Wednesday, 26 April 2017


Useful notes for candidates following a webinar on ECPE writing correction offered by the Hellenic American Union:

You can write a rough plan on the last page of your official writing booklet.

One and a half page is required so that the topic is deemed well developed. Otherwise, you lose rhetoric points (content and organisation)

You can leave a blank line between paragraphs or divide paragraphs traditionally. The division must be clearly distinguished.

If the essay is not finished, you lose rhetoric points.

Sample essay commentary:


My opinion: Rhetoric: 2 (that was not a for and against essay), Grammar: 5, Vocabulary: 4 ---> Total points: 11

Examiner's total score: 12

Marking criteria:


Thursday, 23 March 2017

Extra online mission: If today was our last day

1) Watch Ric Elias explain what the three things that really matter in life are, as he unravels the thoughts that sprung into his mind the minute his doomed plane went down.

2) Listen to Nickelback's song 'If Today Was Your Last Day' and contemplate on what each one of us would do if we knew that we were running out of time. Official video: Lyrics:

3) Blog your thoughts about: What is truly worth our effort and attention? What constitutes the very essence of life?

Online GCVR test

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Common colloquial intensifiers: Quick quiz

Circle the correct answer

1. It's ______ worse than any other slum I've seen.

a. by b. away c. far d. such a

2. It's the ______ and only solution.

a. each b. every c. one d. other

3. There are ______ any factories like this.

a. hardly b. almost c. few such d. few and far

4. I am ______ lazy, so I never recycle.

a. really much b. so very c. such a d. quite

5. ______ a few lakes are polluted.

a. Good b. Many c. Much d. Quite

6. He showed no guilt ________.

a. at b. whatsoever c. in d. not even

7. We see them ______ once in a while.

a. for all b. just this c. every d. now

8. ______ too often I'm too lazy to recycle.

a. quite b. so c. all d. more

9. ______ as you go, I'll be happy.

a. as long b. as far c. as much d. so much

10. ______ greedy he is!

a. What b. How c. Most d. Quite

11. It's ______ far the worst slum I've seen.

a. by b. away c. far d. such a

12. There is simply no ____ solution.

a. each b. every c. one d. other

13. There are ____ factories.

a. hardly b. almost c. few such d. few and far

14. I am ______ lazy, that I never recycle.

a. really much b. so very c. such a d. quite

15. _______ a lake is polluted.

a. Good b. Many c. Much d. Quite

16. He showed no guilt ________ the least.

a. at b. whatsoever c. in d. not even

17. We see them ______ and again.

a. for all b. just this c. every d. now

18. I'm ______ often too lazy to recycle.

a. quite b. so c. all d. more

19. ________ as like him, he does have faults.

a. as long b. as far c. as much d. so much

20. ______ a greedy man he is!

a. What b. How c. Most d. Quite

Visualizing the information in our first text


Monday, 13 March 2017

The Tell Tale Heart

  This book talks about a homicidal man and his new murder.  The victim is an old man with a vulture blue eye. The reason why he killed him was the eye as it is mentioned his blood and temperature  gets colder with just a glimpse. His plan was to visit his house about midnight in order to achieve the homicide. This happened for a week and on the eighth night he didi it. The older while he was waiting his death , he was getting more and more anxious. As a result his pulsation was quicker and louder.  The main role killed the man with pulling the heavy bed over him. That was his end. Then re police qot there and the main role convinced them that he wasn't guilty. However, a sudden feeling of ringing and this was getting louder and louder without stopping.  In the end,  he couldn't bare this emotion anymore and finally he said the truth.
  The impact by this book is that every bad action has a negative effect in the future.  No matter how the feeling of satisfaction tastes but the revenge the dead will take in order to make his homicidal,  in this case to feel intimidation and regret the actions.  In this Poe's book it is obvious that the man didn't finally fully regret the murder.

Friday, 10 March 2017

''The Tell-Tale Heart'' by Edgar Allan Poe

This horror story is called ''The Tell-Tale Heart'' by Edgar Allan Poe. Generally, it is about someone that wants to kill an old man because he feels haunted by his vulture eye. The unnamed narrator who is the protagonist has the whole story revolving around him and his goal. The main character has an unsteady personality and suffers from ''over acuteness of the senses'' because of the nervousness. The protagonist wants to persuade us that he is not insane but he is just nervous. In the beginning of the story we could notice that he is so calm and cautious observing the old man in his sleep. At the end, though, when the police officers arrived he was confident and enthusiastic that he had achieved the perfect triumph. Subsequently he got pale and noticed a ringing in his ears. The noise became louder and louder and he thought that it was the victims heart beating. He could not stand the noise and the qualms and finally took the blame. We come to a conclusion that he was too weak to keep the crime a secret. His unsteady personality and craziness did not let him dodge but he was trapped into his own mind.

Thursday, 9 March 2017

Poe's Tell-Tale Heart

It has not even been 24 hours since I finished reading the story "The Tell-Tale Heart" by Edgar Allan Poe. So, my impressions and thoughts on it are still fresh and have not yet been altered by time. It is a very atmospheric piece of literature. While reading, I felt like the protagonist was actually talking to me and that the events he described happened before me. However, I would like to talk a bit more specifically, regarding the protagonist and his personality as shown in the story. First of all, in the beginning, we can see that the protagonist is talking to someone. Is it another character that is not mentioned in the story? Is it the reader? Is he just talking to himself? It is not clear but the reader can hypothesize. He speaks like he is answering to someone who called him insane."but why will you say that I am mad? ". He mentions that some kind of disease made his senses sharper and then starts narrating the story trying to prove his sanity. He might insist on not being mad but we can see parts in his narration where it is clear that he is in fact demented. Not only when he said that he killed the old man he lived with or when he said that he watched him sleep every night exactly on midnight for hours, thinking of killing him but also in the way he described events."Oh, you would have laughed to see how cunningly I thrust it in! I moved it slowly—very, very slowly, so that I might not disturb the old man’s sleep"

"a single dim ray, like the thread of the spider, shot from out the crevice and full upon the vulture eye.  It was open—wide, wide open—and I grew furious as I gazed upon it."

"And now a new anxiety seized me—the beating of his heart would be heard by a neighbor! The old man’s hour had come!"

It is clear that the protagonist is suffering from some mental illness. He did not commit murder because he hated his victim, he just got fixated on the old man's eye. He deemed it evil and wanted to get rid of it staring at him. As he said "I loved the old man. He had never wronged me."He called it mostly "Vulture eye" and "Evil eye" while the eye was highly likely normal to any other person. He repeatedly saw things because of his paranoia and focused way too much on them. First it was the evil eye and then it was the heartbeat. After he killed the old man in the middle of the night, police officers visited his house because they were alerted by neighbors who had heard the victim scream. He had hidden the victim's body and was confident that the policemen would find nothing suspicious. He told them that the scream was his own because of a nightmare he had seen and invited them to seat with him in the old man's room and chat. Everything was normal at first, however after some time he started hearing a loud heart beating and got an anxiety crisis thinking it was the old man's heart. The beating got louder and louder while the policemen were still sitting there and talking. Finally he lost his temper, thinking that the policemen heard the beating too and just mocked him while already knowing that he was the murderer and admitted the crime. “Villains!” I shrieked, “dissemble no more! I admit the deed!—tear up the planks!—here, here!—it is the beating of his hideous heart!” . However the reader knows that it is impossible for the heart of the dead man to beat so it is considerably clear that the heart beating was the protagonist's because of having an anxiety attack. The story ends by him admitting a crime to the policemen which would probably not be discovered in any other way. It is an interesting story that portrays the mentality of a psychotic person and shows in what ways the brain can malfunction when one has lost their sanity. Such characters are often unpredictable and consequently very interesting when used in stories.