Read three different descriptions of early school memories. What are the memories about? Are the memories happy or unhappy? Note down three memories for each speaker

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Read three different descriptions of early school memories. What are the memories about? Are the memories happy or unhappy? Note down three memories for each speaker

speaker 1It's odd, you know, because, I can't remember very much about my first year at school, but I remember very clearly the first time I went to kindergarten. My mum drove me there in the morning, and I think I was only supposed to stay a few hours -anyway that's what she told me later. Well, I can clearly recall the place. We went up an outdoor staircase with a sort of concrete balcony at the top. There was, there was a glass door with another half door leading into the main room. I can still picture a big, bare room with toys scattered on the floor. I, I can't recall there being any other children there, but I suppose there must have been. Anyway, mum stayed for a bit and played with me and then she left. Oh, I remember that moment as clearly as if it was yesterday. I ran to the door at the top of the steps and hung on to the handle, screaming and sobbing hysterically. I have no idea how long I stayed there, but it seemed like forever. Anyway, then mum came to fetch me and I never went back there again.

speaker 2I'll never forget my first riding lesson at school. I must have been four or five perhaps. We had to choose between riding and piano. I chose riding. I recall the journey to the riding stables. I was tremendously excited. A lady called Mrs Jenkins, came to fetch us in a sort of mini-bus and she took us to her farm a few miles away. She was a very loud lady, but very friendly and I don't recall being at all frightened. Then I tried on riding hats until I found one my size. I can even remember the feel of the elastic under my chin and the marvellous smell of the saddles. I can't remember much about the ponies on that first day, but I can clearly recall being covered in mud when I got home. I can also remember enjoying that very much too! It is one of my most vivid memories and I'm sure that wonderful first impression made me fall in love with riding.

speaker 3I have a very blurred memory of my first day at school, so I suppose it can't really have upset me very much. What I remember most were the new smells, and in particular, the smell of my new blouse. It was a sort of soft cotton with a very distinctive smell. I can also recall struggling to do up my tie. Apart from that, I can't even picture my teacher's face or those of the other children. One particular memory has stuck in my mind, and unfortunately it set me against the school for a long time. One morning, when the bell went, the headmistress called us all into assembly and held up an empty bag of sweets. She waved it about and then said that she had left it on the hall table and someone had stolen the contents. She said that she knew who the culprit was and would give her two minutes to own up. Everyone went very quiet. Nobody said a word. Then, she called me out to the front, grabbed my arm and said to the rest of the school that not only was I a thief, but 1 was also a coward. I remember being completely bewildered and humiliated. I couldn't believe what was happening to me. I had never stolen anything in my life and I couldn't understand why she was accusing me of stealing the sweets. From that day I hated her and the school.

Translate into English


Обычно в Англии в школу начинают ходить в пять лет, но некоторые дети еще раньше ходят в дошкольную подготовительную группу (nursery school).

Некоторые родители отдают своих детей в дневные садики, где за ними присматривают в течение рабочего дня, но если у родителей есть кое-какие учебники и книги, они занимаются с детьми дома, учат их читать и писать, так что, когда ребенок идет в школу в пять лет, он подготовлен лучше других детей.

И все же настоящее образование начинается именно с пяти лет. С этого возраста до девяти лет дети посещают частную школу, и это довольно необычно для Англии.

Уровень подготовки в школе очень высокий: дети изучают такие предметы, как французский язык, математика и английская литература. Кроме этого можно брать уроки балета и риторики, на этих уроках детей учат правильно говорить, заучивать наизусть и читать стихотворения.

Questions on the topic

1. When did you enter the University (institute)? Who was the first to

congratulate you on this event? Was it difficult to realize your dream -- to become a student of the faculty? If so, why?

2. What entrance exams to the University did you take? Were they oral or written exams? Which examination turned out to be the most difficult exam of all for you? Why?

3. What is your purpose in learning English? Have you good knowledge of English? Which aspect do you find the most difficult one? What should you do to acquire good knowledge of English? Are you a member of the Student Scientific Society?

4. Where can Englishmen get higher education? Could you give the names of some universities of Great Britain? Which of them are the oldest universities? What is typical of the teaching methods at Oxford and Cambridge universities? Explain the essence of the tutorial system.

Talking points

Express your opinion about the following statements. Try to use as many different phrases as possible.

1. Education is the responsibility of parents.

2. Grammar rules don’t really help you to speak English.

3. The more words you know the more fluently you’ll be able to speak.

4. The British are very polite; you need to use so many unnecessary words when you speak English.

5. English is difficult because it has many exceptions.

6. Doing the same things twice is boring.

7. It’s hard to convince others when you are not convinced yourself.

8. No news is good news.

9. Life is what you make of it.

10. One should judge people by appearances not by actions.

11. Our examination session is not a holiday time.

12. What determines the lecturer’s success?

13. What do you think is more difficult — learning or teaching?

14.The students of your faculty are going to set up a Students' Debating Club. What problems of your life and studies would you raise for debate? Here are some suggestions: ... .

15. Is students' tourism a luxury or a necessity?

16. A students' group. How do you see it?


5. Here are some viewpoints on ’’How to train a specialist better’’. Sometimes they are contradictory. Discuss and criticize them. Give your arguments for and against. Think out your own problems for discussion. Use the hints given below.


1. Institutes, especially technical ones, should admit more young people with practical experience in industry. Evening and correspondence departments should be expanded.

2. In present-day conditions, the existence of evening and correspondence departments is absoluteiy unjustified. The combining of studies and work means extreme physical and mental stress which leads to shortcomings in work and in studies.

3. Syllabuses are overloaded. Not every scrap of knowledge which students acquire finds application.

4. There is no such thing as useless koowledge.

5. Some courses rush the students too quickly even though they are very important; others are too slow.

6. Text-books should be more self-instructive.

7. What is taught in science education sometimes lags behind currently accepted concepts.

8. To keep up with the time students must see how ’’science is done’’. The basic principle of an Institute should be to give academic training in close cooperation with research Institutes, design bureaus and industry.

Hints for a debate:

The chairman outlines the problem. The first (the second) speaker gives his (her) arguments. The speakers question, each other. The rest of the students put questions to the speakers, make suggestions, put forward objections. The chairman rounds up the discussion.

Introducing your point of view, expressing agreement say: To my mind; In my opinion; It seems to me that; As I see the problem; I quite agree with you; It goes without saying; I see; There is something in what you say

Expressing your disagreement say: On the contrary; I don't quite understand what you mean; I disagree with you on this point; I can't quite agree with you; I can't see why

Making yourself understood say: I mean to say that; You haven't quite caught my meaning; In other words; Do you follow me?

Bringing the discussion back to the point say: Let’s go in for details; Let’s keep to the point; You're getting away from the point

Winding up the talk say: To surn it up; In short

Admitting that you are beaten in the argument say: I admit I was wrong; I give in.



Read the stories

1.The wife of a foreign graduate student could not speak a word of English and so was terrified every time the telephone rang when her husband was not at home. He taught her to say, «Mr. Montoya is not at home». But this didn’t help much because the caller usually continued talking. He then taught her to add, «He will be back this afternoon.»

Her problem was still unsolved because callers sometimes left messages she couldn’t understand. Finally, the couple figured out a solution. When the phone rang, Mrs. Montoya answered, «Mr. Montoya is not at home. He will be back this afternoon. This is a recording.»


Three students were talking one day about their dreams for the future.

One of the students was a struggling young painter. The second was planning a career in the business world, and the third was studying philosophy.

«I’d like to be as famous as Picasso,» said the painter.

«I’d like to be as rich and powerful as Rockefeller,» said the business student.

The student of philosophy waited for a few moments before he spoke, and then he looked at the other two and said very quietly, «You know there are only two great tragedies in life.»

«What do you mean?» said the others.

«Well,» he said, «the first is not to get the thing you want the most in life.»

«And what is the second?» they asked.

«The second,» he replied, «is to get it.»


Income Tax


One day a teacher was giving her young students a lesson on how the government works. She was trying to explain the principle of income tax:

«You see,» she began, speaking slowly and carefully, «each person who works must pay part of his or her salary to the government. If you make a high salary, your taxes are high. If you don’t make much money, your taxes are low.»

«Is that clear?» she asked. «does everyone understand the meaning of income tax?»

The students nodded.

«Are there any questions?» she asked. The students shook their heads.

«Very good,» she said. «Now, I would like you to take a piece of paper and write a short paragraph on the subject of income tax.»

Little Joey was a slow learner. He had lots of problems with spelling and grammar, but this time at least he seemed to understand the assignment. He grabbed his pen and after a few minutes, he handed the teacher the following composition:

Once I had a dog. His name was Tax.

I opened the door and income tax.



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