This new game Funland invites players to take part in a range of classic fairground games which are designed to help children practise their reading and listening skills. Players have to control the ferris wheel, splash the clowns and collect virtual prizes along the way. Tasks are specially designed to cover levels A1–B1 of the CEFR.
Another first, as users progress through the levels, they can view their personal profile, which provides basic feedback about how long they took to complete the level, how many attempts they made and which exam level this corresponds to, linking through to the relevant exam page on our website.
- It is essential that your students are given plenty of practice in class in participating in group and pair activities. This will help them interact effectively with their partners by initiating discussion and responding appropriately to their partner’s and the interlocutor’s comments and questions. Pair and group activities should, therefore, be a regular part of classroom learning.
- Your students should be made aware that they need to listen carefully to the interlocutor’s questions and instructions and refer to the written prompts on the visuals page to remind them of what they have to do in the tasks.
- Your students should be encouraged to react to visuals they are given to support the tasks, and relate the visuals to the tasks rather than simply describe them.
- Your students should be familiar with the test format and be fully aware of what is expected of them in each part. They should also be equipped with the right kind of language for each part of the test, e.g. giving personal information, exchanging information and opinions, giving reasons, speculating, agreeing and disagreeing politely, justifying opinions and negotiating. This will ensure that they are in a good position to show the examiners what they are capable of.
- Encourage your students to speak clearly so that they can be heard by both the interlocutor and the assessor.
- It is essential that students do not pause for too long before they begin speaking. A short pause to gather their thoughts is acceptable, but anything longer than this will give them less time to produce a sample of language. Being able to paraphrase if they do not know or cannot remember a word, and extending their responses rather than giving a one-word answer, will help your students participate more effectively in the Speaking test.
- Give your students a ‘mock’ Speaking test so that they experience taking part in an interaction of this length and understand how they have to move between different types of interaction and task focus.
- To ensure that all candidates are treated in the same way, the interlocutor keeps to a scripted frame (as shown in the sample papers). However, you can remind your students that they can ask the examiner to repeat the instructions or a question.
N.B. In some centres candidates from the same school are paired together. However, where candidates from a number of different schools are entered at the same centre, some candidates may find that they are paired with a candidate from another school. Students may check with the centre through which they are entering for the local procedure, if they wish
As part of our centenary celebrations, Cambridge English Language Assessment invites you and your students to choose from ten inspiring projects to do in class. Each project is supported by ten classroom activities – so 100 activities for 100 years – each designed to engage and motivate your students with their English language learning.
By telling us all about your project, you can win educational equipment worth £3,000. We will also publish the best entries on our website.
For more information and to sign up to the competition, visit www.cambridgeenglish.org/centenarycompetition.
- The instructions for each task are given on the question paper and are also heard on the recording. This includes information about the speakers, the topic and the context of the text. Before each text is heard, candidates will have time to read through and think about the questions. The length of this preparation time is indicated on the tape. Candidates should use this time to familiarise themselves with the task and begin to make predictions about what they are likely to hear.
- A variety of voices, styles of delivery and accents will be heard in each Listening paper to eflect the various contexts presented in the recordings.
- Classroom discussion activities in the target language provide an invaluable source of listening practice. Students’ ability to understand what they hear can improve dramatically if they are regularly exposed to audio materials: the more English they hear, delivered at natural speed in a variety of voices and contexts, the more confident they will become in extracting key information and gist meaning, even when they are not able to decode every single word or phrase. These skills are essential to learners at Cambridge English: Advanced level.
- A daily learning programme which includes a ‘hearing English’ component from audio recordings will help prepare your students for the Listening test. Your students should be exposed to varieties of English, to speakers of different ages and backgrounds and to the language of different contexts, e.g. formal announcements, lectures, less formal talks, informal discussions, interviews, etc.
- Your students should be encouraged to deal with texts in different ways depending on the nature of the listening task. For example, they might listen to a text once for gist, producing a summary of the main ideas or attitudes expressed. They could then be asked to listen to the same text again, this time retrieving specific information.
- Make your students aware of how much they themselves bring to a listening task. Encourage them to make predictions about listening texts from their own experience and world knowledge. The instruction provides information about the speaker, topic and context. Encourage your students to use this information to help them tune into the text quickly when they hear it. Remind your students that they should use the pause before each recording to read through the task carefully, so they are prepared for what they hear. Encourage them to use the task on the question paper to guide them through the listening text and keep their place as they answer the questions.
- Remind your students that in long texts, the questions come in the same order as the information in the recording, and therefore reflect the structure of the text. Help them to identify discourse markers, interviewers’ questions and other textual features that structure a text and are often reflected in the layout and wording of the task on the page.
- Remind your students that in sentence-completion tasks they should write their answers clearly in CAPITAL LETTERS.
- Encourage your students to answer all the questions, even if they are not sure, as there are no marks deducted for wrong answers and it may be that they have understood more than they think.
Cambridge English Language Assessment and Bell are running two competitions in 2013, one for teachers and one for students between 12–17 years old. Both competitions are offering prizes of courses in the UK in summer 2013 offered by Bell.
Win a two-week teaching course in Cambridge in July 2013
There are three scholarships available for teachers who are committed to raising the standards of English teaching via their own professional development.
You just need to describe how you have put blended learning (i.e. combining online and classroom learning) or technology into practice to help your students prepare for an exam. How did you know this method was successful? (300 words maximum).
Win a two-week English language course in the UK in July–August 2013
There are two scholarships available for students aged between 12 and 17 who are committed to English language learning.
You just need to describe an idea for using television to prepare for a Cambridge English exam (200 words maximum).
- The texts in Parts 1, 2 and 3 all have titles. Encourage your students to pay attention to each title as it will indicate the main theme of the text.
- Encourage your students to read through each text (Parts 1, 2 and 3) carefully before beginning to answer the questions so that they have a clear idea of what it is about.
- In Parts 2 and 5, there may be more than one permissible answer for a question. However, students should only give one answer for each question. If they give two answers, and one of them is incorrect, they will not be given a mark. If they want to change an answer, they should rub it out.
- All parts of the paper have detailed instructions and completed examples. These should be studied carefully so that your students know what kind of answers they are expected to give and how they should show them on the answer sheet.
- Your students should be encouraged to read extensively so that they build up a wide vocabulary and become familiar with the many uses of different structures. This should enable them to deal with a range of lexical items and grammatical structures in a variety of text types.
- When studying for the paper, it will be useful for your students to refer to dictionaries and grammar books. However, they should also develop strategies for operating independently of reference books (by, for example, guessing the meaning of unknown words from the context) as they are not permitted to take dictionaries into the exam with them.
- Students should develop an efficient personal system for recording the new vocabulary they learn. They should record as much detail as possible, including information about complementation and collocations of the words learned.
- Encourage your students to plan their time carefully and not to spend too long on any one part of the test. They should try to make sure that they have a few minutes at the end of the test to check through their answers. They can do the various parts of the test in any order, but it may be better to do them in the order of the question paper so as to avoid the possibility of putting answers in the wrong sections of the answer sheet.
- Remind your students to check the spelling of their answers as incorrect spelling will lose them marks.
- Remind your students that handwriting should be clear so that it can be read easily by the markers.
- Give your students practice in completing the answer sheet. When writing their answers on the answer sheet, they must be careful to make sure that they put the answer by the appropriate question number. This is especially important if they leave some questions unanswered. They must also be sure to write in capital letters in Parts 2, 3, 4 and 5.
Wir bedanken uns recht herzlich bei unserer Praktikantin Natacha Imhof! Sie hat uns in den letzten Monaten tatkräftig unterstützt und war immer zur Stelle, wenn Hilfe benötigt wurde. Wir wünschen ihr alles Gute für ihre Zukunft! Natürlich haben wir sie auch gebeten ein paar Zeilen zum Praktikum zu verfassen:
“Mein Praktikum bei Cambridge English Language Assessment fand in Berlin – Steglitz statt. Ich began jeden Tag um 9:00 Uhr und habe ein Vollzeit-Praktikum absolviert, weil ich mein Deutsch verbessern möchte, denn ich komme aus dem französischsprachigen Teil der Schweiz. Wir sind insgesamt fünf Personen im Büro. Es ist ein kleines Büro, aber mit einer sehr angenehmen Atmosphäre. Die Leute sind sehr nett und helfen bei Fragen immer weiter.
Das Marketing ist ein sehr wichtiger Bereich in diesem Büro. Es geht darum Personen zu den verschiedenen Cambridge Prüfungen zu informieren, zu beraten und Anfragen zu beantworten. Neben Marketing hatte ich auch mit Büroorganisation zu tun. Ich habe Tabellen erstellt, Materialen für Schulen zusammengestellt und das Feedback von verschiedenen Seminaren bearbeitet. Außerdem habe ich an Webinaren teilgenommen, um mich weiter zu informieren. Ich war auch auf einer Hochschul- und einer Bildungsmesse, was sehr interessant war.
Dieses sind nur einige Beispiele von Aufgaben in meinem Alltag im Büro. Die Arbeit war sehr abwechslungsreich, interessant und es gab keine Langeweile. Dieses Praktikum war eine sehr gute Gelegenheit für mich und ich konnte ich jeden Tag mein Deutsch und ein wenig mein Englisch verbessern.
Nach meiner Ausbildung in der Schweiz habe ich die Berufsmaturität gemacht und im Sommer einige Monate in einem Geschäft gearbeitet. Ich war Verkäuferin und Beraterin für Geschenkboxen. Dann habe ich bemerkt, dass ich bessere Chancen auf eine Arbeitstelle habe, wenn ich einige Fremdsprachen beherrsche. Deswegen bin ich hier nach Berlin gekommen und ich habe diese Möglichkeit eines Praktikums sehr toll gefunden. Ich war sehr zufrieden mit meiner Wahl und ich habe auch viel über die Cambridge-Zertifikate gelernt.
Sprachen sind heute sehr wichtig in der Arbeitswelt und ich finde es toll, wenn man viele Sprachen sprechen kann. Deshalb möchte ich mich gern weiterbilden und auch einige Sprachzertifikate machen.”