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IELTS Preparation Series 2, Episode 18: Outback Tourism


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Hello. I'm Margot Politis. Welcome to Study English, IELTS preparation.

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Today we're going to look at a story about trees in Melbourne. Trees have certain functions.

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They provide shade and shelter, they give scale to the tall buildings and they demonstrate

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the changing seasons.

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English is no different! It has a range of functions, or purposes. When you reach a certain

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stage in your language development, you'll need to focus more on the meaning and functions

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of English at the sentence level, and also how to connect sentences. With practice, your

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fluency and competence in both spoken and written English will develop.

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John Hawker, who is a horticulturalist with Heritage Victoria, is concerned that the old

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trees planted in Melbourne in the 1850s are nearing the end of their lives. Listen to

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John discussing the problem of managing trees in urban areas.

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Trees are very much a part of our urban fabric. People enjoy them for their size, variety

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and colour and form, so we'd just be left with nothing, which would be disastrous.

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There's a need to assess the health and the condition of these trees and embark upon a

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removal and a replacement program.

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We'll be helping the City of Melbourne doing that assessment and we'll be identifying where,

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what trees should be replanted.

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John is discussing the problems of old trees in Melbourne.

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He begins with a statement of fact:

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People enjoy trees for their size, variety, colour and form.

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He follows this statement with an opinion:

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To allow these old trees to die and not replace them would be disastrous.

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Can you see the purpose or function of these two sentences? John is building a persuasive

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argument about trees. He begins with a fact, and then adds an opinion.

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Now he goes on to list some of the problems faced by these trees. The function of this

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sentence will be to support his argument with reasons.

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Listen to the causes of the problem.

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Well, there are quite a few problems with some of the trees.

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Firstly, the trees, some are very old and nearing the end of their life. That's been

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hastened to some extent by recent very dry conditions in Melbourne and other environmental

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factors.</