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A good format for TOEFLŪ speaking 1 and 2 (and 30 questions)

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A good format for TOEFL speaking 1 and 2 (and 30 questions) #1 (permalink) Wed Jul 11, 2012 19:57 pm   A good format for TOEFL speaking 1 and 2 (and 30 questions)

Hi - I'm happy to find a resource where I can potentially help some foreign students. Thank you to the creators of this site. :)

I'm Daniel Gauss, a teacher in New York City. Actually, as some background information, I was in some Asian newspapers a while ago because I used to teach English to some Korean pop stars in Manhattan. :P You can read about that by searching for: Wonder Girls Ill-treated Korea Herald or JYP admits Wonder Girls lack insurance Korea Herald. I wasn't happy about the way these performers were being treated in America.

In any case, I put together a pretty good free resource for students who are taking the TOEFL exam.

Unfortunately this site won't allow me to post a link, so you can find that free resource by searching for: Crazy TOEFL speaking topics and a good format for your answers. You'll find 30 really good speaking questions and a good format with which to answer the questions!

I hope it's ok for me to mention this. I'm not trying to make money, so I'm assuming this is ok - the free resource can really help you if you are taking the TOEFL.

Good luck - if you need any further help, you can find my email on that link and drop me a line. If I can, I'll try to help you.

Here's a quick cut and paste - the formating is better on the original blog site:

When I tutor the TOEFL exam (and I've had a huge amount of success lately doing so) I like coming up with creative and silly TOEFL topics for the first two speaking sections.

Usually they ask you to speak for 45 seconds describing something. Then they ask you to speak for 45 seconds explaining why you like one thing over another.

I'm going to provide you (and your tutor) with a lot of fun topics. The more of these topics you answer, the better your answers will be.

But first, what's the best format to answer these first two types of questions?

Use the Gauss method :P

Reason #1
Example #1
Reason #2
Example #2
Conclusion (beginning with the word 'although')

Example: Which do you prefer coffee or tea?

You only have 45 seconds, so come up with brief sentences for each part of the format.

Intro: I always wake up to a good cup of green tea in the morning. I can't live without it. So I'd pick tea for two reasons.

Reason #1: Green tea is good for a person's health.

Example #1: For example, I read in the NY Times that if a person drinks 4 cups of green tea per day, his risk of getting a heart attack will be decreased by 45%.

Reason #2: Second of all, I like the way tea tastes.

Example #2: For instance, coffee has a very strong and bitter taste. If I put a little honey into my green tea, however, it tastes absolutely delicious.

Conclusion (using 'although'): Although most people wake up to coffee because it has a stronger amount of caffeine and can really wake you up fast, I usually get a good night's sleep so I am more concerned about my health and the taste of my morning drink.

Isn't that a good format? Practice the althoughs!!!!!! If you can give your answer a nice tight ending, you'll impress the grader.

But, what if they ask you to describe something? You can use the same format.

Example: Describe your favorite building in your hometown.

Intro: I love older, classic architecture, and so Trinity Church on Broadway and Wall Street is my favorite building for two reasons.

Reason #1: First of all, it has an amazing cemetery surrounding it.

Example #1: The cemetery has graves and tombstones going back to the 1600s. The tombstones are actually quite scary, with skulls and cross bones and written warnings about living a good life. The tomb of Alexander Hamilton is also there.

Reason #2: Second of all, the church looks beautiful in contrast to the surrounding buildings.

Example #2: Almost every building surrounding Trinity is an office building or skyscraper and most of these buildings are gray or silver. Trinity is a delicious brown chocolate color and with its neo-Gothic architecture it really stands out!

Conclusion: So although most people think about the Empire State Building or some other tourist attraction when they think of favorite buildings, I like Trinity for its old cemetery and architectural design and color.

Isn't this a great format!!!!!!?

Here are some strange TOEFL speaking questions. I hope practicing with these will help you.

1) Should a person shower the night before or in the morning?
2) When a man takes a woman to dinner, should he pay or should they go "dutch"? (Each pays for him/herself.)
3) Do you prefer reading e-books or real books?
4) Describe something you do during your favorite season?
5) Which is better to lose weight: dieting or exercising?
6) Which is better for a history class: online or classroom learning?
7) Which is the best month for a holiday?
8) What is good advice for a person who is having trouble falling asleep?
9) Now that you are in America, should you keep your foreign name or adopt an American name?
10) When you are in a Chinese restaurant, do you use chopsticks or a fork? Why?
11) Which is better for you, texting someone or calling him/her?
12) Some people think there should be a tax on soda to encourage people to stop drinking it. Agree or disagree?
13) Do you agree: You should always give a waitress a tip even if her service is bad?
14) In an airport do you prefer to go through the body scanner or to be "frisked"? (The security guard runs his/her hands over your body.)
15) What's the worst place to take a tourist in your current city?
16) What's the most stupid holiday you can think of?
17) What was the most important time in your life?
18) If you were in Spain and someone gave you tickets to a bullfight, would you go?
19) Do you think it is important to use capital letters in e-mail messages or is it OK to just use small letters?
20) Should cell phones be prohibited in schools?
21) Should bullying be a crime?
22) Should you give money to people begging in the street or on the subway?
23) Should we have shorter work weeks and longer hours (i.e. 4 days at 10 hours each day)?
24) Would you prefer to go to an art museum or a movie?
25) If you were convicted of a murder, would you prefer the death sentence or life in prison?
26) Is it better to save your money or to spend it as soon as you get it?
27) Do you prefer the white meat of a chicken or the dark meat?
28) Should people be of the same religion when they get married?
29) Is it better to wake up early in the morning or later in the day?
30) Do you believe pet animals should be cloned?

OK< there are 30 good and sometimes weird TOEFL questions!!!!!! Good luck!!!!!

TOEFL listening lectures: What aspect of Carl Sandburg's life does the professor mainly discuss?
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Joined: 11 Jul 2012
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A good format for TOEFL speaking 1 and 2 (and 30 questions) #2 (permalink) Thu Jul 12, 2012 3:30 am   A good format for TOEFL speaking 1 and 2 (and 30 questions)

Sounds great - thanks for the advice! Any help for question types 3-6?
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