Maturitní otázky do angličtiny otázka 6 - 9

30. srpna 2007 v 20:31 |  Maturitní otázky - Angličtina

6. a Interests and free time activities

There are so many hobbies. Some hobbies are rather expensive, some are dangerous, some are very time-consuming.
Many people like to spend their free time reading books, magazines or newspapers. Some people love listening to music. Many people spend ages in front of TV or a video. Going out can be very expensive now. If you go to the cinema, to a concert, to a theatre, you need a lot of money.
When I was a small boy, I had more time for my hobbies than now. Now I have no time for myself because I have to learn for my final exam and I spend a lot of time with my girlfriend. But I have many interests and free time activities, so I am very happy when weekend starts of I have holidays.
I really do love reading books but they are so expensive! My favorite genre of literature is fantasy and sci-fi. I have already read so many books that I cannot remember them. I remember only the best ones.
I love listening to music. I listen to pop music, a bit to rock music. My favorite pop group is ROXETTE.
I think it is nothing better than to go somewhere with my friends. I love going around the town, to the cinema.
I am trying to play the guitar but I have no time for it. It seems to me I am a small virtuoso.
I enjoy riding a bike, a motorbike or a car, swimming, playing table tennis, practicing all sports.

6. b The political system of Great Britain

The UK of Great Britain and Northern Ireland has been the official title of the British state ever since 1922.
The UK is constitutional monarchy. This means that the official head of state is the monarch, but his or her powers are limited by the constitution. The British constitution is not written in any single document. Only some of these rules are written down in the form of ordinary laws passed by Parliament at various times.
Parliament is the supreme law-making body in the country. It consists of the House of Commons and the House of Lords. British parliamentary system is one of the oldest in the world, it developed slowly during the 13th century after King John's signature of Magna Charta in 1215.
The Commons has 650, elected and paid Members of Parliament. The Lords is made up of hereditary and life peers, two archbishops and 24 bishops of the Church of England.
The major part of Parliament's work is revising the Government's work. From Monday to Thursday all ministers must answer MP´s questions for one hour, the Prime Minister must answer their questions two days a week.
Another important parliamentary task is law-making. A bill (a proposal of a new law) must pass through the Houses and then is sent to the Queen for Royal Assent.
General elections to choose MP´s are held every five years. Voting is not compulsory and is from the age of 18. In 1997 won the Labour Party headed by Tony Blair.
The Government is formed by the party which ahs the majority in the Parliament and the Queen appoints its leader as the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister appoints a team of main ministers as the Cabinet (about 20 people).
The second largest party form the official opposition with its own leader and "shadow cabinet". At present it is the Conservative Party headed by John Major. The third party represented in the Parliament are the Liberals.
British national flag is called "Union Jack". It symbolizes the Union of England, Scotland and Ireland and dates back from 1801 (George, Andrew, Patrick Cross). National anthem is "God Save The Queen". Each part of the UK has its own symbol:
England - red rose
Ireland - shamrock
Wales - leek, daffodil
Scotland - thistle

7. a Learning foreign languages

Studying foreign languages is important for everybody. We have many reasons to study them. We need it for travelling abroad, for reading foreign materials (books, newspapers, magazines), for business communication, for corresponding with our friends or for cultural reasons (watching films, visiting concerts and exhibitions).
The most important language for the world communication is English. It's spoken in many parts of the world, mainly in Great Britain, the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand (and also in Malta and Gibraltar). We can find English expressions more and more at present - in technical and electronic scientific circles people use many English abbreviations (zkratka) and expressions, computer programs and games are in English.
English is very popular and important now but we also have opportunities for studying other foreign languages. Only around 14 million people speak Czech all over the world, that is why we have to study foreign languages if we want to make ourselves understood. In our country we study mainly German, French, Spanish and Russian. We begin studying them at basic school.
Today, English is one of the major languages in the world. It is difficult to imagine that 300 years ago only a few million people spoke English, the language was not so important for other European nations and was unknown to the rest of the world.
English has become a world language because of its establishment (ustanovení, zřízení) as a mother tongue outside England, in all the continents of the world. The exporting of English began in the 17thcentury, with the first settlements in North America. The great growth of population in the USA and massive immigration in the 19th and 20th centuries have given English its present standing in the world.
People who speak English fall into one of three groups: those who have learned it as their native language; those who have learned it as a second language in a society that is mainly bilingual; and those who are forced to use it for a practical purpose (účel, cíl) - administrative, professional or educational.
Basic characteristics of English
Simplicity of form: Over the centuries words have been simplified.
Flexibility: The same word can operate as many different parts of speech. Many nouns and verbs have the same form, f. e. swim, drink, walk, kiss, look and smile.
Openness of vocabulary: This involves (zahrnuje) the free admissions (vstup) of words from other languages and the easy creation of compounds (složenina) and derivatives (odvozeniny).
The future of English: Geographically, English is the most widespread (rozšířený) language on Earth. And it is the second language behind Mandarin Chinese in the number of people who speak it. It is the language of business, technology, sport, and so on. This will no doubt (bezpochyby) continue, although the proposition (tvrzení) that all other languages will die out is absurd.

7. b History of the UK

The Celts arrived to England 2 500 years ago. In the 1st century was England added to the Roman Empire. They remained there for almost four centuries. After that the German tribes came - the Angles, the Saxons, the Juts. They had to fight with the Vikings, who came to loot and to kill. In the 11th century William the Conqueror defeated the Saxon King Harold in the Battle of Hastings and established a strong kingdom with the Normans in high positions.
The opposition by nobles forced King John to sign Magna Charta in the beginning of the 13th century. Magna Charta was a guarantee of rights and the rule of law. During the 13th century the parliamentary system slowly developed. In the 14th century was in England the War of the Roses.
Under the rule of Queen Elizabeth I. England became a major sea power and started its colonial politics. During the 17th century England and Scotland were ruled by one monarch but remained separate. In about 1640 there was a bloody Civil War between the Parliament and the Stuart Kings, which won Oliver Cromwell. He established a republic. The monarchy was restored in 1660 but the "glorious Revolution" confirmed the sovereignty of the Parliament.
In the 19th century Britain became the greatest colonial power. In the first World War the UK suffered great causalities and huge economic losses.
Ireland became independent in 1921. India also became independent.
The World War II was a great period of heroism, but GB lost its leading position in the world and in the post-war period lost also its colonies.

8. a School and study

In our country school attendance is compulsory from the age of 6 or 7 till 15 or 16. School are mainly state schools, but there are also some private and church schools. Attendance at state schools is free of charge and provide the same kind of education with the possibility of enrolling at universities.
Primary education starts at basic schools and lasts now 9 years. Children learn there writing, counting, reading, Czech language and literature, etc. Secondary education lasts usually 4 years. The types of secondary schools are following: secondary grammar schools, secondary special schools for example technical schools, schools of economic, agriculture schools, music schools, schools for health workers etc. and vocational schools which prepare young people for practical professions. Tertiary education starts at the age of 18 or 19 and lasts usually from 4 to 6 years. Students may attend various universities or colleges for example Technical College, Law Faculty, Medical Faculty, School of Economic etc.
In Britain all children and young people between the ages of 5 and 16 must get full-time education. They receive their education at schools supported by public funds or at private or church schools. The principal examination at about the age of 16 is the General Certificate of Secondary Education. More than a third of young people receive some form of part-school education. Those, who want study at the universities, can choose from more ones and the most known are in Oxford and Cambridge - they are the oldest ant the most famous.
In the USA there is not a national system of education. Each of the 50 states has its own laws regulating education. Every child gets minimum 13 years of education. The goal of studies at secondary schools, which are also called "high schools", is to get a high school diploma. Students should take on average 17 or over 20 units during their studies. Marks in most US schools are A, B, C, D, E.
I attend Commercial High School. The education here lasts 4 years and it ends with graduation exam. We have to pass an obligatory exam in Czech, in Economic, in Accountancy and in one subject from three ones which we can choose. The subjects are Math, English, German. I have chosen English.

8. b The business letter

The form of business letter is different from the form of private correspondence.
Business letters are usually written on official paper with a letterhead. The sender's address is in the top right - hand corner above the date. The letter starts with the addressee's address on the left hand side of the page. Below it you must fill in "Your" and "Our reference", it is the number or abbreviation under which the copy of the letter has been filed and the initials of the member of the staff or his typist.
In a letter to a firm, the formal greeting is "Dear Sirs" in Britain and "Gentlemen" in the USA or Canada. After the greeting can be comma in British letters and a colon in USA letters. The message begins, for example "We are pleased to inform you that...".
The letter is closed with "Yours faithfully" in Britain and "Yours truly" in the USA.
On the envelope is the return address in the left - hand corner. Under the return address are the postal instructions, for example "Pleas forward" or "Express post". In the right - hand corner is postage stamp above the addressee's address.

9. a Culture and entertainment

In Prague there are many possibilities to go somewhere. The only obstacle is money.
In Prague there are about 60 theatres. I go to the theatre once a month. Last time I was at the National Theatre to see the play called Sluha dvou pánů. It is a play by Carlo Goldoni. The leading role was played by Miroslav Donutil. It was a comedy and absolutely amazing. I was laughing during the performance very much.
You can also go to the cinema. I recommend the cinema Galaxy. It is quite a new cinema, multicinema. I don't go to the cinema often. I would go more often but it is expensive for me.
Last time I saw....
I do not go a lot to the galleries and the museums. I used to go with my parents when I was small. I recommend the National Museum and the National Gallery.
There are many concerts in Prague every week. I go to the concerts occasionally, rather exceptionally because it costs a lot of money.
There are many exhibitions in Prague, too. The center of the exhibitions is in Holešovice in the Exhibition Hall. But the largest place for exhibitions is in Brno. I was there at INVEX. It is an exhibition for computers and computer technique. I spent there the whole day. It was very interesting.
In Prague you can visit the Viewtower of Petřín, the ZOO in Trója.

9. b British Mass Media

British people are great readers of newspapers. Britain is one of the few countries where daily newspapers are delivered at the door before breakfast.
There are national, regional, and local newspapers, dailies and weeklies, morning and evening papers.
The national papers can be divided into two main groups: quality paper and popular papers. Some popular papers are called "tabloids". Quality papers like The Times, The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian, The Independent, The Observer, The Financial Times, The Sunday Times and The Sunday Telegraph report national and international news very thoroughly, with analysis and comment on economic, political and social issues. The best-selling paper is The Daily Telegraph with a circulation over one million.
The popular papers tend to make news sensational, but their main interest is entertainment, show business gossip, sport and sensational sex scandals. The Sun is Britain's most popular daily paper. The weekly News of the World has the largest circulation in the western world. Much of its information concerns the private lives of people who are in the news.
Newspapers are almost always financially independent of any political party, but most of them have some political bias. Most of Britain national papers are right-wing.
A modern newspaper could not be sold at a profit without advertisements. A single copy costs more to produce than is the price paid by the reader.
Most newspapers are issued daily, but there are also 7 000 periodicals published in the UK. Of those, women's magazines Woman and Woman's Own have the largest circulation. There are magazines and journals for almost every trade, profession, sport, hobby or interest.
There are a number of news agencies in London. The oldest of them is Reuters, which was founded in 1851 by the German, Julius Reuter. Reuters is now used by newspapers all over the world.
The most important radio and TV company in GB is the BBC. Its activities are paid from the licenses, which everyone who owns or rents a TV set has to pay.
The BBC has 2 TV channels: BBC 1 and BBC 2, BBC1 programmes consist largely of lighter plays and series, humor and sports. BBC 2 offers more serious programmes - documentaries and discussions, operas and concerts.
There are four BBC radio channels, each of which specializes. Radio 1 has mainly pop music, Radio 2 light music, comedy and sport, Radio 3 has classical music, talks on serious subjects and plays. Radio 4 specializes in the spoken word - news reports, talks and discussions. In addition the BBC has a number of local radio stations. The BBC also broadcasts news and information to countries all over the world.
Besides BBC 1 and BBC 2 there are two other TV channels: ITV and Channel 4.
 

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