TOEFL Q13: Favorite Personal Possession

Directions

In this lesson, your tutor will help you go over question one from the TOEFL speaking test. Read the question below out loud with the tutor.

Describe your favorite personal possession. Explain why it is your favorite. Include details in your explanation.


Preparation time: 15 seconds l Response time: 45 seconds

Warm-up

Choose a question at random from the list below. Answer the question right away without making notes. Try to speak for at least 10 seconds.

  • What are some devices that you always carry with you? 
  • Which pieces of technology could you not live without?
  • What are some ways that you like to relax?

Brainstorm

Use the following pointers as a guideline to refine your answer.

  1. Introduction
    • My favorite possession is my cell phone
  2. Come up with supporting ideas
    • it allows me to send text messages
    • it also provides entertainment
    • it allows me to communicate with others
    • I can watch television programs with it
    • I can call friends and family members
    • I can download and play games
  3. Come up with details to explain two of your supporting ideas
    • communicate with others: I use my cell phone to call and send text messages to my friends and family members.
    • provide entertainment: I can play games on my cell phone.

Sample Answer

Reading great sample answers is one way to improve. Go over the sample answer with your tutor. Ask questions if you have any.

Sample Answer
Of all my possessions, the one that is the most special to me is my cell phone. For starters, my cell phone allows me to communicate with other people. I use my cell phone to call and send text messages to my friends and family members. I also like my cell phone very much because it keeps me entertained. Whenever I’m bored, I can play games on my cell phone. For these reasons, my cell phone is my favorite personal possession.

Further Study

Got more time? Here is a list of common vocab words related to the text you studied today. Go over each one with your tutor.

Additional Expressions
possession (n) the condition of having or owning something
e.g. She came into possession of a rare silver coin.
personal (adj) belonging or relating to a particular person
e.g. She kept her dearest personal belongings locked in a safe.
entertain (v) to provide or be entertainment for (someone)
e.g. Our father’s stories entertained us.
cherish (v) to feel or show great love for (someone or something)
e.g. She cherishes her friends/family.
remind A of B (exp) to cause (someone) to remember (something)
e.g. I reminded him of his promise to help me. [=I reminded him that he had promised to help me]
value (n) the amount of money that something is worth : the price or cost of something
e.g. The company’s stock continues to decrease in value.
priceless (adj) extremely valuable or important
e.g. The Mona Lisa is priceless.
useful (adj) helping to do or achieve something
e.g. The cell phone is a useful invention for staying connected with the world.
convenient (adj) allowing you to do something easily or without trouble
e.g. It might be more convenient to use a calculator, rather than adding the numbers yourself.
device (n) an object, machine, or piece of equipment that has been made for some special purpose
e.g. The spy had planted a hidden recording device in the room.
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