A. Charlotte and Viktor are waiting for their exam results. Listen to Charlotte and answer questions 1-5. Then do the same for Viktor.
Charlotte has just taken her A-levels.
Viktor has just taken the FCE exam.
1 Do you think you have passed?
2 When and how will you get the results of the exam?
3 How will you celebrate if you get good results?
4 What will you do if you get good results?
5 What will you do if you fail, or if you don’t get the results you need?
B. Listen to Charlotte and Viktor. Did they pass of fail? What grade did they get? What are they going to do?
1 She is sure she has passed but is worried about her grades.
2 She gets her results tomorrow by post.
3 She doesn’t want to plan any celebrations.
4 She will go to Cambridge University.
5 She will do another year at school and take the exams again next year.
1 He thinks he has passed / he’s quite optimistic.
2 Tomorrow morning, on the notice board at the school where he studies.
3 He will have a drink with other people in his class.
4 He will carry on studying and would like to take the CAE (Cambridge Advanced English) exam next year.
5 He will do the exam again in June.
Charlotte passed but her grades weren’t as good as she hoped (As in chemistry and biology but B in physics and C in maths.).
She’s going to get in touch with Cambridge University to see if they will still accept her. If not, she will re-take her A levels.
Viktor passed with a grade B. He’s going to celebrate with his friends (champagne and then dinner).
J = Journalist, C = Charlotte
J What subjects did you take?
C Physics, chemistry, maths, and biology.
J Do you think you’ve passed?
C I’m sure I’ve passed, but I’m worried about what grades I’ll get.
C Because I want to study medicine at university – at Cambridge, and they won’t give me a place unless I get three As and a B.
J Do you think you’ll get them?
C I don’t know. I think I did OK, but I’m a bit worried about maths.
J When will you get your results?
C Tomorrow, by post. I’m really nervous – and so are my parents! As soon as the post comes, I’ll take the letter upstairs and open it.
J And how will you celebrate if you pass?
C I don’t want to plan any celebrations until I get the results.
J And what will you do if you don’t get the grades you need?
C I don’t want to think about it. If I don’t get into Cambridge, my parents will kill me. No, I’m joking. I suppose I’ll do another year at school and take the exams again.
J Well, good luck!
J = Journalist, V = Viktor
J What exam did you take?
V FCE. First Certificate in English.
J Do you think you’ve passed?
V I think so. I’m quite optimistic. I think I did the exam quite well.
J When will you get your result?
V Tomorrow morning. I study at a language school and when I go to class tomorrow, the grades will be on the notice board. My name will be the first on the list because my surname begins with A.
J How will you celebrate if you pass?
V I’ll go and have a drink with the other people in my class. Well, with the people who have passed.
J And what will you do if you pass? Will you carry on studying English?
V Yes, I’d like to take the CAE exam next year.
J And if you don’t pass?
V I’ll take the exam again in June.
J = Journalist, C = Charlotte, V = Viktor
J Charlotte – I can see from your face that the results, er, weren’t exactly what you wanted – am I right?
C Yeah. I got an A in chemistry and biology but only a B in physics and a C in maths.
J So what are you going to do now?
C Well, first I’ll get in touch with the university. Perhaps they’ll still accept me – but I don’t think they will, so… I’ll probably take my A levels again next year.
J Were your parents angry?
C No, my Mum and Dad have been really nice – they know how disappointed I am.
J Well Viktor, did you pass your FCE exam?
V Yes, I passed – and I got a B. I’m very pleased. I didn’t think I’d get a B. I thought I’d get a C.
J And your friends?
V They all passed except one. But he didn’t expect to pass – he didn’t do any work.
J So are you going out to celebrate?
V Oh yes. We’re going to have champagne in a bar and then we’re going to have dinner together.
A. Listen to a TV critic talking about the programme That’ll Teach ‘Em. And answer the questions.
1 What do you think the idea of the programme was?
2 Which of these things do you think pupils hated the most?
wearing a uniform
not being able to watch TV
going for cross-country runs
not being able to use mobiles
having cold showers
having a lot of homework
3 What do you think the discipline was like? How do you think the children were punished for behaving badly?
4 Do you think the pupils did well or badly when they took 1950s exams?
B. Listen again and mark the sentences T (true) or F (false).
1 16 children took part in the experiment.
2 They didn’t have to sleep at the school.
3 The uniforms were not very comfortable.
4 They had to stay inside the school grounds all the time.
5 The children weren’t allowed to talk during the classes.
6 They really missed being able to use computers and calculators.
7 They thought the classes were boring.
8 Exams today are easier than in the 1950s.
9 The children failed because they weren’t intelligent enough.
10 Most of the children enjoyed the experiment.
1 The idea was to compare education today with education in the 1950s.
2 The food (and the girls didn’t like the cold showers).
3 Very strict. Silence all the time. If children misbehaved, they were caned (hit on the hand with a thin wooden cane) or had to stay behind after class and do extra work.
4 They did badly. Most of the pupils failed the exams. Only one pupil passed all the 1950s exams.
1 F (30)
2 F (It was a boarding school.)
6 F (They didn’t mind.)
7 F (Most of them found the classes interesting.)
8 F (They are different, but not necessarily easier.)
9 F (They were intelligent / bright children. They failed because the exams were so different from what they were used to.)
P = Presenter, M = Michael
P Hello and welcome to our review of the week’s TV. With me today is the television critic Michael Stein… Michael, what did you think was the best programme of the week?
M Well, I’ve chosen the last programme in the Channel 4 series That’ll Teach ‘Em. I must say I found the whole series absolutely fascinating. For those of you who didn’t see it, what the programme did was to take a group of 30 16-year-old children and send them – as an experiment – to a boarding school for one month. But it wasn’t a modern boarding school, it was a 1950s boarding school. They recreated exactly the same conditions as in the 1950s – the same food, the same discipline, the same exams. The idea was to compare education today with education in the 1950s.
P I bet it was a shock for today’s schoolchildren.
M Well, it was, of course. It wasn’t just the classes – it was the whole atmosphere – I mean they had to wear the uniform from the 50s – horrible uncomfortable clothes – they hated them and they weren’t allowed to leave the school once for the whole month, or watch TV, or use mobiles. And they had to have cold showers every morning, and go for cross-country runs!
P What was the worst thing for them?
M The food, definitely! Most of them hated it. They said it was cold and tasteless. And the girls didn’t like the cold showers much either…
P What about the classes?
M Well, of course the biggest difference for the kids was the discipline. It was silence all the time during the lessons – only the teacher spoke. And anyone who misbehaved had to go to the headmaster and was either caned – hit on the hand – or had to stay behind after class and do extra work. And of course they couldn’t use computers or calculators, but curiously the kids didn’t really mind that, and in fact most of them found the lessons interesting – some of them said they were more interesting than their normal lessons. They had to work very hard though.
P So what happened in the end? Did they pass the 1950s exams?
M No. Most of them failed – although they were all really bright children. There was only one child who actually passed all the subjects.
P So, do you think that means exams really used to be harder in the 1950s?
M No, I think the kids failed because exams in the 1950s were very different. The children in the programme will probably do very well in their own exams. On the other hand, 1950s children would probably find today’s exams very difficult.
P How did the kids themselves feel about the experiment?
M They were really positive. In general they had a good time and they all felt they learned a lot. I think it made them appreciate their own lifestyle more. Some of them actually said it was the best month of their lives. It was an interesting experiment and the programme was really well made. I very much enjoyed watching it.
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- Practice English Listening B1 Exercises – Information
- Practice English Listening B1 Exercises – House and home
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