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Aptis Speaking 6: Cómo Mejorar tus Respuestas

Cómo mejorar tus respuestas

Aptis Speaking 6: Cómo Mejorar tus Respuestas

En el Examen de Práctica 6 original te dimos algunas ideas sobre cómo mejorar tus respuestas.  En esta versión vamos a darte muchas más.

Nos hemos dado cuenta de que muchos de tus alumnos dan respuestas bastante básicas a las preguntas, así que vamos a ver cómo puedes utilizar una gama más amplia de estructuras gramaticales, expresiones, vocabulario y phrasal verbs.

Para ello, vamos a mostrarte ejemplos de una respuesta básica del tipo A2, y luego una respuesta mejor del tipo B1/B2. Las partes relevantes de cada respuesta están subrayadas.  Puedes leer primero el guión y luego ver el vídeo, o hacerlo al revés.

Al final de este post también encontrarás el guión completo de nuestros ejemplos de respuestas al estilo B2.

Cómo mejorar tus respuestas: Guión del vídeo

Recuerda que, en cada caso, la primera respuesta de ejemplo está en un nivel más básico, mientras que la segunda (en negrita) está en el nivel B1/B2.

Speaking Part One

What do you like doing in summer?

  • I like swimming. I go to the beach every day.
  • Well, I’m really keen on swimming, so I love spending time at the beach when I can.
  • I like walking in the country too. It’s a very healthy hobby.
  • I’m also into going for country walks. It’s a great way to keep fit.
  • I like seeing my friends in summer.
  • And something else I really enjoy is hanging out with friends on the long summer evenings.

 

(synonyms of ‘like’, common expressions, phrasal verb)

 

What did you do last weekend?

  • On Saturday I went to Madrid. I lived there when I was a child and I have friends there.
  • I spent Saturday in Madrid. I used to live there when I was a child, so I’ve got lots of friends to visit.
  • On Sunday we went to the country. We go there every weekend.
  • On Sunday we drove to the countryside. We’ve been spending weekends there since I was a child.
  • I stayed at home in the evening because it was raining a lot. I watched TV.
  • I didn’t do anything special on Sunday night – it was pouring, so I caught up with my favourite TV series.

 

(variety of tenses, common expressions, phrasal verb)

 

Please tell me about your best holiday.

  • My best holiday was when I visited my friends in London.
  • The best holiday I’ve ever had was when I was invited to stay with friends who live in London.
  • We visited monuments and went on a boat on the River Thames. It was good.
  • We went sightseeing and also took a boat trip down the Thames, which was a great experience.
  • I loved London. I’m going to go again next year.
  • I really fell in love with London. I’ve been invited to go back next year, and I can’t wait!

 

(variety of tenses, passive forms, relative clauses, common expressions)

 

Speaking Part Two

Describe this picture. (Muestra el humo que sale de las chimeneas de las fábricas en una gran ciudad.)

  • I can see a big city and a river. There are factories near the river.
  • The photo shows an industrial area on the riverbank of a major city.
  • There’s a lot of smoke and pollution from the factories.
  • It looks quite polluted, as clouds of smoke are coming out of the factory chimneys.
  • It’s a modern city. There are lots of tall buildings. Maybe it’s New York.
  • It could be New York, as there are skyscrapers in the background. Or maybe the photo was taken in Asia.

 

(range of vocabulary, look + adjective, modal verb, passive form)

 

What is the major cause of pollution where you live?

  • I think the biggest problem is traffic in the city centre. Cars and buses cause a lot of pollution.
  • In my opinion, exhaust fumes are the major problem. Air quality has been getting worse in the city centre.
  • Factories also cause pollution. And there’s a big problem with their rubbish too.
  • Pollution is also caused by factories and waste products from industries.
  • Rubbish in the streets is a problem too. People drop plastic bottles and drinks cans.
  • And it’s not only industries causing problems – the city centre’s covered in litter left behind by shoppers and tourists.

 

(expression of opinion, range of vocabulary, passive voice)

 

What has the government done to try to solve these problems?

  • There are electric buses and trams now.
  • Alternative forms of public transport such as electric buses and trams have been introduced.
  • You can’t drive in the city centre, but there are city bikes you can use.
  • Driving in the city centre has been banned, but there are city bikes for hire.
  • There are more places for people to recycle their rubbish now too.
  • Many more recycling bins have been provided, both in residential areas and commercial centres.

 

(variety of tenses, passive forms, common expressions)

 

Speaking Part Three

Tell me what you see in these two pictures.  (La primera foto muestra a un grupo de personas haciendo un picnic en un parque, y la segunda muestra a una pareja teniendo una cena romántica en un restaurante.)

  • In the first picture I can see four people having a picnic. In the second photo there’s a man and a woman in a restaurant.
  • The first photo shows a family – or it might be a group of friends – having a picnic, whereas the second shows a couple having a romantic meal in a restaurant.
  • I think the park is in a town, because there are houses behind it. The weather’s sunny.
  • The park must be in a residential area, as there are houses in the background. The people are wearing T-shirts, so the photo was probably taken in summer.
  • The people in the restaurant are looking at each other. They’re wearing smart clothes.
  • The photo of the couple was taken at night, so it could be any season. They’re holding hands and gazing at each other – it looks like they’re in love.

 

(connectors, modal verbs, look like + clause, passive forms, common expressions)

 

What types of people enjoy eating out in these different situations?

  • Picnics are popular with families because they’re cheaper than restaurants.
  • People with large families would probably enjoy a picnic, as it’s far cheaper than eating out at a restaurant.
  • Older people usually choose to eat in a restaurant, because it’s more comfortable.
  • Older people might not feel comfortable sitting on the ground, so they’re more likely to enjoy the restaurant experience.
  • And on special occasions, I think everyone enjoys eating at a restaurant.
  • If it’s a special occasion, most people probably feel it’s worth spending the money on a good restaurant.

 

(modal verbs, connectors, expressions of probability, common expressions)

 

Which eating experience would you prefer, and why?

  • I usually like restaurants more than picnics because I don’t like preparing food.
  • Well, it depends. Eating in restaurants is less hassle than having to buy, prepare and carry all the food and drink.
  • But in summer I enjoy a picnic more, because it’s more informal and cheaper too.
  • On the other hand, in summer I’d rather have a picnic, as it’s loads more fun and you don’t have to worry about the bill!
  • But if it’s a special occasion, I think a restaurant is better.
  • Although if I were celebrating a special occasion, I’d prefer to dress up and go to a posh restaurant.

 

(expressions of preference, conditionals, connectors, range of vocabulary)

 

Speaking Part Four

Tell me about a time when you received a present.  How did you feel about it?

  • I remember my tenth birthday. I really wanted a dog when I was a child, and my dad gave me a big box.
  • I’ll never forget my tenth birthday. I’d wanted a puppy since I was really little, and my dad came home with a big box.
  • I felt excited because there were pictures of animals on the box, so I knew it was from the pet-shop.
  • I felt incredibly excited because the box was covered with pictures of animals, so I could tell it was from the pet-shop.
  • But when I opened the box and looked inside, it was a tortoise. I felt sad because I wanted a dog.
  • I was sure it was going to be a dog. So you can imagine how I felt when I saw it was a tortoise ­– I was so disappointed!

 

(variety of tenses, passive forms, extreme adverb, common expressions)

 

Do you think that giving presents is an important part of our culture?  Why?  Why not?

  • In Spain, giving presents on January the 6th is an important part of our culture.
  • In Spanish culture the key date for giving presents has always been January the 6th, when the Three Wise Men bring all the gifts.
  • Many families also give presents on Christmas Day now too.
  • Nevertheless, these days the custom of giving presents on Christmas Day has become almost as popular and also forms part of our culture now.
  • I think it’s important, especially at Christmas or on birthdays.
  • To my mind, giving presents really means a lot to most people, whatever date it is. Nobody likes being forgotten!

 

(expression of opinion, variety of tenses, range of vocabulary, common expressions)

Después de ver este vídeo sobre cómo mejorar tus respuestas

Vuelve a ver la versión original del Examen de Práctica 6, y responde a las preguntas dentro de los límites de tiempo. Estamos seguros de que notarás una mejora.

Y recuerda que puedes encontrar la lista completa de todas nuestras actividades de práctica del examen en la Guía de las entradas.

Por último, para darte aún más ideas sobre cómo mejorar tus respuestas, aquí tienes algunos ejemplos de respuestas del B2 para que los estudies.  (No se leen en el vídeo).

Speaking Part One

What do you like doing in summer?

Well, I’m really keen on swimming, so I love spending time at the beach when I can. I’m also into going for country walks, and it’s a great way to keep fit, both physically and mentally. And something I really enjoy is hanging out with friends on the long summer evenings. We usually go for a drink or catch a film at the outdoor cinema.

What did you do last weekend?

I spent Saturday in Madrid. I used to live there when I was a child, so I’ve got lots of friends to visit. On Sunday we drove to the countryside. We’ve been spending weekends there since I was a child. I didn’t do anything special on Sunday night. It was pouring with rain, so I curled up on the sofa and caught up with my favourite TV series.

Please tell me about your best holiday.

The most fantastic holiday I’ve ever had was when I was invited to stay with friends who live in London. We went sightseeing and also took a boat trip down the Thames, which was a great experience. London’s nothing like my hometown, and I really fell in love with it. I’ve been invited to go back next year, and I can’t wait!

 

Speaking Part Two

Describe this picture. (It shows smoke coming out of factory chimneys in a big city.)

The photo shows an industrial area on the riverbank of a major city. In the foreground you can see factory buildings with tall chimneys. They look quite old-fashioned, so they were probably built before the city grew bigger. Great clouds of smoke are coming out of the chimneys and blowing towards the city, so it looks quite polluted. It’s a modern-looking city. It could be New York, as there are skyscrapers in the background, and one of them looks like the Empire State building. Or maybe the photo was taken somewhere in Asia.

What is the major cause of pollution where you live?

In my opinion, exhaust fumes are the major problem. Air quality has been getting worse, especially in the city centre. There’s so much traffic in general, and too many people drive instead of taking buses, if you ask me. This is causing health problems, such as asthma. It’s been in the news a lot recently. A lot of pollution is also caused by factories and waste products from industrial companies. And it’s not only industries that are causing problems – the city centre’s covered in litter left behind by shoppers and tourists.

What has the government done to try to solve these problems?

Alternative forms of public transport such as electric buses and trams have been introduced. Driving in the city centre has mostly been banned, which is really helping to cut pollution levels. Some shop owners have complained that now they get fewer customers, although this will probably change. There are city bikes for hire, and these are easy to use and cheap too. And bike lanes have been introduced to encourage people to cycle more and drive less. Many more recycling bins have been provided, both in residential areas and commercial centres.

 

Speaking Part Three

Tell me what you see in these two pictures. (The first photo shows a group of people having a picnic in a park, and the second shows a couple having a romantic dinner in a restaurant.)

Both photos are of people having a meal. The first shows a family – or it could be a group of friends – having a picnic outdoors, whereas the second shows a couple having a romantic meal in a restaurant. The park must be in a residential area, as there’s a row of houses in the background. The people are wearing T-shirts, so the photo was probably taken in summer. The photo of the couple was taken at night, so it could be any season. They’re holding hands and gazing at each other – it looks like they’re in love.

What types of people enjoy eating out in these different situations?

People with large families would probably enjoy a picnic, as it’s far cheaper than eating out at a restaurant. However, older people might not feel comfortable sitting on the ground, so they’re more likely to enjoy the restaurant experience. Price is definitely a factor, although if it’s a special occasion, most people probably think it’s worth spending the money on a good meal in an upmarket restaurant. And of course it would be especially enjoyable for the people who usually have to do all the cooking at home!

Which eating experience would you prefer, and why?

Well, it all depends. Eating in restaurants is less hassle than having to buy, prepare and carry all the food and drink. On the other hand, in summer I’d rather have a picnic, as it’s loads more fun and, best of all, you don’t have to worry about getting a nasty shock when you see the bill! On the other hand, if I were celebrating a special occasion, I’d prefer to dress up and go to a posh restaurant. So there are many factors to consider, really – including the weather, prices and whether it’s a special celebration.

 

Speaking Part Four

NOTA: Como hemos explicado antes, a veces es mejor combinar las preguntas uno y dos, porque va más naturalmente con la historia. Siempre que respondas a las tres preguntas, esto está bien.

Tell me about a time when you received a present. How did you feel about it?

I’ll never forget my tenth birthday. I’d wanted a puppy since I was really little, and my dad came home with a big box. I felt incredibly excited because the box was covered with pictures of animals, so I could tell it was from the pet-shop. And I could hear and feel something moving around in the box, which was quite heavy. I was sure it was going to be a dog. So you can imagine how I felt when I saw it was a tortoise ­– I was so disappointed! But I tried to look happy so that my parents wouldn’t feel bad. And in the end it turned out to be quite a fun pet – lots of my friends had one too, so we organised tortoise races in the communal garden!

Do you think that giving presents is an important part of our culture?  Why?  Why not?

As I see it, giving presents has always been an important part of our culture. In Spain the key date for giving presents always used to be January the 6th, when the Three Wise Men bring all the gifts. However, these days the custom of also giving presents on Christmas Day has become almost as popular. It forms part of our culture now, although not everybody is in favour of celebrating Santa Claus – they think it’s too commercial. To my mind, giving presents really means a lot to most people, whatever date it is. Nobody likes being forgotten on their birthdays or on other special occasions, and we all love getting a gift – ­even if it’s not exactly what you wanted!

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