Maturita - ústna časť

Town and country


There are many places to live all over the world. There are large cities like Tokyo, Mexico City or Rio. But there are also out of the way places like Siberia, the Serengeti Plains and the Amazon jungle. Wherever they live, people always have opinions about other places, even though they have probably only seen them in pictures or on TV.

 Europeans usually think large cities on the East Coast of the USA, like New York, Philadelphia, and Boston, are the most important, and East Coast states, such as Maine or Vermont, have a most traditional way of life. People living there are thought to be more educated and more interested in art, literature and music than people who live in other parts of the US.

 Different places in the world are famous for different reasons. New York city is famous for its parades, One of the most famous is the annual Macy´s Thanksgiving Day parade, which is shown on television. In the UK, people often think of Trafalgar Square as a place where you can go to feed the pigeons. There is also a stereotype about people from the North of England who keep pigeons and race them, to see which pigeon returns home first. Sometimes, when people in the US talk about the Rockies, they mean all the states where the Rocky Mountains are, such as Montana, Idaho, Wyoming etc. The stereotype of someone who lives in these states is a man who works on a cattle ranch and wears jeans, cowboy boots, and a Stetson (the type of hat that cowboys wear). The south of France is known as a place for the rich and famous to go on holiday. It seems the most popular places from them to visit are still places like Cannes, Nice, and St. Tropez.

Spas became very fashionable places in the UK and Europe in the 18th and 19th centuries. People still visit spas, even though in Britain it´s more to look at the old buildings than to go in the water. The most famous English spa is in Bath, in SW England. In Slovakia, people believe in the curative effects of water and mud and people spend 3-week stays getting different treatments, massages and just relaxing. Pieštany is famous for helping people who suffer from rheumatism, Bardejov for diabetes and stomach aches, and Trenčianske Teplice for problems with locomotors apparatus.

 Most people know that big cities are usually divided into different parts. The East End of London is thought of as a working class area where people called cockneys live. It is also known for its street markets, including Petticoat Lane and Brick Lane. But since the 1980s, many businesses and middle class people have moved in to parts of the East End, especially the docklands, so the character of the area has changed.

 Suburbs are the residential areas around a city but which often have a different name from that city. All the houses have similar designs and almost always have gardens. Usually ordinary middle-class families live in the suburbs. Most of the families own their home rather than renting it. Suburbia is generally considered to be a boring but safe place to live.

 Some people thing living in a village would be great because they would know all their neighbors and be out in the country too, other people wouldn´t like everybody to know what´s going on in their lives. In American English, the word village is used when talking about a small old town in Europe or a small area of simple houses in a less developed country. In British English, however, village is used for small towns in general, whether they are new, busy, old, or quiet.

 It seems that many people all over the world want to live in bigger communities. Country folks move to towns and cities for employment and a better life. And sometimes, an entire nation wants to be a part of something bigger. In Europe, that “something bigger” is the European Union.

Úlohy na samoštúdium

Extra otázky:

1. What are popular places for adults to socialize in your city?
2. Which significant spots should be included in a guided tour of your city? 
3. Would you rather live in the city or the countryside? 
4. What problems do people face in the city you live in? 
5. What is your dream place to visit? 
6. What place would you like not to visit? 
7. List the main differences between urban and rural settlements in Slovakia. 
8. What do you think you will have to cope with if you move to a new town to study? 
9. Name things that make living in a village more/ less attractive. 


You would like to visit Britain this summer because of the famous sights you have learnt about. Your parents do not agree because their idea is to see ancient Greece or Egypt and to visit the places of history. Convince your parents about your choice.   

Your son/daughter wants you to go to Britain during summer holidays. You are not interests in Stonehenge, Dover or London sights. You prefer to feel the atmosphere of ancient Greece or Egypt. You have read a lot of books about them and your dream is to visit these places in your life. Persuade your child to change his/ her mind.  


Think of a city which you can “twin” with your own city/town/village. What would you consider a twin city? Which similarities would you search for? What different aspects would you respect? What would you recommend to do to make them less different? Explain your choice to you teachers. Give reasons. 


Look at the pictures below and compare them. Say what you think it would be like to live in these places. Support your ideas with reasons. 


1. Obrázky -
2. Bérešová J. a kol. (2008) Nová maturita z angličtiny - Vyššia úroveň B2
3. Kálaziová I. (2019) Úspešná maturita - Anglický jazyk - úroveň B2
4. Bérešová J. (2005) Nová maturita - Anglický jazyk - Interná časť 


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