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Informal Letter or Email to a Friend - Bad Experience

Informal Letter or Email to a friend - Selling an old camera on an Internet auction site.

Dear Amy, 

How are you doing? We haven’t heard each other for a long time, so I decide to write you a few lines. I also wanted to tell you about bad experience of mine. 

Recently, I ‘ve decided to sell my old camera. Although, it worked very well, I have already saved up for a new one with a better design. That’s why when a friend of mine told me about an auction site she had used before, I quickly signed up to it. 

At first, there was no interest in what I offered but after a few weeks someone wrote to me. I told her everything about the advantages of my device and she seemed very keen to buy it. The only thing that made her hesitate was the price. Then, I explained to her that it was a valuable camera, which is definitely worth its cost and she finally accepted the offer of 200$. In spite of this, she insisted on paying in instalments. Although, this didn’t appeal much to me, I agreed because I thought that there might not be a better customer soon and I needed the money. 

In a week’s time, I sent her the camera and received the expected sum. Unfortunately, I had problems with the action site, which wanted part of the money. What’s even worse, I wasn’t sent any of it the following weeks and nothing could be done about it. Then I realised that auction sites don’t offer enough security and comfort and I advise you never to use one! 

Give my regards to Emma and write soon. 

With love,

Review - Open Air Museum

Review - Open Air Museum "Mini Europe"

The museum I visited and which made an impact on me was ‘Mini Europe’ open-air museum in Brussels. It’s an amazing view for everyone to see.

The whole idea is to show all the best astonishing moments and sights of every country in the EU. It’s just a few kilometres away from Brussels which is convenient for going by car. It is situated in a big park with trees and bushes and there is a small river near it. I have visited it two times so far and I was amazed by the astonishing view of these miniatures. There are over 80 small monuments all over the park and you can take pictures of them. About 2 years ago, when ..... became part of the EU, they put a miniature of .............monastery. We are expecting to put another ............. symbol in the near future. This open-air museum is a view that everyone should see and remember. It’s amazing how you can stand next to the Eiffel tower or the Coliseum. 

The atmosphere is splendid and there are moving parts and written history of the miniatures and even sound effects. And the most interesting aspect is that you can listen to the anthem of the country. There are small rivers and waterfalls all over the place and you can enjoy having your lunch there.

This museum made a great impact on me and it’s worth going there. Everyone I know, who has been there, has the same opinion about it. Personally, I can go there every year and just take my time looking at all these monuments full of history, without travelling too much!

Describe an Ideal House - version 2

Task: Describe an ideal house

The ideal house is for me such a place where I will always get comfort, peace and rest. 

What will my house be like? I close my eyes and see it in front of me at once. First of all, it is overlooking the sea. The sea is my passion. I want every day to breathe and feel the smell of it and hear the black-headed gulls. There’s no need to use any transport to get to the city from the house, because it will take you only a ten minutes’ walk. That’s very important for me because all my life I am dependent on something else – for example, the buses. 

It is two storeys high. There’s a huge garden in front of it. Its interior depends on the light and warmth. I come in and find myself in a small hall leading to the living – room. The living room is decorated all in wood. There is a fireplace, in the middle of it. It smells nice here. The kitchen is next to it. You can get there through a “secret” door – you have to press button on the wall and you’ll be in the kitchen which is a big one, decorated all in white. When I look around I see the newest devices (that are useful). All is in order, put in the right place. A door leads to the dining – room. It’s a spacious one with a big round wooden table and comfortable chairs. Everywhere there are beautiful flowers and windows so that it always smells of fresh air. From the dining – room a spiral staircase is going up to the second floor. There are bedrooms of all of my family – two for each of my children and a big one for my husband and me. Every bedroom has a huge terrace with a lot of flowers and overlooking the sea. On that floor there is another huge room which is our library – with a lot of books, magazines and a big computer. 

I love listening to music and there is a sound system which helps to hear music in every room in the house. 

I open my eyes. Will my ideal house stay only in my dreams or will it become true? Well, only the time will tell!

Article - Science can be fun!

Sample FCE article on the topic - Science can be fun!

(attending a science conference)

Is science the most boring subject at school for you? I have to confess that I was of the same opinion two weeks ago. My view changed when I attended a science conference for young people in Cardiff. In fact, there were shown many different aspects of science and was given information, which was on completely different topics from the ones we study at school. The three days spent there really opened my eyes to what’s going on in science nowadays and what job opportunities I can find. 

At the conference, I met many students. They were from different countries, so the working language was English, which was an advantage for me. Another thing which impressed me was the various experiments shown to us. I appreciated the efforts of the conductors but I have to say that it was difficult for everyone to observe because there were too many people in such a small laboratory. 

To my great disappointment, the food was too expensive. But if you took your own lunch you’d be OK! I also hope that next year the conference would be hold in a different venue because this year we were far from the town. 

I strongly advise you all to go and see exactly what the possibilities are. This conference presents science in a different light. All the new things you will learn may also change your plans for the future.

Essay - The problem of my generation is .. version 2

The problem of my generation is that we have all the freedom we want but we do not know what to do with it.

There are a lot of problems which have an awful impact on our generation. One of them, probably the most serious, is the one connected with the question “What can we do with our freedom and our spare time?” And everyone gives his own answer, which, in fact, shows his inner world and his attitude to life. 

I don’t think we don’t know what to do with our spare time. Just because we have a lot of freedom, we can do whatever you want. It’s wonderful to feel free and do all sorts of things, forbidden by your parents. You do them for a year or two but then you get exhausted by the non – changing everyday life. Then comes the real problem – some decide to amuse themselves with drugs, alcohol or other things which are very dangerous for their health. These young boys and girls do not understand what they are doing to themselves. They just enjoy their new lives. Others “retire” from their social “social” positions and definitely change their minds. A lot of my friends have suffered such a development that I can’t recognize them. In the past they used to go to discos and other interesting places but now they prefer to stay at home all alone. 

I can understand those people because I belong to their class – we are exhausted from being prematurely grown up and now we just want to turn our attention to ourselves. But that doesn’t mean that we don’t know what to do with our freedom. We know perfectly well how to use it but we are not sure that’s worth. We have found the importance of education and to some extent we have become careerists. It is awful to see how some of your closest friends are becoming complete failures. These are the people who, in fact, don’t know what to do with their freedom and exactly this lack of knowledge has led them to things which will ruin their life. 

I’m happy that we have the freedom but I think it is not a thing for everyone. It is good only for those who are very sensible, can rule their own lives and can avoid the wicked things which surround us.

Essay - new FCE format 2015 - Obesity in young people

 FCE new format 2015 essay - Obesity in young people



Write an essay about the problem of obesity in young people. Write an essay using all notes and give reasons for your point of view.
In Europe and the USA a lot of young people have an obesity problem. What can be done to solve this problem?


Write about:
1. Drinking
2. Fast food
3........ (your own idea)

Sample Answer: 

Many people around the world are suffering from obesity. For me, the solution to this wide-spread problem is breaking the bad habits and starting a new, healthy way of life.
First of all, the majority of teenagers nowadays drink alcohol. They do it for fun at parties, without realising how serious this is. On the one hand, it kills their brain cells and, on the other, it contains a lot of calories and leads to gaining weight. Shops shouldn’t sell alcohol to teenagers and elders should replace it with water and fresh juice.
Moreover, in this busy world we often don’t have the time to sit and eat at home so we buy fast food. Any kind of snacks, burgers and sweets are harmful to us because they contain a lot of fats, used cooking oil and artificial sweeteners. Making a sandwich at home and taking an apple for school or work are possible options. I think the natural products will give us energy and health.
Last but not least, to reach the wanted weight, we have to put our body in a move. Actually, there’s no need to practise a certain sport. Exercise at home or in the park two or three times per week is enough to keep us in shape. Basically, losing weight by training is easier and more pleasant by dieting.
In conclusion everything depends on our own will. Avoiding junk food, reduce drinking and starting to exercise are three great ways to start a new page of your life. Obesity should become a thing of the past and it is our task to make the needed changes for this to become a reality.  

Teacher’s notes:

2nd paragraph: Don’t talk about alcohol in general; only in relation to obesity.
3rd  paragraph: Make clear the connection to obesity.
  • The problems should not be discussed in general but only in relation to obesity.
  • Too long.

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