Posted in Exam Preparation Class, Uncategorized

FCE Speaking Phrases

Image credit: www.examensgirona.com

Follow me on twitter @RobbioDobbio

First post in a while as I’ve been tied up with DELTA module 1 exams. Modules 1 and 2 are done! It’s been a fantastic but extremely taxing experience.

So it’s back to the bread and butter of exam prep classes and two long-standing private students have their FCE next week, so I’ve made this handy FCE speaking phrase sheet. Download it below:

FCE Speaking phrases

FCE Speaking Phrases

Likes/dislikes

I’m into…

I’m a keen/avid (surfer)

I’m keen on/fond of (surfing)

I’m a fan of…

Opinion

In my opinion…

I think/reckon…

From my point of view…

 

Comparing/contrasting

Both pictures show…

In this picture we can see… whereas/while in the other picture…

In contrast

On the other hand

Describing pictures

He/she/they seem to be…

He/she is probably…

In this picture it looks as if/though they are…

They could/might/may be…

They could/might/may have just…

In the background there is/are…

At the top/bottom…

In the corner…

Agreeing

You’re absolutely right.

I feel the same.

I couldn’t agree more.

I think so too.

Absolutely/totally.

Disagreeing

I don’t think so…

I take your point but…

Hhhmmm, I’m not so sure…

I see what you mean but…

Starting

Shall I start?

Shall we start with….?

Would you like to start?

Do you mind if I start?

That’s a difficult/interesting question.

Now let me see…

Asking for opinion

What’s your opinion on….?

What do you think about….?

How do you feel about…?

Would you agree with that?

Personalising

Speaking from personal experience,…

For me personally,..

I’d prefer to be in this situation because….

 

Impressive structures

Another point I’d like to add about … is…

Coming back to what… was saying about…

It’s also important to remember that…

Another idea which has just occurred to me is…

Repairing and Rescuing

I can’t remember the word at the moment but…

It’s the thing you use to…

The person who…

I have the word on the tip of my tongue.

The word has slipped my mind.

What I’m trying to say is…

What I mean is…

Asking for repetition

I beg your pardon, I didn’t catch that.

Sorry would you mind repeating that?

Could you repeat the question please?

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Posted in Exam Preparation Class, Vocabulary Classes

CAE Word Formation Practice

Follow me on twitter @RobbioDobbio

Here’s a worksheet for CAE students to help them prepare for part 3 of the use of English paper. Download the worksheet and key below, I found the exercises on quizlet so full credit to evatrn for making the set. Use the quizlet set below to revise.

Word Formation Practice

Word Formation Key

Quizlet Word Formation set

Worksheet

  1. Remember to _______ patients twice daily at 8.00am and 8.00pm. WEIGHT
  2. Why do you always want to go with those ignorant ___ people? WORTH
  3. This is the most interesting ___ I’ve ever seen. PERFORM
  4. Are you ___ of sailing in the prevailing conditions? ABLE
  5. Such an act would have been deceitful and ___ . RESPONSIBILITY
  6. There is already enough ___ without that, you know. PRESS
  7. You’d ___ too many people off with that speech. FRIGHT
  8. We must experience ___, pain, and death because we are alive. ANXIOUS
  9. I feel ___ about including the last sentence. HESITATE
  10. Now surely our ___ government must go. CREDIT
  11. The handshake is a basic gesture of ___ .FRIEND
  12. They fell into a ___ sleep which lasted until they were rediscovered in 1878. MIRACLE
  13. I’ve had a very sheltered ___, so this has really been an eye-opener. BRING
  14. The music was ___ loud, you couldn’t hear yourself think. BELIEVE
  15. Silk is always wonderful too, even if it’s totally ___ . PRACTICE
  16. People are being ________ into parting with their money. LEAD
  17. The government stopped funding ______ industries. PROFIT
  18. It’s normal for there to be _______ between brothers and sisters. COMPETE
  19. Walking the dog is ideal exercise for anyone and the fresh air will be ___ too. BENEFIT
  20. Her face was blotched and ___ with crying. SWELL
  21. There is a growing ______ that she will resign. BELIEVE
  22. It should come as no surprise that cycling builds leg ___ . STRONG
  23. He helped his underage son _______ his birth date to illegally obtain a driver’s license. FALSE
  24. All ___ must be over 18. APPLY
  25. It’s an ___ and dangerous policy. LOGIC
  26. As he was watching them, his eyes began to ___ in astonishment. WIDE
  27. Doctors have developed a new, modern ___ technique involving ultra-sound. PAIN
  28. There is a feeling of isolation and professional ___ in schools. SECURE
  29. Many candidates showed little ___ of the problems from the headhunter’s point of view. APPRECIATE
  30. Do these goods comply with our safety _________? REQUIRE
  31. We were unable to establish_______ of her innocence. PROVE
  32. An attempt is also being made to ___ textures and symbols where possible. STANDARD
  33. He took to it like the ___ fish to water. PROVERB
  34. In all ___________ the vase was made in the seventeenth century.LIKELY
  35. He’s definitely someone very nervy, very jumpy and basically___ . SECURITY
  36. ‘I regret, I cannot offer any ___, Madame’ he said with a smile. REFRESH
  37. He’s like a politician who wants to convince you of his _____. SINCERE
  38. There’s no damage done, there’s no ___ . THIEF
  39. But the level of social welfare was so high that poverty was ___ . THINK
  40. The first thing he discovered was that Newley had not died ___ . ACCIDENT
  41. The whole method is a form of ___ . SIMPLE
  42. But are we allowing ourselves to be carried away by false ___? VAIN
  43. Moments before there was a ___ with a car. COLLIDE
  44. It was not, he admits, the wisest ___ for a beginner. CHOOSE
  45. You can hold the snake: it’s _____. HARM
  46. The government is noted for its ___________ drugs policy. COMPROMISE
  47. He admired the ___ of relationships he saw around him. WARM
  48. We have caused enough harm by our ___, irresponsible, selfish behaviour. THINK
  49. But not all ___ are valid in reference to pedagogy. IMPLY
  50. And he accepts that he set out on the lonely road to ___ too early in life. STAR
  51. Critics say he has been weak and _______ . DECIDE
  52. He tried to look ___, but it didn’t work. APOLOGY
  53. The country will _______ currency controls to encourage spending abroad. LOOSE
  54. For some _______ reason, she chose that moment to break the news. EXPLAIN
  55. We spend $5 million a year on _________. ADVERTISEMENT
  56. Which women do you ___ about? FANTASY
  57. Every time the pictorial elements were similar, if not almost ___ . IDENTITY
  58. All this she heard, even understood, but still she was ___ . SPEAK
  59. The jury found the doctor criminally _______. NEGLECT
  60. She’s made an official ___ .COMPLAIN
  61. The economies of Western Europe and Japan experienced ___ growth. PRECEDE
  62. The system is liable to suffer from ___ of the type discussed above. ACCURATE
  63. It was a ___ room with a deep bay window overlooking the river. SPACE
  64. In that case, young lady, you would have my undying ___ . GRATEFUL
  65. It was very __________ of you. Thank you. CONSIDER
  66. It would be much more ___ for you to marry a woman with money. SENSE
  67. The tension in the room seemed ___ . ENDURE
  68. Winners will be _______as soon as possible. NOTE
  69. The evidence from ___ times can seldom be interpreted with any certainty. HISTORY
  70. ‘Play’ and ‘game’ are used ____- it does not matter which. CHANGE

Key

  1. weigh Remember to _______ patients twice daily at 8.00am and 8.00pm. WEIGHT
  2. worthless Why do you always want to go with those ignorant ___ people? WORTH
  3. performance This is the most interesting ___ I’ve ever seen. PERFORM
  4. capable Are you ___ of sailing in the prevailing conditions? ABLE
  5. irresponsible Such an act would have been deceitful and ___ . RESPONSIBILITY
  6. pressure There is already enough ___ without that, you know. PRESS
  7. frighten You’d ___ too many people off with that speech. FRIGHT
  8. anxiety We must experience ___, pain, and death because we are alive. ANXIOUS
  9. hesitant I feel ___ about including the last sentence. HESITATE
  10. discredited Now surely our ___ government must go. CREDIT
  11. friendship The handshake is a basic gesture of ___ .FRIEND
  12. miraculous They fell into a ___ sleep which lasted until they were rediscovered in 1878. MIRACLE
  13. upbringing I’ve had a very sheltered ___, so this has really been an eye-opener. BRING
  14. unbelievably The music was ___ loud, you couldn’t hear yourself think. BELIEVE
  15. impractical Silk is always wonderful too, even if it’s totally ___ . PRACTICE
  16. misled People are being ________ into parting with their money. LEAD
  17. unprofitable The government stopped funding ______ industries. PROFIT
  18. competition It’s normal for there to be _______ between brothers and sisters. COMPETE
  19. beneficial Walking the dog is ideal exercise for anyone and the fresh air will be ___ too. BENEFIT
  20. swollen Her face was blotched and ___ with crying. SWELL
  21. belief There is a growing ______ that she will resign. BELIEVE
  22. strength It should come as no surprise that cycling builds leg ___ . STRONG
  23. falsify He helped his underage son _______ his birth date to illegally obtain a driver’s license.FALSE
  24. applicants All ___ must be over 18. APPLY
  25. illogical It’s an ___ and dangerous policy. LOGIC
  26. widen As he was watching them, his eyes began to ___ in astonishment. WIDE
  27. painless Doctors have developed a new, modern ___ technique involving ultra-sound. PAIN
  28. insecurity There is a feeling of isolation and professional ___ in schools. SECURE
  29. appreciation Many candidates showed little ___ of the problems from the headhunter’s point of view. APPRECIATE
  30. requirement Do these goods comply with our safety _________? REQUIRE
  31. proof We were unable to establish_______ of her innocence. PROVE
  32. standardise An attempt is also being made to ___ textures and symbols where possible. STANDARD
  33. proverbial He took to it like the ___ fish to water. PROVERB
  34. likelihood In all ___________ the vase was made in the seventeenth century.LIKELY
  35. insecure He’s definitely someone very nervy, very jumpy and basically___ . SECURITY
  36. refreshment ‘I regret, I cannot offer any ___, Madame’ he said with a smile. REFRESH
  37. sincerity He’s like a politician who wants to convince you of his _____. SINCERE
  38. theft There’s no damage done, there’s no ___ . THIEF
  39. unthinkable But the level of social welfare was so high that poverty was ___ . THINK
  40. accidentally The first thing he discovered was that Newley had not died ___ . ACCIDENT
  41. simplification The whole method is a form of ___ . SIMPLE
  42. vanity But are we allowing ourselves to be carried away by false ___? VAIN
  43. collision Moments before there was a ___ with a car. COLLIDE
  44. CHOICE It was not, he admits, the wisest ___ for a beginner. CHOOSE
  45. harmless You can hold the snake: it’s harmless. HARM
  46. uncompromising The government is noted for its ___________ drugs policy.. COMPROMISE
  47. warmth He admired the ___ of relationships he saw around him. WARM
  48. thoughtless We have caused enough harm by our ___, irresponsible, selfish behaviour. THINK
  49. implications But not all ___ are valid in reference to pedagogy. IMPLY
  50. stardom And he accepts that he set out on the lonely road to ___ too early in life. STAR
  51. indecisive Critics say he has been weak and _______ . DECIDE
  52. apologetic He tried to look ___, but it didn’t work. APOLOGY
  53. loosen The country will _______ currency controls to encourage spending abroad.  LOOSE
  54. inexplicable For some _______ reason, she chose that moment to break the news. EXPLAIN
  55. advertising We spend $5 million a year on _________. ADVERTISEMENT
  56. fantasize Which women do you ___ about?FANTASY
  57. identical Every time the pictorial elements were similar, if not almost ___ . IDENTITY
  58. speechless All this she heard, even understood, but still she was ___ . SPEAK
  59. negligent The jury found the doctor criminally _______. NEGLECT
  60. complaint She’s made an official ___ .COMPLAIN
  61. unprecedented The economies of Western Europe and Japan experienced ___ growth. PRECEDE
  62. inaccuracies The system is liable to suffer from ___ of the type discussed above. ACCURATE
  63. spacious It was a ___ room with a deep bay window overlooking the river. SPACE
  64. gratitude In that case, young lady, you would have my undying ___ . GRATEFUL
  65. considerate It was very __________ of you. Thank you. CONSIDER
  66. sensible It would be much more ___ for you to marry a woman with money. SENSE
  67. unendurable The tension in the room seemed ___ . ENDURE
  68. notified Winners will be _______as soon as possible. NOTE
  69. prehistoric The evidence from ___ times can seldom be interpreted with any certainty. HISTORY
  70. interchangeably ‘Play’ and ‘game’ are used ____- it does not matter which. CHANGE
Posted in Listening Classes

CAE Listening Exam Technique

Follow me on twitter @RobbioDobbio

This is a handout to help students tackle the four parts of the CAE listening paper. You can download it below. Do you have any other tips?

CAE Listening Technique

Part 1 – Short conversations – Multiple Choice

  • 3 short extracts. Short conversations between two people.
  • 2 questions per extract. 6 marks in total
  • Time in between extracts to read next two questions.
  • Read questions 1+2 – underline key words
  • Listen to extract 1 twice
  • Move onto questions 3+4 etc.

Part 2 – Sentence Completion

  • Sentence completion – complete sentence with word or short phrase
  • 8 questions, 8 marks
  • 45 seconds to read task – underline key words and make predictions about type of word (adjective, noun, verb) and possibilities (number? animal? place?)
  • Listen for first time – be careful for distractors:

Identify the distractors in this question:

Sentence: The subject Steven was teaching when he first read about the bath toys was ____________________.

Listening text: “So how did I get involved? I’m a college lecturer but not teaching anything like economics or even geography; media studies is my field.”

  • Confirm answer on second listening.
  • Numbers can be like this: 36 or like this: thirty-six
  • Check that word or phrase makes sense in the context of the sentence, Should it be plural? Does it need an article? (a/an/the)

Part 3 – Long Interview – Multiple Choice

  • 6 questions multiple choice
  • 6 marks in total
  • 70 seconds to read the task – 10 seconds per question, underline key words in questions and options, focus on phrases like “biggest benefit” or “most important.”
  • First listen try to answer each question or at least cross out any that aren’t possible
  • Confirm on second listen.

Part 4 – Two Task Matching

  • 5 extracts about same topic – short monologues.
  • Two tasks at same time – 10 marks in total.
  • 45 seconds to read task – first thing: underline the information for each task: reason why they did the course, consequences/benefits of doing the course.
  • Read options and attempt to memorise
  • Try to complete both tasks at the same time.
Posted in Exam Preparation Class

CAE Use of English Training

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Follow me on twitter @RobbioDobbio

This is a lesson plan I have designed for my CAE students who are about to take the exam. It is designed to help them prepare for the four use of English exercises in paper 1. You could set the worksheet as homework or have students complete it stage by stage in class in pairs or individually. Download the worksheet and key below:

CAE Use of English Training

CAE Use of English Training Key

Part 1 – Multiple Choice Cloze

Complete the 4 sentences with the words in the box below:

  1. I’ve been trying to get _______ of my boss all morning but he’s not picking up.
  2. The government realises that homelessness is an issues but has failed to ________ the scale of the problem.
  3. The article gives a fascinating ________ into the lives of the most vulnerable people in society.
  4. The _________ was dawning that this was a major disaster.
Insight Realisation Hold Grasp
  1. It’s just a ________of time before all courses are taught at least partially online.
  2. The police are only beginning to realise the complexity of the _________ now.
  3. The ______ of the accident has yet to be identified, but police have their suspicions.
  4. Since the inconclusive elections the political system has been in a _______ of disarray.
State Situation Matter Cause
  1. After the show I was ________ by an agent from a record company and offered a contract.
  2. Over the course of the trip we _________ many difficulties but we carried on regardless.
  3. After 30 years of service to the company he was _________ with a golden Rolex watch.
  4. They ________ us double what we originally paid for the house so we accepted straightaway.
Presented Offered Encountered Approached
  1. After several attempts to untie the knot I had to ________ defeat and cut the rope with a knife.
  2. I’m afraid I can’t ________ you to enter this area, it’s a restricted zone.
  3. The family will ________ €25,000 in compensation for the damage caused in the accident.
  4. I’m sorry sir but your parking ________ has expired and you have to pay a fine.
Permit Admit Allow Receive
  1. Hi, I’ve come ______ the party, I’m a friend of Josh’s.
  2. When it comes _____ computers, I’m completely useless.
  3. My family originally comes _____ Scotland but I grew up in Birmingham.
  4. The console comes _____ 2 free games of your choosing.
From With To For
  1. University should be _________ to people from all backgrounds to increase equality.
  2. Planning and organising the whole festival in just 2 days is not __________.
  3. The summit of the mountain is only __________ to experienced climbers.
  4. It’s best to use turkey for this dish, but if it isn’t ___________, just use chicken.
Feasible Obtainable Accessible Reachable
  1. We must do more challenge stereotypical gender _______ like male heroes and females needing rescuing.
  2. My favourite comic-book _________ are Batman and Ironman because they’re just normal guys with amazing gadgets.
  3. He is a general in the army and he certainly looks the ________.
  4. Surfing isn’t a hobby dude, it’s a _______ of mind!
Characters State Part Roles

Part 2 – Open Cloze

Complete the sentences with 1 word.

  1. Two students, neither of ______ had done their homework, showed up to class.
  2. The study was carried _____ by a group of scientists from Harvard.
  3. The houses on my street, all of ______ were built over 200 years ago, are painted in a range of colours.
  4. It normally takes me an hour or ____ to get home from school.
  5. Sometimes as _____ as 50 people come to the free dance classes.
  6. The city has many places of interest, _____ the beautiful roman buildings in the centre ___ the ultra-modern harbour side.
  7. I try to do at least a little exercise ____ a daily basis.
  8. The government have cut spending on education. ______ this means is that class sizes will increase.
  9. This part of the building is in the process of ______ repaired.
  10. _____ there were so many people at the concert, people had to sit on each other’s laps.
  11. The problems associated ____ shooting the film underwater were a real headache for the director.
  12. The development of smaller, hand-held cameras led ____ photography becoming a popular hobby.
  13. In the past people _____ have to wait up to a week for their photographs to be developed.
  14. They were ____ the point of calling off the search when they found the missing dog sleeping under a tree.
  15. When taken ____ a whole, the Lord of the Rings saga is one of the most impressive stories ever told.
  16. He has written well _____ a thousand songs in his career. (much more than)
  17. We’re thinking about having our house done ____ this summer, but it might be too expensive.
  18. I’m still not sure ______ or not I lost my phone or someone stole it.

Part 3 – Word Formation

Put the correct negative prefix on the word: in-/dis-/il-/im-/ir-/un-

1.       ____legal

2.       ____secure

3.       ____regular

4.       ____logical

5.       ____predictable

6.       ____pleased

7.       ____sufficient

8.       ____reparable

9.       ____loyal

10.    ____literate

11.    ____rational

12.    ____adequate

13.    ____conventional

14.    ____professional

15.    ____willing

16.    ____capable

17.    ____able

18.    ____precise

19.    ____mature

20.    ____patient

21.    ____complete

22.    ____belief

23.    ____agreement

24.    ____affected

25.    ____pleasant

26.    ____coherent

27.    ____ accurate

28.    ____valid

29.    ____perfect

30.    ____certain

Complete the sentences with one of the words above, check the context, should the word be positive or negative?

  1. Don’t be so ___________! You have to wait for your turn like everyone else. PATIENCE
  2. I’m afraid there is ___________ money to pay everyone this month. SUFFICE
  3. There was a __________ smell coming from the kitchen that made my mouth water. PLEASE
  4. It was very difficult for the _______________ refugee children to fit in at school. LITERACY
  5. We finally reached a(n) ________________ about what to do with the money. AGREE
  6. I’m afraid that the damage to the car is _______________. REPAIR
  7. Your tickets are ___________ for the VIP area, take a glass of champagne and sit down. VALIDATION
  8. He was so drunk that his speech was completely ______________. COHERENCE
  9. Our son is so ___________ compared to the other boys in his class, he never gets in trouble. MATURITY
  10. If your ___________ behaviour continues, you’re going to be out of a job. PROFESSIONALISM
  11. I hate that kind of film, the endings are always so __________ you can see it coming a mile off. PREDICT
  12. What Donald Trump said about Mexican immigrants was completely _____________ and should be corrected at once. ACCURACY
  13. Luckily out area was _____________ by the storm and heavy rain. AFFECT
  14. Your work on the project was _______________ and I expect you to do better next time. ADEQUACY
  15. We should sack him immediately, he’s _____________ of arriving on time. CAPABILITY
  16. Calm down, we need to be ____________ and think about it carefully. RATIONALITY
  17. If they are ____________ to lower the price then we should break off negotiations. WILL
  18. When I was a teenager I felt very ____________ about my body, but I’m fine now. SECURITY
  19. The puzzle is still _____________, we’re missing 4 pieces. COMPLETION
  20. Her methods may be _______________, but they’re very effective. CONVENTION

Part 4 – Key Word Transformations

Choose the correct option to complete the key word transformations:

  1. Mauro says he prefers to do his homework on his own

RATHER

Mauro says that ______________________________________ do his homework with other people.

  1. He wouldn’t rather to
  2. He would rather not
  3. He would rather not to
  4. He rather wouldn’t

 

  1. Clara said that she had not seen the missing letter.

HAVING

Clara ___________________________________ the missing letter.

  1. Refused having seen
  2. Denied having to see
  3. Admitted to not having seen
  4. Denied having seen

 

  1. It took Layla five minutes to find her car keys.

SPENT

Layla ___________________________________ for her car keys.

  1. Spent five minutes looking
  2. Spent five minutes to search
  3. Spent five minutes finding
  4. Spent five minutes to find

 

  1. A short meeting of the cast will take place after today’s rehearsal.

BY

Today’s rehearsal ___________________________________________ a short meeting of the cast.

  1. Will be after by
  2. Followed after by
  3. Will be followed by
  4. Will followed by

 

  1. I’ll be happy to show you round the sights of my city when you come to visit me.

TAKE

It will be a _____________________________________________ sightseeing tour of my city when you come to visit me.

  1. Happiness taking you to a
  2. Pleasure to take you on a
  3. Pleasing to take you to a
  4. Pleasure taking you on a

 

  1. Rousseau painted fabulous pictures of the rainforest although he had never travelled outside Europe.

SPITE

Rousseau painted fabulous pictures of the rainforest ____________________________________ travelled outside Europe.

  1. In spite of the fact that he never
  2. In spite of he never
  3. In spite the fact he never
  4. In spite of never having

 

  1. It is thought that one in every five people cannot control how much they spend.

UNABLE

One in every five people is thought _______________________________ their spending under control.

  1. To be unable to keep
  2. That is unable to control
  3. Of being unable to control
  4. Unable to keep

Key

Part 1:

1.       Hold

2.       Grasp

3.       Insight

4.       Realisation

 

1.       Matter

2.       Situation

3.       Cause

4.       State

 

1.       Approached

2.       Encountered

3.       Presented

4.       Offered

 

1.       Admit

2.       Allow

3.       Receive

4.       Permit

1.       For

2.       To

3.       From

4.       With

 

1.       Accessible

2.       Feasible

3.       Reachable

4.       Obtainable

 

1.       Roles

2.       Characters

3.       Part

4.       State

 

Part 2:

1.       Whom

2.       Out

3.       Which

4.       So

5.       Many

6.       From, to

7.       On

8.       What

9.       being

10.    as/since/because

11.    with

12.    to

13.    would

14.    on

15.    as

16.    over

17.    up

18.    whether

Part 3:

1.       illegal

2.       insecure

3.       irregular

4.       illogical

5.       unpredictable

6.       displeased

7.       insufficient

8.       irreparable

9.       disloyal

10.    illiterate

11.    irrational

12.    inadequate

13.    unconventional

14.    unprofessional

15.    unwilling

16.    incapable

17.    unable (adjective) disable (verb)

18.    imprecise

19.    immature

20.    impatient

21.    incomplete

22.    disbelief

23.    disagreement

24.    unaffected

25.    unpleasant

26.    incoherent

27.    inaccurate

28.    invalid

29.    imperfect

30.    uncertain

 

1.       impatient

2.       insufficient

3.       pleasant

4.       illiterate

5.       agreement

6.       irreparable

7.       valid

8.       incoherent

9.       mature

10.    unprofessional

11.    predictable

12.    inaccurate

13.    unaffected

14.    inadequate

15.    incapable

16.    rational

17.    unwilling

18.    insecure

19.    incomplete

20.    unconventional

Part 4:

  1. b
  2. d
  3. a
  4. c
  5. b
  6. d
  7. a