What do gunpowder, tobacco, and high-performance schools have in common? If we have the Great Wars of the 20th century as our backdrop, quite a lot. At the end of World War I, Germany was trying to cope with grave social problems. The owner of a cigarette company decided to fund a new school for his workers’ kids. Roughly thirty years later, the citizens of Italy found themselves dealing with the consequences of being in the losing side of World War II. Some families in the village of...

Unit 3: Food. In the first exercise, the coursebook brings a set of pictures, each of them showing different food separated in groups. The image labeled with the letter “B” depicts bacon, a box of cereal, two doughnuts, a waffle, some pancakes, eggs, and a glass of orange juice. The instructions tell students to check the picture which contains breakfast food. Easy-peasy. However, they frown and take longer to do what is required from them than you had predicted in your lesson plan. In a short while, the...

It’s a typical Saturday at the food court and the family in line in front of you is ready to order: the youngest one talks to her mom in fluent Spanish, the middle one talks on the phone in English and replies to his mom in Spanish, while the mom mixes Spanish with English in between her lines. The cashier looks puzzled while making a proud attempt to show off a few words he has learned here and there while watching Money Heist. The world is about to...