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Improve your vocabulary, listening or reading skills with the quizzes below.
Vocabulary Quiz
focus on • force • reflect
hostile • cop out
  1. Don't because you are losing!
  2. I was so tired but I was able to myself to stay awake.
  3. I think sports should participation and fun.
  4. The office had a environment after three workers lost ther job.
  5. I do not think movies today life at all. They are so unrealistic.
Comprehension Quiz
Answer the following questions about the interview.

1006 Winning

Monica and Todd debate winning and teen sports and young athletes.

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Vocabulary notes (text only) explain key vocabulary and phrases from the interview.

focus on winning

Children shouldn't focus on winning in school sports.

When you focus on something, you concentrate your energy on that one thing. When you focus on winning, you play a sport mainly to win. You do not play the sport for fun or to learn something. Winning is the most important thing: Notice the following:

  1. At the professional level, there is a huge focus on winning.
  2. Because he only focused on winning, sports became a job and he no longer enjoyed it.

force yourself

You have to force yourself to be better.

When you force yourself to do something, you make yourself do it even though you do not want to do it. Notice the following:

  1. I forced myself to finally go and see the doctor.
  2. I forced myself to study three hours a day.

reflect life

I don't think sports reflect life actually.

When something reflects life, it "mirrors" life and looks just like it . Notice the following:

  1. The movie was popular because it reflected life in modern times.
  2. Sports reflect life because, just as in life, sometimes you win and sometimes you lose.


It can be counterproductive to act that way.

When something is counterproductive that means it serves a purpose, but at the cost of something else. For example, if you stay up studying all night for a test, it can be counterproductive because the next day you will be too tired to remember anything or be able to focus on the test.

  1. It is counterproductive to eat fast-food after exercising.
  2. It is counterproductive to take a course that is too difficult for you. You will not learn very much.


The counter-argument is that it creates a hostile environment.

A counter-argument is an argument that goes against an original argument. Notice the following:

  1. Some teachers argue students need tests to motivate them, but one counter-argument is that tests take the fun out of learning.
  2. One counter-argument to solar energy is that solar panels are very expensive to make.

hostile environment

It creates a hostile environment in the workplace.

In a hostile environment, people do not feel comfortable because other people make them feel not welcome or show anger or hatred towards them. Notice the following:

  1. The soccer team faced a hostile environment when it played in the other teams stadium.
  2. Prison is a very hostile environment.

cop out

Is that a cop-out or what?

When you cop out of something, you try to get out of or evade doing it. People are expecting you to do something, but you elect not to do it often for another reason, such as an injury or some type of excuse. For example, if you are playing soccer and losing badly, and then ask to stop playing because you are tired, then you cop out. Notice the following:

  1. He copped out of class because he did not do the homework.
  2. He copped out of going to work because his child was sick, even though his wife could stay home and take care of his daughter.