Flo-Joe for Cambridge English Exams

Cambridge English: Proficiency

Check out students' answers to Flo-Joe's CPE Writing tasks with a teacher's feedback

Writing Class: Article

Task Type: Article

You have recently read an article from a youth magazine on the problem of inactivity in young people. The magazine has invited its readers to respond to the topic by writing a short article of their own, which answers the following questions:

Why are our young people becoming 'couch potatoes', and what can we do to solve the problem?

You should focus on young people in your country (or a country that you know well).

Write the article for the readers of the magazine. (around 280 - 320 words).

Makeover: Marta

Read Marta's answer to this question below. Try correcting the piece of writing yourself first: use the marking codes to think about what might be wrong (or what's good) about the piece of work. Then when you're ready, click the green buttons in the text for our feedback.

A packet of crisps lying on the floor, a half-eaten pizza on the coffee table and lots of CDs, DVDs and video games all over the place, is all that parents see every time we get home from work. Gd Although there was a time when parents used to worry about where their siblings would be, nowadays we are more concerned about the fact that our teenager children spend so much time at home.

But, why /\ a generation who should be thinking about playing truant, spending all day with their friends and doing sports, decide to spend so many hours at home?

Here, we have to look at new technologies. Not only have they been crucial in the development of medicine or the motor industry but they have also led to a changing WF in youngsters' social lives. They are surrounded by so many devices that can entertain them that why should they leave home? While previous generations had just one TV set at home, two at the most, nowadays there is such a variety of options that teenagers would need a 25-hour day in order to enjoy their computers, cd players, dvd players, video games or mp3s -whatever they are.

However, is technology the one which has to be blame for that? PE I don't think so. First of all, parents have all the responsibility in this matter. After a tiring working day it is much easier to let children be educated by TV while we are having a bubble bath or drinking a cup WW of wine by the fireplace. But, hard as it might be, we should try to do things with them in order to develop a liking for sports and a healthy life, which would be so important in their future. Moreover, why not paying them the registration fee in a sports club, PE instead of buying a Playstation when they get good marks at school?

Lets do something before it is to late...

...oops! 7 p.m., time for my favourite TV programme, which I will watch for the next 3 hours while having dinner -I don't remember the last time we ate at the dining table!-, after TV maybe a bit of the Internet... Ouch, what an awful backache! I should join a gym,... next month perphaps...


A very good attempt at this question Marta. With a lovely eye-catching start, you go on to give a clear outline of the effects of our passive lifestyle and offered practical suggestions as to how this might be changed. You have also, in the main, written in accurate, polished language with examples of excellent sentence structure and an appropriately informal register. However, one crucial point to bear in mind: at 385 words this exceeds the 300-350 word length for CPE. Cutting the last paragraph would be an easy way to solve this here, but you should certainly get into the habit of writing the appropriate number of words.

Marking Code

/\ Word(s) missing

- Omit word

C Capitalization

Gd Good

O Organisation

P Punctuation

PE Poorly expressed

R Register/Formality

SS Sentence Structure

S Spelling

T Tip

WF Wrong form

WO Word order

WT Wrong tense

WW Wrong word