1(1) Letís talk about shopping and money. What do you know about the history of money?
At first people bartered, which means they exchanged things they had for things they needed. A farmer who had cattle wanted to have salt, so cattle became a form of money. Throughout their history people have used different things as money: knives and rice in China, cattle in Babylonia, tobacco in America, whalesí teeth and shells on the Pacific islands. The first government to make coins that looked alike and use them as money was probably the city of Lydia in Ancient Greece. The coins were made from a mixture of gold and silver. But they were heavy and difficult to carry, and the cities and the roads of Europe were dangerous places to carry huge purses with gold. In the early 1700s, Franceís government became the first in Europe to make paper money - banknotes or bills as they say in the US. But paper money, as well as first coins ever, was invented in China, where traveller Marco Polo saw it in the 1280s. Now people carry plastic credit cards in their wallets instead of cash, which makes travelling even safer and more convenient.
1(2) Do you like shopping? Why (not)?
for girls: It depends. If shopping is a part of my everyday life it is boring and I do it very seldom. If shopping with my friends, itís a pleasure pastime or even entertainment for us. We can spend hours and hours dropping in at one shop after another in search of something special or unusual.
for boys: I should say that I am one of those boys who hate shopping and the idea of doing the shopping drives me mad, though, of course, I like delicious food and nice clothes. My mum does it instead of me. She knows what to buy and where to buy at a cheaper price. I dislike shopping for two reasons. The first reason is more than often I buy things that I practically donít need. The second one is I canít stand overcrowded shops.
1(3) / 4(3) What questions will you ask a shop assistant to help you to choose a purchase?
1. I am looking for a pullover (a dress, jeans). Can you show me ones?
2. How much are they?
3. I think they fit me well, donít they?
4. Have you got another size?
5. Does the blue jacket match the jeans or does the yellow?
1(4) What can you advise a person who wants to buy many things (clothes, foodstuffs, etc.) but has little time?
If you want to buy many things, but you have little time, I would advise you either to go to the supermarket or to make purchases on line. A supermarket usually offers you a wide choice of goods and you can buy food, clothes, books, disks and others things under a single roof. Buying goods on line is very fast and convenient. What is more you donít even have to leave you house. It helps you save much time and effort and encourages you to purchase more products. In conclusion, I want to say that nowadays everything is done in order to make shopping more convenient.
1(5) / 3(5) Parents usually give pocket money to their children. How do you usually spend your pocket money?
A number of people believe that pocket money teaches teenagers to be responsible, others say that teenagers are too young to deal with money and that their parents should buy them what they need. As for my parents they always give me money pay for school meals and when I ask for it like when I go out with my friends. Some of the money is saved, so I can buy little things for myself such as CDs, posters books, hair stuff, magazines and so on. Personally, I think that by giving pocket money parents help children learn to manage money while they are young
2(1) / 4(1) Letís talk about shopping. Who does the shopping in your family?
In our family itís my mother who does most of the shopping, but sometimes itís my fatherís responsibility. Unfortunately my parents have different attitude to shopping. My mum likes it. To her mind, it is a wonderful leisure activity. She often goes shopping just to pass the time to get pleasure. However my dad hates shopping and considers it to be a terrible waste of time and money. Moreover it drives him crazy to look for the things he needs and to wait in long lines to buy them. So my parents prefer small shops to big ones but sometimes they have to go to the nearest supermarket, which usually offers a wide choice of goods and they can buy food, clothe, electrical goods, books, disks and other things under a single roof. Finally I want to say that nowadays everything is done in order to make shopping more convenient
2(2) Is Minsk a shopperís paradise? Why (not)?
Itís not a secret that in big cities there are all kinds of shops and stores as well as supermarkets and markets. Practically, everything a family needs can be found in Minsk. The shops offer a wide range of goods and food at low and high prices. But unfortunately high-quality goods cost a lot. In my opinion it is a controversial question. On the one hand, we can choose whatever you like, on the other hand, we can afford it because of the prices.
2(3) What questions will you ask your friend who has bought an expensive telephone?
1. How much is your telephone?
2. Have you bought the telephone yourself or has anybody given it to you as a gift?
3. What can you do with the help of the telephone?
4. I suppose, you are always busy playing games, arenít you?
5. I wonder if you are glad to leave such a mobile phone.
2(4) What can you advise a teenager who wants to buy a birthday present for his/her friend?
I think that the choice of a birthday present depends on a person who gets it. For girl you can buy flowers, magazines or a good book. A fantastic collection of glass things is a good choice too. If it is a boy you had better given him a stylish tie or a scarf. Boxing gloves and a tennis rocket are nice presents if he does sports. Though teenagers may be difficult to buy for - but CDs teamed with posters and pop calendars will be top of the pops. And finally beautifully packed sweets in special birthday boxes make ideal presents for everybody.
2(5) Some teenager think that parents should pay them for doing their household chores. Do you share their opinion?
Personally I completely disagree. Paying to do chores is a mistake. They will start asking money for everything. Itís their duty to tidy up their rooms, to wash up, to go shopping when their parents are busy. They should learn to be responsible. Frankly speaking I am not payed for my housework, but I regularly get a small amount of pocket money.
3(1) Letís talk about shopping. Are you a shopaholic?
Many people, especially women, consider shopping to be a leisure activity. They go shopping to past the time and to get pleasure. However, love for shopping is all right until it turns into addiction. They are so addicted to shopping that they often make useless and unplanned purchases. We call such people shopaholics. I should say that I am one of those boys (girls) who hate shopping and the idea of doing the shopping drives me mad, though, of course, I like delicious food and nice clothes. It means somebody has to do it for me. I seldom go shopping, but I know where this or that thing can be bought. If I want to save time, I go to the nearest foodstore where I can buy everything I need: bread, milk, sugar, eggs, butter and so on. I prefer this shop because the goods are ready-weighed and ready-packed. I find it convenient and always go there if my mother forgets to buy something and I am sent for it. As I have said I am not keen on shopping at all and when my parents ask me to buy something, I am always reluctant to do it. Most of all I like book and music shops. I can stay there for hours leafing through pages of some historical books or going through piles of CDs. These shops are worth visiting even if you donít intend to make a purchase there as they offer a wide selection of books on music. But regular shopping is really boring and tiresome. So, as you see I am not a shopaholic.
3(2) Are your parents happy about the way you spend your money? Why? Why not?
If you are interested in this question. I can tell you the following. Firstly I donít earn any money myself. Of course my parents give me some money when I ask for it. My parents are sure that having money teaches me to budget and to understand that I couldnít buy everything and I learn to be responsible. My mum is sure that I spend money when I go out with friends. Some of the money is saved so I can buy little things for myself such as hair stuff, magazines and CDs. To conclude, I think my parents are happy about the way I spend my pocket money.
3(3) What questions can you ask your friend about the best shopping places in his/her native town / city?
I know that you have some good shopping places in your town.
1. Where are the best shopping places situated?
2. What do they offer?
3. Is there a market near your place?
4. I can buy everything I want in the nearest supermarket, canít I?
5. Do the shops work 24 hours or till 10 oíclock?
Advise me on how to make my own budget.
Firstly, if you want to make your own budget you should plan how to spend your money. Secondly, write down every single thing you spend money on each week and how much it costs and how much you can save a week. Finally and it is the most important, I think, donít make useless and unplanned purchases.
3 (5) Parents usually give pocket money to their children. But some people think they shouldnít do it as teenagers donít work. What do you think about it?
Personally I think that by giving pocket money parents help children learn to manage money while they are young. It is also helps them make choices and feel that they are important members of the family. Even a small amount can give a child the feeling of responsibility and independence. Parents can suggest the child keeping a little book in their money box to record ins and outs. This will help with their mathematics and will encourage them to save money. But in some families children are given what they ask for and do not get pocket money. Some parents think that pocket money can cause a number of problems. For example, if children have a lot less then their friends they may feel depressed and may be tempted to steal. On the other hand, when they have much more it can cause envy and resentment amongst their friends. Besides, I believe that parents should never give pocket money to their children as compensation for not spending enough time with them and as a reward for helping around the house. To conclude, I think it is up to parents to decide whether to give children pocket money or not. Anyway, parents should explain their sons and daughters that lots of money cannot buy love and happiness.
4(1) Letís talk about shopping. Who does the shopping in you family?
4(2) Is it easy to buy a good birthday present? Why? Why not?
To my mind itís not easy to buy a good birthday present. The choice depends on many factors such as the age, the interests and hobbies of the person who is given a present and our well-being. But I am sure that beautifully packed sweets in special birthday boxes make ideal presents for everybody.
4(3) What questions will you ask a shop assistant to help you to choose a purchase?