Monthly Archives: December, 2010

Word of the Year

As we stumble to the end of another year, the first of a new decade, it’s time for the annual round of Word of the Year lists. There are many floating around, but I like this one from the New York Times as the words are organised into handy categories, from the economy to pop(…)

Word Lens – instant translation

There’s been a lot of hype in the last couple of weeks about Word Lens, a new iPhone app that offers instant translation. The app works by using the built-in camera on the phone. You point the camera at some foreign text and the translation will appear instantly on your screen. It sounds like magic,(…)

Canadian English Month

I may be a little bit late jumping on this bandwagon, but it’s Canadian English month over at the Macmillan dictionary blog! The blog has a continuing series called ‘live English’, and in the past have had American, South African and Brazilian English months, amongst others. Since our Canuck friends rarely get featured (anywhere), it’s(…)

World in Words podcasts

I’ve just discovered these podcasts called The World in Words from PRI (Public Radio International) and I can’t believe I haven’t heard of them before! The description of the series is: The World in Words focuses on language. We cover everything from bilingual education to the globalization of English to untranslatable foreign phrases. You’ll learn(…)

Dictionary prize

High school students in Oklahoma can win up to $1,000 for writing a ‘mini-dictionary’ about their school, reports NewsOK. Sponsored by Oklahoma University’s Institute of US-China Issues, the Newman Young Writer’s Award offers prizes for a single or co-authored submission of a “mini-dictionary/encyclopaedia”. The entries must reflect the character of the school, and “can explore(…)


I occasionally read the Oxford University Press blog, and a recent post has uncovered a gem of a website for language learners. allows you to create short illustrated stories, using some fantastic artwork provided by the site. Your story can then be saved on the website for others to view, as well as being(…)

Stuffing or dressing?

My last post wished you all a happy Thanksgiving – I hope everyone has now digested their turkey and is ready to read more about languages! I’m not straying too far from the holiday however, as a friend sent me a link to this post on the excellent Separated By a Common Language blog, which(…)