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This is an IELTS writing task 2 sample answer essay on the topic of the traditional ideas and how helpful they are for young people in the future from the real IELTS exam.

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IELTS Essay: Traditional Ideas and Young People

Traditional ideas from older people about the way to live and behave are not helpful to young people and their futures.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Many are of the belief that past traditions now hold little future value for young people. In my opinion, there are still important lessons young people can learn from their cultural heritage.

Supporters of this contention argue that the changing world has make old ways of life irrelevant. This is especially the case as technology has hastened cultural and economic upheaval. In the past, an individual’s grandparents might be able to give worthwhile advice related to how to behave at work and manage their relationships. This is now less true than ever before because of the advent of social media apps, dating websites, remote working and the loss of traditional career paths. The growth of the internet has had a further globalising effect that erodes the uniqueness of cultures. For example, recent women’s empowerment movements have occurred simultaneously globally, often in conflict with the traditional values of individual nations.

Nonetheless, tradition serves as an increasingly important guide in a world with few fixed values. As the world has become more secular, religious values have declined but cultural traditions remain intact. A standout example of this would be the strong familial ties in Asian nations such as Japan, Korea, China, and Vietnam. Children in these nations are expected to listen to the advice of their parents, maintain cultural traditions, and behave within certain ethical bounds. Without these customs to guide their behaviour, young people would be at the mercy of the values espoused in popular media. However, by following mores from the past, young people will have a foundation to judge their present and future actions.

In conclusion, despite the decreasing relevance of tradition in the modern world, it still holds an important place as a basis for ethical behaviour. Young people must therefore temper their desire to reform with a skeptical reverence for the past.

Analysis

1. Many are of the belief that past traditions now hold little future value for young people. 2. In my opinion, there are still important lessons young people can learn from their cultural heritage.

  1. Paraphrase the overall essay topic.
  2. Write a clear opinion. Read more about introductions here.

1. Supporters of this contention argue that the changing world has make old ways of life irrelevant. 2. This is especially the case as technology has hastened cultural and economic upheaval. 3. In the past, an individual’s grandparents might be able to give worthwhile advice related to how to behave at work and manage their relationships. 4. This is now less true than ever before because of the advent of social media apps, dating websites, remote working and the loss of traditional career paths. 5. The growth of the internet has had a further globalising effect that erodes the uniqueness of cultures. 6. For example, recent women’s empowerment movements have occurred simultaneously globally, often in conflict with the traditional values of individual nations.

  1. Write a topic sentence with a clear main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your main idea.
  3. Develop it with specific examples.
  4. Keep developing it fully.
  5. Stay focused on the same main idea.
  6. If you haven’t included an example, add one at the end.

1. Nonetheless, tradition serves as an increasingly important guide in a world with few fixed values. 2. As the world has become more secular, religious values have declined but cultural traditions remain intact. 3. A standout example of this would be the strong familial ties in Asian nations such as Japan, Korea, China, and Vietnam. 4. Children in these nations are expected to listen to the advice of their parents, maintain cultural traditions, and behave within certain ethical bounds. 5. Without these customs to guide their behaviour, young people would be at the mercy of the values espoused in popular media. 6. However, by following mores from the past, young people will have a foundation to judge their present and future actions.

  1. Write a new topic sentence with a new main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your new main idea.
  3. Include specific details and examples.
  4. Continue developing it…
  5. as fully as possible!
  6. Relate it back to the overall topic.

1. In conclusion, despite the decreasing relevance of tradition in the modern world, it still holds an important place as a basis for ethical behaviour. 2. Young people must therefore temper their desire to reform with a skeptical reverence for the past.

  1. Summarise your main ideas.
  2. Include a final thought. Read more about conclusions here.

Vocabulary

What do the words in bold below mean? Make some notes on paper to aid memory and then check below.

Many are of the belief that past traditions now hold little future value for young people. In my opinion, there are still important lessons young people can learn from their cultural heritage.

Supporters of this contention argue that the changing world has make old ways of life irrelevant. This is especially the case as technology has hastened cultural and economic upheaval. In the past, an individual’s grandparents might be able to give worthwhile advice related to how to behave at work and manage their relationships. This is now less true than ever before because of the advent of social media apps, dating websites, remote working and the loss of traditional career paths. The growth of the internet has had a further globalising effect that erodes the uniqueness of cultures. For example, recent women’s empowerment movements have occurred simultaneously globally, often in conflict with the traditional values of individual nations.

Nonetheless, tradition serves as an increasingly important guide in a world with few fixed values. As the world has become more secular, religious values have declined but cultural traditions remain intact. A standout example of this would be the strong familial ties in Asian nations such as Japan, Korea, China, and Vietnam. Children in these nations are expected to listen to the advice of their parents, maintain cultural traditions, and behave within certain ethical bounds. Without these customs to guide their behaviour, young people would be at the mercy of the values espoused in popular media. However, by following mores from the past, young people will have a foundation to judge their present and future actions.

In conclusion, despite the decreasing relevance of tradition in the modern world, it still holds an important place as a basis for ethical behaviour. Young people must therefore temper their desire to reform with a skeptical reverence for the past.

Answers

For extra practice, write an antonym (opposite word) on a piece of paper to help you remember the new vocabulary:

of the belief think

past traditions customs from the past

hold little future value won’t help later

important lessons meaningful teaching

cultural heritage history and traditions of a people

supporters those in favour of

contention argument

irrelevant no longer important

especially the case in particular true

hastened cultural and economic upheaval sped up the changes in society

worthwhile valuable

manage deal with

This is now less true than ever before now not as much the case

advent beginning

social media apps TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, Snap, etc.

remote working working from home

loss of traditional career paths normal jobs going away

growth development

further globalising effect countries becoming more similar

erodes disappears

uniqueness special

recent women’s empowerment movements feminist reforms in recent years

occurred simultaneously globally happened at the same time all over the world

in conflict with fighting

traditional values beliefs from the past

individual nations singular countries

nonetheless regardless of

tradition serves as customs are

increasingly more and more

guide help

few fixed values not many set beliefs

secular non-religious

religious values morals from God

remain intact stay alive

standout example good instance

strong familial ties good relationships in families

expected to will likely

maintain keep

behave within certain ethical bounds follow rules

customs traditions

guide someone to follow

at the mercy of vulnerable to

espoused propagated

mores customs

foundation basis

judge form an opinion of

present and future actions right now and later

decreasing relevance becoming less important

important place key area

basis foundation

temper weaken

desire wanting to

reform changes

skeptical reverence wary level of respect

Pronunciation

Practice saying the vocabulary below and use this tip about Google voice search:

ɒv ðə bɪˈliːf 
pɑːst trəˈdɪʃənz 
həʊld ˈlɪtl ˈfjuːʧə ˈvæljuː 
ɪmˈpɔːtənt ˈlɛsnz 
ˈkʌlʧərəl ˈhɛrɪtɪʤ
səˈpɔːtəz 
kənˈtɛnʃən 
ɪˈrɛlɪvənt
ɪsˈpɛʃəli ðə keɪs 
ˈheɪsnd ˈkʌlʧərəl ænd ˌiːkəˈnɒmɪk ʌpˈhiːvəl
ˈwɜːθˈwaɪl 
ˈmænɪʤ
ðɪs ɪz naʊ lɛs truː ðæn ˈɛvə bɪˈfɔː
ˈædvənt 
ˈsəʊʃəl ˈmiːdiə æps
rɪˈməʊt ˈwɜːkɪŋ 
lɒs ɒv trəˈdɪʃənl kəˈrɪə pɑːðz
grəʊθ 
ˈfɜːðə ˌgləʊb(ə)laɪˈzing ɪˈfɛkt 
ɪˈrəʊdz 
juːˈniːknəs 
ˈriːsnt ˈwɪmɪnz ɪmˈpaʊəmənt ˈmuːvmənts 
əˈkɜːd ˌsɪməlˈteɪniəsli ˈgləʊbəli
ɪn ˈkɒnflɪkt wɪð 
trəˈdɪʃənl ˈvæljuːz 
ˌɪndɪˈvɪdjʊəl ˈneɪʃənz
ˌnʌnðəˈlɛs
trəˈdɪʃən sɜːvz æz 
ɪnˈkriːsɪŋli 
gaɪd 
fjuː fɪkst ˈvæljuːz
ˈsɛkjʊlə
rɪˈlɪʤəs ˈvæljuːz 
rɪˈmeɪn ɪnˈtækt
ˈstændaʊt ɪgˈzɑːmpl 
strɒŋ ˈfæmɪliel taɪz
ɪksˈpɛktɪd tuː 
meɪnˈteɪn 
bɪˈheɪv wɪˈðɪn ˈsɜːtn ˈɛθɪkəl baʊndz
ˈkʌstəmz 
gaɪd 
æt ðə ˈmɜːsi ɒv 
ɪsˈpaʊzd 
ˈməʊriːz 
faʊnˈdeɪʃən 
ˈʤʌʤ 
ˈprɛznt ænd ˈfjuːʧər ˈækʃ(ə)nz
diːˈkriːsɪŋ ˈrɛlɪvəns 
ɪmˈpɔːtənt pleɪs 
ˈbeɪsɪs 
ˈtɛmpə 
dɪˈzaɪə 
ˌriːˈfɔːm 
ˈskɛptɪkəl ˈrəvərəns 

Vocabulary Practice

I recommend getting a pencil and piece of paper because that aids memory. Then write down the missing vocabulary from my sample answer in your notebook:

Many are o______________f that p_________________s now h____________________e for young people. In my opinion, there are still i_______________________s young people can learn from their c__________________e.

S________________s of this c____________n argue that the changing world has make old ways of life i________________t. This is e________________e as technology has h__________________________________l. In the past, an individual’s grandparents might be able to give w_____________e advice related to how to behave at work and m___________e their relationships. T____________________________________e because of the a________t of s__________________s, dating websites, r________________g and the l_________________________________s. The a_________t of the internet has had a f______________________________t that e_________s the u__________________s of cultures. For example, r__________________________________s have o_________________________________y, often i_________________h the t______________________s of i_____________________s.

N________________s, t___________________s an i_______________y important g__________e in a world with f___________________s. As the world has become more s_____________r, r________________s have declined but cultural traditions r________________t. A s__________________e of this would be the s______________________s in Asian nations such as Japan, Korea, China, and Vietnam. Children in these nations are e____________o listen to the advice of their parents, m_____________n cultural traditions, and b_________________________s. Without these c________s to g_______e their behaviour, young people would be a________________f the values e____________d in popular media. However, by following m_______s from the past, young people will have a f_____________n to j_______e their p______________________s.

In conclusion, despite the d_________________________e of tradition in the modern world, it still holds an i_____________________e as a b_______s for ethical behaviour. Young people must therefore t_________r their d________e to r__________m with a s______________________e for the past.

Listening Practice

Learn more about this topic in the video below and practice with these activities:

Reading Practice

Read more about this topic and use these ideas to practice:

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/09/america-without-family-god-or-patriotism/597382/

Speaking Practice

Practice with the following speaking questions from the real IELTS speaking exam:

Food

  1. Do people in your country often eat together?
  2. Why are family meals less common today?
  3. Is this a positive or negative development?
  4. Are there any holidays in your country centred around food?
  5. Are international foods a threat to the traditional culture of your country?

Writing Practice

Practice with the same basic topic below and then check with my sample answer:

Some think the current generation should take steps to protect the environment for the next generation.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?


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