Find similarities and differences with your partner FCE Speaking Part One and Two

Choose one of the topics below and try to find out how similar or different that thing is in general for you and your partner, and at least one similarity between you and at least one difference between you on that topic. Tick off the similarity and difference phrases below as you use them, trying to use different language each time.

Typical FCE Speaking Part One topics

Family

Hobbies

Free time

Work

Studies

Accommodation

Hometown

Foreign languages

Language studies

Likes and dislikes

Future plans

Arts and media (movies, TV, etc)

Technology (internet, etc)

Health and fitness

Travel

Holidays

Sports and exercise

Festivals and celebrations

Personality

Appearance

Useful phrases for talking about how similar or different you are

Overall,…

In general,…

absolutely identical

almost completely different

almost the same/ nearly the same

fairly similar

have a lot in common

have almost nothing in common

have nothing in common

have quite a lot in common

more or less the same

share a few features

share many features

share one or two features

share some features

very different

very similar

virtually identical

Useful phrases for talking about similarities

The main similarity…

The biggest similarity…

The most obvious similarity…

A striking similarity…

both

as well

too

and so…

neither/ not… either

have… in common

almost as… as….

(just) as… as…

share…

Like…,…

fairly similar

very similar

more or less the same

exactly the same

(absolutely) identical

Useful phrases for talking about differences

The main difference…

The biggest difference…

The most obvious difference…

A big difference…

A major difference…

A striking difference…

whereas

In (complete) contrast,…

not nearly as… as…

not quite as… as…

slightly/ a little/ a bit/ a little bit + …er/ more…

somewhat + …er/ more…

quite a lot + …er/ more…

much/ a lot/ a great deal/ far + …er/ more…

Compared to…,….

Comparing… (and…),….

fairly different

very different

almost completely different

completely different

but

Unlike…,…

Ask about any expressions above which you couldn’t understand or couldn’t use.

Typical FCE Speaking Part One questions

If you need to or your teacher tells you to, use questions from below to discuss the topics that you choose.  

Are any of your friends particularly interested in…?

Are you interested in…?

Do any of your friends…?

Do you do anything to…?

Do you have the same…as your parents?

Do you like…?

Do you plan to…?

Do you prefer to…or…?

Do you spend a lot of time…?

Do you usually…?

Has… changed since you were younger?

How do you usually…?

How… are you?

Is there anything that you would really like to…in the future?

Tell us about the last time you…

Were you…when you were younger?

What is your favourite…?

What sort of…do you…?

What things… you when you were younger?

Would you describe yourself as…?

Would you prefer to…or…?

Would you say that you…?

Ask about any question stems above which you couldn’t make questions out of or couldn’t think of how to answer.

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Comparing language presentation

Without looking above for now, work together to write as many different things as you can in each gap below. All the gaps apart from one can take at least two different options. The same words can often go in more than once place below.  

Useful phrases for talking about how similar or different you are

_________________________________________________________________ different

__________________________________________________________________ similar

________________________________________________________________ the same

_________________________________________________________________identical

have ____________________________________________________________ common

share ____________________________________________________________features

Useful phrases for talking about similarities

The ___________________________________________________________similarity…

_______________________________________________________________as…as….

Useful phrases for talking about differences

The __________________________________________________________difference…

A ______________________________________________________________difference

In ___________________________________________________________ contrast,…

not ___________________________________________________________ as… as…

__________________________________________________________ + …er/ more…

Use the mixed up extra words on the next page to help with the task above. Some words can be used in more than one place above.

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Useful words for making comparing/ contrasting phrases longer

Use the mixed up extra words below to help with the task on the previous page. Some words can be used in more than one place.  

a bit

a few

a great deal

a little

a little bit

a lot

absolutely

almost

almost completely

almost nothing

big

biggest

exactly

fairly

far

just

main

major

many

most obvious

much

nearly

nothing

one or two

quite

quite a lot

slightly

some

somewhat

striking

very

virtually

Check your answers with the first worksheets. Note that other words in the gaps above might be possible, including the same words in other places.  

Use similar language to compare and contrast Speaking Part Two photos and/ or the pictures of people in Unit 1 of Objective First.

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