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A Mark Training Co.
IELTS Speaking
A Mark Training Co.
Module #1:  Just Start
Module #1:
Aly Bardai
Just Start
Live Class
Train
Module #1 PFT Assessment Sheet
Students
1. Complete and submit Lessons 1a to 1e, study your feedback and organize your thoughts towards the training session. This is not optional. It is necessary.

2. Fill out and bring a copy of the PFT Assessment Sheet before you come to class (review your feedack page to help you remember which reps, checkpoints and assessments you would like your teacher to help you with).

3. Arrive for your live class on time.

4. Take your live class following the A Mark 30 Live Class model below.

5. Thank the proprietor or support the cafe for the use of their space, which will improve the atmosphere of your classes there.

For Teachers
1. Fill out and bring a copy of the PFT Assessment Sheet before you come to class (find information about your student on their feedback page that you access from your class list).

2. Study your teacher notes paying special attention to the reps, checkpoints and assessment tasks that your student has requested a focus on.

3. Make a decision about the best way to help your student during your own preparation.

4. Your student expects you to follow the A Mark 30 Live Class model below.

5. Thank the proprietor or support the cafe for the use of a table in their place of business, which is their livelihood.

A Mark 30 Live Class
Rep #1: Yes/No Questions (1)
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1a:  Yes/No Questions (1)
1a:
Yes/No Questions (1)
In this lesson, you encounter a few natural and meaningful ways to provide alternative expressions to simple "Yes" or "No" responses in the first part of the speaking test.

A: Do you enjoy going to the beach?
B: _____________
A: Why not?
B: I think I would have to say the reason is that I...well I really don't like sand very much.

Rep #1. Choose the most appropriate expression from the list below.
A. Absolutely!
B. For sure yeah!
C. No I can't say that I do.
Rep #4: Yes/No Questions (2)
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1b:  Yes/No Questions (1)
1b:
Yes/No Questions (2)
In this lesson, you observe a few different ways to answer simple Yes/No questions without hesitating, which contributes to fluency.

A: Have you ever been to a really hot country?
B: __________________
A: Why?
B: I suppose it's because I live up here in Canada and I just haven't had enough money to fly anywhere warm. I'm a student, so there are a lot of student loans to pay back.

Rep #4. Choose the most appropriate expression from the list below.
A. No I can't say that I do.
B. I haven't unfortunately.
C. I don't unfortunately.
Rep #7: Giving Reasons (1)
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1b:  Yes/No Questions (1)
1c:
Giving Reasons (1)
In this lesson, you meet several alternative ways to express a reason instead of using the simple "Because" to start a sentence, which can help show more grammatical range.

A: Do you like to watch live performances?
B: I don't unfortunately.
A: Why not?
B: I think it's due to the fact that ___________.

Rep #7. Choose an appropriate ending for the reason. Pay attention to the form.
A. I get bored easily.
B. I getting bored easily.
C. I got bored easily.
Rep #10: Giving Reasons (2)
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1d:  Giving Reasons (2)
1d:
Giving Reasons (2)
In this lesson, you are encouraged to memorize alternative set expressions to the simple "Because" to convey a reason, which helps to reduce hesitation when responding during the first part of the speaking test.

A: Do you enjoy playing sports?
B: Absolutely!
A: Why?
B: _____________ my dad loved sports when I was younger...so like father like son I guess.

Rep #10. Choose a response for the beginning of the reason that you might use during your training session.

A. I guess because
B. I am guessing it's because
C. I guess it's because
Rep #13: Making Lists
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1e:  Making Lists
1e:
Making Lists
In this lesson, you see and hear short interviews in which the speakers used discourse markers to connect two reasons in a list, which contributes to fluency and coherence.

A: Why is it important for children to play outside?
B: A couple of reasons. A because they need to get some exercise and B because they can make friends with other children, which is really important.

Rep #13. Which words are louder and stronger in the underlined part of the example conversation?
A. because, because
B. A, B
C. they, they
Checkpoint #2: Yes/No Questions
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Do you enjoy cooking? [Why/Why not?]
Do you like driving? [Why/Why not?]
Do you enjoy reading? [Why/Why not?]
Do you like travelling? [Why/Why not?]
Do you like watching TV? [Why/Why not?]
Do you like visiting amusement parks? [Why/Why not?]

Checkpoint #5: Yes/No Questions (2)
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Do you enjoy dancing? [Why/Why not?]
Do you like swimming in the ocean? [Why/Why not?]
Do you listen to the radio? [Why/Why not?]
Have you ever sailed in a ship? [Why/Why not?]
Have you ever travelled alone? [Why/Why not?]
Have you ever had a job? [Why/Why not?]

Checkpoint #8: Giving Reasons (1)
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Do you enjoy riding a bicycle? [Why/Why not?]
Do you like reading books? [Why/Why not?]
Do you like to wear a watch? [Why/Why not?]
Is the internet very important to you? [Why/Why not?]
Do you study another language? [Why/Why not?]
Do you think people will still write letters in the future? [Why/Why not?]

Checkpoint #11: Giving Reasons (2)
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Do you like going for long walks? [Why/Why not?]
Do you like watching the commercials on television? [Why/Why not?]
Do you like using the internet? [Why/Why not?]
Why do you like or dislike travelling?
Why do you like or dislike watching TV?
Why do you like or dislike visiting gardens?

Checkpoint #14
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Why do you think everybody should do some kind of exercise?
What do you like about eating in restaurants? [Why/Why not?]
Why do you think your neighborhood is a good place to live?
Why are colors important to some people when they buy clothes?
Why are names so important to some people?
Why is important for children to have toys?

Assessment #3: Yes/No Questions (1)
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Maintain your focus (Assessment #3 Notes)
In this lesson, you watched parts of three interviews with sample questions from Part 1 of the speaking module. Did you notice that the extra notes after each short interview contained a guide for how to further prepare for your training session?

There are 6 sets of assessment tasks below. Choose one that you like and read the extra notes carefully in preparation for your training session. Your teacher may or may not select this task, but if he or she does, you will be ready. Remember, it is better to be prepared for an opportunity that doesn't happen than to be unprepared for one that arises.

It is important for you as a student to maintain your focus during the training session. In my experience, many students do not progress because they get distracted by thoughts and ideas which are not related to the task. Focus on the objective of each assessment task (to receive green flag feedback from your teacher), and you will be on your way to success.

#3i. Cooking (Part 1)

  • Do you like cooking? [Why/Why not?]
  • How often do you cook? [Why/Why not?]
  • How important is it for a person to learn how to cook? [Why?]
  • Do you ever cook for other people? [Why/Why not?]

#3ii. Driving (Part 1)

  • Is driving a car popular in your country? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you like driving? [Why/Why not?]
  • When was the last time you drove a car? [Why?]
  • Do you prefer driving or being a passenger in the car? [Why?]

#3iii. Reading (Part 1)

  • Do you like reading? [Why/Why not?]
  • What kind of books did you read when you were younger? [Why?]
  • How often do you read books nowadays? [Why?]
  • Do you think reading a good for learning a language? [Why/Why not?]

#3iv. Travelling (Part 1)

  • Do you like travelling? [Why/Why not?]
  • When was the last time you went travelling? [Where?]
  • Is it common for young people to travel in your country?
  • Do you prefer travelling alone or with a friend? [Why?]

#3v. Television (Part 1)

  • Is watching television popular among young people in your country? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you like watching television? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you like to watch television commercials? [Why/Why not?]
  • What kind of televisions shows do you like/dislike? [Why?]

#3vi. Amusement Parks (Part 1)

  • Do you like visiting amusement parks? [Why/Why not?]
  • What do you like/dislike about amusement parks? [Why?]
  • Are amusement parks popular in your country? [Why/Why not?]
  • When was the last time you went to an amusement park? [Why?]
Assessment #3 Feedback Comments

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Assessment #6: Yes/No Questions (2)
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Beware of overambition (Assessment #6 Notes)

You don't have to always use the same simple expressions to answer yes/no questions on the test. In fact, it will be to your advantage to include a range of expressions in your set of responses. However, you only saw three possibilities in this lesson. There are so many more depending on the context and the situation.

Having said that, it is important for you to approach the training session with patience in your ability to learn whatever you want to learn and practice whatever you want to practice. Choose an assessment task that you have some genuine interest in if this is your first time taking this live class.

If you follow the green flag path and aim to receive green flag feedback on the assessment task, you will have confidence in the language that you have used for the task. Being overly ambitious can distract you from reaching this objective in an efficient manner.

#6i. Dancing (Part 1)

  • Do you like dancing? [Why/Why not?]
  • Is dancing popular among young people in your country?
  • Do you think dancing is a good skill for young people to learn? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you prefer dancing or watching other people dance?

#6ii. The ocean (Part 1)

  • Do you live near the ocean?
  • Is the ocean a popular place to visit in your country? [Why/Why not?]
  • Have you ever sailed in a boat on the ocean? [When?]
  • Do you like swimming in the ocean? [Why/Why not?]

#6iii. The radio (Part 1)

  • Is listening to the radio common in your country? [Why do you think so?]
  • Do you listen to the radio? [Why/Why not?]
  • How often do you listen to the radio? [Why/Why not?]
  • What kind of radio stations do you listen to? [Why/Why not?]

#6iv. Sailing (Part 1)

  • Have you ever sailed in a ship? [Why/Why not?]
  • What do/would you like or dislike about sailing in a ship? [Why?]
  • Do you think sailing in a ship is safe? [Why/Why not?]
  • Would you like to sail in a ship in the future? [Why/Why not?]

#6v. Travelling (Part 1)

  • Do you like travelling? [Why/Why not?]
  • Is travelling popular in your country? [Why? Why not?]
  • Have you ever travelled alone? [Why/Why not?]
  • When was the last time you travelled to another country?

#6vi. Jobs (Part 1)

  • Have you ever had a job? [Why/Why not?]
  • Is it common for young people to have jobs in your country? [Why/Why not?]
  • What kind of job would you like to have in the future?
  • Do you prefer working with people or working alone? [Why?]
Assessment #6 Feedback Comments

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Assessment #9: Giving Reasons (1)
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Impatience hinders progress (Assessment #9 Notes)
One of the most common questions in any language is "Why?", and this question does not come without a host of ways to express a reason. The language presented in this lesson represents only a tiny number of structures that you might use at the beginning of a sentence to convey a reason, and I feel it is a good starting place.

Don't worry too much about how much time it takes you to get something right during the training session. Your teacher should be professionally trained to manage the time for you and select tasks that he or she feels will benefit you in the moment. This is part of the job of a teacher in the live class.

Impatience is one of the most negative qualities for a student to have. Just because you don't get a green flag on the first time you try a task, it doesn't mean that that you will never get it. Trust that your memory is good enough to remember the new language and produce it in a meaningful situation next time. Trust the process and you will be fine.

#9i. Riding a bicycle (Part 1)

  • Is riding a bicycle popular in your country? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you enjoy riding a bicycle? [Why/Why not?]
  • When was the last time you rode a bicycle? [Why?]
  • Do you think that learning to ride a bicycle is important for young people? [Why/Why not?]

#9ii. Reading books (Part 1)

  • Is reading popular among young people in your country? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you like reading books? [Why/Why not?]
  • What kind of books do you dislike reading? [Why?]
  • When was the last time you read a book?

#9iii. Wearing a watch (Part 1)

  • Is it common for people to wear a watch in your country?
  • Why do you think some people like to wear a watch?
  • Do you like wearing a watch? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you think wearing a watch will be common in the future? [Why/Why not?]

#9iv. The internet (Part 1)

  • Is the internet very important to you? [Why/Why not?]
  • When did you first learn to use the internet? [Why?]
  • Do you think the internet is dangerous? [Why/Why not?]
  • When was the last time you accessed the internet?
  • [Why?]

#9v. Other languages (Part 1)

  • Do you study another language? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you think it is important for young people to learn another language? [Why/Why not?]
  • What is the best way to learn a language?
  • Do you need to know another language for the job you would like to do in the future? [Why/Why not?]

#9vi. Writing Letters (Part 1)

  • How often do you write letters? [Why/Why not?]
  • When do people write letters in your country?
  • Do you think people will still write letters in the future? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you prefer writing letters or sending emails? [Why?]
Assessment #9 Feedback Comments

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Assessment #12: Giving Reasons (2)
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Have confidence (Assessment #12 Notes)
Even if your teacher assigns a green flag to your preparation lesson, it is worth it for you to go back and review the interviews and explanations in this lesson before going to your live class. You may hear something new in terms of vocabulary or pronunciation that escaped your notice the first time around.

After you select an assessment task, take a few minutes to visualize and imagine your teacher asking you the questions during your training session. Imagine yourself giving your answer the way that you feel it should be given with confidence and with all your feeling and personality attached to it.

Learning a language and getting a high score on the speaking test is not easy. If it was easy, I wouldn't have a job. However, it has been done by many people before you. As a result, you know it is possible. Have confidence in yourself.

#12i. Walking (Part 1)

  • Is going for a walk a popular leisure activity in your country? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you like going for long walks? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you think walking is a good way to keep fit? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you prefer walking alone or walking with a friend? [Why?]

#12ii. Commercials (Part 1)

  • Are television commercials popular in your country? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you like watching the commercials on television? [Why/Why not?]
  • What kind of television commercials do you like? [Why/Why not?]
  • What kind of television commercials do you dislike? [Why/Why not?]

#12iii. The internet (Part 1)

  • Do you like using the internet? [Why/Why not?]
  • What do you mainly use the internet for? [Why?]
  • How did you learn to use the internet?
  • How often do you use the internet?

#12iv. Travelling (Part 1)

  • Why do you like or dislike travelling?
  • Have you ever travelled alone?
  • Is travelling popular among university students in your country? [Why/Why not?]
  • Where would you like to travel in the future? [Why/Why not?]

#12v. Television (Part 1)

  • Why do you like or dislike watching TV?
  • How often do you watch TV? [Why/Why?]
  • When was the last time you watched TV? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you prefer watching TV alone or with a friend? [Why/Why not?]

#12vi. Gardens (Part 1)

  • Are public gardens a popular place to visit in your country? [Why/Why not?]
  • Why do you like or dislike visiting gardens?
  • When was the last time you visited a garden? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you prefer visiting a garden or a park? [Why?]
Assessment #12 Feedback Comments

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Assessment #15: Making Lists
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Trust your teacher (Assessment #15)
It is probable that you will receive more than one "Why?" question during your speaking test. In this lesson, you encountered some language to use when you want to give more than one reason.

Think about this when you select an assessment task. Your teacher will ask you the questions with the same intensity as an interviewer would ask you on your test day. Afterwards, your teacher may choose to give you some immediate feedback from the training session comments at the end of this lesson.

It is important to trust your teacher. The purpose of feedback is to help you improve. Your teacher's intention is not to make you feel bad or stupid. It is not useful for you to challenge your teacher in the middle of the training session. Instead, focus on the feedback that you receive, eat the fish and spit out the bones. If you pay me for my advice, this is what I would say to you.

#15i. Exercise (Part 1)

  • How often do you exercise? [Why/Why not?]
  • Do you prefer to exercise in the morning or in the evening? [Why/Why not?]
  • Why do you think everybody should do some kind of exercise?
  • What kind of exercise is popular in your country? [Why?]

#15ii. Restaurants (Part 1)

  • How often do you eat in restaurants? [Why/Why not?]
  • When was the last time you went to a restaurant? [Why/Why not?]
  • What do you like about eating in restaurants?
  • Do you ever order take out food from restaurants? [Why/Why not?]

#15iii. Your neighborhood (Part 1)

  • Tell me about the area where you are living now.
  • Why do you think your neighborhood is a good place to live?
  • What kind of neighborhood did you grow up in?
  • Were there are a lot of facilities in the neighborhood you grew up in?

#15iv. Colors (Part 1)

  • What's your favorite color? [Why?]
  • Do you like to wear colorful clothes? [Why/Why not?]
  • Why are colors important to some people when they buy clothes?
  • What color do you dislike the most? [Why?]

#15v. Names and People (Part 1)

  • Are you good at remembering names?
  • Do you call someone by their first name or last name in your country? [Why?]
  • Why are names so important to some people?
  • Why do you think some people have nicknames?

#15vi. Children and Toys (Part 1)

  • Did you have a lot of toys when you were younger?
  • What was your favorite toy as a child? [Why?]
  • Why is important for children to have toys?
  • How often do you go shopping for toys? [Why/Why not?]
Assessment #15 Feedback Comments

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1a
Yes/No Questions (1)
1b
Yes/No Questions (2)
1c
Giving Reasons (1)
1d
Giving Reasons (2)
1e
Making Lists
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