IELTS 2016 August Speaking Test Part 3 Questions & Answers | Free Time Activities, Video Games, Technology

IELTS Speaking Test Part 3

Free time activities

Do you think it’s important for people to do outdoor activities?

In general, yes, it’s a good idea to get outside and breathe some fresh air. A lot of people spend most of their day inside, especially if they’re working in an office. Like myself, I am inside most of the day almost every day at work. So it’s nice to see something different and also feel the breeze and sun on your skin when you spend time outside.

What benefits can it have?

Personally I love to spend time in the countryside, away from the city, because being outside there just makes me feel so much better. The city can be stifling, so the change is good, it’s refreshing.

So I suppose there are some serious health benefits, the air can be fresher outside, the change of scenery can make you feel happier or more relaxed, and just being in a different environment can sometimes help re-energize you and make you feel better in general.

Have the kind of free time activities people do in your country changed in recent years?

For some people that might be true, especially younger people. But many older people still do the same activities in their free time as they’ve always done. There are some activities which have always been popular, especially sports, so they haven’t changed much at all.

But there are also some newer activities, like the Pilates class I was telling you about that wasn’t available when, for example, my mother was growing up. I guess it’s a case of there just being more options now rather than activities changing.

I think younger people probably change their activities more often, following current trends, and because they like to try new things quite often, they’re more adventurous, and nowadays there’s a lot more choice than in the past as to what activities you can do in your free time.

Can you explain why you think these changes have happened?

Well, it’s the same with everything, isn’t it? New things come along and become popular with a new generation and then they gradually become a normal part of everyday life. Some of the changes are influenced by external sources such as technology. I mean, young people see things on YouTube or other social media sites and they think it’s interesting and want to try it.

If there’s enough demand then usually it becomes popular and then you see lots of places all over offering the same activity. It’s mainly the young people who drive the change because they’re the ones who want to try different things.

Technology has changed what many people now do in their free time. Do you think this change is positive or negative? Why?

Yes, it’s true, my brother is a gaming geek, he’s always playing online and he’s been like that since he was a young boy. But it’s not just gaming – I mean even I spend loads of time texting my friends and chatting on social media, a lot more time than even just a few years ago, so yes, technology now occupies a bigger part of my day than when I was a teenager, for example.

Is it a good thing? Well, it’s just a change, I’ve never really thought about it being positive or negative, in fact really it’s so normal now for people to be using their phones and computers all the time that it’s not really important if it’s a positive or negative thing – it’s already become normal, and I don’t think that will change, unless the technology changes.

Many children spend a lot of time playing video games these days. Is this a good thing? Why? Why not?

Personally, I think it’s a good thing. It’s like they can enter another world, a completely different environment, and escape from everyday life for a while. I actually think it’s very similar to reading a book – you know how if you’re reading a great story, the time just flies past and you don’t want to be disturbed – video games are like that. They can completely hold your attention for ages, and it’s like nothing else exists.

I told you my brother is a gaming fanatic, so I know what it’s like – and he’s just a regular normal person, but in his free time he prefers to be playing games rather than, say, reading or playing soccer, or something like that.

What’s important is that if people enjoy something, then they should do it. There used to be a lot of criticism about children playing video games, but most of it came from adults who didn’t understand the attraction of these games.

And of course they used to say it was a waste of time – but now you see gamers earning a lot of money and some even making a career out of video gaming, so all those people who used to say it was a waste of time were wrong.

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