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Темы для экзамена по английскому языку


Kursorefka

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Days: 2739

Posts: 45

БИЛЕТ 13
Чем наиболее часто занимается в свободное время подростки в разных странах (в США, Великобритании)? А что привлекает тебя? Почему?
Leisure time
It is not easy to say exactly what teenagers in different countries do in their leisure time. I think that, in the main our interests and tastes do not differ very much. They are engaged in sports activities. They listen to their favourite music bands or take part in different concerts. Teenagers discover the world and themselves. In the main, all young people are individualists. Youth is the time when young people work out their outlook. At the same time they need collective experience to share their dreams and interests. Teenagers unite in specific organisations.
The first organisation that brought together thousands of teenagers in different countries was that of the Scouts. The aim of this association was originally to train boys in various different skills such as lighting a fire and to develop their character. Now the Scouts are active all around the world. The motto of the Scouts is «Be Prepared.» After the October Revolution a similar Pioneer organisation was created in Russia. The Pioneers were supported and sponsored by the government. Now the Pioneers do not exist in our country.
The Scouts and Pioneers were the first, but not the only organisations of the young people. For example today the volunteer movement is extremely popular among the teenagers. It dates back to the year 1921, when a French soldier decided to restore a German house after World War I free of charge. The movement flourished only in the late 1990s when young people of Europe and the United States went to different parts of the world helping local communities to solve their problems. Today volunteerism is very popular in American community and political life. Volunteerism implies assisting people through privately initiated agencies. Volunteers do not receive any salary for what they are doing, but at the same time their work is highly motivated. They react very quickly, immediately coming to help to whoever may need it. There are several types of volunteer work: workcamps, mid-term and long-term volunteering projects. Any young man from any continent can come to workcamps. These camps attain certain objectives in social, ecological, archaeological fields. Usually all works are done under the supervision of professionals. The mid-and long-term projects usually concern the social sphere. They include assistance to children, old people, crippled or immigrants. Volunteer fund-raising groups unite to help the needy in all spheres. They can do almost any work that is necessary. Volunteers can be found in any part of the globe. In the United States six out of ten pupils are members of some volunteer organisations.
All three organisations that were mentioned above are more or less formal. At the same time there are many informal associations of teenagers. Very often they are not even registered, and if they are, no one cares about what they are doing. No records are kept of their activities. They emerge, evolve and disintegrate without leaving trace in history. Nevertheless such organisations are extremely important for their participants. They serve as a means for teenagers to express themselves, meet new friends that have common interests, discuss problems that are really important to them. Quite often a famous book, a movie or a musical band can serve as an impulse for creating such organisations. Fan clubs of different rock and pop groups are numerous. Fan clubs usually consist of teenagers. Members of such clubs listen collectively to their favourite songs, attend concerts, write letters to their idols.
The most spectacular example of unofficial organisation is presented by the Tolkienist movement. J.R.R. Tolkien, the famous British writer created a magic world of elves, dwarves, and hob-bits. Any person who likes Tolkiens novels can become a Tolkienist. This community is open to everyone; young people come and go, they choose a race, becoming, for example, an elf or a goblin. Their imagination will carry them as far as they want. In Russia Tolkien is extremely popular now. In Moscow there are several places where his fans assemble to share their views and ideas.
Other teenagers go much further. They are not satisfied with the world they are living in, and the worlds created by others do not attract them either. They create their own worlds and universes. In this context Role-Playing Games (also called RPG) should be mentioned. The first RPG was Dungeons and Dragons (DnD), a Dungeon Muster (DM) is responsible for outlining the rules of the newly created world, while other players act as the inhabitants of this world, Participating in such activity can be really thrilling, but the danger of quitting the real world for an imaginary one is always present. Such groups and organisations are escapists in their essence. Unlike volunteers they are not aimed at making our world better.
– Why do the young organise their clubs?
– The young do not want to accept the world of the adults with their organisations for the teenagers. They rebel against it in different ways, sometimes in the form of creating their unofficial organisations and clubs. They organise according to their interests into different sub-cultural groups.
– Do you belong to any group or organisation?
– No, I do not. My elder brother used to be a Pioneer, but now such official or semi-official organisations do not attract me. For a couple of years I attended the meetings of the Tolkienists, acting as a little dwarf. Although I am still a great fan of Tolkiens books, I do not think any longer that I should waste my time living an imaginary life in the imaginary world. The world we all are living in is full of wonders. There is always somebody who needs our help. A lot of my friends are supporters of Greenpeace, and I will soon join their actions. Greenpeace is doing a very important job of rescuing the nature. People of different ages help Greenpeace, and I believe that young people should participate in the activities of this organisation more actively.
– What do your friends do in their leisure time?
– As I have already said, some of my friends help Greenpeace. I still have many friends among the Tolkienists. Some of my friends are fond of RPGs. They meet every Saturday in groups of 5 or 6, They draw a map and for hours discuss the fates of their heroes. One game can last several months or sometimes a year. Although my best friend who is a Dungeon Master often invites me to join his RPG, I am sure that the real life is much more interesting than any imaginary adventures.

18/4-2012 0:54


Kursorefka

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Days: 2739

Posts: 45

БИЛЕТ 14
Молодежь, любит разные музыкальные стили. Какие из них популярны сейчас? Какой стиль ближе всего тебе? Почему?
20-th century music styles
The 20-th century is by all means considered to be the most influential period of time in the development of music. In the 20-th century there were more practising musicians than in all previous centuries taken together. In the 20-th century there was no mainstream but various styles in music. It is not an easy task to describe these music styles. They reflect the world that was constantly changing. Desires and fears of the people of the 20-th century found their outlet in music. The 20-th century opened a new era in the history of mankind, and the new epoch was to be described in new musical forms. The rules were left in the past. In the 20-th century everybody could choose the music that he would enjoy. It was exciting in its adventurous freedom.
In the 1920s in New Orleans beautiful music filled the streets and cafes. The black and poor singers sang about their hard lives. Their music - jazz, ragtime and blues - soon travelled to Europe. It was the time when the black music entered the whites culture changing the lifestyle of the people all over the world. Ever since the 1930s music was not just a way to relax. From that time on music began to reflect and determine the peoples way of life.
Many sub-cultures developed as a result of the fusion of black and white music cultures. Black music evolved in the Caribbean and in the United States, later it moved to Britain. Such styles as reggae, rap, hip-hop to say nothing of the blues were created by the black community. Today many white musicians either perform the black music or use the black melodies in creating their own songs.
In the 1940s and 1950s new styles of music emerged. Swing, rocknroll and singers like Jerry Lee Lewis and Chuck Berry destroyed the laws of morality that were imposed on the people by the Church for centuries. In the 1950s Elvis Presley became the king of rock n roll in the United States of America. The new music travelled to Europe soon. It was especially popular among the teenagers. The parents were really shocked by «Devils music» that their children adored. The young people disagreed with their parents, wore their jeans and danced to their rock n roll records.
In the 1960s in Great Britain, in Liverpool a new band was created. It was soon to be known world-wide as the «Beatles». John Lennon and Paul McCartney were writing simple songs and performing them so brilliantly that they gave a new impulse for the development of the musical community. Other members of the famous group were George Harrison and Ringo Starr. Such songs as «Yesterday», «Let It Be», «Love Me Do», and «Yellow Submarine» made them the most popular band not only in England, but throughout the world as well.
From the British Isles their music quickly travelled to Europe, America and other continents. Early in 1964 what soon came to be called «Beatlemania» struck the United States. For the first time British pop music was important abroad. Such U.S. performers as Chuck Berry and Elvis Presley admired the music of the «Beatles».
The long hair and tastes in dress of the musicians became popular in different countries. The freshness and excitement of the earliest days of rock n roll and simple but engaging lyrics of John Lennon and Paul McCartney kept the group at the top of popularity charts for several years. They won recognition from the music industry in the form of awards for performances and songs. Soon they became not only popular, but rich as well. With the money they earned they could experiment with new musical forms and arrangements. The result was a variety of songs ranging from ballads to complex rhythm tunes and songs of social comment. Their music inspired hundreds to create new music.
In 1969 at Woodstock, near New York a great rock festival attracted nearly half a million young people. Most of them were hippies, who shocked the world with their beards, long hair, old jeans and their calls for peace and love. They came to listen to such new stars as Jimmy Hendrix and Joe Cocker. They sang about the war in Vietnam and about violence in the world. The music performed at Woodstock had a tremendous influence on the development of the culture of the youth. The young people rose in protest against the mercantile society. The ideals of the hippies are still living in many hearts. In the middle of the 1990s the Woodstock festivals were revived. But today Woodstock is no longer a great party it used to be in 1969. Young people who come to Woodstock today simply want to see the violent youth of their parents.
The mid-1970s witnessed great changes in the music. The gentle mood of the 1960s was gone. The music became violent and aggressive. This was a protest of the new generation, not peaceful pacifist protest of Woodstock, but protest aimed at the negation and destruction of the existing order. Hard rock, heavy metal and punk became popular among the young. Such groups as «AC/DC», «Kiss», «Black Sabbath», and «Sex Pistols» shocked the public by their music and behaviour. Although music of such kind still has its fans, the peak of its popularity has decreased.
Music that developed in the 1970s and 1980s had its own peculiarities. Melodies were simple and often unoriginal, different group would easily borrow the popular melodies written by competing groups. Young people would not listen alone to their favourite bands; they would rather have a get-together or a party or go to a disco club. The new music styles that appeared in the 1980s were aimed at dancing and disco clubs, thus rhythm and beat became more important than the melody.
Multiculturalism found its expression in the music. In the 1980s young people started to listen to different kinds of music and they were not afraid of choosing what they really loved. No single style or set of styles can be attributed to the 1980s and 1990s. The best world to characterise what was going on in the world of music at that time is diversification.
The epoch found its best expression in techno music. A British band «Depeche Mode» was the first to express the realities of a complex and constantly changing society through highly elaborate music. This was the music of technological advance and breakthrough, the message of the rhythm was the dependence of our civilisation on the machines that were able to do everything faster and better than humans do.
The 1990s witnessed further changes in the world of music. Pop music became extremely fashionable among young people. Madonna, Michael Jackson, and «Spice Girls», and «Backstreet Boys» give an example of what teenagers preferred to listen. At the same time a powerful opposition to the pop music appeared. Rave, techno, rap, chaos, and acid styles were gaining momentum in the 1990s. Young people who preferred this kind of music would never attend a pop show because of a general disgust and hatred for pop music.
The music of the 20-th century did a lot to change the outlook of the people, make peace, bring some positive social changes. It still plays a great role in the life of the people of the 21st century. Everything either happy or tragic that occurs in our life is set to music.
– What was typical of American music of the 20-th century?
– In the 20-th century the USA developed several distinctive and highly influential types of music: jazz, blues, country, and rocknroll. The most important performers were Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker, and John Coltrane in jazz; Muddy Waters in the blues, Hank Williams in country and western, and Elvis Presley in rock n roll.
– Does music play an important role in the life of young people?
– Yes, it does. It even determines their life style and fashion. Teenagers try to imitate their favourite musicians in appearance, dress, and lifestyles. Hippies originally tried to imitate the «Beatles;» Hippies usually have long hair, they are dressed in torn clothes. People who prefer heavy metal would rather be dressed in leather and be richly decorated with decorations made of iron.
– What groups are popular in Russia now?
– Young people in Russia prefer different styles of music. Among the most popular groups are «Mumiy Troll», «Agatha Christie», «Tatoo», «Bee-2». At the same time many Russian teenagers have a special liking to the Ukrainian and Moldavian bands. In this context «Vopli Vidopliasova», «Ocean Elzi», and «Sdob Si Sdub» can be mentioned. Some of these bands perform in their native languages, while others sing in Russian. In either case Russian youth can easily understand a song in Ukrainian.
– What music do you like?
– In fact I can listen to almost any kind of music, my tastes range from classic music to heavy metal. At the same time there are certain styles of music that I prefer. I believe that music should be energetic, that is why I am fond of the German group «Scooter» that performs electronic music. They were extremely popular in our country in the late 1990s, although in the English speaking countries not many were aware of their existence. In 1999 the «Scooter» visited Russia and gave a concert in Moscow at «Olympiysky.» This was a fantastic and unforgettable show. They performed all their best songs including their hit «How much is the fish?»
– What is your favourite band?
– As I have already mentioned there are many groups that I am fond of. A couple of years ago I preferred the «Scooter.» I still like this group, but now I think that the band I like most of all is the «Savage Garden.» This is an Australian group that started to perform in the 1990s. The members of the «Savage Garden» are Daniel Jones and Darren Hayes. My favourite song by the «Savage Garden» is «To the Moon and Back.» It is very lyrical and inspiring. Their latest singles are «Chained to You» and «I Knew I Loved You».

18/4-2012 0:55


Kursorefka

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Days: 2739

Posts: 45

БИЛЕТ 15
Какие традиционные виды спорта страны изучаемого языка ты знаешь? Популярны ли они в России? Какими видами спорта интересуются в твоей семье?
Sports in Great Britain, the USA and Russia
The British like sport very much. They are fond of all kinds of sports. Many sports were invented in Great Britain and then spread throughout the world. Sports became popular long ago. In the 19-th century sport was organised at public schools so that young people could develop their physical abilities. But shortly afterwards the idea was borrowed by businessmen who started to organise football and other sports for their workers. From the 1960s commercial companies began to sponsor different British sports and activities. The national British sports are: football, golf, cricket, tennis, racing, darts. Like everyone else the British adore football. Moreover, the Englishmen invented it.
Nobody can say for sure when people started playing football on the British Isles. It is important however, that current uniform rules of the game were settled only in the 19-th century. At that time there was a great debate, whether one could use his hand to kick the ball or not. Those who wanted to permit the players to carry the ball with their hands united to form rugby. Rugby is played by teams of 15 men with an oval ball. Those who insisted on playing with feet and head only had the majority and that was the beginning of football as everybody knows it today. In Great Britain and more often in the United States football is called soccer to distinguish the game from American football, the game that has much in common with rugby.
Soccer, played almost in all countries, remains one of the most popular games in Great Britain. Each team consists of field players and one goalkeeper. Only the goalkeeper is permitted to take the ball into his hands. The game lasts for 90 minutes with a 15 minute break between two halves 45 minutes each. Most British towns and cities have a football team. Every year, each team in England plays in the Football Association competition. The two best teams play in the Cup Final at Wembley Stadium in London. It is one of the biggest sporting events of the year.
Another traditional British game is cricket. Unlike football cricket is not widely spread outside the British Isles. Cricket is a summer game, it is played in schools, colleges, universities. Cricket is a very long and a very slow game. There are two teams. Each team consists of eleven men. The «bowler» throws the ball, and a «batsman» hits it with his bat.
Tennis is also very popular in Britain. Two different games that do not have much in common bear the name of tennis - lawn tennis and table tennis. Both games first appeared in England, but today the British prefer lawn tennis to table tennis. Every summer, in June, the biggest tournament in the world takes place at Wimbledon. This world centre of lawn tennis is located in a suburb of London. Millions of people watch the Wimbledon Championship on TV. Table tennis originated in England in 1880. But the British players are not lucky in table tennis international championships.
Englishmen like all kinds of racing. Horseracing, motorcar racing, boat racing, dog-racing, donkey racing are very popular in England. The most famous boat racing in England is between Oxford and Cambridge. It first started in 1820 and has been held almost every spring since 1836. A lot of people come to watch this competition between Englands leading universities.
Americans are interested in different sports and activities. The major American sports are ice hockey, baseball, American football and basketball. The large choice of sports in America can be explained by the variety and size of the country, its different climates and the peoples love of competitions of any type. The seasons of the «four major sports» often overlap.
Baseball is the most popular summer sport in America. But the first baseball games start in warm, sunny regions like Florida and Arizona in winter. The first American baseball match was held in 1839 in New York. There is an opinion that baseball comes from a much older game, played in Europe for many years. To play baseball, two teams of nine players are needed. The «pitcher» throws the ball, and the «batter» hits it with a bat. Americans start playing baseball young. There are «leagues» which children of eight can join. The top players become big stars.
Americans play most international sports, but they do not play football in the same way as the rest of the world. American football is a game that does not have much in common with soccer. The players can run with a ball, touch and push each other. The field is not traditional, and even the shape of the ball is different. American football players wear helmets on their heads, because the game is very dangerous. American football teams have eleven players.
Basketball was invented in the United States. A schoolteacher designed the rules for a game that his students could play indoors. There are only five players in a basketball team. Usually basketball players are very tall and they show that basketball can be exciting. Ice hockey is Americas favourite winter game. It is very fast. It can be dangerous and its players wear helmets too. Other sports and activities attract millions of participants and spectators in the USA. These are swimming, tennis, marathons, bowling, crosscountry skiing, skating, and badminton. Now triathlon is one of the most popular sports in the USA. Ч comprises swimming, bicycle racing and long-distance running.
Many sports are popular in Russia. There are many stadiums and public sports facilities here. Numerous national and international matches and competitions are regularly held in our country. They attract large numbers of fans. Most of the important games are shown on TV. Football is believed to be Russias favourite sport in summer, while many young people play ice hockey in winter. Our country has been successful in different sports, especially in ice hockey. During the Olympic Games the Russian athletes prove the reputation of Russia as worlds leading nation in sports. The national team of Russia has many times won the World Hockey Championships.
In Russia much attention is paid to organised sports and this shouldnt overshadow the many sporting activities which are part of daily Russian life. School children spend their free time playing football, basketball and other sports. In winter many Russians go in for skiing and skating. There are many skating rinks in the cities.
– Is sport popular in your country?
– Today there is widespread interest in sport in Russia.
– What games do you play at school?
– -During PT classes pupils play football, basketball, volleyball. Pupils also do many exercises that help them to keep fit. In winter schools organise skiing competitions.
– What games are popular in Russia?
– Football, ice hockey and volleyball are sure to be the most popular games in Russia. A lot of fans go to the stadium to support their teams. When it is not possible to go to the stadium to support the favourite team people can watch competitions on TV. Television has made sports available to all. The emphasis on sports is evident in evening news programmes.
– What football teams are popular in Russia?
– There are many good football teams in Russia. Moscow «Spartak» is the strongest and the most popular team in Russia. Thousands of «Spartak» supporters go to the stadium to see their team play. As for me, I prefer another Moscow team, «Locomotive.» There are good players in «Loco» and this team has a great potential. I am sure that soon «Loco» will take the place of «Spartak» as the nations champion.
– What British football teams do you know?
– In Great Britain there are four football championships that are held separately: in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The best players are in England. Many football players from continental Europe come to play for English teams. I guess that today the strongest football team on the British Isles is Manchester «United», although London «Arsenal» and «Chelsea» as well as Blackburn «Rovers» are fearful rivals. Scotland is noted for its Glasgow «Rangers.»
– Is football popular in the United States?
– Yes, it is. Football is extremely popular in the United States, but they have different rules of the game. The fact is that in the United States when they say football they mean American football, while European football is usually referred to as soccer. In the recent years soccer is gaining its popularity in the United States as well. In 1994 World Football Championship took place in the United States. Nevertheless in the United States soccer is especially popular among girls, while boys prefer sports that are more traditional for their country - American football, baseball and basketball.
– Are you keen on sport?
– Although sport plays an important role in my life, I do not go in for it professionally. My choice of the sports depends upon the season. In summer I like to swim in the lakes and rivers and in winter I like to skate. Skating is a widespread activity among my friends. There are many skating rinks in our town. As for jogging I do it every morning all year round.
– Is sport important for your family?
– Yes, it is. Our family is doing sports on the amateur level. My father is an avid chess player. My mother likes walking in the parks. My sister prefers to get fit at home. She has a lot of books and video-cassettes with instructions how to do home exercise programmes. Although I do not go in for sports, I am fond of such activities that allow me to keep fit at home. I prefer jogging. We also like to watch football, ice-hockey and tennis matches on TV.
– What do American school and colleges use sports activities far?
– American schools and colleges use sports activities as a way of teaching social values. Among these are teamwork and sportsmanship. The average high school offers its students a great variety of sports, including rowing, wrestling, tennis and golf. That is why Americans have done well in many kinds of sports.
– What is regarded as an ideal in the USA?
– Being intelligent and being good in sports are regarded as an ideal. There are many colleges that have excellent academic reputation and are also good in sports.
– What worries professional American athletes today?
– Today sport becomes more and more professional. But it is possible to show high results only at a certain age. Many sportsmen have to terminate their professional career in their thirties. At present professional athletes are concerned with getting a good education that will allow them to find good jobs when their playing days are over.
– Are there special «universities» for sports in the USA?
– There are no separate «universities» for sports in the USA. Everyone in America can participate in sports activities. Public sports facilities have always been available in great number for participants.

18/4-2012 0:55


Kursorefka

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Days: 2739

Posts: 45

БИЛЕТ 16
Одни люди занимаются спортом, другие предпочитают смотреть спортивные соревнования. Так что же лучше - заниматься или смотреть?
What is better watching sports or participating in sports?
Nowadays sport and recreation have become an important feature in the peoples life. But tastes differ and different people have different attitudes to sport and recreation. Some people prefer to watch different sports events, others choose to participate in them actively. Watching other people playing is a popular leisure activity. Large crowds attend numerous national and international occasions; millions watch them on television.
Among the most popular sports are football, hockey, basketball, tennis, and motor racing. Many people assemble to watch these competitions. World Football, Hockey and Basketball Championships attract people from all over the world who cover great distances in order to support their favourite team. Wimbledon Championship is the most important tournament of lawn tennis, while Grand Prix is the major motor racing competition. But of cause the most important sport event is the Olympiad that takes place every four years.
Most of the important games are shown on TV. In many countries there are special TV channels that broadcast sports programmes for 24 hours. The major sporting competitions, such as the Olympic games, are shown on the central TV channels attracting millions of people who can be thousands of kilometres away from the event. Popularity of sports differs from country to country. In Latin America football stadiums are always crowded, while the Russian fans are so disappointed with the poor performance of our football teams that many prefer not to watch the games even on TV.
I can not agree that it is good to disapprove of watching sports events and approve of participating in sports. The desire to follow the example of sports stars induces people to take up sports that they used to watch seriously. For example many young Russians are fond of playing football. Even if the Russian teams are far from being the best in the world, Brazilian, Italian and French players become the example that young people try hard to follow.
In the past decades peoples involvement in sport and recreation have grown considerably. Now there is a large variety of available opportunities and facilities. Sport is the best and the shortest way to health and fitness. Increasing number of people are involved today in activities that help them keep fit and enjoy life. Physical recreation tends to be informal and non-competitive and may include, for example, cycling, boating, jogging. Dancing has become a very popular recreation. Many Russians have started learning Latin American dances, such as samba, rumba, cha-cha-cha.
Sport and recreation facilities provided at schools and universities enable young athletes to develop their talents. In Russia schools and universities participate in sports tournaments, for example in football and basketball. Many facilities are made available by local clubs and parks. There are commercial facilities, which include bowling centres, skating rinks, tennis courts and riding stables.
According to the latest figures the most popular activity of all is walking. It is a well known fact that walking for an hour every day is more healthy than rare and irregular participation in any of the more active physical activities. To keep fit some people attend special classes or take part in aerobics or yoga, do some kind of weight training in a gym. Others play football, badminton, tennis.
Evidently participating in sports has more advantages than simply watching sports competitions. At the same time these two kinds of activities are tightly interconnected. Professional sport is important not only for the professional athletes, one of its missions is to propagandise and popularise sports activities on the everyday level. At the same time it is always an individual preference. And only the individual has the right to decide what is better for him. But whatever the choice is, the pleasure is undoubted.
– Do you like to watch sports events on TV?
– Yes, of course. It is wonderful that television is bringing all kinds of sports to our homes. Sometimes I go to the stadium to watch a game, but more often I stay at home and watch matches on TV.
– What sports do you prefer to watch?
– Football and tennis are my favourite sports. I try not to miss the most important football and lawn tennis tournaments and watch them on TV. The fact that I prefer to watch sports competitions on TV does not mean that I am lazy. Unfortunately, Russia is not the major football or tennis power. There is only one important tennis tournament that is held in Moscow - the Kremlin Cup, and the best football teams do not come to Moscow to play too often. Thus, if I want to see really good matches I shall either go abroad or watch TV. For example, in the summer of 2002 there was a World Football Championship that took place in Japan and Korea. Although it would have been nice to visit those countries, was the best possibility of seeing the strongest football teams play simply turning on the TV set.
– Do you play football or tennis yourself?
– Yes, I do, although not very often. Several years ago I used to do tennis. Once I was even thinking of pursuing a professional career, but now all that is in the past. I prefer watching others play tennis to playing myself. As for football, I have been a football fan from my childhood. My grandfather was the first to teach me to play football. Since then thousands of times I have played football with my friends and classmates. I think that the best time for playing football is early autumn and late spring. After classes my friends and I go to the playing ground, take a ball and we can really play for hours. In summer my friends are out of Moscow, while the Russian winter does not induce to playing football.
– Do you admire any athletes?
– Yes, I do. Eugeny Kafelnikov is my favourite tennis player. He is really good in tennis and ranks among the best tennis players of the world. Kafelnikov was the first Russian tennis player who managed to defeat the strongest Western athletes. I hope Eugeny will show excellent results for many years to come. I think that the example of Kafelnikov should inspire many young Russians to play tennis. As for football, I can not, unfortunately, say that there is a particular Russian player whom I admire. My favourite football player is Gabriel Batistuta. He is an Argentinean, but now he is playing in the Italian championship. He is a really gifted athlete, he loves football and makes thousands of fans adore him. At the same time he neither shows any pride nor demonstrates contempt for his fans. This is also very important. Batistuta serves me an example not only as a sportsman but as a personality too.
– Do you have any friends who go in for sports professionally?
– Yes, I do. I have one friend who is doing professional tennis. We started to play tennis together. While I quitted, he continued to pursue a sport career. He works very hard under the supervision of his coach. He takes part in various competitions. He tries to achieve good results, but sometimes they are not perfect. In either case he is pretty sure that one day he will become a good tennis player. His dream is to play with Kafelnikov. My other friends do not take sport seriously. Just for fun they play football or badminton, and I think that they are right. Sport is good while there is not too much of it.

18/4-2012 0:56


Kursorefka

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Days: 2739

Posts: 45

БИЛЕТ 17
Что означает «здоровый образ жизни»? А как ты заботишься о своем здоровье?
Keeping fit
The fitness boom of the past decades led to a big rise in the numbers of people participating in sports and activities. Those who pursue the latest fitness fashion are convinced that staying in good physical form requires much more than regular exercise and balanced meals. For anyone who really wants to be healthy, fitness has become an integral part of their lives. A lot of health and fitness clubs, and public leisure centres that were created in many countries indicate the popularity of sports during the past thirty years. These centres with their swimming pools, sunshine beach, water slides, and tropical plants and gyms are very popular among the people. Families can spend their holidays at huge indoor water parks. In such places everybody will have much fun.
There are many opportunities for keeping fit. First of all it is necessary to do exercises. People of different ages can design exercises that will fit them. Running, jumping, swimming, bending and stretching are among the most popular exercises. Many people prefer jogging, which is the cheapest and the most accessible sport. Walking is a very popular activity too. For example, popular running competitions are now held everywhere. Lots of people want to see if they can run faster than everyone else. The big city marathons have become sporting events. Television and newspapers report about them in detail. In order to keep fit some people do aerobics or yoga; others prefer some kind of weight training in a gym. People can easily learn more about fitness through popular books and videos that are sold almost everywhere. A healthy body becomes a fashion, an ideal of the life of today. Even moderate physical activity can protect against heart disease and strokes as well as improve general health and the quality of life. Everyone can benefit from being a little more active. Making small changes like using the stairs instead of the lift or walking or cycling instead of taking the bus can help people live a more active, healthier and enjoyable life. Many sports activities have become part of daily Russian life. Football has always been the most popular sport among boys. Playing football is healthy; football also brings people close because in order to win people have to work as a team. Bicycling is very popular in Russia. Skiing, skating, fishing and hunting are wide spread in our country. In summer many people like to go to the bank of the river on a hot day to swim. Another activity that is popular in our country is roller-skating. Today it has reached its peak in our country. At present the lack of facilities make enthusiasts use city pavements or parking lots.
Unfortunately, many people do not take enough exercise to keep themselves healthy. According to the statistics nowadays 60 percent of men and 91 percent of women are below activity levels necessary for a fit and healthy life. Many men and women are overweight.
– Why are people concerned with the healthy way of life nowadays?
– Everybody wants to live a long healthy life. Unfortunately, now it has become a dream. Because of the contaminated environment people suffer a lot of diseases. And the best way to be healthy is to do sports. Doing exercises is the best way to avoid depression caused by the abnormal rhythm of the contemporary city life.
– Do you do anything for keeping fit?
– I get up very early. Every morning I do my morning exercises. It takes me forty-five minutes to do them. Once a week I go to the swimming pool. On Sundays if the weather is fine I like to ride a bicycle in the park.
– Do you think that good appearance is the only motivation of being fit?
– Keeping fit is something that a person does alone. It is nice to look young and stay healthy as long as possible. Families can spend their free time jogging, walking, or swimming together. Some families like to get out of their city into the countryside. They can have much fun in the forests, or on the bank of a lake or a river. Just for fun they make boat trips or fish. Very often families spend their free time at huge indoor water parks, where they can play or relax. But this may not help them to get fitter. They simply enjoy being together.
– What may help people to get fitter?
– Taking exercise is only one part of keeping fit. It is important to get slim. Books and magazines about slimming are best sellers today. Some people eat nothing but fruit for several days. But it wont be of any use without proper exercises. Besides to avoid serious disease one should give up smoking. Efforts should be made to inform young people of the terrible consequences of taking up the habit. Smoking should be banned in all public places.

18/4-2012 0:56


Kursorefka

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Days: 2739

Posts: 45

БИЛЕТ 18
Проблемы экологии необычайно важны сегодня. Что ты и окружающие тебя люди могут сделать, чтобы защитить планету?
Environmental protection
Environmental protection is one of the main problems of today. Industrial civilisation is characterised by numerous factories and power stations, automobiles and aeroplanes. Technological progress improves peoples lives, but at the same time it causes numerous problems that were unimaginable in the past centuries. Through their daily activities people pollute and contaminate land, water and air. Today pollution has become a universal problem. Both the atmosphere of the Earth and the depths of the oceans are poisoned with toxic wastes created by the humans. Millions of species - animals, birds, fish have already disappeared from our planet; thousands of others will be gone tomorrow. Natural resources are exhausted; the ecology of the planet is disbalanced. The survival of our civilisation depends on the ability of mankind to find a way out. The task of protecting the nature is of primary importance now.
Big cities face the environmental catastrophe. Concentration of millions of people on a tiny area causes numerous problems. Some of them can be solved only at the expense of creating new ones. For example, air pollution is caused by the ever-increasing number of automobiles that help to cope with the transportation problem.
The need for energy generates pollution on a large scale. Energy that derives from fossil fuels contaminates the atmosphere. Nuclear power plants threaten air, water and land. The necessity to employ all the inhabitants of the city leads to the creation of new factories that produce not only consumer goods, but wastes and smog as well. Constant carbon dioxide emissions is a characteristic feature of big cities. Pollution of water by both industrial and domestic users creates the problem of water deficit. One form of pollution that is characteristic of large urban cities is noise that has destructive influence on a persons mind. Litter is another issue that people face in big cities. As a result of it big industrial centres today look more like garbage dumps.
It would be naive to think that the environmental problems are limited to big cities only. Our Earth is a living entity; land, air and water are inseparable. Water contaminated in big cities runs to the major rivers that then flow into oceans and seas, thus affecting places far from the point of origin. The atmosphere is in constant movement; the air polluted in the United States can travel the next day to Russia poisoning our people.
Another source of global danger is acid rain. It is a relatively new kind of pollution. Acid rains appeared as a reaction of the atmosphere to the air contamination. Acid rains damage water, forest, and soil resources. Acid rains cause the disappearance of fish from many lakes, bring death to the forests and woods in Europe and America. One more danger comes from the depletion of the ozone layer, which absorbs ultraviolet radiation from the Sun. If it continues it will damage all living organisms on our planet.
The only thing that people fail to realise is that humanity is also part of the biosphere and that people depend completely on the environment. The war on nature that mankind is waging today is a kind of collective suicide. People pollute the air that they breathe, poison the water that they drink. The most evident example of such suicidal tendencies is smoking. Smoking not only harms the health of the smoker, but also is destructive for others. That is why many countries passed laws to restrict smoking in public and at work.
Beginning with the 1960s the pollution problems have received great publicity. Recently the environmental movement has gained widespread support. Environmental activists, organisations of volunteers do their best to stop pollution of our planet. Due to such groups many laws aimed at environmental protection have been passed. Such laws as the Clean Air Act, Water Pollution Control Act, Endangered Species Act led to considerable specific improvements in the environment. Numerous chemicals, fertilisers and gases that were once used in agriculture and industry are banned today. Standards for food have become strict, because agricultural chemicals, used for growing crops, may poison people and end up in food and water supply. In many countries purifying systems for treatment of industrial waters have been installed, measures have been taken to protect rivers and seas from oil waters.
Greenpeace organisation was created in 1987. This organisation carries out numerous campaigns against the global environmental pollution. The protection of natural resources and wild animals is becoming a political programme in every country.
Public attention to the problem of pollution has now become part of the contemporary life. The solution of this global problem requires the co-operation of all nations. People also worry about the dangers resulting from massive releases of radioactive materials from nuclear weapons, which, if used on a major scale, could seriously endanger the humanity. Another concern is accidents at nuclear power plants. In 1978 a nuclear power plant in the United States suffered a severe accident leading to radioactive contamination of water and atmosphere. In 1986 the Chernobyl nuclear power plant near Kiev suffered a fire and a serious breakdown that led to a radioactive explosion. The contaminated air was soon carried to northern and eastern European countries that suffered radioactive rains.
To protect nature people should change their attitude to it. Man should stop taking from nature everything he needs and give it his love instead. Otherwise the price that mankind will have to pay will be too high. It is good that at last people started to realise that they should keep air and water clean by establishing strict pollution control. Efforts are made to reduce pollution from automobile engines by developing pollution-free engines, which may eventually eliminate the more serious air pollution problems. Certain countries have already agreed to limit their carbon dioxide emissions. Moreover, the strong public reaction can facilitate the exercise of absolute pollution control in various contamination industries.
– Why do some species of animals and plants disappear from the Earth?
– The disappearance of some species of animals and plants from the Earth is the result of the pollution of air, land and water. City and industrial waters, chemicals and fertilisers exhaust natural resources, endanger stocks of fish in the lakes, rivers and ponds. Moreover some animals were exterminated because of the peoples greediness. These animals were hunted for the sake of fur or ivory, horns or tusks. In their everyday activity people needed timber turning the areas of thick forests into barren deserts.
– What can you say about global warming?
– Over the past two decades, the temperature of the Earths atmosphere has gradually increased. Global warming is one of the climatic effects of polluted air. It worries a lot of people.
– What caused the «greenhouse effect»?
– The «greenhouse effect» is caused by carbon dioxide, which prevents heat from escaping. Global warming or the «greenhouse effect» can cause melting of the polar ice caps, raising of the sea level, and flooding of the coastal areas of the world. There is every reason to fear that such a climatic change may take place.
– Has anything been done to solve ecological problems?
– In recent years people have understood the necessity of protecting natural resources and wildlife. It becomes clear that to keep air and water clean, strict pollution control is necessary. Numerous anti-pollution acts passed in different countries led to considerable improvements. In many countries purifying systems for treatment of industrial waters have been installed, measures have been taken to protect rivers and seas from oil contamination. Reservations and national parks for wild animals and undisturbed nature are being developed in some parts of the world.
– What will happen if nothing is done to protect the environment?
– If pollution of land, water and air continues, the damage caused by these to nature may become irreversible. If people carry on like this, the world will eventually run out of energy, fresh air and clean water. It can bring to the extermination of the people and turning the whole planet into either a desert or the North Pole. Serious actions must be taken now to avoid disaster.

18/4-2012 0:57


Kursorefka

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Days: 2739

Posts: 45

БИЛЕТ 18
Проблемы экологии необычайно важны сегодня. Что ты и окружающие тебя люди могут сделать, чтобы защитить планету?
Environmental protection
Environmental protection is one of the main problems of today. Industrial civilisation is characterised by numerous factories and power stations, automobiles and aeroplanes. Technological progress improves peoples lives, but at the same time it causes numerous problems that were unimaginable in the past centuries. Through their daily activities people pollute and contaminate land, water and air. Today pollution has become a universal problem. Both the atmosphere of the Earth and the depths of the oceans are poisoned with toxic wastes created by the humans. Millions of species - animals, birds, fish have already disappeared from our planet; thousands of others will be gone tomorrow. Natural resources are exhausted; the ecology of the planet is disbalanced. The survival of our civilisation depends on the ability of mankind to find a way out. The task of protecting the nature is of primary importance now.
Big cities face the environmental catastrophe. Concentration of millions of people on a tiny area causes numerous problems. Some of them can be solved only at the expense of creating new ones. For example, air pollution is caused by the ever-increasing number of automobiles that help to cope with the transportation problem.
The need for energy generates pollution on a large scale. Energy that derives from fossil fuels contaminates the atmosphere. Nuclear power plants threaten air, water and land. The necessity to employ all the inhabitants of the city leads to the creation of new factories that produce not only consumer goods, but wastes and smog as well. Constant carbon dioxide emissions is a characteristic feature of big cities. Pollution of water by both industrial and domestic users creates the problem of water deficit. One form of pollution that is characteristic of large urban cities is noise that has destructive influence on a persons mind. Litter is another issue that people face in big cities. As a result of it big industrial centres today look more like garbage dumps.
It would be naive to think that the environmental problems are limited to big cities only. Our Earth is a living entity; land, air and water are inseparable. Water contaminated in big cities runs to the major rivers that then flow into oceans and seas, thus affecting places far from the point of origin. The atmosphere is in constant movement; the air polluted in the United States can travel the next day to Russia poisoning our people.
Another source of global danger is acid rain. It is a relatively new kind of pollution. Acid rains appeared as a reaction of the atmosphere to the air contamination. Acid rains damage water, forest, and soil resources. Acid rains cause the disappearance of fish from many lakes, bring death to the forests and woods in Europe and America. One more danger comes from the depletion of the ozone layer, which absorbs ultraviolet radiation from the Sun. If it continues it will damage all living organisms on our planet.
The only thing that people fail to realise is that humanity is also part of the biosphere and that people depend completely on the environment. The war on nature that mankind is waging today is a kind of collective suicide. People pollute the air that they breathe, poison the water that they drink. The most evident example of such suicidal tendencies is smoking. Smoking not only harms the health of the smoker, but also is destructive for others. That is why many countries passed laws to restrict smoking in public and at work.
Beginning with the 1960s the pollution problems have received great publicity. Recently the environmental movement has gained widespread support. Environmental activists, organisations of volunteers do their best to stop pollution of our planet. Due to such groups many laws aimed at environmental protection have been passed. Such laws as the Clean Air Act, Water Pollution Control Act, Endangered Species Act led to considerable specific improvements in the environment. Numerous chemicals, fertilisers and gases that were once used in agriculture and industry are banned today. Standards for food have become strict, because agricultural chemicals, used for growing crops, may poison people and end up in food and water supply. In many countries purifying systems for treatment of industrial waters have been installed, measures have been taken to protect rivers and seas from oil waters.
Greenpeace organisation was created in 1987. This organisation carries out numerous campaigns against the global environmental pollution. The protection of natural resources and wild animals is becoming a political programme in every country.
Public attention to the problem of pollution has now become part of the contemporary life. The solution of this global problem requires the co-operation of all nations. People also worry about the dangers resulting from massive releases of radioactive materials from nuclear weapons, which, if used on a major scale, could seriously endanger the humanity. Another concern is accidents at nuclear power plants. In 1978 a nuclear power plant in the United States suffered a severe accident leading to radioactive contamination of water and atmosphere. In 1986 the Chernobyl nuclear power plant near Kiev suffered a fire and a serious breakdown that led to a radioactive explosion. The contaminated air was soon carried to northern and eastern European countries that suffered radioactive rains.
To protect nature people should change their attitude to it. Man should stop taking from nature everything he needs and give it his love instead. Otherwise the price that mankind will have to pay will be too high. It is good that at last people started to realise that they should keep air and water clean by establishing strict pollution control. Efforts are made to reduce pollution from automobile engines by developing pollution-free engines, which may eventually eliminate the more serious air pollution problems. Certain countries have already agreed to limit their carbon dioxide emissions. Moreover, the strong public reaction can facilitate the exercise of absolute pollution control in various contamination industries.
– Why do some species of animals and plants disappear from the Earth?
– The disappearance of some species of animals and plants from the Earth is the result of the pollution of air, land and water. City and industrial waters, chemicals and fertilisers exhaust natural resources, endanger stocks of fish in the lakes, rivers and ponds. Moreover some animals were exterminated because of the peoples greediness. These animals were hunted for the sake of fur or ivory, horns or tusks. In their everyday activity people needed timber turning the areas of thick forests into barren deserts.
– What can you say about global warming?
– Over the past two decades, the temperature of the Earths atmosphere has gradually increased. Global warming is one of the climatic effects of polluted air. It worries a lot of people.
– What caused the «greenhouse effect»?
– The «greenhouse effect» is caused by carbon dioxide, which prevents heat from escaping. Global warming or the «greenhouse effect» can cause melting of the polar ice caps, raising of the sea level, and flooding of the coastal areas of the world. There is every reason to fear that such a climatic change may take place.
– Has anything been done to solve ecological problems?
– In recent years people have understood the necessity of protecting natural resources and wildlife. It becomes clear that to keep air and water clean, strict pollution control is necessary. Numerous anti-pollution acts passed in different countries led to considerable improvements. In many countries purifying systems for treatment of industrial waters have been installed, measures have been taken to protect rivers and seas from oil contamination. Reservations and national parks for wild animals and undisturbed nature are being developed in some parts of the world.
– What will happen if nothing is done to protect the environment?
– If pollution of land, water and air continues, the damage caused by these to nature may become irreversible. If people carry on like this, the world will eventually run out of energy, fresh air and clean water. It can bring to the extermination of the people and turning the whole planet into either a desert or the North Pole. Serious actions must be taken now to avoid disaster.

18/4-2012 0:57


Kursorefka

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Days: 2739

Posts: 45

БИЛЕТ 19
Когда человек взрослеет, у него могут появиться проблемы. А у тебя есть проблемы с друзьями, родителями или другими окружающими тебя людьми? Как ты справляешься с ними?
Problems of the youth
Youth is a very important period in the life of man. This is the time when a person discovers the world and tries to determine the place in the universe. Young people face lots of problems which are very important for them and do not differ much from those that once their parents had to deal with. At the same time every generation is unique. It differs from the one that preceded it in its experience, ideals and a system of values. The adults always say that the young are not what they were. These words are repeated from generation to generation. To some extent they are true, because every new generation grows up quicker, enjoys more freedom. It is better educated and benefits from the results of the technological progress of the time.
Young people of today do not directly accept the standards of their parents who believe that they are right because they are older. The adults dont want their values to be questioned. The young on the other hand can not accept the values of their «fathers». All these differences generate a generation gap when the young and adult do not understand one another. As a rule the adults, dissatisfied with their own lives, teach the young how to live. Unfortunately, the adults apply old standards to the new way of life. They can not leave behind their «good old days». This burden is very heavy. They think that the world is going down hill. They gloomily look ahead unable to understand the optimism of their children who want to pave their own way in life. The majority of the young people do not want to live in the past. They have their own ideals. They want to make their own mistakes rather than to listen to the warnings of the adults and repeat the mistakes of the older generation. They want to overcome their own difficulties without looking back. However, the life of the young is frequently determined by the adults. I think that parents will never understand their children. And children, in their turn, shock their parents with their dress, language, behaviour. The existence of sub-culture which is specific for every generation is a form of protest of the young people against the values of the adults. Thus, informal groups such as Hippies, Rockers, Bikers, Skinheads, Punks, Goths, Acid House appeared as a kind of protest against the values and lifestyles of the older people.
Traditionally, young people were looking at their elders for guidance. Today the situation is different. Sometimes the young people share information and experience with their parents. I think that it is not bad, especially when the adults really try to understand what is going on in the lives of their children. Moreover, young people grow up so quickly that they almost do not have time to enjoy their childhood.
Another problem that young people face today concerns their relationship with their friends. As far as friendship is concerned, I think that a person can and should have a lot of friends. Не/she can be on good terms with the classmates. But at the same time there can be only two or three real friends. I believe that real friends will never betray each other. They will always understand and help each other. I agree that tolerance is the pledge of friendship. It is wonderful if a school friend will remain your friend for the rest of your life. But in this case everything depends on the person.
The problem of love is very important for young people. Today they fall in love when they reach the age of Romeo and Juliet. Romanticism and idealism very often accompany the love of the young. They can love deeply and passionately, they believe that their love will last forever. Unfortunately, often their hearts are broken. Young people are not always ready to have stable relations. In many cases they are too young and inexperienced to begin a family life. They have to continue their education, while family obligations will force them to make money. At the same time without good education it is not easy to find a good job.
Communication has always been an important part of young peoples lives. Today they can choose between traditional and new ways of communication. Traditionally the young meet after classes with their school friends, make parties, go to the movies or disco clubs to have fun, relax and acquire new friends. But if the young people do not like noisy clubs and other places of entertainment, they can find friends without leaving their homes - the Internet gives such an opportunity. Although this international Web Wide Web is intended for getting knowledge, only few users employ it in this way. Others use different computer programmes to chat with their friends from all over the globe. They can sit for twenty four hours staring at the monitors. Such young people do not eat, sleep, work or learn properly. Their parents think that they are doing nothing, but this is not absolutely correct. They only thing many young people are interested in is navigating through the net and checking their e-mail boxes. And it is a great problem of the present and future. In general all the problems of the youth are linked with the present rather then with the past or future.
– Do your parents like music?
– Yes, they do. They like both classic and popular music. But my tastes differ from the preference of my parents. They prefer the music of their youth performed by Joe Cocker, the «Beatles» or something of that kind. They do not like chaos, rap or tech, which my generation chooses.
– Do you often quarrel with your parents?
– No, I prefer to settle all our problems peacefully. Sometimes the best tactics is not to contradict the parents while doing what I think is important. It is not always necessary that parents should know that I disagree with them. But very often my friends are unable to follow this pattern, especially those who hate compromises and do not like to make concessions to their parents.
– Do you think that a generation gap can be bridged?
– I doubt that a generation gap can ever be bridged. But I think that some concessions on both sides are possible. Sometimes older generations are important for young people because they can share their experience however irrelevant it may seem to the young. Parents are also providing their children with pocket money. That is why the young should not be too impatient when older people teach them what to do, what to wear or how to think. Tolerance is the only way to bridge the gap of the generations.
– Do you think that people can live without problems?
– Problem is the result of the activity of human mind. Only a simpleton can have no problems and be happy with everything. Nothing will come of nothing. Problems are inevitable when people do something. I think that without problems our life will be very boring. Moreover, when people start to cope with different problems they become stronger and more experienced. They harden like steel while overcoming problems. I do not think that life without problems will be better.

18/4-2012 0:58


Kursorefka

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Days: 2739

Posts: 45

БИЛЕТ 20
Изучение иностранных языков становится все более популярным в России. Почему люди в нашей стране изучают иностранные языки?
Learning languages
Language is the means of communication. The most common way of expressing an idea for people is to say it out loud. Language enables people to understand each other. At the same moment language can be a major barrier to understanding because there are thousands of different languages on our planet. From the earliest time, with the development of trade and exchange of ideas and techniques people saw the necessity of learning foreign languages. Egyptian pharaohs had scribes and interpreters at their disposal.
A language that is used as a means of communication by people of different nations is called international. International language helps people of different nations to understand each other. Different epochs had different international languages. As a rule the existence of the language as an international one is determined by political, cultural and economic development of the country which language is spoken as international.
International language is not the phenomenon of our age only. The first international language appeared on the Earth with the birth of civilisation. The Biblical myth about the mixture of languages during the construction of the Babylon Tower, when the people lost their universal language and thus could not communicate, was a reflection of how dearly the people of ancient periods held the gift of speech and understanding. Ever since those times the foreign languages and people who knew them played a significant part in the development of international relations and trade of different countries.
The first international language that we know about was the language of the Phoenicians. The Phoenicians were a nation of industrious merchants and brave seafarers who settled originally on the territory of the Lebanon. Their trading ships travelled across the Mediterranean, they often appeared in Egypt, Italy, and Greece, they voyaged across the Indian and Atlantic oceans. They were the first to round the Cape of Good Hope, the southernmost point of Africa. The Phoenicians were the first to create the alphabet, that later was borrowed by the Greeks. It is not surprising in this context that Phoenician was the international language for many centuries.
The Greek language replaced Phoenician as a means of international communication. After the military expeditions of Alexander of Macedonia the Greek language won recognition all over Asia. The Greek culture and language were imposed in all Hellenistic centres and states, including Egypt, Syria and Persia. The Romans went a little further. The Roman legionary marched to the ends of the earth carrying Latin, their language, with the help of their orators and philosophers to Europe, Asia, and Africa. From that time on the role of languages in the historical development of humanity has increased. Latin survived the collapse of the Roman Empire. Until the establishment of national states, new national languages that originated from Latin (French, Spanish, and Italian) were still emerging. In such circumstances although the native speakers of Latin were gone, it was a universal language of Mediaeval Europe for fifteen centuries. In Europe Latin was used for the serious business of government, diplomacy, and philosophy. A person who did not know Latin was unable to become educated because Latin was also the language of the Universities. In the Middle Ages students and professors travelled from one country to another, from one University to another, and nowhere they had any difficulties in understanding their colleagues and friends as all lectures were delivered in Latin.
Then with the emergence of national states and development of national languages the need to learn foreign languages became especially acute. Besides classical languages modern languages were introduced in the list of school studies. Educated people of Europe were to know several modern languages. For example, Rubens, the greatest painter of the Western civilisation who lived in Flanders in the 17-th century, spoke and wrote six modern languages.
It should be said that not all the languages had equal importance in different centuries in the world. Preference was given to that one which country was more powerful at that time. In the 15-th and 16-th centuries Spain was in the vanguard of European and world expansion and the Spanish language could be heard in the far reaches of our planet. French became the dominant language of the Western world in the 17-th and 19-th centuries. In the 19-th century French was the official language of our country. Since childhood Russian aristocrats were learning French. For example, Pushkin wrote his first poem in French. Russian was spoken only by common people.
In the first half of the 20-th century, during the period between two World Wars, English started gradually to replace French as the international language. Moreover, in the second half of the 20-th century the United States became the worlds dominant power. The USA had enormous political, economic and cultural influence on the Western world.
It is interesting to note that before English emerged from lots of dialects, French had been the language of the English court and of the educated classes for three centuries since the Norman conquest. It was Chaucer who chose English for his book «Canterbury Tales» and thereby helped decide the language in which Englands literature would be written in centuries to come. In the 16-th century Shakespeare used over 29,000 English words, many invented by himself. Germanic in origin English has words come from other sources, the result is an astonishingly wide vocabulary acquired quite early in its history. Now English is the language of unparalleled richness, subtlety and variety, which unlocks the treasures of the literature second to none in the world.
The transition from French to English as the international language was relatively easy because in many countries of the world people already knew English by that time. The British Empire brought English not only in the North America, but in the Australia, Africa, and India as well. The leadership of English in the modern world can be explained by numerous factors. Over 300 million people who live in Great Britain, Australia, New Zealand and the United States of America speak English is as a native tongue. English is one of the official languages in the Irish Republic, Canada, the South African Republic. It is also the second official language used in the former British and U.S. colonies. English is one of the official languages of the United Nations Organisation and other political organisations. It is the language of literature, education, modern music, international tourism.
The dominance of English in the contemporary world is explained by the appearance of lots of people who want to learn English not for pleasure or prestige but because English has become the key to international scientific, technological and commercial innovations of today.
Previously the reason for learning any foreign language was not well defined. Knowledge of foreign languages was regarded as a sign of a well-rounded education, but few had really questioned why it was necessary. The problem of learning languages is very important today, Foreign languages are socially demanded especially at the present time when the progress in science and technology has led to an explosion of knowledge. The total knowledge of mankind doubles every seven years. English is needed as the main and the most efficient means of information exchange. With the acceptance of English as the international language of technology and commerce appears a new generation of people who know why they are learning the language. Scientists and scholars need it to keep up with developments in their fields. Many students need English because their course of studies includes textbooks avail able only in English. Young people around the world need English in order to be able to use the Internet, communicate with their partners in other countries, understand films and songs.
Unfortunately, there is no universal or ideal method of learning languages. Everybody has his own way. Sometimes it is boring to study grammar or learn new words. But it is well known that reading books in the original, listening to the BBC news, communicating with native speakers will help a lot. When learning a foreign language one learns the culture and history of the native speakers. One must work hard to learn any foreign language.
– When do children start learning foreign languages in Russia?
– Much depends on the parents. Some children start to learn foreign languages very early, in kindergartens for example. They are taught ABC English there: they sing songs, recite nursery rhymes and learn to construct some phrases. Others start learning languages at school. At some specialised schools foreign languages are taught from the second to the eleventh class. But generally pupils learn foreign languages from the fifth to the eleventh class.
– Are foreign languages included in entrance exams?
– Many Universities include foreign languages in entrance exams. Students who specialise in humanities, such as History, Sociology, and Philosophy need to know foreign languages for their professional career.
– Why do people learn foreign languages in Russia?
– Russia is integrating into the world community and the problem of learning English for the purpose of communication is especially urgent today. In Russia people learn English to be able to exchange the latest information concerning science, technology and commerce with their colleagues; to be able to read foreign newspapers and books. Learning foreign languages is especially popular among young people. For them English is a way of exploring a completely new world. A person who travels a lot also needs English. Even in the countries where English is not an official language people will generally be able to understand it.
– In how many countries is English the official language?
– English is the official language of some thirty states which represent different cultures. Many countries, which have more than one official language have English among other official languages.
– What is a distinguishing feature of English?
– English belongs to a group of Germanic languages. Thus German is relatively close to English. At the same time England had numerous contacts with France, so French had tremendous influence on English. Today a person who knows both English and French will easily find numerous similarities in these languages. Those who already know English will have less difficulties learning French.
– Is English an easy language to learn?
– Yes, it is. Basically English is an easier language to learn than almost any other language. Its grammar is not difficult at all.
– What do you think is the most difficult about English?
– The richness of the vocabulary makes English a difficult language. Moreover, spelling and pronunciation make trouble. An other thing is that Russian and English are very different. It is not easy for a Russian to learn how to use definite and indefinite articles properly because there are no articles in Russian. In this context it should be said that the Germans and the French have less difficulties with English.
– Why are foreign languages important for specialists?
– Specialist should know foreign languages to communicate with their colleagues at the conferences, through books and journals or the Internet. Today it is not enough for a professional to know only one foreign language. That is why many young people who begin to think about their future early start learning several languages. For Russian specialists it is good to know not only English, but German and French as well. Undoubtedly, English is number one language that specialists should learn.
– What kind of foreign language do specialists have to know?
– Specialists have to know that kind of English which will help them to solve their professional problems. They need English for specific purposes. It has been established that there are important differences between, say, the English of commerce and that of engineering. That is why a great deal of English courses for specific groups of learners have been developed. The discovery that language varies from one situation of use to another allowed to determine the features of the specific situations making them the basis of the learners course. Today specialist of different branches of sciences and professionals can learn English for their specific purposes. Nowadays there are English courses for Biology, Geography, Law, History, Mathematics, Medicine, Economy, and other sciences.

18/4-2012 0:58


Alex Filonov

Days: 1695

Posts: 6

--- Начало цитаты Kursorefka:
Говорят, что школьные годы - самая счастливая пора. А ты можешь сказать, что ты был счастлив в школе? Почему?
--- Конец цитаты.
Не знаю, я вот не могу сказать, что мои школьные годы - это самая счастливая пора. Студенческие годы мне больше нравятся, свободы гораздо больше чем в школе.

26/2-2015 13:26

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