IELTS | Speaking | 1 on 1 Coaching | Speaking Part 1 – Talking About Your Hometown

HAPPY THANKSGIVING, EVERYONE! Yes, we’re going through this, all the way through the holiday season. In today’s podcast, special shoutout to my Indian content writer who had achieved a massive IELTS band and passed with flying colors. So grateful to have coached her through this process. So, in saying that, let’s hear how she structures her speaking parts!

Podcast

IELTS | Writing task II | Opinion Essay | Hypothesizing

Welcome back to another IELTS Writing Task video, and today I’m going to be focusing, again, on opinion essays. Because I have a student on my Patreon who I’m coaching, I decided to do something that pertains to who’s on my membership. So, let’s go over different types of linking devices and an opinion essay that scored an overall 7.0 band.

Technique: use linking phrases like “if” and “unless” in your answers in order to hypothesize about effects.

Additional words: if, providing, provided, as long as and unless can all be used to hypothesize.

Example: A nation should nurture the talents of its people. It will then reap many benefits.

If a nation nurtures the talents of its people, it will reap many benefits.

a. Without being encouraged by parents and teachers, aspiring musicians will not develop.

Unless ______________________________________________.

b. Science may one day stop the aging process in humans, but will this benefit mankind?

If _________________________________________________.

c. If there is no effort made to keep traditional farming methods alive, they will disappear.

Unless ______________________________________________.

d. If innovation is encouraged, many new jobs will be created.

As long as ____________________________________________.

Complete the following sentences using your own ideas.

a. Provided parents have an interest in music, _______________.

b. If government support for arts projects is not available, ____________.

c. Unless entrance to museums and art galleries is free,_______________.

d. Providing young scientists are given the right opportunities,______________

Task: The money spent on space research has brought enormous benefits to mankind, but it could be more usefully applied. To what extent do you agree or disagree?

The question of whether money could be usefully applied to tackle the crisis around the world rather than spent in on space research is a very controversial issue and it is now a matter of considerable public concern. There are, therefore, people on both sides of the argument who have feelings either for or against.

Many people believe that money should be spent to solve food crisis in Africa and South Asia. Droughts, for example, left Africa with famine. Every 30 seconds an African child dies of hunger and about 45% of children in South Asia suffer from malnutrition. Similarly, the global issue is the conflict of AIDS in Africa. Although, there are numerous factors in the spread of HIV/AIDS, it is largely recognized as a disease of poverty. Medicines, for instance, are very expensive and the government in poor countries can not afford to treat the disease, therefore millions are dying, while in rich countries people are living longer.

Having said that, however, some people oppose the former argument. They claim that space research has brought enormous benefits to mankind. Recently, NASA has launched satellites for weather and climate, which will give the scientists a unique view of earth’s atmosphere, helping them to improve their abilities to forecast weather and predict climate change.

From what has been discussed above we may draw the conclusion that both points of view have their merits. Although, human life has priority in our societies, advanced research should be carried out to find another source of energy, water on other planet, and to understand the planets and its’ effect on earth for the benefit of all.

IELTS | Speaking | 1 on 1 Coaching | Speaking Part 1 – Neighbors

We’ve got ourselves an AMAZING speaking student on the podcast today from India! She’s a professional and taking IELTS general training, and as you may hear in this podcast, her speaking capabilities and flow with pronunciation is beyond solid.  However, it’s time to critique! In today’s podcast, we’re talking NEIGHBORS!

IELTS | Reading | Cambridge 14 | T4 – P1 – The Secret of Staying Young

Welcome back to a breakdown of reading passage 1 on the Cambridge IELTS test 4! This is a first of its kind, and what I’ll be doing is breaking down T/F/NG and fill in the blank. The most difficult part about IELTS reading is finding where the key words are (far more difficult than TOEFL)….so watch how I do this.

Pheidole dentata, a native ant of the south-eastern U.S., isn’t immortal. But scientists have found that it doesn’t seem to show any signs of aging. Old worker ants can do everything just as well as the youngsters, and their brains appear just as sharp. ‘We get a picture that these ants really don’t decline,’ says Ysabel Giraldo, who studied the ants for her doctoral thesis at Boston University.

Such age-defying feats are rare in the animal kingdom. Naked mole rats can live for almost 30 years and stay fit for nearly their entire lives. They can still reproduce even when old, and they never get cancer. But the vast majority of animals deteriorate with age just like people do. Like the naked mole rat, ants are social creatures that usually live in highly organized colonies. ‘It’s this social complexity that makes P. dentata useful for studying aging in people,’ says Giraldo, now at the California Institute of Technology. Humans are also highly social, a train that has been connected to healthier aging. By contrast, most animal studies of aging use mice, worms or fruit flies, which all lead much more isolated lives.

In the lab, P. dentata worker ants typically live for around 140 days. Giraldo focused on ants at four age ranges: 20 to 22 days, 45 to 47 days, 95 to 97 days and 120 to 122 days. Unlike all previous studies, which only estimated how old the ants were, her work tracked the ants from the time the pupae became adults, so she knew their exact ages. Then she put them through a range of tests.

Giraldo watched how well the ants took care of the young of the colony, recording how often each ant attended to, carried and fed them. She compared how well 20-day-old and 95-day-old ants followed the telltale scent that the insects usually leave to mark a trail to food. She tested how ants responded to light and also measured how active they were by counting how often ants in a small dish walked across a line. And she experimented with how ants react to live prey: a tethered fruit fly. Giraldo expected the older ants to perform poorly in all these tasks. But the elderly insects were all good caretakers and trail-followers — the 95-day-old ants could track the scent even longer than their younger counterparts. They all responded to light well, and the older ants were more active. And when it came to reacting to prey, the older ants attacked the poor fruit fly just as aggressively as the young ones did, flaring their mandibles or pulling at the fly’s legs.

Then Giraldo compared the brains of 20-day-old and 95-day old ants, identifying any cells that were close to death. She saw no major differences with age, nor was there any difference in the location of the dying cells, showing that age didn’t seem to affect specific brain functions. Ants and other insects have structures in their brains called mushroom bodies, which are important for processing information, learning and memory. She also wanted to see if aging affects the density of synaptic complexes within these structures — regions where neurons come together. Again, the answer was no. What was more, the old ants didn’t experience any drop in the levels of either serotonin or dopamine — brain chemicals whose decline often coincides with aging. In humans, for example, a decrease in serotonin has been linked to Alzheimer’s disease.

‘This is the first time anyone has looked at both behavioral and neural changes in these ants so thoroughly,’ says Giraldo, who recently published the findings in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B. Scientists have looked at some similar aspects in bees, but the results of recent bee studies were mixed — some studies showed age-related declines, which biologists call senescence, and others didn’t. ‘For now, the study raises more questions than it answers,’ Giraldo says, ‘including how P. dentat stays in such good shape.’

Also, if the ants don’t deteriorate with age, why do they die at all? Out in the wild, the ants probably don’t live for a full 140 days thanks to predators, disease and just being in an environment that’s much harsher than the comforts of the lab. ‘The lucky ants that do live into old age may suffer a steep decline just before dying,’ Giraldo says, but she can’t say for sure because her study wasn’t designed to follow an ant’s final moments.

‘It will be important to extend these findings to other species of social insects,’ says Gene E. Robinson, an entomologist at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. This ant might be unique, or it might represent a broader pattern among other social bugs with possible clues to the science of aging in larger animals. Either way, it seems that for these ants, age really doesn’t matter.

Cambridge IELTS 14 Test 4 Passage 1

Choose one word only from the passage for each answer.

Focus on a total of 1 ___________ different age groups of ants, analysing

Behaviour:

– how well ants looked after their 2 ______________

– their ability to locate 3 ____________ using a scent trail

– the effect that 4 _____________ had on them

– how 5 ______________ they attacked prey

Brains:

– comparison between age and the 6 _____________ of dying cells in the brains of ants

– condition of synaptic complexes (areas in which 7 _____________ meet) in the brain’s ‘mushroom bodies’

– level of two 8 ______________ in the brain associated with ageing

Questions 1-8

Second phase

  • True: if the statement agrees with the information
  • False: if the statement contradicts the information
  • NG: If there is no information on this

9. Pheidole dentata ants are the only known animals which remain active for their whole lives.

10. Ysabel Giraldo was the first person to study Pheidole dentata ants using precise data about the insects’ ages.

11. The ants in Giraldo’s experiments behaved as she had predicted that they would.

12. The recent studies of bees used different methods of measuring age-related decline.

13. Pheidole dentata ants kept in laboratory conditions tend to live longer lives.

Tips & Tricks

  • If the question asks you to write two words and/or a number, this means the answer may be: one word, one word + a number, two words, two words + a number

Remember that even if a number is written as a word, it counts as a number (e.g., twenty five trees = one word and a number). You do not need to write full sentences or join words together.

Podcast

How I created a skillset before covid19 shattered jobs

The language school where I have been teaching since May last year had to close on the 18th March. I am owed three weeks pay, which should have arrived by 11th April at the latest. There are 8 other teachers in the same boat and we have all been unable to contact the owner. He isn’t answering his phone, e-mails or Line messages (but the messages are being read) I need my money!

Anonymous Teacher in Thailand

I’m fortunate enough to have built up my skillsets over the course of 5 years. However, the comment above, which I found on a website, shows a plead from an individual who works at a language center (like me) that sadly fell into the grim reality of a corrupted owner. He was supposed to get paid but the owner has literally went AWOL, or so it seems (because line messages are being read). I have empathy for these teachers, including the rest around the world, who have had their jobs completely slashed away. 36 million English speakers in America have lost their jobs and that toll will continue climbing because the spread of the virus will amplify.

In the past here in Thailand, there have been floods that wiped up a large portion of the country, inundating homes and districts for up to a half-a-year, coups that ran rampantly on the streets of Thailand, disrupting an entire nation. Riots between two political parties that saw dozens of lives lost, but this certainly trumps them all, doesn’t it?

The company that hires and sends us to teach in Thai public schools refuses to tell the teachers when our contracts will officially begin. Meaning we don’t know if they will begin in May or July. If our contracts don’t begin until July, it means we will have gone from March to the end of July with little or no pay. The fact the company refuses to be upfront with teachers, only highlights the poor character of this Thai-run company. 

They assume that they can string the foreign teachers along and we will be there when school starts. But they assume wrong. When the school term starts again, I suspect the companies and schools that have ignored and not looked after the foreign teachers will be left with giant holes to fill. Loyalty is a two way street.

Anonymous Teacher

I think you guys get the point. Because this gentleman is a 1 in 2,000 foreigner teachers (give or take a couple thousand) here in Thailand, he can be disposed of, just like most Americans who have lost their jobs to COVID.

However, because I’m a podcaster, online trainer, teacher, have proven my capabilities and have gotten results, I’m probably a 1 in 3 here in Thailand, putting me in a category that’s hard to get into.

“Arsenio, do you have a lot of work here in Thailand?” Absolutely NOT. There are forces beyond my power that play a pivotal role in this white-ocracy, but because I’m well-known online because the videos, and worldwide because my podcast….there are people inquiring from all corners of the world for my services. How did I do this?

  • Become an asset; not a number
  • Learn skills that others don’t know
  • Build an online persona
  • Strengthen your four cores of credibility
  • Content creation

Whether you’re at home and stuck — or wondering what you can do with all the free time, this is the best way you can start strengthening skills that can provide you with extra income…not waiting on others to open their doors.

Arsenio’s ESL Podcast: IELTS Speaking – Part 1 – Future

We’re back with some more IELTS! And because my other IELTS blogs have been viewed a dozen times a day, I decided to create some more. In addition, if you guys are interested in the Part II & III, it’s available on my IELTS Patreon!

Questions

What job would you like to have ten years from now? [Why]]

How useful will English be for your future? [Why/why not]

How much traveling do you hope to do in the future? [Why/why not]

How do you think your life will change in the future? [Why/why not]

Tips

Listen closely to the question. What job would…..that’s an imaginary situation, right? So your goal is to think outside the box and think of a job in the future. Now, of course you can add additional information in terms of having a portfolio and passive income, but the main goal is to understand the question. I’ve had a number of students go completely off topic, but they still achieved a 6.5 score. Imagine if they can stay on TOPIC.

How useful will English be for YOUR FUTURE

Very important to understand “your” future and not the general public’s future. Students get confused with “the” future and “your” future, so be sure to listen closely to the topic. .

How much traveling do you hope to do in the future.

Pick a common ground. You can even say, “well, not that much because…..”//or “lots because my goal is to give presentations and have an international business.” There’s no wrong answer, but it’s all about picking the tense that you will use.

How do you think you life will change in the future.

Your life can change for a number of reasons, so it’s about explaining why you think it would change. Remember, use your prior explanations about English and it being important for your future to help guide you.

Podcast

Arsenio’s ESL Podcast: Free 10 Days of Patreon is Now Available!

Speaker 1: (00:00)
Back to another ESL podcast, everyone and I am so excited, excited, excited, excited. Because what I’m doing right now for all of you, yes this is a trailer, but a lot of you do not understand the things that I’m actually putting out there. You don’t know about a lot of it. So again, if you’re living in America, this probably doesn’t relate to you so much in terms of the test preparation, but the other things do. So when what this is about is my patrion and all my patron. I finally toggled everything and now I’m beginning to get a lot of inquiries about it. So what I want to tell you guys is if you are learning TOEIC or [inaudible], if you actually go onto my Patrion, which I’ll provide in the link down below, you will be able to get 10 days for free. 

Speaker 1: (00:50)
So you’re going to be able to test everything out for 10 days. And the most beautiful part about this is guess what? At the first of the month, that’s when you would be charged. And if you do not like it, all you have to do is of course cancel before the first of the month. So you have 10 days to say, Hey, oh, you know what? This is very useful. I’m going to go through with it. And on the first of the month I’m going to begin being a paid member of our, you know, our Cineos Patrion and I’m going to support this. Not only that, but actually enable myself to grow in whatever area of English that you’re trying to grow in. So I’m very, very excited about this because a lot of students from Vietnam have approached me with a lot of different inquiry’s. 

Speaker 1: (01:35)
There are other people saying, how can I learn English? What can I do? What can I do here and there? So now I’m following up with everything, telling them, hey, I think you should test this out for a little bit. You’re going to get all of these things here. And then you know what? If you want the silver badge, the gold badge. So what I’m going to do, I’m going to break these down very quickly. So with TOEIC, if you are learning to wick, the TOEIC badge provides obviously lessons in all areas of parts one through seven. So of course you have the photographs part one, part two question and response. I think part three is short conversations in fours, just like that. Two part five grammar, part six is additional grammar ones, incomplete sentences, which I believe is part five and then part six grammar, multiple choice. 

Speaker 1: (02:25)
Then the crazy reading comprehension, which is part seven. Basically what I would do is do reading on one day. I would do listening on another day and then I would cover grammar on another day. Then I would actually do a live Q and a for you guys probably on a Saturday and Sunday. So you can answer so you can ask me questions and I’ll also, these come with the audio and the video and the worksheets and the pdf and the audio. You basically get everything in there and all of it’s exclusive because you won’t see any of that on this podcast going forward. Right? So on this podcast you would get different stuff, different material. But again, if you want additional material on top of that, that goes deeper, you could go onto my page here on TOEIC. Same thing with ILT aisles. When I kicked that off, that’s going to be obviously at a higher premium, but I have to cover a lot of different things. 

Speaker 1: (03:18)
The reading is extremely difficult to cover. Then you have the variety and the building up of writing an essays. People be able to submit their essays and submitted by word doc and Google doc so I can correct it. So yes, that’s going to be at a much higher premium. Um, and I’m thinking about bringing on a second person to check the essays and stuff like that too. But nonetheless, all of this is going to be, you guys can ask me more questions about each tier and whatnot. So you have the TOEIC badge, which is, you know, one of the tiers, the ILDs badge, that’s another tier. And then you have the bronze, silver, and gold badge. So for everyone else who isn’t learning the specific test preparation courses, you have a $10 here, $25 here, and a $50 here. The Fi, the $10 here is basically the worksheets, the vocabulary, the building up of writing and reading material. 

Speaker 1: (04:11)
Okay. As well as probably a podcast here and there, you know, as a pop up from what might be featured in the silver tier. So the silver, I’m sorry, the silver badge, it has everything from the bronze badge and then it has free coaching hours. It has audios of each of the things on that specific in this specific bronze badge. So whatever you get in there, it’s an audio and video form over there. Plus you get additional webinars, additional Q and A’s. And we will do interviews and podcasts and coaching of course. Uh, and then the videos on top of that. And on top of a few other things and other people who I would probably bring into the gold badge as well as advanced teplin templates and different life skill, uh, uh, things like in terms of like succeeding in interviews and you know, doing videos on Q and A’s instead of just asking questions. 

Speaker 1: (05:10)
There are a lot of things that are being offered within these three specific tiers. So again, I am so, so excited about this. I want it to hurry up and just give everyone a nice for. Um, what does it just give you guys a rundown of what’s being offered and you have 10 days to act, 11 days to act again. If you act now, you’ll be able to get all, you know, the access of everything. And then after that, hey, guess what? You’re going to be able to have everything at your disposal, which is so, so exciting because then, hey, all those little things, people who are committed to them, and this is what I love about Vietnamese students, they come up to me, they said, I can’t remember vocab. I need to do this. I need to practice this, I need to do this. 

Speaker 1: (05:54)
And I’m like, okay, I got you. I said, is what we’re gonna do? We’re gonna do this, this, this, this, this. And I said, once you start doing this, we’re going to do this. And they’re like, absolutely, I’m excited. And so there is no, Oh, well, I’m not really sure. Kind of like with Thai students, they never really know. And they’re always indecisive with things in terms of learning English because again, they don’t love it. They’re forced to learn it, therefore they hate it. But in Vietnam and other places around the world is completely different. Again, this might be based on individualism. Okay. It might be that all the individuals who I’ve taught out here in Thailand have this, has this type of mentality or maybe not. So nonetheless. And with that being said, I’m so excited. Make sure you check the link. Make sure you email me. I’ll be waiting for all your responses. So as always, I’m your host Arsenio, over and out.

Patreon Badge Details

Bronze Badge

This is the first badge of the three.  This badge is $10 and it will feature the following things. 

– Personalize lessons that cater to Patrons

– Writing

– Vocabulary

– Reading

– Worksheets

– PDF’s

– Academic Writing (once a week)

Silver Badge

This is the second badge of the three, and it will feature the same things from the Bronze badge +

– Personalize lessons that cater to Patrons

– Writing

– Vocabulary

– Reading

– Worksheets

– PDF’s

– Academic Writing (once a week)

– Audios for each lesson

– Additional audiocasts on a weekly basis

– Speaking Task

– A video a week.

Gold Badge

This is the biggest badge of them all! The Bronze Badge and Silver Badge will be in this one including the following. 

– Personalize lessons that cater to Patrons

– Writing

– Vocabulary

– Reading

– Worksheets

– PDF’s

– Academic Writing (once a week)

– Audios for each lesson

– Additional audiocasts on a weekly basis

– Speaking Task

– A video a week.

– One free hour coaching a month (additional session can be added on).

– Live exclusive video

– Q & A

– Videos along with the audiocasts.

TOEIC Badge

This tier is for those who are budget-tight. TOEIC, which is a test preparation course, is featured not only on my blogs and YouTube videos, but now I will begin putting exclusive material here. 

– Weekly Lessons on Reading, Listening & Grammar

– Set days on learning individual schools

– Worksheets

– Downloadable PDF’s

– Exclusive podcasts

– Exclusive videos

– Q & A’s (up to two times a week)

– Webinar

– Live videos

– Cheat sheets

– & More

IELTS Badge

For students who are wanting to learn IELTS around the world, this tier is for serious learners who want exclusive IELTS content. 

– Listening techniques

– Speaking techniques

– Reading skills

– Academic writing

In addition, there will be a range of videos, Q & A’s, and even live coaching (and 1:2:1 coaching twice a month for two hours total). 

There will also be free-writing and free speaking prompts, as well as videos and audio casts (three times a week) for students to study.  Lots of writing samples and you will also have the ability to get 2 writing tasks 1’s and 2 writing tasks 2’s graded.  Any additional writing tasks can be purchased in a bundle. 

Topic requests and videos based on the questions will also be made, so be sure to communicate within the group with me and the other Patrons!

Patreon

Patreon

Arsenio’s ESL Podcast: Special – IELTS Speaking – Part I – Neighbors

We’re back with some IELTS speaking! Excited to bring you guys this edition, and because Part I (television) is such a huge hit, here’s another one! So, with that being said, let’s dive into this!

  • How well do you know the people who live next door to you?
  • How often do you see them?
  • What kinds of problems do people sometimes have with their neighbors?
  • How do you think neighbors can help each other?

So, let’s bring these questions down individually.

How well do you know the people who live next door to you?

This could be a little, a lot, not too well, etc……state how much you know them, then give examples to why it’s only the amount you have chosen.

I don’t know them too well because we don’t often cross each other’s paths. When I come home in the evening, my neighbor would’ve gone off to work already. Before I wake up, my neighbor comes home. The only time we see each other is during the weekend and we often just smile.

Explanation.

How often do you see them?

Because you went into this already, you can just give a time frame: twice a month, quarterly, yearly, during the holidays, a few times a week, etc. Using a variety of language, such as quantifiers to show you have a grasp of the language.

Podcast

YouTube

IELTS Listening: Episode 002 – Labeling a Map

Sometimes, a map completion task asks you to identify an area on a map then choose an answer from a list. For this type of question, you need to familiarize yourself with both the list of options and the features on the map before you start.

Test tip: Before you listen, read the option several times so that you become familiar with the information you need to listen for. Don’t cross out any options unless you are sure they are wrong. If you can’t decide between two answers, write both down and decide later.

Follow me on this YouTube link at the 10:00 mark.

Here’s the photo of the map and answers.

Podcast

YouTube

Tune into my live video on my facebook page.