IELTS speaking questions and model answers, part 3
Part 2 are also available.
Let’s talk more about families living together
Q1: What are the benefits of younger and older generations living together?
One of many advantages that young and older family members residing in the same residence would be the splitting of expenses between the income earning members thus alleviating financial stress. Additionally there is a wealth of knowledge that can be exchanged with elders teaching the youth life skills they have acquired like crafts and recipes and the youth perhaps assisting with technology like computers and smartphones. Another that comes to mind would be the sharing of household chores, for example food preparation, laundry and shopping. Although there are many more, the final benefit would be the strengthening of family relationships and comradeship.
Q2: What are the disadvantages of younger and older generations living together?
The drawbacks of different generations living together would begin with the lack of privacy. With so many people living under one roof everyone would know your business. You would rarely be alone and to have quiet times would be difficult. This would be tough on me as I value my relaxation and rest. Also I would lose my feeling of independent and being in control of my life and surroundings.
Q3: Do people in your country prefer to get help from family members or friends?
I believe choosing to seek help from my family or friends would be dependent of what assistance I am seeking. For example, I wouldn’t ask for financial assistance from a friend as he would most likely be in a similar situation. I would not want to jeopardize my friendships with them worrying about if and when I could repay my debt. Family however would be my choice for help on my future like continuing education or changing jobs as they can give worthwhile advice based on their experience.
Q4: Is it important to visit family members often?
Many share my belief that family is important and try to visit frequently. Today’s busy lifestyle does restrict the number of times families can get together. Family can be also helpful with advice and be supportive. I always look forward to going to my village to meet up with friends and family during special events like Chinese New Year as I enjoy the shared meals and catching up on the local news and rumors.
Let’s talk more about people in the news
Q1: What kinds of people, in your country, are usually in the news?
Politicians are frequently in the news announcing new government policies and legislation. It is important for them to keep their constituents informed and helps with possible reelection efforts. Actors, entertainers and musicians are also in the news a lot announcing new films, concerts, and promoting upcoming entertainment events. Sport management and players are also announcing future contests and commenting on past and future performance. They want to build fan loyalty and attendance at their games. The news occasionally will reveal a celebrities’ personal accomplishments, issues and transgressions.
Q2: Are stories about celebrities in the news always true?
Of course not all news is true about celebrities and famous people. Newscasters will exaggerate celebrity news to boost audience viewership and many reports are pure speculation. For example we all love gossip but just because someone is seen dining with another person doesn’t mean they are in a serious relationships. Social media has a huge impact on the news and spreads many falsehoods, speculation and gossip. I take most things I read with a grain of salt and will search for supporting articles for verification.
Q3: Why is the news often about famous people?
Almost every form of media including TV, newspapers, tabloids and magazines pay a great deal of attention to the professional and personal lives of famous people. It seems the public cannot get enough if this kind of news. Of course promoters want to keep their clients in the news to advertize upcoming events like movies, tv shows and sporting events. I believe that the media had become intrusive and should present a balanced view in respect to celebrities.
Q4: Could superstars bring positive influence to the public?
I believe superstars can and do provide positive things for the public. For example Leonardo Dicaprio is not only a very accomplished entertainer but is also an outspoken supporter of environmental and animal issues which educate the public. Also many superstars share their fame and fortune with performing at charity events and making donations to worthwhile causes. Many youngsters have superstars as their role models which encourages them to study the arts like acting and singing or excel at a sport.
Let’s talk more about learning
Q1: What qualities do you think a good teacher should have?
I think the most import quality a teacher should have is good communication skills. Even though he might have a deep knowledge of the subject, a teacher needs to effectively communicate that knowledge in an interesting and informative way. He or she should recognize when the class is having difficulties and provide a different approach and field questions from students. A good teacher will also make themselves available to provide individual help to students.
Q2: Do you think young people learn faster than old people?
It is accepted that children learn faster than adults. A youngster’s brain has a natural ability to absorb information as part of their development. They are curious, creative and experimental in arts, sports and other activities early in life. Adults on the other hand have learned the skills necessary in life and usually focus on their day to day activities and work. If an adult is removed from the education system for a while, they may have difficulties with planning and studying a new subject.
Q3: What do you think is the best age for children to go to school?
I believe children should start school at age 3 or 4 depending on their development. Rather than daycare which is essentially a babysitting environment, a good preschool with help the child develop social skills and promote creativity with art and music. Additionally preschool will develop a sense of pride, accomplishment and self-confidence. These early developed skills will make the transition to kindergarten easier and less stressful.
Q4: Do people in your country prefer to study alone or in groups?
Although some prefer to study alone without interruptions, most students in China prefer to study as a group. Group studying provides the benefit of exchanging ideas and different explanations which can make studying more interactive and less tedious. Also they learn to interact with each other and have discussions and accept different views on a subject. Most importantly is in their future career they will most like be part of a team and the group study experience will be make the teamwork project easier.
Let’s talk more about children and help
Q1: What kind of help should parents give to their children?
Children learn by example from their parents. If the parents are polite and respectful the children will do likewise. Parenting also means providing encouragement and motivating their kids with praise and compliments. Spending quality time and participating in activities is another important way to bond and interact with children. Perhaps the most important help a parent provide is encouraging dialogue as it develops self-expression and encourages them to talk about their difficulties and stresses.
Q2: Should parents help their children with their homework every day?
Helping with homework and doing the homework are two different things. I believe, parents should not do a person’s homework nor be a tutor and look over a student’s shoulder constantly. For example when I was studying, the computer was in a common area and my parents were available should I need help on a question or problem. This worked out well for me as I could focus on my study and only call them when necessary.
Q3: Should parents give their teenage children dating advice?
I support parents providing dating advice to teenagers since they can share their experiences. My father told me to not waste my time and reject anyone that was impolite, disrespectful, had extremely bad habits like drinking and drugs, and avoid people that are abusive verbally and physically. My mom’s advice was focused on communication. She stated that you and your partner should be comfortable talking about goals, desires, dreams and issues of conflict and take the time to get to know each other. In my opinion, both provided good advice and I likely avoided disastrous relationships and heartbreak.
Q4: Can children provide any kind of help to parents?
There are many ways children can assist and teach their parents. When I was still attending primary school, I would help my mom with food preparation, setting the table and help to clean up after meals. When I got older, helping with housework like cleaning, keeping my room tidy and laundry were my regular chores. As a teenager, I had computer classes in school and helped my parents with new technology, for example computer software and phone applications. So yes, children can help their parents.
Let’s talk more about apologizing
Q1: On what types of occasions do people usually apologize to others?
Often we have minor incidences like bumping into someone or accidently cutting in line and a simple “sorry” is all that is necessary. Sometimes we commit minor things, or example like being late for a meeting or forgetting to bring home groceries. We might say or do something that hurts someone you know and a more sincere apology is appropriate. The worse situations are when our actions or inactions, we cause serious emotional or physical damage.
Q2: Do people in your country like to apologize?
People are human and we all make mistakes. From my observations the Chinese culture encourages politeness and concern for others. Notwithstanding that we would prefer not to hurt or harm anyone, we are courteous and quick to apologize when the situation calls for it. So I would say we like to apologize.
Q3: Do you think people should apologize for anything wrong they do?
When people cause harm to another they should apologize showing concern for their actions and providing sympathy for the harm they caused. As an example, recently I has hit from behind while stopped at a traffic light. I fell off my motorbike and suffered some minor scrapes and bruises. The lady was concerned and quickly apologized which I accepted.
Q4: Why do some people refuse to apologize to others?
Some people are reluctant to apologize because they are embarrassed and don’t want to “lose face”. With more serious incidents people will not apologize for fear of incriminating themselves and risking financial damages. Politicians are notorious not owning up to their mistakes and put a spin or an outright lie about an error to maintain voter support. Most people however are polite and accept responsibility for their actions.
Let’s talk more about messages
Q1: Do you think traditional letters are a good way to send messages?
In my opinion technology has taken over the postal service and written communication has decreased considerably. Today with social media and messaging applications, communication is convenient and quick. Postcards are fewer too as a person can post a picture and description on the internet. Some written correspondence still happens for long and detailed information.
Q2: In what situations is it better to make a phone call than send a message to someone?
There are many situations where a telephone call we be more effective than voice or text messaging. For example, you don’t know if the recipient is listening for message notices and you have an urgent message that needs a quick response or you may need some immediate information to make a decision. Also during a phone call, you can use intonation to express your feelings better. Lastly, I think a phone call is more personal and allows easier communication
Q3: In your country do people prefer to send email or text messages?
Where I live people prefer to use texting as opposed to email as mobile application provides text notifications quickly. Also email is mainly for longer and more detailed communication that in most cases doesn’t need an immediate reply. In my case, for example I prefer to use my computer rather than my phone to weed through the numerous messages, advertisements and spam.
Q4: Is technology having a negative impact on communication among people?
I believe that technology has indeed affected communication. As an example before the Internet people would have to write letters which would contain more information as people had to pay for the service and wait for replies. In the past written communication was more formal with proper grammar and punctuation. Today’s technology allows us to communicate quickly by texting and emailing and quick replies usually means we usually have short messages and expect short replies.
Let’s talk more about teams
Q1: What are some reasons why people join teams?
People prefer to play on a team for many reasons. Foremost I think you have comradeship playing in a team environment as opposed to an individual sport. Team members will help you with your training and develop skills. You also have the team spirit and fellow players to share celebrations of wins and achievements individually and as a team. Playing on the team also gives you the opportunity to meet new people and form new friendships.
Q2: What causes disagreements within a team?
On a sport team conflicts can arise between players and coaches. For example players may not feel that they are being played enough or being recognized for their accomplishments. Criticisms of other players will also cause conflicts and disagreements where one player may criticize another teammate who feels they have to defend themselves. Disagreements in other team groups like school study groups and workplace groups have conflicts in regards to workload and contribution to the tasks.
Q3: Do you think it is good for children to join a team?
Children will gain many positive advantages when participating in a sport team. It will teach them how to interact with other people and make new friends. Team work teaches, learning to work with others and improve their individual and team skill. Teamwork can improve their self-confidence, and develop pride in their individual and team accomplishments.
Q4: What skills do team leaders require in the workplace?
There are many qualities a good team leader should have. Communication is probably the most important attribute. It is very important for a leader to effectively convey duties and responsibilities. Time management is also a very important part of a leader’s job. Lastly an effective manage should lead by example and be willing pitch in and help others.
Let’s talk more about travelling
Q1: How do people usually travel long distances in your country?
Destinations outside the country are usually travel by airplane because the airports in foreign countries are prepared for international travelers. Planes also provide long distance travel within the country. Alternately trains and buses are less expensive and although the trips may be longer, the seating is usually more comfort and you have the advantage of enjoying the scenery during the trip
Q2: In what ways can traffic conditions in a city be improved?
Traffic conditions in the city can be a nightmare at times especially during the rush hour. The flow of traffic can be improved with properly synced traffic lights and traffic police to help direct traffic in busy intersections. Infrastructure such as overpasses and underpasses, although expensive may help improve the flow of vehicles within the city.
Q3: Do you think people will still drive a car if public transportation is free?
Public transit is relatively inexpensive as compared to owning and operating a motor vehicle at the moment. Providing free transportation may encourage some to use public transit as a alternative to driving. Many people also need their vehicle for more than just commuting, for work for example sales people. Also even if it was free many people would prefer their own vehicle because it is comfortable and convenient.
Q4: How can transportation in rural areas of your country be improved?
Transportation in rural areas has its own problems which need to be improved. Frequently highways are in need of repair and better engineering and maintenance would improve transportation. Public transportation such as buses and trains are improving but more modern buses and faster trains would be very beneficial for the traveling public.
Let’s talk more about mobile phones
Q1: Is it necessary to have laws on the use of mobile phones?
It has been proven around the world that laws are necessary to prohibit the use of cell phone in different circumstances and places. The main danger is use of smartphones while driving has distracted many drivers causing accidents and fatalities. Regulations are already in place that cell phones cannot be used when an aircraft is taking off or landing. Another rule that would be beneficial is the restriction of using a telephone in quiet areas such as a theater.
Q2: Should young children have mobile phones?
I believe young children in primary school have no practical use for a cell or mobile phone. There does become a time, however, when they have more independence and participate in many after school activities that may need to be in contact with their parents to arrange pick up times and transportation. There are phones specifically designed for this age group with tracking applications so parents can know where their children are and they provide simple functions like texting and calling.
Q3: Do people in your country prefer to use a computer or a mobile phone?
Most of the population in my country use smart phones as they are convenient, easy to carry, and have many features that a computer does not have such as voice recording and video. Computers however are the technology of choice at home where children and adults can do homework, research and enjoy multimedia with the convenience of a larger screen and keyboard.
Q4: Do you think mobile phones could totally replace computers in the future?
echnology has advanced so much in the Past 20 years that it is hard to predict what might be available in the future. Will smart phones or mobile phones replace computers? It is difficult question as there maybe alternate technologies. That being said, I don’t believe that smartphones will completely replace computers because computers have more power and storage space.
Let’s talk more about the weather
Q1: Can the weather have any impact on people’s daily activities?
Of course weather can have different impacts on one’s daily routines. For example I bicycle to work but during a rain storm I take public transportation. If the weather is too hot, cold or raining, people would be less inclined to go to parks and green areas and likely would participate in indoor activities to relax and chill out like theaters and restaurants. Shopping habits could also change with outdoor markets losing business to shopping centers.
Q2: Why do people do different kinds of sports in different seasons?
Where I grew up we had distinctive seasons where it would be hot in the summer and cold, with snow in the winter. Naturally the weather would play a part in the sports that we would participate in based on the season. During the summer we would enjoy outdoor activities such as hiking, football and other fair-weather sports. During the winter however we would ski and snowboard or move indoors and play sports such as badminton and basketball.
Q3: What kind of weather do people in your country like most?
I would say most people in my country enjoy dry and warm weather. They can enjoy outdoor activities such as hiking, fishing, exploring and sightseeing. You’ll also see many people in the parks playing badminton, exercising to music or simply relaxing and enjoying the scenery. This type of weather is also beneficial for transportation options and many people will go sightseeing or visit their friends and family.
Q4: Is the weather in your country changing?
We see in the news on a daily basis weather extremes and changes occurring around the world. My country is no exception. We seem to have a less precipitation during the rainy season and temperatures have become more extreme. Additionally droughts and flooding in the rural areas have become more common. Has human activity contributed to climate change and what might be done to alleviate it are subjects of debate.
Let’s talk more about local areas
Q1: What are some of the main problems in local areas?
The term local areas could apply to cities and the countryside depending on where you live. The large cities areas suffer from air pollution, traffic congestion and noise. Outside of the large cities local areas would be in need of infrastructure improvements and features including things like libraries, better roads, highways and public transportation options. Rural areas could use more employment opportunities so the youth would not have to live in the big cities.
Q2: What are the best solutions to these problems?
I believe the number one issue in my country is air and water pollution. Studies have shown hundreds of thousands of people die prematurely and suffer from respiratory illnesses. Portable water is also becoming less available. It may seem simplistic but I believe that encouraging high paying and clean industries away from the big cities and manufacturing centers would help with some of these issues. This would encourage young people too not move to the big city thereby reducing traffic stress and pollution.
Q3: Do people in your country like joining social groups in their community?
Human beings as a whole are social animals and interact with friends and neighbors in many different social activities. People in China like to socialize and you’ll see them in restaurants sharing meals and exchanging stories. Also you will see many that are involved in sporting and exercise activities. For example, I love going to restaurants with my friends to relax and hangout and when I was in high school I joined the football team.
Q4: What are the benefits of living in a friendly community?
Having friendly neighbors in the community has many benefits. You are more likely to meet people whose company you enjoy and become friends. With friends you may get invited to a special event such as a birthday party or wedding. Good neighbors are always respectful of your space and try not to disturb your peace and quiet.
Let’s talk about celebrations
Q1: What personal events do people usually celebrate?
Family celebrations that come to mind are birthdays, graduations and weddings. Western style birthday traditions are making their way into Chinese birthday celebrations. Graduations are celebrated with a graduation ceremony and presentation of degrees earned. After a Chinese wedding ceremony which usually takes place in a city hall office, the genuine celebration generally occurs later at a wedding banquet and reception.
Q2: How do people celebrate their personal events?
Most personal events are celebrated in my hometown where many of my friends and relatives come too share a meal and provide congratulations to a bride, groom, graduate or birthday party celebrant. These celebrations are usually informal with lots of interaction with friends and family catching up personal news. The ladies prepare lots of food with their specialty dishes and family favorites. After everyone has had enough to eat we start up the music, sing karaoke and dance.
Q3: Do you think it is necessary to spend a lot of money on celebrations?
I don’t believe that family and cultural celebrations need to be extravagant and expensive. Most people are content and excited to have been invited and have an opportunity to share with their friends and family a meal and drinks. Most participants are happy to listen to the music and exchange stories since they might not have spoken for a while. This type of celebration will be of modest in cost with everybody enjoying themselves.
Q4: Do you think the government wastes too much money on celebrations?
Citizens have different views about the spending by the government for celebrations and special events. Well many people believe that money is wasted, I would argue that money spent on traditional holiday celebrations outweigh the drawbacks. Events give people an opportunity to take a break from work and escape the hustle and bustle of the cities to return to their home villages. Although it may be expensive holidays and celebrations, provide pride of country and happier people.
Let’s talk more about crowded places
Q1: Do people in your country like to go to crowded places?
I think most people would prefer less crowded places so they would have more personal space. However many events and venues are very popular and attract a large audience, for example music concerts. Other attractions such as historical sites, cultural buildings and entertainment sites also can attract large audiences. Fortunately where I live there are some quiet and not crowded green spaces and parks to relax and enjoy the scenery.
Q2: How can the problem of traffic congestion be solved?
Traffic congestion within cities is an obvious problem taking a lot of time for commuters to travel and creates air pollution. The obvious solution would be improved and inexpensive public transit to reduce the use of private automobiles. I also believe that encouraging high paying and clean industries away from the big cities and manufacturing centers would help with some of these issues. This would encourage young people too not move to the big city thereby reducing traffic stress and pollution.
Q3: Why do people still like to live in big cities?
Despite the drawbacks of living in a large city which would include pollution, crowding and higher expenses, many people prefer to live in the cities. Some are required for educational and working opportunities and some people prefer the big cities as they can provide shopping opportunities, entertainment venues, restaurants and interesting places to visit and hang out.
Q4: Do you think cities will be even larger in the future?
Due to the world’s increasing population cities in the future cities are likely to be larger both in area and population density. This trend has been happening for many generations as cities provide better education and job opportunities. As urban areas become larger, cities will need to address issues such as pollution and congestion. They will have to invest in rapid fast public transportation public amenities like libraries and parks.
Let’s talk more about challenges
Q1: Do you think parents should give kids challenges?
Challenges for children are important for their development as it is an essential life skill. Learning how to cope with problems will help them both in their youth and as adults. Parents should be challenging their children with easy tasks at first and more difficult ones as they build their abilities and self-confidence. Parents also should be supportive and not over stress their kids.
Q2: What challenges do you think children might benefit from most?
Children will face many challenges as they grow up. Some will be everyday challenges like interacting with other and some should be provided by their parents. Two challenges I feel parents should focus on with their children are health and management of money as they are important skills for them to learn for their future. Encouraging and challenging them to exercise and participate in athletic activities would be beneficial. I also suggest parents provide an allowance for children so they can learn money management and prioritize spending.
Q3: What is the most challenging thing for adults?
We have many challenges for example time management and stress management. We live in a fast and demanding culture where work and social activities require a lot of time. Good time management skills will make life easier. Many adults also struggle with monetary issues trying to budget and live within their means. These and many others can be very stressful and reducing stress by exercising and taking some time out to relax are important.
Q4: Do you think its beneficial for senior citizens to have challenges?
As the expression goes if you don’t use it, you lose it. I think the challenges for senior citizens are keeping their bodies and their minds active and healthy. Both my parents do yoga as their indoor activity to keep fit and weather permitting enjoy going to the park to exercise to music with their friends. Keeping your mind active is also important and my dad is an avid reader and my mom loves to knit. My dad also enjoys going to the park and playing chess with friends.
Let’s talk more about skills
Q1: What skills are important for people these days?
We have many challenges that require considerable skill, for example time management and money management. We live in a fast and demanding culture where work and social activities require a lot of time. Good time management skills will make life easier. Many adults also struggle with monetary issues trying to budget and live within their means. These and many others can be very stressful and stress management like exercising and taking some time out to relax are important.
Q2: What is the difference between skills required in the past and those at present?
I think things were easier in the past and the necessary skills we’re not as demanding as they are today. With changing innovation and technology many more employment opportunities are available which requires many different skills. For example, communication and interaction with colleagues is a skill that is necessary to succeed. Also learning the more difficult technological and other skills like computer use can be demanding. In conclusion, I believe times were easier than they are today.
Q3: Do you think teamwork and communication skills are important?
I believe that communication and teamwork skills are essential to succeed in today’s society. I learned in college that group study sessions were more effective than studying alone. I learned to listen, respect others and consider their opinions and also learned to negotiate and compromise. These skills I also use in my workplace and they have been beneficial to me.
Q4: What kind of skills might become more important in the future?
It is difficult to predict what changes might occur and what appropriate skills will be necessary in the future. If I must speculate, In the future I foresee AI, artificial intelligence, and robotics being in great demand. I believe, computer and robotics skills will be necessary as those seem to be areas that are in their infant stage and are being researched and developed.
Let’s talk more about uniforms
Q1: Do you think students should wear school uniforms?
I agree that uniforms should be compulsory attire when attending secondary school. They are practical and reduce this peer pressure in regards to clothes and fashion. Other advantages include not having to decide what to wear everyday which makes it easier to get ready in the mornings. Additionally it is easy to recognize other students from your school so you can hang out and socialize. It also encourages pride in your school.
Q2: What types of occupations should wear a uniform?
Many occupations require uniforms to make it easy for the public to identify, for example police and emergency personnel wear uniforms that make it easy to seek assistance. Health providers like doctors and nurses are easily recognized by their uniforms are durable and easy to keep clean. Other uniforms or maybe more descriptive dress codes are a common practice among professionals working for recognized companies. Many people can be seen wearing company jackets with suitable shirts and ties.
Q3: Should companies ask for employees’ opinions about the design of uniforms?
Uniforms are important for public recognition and practicality. I believe management should consult with their employees about the uniforms that they desire. Employees with have a better understanding of what uniform features and design would be best for the jobs that they are in. I also believe employees would have more pride and would take better care of uniforms that they helped design.
Q4: Do you think it is becoming more popular for people to wear uniforms?
Uniforms are compulsory in many occupations for example the military and police therefore in those occupations we would not gain anymore popularity. However I am of the opinion that people like to be identified with their professions and their companies and uniforms fulfill that desire. Uniforms also removes the peer pressure in regards to fashion and are practical and durable. In conclusion, I feel that uniforms will become more common in the future.
Let’s talk more about live performances
Q1: What’s the difference between watching a performance live and watching it on TV?
When watching a performance on television you are usually by yourself or perhaps with friends and family. The TV gives you the opportunity to adjust the volume and record for viewing in the future. Attending a live performance is an experience totally different in that you are sharing the entertainment many others in the audience. You can feel the audience’s excitement and appreciation of the performance. Also you can feel the sound and see the special effects that are not as prevalent when watching TV.
Q2: Do people in your country prefer live music concerts or live sports?
I believe people in my country prefer live sporting events rather than music concerts. Music concerts can be exciting and entertaining but many people find them too crowded enter noisy. Sporting events however are very popular as people can identify with the team and can cheer and interact with other spectators. Being part of a sport audience also allows you to get up and move around and perhaps have some food and drink during intermissions.
Q3: Should the government provide money to promote traditional performances?
I think it is important for people to embrace their heritage and culture therefore performances would be very special and entertaining. People also like to get together and share experiences. As many of these performances would not necessarily happen if not organized by the government providing their monetary support I think it is important and necessary.
Q4: Do you think learning drama or dancing is helpful for children?
Children have many development difficulties and I believe dancing and drama will address some of those problems. Many children are shy and do not like to be noticed therefore to help them overcome shyness, performing would be very helpful. Also these activities would help children work and interact with others. Lastly I would mention that drama and music would also give children an appreciation of the arts which they may pursue or enjoy when they get older.
Let’s talk more about health
Q1: Do you think people in your country are generally healthy?
Overall I would say the vast majority of people in my country are healthy. Physical activity and good dietary habits are promoted through advertising and having areas available for exercise, for example, parks and green spaces. However, there are many people that do not take care of themselves. Some bad habits include smoking, drinking in excess, eating fattening and not exercising enough
Q2: What can governments do to improve people’s health?
Government should advertise healthy lifestyles to educate the population about the necessity of good health and what healthy habits including nutrition and exercise can provide. The government should also strictly enforce nonsmoking regulations and sale of alcoholic beverages to minors. Another deterrent would be to implement taxes on unhealthy snacks and beverages to encourage better alternate foods.
Q3: What activities can schools organize for children to keep fit?
Healthy food and exercise are very important for a child’s growing body. Schools should provide physical education and health classes to promote a good lifestyle. Schools can provide opportunities for children to exercise, such as sports days, team sports and hiking or walking trips. For example when I was in high school we had a number of physical and running challenges that I competed in against fellow schoolmates
Q4: Do you think people are healthier now than in the past?
I believe people were healthier in the past than they are today. In the past work was usually more labor intensive, people would walk to many places and food was more natural and not processed. Today we consume of lot of manufactured and unhealthy food. In addition air and water pollution has made our environment toxic leading to many health issues.
Let’s about pets
Q1: Do people in your country like taking care of pets?
People in my country enjoy providing for their pets. A pet need a lot of attention, specialized foods and exercise. People enjoy being responsible for their pets and animals can encourage their owner to get out of the house, for example taking their dog for a walk. In return a pet provides companionship, entertainment and a purpose in life.
Q2: Do you think it is safe for animals to live in cities?
Due to the number of animals in a city, life in the city can be dangerous for a pet especially with traffic volumes and interactions with other animals. Unfortunately I have seen many dogs and cats injured and killed in traffic. I’ve also witnessed many dog and cat fights resulting in cuts and bruises. Due to the density of animals within the city, they are also more susceptible to many diseases including parvovirus and rabies.
Q3: What problems are caused by keeping pets?
Pets provide companionship and a sense of responsibility however pet keeping has its problems as well. Keeping a pet healthy and properly fed can be expensive therefore it brings a financial burden on its owner. Pets also need constant care and attention which can be detrimental if you spend many hours away from them or want to go on holidays. You are more likely to outlive your pet as well so you will have to deal with grief when the die.
Q4: Is keeping pets becoming more popular?
I think pet keeping has become more popular in my country. Many of my friends and neighbors have pets, mainly cats and dogs however some do also have exotic animals like birds and reptiles. I find the more exotic animals very interesting and educational as I will research their habitat and requirements. Myself, I love animals and fondly remember my family dog who was a constant companion and my protector.
Let’s talk more about products
Q1: What kinds of products are most popular in your country?
Based on popularity, in the agricultural area, rice is a major product in China, and being a staple it is served with almost every meal. Almost everyone has technology at home or in hand including computers and smart phones. China is noted for its technology and domestic consumption and exports include computer parts and systems In addition to smart phones. Other popular items in China would be western products like fashion and food.
Q2: What kinds of products do young people think are useful but old people may not?
Young people embrace the newest technology in computers and smartphones. Older people would not necessarily desire them as they limit most of their communication with phone calls and texts therefore older phones would be suitable. In China western influences have fashion entertainment and technologies that younger people will purchase whereas the older population word not demand as much and save their money.
Q3: Are people, in your country, buying more products than in the past?
As we have become more affluent we purchase and consume more products, especially luxury and imported items. For example when new technology is available frequently old technology is abandoned. We live in a consume and dispose society where many items could be repaired or gifted to others less fortunate. Statistically, we import much more products from abroad then we did years ago.
Q4: What problems is consumerism causing nowadays?
Consumerism has put a great deal of stress on our environment, land and water resources. Industrial waste and development has left many oceans areas depleted of fish and has encroached on the wildlife habitat. With increased industrialization, to meet consumer demands, pollution has become critical in cities and industrial areas affecting people’s health and comfort.
Let’s talk more about jobs
Q1: What kind of jobs do young people like doing in your country?
There are many different types of jobs that young people enjoy based on their education and experience. Many students major in computer science technology and would prefer a job as an IT or computer specialist. Some other popular professions are in the health industry where students have been trained to be nurses, doctors and health professionals. Other popular professions would be in business as managers, supervisors, and marketing executives.
Q2: Do people in your country prefer physical work or mental work?
I think most young people would prefer to work with their minds rather than their bodies. Office and managerial positions would be most suitable for many graduates. Some people, however, did not have the desire to spend years in University and would prefer to start work earn a living. Although there are exceptions most of those jobs more labour-intensive.
Q3: What factors should people take into consideration when choosing jobs?
When choosing a job people should take into consideration how much education, time and effort the prerequisites require to qualify for an occupation. The big factor I believe people should consider is will they enjoy and excel at the profession they are choosing. It is difficult to be effective and motivated in an environment or job you dislike. Income and experience would also factor in choosing an occupation.
Q4: Do people in your country like to work in other countries?
Many Chinese people need to work in the cities where commuting ps difficult and hours of work are long. Additionally cities are very congested and have high levels of pollution which can be detrimental to a person’s health. I know many Chinese people that are working very hard on their English skills to be accepted at a foreign University or obtain employment overseas. They are looking forward to shorter working hours better pay and an opportunity send money home to their families.
Let’s talk more about companies
Q1: What types of companies are most common in your country?
There are many popular businesses where I live. In the cities the service industry has created many entertainment businesses serving a large population such as clubs, drinking establishments, restaurants and entertainment venues. Also many service businesses are clinics, salons, fitness centers and retail stores. Serving the many tourists that visit provides popular business opportunities which include transportation and tour guiding for example.
Q2: What are the important factors in making a company successful?
Successful businesses identify and fulfill the demand for a product or service that they are providing. They will also provide a desirable work environment with competitive wages to attract qualified and competent employees. Successful businesses will also have good managers and supervisors to motivate employees.
Q3: What kinds of qualities should a successful businessman have?
There are many qualities a businessman should have. Communication is probably the most important attribute for a businessman to have to work effectively with colleagues and staff and he should be receptive to feedback and suggestions. Next, I would say time management is a very important to complete required duties and transactions without procrastinating. Lastly, an effective businessman should be a leader, leading by example and be willing pitch in and help others.
Q4: What kinds of new businesses are emerging in your country?
There are several new business trends that are emerging. I believe more focus will be on Internet purchasing and marketing of hard goods and services. I also see, as technology is becoming more sophisticated, development in artificial intelligence and robotics will become more prevalent. Other rising business opportunities are health and fitness related because the population has become more informed and desires to develop a healthy lifestyle.
Let’s talk more about homes
Q1: Do people in your country prefer to live in a house or an apartment?
Which accommodation or home people in my country would prefer to live in would be dependent on if they are in a rural or urban area and what financial resources they have to purchase it. I believe most people living in smaller communities would prefer to have a free standing house with some land to grow flowers and vegetables. For city residences, their home would likely be apartments or townhouses with easy maintenance close to where they work.
Q2: Is the cost of housing rising in your country?
Relative to people’s income, housing and accommodation prices have risen considerably in the last couple of decades. In the past a couple could afford to finance and purchase a modest home whereas today people need to save and perhaps borrow from family to purchase the same or similar property. Apartments and condos are more affordable especially in high density areas within cities.
Q3: Why do many people like to live in cities?
Despite the drawbacks of living in a large city which would include pollution, crowding and higher expenses, many people prefer to live in the cities. Some are required for educational and working opportunities and some people prefer the big cities as they can provide shopping opportunities, entertainment venues, restaurants and interesting places to visit and hang out.
Q4: Do you think living in the countryside will be more popular in the future?
I believe people’s desires to live in the countryside are prevalent now and will increase in the future. The main deterrents from living within city are cost, pollution, congestion and noise which makes country living more attractive. Other features of country living such include parks and green spaces which are an incentive to live in rural areas. I believe also that business, such as research and technology development will recognize that there are many advantages to locating their businesses in less expensive and desirable areas.
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Let’s talk about traditions:
Do you think it is important to protect traditions?
Well yes I do because each and every country has its own traditions, and it is these traditions that distinguish one country from another. As a matter of fact, traditions not only represent the people of a nation but they also reflect that nation’s history as well. Therefore, I believe that if governments wish to promote patriotism and national pride, it’s essential that customs are continually practised and adapted, so that they suit modern society better yet remain relevant to the life of people.
What do you think is the most important tradition in your country?
I suppose one of the most important traditions is showing other people, especially the elderly, respect by adding specific words into our speech and behaving in an appropriate way. While some Westerners may see this as unnecessary and rather awkward, it is a way of being polite and avoiding giving unintended offense for people in my country. In addition to this, there are other important traditions, such as exchanging red envelopes on New Year or eating mooncakes during the Mid-autumn festival.
What kinds of traditions have disappeared in your country?
As society develops, some traditions have been done away with. For example, people used to dye their teeth black in the past, but not in modern days anymore. This is probably because of the difference in beauty standards now and then. While it was once considered elegant to have black teeth, which entails having to dye them several times to make them look smooth and shiny, these days, white and even teeth are what people yearn for.
Why should children learn about traditions?
In my opinion, if children are informed about the traditions of their country, they’ll feel stronger love and responsibility for the culture of their country. Moreover, it is young children who will eventually be responsible for preserving traditions and passing them down to future generations. If the young aren’t properly educated about traditional customs, those customs will most likely disappear in the future.
What can governments do to protect traditions?
Well, I think there are several measures that governments can take. One way is to maintain the celebration of traditional festivals and encourage people to take an active part in them. It’s important to make sure that these festivals are not only celebrated among local citizens but also known nationwide which, with the help of social media, can now easily be done. Governments, especially those of developing countries, need also to limit the impacts of globalisation on their culture to prevent traditional customs from being replaced by foreign ones.
Let’s talk about good news
How do people share good news?
Good news is meant to be spread wide and far. Accordingly, everyone does that, especially with their beloved ones first. However, the way in which they share it may vary from person to person and depend on what kind of news it is. One of the fastest one to disseminate information, or in this case, good news these days is via social media, the internet-based platform that has transformed the way in which people communicate. Facebook, Twitter or Instagram are widely used for this kind of purpose.
– disseminate: to spread information, knowledge, etc. so that it reaches many people
How does modern technology affect the delivery of information?
Technology basically affects everything we come across in this modern world and the advance of artificial intelligence somehow arises some concerns, too. However, its advantages seem to outweigh its drawback, especially regarding how information is being delivered. Prior to the advent of smartphones or portable tablets, people used to rely mostly on newspaper or printed materials to get updated with all the latest events around the world. But that’s ancient history. Now, you have 24/7 access to all kinds of
information you want with only a click, not only news but academic knowledge provided by different kinds of online courses and apps. How convenient!
– artificial intelligence: an area of study concerned with making computers copy intelligent human behavior
– outweigh: to be greater or more important than something
What kinds of good news have you received before?
Well, to be honest, good news is just good news no matter what kind it is, at least to me. Through my 20-something years of existence, the majority of good news I received were those related to my studying. Not that I meant to brag but truth to be told, I was excel at school and had always been in the group of students with best performance. In other words, I was a nerd. Therefore, more often than not, I was chosen to represent my class or school to compete in many contests for students in subjects like literature, English or biology. Together with other teammates, we brought home quite a few prestigious prizes that made our families, teachers and friends extremely proud.
– represent: to act or speak officially for somebody and defend their interests
Let’s talk about money
What can parents do to teach children to save money?
Children are quick learners and can be easily affected by others’ behaviors. Therefore, it’s both a simple and challenging task at the same time to teach them anything, including how to efficiently manage their budget. Since we all learn through imitating and replication, the most practical way is to set a good example and be open to
conversation. For instance, parents shouldn’t overspend if they want their children to learn how to save money. An occasional exception like Christmas can be accepted, but other than that, no. Parents can even talk to them about financial management and do not underestimate your kids since they may understand more than we believe they can.
Why do young people tend to waste money?
First of all, because they are young. Youngsters nowadays usually justify their financial issues with the YOLO philosophy which means “you only live once”. Since life is too short and aint nobody got time to waste, they tend to spend much more than they can earn, buying unnecessary things they barely afford to enjoy the best out of life. Secondly, that is not even their money, but their parents’. Therefore, they don’t value the effort behind those bills and keep throwing them out of the window as long as it suits them.
What kinds of things do people like to buy in your country?
I can’t tell for sure what the overall consumer behavior is like, but one thing everyone can notice is that just like most of other nationalities people is obsessed with high-tech devices, especially smartphones and tablets. The sales volume of such digital gadgets has significantly increased over the past few years, together with the proliferations of mobile stores. From my experience and observation, Apple’s products are in high demand among the middle-class, which can be proven by the moment you step into any coffee shops in Madrid City where iPhones and MacBooks are of various types and colors.
Do schools teach anything about financial management?
Unfortunately, I have to say no, or at least it is what I know. Only after students attend university, are they going to be introduced to finance and anything related. That is if they go to schools of economics, other than, I can’t guarantee, which is actually a sad truth. Since financial management is so important in how youngsters will shape their mind and prepare for the future, such subject should be taught at high schools as one of
the most essential skills that allow students to deal with any issue related to money at the early age.
Why is it necessary to teach teenagers to manage money?
There are many topics to cover when it comes to financial management, I suppose. However, for students, I believe teaching them about the labor value, financial stability and independence is more crucial. Teenagers maybe a little young to understand how hard their parents have to work to afford the whole family but it would help if we let them do some voluntary or part-time jobs for them to have a closer look of where money comes from. From there, they would learn how not to overspend and take any amount of money for granted.
How do parents give pocket money in your country?
Frankly speaking, it heavily depends on each family and their lifestyles. Some parents grant their children a specific amount of allowance daily or weekly which they can spend on snacks or necessary learning materials and stationery when needed. Others may not give at all since their kids already are fully provided with lunch boxes and everything else.
let’s talk more about personalities
What kinds of characteristics are common in modern society?
People in modern world tend to have bigger vision, curiosity and ambition than those of the earlier days. Youngsters no longer limit themselves in four walls but reaching out to explore the world with endless energy and passion. With constant effort and firm determination, we are now experiencing considerable changes resulted from thousands of innovations and disruptions every second, which leads us to where we are now. If it hadn’t been for those remarkable traits, we wouldn’t have ever gone this far.
What qualities should a good teacher have?
If you ask me, inspiring and tolerate are the most desirable characteristics I find in any teachers. There is nothing more encouraging and motivational than having a teacher who constantly stimulates and challenges students by providing two-way conversations and conveying meaningful messages through his or her lectures. As we all know, teenagers are troublemakers; therefore, the one who can overlook the impulsive acts and guide them back on track with pure compassion will definitely win them over.
Do you think parents’ personalities can affect their children’s personalities?
There is no doubt parents’ characteristics can have profound influences on their children’s development, particularly in their formative years of childhood. What they say and how they do things will probably be duplicated by their kids without their acknowledgement. If parents are caring, supportive and tolerate, their children may consider them their peers and be open with them about their hopes and concerns. Since love and care are what the kids know, they will treat others with the same manners. On the contrary, if children are neglected or inappropriately treated at home, they couldn’t care less about what happens to others.
Would you like to develop a specific personality in the future?
Nobody is perfect and neither am I. There are many things I need to work on to improve myself, personally and professionally, one of which I would like to deal with most is my procrastination. I have a tendency to put everything off and wait until I have an urge or enough motivation to kick start myself, which has proven to be extremely dangerous sometimes. Once I almost missed a deadline of my final thesis for graduation just because of my laziness and, of course, procrastination. They say old habits die hard, especially the bad one, but I’ll try my best to get rid of that unhealthy style of working.
let’s talk more about living with others
Why do some young people dislike living with old people?
The most common reason might be a large generation gap between youngsters and their senior citizen in terms of mindsets and living style. To be more precise, young people are more open-minded and always up for adventures in comparison to the elder. They live bolder, act more impulsively and refuse to settle for anything less than freedom and
big dream while their grandparents are more careful in every decision and take into account possible consequences before making any move. Hence, when living together, they can hardly reach any mutual consent in any aspect. However, there are also exceptions where 2 or 3 generations living in harmony under the same roof.
What are the advantages of living with old people?
Old people are like living dictionaries packed with endless stories about lifetime experience and wide bread of knowledge. Though born and raised in different social context, they can always provide youngsters with practical pieces of advice and be a valuable reference sources whenever we are in need. For example, if you get bored with all the facts and dates listed in history books, which are highly informative, yet, tedious, turn to your grandparents and get ready to be inspired by their personal insights and
authentic experience. No one knows the stories better than those who have been through it.
Should young adults live on their own?
In my opinion, adolescences who have reached their maturity should live apart from their families to be more emotionally and financially independent. This kind of practice is more common in European and American countries compared to their Asian counterparts, which can be explained by traditional lifestyles and mindsets. However, the number of Asian youngsters moving out of their parents’ houses are growing substantially since living on their own not only force them to be more responsible with their lives from washing their own dishes to ironing their clothes, but also offer them certain freedom to pursue what they want.
let’s talk more about shopping
What types of shops would you recommend a visitor to your country should go to?
If travelers ever want to have an authentic and unforgettable experience during their journey, I would highly recommend they pay a visit to traditional markets or food stands on the street to have a taste of true street foods, which are not only diverse in types and flavors, but also signature features of cuisine. Street vendors will also offer visitors a wide range of delicious dishes and true dining experience.
What do you think are the advantages of buying things on the internet?
Online shopping has prevailing in a past few years for reasons. First and foremost, buying online is incredibly time-saving. Well, obviously, time is considered the most precious asset that everyone has but many have taken for granted. Instead of spending hours driving to your favorite malls to get some new clothes of the latest collection, your problem can be solved with only Internet connections and, of course, your fine taste in fashion. No energy is needed, either.
Are there any disadvantages (or dangers) of buying on the internet? (What?)
Every cloud has a silver lightning. Online shopping, in particular and e-commerce in general are true advancement in modern world, however, their drawbacks couldn’t be overlooked. It is widely known that there is no such thing as 100% nowadays, cyber security included. No less than once or twice have I heard about users’ information has been leaked, which can cause serious trouble to customers who are using that company’s products or services. Another concern should also be taken into account is overspending due to constant exposure to products of preference.
In your country, how has shopping changed in the past few decades?
Just like any other parts of the world, Singapore has experienced dramatic changes in customers’ behavior when it comes to shopping. One of the striking features of shopping habits these days is people tend to buy things online and get them delivered to their houses, regardless what kinds of items. It could be pizzas, clothing or kitchen appliances.
Do you think people spend too much time (or money) on shopping? (Why?/Why not?)
I can’t tell for sure because the amount of time spent on shopping varies among different people. Nevertheless, thanks to the advent of Internet and online shopping, that amount might be relatively less than it used to be. Besides, people seem to be busier and their schedules get tighter with much more important tasks other than shopping itself. Therefore, I don’t think shopping is people’s priority or anything more than a necessary deed to get on with life.
What kinds of people spend an excessive amount of time or money on shopping?
There is no doubt that people who spend an excessive amount of time or money on shopping are those with purchasing power and time to spare. In other words, they are of high-income class and love to pamper themselves with qualified products and premium services. They, regardless of gender, are people with fine taste and know what they want. They can sacrifice hours just to choose a dress or suit, which can cost a fortune just to attend an opening party.
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