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Forum » Test category » English language forum » Intersting stories (27 different short stories)
Intersting stories
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:47 AM | Message # 1
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Dear visitors and readers please feel free to share your own interesting stories.
 
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:48 AM | Message # 2
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ANIMAL RIGHTS Text for dictation
The British are said to be fond of animals. For many of them a dog or a cat is part of the family and must be well looked after.
Large sums of money are spent on veterinary bills and pet food. A trip to a supermarket will reveal whole aisles dedicated to our animal friends.
However, in the same supermarket, you can find battery chickens which have been factory farmed in cramped conditions and injected with antibiotics to contain disease, growth hormones to fatten them for market and tranquillizers to stop them from going mad.
Aware of the contradictions in their treatment of animals and the risks of mad cow disease, many British people are turning to vegetarian diets. Some have joined animal rights groups and have taken part in protests against the meat trade, especially the export of live animals for slaughter overseas.
 
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:49 AM | Message # 3
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THE ARTS Text for dictation
The Arts cover an extremely wide field. They are encountered both in our education and leisure as we move from childhood to adulthood. Painting, sculpture and modelling are usually met at an early age both as a form of play and at school where they provide release from reading, writing and arithmetic. Literature often appears in the form of bedtime stories. Many children's stories have become classics.
When children reach their teens, they generally develop an interest in cinema. For some this is mainly entertainment provided by Hollywood blockbusters, but others progress to more challenging films. Most school pupils read novels as part of English Literature and are also introduced to Shakespeare, though they are more likely to take an interest in contemporary drama as provided by television soap operas.
A visit to a music store will reveal a sizeable interest in classical music, especially among older people. Opera and ballet appeal to a minority of the population and are usually expensive both to stage and to watch.
 
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:49 AM | Message # 4
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CRIME & PUNISHMENT Text for dictation
The legal process in Britain can be illustrated by examining the crime of shoplifting. Every working day, small shops and large department stores have to protect themselves against this form of theft. Some stores display signs saying "WE ALWAYS PROSECUTE THIEVES", though their managers may have the option of warning shoplifters without reporting the to the police.
If a store manager decides to take a shoplifter to court, the legal process can be both time-consuming and expensive. The lawyer for the prosecution has to prove that the goods were deliberately taken and unpaid for. The lawyer for the defence may argue that the defendant was forgetful or suffering from mental illness. As evidence of non-payment, the manager may have to produce a till roll showing what purchases were made around the time of the alleged crime.
It is the task of the twelve members of the jury to listen to the evidence on both sides and to the judge's summing up. They then retire to a separate room where they have to try to reach a verdict.
If the defendant is found "not guilty", he or she is then acquitted. If a "guilty" verdict is returned, the judge will then pass sentence. The sentence for shoplifting may range from a fine or a suspended sentence for a first offence to a period of imprisonment for a persistent offender.
 
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:51 AM | Message # 5
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CULTURAL DIFFERENCES Text for dictation
Most European countries have multi-racial societies owing both to historical and geographical factors. Military conquests, persecution and economic hardship have all contributed to waves of immigration.
Early British history highlights the influence of the Romans, the Vikings, the Saxons and the Normans. More recently, we have opened our doors to people from our former colonies seeking jobs, refugees seeking political asylum and other members of the European Community.
Racial integration has been successful in many areas of Britain. Intermarriage between people of similar cultures is now very common. The popularity of Chinese and Indian food and support for events such as the Notting Hill Carnival show a further acceptance of cultural differences.
However, good race relations have proved more difficult where there has been large-scale immigration involving dissimilar cultures, especially in areas of social deprivation - for example, where there is poor housing and high unemployment. Not only do immigrants become scapegoats for the problems of these areas, but they, themselves, may be reluctant to integrate for reasons of religion or cultural identity.
 
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:51 AM | Message # 6
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ECONOMICS Text for dictation
Economic Theory, Applied Economics and Economic History provide the social scientist with wide areas of study.
Micro-economic theory is usually introduced through an examination of the principles of demand and supply and how prices are set under conditions ranging from perfect competition to monopoly. Macro-economics operates on a larger scale and deals, for example, with models which governments may use in determining monetary and fiscal policies.
Course books in Applied Economics need to be revised frequently since this area focuses on the actual policies which have been implemented in
recent years. These may include attempts to control incomes, to promote regional development or to protect whole industries from overseas competition.
British Economic History is an especially rich field since we claim to have had the first agricultural and industrial revolutions, to have pioneered the canals and the railways and to have been one of the most important
financial centers in the world. The subject also explores the conditions of the working class, the poor law and early examples of trade unions.
 
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:51 AM | Message # 7
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THE ENVIRONMENT Text for dictation
Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth and the Green Party all campaign for a cleaner, healthier and less polluted environment.
Greenpeace operates internationally and is able to embarrass governments and large oil companies through feats of direct action which attract public sympathy. These may include attempts to block the disposal of radioactive waste at sea or to prevent the siting of a new oil rig.
Friends of the Earth has branches in many towns and cities and is known especially for local initiatives such as recycling tins and newspapers, opposition to road-building schemes and attempts to raise people's awareness of green issues.
The Green Party in Britain has never won a seat in parliament. Nevertheless, the green movement as a whole has had an influence on the agendas of the major political parties. Both the reduction in the tax paid on lead-free petrol and the imposition of VAT on domestic heating have been presented as policies to help the environment.
As more of our streets become jammed up with cars and more of our children suffer from asthma, the need for a greener life-style becomes one of self-interest, not to mention the protection of other species and their habitats.
 
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:51 AM | Message # 8
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EDUCATION Text for dictation
In Britain, school is compulsory between the ages of five and sixteen. Primary education continues until the age of eleven. Pupils wishing to enter university usually finish their secondary education when they are eighteen. Other types of further education are available for those who want to learn a trade such as catering or specialize at an early stage. In recent years, the proportion of young people entering university has risen dramatically. The variety of degree courses on offer has also widened. It is now common for students entering fields such as nursing to be based at university.

Educational terminology can be very confusing. For example, preparatory and public schools are fee-paying and both belong to the independent or private sector. Middle schools, which fall between primary and secondary education, are part of the state system, but do not exist in all parts of Britain. Most state secondary schools are "comprehensives" and are non-selective. However, in some towns, institutions known as grammar schools operate selectively. Children are tested at the age of eleven and the bright ones are creamed off. Many parents argue that grammar schools should be abolished to allow equality of opportunity for all children. Others insist that a fast track is needed for gifted pupils and that diversity means more freedom of choice.
 
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:52 AM | Message # 9
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FASHION Text for dictation
Fashion forms a key part of many of our important industries, especially those involving design, such as cars, computer printers and clothing. In the world of machines, changes in design often accompany technical improvements.
However, new design in clothing is more commonly motivated by fashion. Differences in the climate from season to season and the tendency to equate each new year with a new look provide textiles companies with frequent opportunities to renew their sales.
These marketing opportunities are often realised by associating products with people. Fashion models are highly paid to provide appropriate images of good health, comfortable life-styles, success and beauty.
Fashion is usually regarded as fun and provides the focus of many popular magazines. However, controversy occurs in some instances. The image provided by the fashion model may shock, it may fail to have any connection with the product itself or it may endorse a product such as a fur coat which some people find offensive.
 
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:52 AM | Message # 10
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FOOD Text for dictation
Understanding an English menu depends not only on knowledge of particular dishes, but also on familiarity with cooking techniques. The key to these ways of preparing food is the cooker itself. Contrary to many students expectations, the cooker is not the person who prepares the food - that is the cook - but the machine used to supply heat.
Most cookers have four hot-plates, usually situated on the top surface. Other names for hot-plates are gas or electric rings. These are used for boiling, steaming, poaching, frying and for making chips. Below the hot-plates, you normally find the grill which delivers heat from above.
Grilled bacon and toasted bread are commonly eaten for breakfast in Britain. Below the grill, is a chamber called the oven which is used for roasting and baking. A roast potato is peeled and cooked in oil, while a baked potato remains in its jacket.
Some words on the menu assume more than one process. For example, a mashed potato is created first by boiling and then by mashing - crushing the boiled potato with a fork. Butter is usually added to give the final product a smoother texture.
 
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:53 AM | Message # 11
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HEALTH Text for dictation
In major emergencies such as road traffic accidents, most people in Britain are treated under the National Health Service, known as the NHS. If you are badly injured, you will be taken by ambulance to Accident and Emergency.
Once any bleeding has been stemmed, you will be x-rayed to see if you have broken any bones. If you have fractured your femur or patella, you may be operated on by an orthopaedic surgeon fairly quickly. If you have done serious damage to your pelvis, you may need to be transferred to a large city hospital where surgeons specialize in complex fractures and pelvic reconstruction. Many unlucky motorcyclists require specialist surgery and often their legs are put in traction until they enter the operating theatre.
Soon after the operation, the patient is usually introduced to the physiotherapist. Some patients are put on a special machine which gently moves their knee and hip joints. If progress is maintained, they will be mobilized - moved from bed to wheelchair and then to zimmer-frame or crutches. When they are walking on crutches, they will be taught how to climb steps. Providing their surgical wounds have healed and once they are no longer in pain, they can look forward to their discharge from hospital.
 
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:54 AM | Message # 12
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HOLIDAYS / VACATIONS Text for dictation
In Britain, Tourist Information Centres can arrange short stays in Hotels, Guest Houses and Bed & Breakfast establishments. Bookings can be made either by phone or in person on arrival in large towns or cities. Clients can usually specify the part of town where they want to be based, though this may limit their choice of price-range. It is helpful to state whether you are looking for economical, medium-priced or luxury accommodation. A small deposit is usually required which is returnable if you inspect the room and decide you do not want it. If you take the room, the deposit is deducted from the bill.
For longer stays or holidays in other countries, it is usual to go to a travel agency. You can collect brochures from rival companies which offer packages in the countries and resorts which you are interested in. Many people go home and study the information. The booking forms on the back of the brochures contain the information which the travel agent needs to know, should you wish to go ahead. You will need to decide the number in your party, the resort, the departure date, the duration, the type of accommodation, the eating arrangements ( full board, half board or self-catering ), travel or transport options ( e.g. air or sea ), car hire, equipment hire (e.g. skis), excursions, insurance cover and the method of payment.
When you return to the travel agent, you may have further questions to ask about the facilities for children, elderly or disabled people, the activities available or places of interest within easy reach of your resort. If you have chosen an all-inclusive package you may wish to know whether your investment contributes to the local economy of your holiday resort, whether it brings business and employment to local residents or whether your presence merely helps to exclude them from the best parts of their own beaches.
 
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:54 AM | Message # 13
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LANGUAGE LEARNING Text for dictation

Recent psycholinguistic studies on how people learn languages have been accompanied by emphasis among English language teachers on the learner as an individual. Preferred learning styles are increasingly respected and learner independence is encouraged. For some teachers, non-interference is the key to giving a successful lesson. For others, this is an abdication of the teacher's role and shows ignorance of what can be done to make learning more efficient. If there has been a revolution in language teaching methodology, surely there are some things teachers can do to help learners.
In the past, many of Britain's top schools modelled the teaching of modern languages on the teaching of Latin. Oral fluency was therefore undervalued and accuracy in the written language became the main goal. Your French might be excellent on your school report, but you could still arrive in France and fail to understand a word.
A separate method known as audio-lingualism made its appearance in private language schools. This emphasized the primacy of the spoken word, yet lesson content was mainly structural and contained few of the features of spoken English used as a vehicle for communication. Surely teachers can at least provide learners with good models of target behaviour.
 
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:55 AM | Message # 14
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MALE & FEMALE ROLES Text for dictation
In the British General Election in 1997, some of the most powerful men in the country lost their seats to professionally successful women. One hundred and nineteen women were elected to the House of Commons and five women secured Cabinet posts. By 1997, over a million of Britain's four million small businesses were run by women. Many of these women had left corporate life because of their difficulties in progressing in large organisations, especially in the world of finance, where men are generally favoured for the top managerial posts.
During the twentieth century, women in Britain have had to campaign vigorously for equal rights - the right to education, the right to vote and the right to work in posts traditionally reserved for men. It was largely through war-work that women proved their capabilities.
More recently, they have been outperforming men in public examinations. Women's rights campaigns have focused particularly on language and thought. Terms such as "chairman" have been changed to more neutral descriptions such as "chair" or less ambiguous alternatives such as "president". This is part of the recent concept known as "political correctness".
Some men are careful to avoid accusations of sexism and sexual harassment while others have reacted by campaigning for "men's rights".
 
BakhtiyorDate: Sunday, 2012-06-03, 8:55 AM | Message # 15
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MARRIAGE Text for dictation
Britain has one of the highest marriage and divorce rates in Western Europe. The average age for first marriages is now approximately 28 for men and 26 for women. Nearly 40% of British marriages are remarriages where one or both partners have already been divorced. The average age when divorces occur is about 39 for men and 36 for women. For the Anglican and Catholic churches, marriage is for life, but for between one third and a half of British husbands and wives, marriage is for about ten years.
Nearly a third of British babies are born outside marriage and about half of these are born to couples with stable relationships living at the same address. Attitudes towards different kinds of relationships have become far more liberal in Britain in recent decades. Cohabitation has become far more acceptable and some ministers of the Church of England are even prepared to marry people who have already been divorced. Many couples appreciate the atmosphere and symbolism of a church wedding, though others prefer the simplicity and honesty of a registry office. In other words, they attach little or no importance to the religious aspect of marriage, although they may still want a legal contract.
 
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