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Read David’s story about his school-days:
My name‘s David. I started school when I was five years old. I enjoyed my time at primary school, made lots of friends and learnt to read and write and do arithmetic.
But when I was eleven my family moved to another part of the city and I had to leave all my friends who went to a different secondary school. It was scarybeing in a new school with hundreds of older and bigger children I didn’t know. But my new class teacher was wonderful – she really helped me feel more secure in my environment. And she made us all work really hard too!
After working hard for the first year with Mrs Green ‘s encouragement, I really realisedI didn’t need to do so much work, so I didn’t make much effort in any classes, because I found everything quite easy. I know this was stupid but none of the teachers pushed me to do better so I just did the minimum amount of work necessary.
When I took my GCSEs at the age of sixteen my results were really poor. That taught me a good lesson and since then I haven’t been so lazy!
Now I’m studying history at uni.
Now read Sally’s story:
I’m Sally. Like David, I was eleven when I went to secondary school. At first I had really hard time because, although I did have two good friends, some of the other children picked on me and teasedme because I was quite small for my age. My reaction to this was to be naughtyinclass andcheekyto the teachers and this got me into troubles – I was in detention a lot. This went on for a couple of years until I became confident. I decided to work hard to show the others that I was better than them. The trouble was that despite my hard work I didn’t do very well in tests and still got bad reports from the teachers. So I really didn’t like school, and I stopped making an effort.
But now I’m in the sixth form, everything is different. I’m interested in the subjects I’m doing, the teachers all treat us like adults and (fingers crossed!) I hope to do well in my exams at the end of the year.
If I get the grades I’m hoping for, I’m going to take a gap year before starting university in two years’ time.
Leo Jones, Making Progress, Cambridge.
Match the words and their definitions given below:
scary, to realise, to push somebody to do something, to pick on somebody, to tease, naughty, cheeky, detention, confident, despite, report, to treat somebody, to take a gap year.
sure that something will happen in the way that you want or expect; disobedient; frightening; to know and understand something; a period of time when nothing is happening, that exists between two other periods of time when something is happening; to behave in an unfair way to someone; a punishment in which children who have behaved badly are forced to stay at school for a short time after the others have gone home; to laugh at someone and make jokes in order to have fun by embarrassing them; rude or disrespectful, sometimes in a way that is amusing; used to say that something happens or is true even though something else might have prevented it; complain; to behave towards sb/sth.; to make somebody do something.