Crossrail, or the Elizabeth line as it is now known, is a 118 kilometers long railway line in south-east England. It runs from Essex in the east to Berkshire in the west, cutting underground through central London.
On May 17, Queen Elizabeth II officially opened the new Elizabeth line, at Paddington Station in London. It was so unexpected for many, especially because the Queen was missing a part of events due her health problems.
For the oficial visit, she was joined by her youngest son, Prince Edward, and Prime Minister Boris Johnson. “We’re all incredibly touched and moved and grateful to her Majesty for coming to open the Elizabeth Line today,” Johnson said. “It was fantastic to see her.”
The Queen was very all smiles when she met with the train workers. She was also given an Oyster card and shown how to use it on a ticket machine.
Buckingham Palace called that “a happy development”, revealing “the organisers were informed of the possibility she may attend.”
The Crossrail project had cost 18,8 billion pounds to put together and after a number of setbacks it is finally open after 4 years of delay! Mayor of London Sadig Khan said the line would deliver a £42 billion boost to the whole UK economy and create hundreds of thousands of new jobs. Many travel-weary commuters from the suburbs will find their journey times being slashed significantly as a result of the project.
Let’s watch a short but interesting film about it:
Written by Radek Musiał from class 1f, edited by M.Kossak
I’m so pleased to say that our class- 1f (group 2) had a second chance to attend the BBC Live Lesson. That one conducted by English, native speaker- Dan Shepherd was entitled: ,,A high cost of a University education’’. There were also Belgians, Serbs, Peruvians and Russians. It was pretty noteworthy to read how university life looks different in some countries around the world. I have to mention that it was thought-provoking to confront with other person opinion about students’ life. We were also able to take a vote in the short survey using Menti.com. A big number of us agreed that students have to go through very tough time during university. The most terrific part was talking with the man live! A lot of people in our group have found the courage to say something and test themselves in having a short conversation with a native speaker. It was a very practical experience for the future. I’m sure we have expanded vocabulary, understanding the language, but the main thing, speaking English on a high level. the There’s no denying that it was remarkable, educational and unforgettable meeting. We look forward to the next lessons!
Written by Karolina Stemplewska from class 1f, edited by Ms.M.Kossak
Japanese cuisine is getting really popular nowdays. The Japanese diet is very fit and healthy. The most popular Japanese dishes usually have a soft taste. The Japanese chefs follow one rule – they don’t use too much spices. Isn’t it too bland then? Not really…. Everyone who decides to eat the dish can season the dish according to their own needs. The Japanese assume, however, that the excessive amount of spices only causes the loss of the original flavor of the carefully prepared dish. The most popular dishes are: sushi, dango and onigiri.
1. Sushi (すし)
Sushi is a dish known all over the world. It’s a dish prepared of vinegared rice, usually with some sugar and salt, accompanied by a variety of ingredients, such as seafood, often raw, and vegetables.
For the rice
300g sushi rice, 100ml rice wine vinegar, 2 tbsp golden caster sugar
For the Japanese mayonnaise
3 tbsp mayonnaise, 1 tbsp rice wine vinegar, 1 tsp soy sauce
For the sushi
25g bag nori (seaweed) sheets, choose from the following fillings: cucumber strips, smoked salmon, white crabmeat, canned tuna, red pepper, avocado, spring onion
To serve with all styles of sushi
wasabi (optional), pickled ginger, soy sauce
How to prepare
1. To make sushi rolls: Pat out some rice. Lay a nori sheet on the mat, shiny-side down. Dip your hands in the vinegared water, then pat handfuls of rice on top in a 1cm thick layer, leaving the furthest edge from you clear.
2. Spread over some Japanese mayonnaise. Use a spoon to spread out a thin layer of mayonnaise down the middle of the rice.
3. Add the filling. Get your child to top the mayonnaise with a line of their favourite fillings – here we’ve used tuna and cucumber.
4. Roll it up. Lift the edge of the mat over the rice, applying a little pressure to keep everything in a tight roll.
5. Stick down the sides like a stamp. When you get to the edge without any rice, brush with a little water and continue to roll into a tight roll.
6. Wrap in cling film. Remove the mat and roll tightly in cling film before a grown-up cuts the sushi into thick slices, then unravel the cling film.
7. To make pressed sushi: Layer over some smoked salmon. Line a loaf tin with cling film, then place a thin layer of smoked salmon inside on top of the cling film.
8. Cover with rice and press down. Press about 3cm of rice over the fish, fold the cling film over and press down as much as you can, using another tin if you have one.
9. Tip it out like a sandcastle. Turn block of sushi onto a chopping board. Get a grown-up to cut into fingers, then remove the cling film.
10. To make sushi balls: Choose your topping. Get a small square of cling film and place a topping, like half a prawn or a small piece of smoked salmon, on it. Use damp hands to roll walnut-sized balls of rice and place on the topping.
11. Make into tight balls. Bring the corners of the cling film together and tighten into balls by twisting it up, then unwrap and serve.
2. Dango (だんご)
Dango is a Japanese dumpling made from rice flour mixed with uruchi rice flour and glutinous rice flour. It is different from the method of making mochi, which is made after steaming glutinous rice. Dango is usually finished round shaped, three to five dango are often served on a skewer. Generally, dango comes under the category of wagashi, and is often served with green tea. It is eaten year-round, but the different varieties are traditionally eaten in given seasons.
120g Sticky Rice Powder, 120g Tofu, 3 Tablespoons Sugar, 1 Tablespoon Green Tea Powder, 2 Drops Food Colouring (Red)
How to prepare
1. Mix the Sticky Rice, the Tofu and the sugar to form a certain kind of dough for making Dango. Make a round ball with the dough.
2. Split your round ball into three pieces. Add the green tea powder to one of the pieces. Mix it with your hands until it has gotten a uniform green colour. Leave the second piece of the dough as it is and now add 2 Drops of red food colouring to the third piece. Mix it with your hands until it has gotten a red uniform colour.
3. Now divide each of your three pieces of dough into five parts. Now you should have 15 parts of dough. Five will be red, five white, and the remaining five green. Form each of the 15 parts into balls by rolling them with your palms.
4. Boil the 15 pieces of dough for about 2 to 3 minutes. Then, let them cool down. Then, take 3 pieces of dough each different colour. Get a skewer and pierce the 3 pieces of dough on. The order doesn’t really matter but it’s more traditional in Japan to put the green one on first, then the white, and finally, then the red.
3. Onigiri (おにぎり)
It’s a Japanese food made from white rice formed into triangular or cylindrical shapes and often wrapped in nori. Traditionally, an onigiri is filled with pickled ume (umeboshi), salted salmon, katsuobushi, kombu, tarako, mentaiko, takanazuke (pickled takana) or any other salty or sour ingredient as a natural preservative. Most Japanese convenience stores stock their onigiri with various fillings and flavors.
300g/10½oz Japanese short grain rice, 1–1.5 large nori sheets (approx. 20cm/8in square)
For the umeboshi filling (optional)
5cm/2in kombu (approx. 5g/⅛oz), soaked in cold water for 10 minutes, 2 tsp soy sauce, 1 tsp sake, 1 tsp mirin, 1 tsp sugar, 2 pieces umeboshi (Japanese pickled plums), 1 tbsp sesame seeds
For the sweetcorn filling (optional)
15g/½oz unsalted butter, 1 small tin sweetcorn, drained, or ½ a corn cob, kernels cut off, 5g/⅛oz bonito flakes, 1½ tsp soy sauce, pinch sea salt
How to prepare
1. Wash the rice in five changes of water. Drain in a colander, transfer to a pan and leave to soak in about 400ml/14fl oz water for about an hour.
2. Cover with a lid and bring to the boil over a medium–low heat – this should take 10–15 minutes. There is no need to open the lid: you will hear the rice bubbling, or see when the bubbles lift the lid. Turn the heat down to low and cook for a further 10–15 minutes (if you’ve been tempted and opened the lid, give it a little boost of high heat for 10 seconds).
3. Turn off the heat and leave the rice to steam in the pan for further 10 minutes.
4. Once it has steamed, stir up the rice from the bottom of the pan a few times, then divide into either four or six smaller portions.
5. While the rice is cooking, prepare the fillings you’d like. To make the umeboshi onigiri, take the kombu out of the water and cut it into thin strips, then simmer over a low heat with half of the soaking water, the soy sauce, sake, mirin and sugar. When most of the liquid has evaporated, take off the heat and set aside to cool.
6. Take the stones out of the umeboshi and roughly chop.
7. To shape the onigiri, wet your hands and sprinkle a small amount of salt on them, then take a portion of rice into one of your hands. Make a little hole in the middle of the rice and place half of the umeboshi and half of the kombu in the hole, then mould the rice over the filling. Keep rotating the rice ball in your hands as you gently form a triangular shape. Repeat to make either two large or three smaller rice balls.
8. To make the sweetcorn onigiri, melt the butter in a frying pan over a medium heat. Add the corn and fry for 3 minutes. Add the bonito flakes and soy sauce, stir briefly and take off the heat. Add a pinch of salt and mix with the remaining rice. Shape into two or three triangles or balls.
9. Cut the nori sheet into four or six strips. Place an onigiri at the centre of each strip of nori and fold the sides up.
Strange as the names of dishes may sound… they are worth trying because of “healthy reasons”. A traditional Japanese cuisine diet is well-balanced, featuring more fish than red meat, pickled food, plenty of vegetables and rise. It involves little highly processed food and lower sugar intake. Generally speaking, this Japanese diet is low in calories and full of nutrients.
Aricle written by Zuzanna Rakowska and Amelia Widomska from class 1f, edited by M.Kossak
Pinnawala is an orphanage for elephants that have been abandoned by the herd or their family have been killed by poachers but also for those who have been hurt. This place is located in the village of Pinnawala, Sri Lanka. Such elephants are often unable to survive on their own without the help offered by human species. The tragedy is that small elephants do not survive in the wild because they are fed breast milk until the age of five. At that time there are 96 elephants alltogether in this particular orphanage.
The orphanage was established in 1975 by the Sri Lankan Department of Wildlife Conservation for elephants found in the wild to care for and protect them. In the beginning there were 5 elephants, then there were many more, until 1995. Since then, elephants have been brought to Elephant Transit Home, and in Pinnawala the number of elephants is increased only by birth.
In August 2021, the elephant Surangi gave birth to twins. It’s been the first time in 80 years. Twins in elephants are very rare because one of them often does not survive.
On the Internet there are different opinions about the orphanages in general. There are many pictures of elephants with chains on their legs or of people with sticks next to the elephants. But we sholud not forget it’s just for the safety of people. A full-grown elephant can weigh more than 4 tons. Male elephants are very aggressive during reproduction, which is why you need a chain and many experienced people to tame them up to create a safe place for everyone. Lots of people shout that elephants are being abused and tied to one place. For example, the Ceylon elephant eats practically all day long. There are almost 100 elephants in the Pinnawala, so they must eat at a given time in order to eat the right amount,. That is why they are tied so that they do not go away and leave food. I have been and seen everything by myself! There is one conclusion coming out… Being there, I did not notice any aggression towards the elephants. People evaluate the orphanage negatively by not being there and not seeing what the real situation is.
Olga’s own photos and experience from the trip to Sri Lanka and the following page:
Article written by Olga Dyner from class 2a. Edited by Ms Kossak-Wąchała
The royals landed in St Vincent and the Grenadies on the tour to mark the Platinium Jubilee. They were given a warm welcome and greeted by scouts and a guard of honour. Governor general Dame Susan Dougan and acting prime minister Montgomery Daniel welcomed Prince Edward, the Queen’s youngest son.
But later, a small goup gathered to protest against British colonialism. When the couple were traveling to Government House in St Vincent and the Grenadines on Saturday, about 15 protesters displayed banners reading “end to colonialism” and “£ Compensation Now”.
During the tour, Prince Edward met Commonwealth Games athletes and watched a race held in honour of the Platinum Jubilee and a T10 women’s cricket match. Meanwhile, the Countess of Wessex visited a community college to watch a dance performance and met two groups – Persons With Disabilities and the Society of and for the Blind – in her role as a global ambassador for the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness. The Earl and Countess of Wessex planted a tree to mark the Queen’s 70-year reign.
photos: bbc.com ; radionewshub.com
News prepared by Radek Musiał from class 1f. Edited by Ms Kossak
Another BBC BIG LIVE LESSONS – international project took place!
Class 2a had a chance to actively take part in this event. We were glad that we had the opportunity to connect with native speaker once again. We managed to bring our mobile devices and entered the lesson on the ZOOM platform. Due to our good preparation, the lesson passed really efficiently and pleasingly. The lecture was attended by students from Poland as well as from Ukraine and Vietnam. We came across a very interesting and worthwhile topic, which was “Social media: Creativity vs Anxiety”. We are grateful that our knowledge was broadened on such an important matter these days. We exchanged information about our daily habits connected to the Internet and pointed out how the fact that we have access to our phones round-the-clock can help us germinate relishes and hobbies. We got many tips on how to use devices mindfully and had the chance to share some useful tips on how to reduce the amount of anxiety we experience on a daily basis. The Padlet app allowed us to participate through writing statements about social media issues. Prepared worksheets profited us with many useful phrases and the option to pour our thoughts on paper. We did many kinds of tasks ranging from listening to writing comprehension. As always, all the students tried to be active and open in expressing their opinions and answering questions.
Thanks to the support of the presenter we were able to share and receive our experiences with the regular use of modern technology.
Not only did the lecturer pass a huge amount of knowledge to us but also provided a lot of entertainment. The wide variety of tasks expanded our language skills and vocabulary. His kindness and consideration helped us to become more and more passionate about learning and overcoming language barriers.
We are extremely grateful for our English teacher – prof. Marzena Kossak-Wąchała who gave us the opportunity to benefit from such a brilliantly organized and educational initiative once again. We are looking forward to the next classes and hope to be a part of them.
News written by Katarzyna Gawron and Ola Janus from class 2a. Edited by Ms M.Kossak-Wąchała.