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English Conversation – Beliefs & Opinions

Thursday, November 8, 2012 @ 10:11 AM
posted by Jo

This is the preparation material for an English conversation lesson about beliefs and opinions. Everyone has beliefs and opinions. Some people believe everything they hear while others are sceptical and will not believe anything until they see it with their own eyes.  It is difficult when we have different opinions and beliefs to others. Sometimes this can lead to arguments and debates. It is healthy to share and discuss opinions but problems can develop when people hold onto their beliefs too tightly. This can lead to fights and in some cases even war.  

Audio Discussion 

Listen to the following discussion about whether controversial subjects should be included on the popular English website, Elllo. 

Download audio discussion about sharing opinions

Download transcript of audio discussion

* Audio courtesy of elllo.org

  • Do you avoid talking about controversial topics or do you enjoy it?
  • Is it better to talk about and share opinions or keep them to yourself?

Expressions  

  • To have a difference of opinion – “We get on well even though we often have a difference of opinion”
  • To have an opinion on everything – “I can never relax around John, he has an opinion on everything!”

Phrasal Verbs 

  • Put forward – “I would like everyone to put forward their views and opinions in this discussion.”
  • Put up with – “I don’t agree with his beliefs but I guess I just have to put up with them.” 

Conversation Questions 

  • Are you passionate about your beliefs?
  • Do you ever try to impose your beliefs on others?
  • Does anyone ever try to impose their beliefs onto you?
  • Have you ever been afraid to share your beliefs with anyone?
  • Do you have strong opinions on things? What things do you feel strongly about?
  • How do you feel when someone disagrees with something you believe to be true?
  • Do you ever get into arguments with people who have different beliefs or opinions as you?
  • Are there any politicians or famous people whose opinions you strongly disagree with?
  • What is the best way to deal with different opinions in the workplace?
  • Do you consider other people’s opinions before making a decision?
  • At work do you ever share your opinions on controversial issues? What type of response do you get?
  • Do you always give your honest opinion or do you sometimes tell a white lie to avoid upsetting someone?
  • Whose opinion do you value most? 

Sharing opinions

 

Stating an opinion Supporting an Opinion Asking for an Opinion
In my opinion... If you want my honest opinion....

As far as I'm concerned...

If you ask me...

I think that

I’m pretty sure that

I honestly feel that

I believe that

I firmly believe…

I have reason to believe that…

It leads me to believe that…My opinion is based on the fact that…

The reason why I think…

When you consider that…

For instance

For example

To start with

The way I see it... 

 

 

What are your thoughts on all of this? How do you feel about that?

Do you have anything to say about this?

What do you think?

What’s your opinion about this?

 

Language Practice 

Practice using the phrases above by answering the following question:

Which of the following do you believe in/agree with? Why?

Extraterrestrials

Traditional medicine

Telepathy

TV causes violence

Life after death

Men are smarter than women

Alcohol should be illegal

Ghosts

Reincarnation

Dogs are the best pets

Dreams have messages

Drugs should be legal

 

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