2023 O’LEVELS ORAL ENGLISH DAY 3: ORAL QUESTION (ENVIRONMENT /NEIGHBOURHOOD)
Video: Candidates were shown a 1-min of Marina Barrage, which some may know as a place of recreation. The rooftop park part of the dam is especially popular with families as they spend time there picnicking and kite flying or simply taking in the stunning sunsets.
How to tackle the Oral Planned Response Question:
For planned response, students must present a 2-minute response (usually this means two PEEL Paragraphs) to answer the question. You can refer to your written notes. Use 5Ws and 1H when you are brainstorming for answers. Be certain to answer the prompt, identify keywords and present your thoughts confidently. Refer to our earlier post on O’levels 1184 Planned Response Format.
Planned Response Question:
“Should there be more of such open spaces in Singapore?” Why or Why not?
Candidates must pay attention to the setting and think where/what is this place/event and what’s going on? Candidates can consider the advantages of having such greenery in a modern city like Singapore where we are often called a concrete jungle. Through sharing of their own personal experiences such as how these open spaces and greenery provide areas for candidates to do recreational activities, exercise, and relaxation, contributing to a healthier and more vibrant lifestyle.
For instance, candidates can express their own preferences for such open spaces as it allows them to step away from their devices or take a break from the monotony of their student lives/studies and go outdoors or how it helps them to reduce stress, anxiety. Others may recount learning journeys they had to green spaces such as Botanic Gardens and how they enjoyed it immensely.
Note: You should address the examiner’s question directly and focus on building two PEEL paragraphs and relate the video (briefly) to the question. The two points for your answers should not be too similar and it should have personal observations / examples. The planned response is around two mins long. (2 PEEL 1 adjective + explain with evidence)
Spoken Interaction (Neighbourhood)
- What suggestions can you give to improve your neighbourhood?
Suggested Approach: Candidates can start with briefly explaining where/what kind of neighbourhood they reside in. Possible ideas include having more cycling paths or existing footpaths to be widened so as to create more space for walking and cycling. Candidates can mention how they feel that more cycling paths will allow them to travel to school safely, reduce morning / peak hours congestion and how these improvements will promote walking and cycling promotes physical activity and a sense of community.
Other candidates may feel strongly that their neighbourhood can have more facilities for youths such as study rooms at void decks, parks with features that appeal to young people, such as skate parks, outdoor fitness equipment, and spaces for creative expression and art installations.
Important Note: You should use strong vocabulary, provide examples / own personal experience to substantiate your points. Do not get flustered if oral examiners ask you additional questions.
Green spaces play a role in climate change resilience by absorbing carbon dioxide and providing shade, helping Singapore adapt to the impacts of climate change.
2) Do you agree that it is important to have greenery in your environment?
State your stand clearly.
Candidates should first point out that in an increasingly urbanized world, cities like Singapore face numerous challenges, including pollution, mental health issues, and declining biodiversity due to urbanisation. Amidst these challenges, the importance of greenery in cities cannot be overstated. Green spaces, such as parks, gardens, and trees, play a pivotal role in enhancing the quality of life for urban dwellers and society as a whole.
For well considered responses, candidates need to point out that Singapore is a land-scarce nation, allocating space for greenery may be challenging (citing the zoning of Bukit Brown and Dover Forest in Ulu Pandan for residential use. Candidates of the opposing view may cite how while greenery / nature is an important buffer against climate change, Singapore being a small nation had to make difficult trade-offs because of its size and to ensure future generations had a place to live.
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