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Exercise 4 Reducing Noise Pollution

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IGCSE ESL Exercise 4 Reducing Noise Pollution is a good example of a summary which has the appropriate length and language to gain full marks in this part of the exam.

young teenagers, meeting, noise pollution

For this part of the IGCSE ESL Reading & Writing Paper, you should:
Hint 1Hint 2Hint 3Hint 4

Keep to the word limit – before the examination, check how many words you write on a line, then you’ll know approximately how many lines you will need.

Include all the key facts relating to the subject of your summary. This will mean looking again at the entire text and underlining relevant points.

Try to connect your ideas into a paragraph using linking words.

Use your own words instead of copying from the text as you have more chance of getting a higher mark for language.


Read the following article about the increasing problem of noise in our society.

How much noise are we subjected to in our normal daily lives without noticing it? How much does this noise affect our body and senses?

Whether it’s a dog barking or the banging of a door, if it’s a sound that disturbs or annoys us, then it’s a sound that is unwanted. Consciously we may not take today’s noise seriously, but unconsciously our bodies still have an automatic response that makes us remember when sudden or loud sounds meant danger. Our blood pressure rises, our heart rate and breathing speed up and subsequently we become hot and sweaty.

Previously, medical science was mostly concerned with noise levels powerful enough to cause hearing damage. But in the 21st century, where everyday noise is a rule rather than an exception, it is thought that the effects leave us in a state of almost constant agitation. Experts have researched many ways in which we can counteract this problem. Let’s consider some of their ideas and suggestions.

Firstly, you should try to start the day with some silence. This means you should get up a little earlier because it could be the most important bit of relaxation you get all day. For a few minutes, sit completely still with a straight back and empty your mind. This is not as easy as it sounds, but take a deep breath and quietly repeat to yourself, “My body is released and relaxed, my heartbeat is normal, my mind is calm and peaceful.” Keep repeating this until any remaining tension is gone and you will feel much more at ease. Imagine yourself looking up at a blue sky full of soft, white clouds.

It would also help to stop talking so much and start thinking instead! Although it may sound rude and unsociable, disciplining yourself to remain silent is a great way to refresh your mind and put things into perspective. As Professor Stephen Palmer, Director of the Centre for Stress Management, explains, “Peace really does come from within. To escape unwanted noise and thoughts, I advise my clients to take their minds through a series of relaxing images. It could be anything from sitting under a cool, shady tree to looking at the stars at night. The great thing about this exercise is that you can find peace for yourself even when you seem to be completely surrounded by noise.”

Apart from hearing, we have senses of touch, smell, taste and sight – so use them! Here’s an idea… switch off all of the noise in your house. Turn off the TV and computer, throw away your mobile phone. Take some time to appreciate your environment by breaking up your day with quiet periods, at least once every couple of hours. Try to seek out somewhere quiet to get away from noisy situations and make the most of the chances for peace that you have. Eat your lunch outside on a park bench and not in the office or classroom.

Finding your own moments of peace and quiet is becoming an increasingly important part of maintaining all-round health. So take a moment to listen to nothing; your body will thank you for it.

Write a summary about what we can do to reduce the stress caused by noise.

More exercises available:

When learning vocabulary, especially helpful are exercises that are focussed on a theme or topic as these provide word retention practice so you can be confident to read, write, speak and listen successfully.

Exercise 1: Read a text and answer a series of questions.

Keeping Bees in the City
Living for 200 years
Living Stone Plants
Walking to the North Pole

Exercise 2: Read a text and answer questions, testing more detailed comprehension.

Cheating in Exams
Different Shops
Different Writers
Pizza Companies
Summer Camps

Exercise 1 (Questions 1 -4) - Short answer exercises

Exercise 2 - (Question 5) Gap-filled exercises

Exercise 3 - Matching

Exercise 4 - Multiple Choice

The more words you encounter and understand, the broader your day-to-day vocabulary will become. So, our IGCSE ESL Word searches are an excellent way to help to reinforce spellings.Word puzzles require not just a good vocabulary and a knack for spelling, but the ability to think logically and strategically. In the case of puzzles like our IGCSE Crosswords, it’s crucial to spell linked words correctly to be able to complete the task. 
Learning English requires not just a good vocabulary, but a strong foundation of all skills to communicate well. Here we provide activities for the IGCSE ESL for all the skills required to be successful in this examination.

Levels Links:
Learn English with our free material for different levels of English. We add exercises on grammar and vocabulary as well as whole text activities on a regular basis. In addition, we provide test practise activities for students who are preparing for the Cambridge Assessment English Main Suite as well as the English Language B for the IB Diploma. The material will also support students studying for the Cambridge Advanced courses.

We provide free resources across the full range of levels to provide the tools to communicate in English well.

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