enough and positively “insane” to live new experiences. These will lead for sure to an inner enrichment.

All things considered, nobody can tell us which are our limits. Stay hungry, stay foolish! I will keep it in mind after High School.