Improve your ability to speak English
M: Hello, everyone. My name is Franklin. I’m the president of the Greenville Stamp Collecting Club. Many people ask me why stamp collecting is such a popular hobby. There are several reasons.
First, stamp collecting is inexpensive. Most letters come with stamps on them. All you need to do is remove the stamp from the envelope. It’s true that nowadays we may not get as many letters as we used to. In that case, you might want to buy your first set of stamps. Stamp dealers often sell a lot of stamps for only three dollars!
Second, stamp collecting is educational. Stamps have pictures of everything from world leaders to endangered animals to various sports. It is interesting to learn about the people and things that are pictured on the stamps. It’s much more exciting than reading a boring history book.
Also, stamp collecting can help build friendships between people from around the world. Stamp collectors in India, for example, can build stamp-trading friendships with people from Mexico. They can learn about each other’s culture while they exchange stamps.
Finally, collecting stamps is something that families can do together. Parents and children can spend time enjoying the same hobby and build a closer relationship, instead of sitting in front of the television each night.
So there you have four good reasons why stamp collecting is the world’s number one hobby. I hope you have enjoyed my talk. There are refreshments in the lobby. Thank you.
Rock, Paper, Scissors
G : Come on, Tony, let’s go to a movie tonight.
B : We went to a movie on Saturday, Mary, but we haven’t gone bowling for a long time.
G : I know, let’s play rock, paper, scissors to decide!
B : Rock, paper, scissors? It sounds like an interesting sort of game! How do you play it?
G : First, we each make a fist with our right hand, and then we shake our fists at the same time: one, two, three. On the count of three, you can keep your hand in a fist—that’s rock—or open your hand with the palm flat—that’s paper—or keep your fist, but put out your first and middle fingers—that’s scissors. The winner is the person who has the stronger item.
B : That sounds stupid, because rocks are stronger than paper and scissors, so the rock will win every time.
G : That’s true in real life, Tony, but that’s not how it works in this game. Rock can break scissors, but rock can be covered by paper, and paper can be cut by scissors. So rock defeats scissors, paper beats rock, and scissors beats paper.
B : It’s interesting that each item in the game can defeat one other thing and lose to one other thing. I wonder who invented this game.
G : I don’t know, but it’s played all over the world. There’s even a rock, paper, scissors world championship that has been held every year in Europe since 1934.
Man’s Best Friend
W: Why are dogs often called “man’s best friend?” Probably because dogs have many of the qualities we want in our human companions. They are loyal, friendly, never argue, and are always glad to see us. This is one reason why we have dogs and other pets. Sometimes we might even prefer the company of animals to that of fellow human beings.
Pets provide us with many other benefits as well. Studies have shown that having a pet nearby lowers the blood pressure of elderly people and raises their spirits. One study in Britain showed that people with pets recovered more quickly from heart attacks than those who didn’t have a pet. The study also found that pet owners suffered from fewer common ailments, such as colds, headaches, and fevers, than people who don’t own pets.
Pets help children to learn responsibility. By learning to take care of their pets, children learn how to take care of themselves and other people. Walking dogs each day gives children regular exercise.
Pets can also help keep us safe. Dogs, for example, guard our homes and scare away burglars. Guide dogs help blind people “see” when they need to go outside. Cats catch mice and rats in our houses.
Finally, pets teach us compassion. They give us a chance to show our love to other living creatures. If we can love our pets, it becomes easier to love each other. And that might be the most important benefit of all!
The Active Leisure Center
M: Bored with nothing to do? Come and check out the Active Leisure Center. We offer something for everyone.
The center has a heated outdoor swimming pool with five different water slides for those who want some fun. There’s also an indoor pool with lanes for more serious swimmers. Swimming lessons are available for all levels.
The Active Leisure Center also has a fitness center for those who want to exercise. We have running machines, exercise bikes, weight machines and free weights, and daily aerobics and jazz dance classes. Our fitness experts will be happy to provide you with a fitness program to suit your needs.
The center has a sports hall where you can play indoor soccer, badminton, basketball, and various other sports. You can join community sports groups, sign up for tournaments, or just book the hall for you and your friends to use.
With the school holidays coming soon, why not come and find out about our special holiday programs? We have programs for all ages, from kindergarten to high school students, and if you join now, you can even get a family discount.
So come and take advantage of all that the Active Leisure Center has to offer. We’re open from six a.m. to ten p.m. on weekdays, and eight a.m. to eight p.m. on weekends. For more information, call 325-6188 or visit our website at www.activeleisure.com.
B : Hi, Cindy. Are you ready for the big audition this afternoon?
G : I don’t know, Greg. I’ve been practicing the script all week, but the princess has so many lines that I don’t know if I can remember them all!
B : You don’t have to remember all of them for the audition, just the lines for the main scene, where the pirate meets the princess and tries to kidnap her.
G : I know, but even in that scene, the princess has quite a few lines!
B : You’ve got to think positive and have some confidence in yourself. I think that you’re going to get the part, and that you’ll be a fantastic princess!
G : Well, I’m glad that somebody has confidence in me. I think I’m just worried that I’ll forget my lines. By the way, which part are you going to try out for?
B : I’m trying out for the part of the pirate, the one who tries to steal the princess away from the prince.
G : Oh yeah, the pirate and the prince get to have that cool sword fight in the final scene, and then the prince kills the pirate with his own sword!
B : Yeah, I remember reading that in the script. But at the audition today, we’ll be practicing the scene where the pirate first sees the princess, and falls in love with her.
G : Hey, I’ll help you practice your scene if you’ll help me practice mine.
B : You’ve got a deal! Let’s start now.