IELTS Speaking Part 1 Model Answer: Talking about School

IELTS Speaking Part 1 Model Answer: Talking about School

There’s a really great chance that the topic of school or education will come up in the IELTS speaking test – here’s my model answer on it!

A couple of key tips for your speaking:

1. If you don’t understand the question, you can ask for clarification of specific words but you can’t ask ‘Can you explain that?’ The examiner will just repeat the question and then move on if you don’t understand.

2. There’s no task achievement for speaking so if you are not 100% sure about the question you can try answering it anyway as long as you get the topic.

3. Don’t talk forever or too little! Aim for about 10 – 30 seconds per answer and 2 – 4 sentences.

You can read some more tips here and about exactly what will happen on your test here.

I have also written some model answers for speaking about friends and free time and phones.

Finally, I did a full IELTS speaking test that you can watch here.

Enjoy!

 

 

IELTS Speaking Part 1 Model Answer: Talking about School by Dave!

Watch more like it on my YouTube Channel.

 

 

Practice Activities!

Listen and fill in the gaps:

What did you like the most about your school?

Well, if you _______________ – if you’re talking about my primary school – the _______________ I liked were my teachers. I don’t know if it was just because I was a kid at the time but they were really warm and friendly – and it was some of my teachers _______________ – that inspired me to have a life-long passion for reading. I remember in particular one teacher – I can’t remember her name – it was Mrs. Riley or something – and she would always encourage me to read books, _______________ me books, talk about books with me. And that really got me _______________ books at a time when I was really _______________ .

Answers:

What did you like the most about your school?

Well, if you put me on the spot – if you’re talking about my primary school – the number one thing I liked were my teachers. I don’t know if it was just because I was a kid at the time but they were really warm and friendly – and it was some of my teachers back then – that inspired me to have a life-long passion for reading. I remember in particular one teacher – I can’t remember her name – it was Mrs. Riley or something – and she would always encourage me to read books, loan me books, talk about books with me. And that really got me into books at a time when I was really impressionable.

Listen and correct the mistakes:

Do you stay in contact with old school friends?

Not really, I’ve got one better friend back in the United States, but we don’t actually walk all that much anymore. He recently got married and we used to be best buddies, we would hang out as school, we’d go buy pizza together, we’d ride around together, we chatted about girls and about school and about our future – all this stuff – but since I’ve moved to Vietnam we’ve kind of known apart and we’re not really as closely as we used to been.

Answers:

Do you stay in contact with old school friends?

Not really, I’ve got one best friend back in the States, but we don’t actually talk all that much anymore. He recently got married and we used to be best buds, we would hang out after school, we’d go get pizza together, we’d drive around together, we chatted about girls and about school and about out future – all that stuff – but since I’ve moved to Vietnam we’ve kind of grown apart and we’re not really as close as we used to be.

Listen and add in the grammar:

What were your best subjects in school?

I – (donot have) that many good subjects at all but I  – (is) really good in literature because I  – (read) a lot so it just  – (come) naturally to me. I  – (is) also good in history. I never  – (study) but I  – (listen) in class and I  – (have) like a, like a brilliant memory, almost like a photographic memory but not quite. And I  – (can) just  – (remember) dates and names and everything – simple! So I never  –  (have) to study but I always  – (get) top marks in history. And besides that I  – (is) good in gym because I  – (is) very athletic but even if  – (you are) not athletic  – (it is) easy to get good marks when  –  (you are) in gym. I  – (is not) good at math or the sciences or anything like that – things where you actually  – (have) to  – (put) in real work, I  – (is) bad at those things.

 

Answers:

What were your best subjects in school?

I didn’t have that many good subjects at all but I was really good in literature because I read a lot so it just came naturally to me. I was also good in history. I never studied but I listened in class and I had – like a – like a brilliant memory – almost like a photographic memory but not quite. And I could just remember dates and names and everything – simple! So I never had to study but I always got top marks in history. And besides that I was good in gym because I was very athletic but even if you’re not athletic it’s easy to get good marks when you’re in gym. I wasn’t good at math or the sciences or anything like that – things where you actually had to put in real work – I was bad at those things.

Choose the correct options:

What do most students in your country do after school?

It’s a big country/county so I can’t really answer for everyone but the school I used to go to – most kids would play sport/sports after school. So girls used to/usually played soccer and depending on the season/reason guys would play basketball or soccer or hockey. If you weren’t doing that, there was like an after-school recreational community ‘club’ where a lot of outcasts in High School could/would go to play computer games or do art or something like that. Some kids would just head/lead home – that’s what I did most of the time. I wanted to get home, play computer games – be alone. So I’d just head home if I wasn’t hanging out with a friend or something like this/that. I think there might have also been some after-school classes but they’re actually not that commonplace/common in America. Most people when they finish school, they’re done with school and they’re moving on to do something fun/funny after school.

Answers:

What do most students in your country do after school?

It’s a big country so I can’t really answer for everyone but the school I used to go to – most kids would play sport after school. So girls usually played soccer and depending on the season guys would play basketball or soccer or hockey. If you weren’t doing that, there was like an after-school recreational community ‘club’ where a lot of outcasts in High School would go to play computer games or do art or something like that. Some kids would just head home – that’s what I did most of the time. I wanted to get home, play computer games – be alone. So I’d just head home if I wasn’t hanging out with a friend or something like that. I think there might have also been some after-school classes but they’re actually not that common in America. Most people when they finish school, they’re done with school and they’re moving on to do something fun after school.

 

 

Key IELTS Speaking Vocabulary:

  • put me on the spot – make me say

  • at the time – back then

  • back then – then

  • inspired me – got me into

  • life-long passion – interest in

  • in particular – especially

  • loan me books – let me borrow

  • impressionable – easily influenced

  • stay in contact – keep in touch

  • the States – America, the USA

  • best buds – best friends

  • chatted about – talked about

  • grown apart – drifted apart

  • came naturally to me – was easy

  • photographic memory – n/a

  • not quite – almost

  • got top marks – straight As

  • put in real work – work hard

  • can’t really answer for everyone – can’t speak for everyone

  • depending on the season – if it was…

  • outcasts – loners, social outcasts

  • head home – go home

Grammar relative clauses with ‘where’:

‘There was like an after-school recreational community ‘club’ where a lot of outcasts in High School would go to play computer games’

If you want to get a band 6 and above for grammar you should include at least one relative clause in your IELTS speaking.

Luckily, the rules for relative clauses are simple and you probably use some already.

There are two main kinds: defining and non-defining.

A defining one is super important for the meaning of the sentence: ‘The place where I met him was really crowded.’

A non-defining one just gives extra information (and uses commas) and is less important – just an extra detail: ‘The club, where my friend also works by the way, was where I met him.’

Some words that you can use for relative clauses include: where, who, what, that, and which

Write some examples of the places you remember well from your childhood:

‘There was a library, where people mainly went to use the internet, and I….’

 

 

Full Sample Answers

What did you like the most about your school?

Well, if you put me on the spot – if you’re talking about my primary school – the number one thing I liked were my teachers. I don’t know if it was just because I was a kid at the time but they were really warm and friendly – and it was some of my teachers back then – that inspired me to have a life-long passion for reading. I remember in particular one teacher – I can’t remember her name – it was Mrs. Riley or something – and she would always encourage me to read books, loan me books, talk about books with me. And that really got me into books at a time when I was really impressionable.

Do you stay in contact with old school friends?

Not really, I’ve got one best friend back in the States, but we don’t actually talk all that much anymore. He recently got married and we used to be best buds, we would hang out after school, we’d go get pizza together, we’d drive around together, we chatted about girls and about school and about out future – all that stuff – but since I’ve moved to Vietnam we’ve kind of grown apart and we’re not really as close as we used to be.

What were your best subjects in school?

I didn’t have that many good subjects at all but I was really good in literature because I read a lot so it just came naturally to me. I was also good in history. I never studied but I listened in class and I had – like a – like a brilliant memory – almost like a photographic memory but not quite. And I could just remember dates and names and everything – simple! So I never had to study but I always got top marks in history. And besides that I was good in gym because I was very athletic but even if you’re not athletic it’s easy to get good marks when you’re in gym. I wasn’t good at math or the sciences or anything like that – things where you actually had to put in real work – I was bad at those things.

What do most students in your country do after school?

It’s a big country so I can’t really answer for everyone but the school I used to go to – most kids would play sport after school. So girls usually played soccer and depending on the season guys would play basketball or soccer or hockey. If you weren’t doing that, there was like an after-school recreational community ‘club’ where a lot of outcasts in High School would go to play computer games or do art or something like that. Some kids would just head home – that’s what I did most of the time. I wanted to get home, play computer games – be alone. So I’d just head home if I wasn’t hanging out with a friend or something like that. I think there might have also been some after-school classes but they’re actually not that common in America. Most people when they finish school, they’re done with school and they’re moving on to do something fun after school.

 

 

Comment below:

What did you like the most about your school?

Do you stay in contact with old school friends?

What were your best subjects in school?

What do most students in your country do after school?

 

IELTS Speaking Sample Test with Dave: IELTS Examiner (Band 9)

IELTS Speaking Sample Test with Dave: IELTS Examiner (Band 9)

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to watch an IELTS examiner do an IELTS speaking test sample?

I did this one on my YouTube channel with an IELTS teacher from Vietnam, Phan Quynh (you can check out her Facebook here).

It’s a lot harder to do the test when you’re one answering the questions! Obviously…

 

 

It was also fun and gave me a window into why students feel so nervous and how that can impact their performance. Just by watching this video you can become more familiar with the test and will feel more comfortable on test day.

But I’ve done a million tests and I was still nervous to do it!

One little trick that I’ve learned (that may or may not) help you is to trick yourself from feeling nervous to excited. (Here’s the video where I heard about it.)

Nervousness and excitement are very similar in terms of how they work in the body mainly because of a faster heartrate.

So trick your body: Say ‘I’m excited!’ and you will feel less nervous – and more excited!

Try that out and let me know if it works!

If it doesn’t then just be nervous.

I’m not sure that being nervous is so bad! Just be IELTS-nervous for a bit then go back to being normally-socially-nervous for the rest of the day! Eventually you’ll be allowed to go to bed…

 

Transcript

 

  • This is the International English Language Testing System for English Conducted on April 27th at BC. The candidate is David Lang. The examiner is Quynh Phan. Examiner number 910874.

  • Good morning.

  • My name is Quynh. Can you tell me your full name please?

  • My name is David Arthur Lang.

  • Can I see your identification please?

  • Here you go.

  • There you are.

  • Thank you.

 

Part 1

 

  • Now in this first part, I’d like to ask you some questions about yourself.

  • Do you live in a house or an apartment?

  • At the moment, I’m living in an apartment.

  • Do you like your home?

  • Yes, I like it a lot. I just started living here the last year. And it’s got three floors. It’s got a roof on the outside as well. It’s a place for me to stay as well as my daughter and an office to work in. So I really think I made a good choice with this house.

  • What kind of home would you like to have in the future?

  • I think in the future I wanna live in more of an Because I’ve always lived in a house, especially in Vietnam. And if you live in a house, there’s a lot you have to take care of. And if you live in an apartment, then everything is easy. You can park below. You can hire a maid. And it just seems like it’s a lot cleaner and simpler to live in a big apartment in a big building.

  • Let’s talk about your birthday

  • What do normally do on your birthdays?

  • Now I don’t really do much of anything. Maybe I’ll go out with family to go get dinner or something like that. When I was younger, it was a bigger deal. Especially in university or high school, you may see your friends or have a party or something like that. But I haven’t had a party for my birthday in … like … 10 years…really…

  • So how important are birthdays to you now?

  • Not very important I’d say, at least my own birthday. I don’t think it’s that important. But other people’s birthdays, I like to go out if they’re having a party or doing something like that. But my own birthday, I don’t really think is a priority anymore in the way that it used to be.

  • Which birthdays are most important in your country? (e.g. 18, 21, 60)

  • In America, I think the most important birthday is probably sixteen. I don’t know exactly why sixteen is important. I think people can start driving around then. We call it “your sweet sixteen”. That’s the most important birthday. And then also when you’re eighteen. Because when you’re eighteen, you’re allowed to vote. So that’s the second one. And then when you’re 21, you’re allowed to drink. So that’s the – probably for most people that’s actually the most important one. When you’re older, I think the 50th birthday, because fifty is a big number. People tend to have a big celebration for their 50th And obviously if you make it, a hundred is probably the biggest one.

  • Let’s talk about advertisements/adverts.

  • Have you ever bought something because of an advert you saw?

  • Yep, all the time, I think I buy a lot of things because of advertisements that I see. I bought my motorbike because of an advertisement that I saw on a website. A friend of mine had recommended it to me and then I saw the advertisement on the website, so I decided to get that motorbike.

  • Do you prefer funny or serious adverts?

  • I think it depends on the products, but in general, funny advertise Because serious advertisements – it’s not like a movie or TV show, you can’t ever really care about an advertisement. So there’s no point in having a serious one. But a funny one, if it’s good, is funny, so it doesn’t even matter if it’s an advertisement or not, because it was funny. But I think most advertisements that try to be funny end up not actually being funny anyway.

  • What do you think about adverts on buildings?

  • On buildings? It’s a strange question but I think… Advertisements on buildings… In general, I guess if there were fewer of them, that would be better. Because usually the building itself should look nice. And it’d be better if there were some art or some street art or graffiti on the building as opposed to advertisements.

  • Now, I’m going to give you a topic and I’d like you to talk about it for one to two minutes. Before you talk, you’ll have one minute to think about what you’re going to say. You can make some notes if you wish. Do you understand?

Part 2

 

  • Here’s some paper and a pencil for making notes. And here’s your topic. Please don’t write anything on the booklet. I’d like you to describe an invention which you think has changed the world in a good way.

  • All right? Remember you have 1 – 2 minutes for this so don’t worry if I stop you. I’ll tell you when the time is up. Can you start speaking now please?

  • Yep, definitely. So I think you probably thought like most people, I was just going to talk about a cellphone or smartphone. But I’ve chosen not to talk about what everyone else talks about smartphone, and instead, to talk about indoor plumbing. Which think is important, basically toilets.

  • And I think it’s definitely changed the world in a good way. I don’t know exactly what life is like before toilets, but I imagine from the movies that I’ve seen and from old historical TV shows that people had to… like… dig a hole in the ground and have an outhouse. Or they had to have like a pot in their bedroom in their house or something like that.

  • Regardless y’know people probably got used to it because you can get used to anything. But I doubt that people really enjoyed that. It was probably pretty terrible, it smelled bad, it’s dirty, you have to clean it all the time. I’m sure people y’know they were used to it, they had to do it everyday, just like there’s lots of things we have to do everyday like our laundry and everything. In the future, maybe they won’t have to.

  • But once toilets were invented I think it changed everyone’s life. Because it was convenient and clean. And the people who were in that first generation – between when they didn’t have toilets and then when they suddenly did have toilets – probably appreciated that a lot.

  • And when their kids were growing for the first time with toilets and they never knew what it was like to not have one. They probably felt that their kids were kind of spoiled.

  • And I think, today, like our whole world is spoiled in terms of indoor plumbing because we just consider it something that we’ve always had. But someone had to invent it, and after someone invented it, someone had to develop it and work on it… and make them better, and make them nicer, and develop a system so there’s thousands of years or hundreds of years… I don’t know… thousands maybe of people developing toilets, and building them and making them, and working on them. Just so that we have that convenience now.

  • Thank you. Does everybody use toilets?

  • As far as I know, yes.

  • Thank you. Can I have the booklet and paper and pencil back please?

 

Part 3

 

  • We’ve been talking about an invention which you think has changed the world in a good way and I’d like to discuss with you a few more general questions related to this.

  • What are the most useful inventions that people have in their homes (e.g. in the kitchen)?

  • In the kitchen, the refrigerator is definitely the most useful invention. Because that’s where you keep your food, keeps it cold… Obviously the stove to cook the food that you have… The freezer part of the refrigerator, if someone has an oven to cook, that’s useful. And then there’s other things like blenders and food processers. But those things maybe aren’t quite as important as the stove, the oven and the refrigerator.

  • And now we’re talking about technology in education

  • Is watching television programs in class can be a good way to learn?

  • It depends on how the teacher uses it, if like, I remember when I was in school and teachers, were just – sometimes they’re lazy and they want to take a day off. I didn’t realize it at the time but later you realize that’s what they were doing, now I’m a teacher, but if you’re just putting on a TV show for kids to watch. It’s boring for the students, you don’t learn much. But you’re using it, if you do some activities before the TV show and you watch a few minutes of it, and you do some analysis and some practice and you watch some more of it and you do some more and it’s a good show, and it’s engaging and you work with it, then it can be. But it depends entirely on the quality of the content as well as what the teacher chooses to do with that content in the classroom.

  • Do you think that the computer will one day completely replace the teacher?

  • Yep, definitely. I mean it’s not gonna be in my lifetime, but it will absolutely for sure – once they have artificially intelligent computers and robots, and tihngs like that, just because it’s more efficient and it’s gonna be cheaper. And some company just like companies like UBER, they develop this really good convenient product, even though people, maybe they don’t want that product. Looking at it from far away, it’s so useful that it ends up becoming totally necessary for everyone. And that’s gonna be the same thing with teachers and computers. They will replace teachers.

  • Why do many people consider the wheel to be the most important invention ever?

  • I think a lot of people might consider the wheel because it’s probably a – it’s a groundbreaking invention… it’s probably one of the first inventions, right? So people invented spears and weapons and tools. And the wheel was probably one of the first biggest innovations. It was like the iPhone of its day. So it was a big innovation. It allowed people to transport and move things. And I think a lot of people consider it the most important because it signaled the beginning of human dominance over the world. It was the first tool that really started to… Before that, we’re just like smart animals that can hunt well. But after that we started to changed the world. And the wheel was the beginning of that.

  • Do you think that the most important inventions have already been developed?

  • Nope, definitely not. The most important inventions are still to come because there’re related to computers and humans and health, and how people will change in the future. And our inventions in the future are definitely gonna be much more important than the ones of the past. Because they’re gonna fundamentally alter how we are as people and change the future and change the world, if you’re talking about space as well, traveling to space and different things like that. They will be much bigger than anything in the past.

  • Thank you very much. That is the end of the speaking test.

  • Thank you.

 

 

And here is some analysis of the vocabulary:

 

hire a maid: pay for someone to clean up after you, lazy

bigger deal: more important

it doesn’t even matter: not important

end up: finish

y’know: nothing, just stalling for time…

depends entirely: nothing else matters

gonna: the correct way to say ‘going to’

fundamentally: completely/totally

alter: change

 

A couple quick tips to follow for your speaking test:

 

Provide a lot of detail in each answer.

It’s easier to provide detail if you are specific, not general! Don’t just talk about the future generally – talk about the specific things you want to do! The more specific the better.

Keep talking for the full two minutes – don’t stop before the examiner stops you! (And don’t try to keep talking after he stops you!)

Be born and live your whole life in a native English speaking country – the best way to do well on IELTS!

 

Comment below – Was it really band 9? How could it be better? Should I do another?

IELTS Speaking Part 2 Sample Answer (Band 8): A Person from History

IELTS Speaking Part 2 Sample Answer (Band 8): A Person from History

Talking about a person from history is a really common topic for IELTS Speaking Part 2 and IELTS speaking in general.

It sometimes comes up on speaking part 1 or 3 as well.

This is a sample answer from Nguyen on our YouTube Channel, our first ever customer for Band Scores and Corrections and a current employee.

Here are some other speaking samples: phones, friends, school, and a full test from Dave!

She lived in Australia for years, which you can tell from her really nice accent and the range of natural vocabulary that she uses.

I’m a former IELTS examiner and I’m going to go over exactly how I would mark her for this section and give you some great vocabulary and grammar to practice to make sure you can get at lease a band 7!

 

LEONARDO DAVINCI

Nguyen’s topic for this section was to talk about a person from history and she chose Leonardo DaVinci.

Let’s let Nguyen talk:

And here is the full tapescript with corrections in magenta:

Ok so a person from history I’m going to talk about today is Leonardo DaVinci. Leonardo DaVinci was an Italian Renaissance polymath whose areas of interest included invention architecture, sculpting, science and there are so many more that I can’t remember them all right now. But in general he was a multi-talented man. Um … and he’s also considered one of the greatest painters of all time. And many historians and scholars regard Leonardo DaVinci as a universal genius or a Renaissance man. And among his works the Mona Lisa is the most famous and duplicated portrait with ‘The Last Supper’ being the most reproduced religious painting of all time. And I think one – there was a historian – that I can’t remember the name – once said that “Leonardo DaVinci went beyond his time” – that he could – he could think of inventions that were so advanced that most of his work and designs weren’t feasible during his lifetime, and most of his designs weren’t recognised or realised until 100 years later. And during his time, which was like 500 years ago, he was able to conceptualise the flying machine, armored fighting vehicle and even concentrated solar power. The reason why I admire him is because I think that he – I agree with all other historians and scholars that he was one of the greatest painters of all time and somehow I think his personality and – his personality was quite mysterious and remote in a way that it has made me more curious to learn more about him.

Ok, back to me.

When examiners are marking, they usually have the band descriptors on the chair next to them (so you can’t see them). They might consult them during or after your test.

Here is how I would mark Nguyen based on the IELTS band descriptors.

 

FLUENCY – 7

This is the weakest part of Nguyen’s answer so I would give her a band 7.

Here’s why: She hesitates a lot during the answer!

If you look at the band descriptors, there is a difference between hesitating because you are thinking of language and when you are thinking of an idea.

That means if the examiner thinks you are hesitating to think of the English words you will lose marks. If you hesitate to think of an idea, you shouldn’t lost any marks.

Some of Nguyen’s hesitations are related to ideas (and remembering information about DaVinci) but many are language related.

That’s the negative side of her fluency score.

What’s good is that she maintains a flow of speech for the full time and her answer is coherent. She begins by introducing DaVinci, then describes why he is famous and ends by talking about what historians have said about him and his legacy.

Like a movie, her answer has a clear beginning, middle and end that makes it easy for the listener to understand.

I gave Nguyen a band 7 for fluency but I think she will end up with band 8 across the whole test. Part 2 is usually the worst for fluency for most students. It’s hard even for a native speaker to talk that long without a lot of hesitations!

 

 

VOCABULARY – 8

This is one of the stronger parts of the answer so I would give her a band 8 for vocabulary. This is a very strong 8.

Vocabulary is based on two things: accuracy and range.

There aren’t any mistakes in terms of accuracy but some additions would make it better: quintessential renaissance man, ahead of his time.

There are lots of examples of high-level vocabulary: Italian Renaissance polymath, multi-talented, of all time, historians and scholars, universal genius, duplicated portrait, feasible during his lifetime, recognised or realised, conceptualise, concentrated solar power, admire, quite mysterious and remote.

What does high-level vocabulary mean? It means that the vocabulary fits the context very well. It is descriptive and rich.

Instead of saying ‘he could do many things’ she says ‘multi-talented.’ Instead of ‘invent’ she says ‘conceptualise’ Because he didn’t produce many things, he merely drew sketches of flying machines for example, the word conceptualise is much more descriptive.

Here are some notes for your reference with some vocabulary that you can use to talk about a person from history:

 

 

 

GRAMMAR – 8

There are enough little slips in grammar that I almost gave her a 7, but in fact it deserves an 8 for grammar.

Grammar is about the same two things as vocabulary: accuracy and range.

Here are some of the mistakes that Nguyen makes: one incorrect preposition, one subject/verb disagreement, a mistake with plurals, one incorrect tense.

It’s not a lot of mistakes but they are clearly there throughout. Luckily she doesn’t keep making the same mistake and that means the mistakes are non-systemic. If you keep using the wrong article then the mistake is systemic and will hurt your score more according to the band descriptors.

For the good, she is comfortable using past and present forms as well as active, passive and subordinate structures.

Because her mistakes are minor and rare and do not affect understanding and she uses a variety of grammar, I have given her an 8. It is very close to a 7, though. Her grammar is not quite as strong as her vocabulary.

For some more information about grammar, take a look here at using modals to talk about possibility.

 

 

PRONUNCIATION – 8

Nguyen has a nice accent and only makes minor slips with some words so I think she deserved a band 8 for pronunciation.

Pronunciation is marked on an incredibly complex range of features. Most examiners don’t have any idea of makes up pronunciation!

But some of the common areas that examiners look for include: final sounds, intonation, consonant clusters, linking between words (chunking), and individual sounds (phonemes).

Nguyen makes some mistakes with individual phonemes: science (/ts/), universal (/s/).

And there are some moments where she could link together words more naturally using weak sounds so that her chunking is more natural.

Overall, her accent is really nice and her speech is natural and easy to understand throughout.

With three 8s and a 7 her score for the speaking would be 7.5, but Part 2 tends to be when students lose the most marks for fluency and on the real IELTS she got an 8. You can think of her as a good example of a Band 7.5/8.

 

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IELTS Speaking Model Answer – What do you do in your Free Time?

IELTS Speaking Model Answer – What do you do in your Free Time?

This might seem a very obvious topic but practising this will be very beneficial because free time is a very common Speaking Part 1 topic.

And even if it doesn’t come up directly in your test,  parts of your answer can be used in other related topics e.g. family, friends, hobbies, etc.

Part 1 answers don’t always have to be as long as in the video – just answer the question and extend it naturally but don’t worry if you run out of things to say. The examiner will ask you the next question. 

You should aim for around 10 – 30 seconds per answer. Sometimes you can give an extended answer, sometimes a shorter one.

Don’t always give extended answers and don’t always give shorter ones – these could both hurt your fluency score – be natural!

If you want some other speaking model answers you can read (and watch) about friends here, phones here, and school here.

Here are all the most recent speaking questions from the real test in 2019 to practice with and the writing ones are here. Both are updated weekly to reflect real questions on IELTS.

Make sure you include some good natural vocab in your answer and build up to practising the whole question.

You could use notes to help you but don’t rely on them. Your answer should be a different each time – that’s natural.

That’s also why I answered this question a bunch of times! I wanted to give you a sampling of different vocabulary and grammar and show you a good way to practice.

Instead of answering the question the same way each time, and memorising your answer until you sound like a bad actor reading from a script, instead you can try answering the same question with different answers each time.

You could tell the truth or have fun with it and lie or imagine that you are someone else answering the question. Enjoy practicing!

It is also a good idea to vary the length of your responses to be more natural. Some of my answers are short, some are longer…

Can you guess which ones are true/not true?

 

You might have noticed that my speaking style is a little bit fast – you don’t have to speak so quickly! I just do it because I am extremely intelligent.

Here is the tapescript from my speaking:

1. I’m glad you asked me that
because I’ve got a whole range of hobbies that I’m really into.
The main thing I’ll typically do is get out my paints and do a painting,
I’ll sketch something on a piece of paper first
and then maybe make a painting if I’ve got spare time,
besides that I’m really into watching movies, Netflix is my favorite,
so I might just veg out, sit on the couch, catch a movie –
If I’ve got more time than that
then I might call up a friend to see if they want to hang out. 

2. I’m really active, I really like going out,
I hate to stay at home, it’s the worst
so whenever I’ve got a bit of spare time, I’ll call up a friend,
see if they want to chill and I’ll go out with them,
I might go to a coffee shop or,
I love playing sports, I’ll play football with them,
maybe I’ll catch a movie or just go for a walk
and see what’s going on in my neighborhood. 

3. I’m a bit of a homebody, I always stay home,
I really like reading and recently I’ve kind of gotten into audiobooks,
I downloaded an app called audible, which is from Amazon,
and I can just spend a whole day, lying back,
listening to an audiobook, and enjoying that. 

4. I’m super into cooking so when I’ve got some time, I like to cook
and I’ll typically make something that’ll last me for a few days
so it won’t just last me one day.
I can cook it, maybe I’ll cook some rice and put in –
chop up some veggies – put it in there,
maybe a little bit of meat but I’m not a big meat-eater
and I’ll cook a big pot of it so that I can put it in some Tupperware
and keep it in my fridge or my freezer, store it for even longer,
so I can eat it for a while. 

5. I’m really sociable – I like to go out with my friends,
I’ll go out to a coffee shop nearby where I live
because coffee shops are kind of like ‘the big thing’ right now,
or a milk tea shop – that’s really popular in the country where I’m living and –
and I like to gossip with them,
I like to ask them about what’s been going on
in their lives, their family, their friends and kind of catch up about that sort of thing –
I’ll give ‘em an update on my life
but I’m only going to tell them the good things –
I never tell them what’s wrong with my life – 

6. I’m really big into computer games,
I didn’t used to be when I was a kid, it’s kind of a newer hobby for me
but I’ve taken them up in the last few years
so when I’ve got spare time I play on my computer,
I’ve also got an Xbox and a PlayStation,
so I’ll settle down on the couch
and I can easily just spend the whole day playing computer games
and looking up information about new games that are going to come out,
watching previews for new games, talking to friends about games,
I’m obsessed with games!
I’ll play them on my phone if I’m in the elevator or waiting for something,
I like mobile apps – I’m all about games in my spare time. 

7. To be honest with you I don’t really have that much spare time
because I’m so busy with work but if I do get a bit of time for myself
I like to hang out with my girlfriend –
because I’m busy all the time she gets a bit fed up with me
that we don’t get that many chances to catch up
and I don’t give her as much attention as I should
but that’s something that I’m working on,
I try to make more time, try to compartmentalize my life a little bit
so that I’ve got more time to spend with my girlfriend and, in turn,
she’s got more time to spend with me.

8. I’ve got a few pets and I like taking them out,
I’ve got a dog, I’ll take him for a walk,
I’ve also got a cat – you can’t really take a cat for a walk
but you can just lie on the couch and pet them
and that’s quite good for your health, I’ve heard,
your mental health, as well as your –
it can bring down your blood pressure,
I’ve also got a couple of fish so I’ll feed the fish and every once in awhile
I have to clean out their tank which is a whole ordeal to get through
but since uh… – since I love my fish, I’m willing to do anything for them.

 

Here is another speaking model answer about free time from my friend Nick:

Some examples of good vocab are highlighted in the audioscript below:

“Well, one of the things I love to do is just hanging out with my friends. It might sound kinda obvious but my friends are really important to me, and believe it or not I’m kind of an introverted person so I’d rather meet up with them 1 to 1 than in a big group, you know. So maybe we’ll catch up over a coffee or grab some lunch. With my friends back in England, I try and keep in touch over facebook or whatsapp, have a bit of banter and I love getting all their gossip. I’m a bit rubbish sometimes in terms of keeping in touch but I try not to leave it too long without having a proper catch up.”

 

Vocabulary:

hanging out with my friends: spending time together

it might sound kinda obvious but: very clear/common

believe it or not: it is a bit surprising

introverted person: like spending time alone, quiet

meet up: hang out

1 to1: talking with just 1 other person, rather than a group

catch up over a coffee: get a coffee and talk about what is new in your life

grab some lunch: get lunch

keep in touch over facebook: talk over Facebook

banter: idle, casual conversation

getting all their gossip: learning news about other people

rubbish at keeping in touch: not good at contacting friends

try not to leave it too long: try to talk more regularly

having a proper catch up: spend some time atching up rather than just a short conversation

 

 

 

Now it’s your turn! Put your answers in the comments.

– What do you enjoy doing in your free time?

– How often do you hang out with your friends?

– How do you keep in touch with your friends?