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Important skill you learned when you were a child

IELTS Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card 286 with Model Answer:

Describe an important skill you learned when you were a child.

You should say:
  • what this skill was
  • when you learned it
  • how you learned it

and explain why you think it was important.

[You will have to talk about the topic for one to two minutes. You have one minute to think about what you're going to say. You can make some notes to help you if you wish.]

Model Answer 1:

In our early childhood, we learn many important skills, like walking, talking and so on, without even noticing. And sometimes, when we grow a little bit, we try to learn a lot of skills in order to make ourselves look cool and important to other people around us. Today, I would like to talk about one such skill which, I think, was important.

This important skill, I learned, was running a video camera and doing the recording. I became interested in learning this skill when my maternal uncle gave a video camera to my family as a gift about 15 years ago or so.

If I remember it correctly, I had just started junior high school at that time, and I had a great deal of interest in shooting videos just the way moviemakers would shoot a movie. So, when my uncle handed that camera over to my family, I felt like I was as happy as flying on the moon.

Anyway, as I got the camera, I started to play with it even though, my parents were a lot of nervous about it initially. After all, they didn’t want their newly-gifted camera getting damaged by some “careless” child like me. But, when they saw that I was handling that camera with utmost care while also recording different kinds of things and events at home, they felt that their camera was, after all, in a safe pair of hands. Slowly and slowly, thereafter, I became a rather confidant and skilled (“skilled” for an 11 or 12 years old child that is) about doing videos by experimenting with different colour balance, field depth, frames per second, lighting schemes and view angles. Later on, I even went to events, like birthday parties and award-giving ceremonies of my friends, with my camera in order to do the video recording.

Well, learning this skill was important for me, mainly because it could keep me occupied in doing good things instead of wasting my time on unnecessary stuff. It was important also because it allowed me to capture many rare and important events of my life so that I could watch them at a later time.

Model Answer 2: 

I learnt to cook various types of meals from my childhood. It was my mother who inspired me to learn and in fact, this is a real-life skill that everyone needs to know. Thank you for asking the question and I am also pleased to describe my skill here.

Cooking is considered as an art form but not everyone is the artist here. I am proud to inform you that I can cook different dishes very well, especially the local dishes of India. But this is a bit unusual for a boy like me to be an expert cook. The credits are for my mother. She was my mentor in this case and I learnt a good number of cooking lessons from her. She loved to cook and it turned in to her passion. She luckily transmitted the passion to me as well. Now I am a perfect male cook in my family in line with my mother.

I learn it when I was a child of 10 years old. In fact, I used to be with my mother always. I tried to imitate her in everything. Whenever she was in the kitchen, I used to follow her there. I also tried to cook foods as she did. But alas! I was unable to do that. My knowledge of cooking was immature. Once I tried to cook a curry and had burnt the entire ingredients. Besides, I could not make roti or paratha as well. So, when my mother discovered my interest in cooking, she started teaching me about the matter. Gradually, I developed a sense of cooking. Moreover, being a quick learner, I was able to learn the processes very fast. But it was a bit difficult to appear in the practical exam where my mother evaluated my cooking skill.

I had to struggle a lot to learn cooking. This is a real-life skill but if you do not have the knowledge and the sense of applying the ingredients, you cannot be a good cook. Actually, sensing the necessity is the best way to learn cooking. The taste of the foods depends on either you are pouring the water at the right time or placing the spices in the right amount. Only the slightest difference can ruin the entire cooking process. For instance, I had to experience difficulties regarding the salt. I was unable to provide the right amount of salts in the curries. Most of the times, I used to give excessive salts and the curry tastes changed. They turned inedible. Gradually, I learnt the matter and now there are no issues regarding salt on the curries. Besides, it took time for me to learn about the preparation of the meals.  

This is really important to know cooking. In fact, this is more important for the males to learn about the cooking process. When they will know to cook, they can cook for themselves. At the same time, they will provide a sense of relief to the other family members, especially mother and sisters from this task. By cooking different types of meals, they can also pass their leisure hours (as I do now). Furthermore, when a man will learn to cook foods, he will need to depend on others. he can cook for himself and be self-reliant in this case. In conjugal life, it would be a surprise for the wife when he will cook for her. Not only for this reason, I think this is important for many other cases as well.

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