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How to write a formal letter

S’escriuen cartes formals a escoles, facultats i universitats, agències governamentals i empreses. En una redacció d’una carta formal no es poden utilitzar expressions informals o contraccions.*

    • Dear Mr/Mrs/Ms/Miss + cognom si coneixent el nom
  • 2n i 3r paràgraf
    • Explica el motiu de la carta
    • Explica les teves peticions, punts o arguments
    • Utilitza un paràgraf per a cada punt
  • Comentaris finals
  • Acomiadament
    • Yours sincerely + nom
    • Yours faithfully si no coneixes el nom


Expressions útils

  • I would be interesed to know...
  • I wonder if you could send me...


I am writing in response to (you advertisement for...)...* I would like to apply for the post of


Could you tell me when/if will...

OBJECTIUS DE LA CARTA* I am writing to ask about

  • The would like to enrol on this course so (that) they can study...
  • I am writing in order to explain...
  • Please arrive on time so as not to mics the start


Exemple of formal letter

I am writing to enquire about the Spain Exchange programme which was advertised in the Oxon Observer on 9th October. I would be grateful if you could send me further information about your winter courses. In addition, I have a few specific queries.

First to all, I have a twin brother. Would it be possible for us to find accomodation with the same family? Please would you send us information about the price for moth if my brother and I shared a room. Secondly, could you let my know how long your programme are? We would like to enrol for two moths, if possible.

I look forward to hearing from you

Yours faithfully

Describe yourself

  • Paragraph 1: name, nationality, age, family, work / study
  • Paragraph 2: physical appearance
  • Paragraph 3: personality
  • Paragraph 4: Hobbies and interesting


My name's Raúl, I'm from Spain and live in Barcelona, a beautiful city that is surroeunded by sea and mountains. I'm 34 years old. Nowdays I haven't got a job, I'm trying to change my job. At the past I worked as an electrecian but recently I have obtained a certificate in information technology.

I'm going to tell you about myself. I'm blonde. I have short hair and brown eyes. I'm thin and but I have never been considered attractive.

I'm also an amunsing person. I'm hard-working and sometimes too serious.

In my free time I love playing football. But I have a problem in my legs and now I can't play football. Now in my free time I watch films and study of information technology.

Your favourite holiday photo

  • Wath's the title of your photo.
    • The title of this photo i “The Abyss of Helt”. This name is taken from “Lord of the Rings”
  • Who took it? When? Where?
    • This photo was taken by myself, at Holy Week of 2012 in National Park of Ordesa, Huesca. In the photo we can see the north face of “The Lost Mountain”, more specifically one of the many roads to climb.
  • Whas was happening when you took the photo?
    • When I took this photo, I was going ahead of the group I think this place is wonderful.
  • Who or what is in the photo?
    • I don't know who is the man in the photo but, I couldn't resist the temptation or immortalizing the moment, thas was impossible.


My nightmare journey

  • Paragraph 1: When was the journey? Where were you going? Who with? Why?
  • Paragraph 2: When went wrong? What happened?
  • Paragraph 3: What happened in the end?


A nightmare journey I remember was two years ago. I was going to the airport with my girlfriend. We were going to Venecia on holiday for a weekend and we had to be at Barcelona Airport two hours before the flight.

We got to the airport with plenty of time, but found a strange situation. The people were running form side to the other and seemed nervous. When we went to the check-in desk the woman said the had air controllers strike in airport and we had to run to our plane.

I would say that we were sitting one hour inside the plane and finally all crew ended up leaving the plane. This trips is till pending.

An e-mail of enquiry

  • Greeting.
  • Reason for writing.
  • Request for information (indirect/direct Questions).
  • Request for something tho be sent.
  • Request for a response.


Expresiones útiles:* I would be interesed to know...

  • I wonder if you could send me...
  • I am writting in response to (your advertisement for)
  • I would like to apply for the post of...
  • Could you tell me when... /if... /will...


Expresiones para objetivo de la carta:* I am writting to ask about...

  • I am writting in order to explain...
  • Please arrive on time so as not to mics the start


Exercise:

Dear Sir or Madem

I am writting to enquire about the photography course.

Firt to all, I would like to know if you have a shedule calendar. I would like to know when your next tennis courses is.

Secondly, I have a little knowledge of photography, could you tell me if there are different course levels and if there is an intermediate course. In addition, I would like to know if all the rooms include a private bathroom, I the room shared?.

I would be grateful if you could sen me this information.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours faithfully.

Personality outlines

Personal information:* My name... / I am from...

  • At the moment, I am... (work / Studies)


Interests and skills:* I enjoy/love/don't mind...

  • I am good at...
  • It'simportant for me...
  • I find it easy...
  • I am able...


Plans for the future:* When I finish my course, I would like...

  • Next year, I plan to...



My name is Raúl Olmedo. I am from Barcelona. At the moment, I am studying to become an advanced system administrator.

I enjoy cooking for my wife and I am good at computers. It is important for me to get a job related to information technology. Also, I am able to work as an electrician but I think that computers are the present and the future of our generation.

When I finish my course, I would love to create an association for helping people to have a computer without spending a lot of money.

Discussion essay

  • Paragraph 1: Introduction.
  • Paragraph 2: Write one or two advantages.
  • Paragraph 3: Write one or two disvantages
  • Paragraph 4: Conclusion-


Almost everybody has a mobile phone. But is it a great invention? I think are both advantages and disavantages.

One advantage is that all the current cell phones have internet. You can manage your emails and you can manage the new social netwokrs. Secondly, the current cell phones are tactile and very easy to use.

On the other hand, children are rude when using their cell phones and social networking. Almost all of them think that this technology doesn't need good maners. Moreover, these cell phones are very expensive.

Therefore, I think that this technology is good, however, It will better when everybody have access to this technology.

Informal mail

Hi Daniel

Thanks for your last letter, I was really interesting to read about Madrid city.

So, How are you? Is you new city as warm as Barcelona? I continue to think that Barcelona is the best city for living. You know Barcelona is a beatiful city that is surrounded by sea and mountains.

Thanks for asking about everyone in the family. Few things have changed since you left, execp the Amazon has contacted me, because they want to advertise on my web site. I'm the happiest man in the world. They want to ask you about your photos, too. Is it not incredible?

Anyway you sister found a new job, she is the new community manager of Desigual, the house of clothing. She is very happy, too.

All is going very well, except that we miss you, of course.

Write soon and tell me when you are coming back.

How to do well in exam

Hello Mr. Bayona, we are going to talk about how to prepare an exam.

-What are you top 3 pieces of advice to do well in exams?

Hello Mr. Olmedo, my first piece of advice is to be as calm as possible. For the second piece of advice, you should take two or three pens. And finally read the questions carefully.

-And what should you avoid when doing exams?

You must not have your mobile phone on and always keep it in your bag. Don't look at the other students for not getting nervous.

-Do you have any tips as how to study for an English exam in particular?

No, but it would be good to read books in English, to learn the connectors, and use expressions to write amazing sentences.

Verbs

Resumen

  • Present = You are / She is.
  • Past Continous = I was reading some books.
  • Past Simple = Audi was founded in 1989 / You were in my house.
  • Past Perfect Continuos = You had been working / She have been working.
  • Past Perfect = You had worked / She had worked.
  • Future Simple = I will play football.
  • Future Continous = I will be working.
  • Future Perfect = I will have worked.



Uso de los verbos correctamente

Modal verbs

Must – have to

Expresan una obligación. A veces se pueden utilizar indistintamente (especialmente en primera persona donde prácticamente tienen el mismo sentido), no obstante existen alguna diferencias.* Must se utiliza con el tiempo presente y futuro.

  • Have to con pasado, presente y futuro.



Time Autoridad Externa Autoridad del emisor
Pasado Had to Had to
Presente Have to Must
Futuro Will have to Must
  • Must: El emisor impone una obligación.
  • Have to: El emisor no impone una obligación, se limita a comunicar una obligación que existe.


Exemples:* (Teacher) You must do your homework. El profesor impone el deber de hacer los deberes.

  • (Student) I have to do my homework. El alumno comunica una obligación que la ha sido impuesta.
  • You must stop making noises. El profesor ordena a sus alumnos.
  • You have to stop smoking. La mujer le recuerda una obligación que ha sido impuesta por el médico.
  • I cannot stay longer. I have to go home. Mis obligaciones familiares me obligan a volver a casa.



Forma interrogativa

Must + sujeto + verbo principal?

Do + sujeto + have to + verbo principal?

Must you leave now?

Do you have to leave now?

Forma negativa

Cuando la oración es negativa el significado de estos dos verbos es diferente:

Musn't. No se debe hacer algo

Don't have to. No es necesario hacer algo

You musn't go to that meeting(no debe ir)

You don't have to go to that meeting. (no es necesario que vaya).

Should

Se utiliza para dar consejos. Se indica que algo es bueno y por lo tanto se debería hacer. Es una recomendación, no una obligación. Tiene menos fuerza impositiva que must y que have to.

If you feel bad should go to the doctor.

También se utiliza para dar una orden de forma adecuada.

Anyone who wants to enter in the conference should show his credentials

Este verbo en “modal” va seguido del infinitivo del verbo principal sin la partícula To.

Se utiliza en pasado, presente y futuro.* I should have finished my report yesterday (pasado)

  • You should help me, I can not do it alone (presente)
  • Tomorrow you should call your parents (futuro)


El pasado se utiliza para indicar algo que se debería haber hecho y no se hizo.

Forma negativa: You shouldn't smoke.

Forma interrogativa: Should I wear a dark suit for the party?

Resumen modal verbs

1. Expresan una obligación algo que hay que hacer.* You must come here immediately.

  • If you want to make a carrer in a company you have to speak English.


2. Consejo. Comprueba la diferencia con la siguente oración.

* Nowdays it is very important to speak English You should do it.


3. Por otra parte, cuando se utiliza must/have to el emisor tiene la convicción de que la obligación va a ser cumplida, mientras que cuando se utiliza should no se sabe si el consejo se va a seguir o no.* We should buy a new car. Es un deseo, no hay seguridad de hacerlo.

  • We must buy a new car. Hay muchas posibilidades de hacerlo.


Verb for suggestions* Must – Obligación

  • Should – Aconsejar
  • Can – Habilidad presente
  • Musn't – Prohibición
  • Could - Formal permission




Present Simple or Present Continous

The simple present tense is often confused with the present continous tense.

The simple present tense:# Habits. Actions which happen regularly (every day, every week)

  1. States. Things which do not often change (opinions and conditions)


Some examples:* Santos always talks about this family – Always is a habit.

  • It rains a lot in Vancouver – This means that it rains often.
  • Bianca lives in Florida – This is a state, because it doesn't change.
  • Martin likes chocolate.


The present continous tense# A temporaty action happing now – Think which is going on rigth now, but it will stop in the future...

  1. A definitive plan for the future – We intend to do, usuallly in the near future.


Some examples:* Jhon is winning the game – Sucede ahora, pero aún no ha acabado.

  • It's raining outside – Llueve ahora, después puede parar.
  • I'm playing soccer tomorow – Plan defenido.



Past simple or past continous

Past simple

Describe una acción pasada ya finalizada.* When I was young I lived in Madrid.



Past continous

Indica que una acción se estaba desarrollando en el pasado. No se dice si la acción acabó o todavía continua.* When the mother came home her husband was playing whit the kids. No se sabe si la acción se finalizó.


Some examples# Yesterday morning, from 8 to 10, I was running (algo rutinario).

  1. Yesterday morning form 8 to 10, I ran (algo diferente, por lo tanto se destaca)


Dos acciones simultáneas # “Past simple” la que finaliza.

  1. “Past continous” esa que tuvo transcurso cuando la primera sucedió.
  • Yesterday evening when you called me I was having a shower.
  • When the parents arrived home the children were watching TV.



Past perfect

Es lo mismo que le “present perfect” pero cogiendo como punto de referencia un momento del pasado.


  • Did you see him when you went to his office? No, he had left.


Indirect questions in an e-mail/letter of enquiry

Indirect questions are polite, longer forms of direct questions. In a e-mail or letter enquiry so should mix both indirect questions and direct questions. Example:* Direct question – What does the lenguage course cover?

  • Indirect questions – Please could you tell me what the lenguage course covers.


Form

Indirect questions are formed of two parts: a polite expression, and a question which has no subject/verb inversion like a normal questions.

Some examples:* Direct. When is your next tennis course)

  • Indirect. I would like to know when your next tennis courses is.


Auxiliary verb “to do”

The auxiliary verb “to do” is used in direct questions when there in no other auxiliary verb. Indirect questions do not use the auxiliary verb. Ex:* Direct. When does the next course start?

  • Indirect. I would like to know when the course starts.


Yes/no questions

We use if/wheter in indirect “yes/no” questions.* Direct. Do all roms include the private rooms.

  • Indirect. I would like to know if/wheter all the rooms include a private bathroom.


Some common polite expressions* I would like to know

  • Would you mind telling me
  • Is there any chance you could
  • Could you tell me
  • Would it be possible for you to
  • I wonder...



Gerundio vs. Infinitivo (to + infinitive)

Usos del gerundio

Después de las preposiciones.* She left without kissing me.

  • We are thinking of going to Italy.


Después de algunos verbos* I enjoy eating out.

  • Do you ming giving me your address?



Como sujeto de la frase* Smoking is bad for you.

  • Skiing is expensive.


Los verbos más frecuentes con gerundio son:

Like, love, hate, enjoy, miss, feel like, mind, finish, risk, practise, put off, stop, siggest, can't help, fance, admit, deny,give up, imagine keep on, spend time, can't stand delay, regret avoid, involve, go on.

Uso del infinitivo

Para dar una respuesta a la pregunta Why?* Why did you stop working? To spend more time with children


Después de los adjetivos.* It's not easy to find a good man.


Después de algunos verbos.* I forgot to phone the bank.

  • She needs to see you urgently.


Los verbos más frecuentes con infinitivo son:

Would like, want, need, decide, hope, arrange, expect, plan, forget, seem, appear, wish, promise, offer, refuse, learn, managa, afford, agree, fail, tend, happen, mean, prepare, pretend threaten, attempt.


Comparative and superlative forms

A igual que en castellano, en inglés cuando queremos comparar dos cosas utilizamos los adjetivos y sus distintos grados; positivo, comparativo y superlativo.* El grado positivo refiere a la forma más simple / A Sunny day - Un día soleado

  • El grado comparativo refiere una cualidad mayor de una cosas respecto de otra / A better day – Un día mejor.
  • El grado superlativo refiere la cualidad en su mayor expresión / Today is the best day of the year – Hoy es el mejor día del año.


Comparative to igualdad

Se forma con el adjetivo intercalado entre la construcción “as … as” (tan...Como) para frases afirmativas y interrogativas y “not so … as” para negativas* Podemos emplear tras el segundo as el pronombre nominativo o acusativo (he, she, his, her)

  • Si se trata de una comparación entre dos verbos, podemos usar la expresión “as much as”(tanto como), tambíen en forma negativa.
    • She doesn't work as much as she should.
  • Cuando la comparación se hace entre dos sustantivos se utiliza as much as para el singular y as many as para el plural
    • I have as much as work my boss.
    • I have as many pencils as you.
  • Si estamos comparando dos sustantivos contables (books, cars, houses,) utilizaremos “as many as” pero si estamos comparando dos sustantivos incontables (madera, tiempo, música) usaremos la constracción “as much as”.
    • We have as many books as them.
    • We has as much space as them.


Comparitivo de inferioridad

Se forma con el adjetivo intercalado entre la construcción “less … than” (menos que), aunque es más usual encontra la comparación de igualdad en forma negativa (que tiene el mismo significado)* He is less yuong than you

  • He is no as young as you (más usado)


Normalmente, se emplea less para incontables y fewer para contables.

Comparativo de superioridad

Se forma de dos modos:

1.- Añadiendo al adjetivo el sufijo -er para el comparativo de superioridad y est para el superlativo.

Big (grande) bigger (más grande) biggest (el más grande)

2. Anteponiendo la palabra “more” para el comparativo de superioridad y “the most” para el comparativo superlativo.

Los adjetivos de una solo sílaba forman el comparativo de superioridad con er y el superlativo con est.* Old, older, the oldest

  • new, newer, the newest
  • dark, darker, the darkest


Los adjetivos de dos sílabas que terminan en “-er -le -ow” y los que tienen el acento prosódico en la última sílaba se forman también con -er y the -est.* Clever, cleverer, the cleverest – listo

  • idle, idler, the idlest, perezoso
  • narrow, narrower, the narrowest, estrecho


El resto de adjetivos de dos sílabas y todos los de tres o más se forman con “more” para el de superioridad y con “the most” para el superlativo.* Interesting, more interesting, the most interesting


Comparativos y superlativos irregulares

Algunos adjetivo forman el comparativo de manera irregulares:* Good, better, the best

  • bad, worse, the worst
  • Far, further, the furtherst, lejano


Consideraciones

  • Cuando un adjetivo termina en e solamente se le añade la r y st para el de superioridad y el superlativo.
  • Cuando terminan en consonante +y se cambia por i
    • Easy, easier, the easiest
  • Si termina en consonante predecida de una sola vocal se duplica la consonante
    • Big, Bigger, Biggest
  • Cuando la comparación se realiza entre dos adjetivos se usa more. She is more funny than happy.
  • La expresión del castellano “cada vez más” equivale en ingles a los dos comparativos el adejtivo.
    • The film is becoming more and more interesting



Prepositions

Prepositions expressing position

Opposite Next to Over Above Below On the corner In front of Behind Under Near
Enfrente/Delante Al lado de Por encima de Sobre Debajo En la esquina Delante de Detrás Por debajo de Cerca


Prepositions expressing second position

Into Onto To From Undes Over In front of
Hacia dentro Hacia fuera Hacia De, desde Por debajo Por encima Hacia delante


Prepositions in time and place

Time

At with specific time and festival periods.* The train arrives at a a quarter past twelve.

  • I am flying home a Chrismas.
  • At night / at weekend.


On with days and date* My brother coming on Monday.

  • We are having a party on Sta. Joan.
  • Barça are playing Madrid on 29^th November.


In for part of a day, months, seasons or years.* She likes joggins in the mornings/afternoon/evening (not night)

  • It's too cold/hot in winter/summer to run outside.
  • He is going to travel France in August.


Other prepositons of time* Durante – For

  • Desde – Since
  • Antes – Before
  • hasta - After
  • Until – Desde abril to mayo
  • From – to



Place

At for especific address* My parents live at 55 Passeig de Gracia


On to designate names of streets, aveneue, etc.* Her house is on Passeig de Gracia.


In for the names towns, countries, continents.* She lives in Barcelona

  • Barcelona is in Catalonia
  • Catalonis is in Europe


In for buildings and closes spaces.* I work in a clothes shop/museum

  • Wh had a picnic in the park/garden
  • I was in my car when she called my.


Prepositons of location

In At On No preposition
The bed Class The bed Downstairs
The bedroom Home The ceiling Downtown
The car The office The floor Inside
The class Work The horse Outside
The library School The plane Upstairs
School The library The train uptown


Other prepositions of place

  • On – sobre
  • in – dentro
  • above/over – encima de
  • Under – debajo de
  • In front of delante de
  • Behind/near/next to - al lado de, cerca de, junto a
  • Between – entre
  • among- entre muchos


Quantifers

Much – many – a lot of

Se traducen por mucho, mucha, muchos, muchas. Las reglas que se aplican son las siguentes, con cierta flexibilidad.* En oracions afirmativas “a lot of”.

  • En oraciones negativas e interrogativas:
    • Con sustantivos contables “many” Many books, coins, girls.
    • Con sustantivos incontables “much”. Much time, muchis effort, much energy.


Little / few

Se traducen por poco, poca, pocos y pocas.* Con sustantivos plurales “few”. Few books, Few coins, few pencils, few tickets.

  • Con sustantivos incontables “little”. Little sugar, little rain, little water.


Some examples* She is very friendly and has a lot of friends

  • I don't have many paintings in my flat.
  • When you were unemployed, did you receive much help from your family?
  • This bookshop has few books about Spanigs history.
  • There is little hope that the hostage will be released.


Some – Any.

Ambos adjetivos se traducen por “algo de” - “algunos”.

Regla general:* Some. Se utiliza en oracines afirmativas

  • Any. Se utiliza en oraciones negativas o interrogativas.


Excepciones:* Some. Se utiliza a veces en preguntas:

    • Do you want some wine?
    • Can I give you some advice?
  • Cuando se espera casi con toda seguridad respuesta afirmativa.
    • Can I have some Biscuits?
  • Any se utiliza a veces:
    • En oraciones afirmativas con el significado de “cualquiera”
      • Any kid would have behaved like that.
      • You can pick any of these bookshop
      • You can go anywhere you want.
    • En oraciones condicionales con el significado de “alguie, algo, alguna cosa”.
      • If anyone ask for me, please tell them I will be back soon.
      • If anything happens, please call me inmdiately.
      • If I had any money I would buy a new car.


Text of example:

My diet

I don't eat enough vegetables. I eat too much bread. I drink to much coke. But on the other hand, I eat enough fruit.

Lifestyle

I think I don't go to th gym too much. I don't eat enough fresh food. I'm too sedentary. But on the other hand, I'm very friendly and have a lot of friends.

Connectors

Posesive adjectives: My, Your, her, his, our, their.

Fot the questions: How, Who, When, why, What, Where, Which, How many (contables) how much (incontables).

Positive additions: And, Also – too – as well – También, besides, moreover, inadditions- Además.

Negative additions: Neither – ni, Either – tampoco.

Contrast: But, However /even thought (aunque), in spite of (a pesar de todo), While /Wherear (mientras), On the other hand, on the one hand, except for, a part from.

Explaning ideas: Thas is to say / Es decir, in the other words

Giving examples: Like – como, such as, como ahora, for example.

Describing similary: similarly – de manera parecida, In the same way – de la misma manera

Listing Ideas:At the first / Firstly – Primeramente, In the first place, to begin with first, Secondly, after this , Next then.

Time: When, Whenever (siempre que), While (mientras), As soon as – Tan pronto com/ así que, Meanwhile- mientras tanto.

Reason and cause: as – como que, because, because of – a causa de / debido a, As a result of – como consecuencia de.

Result: So – por lo tanto / así que /de manera que, Therefore – por tanto / en consecuencia, For this reason.

Sumary rising: In conclusion, in short – en resumen, to sum up /summing up – resumiendo.