Good Sites for Learning English

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There are so many sites that we can use to learn English via internet. Here, I will name some of them which I consider very good to improve our English.
1. esl-lab.org
For those who will blast their listening, they have to visit this site and try the rehearsals. It is contained sets of listening materials including the recordings, the questions, the script and the vocabulary indexes.
2. abcnews.com
You can either hear and read the news. Its combination will lead you to have good pronunciation.
(To be continued)

Save Indonesian Football!

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Many people think Indonesian football has recovered from an injury. A saviour has come through the form of La Nyala Mataliti (LNM). The National Team has been rebuilt which consist of the best players.
However, I strongly believe that it is entering an extreme danger. The Mafias have already comeback.
Have a look at the men behind LNM: Joko Driyono and Hinca Panjaitan. All of them are the “old player”. It is a reincarnation of Nurdin Halid regime with the same man behind the gun, Nirwan D Bakrie (NDB).
We agree that Djohar Arifin regime is incapable, but by giving LNM the authority is a clear blunder. Apparantly, Djohar Arifin don’t has ammunition anymore since Arifin Panigoro go back down.
Corruption and game fixation are the real threat. PSSI may be the most unaccountable body in this country. Law enforcement in this body is very weak. Moreover the NDB would set the champion of the league. So we already know who will win the leage? Who else.

For information related to mafia in PSSI, please check @footballnesia favorites.

Together We Can

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6.30 am, December 24th 2010, we had succeeded in reaching top of Mountain Semeru, the highest land in Java. It was rather late from our plan to reach the peak before sunrise. It was not easy to step in this spot. We had to struggle more than five hours in scrambling more than 45o sands slope, one kilometer before the peak.

Even, the difficulties had rose since in the planning when we had to arrange the transport, logistics and equipment.  As an expedition starter, I had to ensure this trip would run well. It was difficult enough to divide the portion of work for nine expedition members, which came from five different cities. In order to ease the work, we pointed some members to be responsible for preparing each section.

However, we could tackle the problems, and in December 21st 2010, all team members gathered in Tumpang, the last town that we would pass. We completed all the requirement here and we were ready to start our journey.

The hardest problem emerged in “summit attack” day. Early in the morning, at 01:00 am we started to move headed the top. Three of the member has made a leap in the front, far away from the others. Meanwhile, six of us were left behind because one of the members was suffering from hypothermia. He kept vomiting and trembling. In that time, it was crossed in my mind that we would not succeed to achieve our goal. My determination was that we had to reach the top together.

We had been walking for three hours and there were no signs that the peak of the mountain was close to us. The horrible moment happened when one of us unintentionally touched the head-big stone and dropped it. It was rolling and hit my friend’s leg who step in the lower slope. Luckily, it was not cause serious injury.

The sun had risen and we still struggling in the middle of sea of sand. Fortunately, my friend was getting better and he could walk steadily. We kept giving him support and motivation.

Finally, at 06.30 am we reach the peak. Some of us were crying soon after we step in this highest land in Java. It was a great moment when we saw the surrounding view. The sea of clouds was so amazing. We were the one above the clouds.

If I Could Go Back

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If I could go back to the place and time in the past, I would go back to my senior high school period. I think I did not do anything in that period.  I just realized this after I went to the college and saw the other students had a lot of experience during their senior high school period. They had done many extracurricular activities and contributed more to the society instead of sat only in the class and became a geek.

As an example, my friend in college experienced in interchange student program. He lived in Australia for one year. He got priceless learning with different system, could learn another nation culture and of course he could improve his English significantly. My other friend had climbed most of the high mountains in the island, even he had succeeded in reaching top of Mountain Semeru, the highest mountain in Java and top of Mountain Rinjani, the 3rd highest mountain in Indonesia.

I am very envy to my wife. She had done so many extracurricular activities in her senior high school time. She joined Girl Scout and became the commander. She also became a member of art group, which actively produced and performed poems and dramas.  Furthermore she joined adventure club and marching group.

On the other hand, in my senior high school time, I just only concentrated to achieve good grade in all subjects. I went to school in 06.00 am and went back home in the afternoon. It was such a boring activities because I did it every day, six days a week.

All in all, if I could go back, I would join my senior high school football club, active in adventure club and doing something that have benefit to the society such as involved in student science research.

Breaking The Habits

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Here these are the messages conveyed by Mr Safuady, the chief of Human Resource Development Training Center  during the opening of SPIRIT III Pre Departure Program, January 14th  2013:

Character is the main key to build this country.

You are the creator of your destiny.

Education is not only to educate but also to prosper.

A ship anchored in port is safe, but it is not the purpose of ship be made. A ship is made to face the ferocity of the oceans.

Build character must be begun with coercion. Coercion => forced => used => habit

Throw away your snob!

Be the best you can be!

Set your dream and achieve success, work earlier before anyone else works, work longer than others, and reduce sleeping and leisure time!

Be diligent and persistent!

By reading, listening, and writing, each can only absorb 15% of information we received. By sharing with others and do it repeatedly, we will get 100%.

STAPALA’s New Climbing Wall

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Stapala climbing wall

Stapala climbing wall

In the end of March, STAPALA has a new climbing wall after its old climbing wall has been restored. It is seventeen meters in height and made from fiber panels that replaced the wood panels. This climbing wall used to be the highest climbing in Jakarta when it was built in 1996.

It is very challenging wall climbing since it has two “roofs” and an “over hang” (sloping wall) in the middle of it. It also have “bouldering” wall surrounding its steel construction, which equipped with so many “points” that can be chosen by the climbers to make climbing path. Moreover, the constructor ensures the safety by set the anchors straightly in the steel frame.

In addition, with very nice color combination between yellow and blue, it is an eye-catching building amid the college ones.

Stapala cimbing wall

Stapala cimbing wall.2

Wanna try this climbing wall?

Please come to STAPALA-STAN, Jl Bintaro Utama, Bintaro Jaya Sektor V, Jakarta Selatan.

Phone 021-7371171.

We provide complete equipments and qualified belayers.

Countries I Want to Visit

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One of my dreaming countries to visit is England. Growing up, I am an England Premiere League fan. I have been watching this football league since 1996. My favorite club is Manchester United, one of the best football clubs in the world, which have won Champions League three times. In the future, I want to watch MU match directly in Old Trafford stadium. I want to feel the great atmosphere amid seventy thousand fans yell.

The other country I want to visit is Germany. I had studied German for three years in senior high school. Although I have already forgotten all the materials :D, the impressions of this country is still remained on my mind. It would be nice to live in this very tidy country.

Being a World Bank grantee drag me closer to the dream. I can choose any country to get my master degree. I have planned to choose European country so that I can visit those countries during my study. Thank God for giving me this opportunity.

How to Improve Our English?

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Some people take English course to improve their English. Others take particular English course such as TOEFL or IELTS course to pass those test. What we have to realize is that English is a language. It needs a process to be mastered. Furthermore, in order to fluent in English, we have to apply it in our daily life. The pattern I got from people who got high score in TOEFL test is that them usually one of these persons:

  1. movie lover;
  2. music lover; or
  3. novel lover.

No matter what they have taken English course or not, they have good English because of their habits to listen or read in English. For example, the daughter of my senior in college who got 112 in iBT TOEFL test have been reading English novels since she was in elementary school. Surprisingly, she has never taken English course before. Now she has been accepted in five top universities in America: University of Texas in Austin, University of Washington at Seattle, University of Wisconsin-Madison, University of California at San Diego, and University of Illinois at Urbana-Campaign. Meanwhile, my friend who very fluent in English has habits to read English novels and watching western movies or TV series without bahasa Indonesia subtitles. The other example, my friends who got more than 600 in PBT score has managed to read English novels since junior high school. Even though in the beginning she had difficulties to comprehend the story in the novels and had to been helped by dictionary, recently she could read English novels without dictionary anymore.

To sum up, how to improve your English by using their method?

  1. Watching movie using English subtitles.
  2. Listening and singing music using lyrics (for example using “Minilyrics”), it will improve your pronunciation.
  3. Reading English novel; provide English dictionary on your side.

My Strategies to Get High Score in iBT TOEFL

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Some universities require more than 80 in iBT TOEFL for those who will apply for; even, most of European universities require more than 90. Since I got “only” 79 in my last iBT test, I have to strive to achieve more score in the next test. My target is to achieve 100, and here these are my strategies in achieving that score:

  1. I will ask my wife to give me minimal two questions a day, which I have to answer each question in one minute.
  2. I will write minimal one essay, journal/diary or article in English and post it to my blogs.
  3. I will read grammar material at least fifteen minutes per day.
  4. I will read one article/news in the morning and one article/news in the afternoon.
  5. I will memorize five new words every day.
  6. I will undergo test simulation for reading and listening section minimal one passage for each section.
  7. I will set tight schedule in go to bed and wake up.
  8. I will watch movies/documentary movies/TV series (optional)
  9. I will listen to the music/radio (optional).
Num. Description Time table
1 Wake up 04.30 am
2 Read news and collect new words 05.00 am
3 Rehearsal for reading and listening 05.30 – 07.00 am
4 Reading news 16.30 pm
5 Watching Movie 17.00 pm
6 Rehearsal for speaking 19.30 pm
7 Reading grammar material 20.30 pm
8 Rehearsal for writing 21.00 pm
9 Memorize new words 22.00 pm
10 Go to bed 22.30 pm
11 Test simulation in all sections: Reading, Listening, Speaking and Writing at the weekend

I hope these strategies will help me to achieve my target. Furthermore, I can chase my dream to go to Europe.

Travel Jogja-Wonosari Gunungkidul

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Selama ini kendaraan umum yang bisa dijadikan moda transportasi dari kota Jogja menuju Wonosari adalah bus, minibus serta taksi. Bus dan minibus tarifnya cukup murah, cukup 6rb rupiah dengan risiko kepanasan dan terpapar polusi dari asap kendaraan :D. Maklum armada busnya sudah tua tanpa AC. Sedangkan tarif taksi di atas 150rb.

Baru tahu ternyata dari Jogja ke Wonosari, ibukota kecamatan Gunungkidul ada transportasi umum selain bis yang bisa kita gunakan sebagai alternatif. Kita bisa naik Travel Jogja-Pacitan dan turun di sepanjang jalan yang dilewati. Memang jika kita ingin turun di wonosari dan sekitarnya travel tidak bisa mengantar door to door, tapi setidaknya ada pilihan lain selain naik bis dan minibis.

Untuk harganya, jika kita turun di Wonosari dsk dikenai tarif Rp 60rb rupiah. Mungkin tarif yang tinggi ini dikarenakan kita dikenakan tarif full jarak jauh sampai Pacitan. Gak apalah, jika kita punya bayi yang belum layak naik bis, travel ini bisa menjadi pilihan.

Berikut ini salah satu penyedia jasa Travel Jogja-Pacitan via Wonosari:

Aneka Jaya
Departs at 7 AM, 12 PM, and 3 PM
North Ring Road, Jombor, Yogyakarta
Phone: +62 274 3044560, +62 85228724535, +62 81804300615

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