Have you ever stopped to consider just how many technological gadgets you deal with every, single day? Computers, televisions, cell phones, video games, in-car DVD players and the ever present iPod. Do young people deal with it more than adults? According to Dr. Gary Small, author of "iBrain: Surviving the Technological Alteration of the Modern Mind," the average young person spends eight and a half hours a day exposed to digital technology. Are people addicted to technology?

Teenagers in Los Angeles in the US have taken part in an experiment to find out how they would cope without their electronic gadgets for a week. The 15 and 16-year-olds gave up their mobile phones, mp3 players, TV, radio and other electronic luxuries, and discovered that it was like to trying to kick an addiction.

Watch the video and check out what they said about it.

I’m not sure I’d call it an addiction, maybe because I’ve come to the conclusion that I would find it very hard to live without technology. What do you think?
How many technological gadgets do you deal with every day?
What would it be like to spend a week without them?
How much technology is too much technology?
“We’ve reached a point of no return. Technology is definitely part of our lives.” Do you agree?

Yone Santos - teacher - Flamengo


Love is in the Air

I am a singing teacher as my students say. Whenever they exchange glances or tease each other, I sing 'Love is in the air". So in order to celebrate Valentine's Day I invite you all to sing along at YouTube:


In many countries Valentine's Day is celebrated on 14th February, the day of Saint Valentine but in Brazil it is celebrated on 12th June, one day before Saint Anthony's Day.

In the English-speaking countries, it is the traditional day on which lovers express their love for each other by sending cards, presenting flowers or chocolate.

Let's exchange LOVE GREETINGS by filling in the blanks: LOVE IS ...

By Andrea Silva - Cosme Velho Branch - Rio de Janeiro


Pillow Fight

A FLASH MOB is a large group of people who assemble suddenly in a public place, perform an unusual action for a brief time, then quickly disperse. The term FLASH MOB is generally applied only to gatherings organized via social media or viral emails , rather than those organized by public relations firms or for a publicity stunt.

Take a look at this one in Trafalgar Square, London, UK: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=orukqxeWmM0&feature=related

FLASH MOBS began as a form of performance art. While they started as an apolitical act, FLASH MOBS may share superficial similarities to political demostrations.

And here is another one also in London: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VQ3d3KigPQM

But you can find them all over the world like this one in Antwerp, Belgium: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7EYAUazLI9k

Worldwide Pillow Fight Day (or International Pillow Fight Day) was a pillow fight FLASH MOB that took place on March 22, 2008. Over 25 cities around the globe participated in the first "international FLASH MOB", which was the world's largest FLASH MOB to date. On 4th April this year, approximately 200 people went to Largo do Machado for a pillow fight.

Check it out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MABH5VqsMNM&feature=related

You can check the You Tube for more FLASH MOBS.

Now, would you like to take part in a pillow fight?

Do you think FLASH MOBS can be fun in Rio or it could be too dangerous?

Do you have any amazing idea for a FLASH MOB?
By Andrea Silva - Cosme Velho Branch - Rio de Janeiro


Missouri University School Of Journalism Demands iPhone

Journalism students at the University of Missouri’s School of Journalism are going to be getting a taste of Apple, whether they like it or not: According to the university’s Website, journalism students starting classes in the fall will be required to purchase an Apple iPhone or an iPod touch. The requirement has been imposed to allow for the delivery of “freshman-orientation information” as well as course material.A release from Mizzou states students will be able to electronically download material to either of the devices from iTunes University, a no-cost component of the iTunes Store. The university said students who do not yet own an iPod touch, classified as “the minimum requirement,” or an iPhone should contact the school’s computer store.
Many, many schools are starting to do this. We will start recording lectures so that students may review them before exams,” the Web page states. “Students also will have ready access to critical information on where to find help to solve various problems thanks to material we will deliver in conjunction with freshman orientation.”

What do you think about it? Would you use your iPhones and iPods for academic purposes?

Posted by Tatiana Madureira - Teacher at Flamengo Branch, RJ


Bank robber helpfully leaves wallet behind

Bank robber helpfully leaves wallet behind

Robbers: often not very good at robbing
Robbers: often not very good at robbing

In the latest example of criminals making it very easy for the cops, police in the US didn't have to dust for fingerprints to find a robbery suspect - they just looked through the wallet he left behind at the scene.

Albert Vincent Perkins is charged with robbing First Federal Bank in Kansas City, Missouri. Police say he walked into the bank, handed the teller a plastic bag and ordered her to give him all of the 100 dollar bills.

Then he walked out of the bank - but left his wallet sitting on the counter.

Posted by Marcelo Duhá, teacher at Leblon, Rio de Janeiro


A New E-book Reader

Amazon is introducing a new electronic reader called "Kindle DX", which has a screen twice as big as the previous model. It has a complete keyboard and memory enough to store 3,500 e-books, besides the 3G download feature, available only in the US. The suggested price is US$489.

By Ana Maria de Araujo, Jardim Botânico, Rio de Janeiro

What are YOU like?

The BBC site is offering a personality test so that we can know a little bit more about ourselves, friends and family members.

Are you a leader or a peacemaker? A go-getter or a realist? To take the test click on the link below:


After having taken the test, were you happy with the results? Do you enjoy taking this sort of test? How accurate do think they are? Let´s share our ideas!

Marcello Caldas - Teacher at Botafogo, RJ


Do you twitter?

Twitter is for staying in touch and keeping up with friends no matter where you are or what you’re doing. For some friends you might want instant mobile updates—for others, you can just check the web. Invite your friends to Twitter and decide how connected you want you to be. Twitter members can display a widget showing their twitter feed.

Following (no pun intended!) the trend of programmes/softwares that are used for social networking (e.g orkut, facebook, msn messenger etc), now comes a tool which enables you to know whatever your friends and/or co-workers are doing - in real time! Here is what some users had to say about it:

"I learn something new several times a day and stay connected with people that form my most valuable network. This is the one tool I would choose if I could only keep one (as long as everyone else kept it also!)." Barry Dahl

"This has become another important tool for me over the last 6 months. I read all the tweets of the people I follow in the Firefox add-in, Twitterfox, and I use Twitterfeed to send my own RSS feeds into my Twitter accounts." Jane Hart

"Another one I'm addicted to! I can keep up to date with what lots of people are doing in my area (elearning, community and social media): the links and comments people post and the discussions they have are invaluable. It can really be a community." Helen Whitehead

If you would like to know more about Twitter, simply click on the link below:


What do you think about this innovative tool? Could it be really helpful or is it just a fun way to keep track of someone else´s routine? Looking forward to your comments!

Marcello Caldas - Teacher at Botafogo Branch, RJ