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IELTS General Writing Task 1 with model answer

You should spend about 20 minutes on this task. Write about the following topic

You have heard about plans to build new apartments in a public park near your home. You want to give your opinion about this. 

Write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper. In your letter

  • explain how you learnt about these plans 
  • say what you think of the park 
  • give your opinion on the plans

Write at least 150 words. 


You do NOT need to write any addresses. 

Begin your letter as follows: Dear Sir or Madam,

Model Answer:

Dear Sir or Madam , 



I am writing this letter to express my personal opinion in regard to the proposed housing construction to be built in Happy Garden. Earlier this month an article was published in your newspaper, The Sun, which highlighted that Sime Darby, the renowned property developer, has plans to demolish the public park and replace it with new apartments.

This news is heart-breaking. The community of Happy Garden often utilize the park for evening walks. On top of that, they also spend their leisure time in the park , breathing fresh air alongside enjoying the calm and serene green environment. I believe the park brings the community together and it allows people to relax from their Thectic work life. 

I hope that Sime Darby could consider reserving and maintaining the park for the best interest of the community. We would be grateful if the property developer could look out for other space options available for the building of apartments, such as the unowned lands near the lake side. 

Thank you for hearing me out. 

Yours sincerely, 

Sat Desh Kaur

Total Words: 180

Task Achievement: 9

Coherence & Cohesion: 9

Lexical resources: 9

Grammar: 9

Overall Score: Band 9

Student Question

I received an email from a student asking about a phrase used in the above task. I thought it would be helpful to explain it for everyone. Here's what he said:

In the task initially it says that " you have heard " and in the first bullet point, it asks you that write " how you learnt about all of it ". So my Tutor said that your Source of the information should be focused on the word "Heard"... means you heard it through a gossip or friend or any other source but as i wrote the same newspaper article source, he said that it will be considered as a misunderstanding and it will affect your scoring. I would really appreciate it if you could confirm to me, whether it is an evaluation mistake in your assessment or is it any misunderstanding, which my Tutor has got.

My response was as follows:

You have brought up a good question. The phrase "have heard of" is used flexibly in English. i.e. it is not strictly used for things that you hear when someone is talking. The Cambridge dictionary itself defines it as "having knowledge of something or someone". see here: https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/have-heard-of-sb-sth
The phrase does not say how you got that knowledge. It should not be interpreted literally to only mean "hearing" the information.
However, during the exam, if you are unsure, then stick to the literal meaning and make your story around some gossip that you heard.

Moreover, the specific term used for "hearing" information from someone is "overheard" .. i.e. if the question said "you overheard about XYZ... " then you would have to talk about hearing gossip.

Good luck!

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