terça-feira, 26 de abril de 2016

Cultural Immersion: Mexico City (Mexico)

 The country (United Mexican States/ Mexico)

Mexico flag - Read more
Mexico is a country between the U.S. and Central America that's known for its Pacific and Gulf of Mexico beaches and its diverse landscape of mountains, deserts and jungles. Ancient ruins such as Teotihuacan (Aztec) and Chichen Itza (Mayan) are scattered throughout the country, as are Spanish colonial-era towns.

Mexico map - Read more

Mexico City

Mexico City is the capital of Mexico and it's considered a charming and very versatile cityMagnificent buildings and museums, old churches and green parks that seem to spread peace border with lively and too noisy streets. 

▪ Tourist spots

▪ Castillo de Chapultepec
Castillo de Chapultepec was built between 1780 and 1790 on the site of an Aztec fort. The castle provides beautiful panoramic views of the city.  Initially, the building was occupied by Military Academy, and then it served as an official royal residence. In 1939, by order of President Cardenas, the castle became the location of the National History Museum (Museo Nacional de Historia). (Read more)

▪ Palace of Fine Arts. 
The construction of the Palace of Fine Arts (Palacio de Bellas Artes) was started in 1904, made as a combination of the neoclassical style and Art Nouveau and the interior is made in the art deco style. Fans of art will be definitely not disappointed by murals made by Rivera, Siqueiros, Orozco, Tamayo and Montenegro. The glass curtain by Tiffany also deserves a special attention. The curtain is made of almost a million parts. Modern Mexican landscape painter Dr. Atl used them as a canvas and drew volcanoes of Mexico on the curtain. (Read more)

 ▪ Templo Mayor 
The Templo Mayor (Spanish for "Great Temple") was one of the main temples of the Aztecs in their capital city of Tenochtitlan, which is now Mexico City. Its architectural style belongs to the late Postclassic period of Mesoamerica. The temple was called the huei teocalli in the Nahuatl language and dedicated simultaneously to two gods, Huitzilopochtli, god of war, and Tlaloc, god of rain and agriculture, each of which had a shrine at the top of the pyramid with separate staircases. The spire in the center of the image to the right was devoted to Quetzalcoatl in his form as the wind god, Ehecatl. (Read More)

The heart of Mexico City is Zócalo (The Birthplace of the Constiution), the place is where the the contry’s first constitution was proclaimed in 1813. It’s also one of the largest squares and was laid out almost immediately after the conquest of the former Aztec city of Tenochtitlan on which it stands. (Read more)

 The National Museum of Anthropology
The National Museum of Anthropology lies in Chapultepec  Park and is hard to miss due to the incradible contemporary architecture. Built in 1964, the museum displays old Indian art treasures, the  most notably in the Central Patio, parto f which is is roofed by gigantic Stone shelter supported by na 11-meter-tall column with waterfalls symbolizing the eternal cycle of life. (Read more)

▪ Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral
One of the oldest and largest churches in the western hemisphere, built atop part of the old Aztec temple precinct, construction of this massive basalt and grey sandstone structure began in 1525 and extended over 250 years. (Read more)

▪ Cuisine

The local cuisine can be called one of the major national attractions. It is truly original and unique. Corn and corn flour occupy the honorable place in the national cuisine. These ingredients are added in literally every dish.

Corn tortillas "tacos," which are baked with various fillings, are the most beloved dish among local people. Among the meat dishes the most popular one is, without a doubt, “posoles "- deep fried meat in corn flour. 

The most famous drinks are Horchata (made with rice, almonds, cinnamon, and sugar), Licuados (various fruits mixed with either orange juice or milk and zizzed in a blender)and Aguas Frescas (made with fruit and water in a blender)Healthier, tastier, and cheaper than refrescos (soft drinks), the drinks come in every flavor, color, and size imaginable.


Aguas Frescas

▪ Habits

Local residents are talented and friendly people. These are great musicians, dancers and acrobats. They are happy to show their skills to visitors, so while walking around the city you can see funny street musicians and become a witness of an enchanting performance. 

Street Performer
Many locals people may seem even overly helpful and friendly. Women here can hear numerous compliments and praising. Such attitude is normal here and should not cause any embarrassment. In their turn, local people also expect courteous and polite attitude. You cannot afford any negligence even with strangers - it can severely hurt local people or cause uproar. Despite their love to different kinds of celebrations, local people have rather reserved attitude to alcohol. Appearing drunk in a public place is considered a sign of bad manners and disrespect to others.

▪ Famous personalities

                            Anahí Giovanna Puente Portilla                                Roberto Gómez Bolaños (Chespirito)
                                Singer, Songwriter, Actress                                 Screenwriter, Actor, Comedian, Film Director,                                                                                                                    Television Director, Songwrither, Playwright, Author
▪ Music

▪ Son
Its formal structure is based on the alternation of instrumental sections and the singing of short poetic units called coplas. The mode is usually major, with harmonic vocabulary mostly limited to progressions drawing from I, IV, II7, V and V5. Triple meter (6/8, 3/4, or a combination of both) predominates, with many exceptions in duple meter.[1]
Son is performed most often by giant ensembles in which string instruments predominate, with notable region-specific exceptions like marimba ensembles and wind ensembles.

▪ Ranchera
Ranchera is a genre of the traditional Mexican music originally sung by only one performer with a guitar. It dates to the years of the Mexican Revolution in the early 20th century. It later became closely associated with the mariachi groups which evolved in Jalisco.
Ranchera today is also played by norteño (Conjunto) or banda. Drawing on rural traditional folk music, ranchera developed as a symbol of a new national consciousness in reaction to the aristocratic tastes of the period. Traditional rancheras are about love, patriotism or nature. Rhythms can be in 3/4, 2/4 or 4/4, reflecting the tempo of, respectively, the waltz, the polka, and the bolero. 

▪ Corrido
Corrido music is a popular narrative song of poetry form, a ballad. Various themes are featured in Mexican corridos, and corrido lyrics are often old legends (stories) and ballads about a famed criminal or hero in the rural frontier areas of Mexico.

A common example is "la Cucaracha" which is derived from an Arabic sailors' song from the Moors prior the Reconquista. The corrido has a rhythm similar to that of the European waltz; corridos, like rancheras, have introductory instrumental music and adornos interrupting the stanzas of the lyrics. However, unlike rancheras, the rhythm of a corrido remains fairly consistent, rancheras can be played at a variety of rhythms. Corridos often tell stories, while rancheras are for dancing.

▪ Cost of living

Living in Mexico City can be an amazingly cost-effective experience, especially if you're earning the US dollar or similar. Most things are astoundingly cheap. The subway is 3 pesos per ride (24 cents), produce (especially from the market) is bountiful and inexpensive, and you can rent a room for as little as 2000 pesos a month ($158). 

Of course, you can spend serious money in Mexico City if you drive, shop at Antara and other top malls, rent a fancy Polanco condo, and eat at restaurants in La Condesa. However, if you take public transportation, cook with market food or eat at street stands, really scour the rental listings, drink at cantinas, and buy your clothes/house supplies at discount grocers or markets you can live like a king on your home currency (or comfortably on the peso). (Read more)

source: numbeo.com

▪ Climate

Because of its location on a high plateau and its high elevation Mexico City enjoys mild, pleasant weather nearly all year. Winters are very mild. The temperature in winter averages between 20 and 24 degrees Celsius (high 68 to 74° Fahrenheit) and in summer the average temperature is around 28 degrees Celsius (83° Fahrenheit). 

October through May is the city's dry season, which means this period has very little rain. From June through September is considered the "rainy season". During the summer months it rains on average once a day, though the rain rarely lasts longer than a few hours. 

What's the best time to travel to Mexico City in Mexico? Here are some facts: 

terça-feira, 19 de abril de 2016

Series Indications: Daredevil


The first in a planned series of shows detailing the Marvel universe, "Daredevil" follows Matt Murdock, attorney by day and vigilante by night. Blinded in an accident as a child, Murdock uses his heightened senses as Daredevil to fight crime on the streets of New York after the sun goes down. While Murdock's day job requires him to believe in the criminal justice system, his alter ego does not follow suit, leading him to take the law into his own hands to protect his Hell's Kitchen neighborhood and the surrounding communities.

Watch the trailer below:

Watch here ] (english with subtitles in portuguese)

Series Indications: Arrow


When presumed-dead billionaire playboy Oliver Queen returns home to Starling City after five years stranded on a remote island in the Pacific, he hides the ways the experience has changed him. As he reconnects with those closest to him, including his sister, Thea, Oliver appears to be the same wealthy, carefree bachelor they've always known. At night, flanked by his devoted friend, Diggle, Oliver uses his secret persona -- that of a vigilante -- to right societal wrongs and transform the city to its former glory.

Watch the trailer below:

Watch here ] (english with subtitles in portuguese)

Series Indications: The Tudors

The Tudors

This Showtime drama focuses on the early years of King Henry VIII's nearly 40-year reign (1509-1547) of England. The series looks at Henry's famous female companions like Catherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn and delves into his relationships with important figures like Sir Thomas More, Cardinal Wolsey (head of the Catholic Church of England during its break with Rome) and Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk, who was Henry's best friend and unofficial adviser.

Watch the trailer below: 

Watch here ] (english with subtitles in portuguese)

Week 18 - Body language & Intensifiers

Participação de Noob, Sillas e Gaby.

Não se esqueça de praticar as expressões novas, acrescentando suas criações na seção de comentários :D
Seu suporte é muito importante para nós
Curta e compartilhe os videos do canal com seus amigos!!!

▪ Conheça nosso Canal no YouTubeAlpha Idiomas
▪ Saiba mais em nosso site: www.alphaidiomas.com.br

Week 17 - Clothes description

Nesse vídeo aprenderemos como descrever pessoas de acordo com suas vestimentas.

Participação especial de Vinicius, Rafaela R., Rafaela E., Dener, Sillas e Gaby.

Não se esqueça de praticar as expressões novas, acrescentando suas criações na seção de comentários :D
Seu suporte é muito importante para nós
Curta e compartilhe os videos do canal com seus amigos!!!

▪ Conheça nosso Canal no YouTubeAlpha Idiomas
▪ Saiba mais em nosso site: www.alphaidiomas.com.br

Week 16 - Body Parts and Excercises

Nesse vídeo trabalharemos com as partes do corpo, e alguns exercicios e dicas para serem usadas antes de praticarmos atividades físicas.

Participação especial de Dener, Sillas e Gaby.

Não se esqueça de praticar as expressões novas, acrescentando suas criações na seção de comentários.

▪ Conheça nosso Canal no YouTubeAlpha Idiomas
▪ Saiba mais em nosso site: www.alphaidiomas.com.br

Week 15 - Cooking and Eating

Nesse vídeo aprenderemos como cozinhar (não apenas o vocabulário, mas uma receita super legal )
também trabalharemos com utensílios, quantidades e muito mais !!!

Participação especial de Susy, Sillas e Gaby.

Não se esqueça de praticar as expressões novas, acrescentando suas criações na seção de comentários!

▪ Conheça nosso Canal no YouTubeAlpha Idiomas
▪ Saiba mais em nosso site: www.alphaidiomas.com.br

Cultural Immersion: Philadelphia (USA)

 The country (United States of America)

USA flag - Read more
The United States of America (commonly referred to as the United States, U.S., USA, or America), is a federal republic composed of 50 states, a federal district of Washington, D.C., five major territories, and various possessions.
It is one of the world's most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations, the product of large-scale immigration from many countries.The geography and climate of the United States are also extremely diverse, and the country is home to a wide variety of wildlife.

USA map - Read more


This city is a large metropolis, a financial, industrial and cultural center of the United States. Wide choice of attractions, numerous entertainments and friendly atmosphere make this city a popular tourist area.


Particular attention should be paid to the historical monuments of Philadelphia. Independence Hall is by far the most popular sight of the city. In the end of the 18th century this hall became the witness of two important events. In 1776 here was proclaimed the Declaration of Independence, and in 1787 the hall became the place of the U.S. Constitution adoption. 

Independence Hall - Read more
Shoppers should definitely visit Italian market and Wanamaker's supermarket - the oldest one in the country. In this city you will find several dozens of museums, the most unusual of which is surely Mutter Museum of Medical History devoted to collections of medical equipment and biological exhibits. Tourists can also learn more about the history of the city in Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. 

Italian Market - Read more
There are about twenty religious monuments of different eras in the city. Gloria Dei Church and Old Pine Street Presbyterian Church are considered to be the most scenic. To make the cultural program diverse devote some time to local museums. One of the most visited venues is the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The museum houses one of the world's largest collections of paintings by Van Gogh.

Gloria Dei Church - Read More
Philadelphia Museum of Art - Read more - Official website
A interesting attraction is the Shofuso Japanese House and Garden. Shofuso was built in 1953 as a gift from Japan to American citizens, to symbolize post-war peace and friendship between the two countries. The building was constructed using traditional Japanese techniques and materials imported from Japan.
Shofuso Japanese House and Garden - Read more

▪ Cuisine

The cuisine was shaped largely by the city's mixture of ethnicities, available foodstuffs and history, then certain foods have become iconic to the city.
 Invented in Philadelphia in the 1930s, the cheesesteak is the most well known icon of the city, and soft pretzels have become a part of Philadelphia culture. 

Cheesesteak - Read more

Pretzels - Read more
South Philly is rightly known for its Italian bakeries, spilling over with sweets like torrone, lobster tails, and (when the season is right) zeppoli. So while, sure, you could get a good cannoli in a number of other cities, the one at nearly-century-old Termini Bros. is both definitive and integral to the Philly experience. 
Cannoli - Read more
▪ Music

The city of Philadelphia, is home to a vibrant and well-documented musical heritage, stretching back to colonial times. Innovations in classical music, opera, R&B, jazz and soul have earned the music of Philadelphia national and international renown. Philadelphia's musical institutions have long played an important role in the music of Pennsylvania, as well as a nationwide impact, especially in the early development of hip hop music.
Philadelphia's diverse population has also given it a reputation for styles ranging from dancehall to Irish traditional music, as well as a thriving classical and folk music scene.

Academy of Music - Read more

▪ Economy

Philadelphia is the center of economic activity in Pennsylvania. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the Philadelphia area had a total gross metropolitan product of $347 billion in 2010, the seventh-largest metropolitan economy in the United States.
With a gross domestic product of $388 billion, Philadelphia ranks ninth among world cities and fourth in the nation. The city is also the nation's fourth-largest consumer media market, as ranked by the Nielsen Media Research.

The city is home to the Philadelphia Stock Exchange and several Fortune 500 companies.
Philadelphia has shifted to an information technology and service-based economy. Financial activities account for the largest sector of the metro economy, and it is one of the largest health education and research centers in the United States. Philadelphia's history attracts many tourists, with the Liberty Bell receiving over 2 million visitors in 2010.

▪ Cost of Living

 Those considering a move to this area will be interested to know that the Cost of Living in Philadelphia is about 25 percent greater than the national average cost of living.

Philadelphia is certainly a city for working people, and is a great place to start a career. Median Salaries in Philadelphia are competitive, which could make up for the higher cost of living in this city. Some of the highest paid positions on the Philadelphia salary chart include lawyers, software engineers and IT project managers. Overall, Starting Salaries in Philadelphia are close to National Averages. But after several years of experience, Philly's median salary range tends to be higher than the national income based on comparable levels of experience. 

▪ Climate

Philadelphia falls in the northern periphery of the humid subtropical climate zone (Köppen Cfa). Summers are typically hot and muggy, fall and spring are generally mild, and winter is cold. Snowfall is highly variable, with some winters bringing only light snow and others bringing several major snowstorms, with the normal seasonal snowfall standing at 22.4 in (57 cm); snow in November or April is rare, and a sustained snow cover is rare.

Climate - Read more