IELTS Listening Practice 119

 
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Questions 23-25

Choose the correct letter, A, B, C or D.

Write your answers in boxes 23-25 on your answer sheet.

23 At first, John thinks that Mary’s presentation topic is

24 According to Mary, early toothbrushes were

25 Early European toothbrush bristles were made of

Questions 26-33

Complete the sentences below.  

Write NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS for each answer.

The first electric toothbrush was made in . Now, toothbrush handles are made of and the bristles are made of .

Toothpaste was invented toothbrushes.

Greek and Roman toothpaste was made of crushed bones and .

Modern toothpaste was invented in the .

Before the 1850s, toothpaste was a

Before the 1890, toothpaste was sold in a , but after that it was sold in a tube.

 
This listening practice simulates the third section of the IELTS Listening test. Listen to the audio and answer questions 23-33.

  • library_books Audio Script

    (Section 3: You will hear a conversation between two students who are discussing their school presentations. First, you will have some time to look at questions 23 to 25 [20 seconds]. Listen carefully and answer questions 23 to 25.)

    J=John

    M=Mary

    J: Hi, Mary. Have you finished your presentation yet?

    M: Hi John. Yes, nearly, I’ve just got a few more slides to add but it’s mostly ready.

    J: Oh, well done. You’ll have no problem meeting the deadline, then. What subject did you chose?

    M: Well, I searched for a topic for ages but finally decided on the history of toothbrushes and toothpaste.

    J: (surprised) Really? Are you serious? That’s an unusual choice!

    M: Yes. It’s actually really interesting, and it meets all the criteria for the presentation because it’s about the development of a product.

    J: (sarcastically) Hmm, I suppose so. It just sounds …

    M: Actually, it’s not as boring as you might think. I bet there are lots of things you don’t know about toothbrushes and toothpaste.

    J: Hmm, maybe. Go on then. Like what?

    M: Well. Toothbrushing tools date back to 3500-3000 BC when the Babylonians and the Egyptians made a brush by fraying the end of a twig. Tombs of the ancient Egyptians have been found containing toothsticks alongside their owners. And, around 1600BC, the Chinese developed "chewing sticks" which were made from aromatic tree twigs to freshen breath.

    J: A twig for a toothbrush?

    M: Yes. Why not? The Chinese are believed to have invented the first natural bristle toothbrush made from the bristles from pigs' necks in the 15th century, with the bristles attached to a bone or bamboo handle. When it was brought from China to Europe, this design was adapted and often used softer horse hairs which many Europeans preferred. Other designs in Europe used feathers.

    J: Wow. I’m speechless.

    (Before you hear the rest of the conversation, you will have some time to look at questions 26 to 33 [20 seconds]. Now, listen and answer questions 26 to 33.)

    M: There’s more. The first toothbrush of a more modern design was made by William Addis in England around 1780 – the handle was carved from cattle bone and the brush portion was still made from pig hairs. In 1844, the first 3-row bristle brush was designed. Natural bristles made from pig hairs were the only source of bristles until Du Pont invented nylon.

    J: So when did they start using nylon for the bristles?

    M: Not until 1938 but that started the development of the truly modern toothbrush. By the 1950s softer nylon bristles were being made, as people preferred these.

    J: What about electric toothbrushes?

    M: The first electric toothbrush was made in 1939 and the first electric toothbrush in the US was the Broxodent in 1960. Today, both manual and electric toothbrushes come in many shapes and sizes and are typically made of plastic moulded handles and nylon bristles. The most recent toothbrush models include handles that are straight, angled, curved, and contoured with grips and soft rubber areas to make them easier to hold and use. Toothbrush bristles are usually synthetic and range in texture. Toothbrush heads range from very small for young children to larger sizes for older children and adults and come in a variety of shapes such as rectangular, oblong, oval and almost round. 

    J: Hmm. In fact, the basic fundamentals haven’t really changed since the times of the Egyptians and Babylonians – a handle to grip, and bristles to clean the teeth.

    M: True. Although over time the toothbrush has evolved to become a scientifically designed tool using modern ergonomic designs and safe and hygienic materials.

    J: What about toothpaste?

    M: Egyptians are believed to have started using a paste to clean their teeth around 5000BC, before toothbrushes were invented. Ancient Greeks and Romans are known to have used toothpastes, and people in China and India first used toothpaste around 500BC.

    Ancient toothpastes were used to treat some of the same concerns that we have today – keeping teeth and gums clean, whitening teeth and freshening breath.

    J: What was toothpaste made of then?

    M: The ingredients of ancient toothpastes were very different and varied and included a powder of ox hooves' ashes and burnt eggshells, that was combined with pumice.

    J: Ugh! Sounds disgusting!

    M: Mmm. The Greeks and Romans favoured more abrasiveness and their toothpaste ingredients included crushed bones and shells. The Romans added more flavoring to help with bad breath, as well as powdered charcoal and bark. The Chinese used a wide variety of substances in toothpastes over time, that have included ginseng, herbal mints and salt.

    J: When did toothpaste as we know it today start to be used?

    M: Hmm, in the 1800s. Early versions contained soap and in the 1850s chalk was included. Betel nut was included in toothpaste in England in the 1800s, and in the 1860s a home encyclopedia described a home-made toothpaste that used ground charcoal. Prior to the 1850s, 'toothpastes' was usually a powder. During the 1850s, a new toothpaste in a jar called a Crème Dentifrice was developed and in the 1870s the mass production of toothpaste in jars began. It wasn’t sold in a tube until the 1890s. Until after 1945, toothpastes contained soap!

    J: Oh no! That must have tasted terrible.

    M: Yes, but eventually it was replaced by other ingredients to make the paste into a smooth paste.

    J: Wow. Well, thanks for all that information. I’m so glad we have modern toothbrushes and toothpaste to use today!

    M: Me too!

Answer Sheet
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
N/A
13
N/A
14
N/A
15
N/A
16
N/A
17
N/A
18
N/A
19
N/A
20
N/A
21
N/A
22
N/A
23
N/A
24
N/A
25
N/A
26
N/A
27
N/A
28
N/A
29
N/A
30
N/A
31
N/A
32
N/A
33
N/A
34
N/A
35
N/A
36
N/A
37
N/A
38
N/A
39
N/A
40
N/A
 
Listening Script Vocabulary

(Section 3: You will hear a conversation between two students who are discussing their school presentations. First, you will have some time to look at questions 23 to 25 [20 seconds]. Listen carefully and answer questions 23 to 25.)

J=John

M=Mary

J: Hi, Mary. Have you finished your presentation yet?

M: Hi John. Yes, nearly, I’ve just got a few more slides to add but it’s mostly ready.

J: Oh, well done. You’ll have no problem meeting the deadline, then. What subject did you chose?

M: Well, I searched for a topic for ages but finally decided on the history of toothbrushes and toothpaste.

J: (surprised) Really? Are you serious? That’s an unusual choice!

M: Yes. It’s actually really interesting, and it meets all the criteria for the presentation because it’s about the development of a product.

J: (sarcastically) Hmm, I suppose so. It just sounds …

M: Actually, it’s not as boring as you might think. I bet there are lots of things you don’t know about toothbrushes and toothpaste.

J: Hmm, maybe. Go on then. Like what?

M: Well. Toothbrushing tools date back to 3500-3000 BC when the Babylonians and the Egyptians made a brush by fraying the end of a twig. Tombs of the ancient Egyptians have been found containing toothsticks alongside their owners. And, around 1600BC, the Chinese developed "chewing sticks" which were made from aromatic tree twigs to freshen breath.

J: A twig for a toothbrush?

M: Yes. Why not? The Chinese are believed to have invented the first natural bristle toothbrush made from the bristles from pigs' necks in the 15th century, with the bristles attached to a bone or bamboo handle. When it was brought from China to Europe, this design was adapted and often used softer horse hairs which many Europeans preferred. Other designs in Europe used feathers.

J: Wow. I’m speechless.

(Before you hear the rest of the conversation, you will have some time to look at questions 26 to 33 [20 seconds]. Now, listen and answer questions 26 to 33.)

M: There’s more. The first toothbrush of a more modern design was made by William Addis in England around 1780 – the handle was carved from cattle bone and the brush portion was still made from pig hairs. In 1844, the first 3-row bristle brush was designed. Natural bristles made from pig hairs were the only source of bristles until Du Pont invented nylon.

J: So when did they start using nylon for the bristles?

M: Not until 1938 but that started the development of the truly modern toothbrush. By the 1950s softer nylon bristles were being made, as people preferred these.

J: What about electric toothbrushes?

M: The first electric toothbrush was made in 1939 and the first electric toothbrush in the US was the Broxodent in 1960. Today, both manual and electric toothbrushes come in many shapes and sizes and are typically made of plastic moulded handles and nylon bristles. The most recent toothbrush models include handles that are straight, angled, curved, and contoured with grips and soft rubber areas to make them easier to hold and use. Toothbrush bristles are usually synthetic and range in texture. Toothbrush heads range from very small for young children to larger sizes for older children and adults and come in a variety of shapes such as rectangular, oblong, oval and almost round. 

J: Hmm. In fact, the basic fundamentals haven’t really changed since the times of the Egyptians and Babylonians – a handle to grip, and bristles to clean the teeth.

M: True. Although over time the toothbrush has evolved to become a scientifically designed tool using modern ergonomic designs and safe and hygienic materials.

J: What about toothpaste?

M: Egyptians are believed to have started using a paste to clean their teeth around 5000BC, before toothbrushes were invented. Ancient Greeks and Romans are known to have used toothpastes, and people in China and India first used toothpaste around 500BC.

Ancient toothpastes were used to treat some of the same concerns that we have today – keeping teeth and gums clean, whitening teeth and freshening breath.

J: What was toothpaste made of then?

M: The ingredients of ancient toothpastes were very different and varied and included a powder of ox hooves' ashes and burnt eggshells, that was combined with pumice.

J: Ugh! Sounds disgusting!

M: Mmm. The Greeks and Romans favoured more abrasiveness and their toothpaste ingredients included crushed bones and shells. The Romans added more flavoring to help with bad breath, as well as powdered charcoal and bark. The Chinese used a wide variety of substances in toothpastes over time, that have included ginseng, herbal mints and salt.

J: When did toothpaste as we know it today start to be used?

M: Hmm, in the 1800s. Early versions contained soap and in the 1850s chalk was included. Betel nut was included in toothpaste in England in the 1800s, and in the 1860s a home encyclopedia described a home-made toothpaste that used ground charcoal. Prior to the 1850s, 'toothpastes' was usually a powder. During the 1850s, a new toothpaste in a jar called a Crème Dentifrice was developed and in the 1870s the mass production of toothpaste in jars began. It wasn’t sold in a tube until the 1890s. Until after 1945, toothpastes contained soap!

J: Oh no! That must have tasted terrible.

M: Yes, but eventually it was replaced by other ingredients to make the paste into a smooth paste.

J: Wow. Well, thanks for all that information. I’m so glad we have modern toothbrushes and toothpaste to use today!

M: Me too!

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