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Improve your vocabulary, listening or reading skills with the quizzes below.
Vocabulary Quiz
tatami mats • spare room • roommates
what's it like • reading-based
  1. Do you usually sit on when you eat?
  2. to be a mother?
  3. My anthropology class is really .
  4. How many do you have?
  5. I use the as my office now.
Comprehension Quiz
Answer the following questions about the interview.
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11 New House
Kerri has a new house. She talks about her new living situation.

  • Transcript
  • Audio Notes
Vocabulary notes (text only) explain key vocabulary and phrases from the interview.

tatami mat room

We have a tatami mat room upstairs.

A 'tatami mat' is a traditional Japanese floor covering that was originally made from rice straw, but is now usually made from wood, with a straw covering. Notice the following:

  1. The restaurant has tatami mats in the private rooms.
  2. Do you have tatami mats in your house?

spare room

We use one of the rooms as a spare room.

A 'spare room' is a room that you have available for guests or a room where nobody permanently lives. We can use the word 'spare' for anything that we have that is extra. Notice the following:

  1. We have a spare room for you to stay in.
  2. How many spare rooms do you have?


I like living alone, but it's nice to have a roommate, too,

A 'roommate' is someone who shares your house or apartment with you who is not your relative. People live with roommates when they are in university or before they live alone. Notice the following:

  1. My roommate is the cleanest person ever.
  2. Where did you meet your roommate?

what's it like

What's it like to have a roommate?

When you ask 'what's it like' you want the speaker to describe something for you.  Notice the following:

  1. What's it like to be married?
  2. What's it like to have a real job?


She made tomato-based Indian curry.

If a food is 'tomato-based' it is made up mostly of tomatoes.  We can put the word '-based' after other words to show the composition of something.  Notice the following:

  1. Is the soup tomato-based?
  2. Is the class conversation-based?