Adults|Spoken|Pre-Intermediate|1. It runs in the family

Read the statements and say if you agree or disagree with them. Explain your choice


Expressing an opinion

  • In my opinion, …
  • I think …
  • I may be wrong, but I suppose that …
  • I may be wrong, but I don’t think that …
  • I believe …
  • I don’t think …

Read the sentences and match the names with the people in the picture

1. Ann has 3 children.

2. Ann usually spends time with her niece whose name is Emma.

3. Ann’s husband, Jack, loves playing with their youngest daughter Mary very much.

4. Ann’s brother, Ted, usually discusses cars with his nephew Mark.

5. Mark’s best friend is his cousin Nick.

6. Nick, Mark, Emma, Sarah and Mary usually visit their grandparents, Tom and Sophia.

7. Mary has two siblings Mark and Sarah.

8. Mark, Sarah and Mary seldom play with their uncle, Ted, and his wife, Emily.

Read the words in the picture and find their opposites in the list


Complete the questionnaire

Read the text and mark the wrong word


Many factors affect a child’s personality and the adult they become, but the most important one is your birth order, says one of Australia’s leading parenting and educational experts Michael Grose in his book «Why First-Borns Rule the World and Last-Borns Want to Change It».

According to him, firstborn children are more ambitious than their siblings. He also believes that the firstborn child is always the most hard-working child in the family. He also says that such children are kinder and more serious, so they often become the best doctors and lawyers. The negative thing is that they can be too quiet.

Read and complete the rule

Comparative adjectives

We use comparative adjectives when we compare two things, animals or people. We often use the word than when we compare two things. Than often comes after the comparative adjective.

There are a few irregular adjectives.

  • good — better
  • bad — worse

Superlative adjectives

We use superlative adjectives to talk about three or more things, animals or people.

We use the before the superlative adjective.

There are a few irregular superlative adjectives.

  • good — the best
  • bad — the worst

Listen to a radio programme and mark the statements as True or False


Lisa | Den

Lisa: Good morning, everyone. We are glad to welcome you to our radio station! How are you today, Den? What’s the news?
Den: Hello everyone! I’m fine, I’ve just finished reading the book by Michael Grose «Why First-Borns Rule the World and the Last-Borns Want to Change It». Have you read it, Lisa?
Lisa: No, is it worth reading?
Den: Sure. You know that I’m a middle child in my family, and here is what the author says about us — middle children are usually the most independent in the family. They are also very competitive.
Lisa: Really? Why?
Den: It’s obvious! Middle children have to fight with their brothers and sisters for their parents’ attention. He also says that we are usually more sociable and good at meeting new people; that’s because we have always had siblings to play with.
Lisa: Is it true about you, Den?
Den: Absolutely! He says that middle children can be meaner than their brothers and sisters though, because they always have to share things with other children. And you know about this negative trait of my personality.
Lisa: But last Monday you said it’s because you’re a Scorpio!
Den: OK, of course your astrological sign, your gender and life experience can affect your character, but your position in the family is definitely one of the strongest points.
Lisa: Den, maybe you can write a short summary of this book on your blog.
Den: Sure.
Lisa: Our dear listeners, if you are interested in this topic, you can read about other children on Den’s blog. And now it’s time for the news.

Complete the sentences

Read the extract from Den’s blog and complete the sentences about the youngest children in the family


Ben Robbins believes that people who are the youngest in their families are self-confident because so many people love them. However, youngest children can be quite lazy. This is because they always have their older brothers and sisters to help them.

One of the brightest characteristics of youngest children is that they are very creative: their imagination is really good!

Make predictions about only children. Then read the text that your teacher will show you and check your ideas

reliable, kind, generous, wise, organised, impatient, talkative


Only children aren’t more reliable than children who have siblings.

Only children are the most reliable people in their families.

People often have the idea that only children are very impatient. And they are right! Only children are the only ones — they don’t have to share with anyone, so they can’t wait.

On the positive side, only children become more organised and responsible adults than children from big families. Also, these children are often kinder than children who have siblings.

Complete the sentences about famous people. Do you agree with these statements? Why (not)?

Look at the pictures of three sisters and read the information about each of them. Imagine how different their personalities can be and compare them

Ann is 25 years old. Ann is the Head of the IT department. She likes sport and always takes part in different competitions. She lives alone.

Kate is 21 years old. Kate is an artist. She has a lot of hobbies — singing, dancing and many others. She always helps stray animals.

Sarah is 19 years old. Sarah always gets the best grades at university. She always helps her relatives and friends. Her hobby is reading.


1. independent 3. reliable 5. hard-working 7. competitive
2. creative 4. ambitious 6. self-confident


Guess your teacher’s opinion on these statements. Then discuss them to check your predictions

Common beliefs — My teacher’s opinion — Was it correct?

  • The youngest children are the most creative people in the family.
  • Eco-friendly people are more reliable than the ones who are not.
  • People who live in the country are more talkative than people from cities.
  • Teachers are the most patient people in the world.

Match the sentences with the pictures

Read the text and complete it with the adjectives from the first exercise. There is one adjective you do not need

Write the comparative and superlative forms of the adjectives


Read the text and complete it with the correct form of the adjectives



Listen to the audio and choose the correct option to complete each sentence

Maria Sanchez | Tonia | Jay

Maria Sanchez: Welcome back. What do kids think about being an only child? Let’s find out right now! I’m going to speak to Marion and Mark’s daughter, Tonia, and to Tom and Jenna’s son, Jay. Hi, Tonia.
Tonia: Hi.
Maria Sanchez: How old are you, sweetheart?
Tonia: Eight.
Maria Sanchez: Eight! And Jay, you are… ?
Jay: I’m thirteen.
Maria Sanchez: Oh, OK. Now, Tonia, you’re the only child in your family, right?
Tonia: Uh-huh.
Maria Sanchez: And is that OK with you?
Tonia: No! I hate it…
Maria Sanchez: Really? Why?
Tonia: Because I want a sister.
Maria Sanchez: Oh…
Tonia: All my friends have brothers and sisters. I’m the only kid in my class who doesn’t have one!
Maria Sanchez: Oh, I see … Um … Did you ever talk to your mom and dad about it?
Tonia: Yeah, I talked to my mum.
Maria Sanchez: And what did she say?
Tonia: She said, «I am forty-six years old. I am not going to have another child.»
Maria Sanchez: And how did you feel then?
Tonia: I was sad.
Maria Sanchez: But can you understand your mum and dad?
Tonia: Yeah.
Maria Sanchez: Well, that’s good.
Tonia: But I still want a sister!
Maria Sanchez: Well, here’s a little girl who knows what she wants. Thanks, Tonia. And Jay, how about you? Do you feel the same way?
Jay: No, not at all. I like my family like this.
Maria Sanchez: Mmhm… But do you ever feel lonely?
Jay: No, I don’t feel lonely. I feel special! I do a lot of things together with my parents. We always have fun together.
Maria Sanchez: What kinds of things do you do with your parents?
Jay: Well, the best thing is that we travel a lot. Like, last year we went to Europe. And this winter we’re … we’re gonna go … we’re gonna go skiing in Colorado.
Maria Sanchez: Wow, that’s great!
Jay: Yeah, and I think it’s easier for us to do all of these things because it’s just the three of us.
Maria Sanchez: You mean, because your parents can afford it, right?
Jay: Yes, uh-huh…
Maria Sanchez: But do you ever feel different from your friends?
Jay: No. Actually, a lot of my friends are only children, too.
Maria Sanchez: Oh, how interesting… Thanks Jay, and thanks to you, too, Tonia.
Tonia: You’re welcome.
Jay: You’re welcome.
Maria Sanchez: Well, there you have it — two children and two very different opinions about being an only child. Thanks for watching!

Read the task and prepare your 2-minute speech on the topic «Your position in the family and your personality»


Cover the following questions:

  1. What is your position in the family?
  2. What are your main personal characteristics?
  3. Do you agree that someone’s position in the family can influence their personality?
  4. Do you know people who prove this theory?
  5. Do you know people who disprove this theory?

Allow your browser the access to the microphone, press the button «Record» and record the speech you have prepared