All Sima's articles

Есть ли разница между «profession» и «occupation»?

«Profession» частично совпадает по значению с русским словом «профессия», это то, что можно получить, только закончив колледж или вуз. «Profession» говорит о глубоких знаниях в какой-то области, полученных в учебном заведении.

Should we work less?


Many of us tend to think of our brain not as muscles, but as a computer: a machine capable of constant work. Not only is that untrue, but pushing ourselves to work for hours without a break can be harmful, some experts say. The idea that you can indefinitely stretch out your deep focus and productivity time to these arbitrary limits is really wrong. It’s self-defeating,” says research scientist Andrew Smart, author of Autopilot. “If you’re constantly putting yourself into this cognitive debt, where your physiology is saying ‘I need a break’ but you keep pushing yourself, you get this low-level stress response that’s chronic – and, over time, extraordinarily dangerous.”

The time of your life: 9 выражений со словом ‘time’

Слово 'time' – одно из самых распространённых существительных в английском языке. Оно входит в состав огромного количества устойчивых выражений. Сегодня мы расскажем вам о тех из них, которые встречаются не очень часто и о которых вы, возможно, не знаете. Однако сначала разберёмся с двумя словосочетаниями, которые часто путают – ‘on time’ и ‘in time’.

We can work it out: как справляться с трудностями по-английски

Жизнь полна неожиданностей. Постоянно возникают новые и новые трудности, с которыми нам приходится справляться. Самые простые фразы для того, чтобы рассказать о том, как решить ту или иную проблему – это  'to manage problems' и 'to solve problems'. Однако в английском языке есть немало фразовых глаголов, которые могут заменить эти уже приевшиеся выражения.

Слова-хамелеоны: существительные, которые могут быть и исчисляемыми, и неисчисляемыми

Одна из первых вещей, которые узнают в процессе изучения английского языка – то, что все существительные делятся на исчисляемые и неисчисляемые, и исходя из их принадлежности мы решаем, какой артикль или наречие (much или many) перед ними употребить. Однако могут ли быть исключения? В этой статье мы расскажем вам о том, чего нет в школьной программе – о существительных, которые могут быть и исчисляемыми, и неисчисляемыми.

On top of the world: идиомы и фразовые глаголы о счастье

Если вы поспрашиваете людей о том, что  для них значит быть счастливым, то вы, скорее всего, услышите множество разных ответов. Всё зависит от того, что важно для конкретного человека. Из этой статьи вы узнаете о пяти «счастливых» идиомах и о том, как рассказать о том, что делает вас счастливым.

Идиомы, о которых пойдёт речь – синонимы слова ‘happy'. Эти выражения метафоричны – они представляют счастье как состояние, в котором человек парит в небе или находится на самой вершине мира:

I wish you were here: как говорить о желаниях и сожалениях на английском

В жизни не всегда всё идёт по плану. Все мы порой сожалеем о том, что случилось в прошлом, или хотим, чтобы что-то изменилось в настоящем. В этой статье мы расскажем вам о том, как сожалеть и выражать свои желания на английском.

Нашими главными помощниками будут конструкции ‘I wish’ (на русский это обычно переводится как «жаль, что») и ‘if only’. Это прозвучит странно, но в данном случае, говоря о ситуациях, происходящих в настоящем, мы используем Past Simple:


Questions for discussion:

  1. What is responsibility?
  2. What should a responsible friend/spouse/parent/sibling/grandparent be like?
  3. What are the responsibilities of parents? Should parents support their children financially while they are studying at university?
  4. Do you agree that in Russia there are many adults living in dependence on their parents?
  5. How should kids be raised so that they become responsible and not live off their parents?

5 ways to build lasting self-esteem


Everyone is in favor of high self-esteem — but cultivating it can be surprisingly tough. Psychologist Guy Winch explains why — and describes smart ways we can help build ourselves up.

Many of us recognize the value of improving our feelings of self-worth. When our self-esteem is higher, we not only feel better about ourselves, we are more resilient as well. Brain scan studies demonstrate that when our self-esteem is higher, we are likely to experience common emotional wounds such as rejection and failure as less painful, and bounce back from them more quickly. When our self-esteem is higher, we are also less vulnerable to anxiety; we release less cortisol into our bloodstream when under stress, and it is less likely to linger in our system.

Cheating in School


There have always been kids that have chosen to cheat in school, but today’s tech gadgets have made it easier and more common than before. With the majority of teens and tweens carrying cell phones, answers to test questions can zing around a classroom in minutes. Here are some examples of the ways teens are cheating at school:

Morality, Empathy and Altruism


  1. What qualities does a high-minded person have?
  2. Do we need religion to be people of good morals? Are we obliged to religion for the existence of morality?
  3. The vision of morality is different in various cultures. Why?
  4. Is it necessary to create universal moral values? If so, what should they be like?

Respect and Tolerance


  1. Who do you respect most of all? Why?
  2. What qualities should person have to earn your respect?
  3. Have you been in a situation when you didn’t respect a person, but he/she did something that made you change your attitude to him/her? What did he/she do?
  4. Have you been in a situation when you weren’t respected by someone, but afterwards earned his/her respect? What had changed?


Personal Identity

  1. What views have you changed during your lifetime? How and why did you change them? Think about:
  • religious worldview;
  • political views;
  • attitude to bad habits;
  • attitude to money;
  • attitude to time;
  • views about relationships;
  • views about marriage and family;
  • views about friendship;
  • preference in music, books, movies.

Intelligence (revised)

  1. What is intelligence?
  2. What makes a person intelligent?
  3. Should a person read a lot to be intelligent?
  4. Do you need higher education to be intelligent?
  5. Should an intelligent person have high morality?
  6. Is being intelligent means being able to think critically?
  7. Does intelligence make people more attractive?
  8. Who is the most intelligent person around your way?
  9. Who is the most intelligent person among famous people? Why do you think so?

Personality (revised)

Questions for discussion:

  1. What forms our personality: our genes or the environment where we grow up? Explain your opinion, give examples.
  2. Do you think you can change a major characteristic of your personality if you make an effort? If so, what would you change?
  3. Do you think it’s possible to change any aspect of your personality?
  4. What personality traits do you consider to be important in a good friend / a boss / a partner?

Are men and women treated equally in this country?

Questions for discussion:

  1. Do you believe that you are supposed to act in certain ways and do certain things depending on who you are, a man or a woman?
  2. How has the attitude to women's role in the society changed in the past century? Has it ever changed at all for that matter?
  3. What patterns of behavior are considered to be appropriate for men but inappropriate for women?
  4. Do parents have different expectations for their sons and daughters in their families?

Knowledge is power: как говорить о знаниях

Знание и мудрость украшают человека. Чем больше ценной информации мы приобретаем, тем больше шансов, что мы будем принимать правильные решения. В английском языке человека, который много знает или разбирается в какой-то конкретной области, можно охарактеризовать словом 'knowledgeable': He's very knowledgeable about German literature.

Doctor, make me feel good!

​Questions for discussion:

  1. Are you interested in the way our body works?
  2. Have you ever wanted to become a doctor or a nurse?
  3. Why do some people choose the profession of a nurse, not a doctor?
  4. What do you think is the hardest thing in working as a doctor? As a nurse?
  5. What is a good and a bad doctor? How do you find out that a doctor is good?

It`s difficult to be God (revised)

  1. Would you like to be a person of great mind?
  2. Would you like to be a person of a great body?
  3. Would you like to have a super ability like:
  • clairvoyance;
  • telekinesis;
  • travelling through time; 
  • changing the past;
  • hearing thoughts of other people;
  • healing any diseases;
  • immortality?


Questions for discussion:

  1. What do you think of when you think of winter?
  2. What do you like more: winter or summer?
  3. What's the best part of winter?
  4. What's the worst part of winter?
  5. What is the best way to stay warm?

Work-life Balance (revised)

Loving your job is BAD for your career as you work too hard in the evenings and are outperformed by colleagues who come in refreshed

  • People who feel their job is integral to their life may find it hard to be productive
  • These people are less able to successfully disengage from work in the evenings 
  • This limits their energy levels the following morning and their ability to focus

Teenagers: Why do they rebel? (revised)

Teenagers say what REALLY annoys them about their mothers

Singing in the car, trying to be one of the gang and Facebook friend requests: Teenagers give their (toe-curling) views on what REALLY annoys them about their mothers

  • Joe Lawrence, 17, from London, is sick of his mother Julia singing in the car
  • Olivia Becci, 17, from London, wants her mother Anna-Maria to stop trying to be one of the girl gang when her friends come over to her house 
  • Seth Daker, 18, from Ripponden, West Yorkshire, wants his mother Nicky to stop sending him friend requests on social media including Facebook and Twitter

Critical Thinking

Why do lions have manes? And what noise should a new musical instrument make? Why Oxford University asks its applicants bizarre questions

  • Oxford University reveals the conundrums it poses to candidates in interviews
  • Law applicants could be asked about running red lights on empty roads at night
  • Biological sciences candidates face questions about why lions have manes
  • It comes just days before the October 15 deadline for would-be undergraduates to apply for a place to start at Oxford next autumn

New Year and Christmas

How to Make (and Keep) a New Year's Resolution

Are you making a resolution for 2018? Warning: More than half of all resolutions fail, but this year, they don’t have to be yours. Here’s how to identify the right resolution to improve your life, create a plan on how to reach it, and become part of the small group of people that successfully achieve their goal.

Is Empathy Overrated?

Reading: While it may result in tremendous good, empathy can also be narrow, biased and surprisingly insensitive, argues psychology professor Paul Bloom.

Does empathy make the world a better place? It certainly looks like it. After all, empathy drives people to treat others’ suffering as if it were their own, which then motivates action to make the suffering go away. I see the bullied teenager and might be tempted initially to join in with his tormentors, out of sadism or boredom or a desire to dominate or be popular, but then I empathize — I feel his pain, I feel what it’s like to be bullied — so I don’t add to his suffering. Maybe I even rise to his defense. Empathy is like a spotlight directing attention and aid to where it’s needed.


Dog's dinner: DNA clue to how dogs became our friends

Dogs have been dining on human food scraps since the early days of their domestication, it appears.

Our canine companions developed the ability to digest starchy foods during the farming revolution thousands of years ago, according to DNA evidence. Scientists think dogs may have been domesticated from wolves when they came into settlements, scrounging for food. Modern dogs can tolerate starch-rich diets, unlike their wolf cousins, which are carnivores.

Copyright and Internet Piracy

2317 New Editions from Amazon by Decades

Our Lost Culture: What We Lose From Having Killed The Public Domain

Yesterday, for Copyright Week, we wrote about transparency (and the lack of it in making copyright law). Today's issue is the public domain. While we just wrote about the lack of new works going into the public domain this year (as happens every year in the US), I've seen some copyright maximalists asking why this is a big deal, since all the works listed are readily available to purchase. This is uninformed in the extreme. In the past I've suggested that everyone interested in these issues owes it to themselves to read James Boyle's excellent book, The Public Domain, and I'll reiterate that recommendation now. Not surprisingly, the book is available online for free, though you can also purchase a copy, which is a worthwhile investment. 

Positive Thinking: Is it something we all need to learn?

Why pessimists have a reason to be cheerful

Whatever explains Japan’s chart-topping life expectancy, it isn’t being really chipper all the time

For critics of positive thinking like me, as well as for plain old curmudgeons (also like me, to be fair), it’s an awkward truth that an optimistic outlook does seem to lead to a healthier life. Scientists, with their annoying fixation on facts, have published study after study suggesting that an upbeat attitude protects you from cancer, heart disease and stroke. In one big analysis of American women, the most optimistic were 29% less likely to die, during a six-year follow-up, than the least; in another, involving men too, people with positive views of ageing ended up living longer.

Do we need psychologists?

Bosses should be sent on mental health courses to stop employees becoming stressed and depressed, claims major study as expert reveals tips to make you happier at work

  • Employees reported 18% less sick days if their manager went on the course
  • Hectic workloads can often lead to poor mental health - resulting in sick days
  • The world-first University of New South Wales research is dubbed 'promising'

Absolutely fantastic: как сказать "чрезвычайно" без 'very' и 'extremely'

Нередко во время разговора на английском языке нам не хватает слов, которые могут заменить уже приевшиеся ‘very’ и ‘extremely’. В этой статье речь пойдёт о наречиях меры и степени, а вернее, о тех из них, которые мы ставим перед прилагательными для усиления их значения. 

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