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For questions 1-8, read the text and choose the correct answer for each gap. Click on a gap and a choice of words will appear. Then choose the correct answer.
- Hand-Made Gifts
Choosing gifts for loved ones is sometimes tricky. If you are someone who never knows what to give to friends and family, one easy is to make something yourself. Not only are hand-made gifts cheaper than store-bought presents, but they are also much more . They can be designed just as you want them, which is a further .
Photos make great presents, because just about everyone enjoys looking at pictures. In this age of digital photography, few people print pictures and place them in albums. Thus, one idea for a gift could be to print a of images and them in a notebook. Another idea is to make custom jewellery. Your local store is likely to have coloured threads and beads, which you can use to make bracelets or necklaces.
Many people like the idea of personalised presents, but aren't sure what to create. If you need , there are many websites you can out on the Internet. Some of these cost money, but most of them are free.
Read the text. Think of the word which best fits each gap. Write the correct word in each gap (9 – 16).
- Plants for the Office
If you are looking for an easy way to brighten up your workplace, you might want to think about buying some plants. Plants have many benefits. They clean the air we breathe by absorbing carbon dioxide. They can also rid of harmful chemicals, such as found in cleaning products. that many offices lack ventilation, this is an important point.
In addition to their effect on our physical health, it has been proven that plants can improve our mental state. More than one study has confirmed that, companies with plants, workers experience less tension and anxiety. These businesses report lower absence rates, is also good for productivity.
It seems that plants can even boost creativity. This be because the colour green helps people to focus. Creativity is tough to define, and is much harder to measure. However, researchers on both sides of the Atlantic agree that plants people more innovative. Plants are inexpensive and easy to care . If your office doesn't have any, you should consider installing some.
Read the text. For questions 17 – 24, use the word on the right to form a word that fits in the gap. For each question, write your answer in the gap.
Why not watch a cooking show? Keyword List Preparing home-cooked meals makes many people feel nervous. If you want to improve your skills in the kitchen, watching a cooking programme could be a good option for you. The of such shows has grown a lot in recent years, and these days there are many types of programmes to see. Some focus on a specific kind of food, such as dishes or seafood. Others are more general, and can teach you to prepare a range of tasty dishes.
One advantage of these shows is that the give detailed . This means that, most , you will not make mistakes when you try out the recipes at home. Another bonus is the fact that the chefs tend to be . You won't be bored while watching them, that's for sure!
Cooking programmes allow you to benefit from the of skilled professionals. The chance to learn from experts is , and will give you the confidence you need to prepare food for friends and loved ones.
For questions 25 – 30, complete the second sentence so that it has a similar meaning to the first sentence, using the word given. Do not change the word given. You must use between two and five words, including the word given.
- 25 People say that his house is haunted.
His house haunted.
26 You really shouldn’t have brought me the flowers.
It really was me the flowers.
27 Rita said that I had stolen her purse.
Rita her purse.
28 I didn’t reply to her email immediately.
I to her email.
29 She didn’t sleep well because of all the noise.
The noise well.
30 I spent ages finding the right colour paint.
It the right colour paint.
You are going to read a news article about an organisation that helps people learn languages. For each question 31 – 36, choose the correct answer.
The origins of Durham's biggest language exchange
In the modern world, foreign languages are more important than ever. Even speaking just one other language opens up a whole new realm of career possibilities, to say nothing of knowing two or three. Foreign languages improve your confidence, can help you to make friends, and make it easier to travel. As if that weren't enough, a body of recent scientific research argues that there are even medical advantages to foreign language study. Improved memory and focus are just a couple of the perks you can enjoy as a result of this pursuit.
Despite these benefits, one pressing concern remains. Foreign language acquisition can be one of the most arduous journeys a person might embark on; especially if total mastery is the end goal. It's no wonder that learners become discouraged and, not infrequently, give up completely. What is the best way to improve your language skills? Is it possible to promote language learning in a fun and easy manner? Five years ago, Sunita Mishra pondered these questions. After giving the matter some thought, she had the idea to found a language exchange.
A language exchange is a gathering where people get together with the goal of practising languages. These groups tend to attract young people and international students, although older participants and locals often attend too. There are many different types of language exchanges. Some are tightly structured: an organiser may, for example, ring a bell when it is time to change from one language to another. Others are more informal, and participants can move about freely and join different conversations.
Durham, where Mishra grew up, is famous for its university. Most students who attend the school are British. However, there are also several thousand international students in the city, hailing from more than 150 countries. Mishra envisioned meetings that would cater to this group. "The setting provides a unique opportunity," Mishra explains. "I felt sure that if I planned interesting events where people could meet and talk, that there would be demand." This instinct proved correct. Mishra's organisation, called "Let's Talk", has succeeded.
Mishra's first-ever exchange was held in a pizzeria. She thought that the red chequered tablecloths and soft lighting would create a good atmosphere. And it goes without saying that everyone loves pizza. To publicise the event, Mishra hung fliers around the city. She also bought a set of small flags that people could carry around, so that it would be clear which languages they spoke. To her complete astonishment, more than thirty people showed up. "We didn't have enough chairs!" Mishra recalls. European languages such as Italian, Portuguese and Greek were spoken, as well as Japanese.
Since then, Mishra has built up a strong membership base. "Let's Talk" has more than four hundred active members and is continuing to grow. The group now stages meetings five nights a week in a variety of venues around Durham. Some events are relaxed, whereas others have a festive atmosphere and include quizzes or games. One very popular gathering is the monthly banquet, where people share traditional dishes from their countries. Mishra estimates that up to thirty languages are spoken at her busiest meetings. She herself speaks four languages fluently, and has set her sights on learning a fifth.
"Let's Talk" recently launched a new project, a hiking club. Once a month, Mishra charters a coach and arranges a day trip to a different spot in Durham's scenic countryside. As always, the emphasis is on language learning. Mishra has other ideas in the pipeline, too. Film nights, museum outings and an overnight trip to London are a just a few. "You need languages for everything," Mishra points out. "That means there are an infinite number of ways for people to practise." If you are interested in taking part in an event hosted by "Let's Talk", check out their webpage or Facebook group. And if you haven't got a friend to come with, don't worry. There's no better way to meet people, no matter what language you speak.
31. What is the meaning of "pursuit" in paragraph 1?
32. According to paragraph 2, what challenge are language learners faced with?
33. Why did Mishra decide to set up "Let's Talk"?
34. Which sentence best describes the initial gathering that Mishra organised?
35. What does paragraph 7 suggest about the future of "Let's Talk"?
36. Which option is NOT included as an example of an activity carried out by "Let's Talk"?
You are going to read a story about someone who moves to New York City. Six sentences have been removed from the article. For questions 37 – 42, choose the correct sentence and move it into the gap. There is one extra sentence which you do not need to use.
Becoming a New Yorker
Whether or not you've travelled to New York, you likely have an idea of it in your mind. Maybe it's because of the many films that have been set there, or because of the songs you've heard that evoke the city. Thanks to the artists and writers that have flocked to New York for generations, few places have been as oft depicted as the Big Apple. People from around the world have come to New York with the goal of getting ahead, and the cultural melting pot that has resulted is unlike anywhere else on earth.
My first experience of New York came when I was twelve years old. My family had booked a weeklong holiday there so that my sister could visit some of the city's museums. She was doing a degree in Art History at the time, and was writing her thesis about a group of paintings that are housed at the Metropolitan. While she wandered the stretch of Fifth Avenue known as "Museum Mile", my father, mother and I took ourselves sightseeing. We snapped pictures of the famous lights in Times Square, admired the Manhattan skyline as we walked across the Brooklyn Bridge, and explored Chinatown and Little Italy. I was left entranced by New York's grandeur. It felt to me, as it has to so many others, like a place where things "happened."
Years on, I had the chance to spend a year living in New York. My company had decided to open an office in downtown Manhattan, and a junior manager like myself was needed to set up shop. When I received an email letting me know that I had been selected, I was over the moon. The next month passed in a blur as I got everything planned. Not only did I have to book flights and find a flat, but I had a lot to arrange for the new office as well. Two days before I left, my friends took me out for dinner and presented me with an "I Love New York" t-shirt. It was a memorable evening.
I can't say it was easy adjusting to life in New York, but I loved the experience all the same. When I was there as a child, I was drawn to the hustle and bustle of the urban environment. I found it exciting to navigate the crowds, for example, and enjoyed the challenge of adapting my gait to the rapid pace of the streets. As an adult, these aspects of the city sometimes produced stress. It was hard to get used to my rush hour commute. Supermarket shopping in the company of thousands of other people – literally – was also tough. In those moments, I sought out peaceful locations where I could sit back and observe New York from a distance. I became very fond of the Hudson River Park, where locals go to walk their dogs and ride bikes.
After one year of living in New York, it came time to make a choice. Should I stay, and continue to discover the metropolis? There were huge areas of the city that I'd barely set foot in, much less get to know in the way I desired. My parents and sister had been to see me, of course, but those visits were no match for the weekly meals and catch-ups I usually enjoyed in their company. In the end, my job proposed a compromise. I would be based in our London office, but would travel to New York for two months each year. Thus, my relationship with New York has been able to deepen. The city has now become a comfortable second home.
- We even went to a baseball game.
- On the other hand, it was hard living away from my family.
- Somehow or other, I managed to do it all.
- I was surprised to find that at times I felt overwhelmed.
- The Italian restaurant on my street had been in operation since 1904.
- Another factor is the idea of a New York as a place where anyone can make it.
- I typed my application over the course of one frenzied evening.
Read the reviews of the television programmes. For questions 43 – 52, choose the correct section. The sections may be chosen more than once.
New Programmes Bring History to Life
A. The Great War
The Great War is an excellent way to boost your knowledge of World War I. This informative programme was screened for the first time last Friday, and is the result of years of work by a group of graduate students at City University. Among its many virtues, the programme presents never before seen interviews with a number of leading historians. Of these, Anthony Farrell is particularly enjoyable to listen to. Farrell is regarded as an "expert among experts" in the field of European history. Still, he has a knack for explaining complex ideas in a way that just about anyone can grasp. Above all, viewers will enjoy his analysis of the role of submarines in the war. Perhaps the only drawback to the programme is the fact that it goes on a bit, mostly towards the end. The faint-hearted may not want to attempt this three-hour marathon.
B. Daring Seafarers
Before the release of David Jenkins' newest production, a group of critics cried that the last thing we needed was another film about the age of exploration. Sadly, the pessimism of these reviewers has been proven correct. Jenkins' work is not normally a let down. Earlier films, such as his famed biography series, are known for being quite riveting. Indeed, he has won a number of awards for previous work. Here, on the other hand, viewers are left wanting. The best part of the film is Jenkins' analysis of the psychology of famous explorers. Alas, this bold shot at originality falls flat. Rather than looking at this subject in depth, Jenkins skirts the topic with a series of bland statements. Should viewers wish to truly learn, they would do well to search elsewhere. One hopes that Jenkins has more success with future projects.
C. History's Greatest Painters
Most viewers will already be familiar with the Renaissance. However, even the most knowledgeable among us will benefit from watching History's Greatest Painters. After all, it is always pleasant to reflect on this dazzling period from the 14th to 17th centuries. The directors are a team of professors from five top universities. In the programme, they made the choice to focus on the era's lesser-known artists. Da Vinci and Michelangelo are mentioned, of course. Nevertheless, more attention is paid to other figures, ones who the public is likely to know less about. Remember your art history teacher from long ago? Even she would be certain to learn something new. Viewers will easily see why the show has already received a series of prizes. A further bonus is the fact that the programme is split into four parts. If you are strapped for time, you can watch the show little by little.
D. The Genius of Einstein
Have you always wished you understood the theory of relativity? Does the life of a famous scientist interest you? If you've answered yes to these questions, you simply must check out this new biopic about Albert Einstein. Produced together with the Global Physics Society, the programme will be aired for the first time next week. Be sure not to miss it, as it will only be screened this week. The show is less than two hours long, so if you have to wake up early for work, you don't need to stress about getting a late night. The programme makes excellent viewing for both scientists and non-scientists alike. If you tend to be put off by technical subjects, don't worry. The Genius of Einstein is designed such that even laymen can enjoy it. Alternately, if you do have some knowledge of physics, you will welcome the commentators' explanations of Einstein's formulas.
43. discusses an interesting subject in a superficial manner
44. is split into multiple segments
45. was produced over the course of many years
46. focuses on the life of just one individual
47. has received a number of awards
48. will not be available to viewers for very long
49. was produced by someone of prominence
50. is described as being too lengthy
51. focuses on people who are not very famous
52. was regarded negatively from the very beginning