AE 513: How to talk about HOBBIES | IELTS Lesson 3

Learn advanced English in this IELTS course episode of The Aussie English Podcast where we learn how to talk about hobbies in English.

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AE 513 – IELTs Course: Lesson 3 – Hobbies

What’s up, guys! Welcome to this episode of Aussie English. Today is an IELTS lesson about hobbies. So, this is going to be broken into two parts. Kel and I are going to just have a discussion about our hobbies so, that you guys can hear and natural discussion in English, using different phrases, different vocab, everything like that. This will be up on the podcast and then there’ll be a second video and lesson where we will go through how to prepare for the speaking test. The questions you might get and then we’ll also break down different pieces of vocab and expressions that we suggest that you practice that you could use on these test for IELTS, Cambridge, PTE, whatever it might be, ok? So, let’s get into it. Kel, me about your hobbies. What do you do for fun? How do you enjoy your spare time?

Hmmm Let me think. That’s one thing you don’t want to do during your Speaking Test, hesitation, it’s not good. They’ll be like, you don’t know what you doing.

Come prepared.

Come prepared. Yeah.

You can make things up so, but I’ll tell the truth here. I’m really into photography. Cause I think and we’ve both, you know, drawn into. A little bit because of your Dad, I think, because your dad is a wild life photographer.

He just does photography in general.

Yeah, you know as a journalist I’m kind of in the same direction, but I do enjoy doing that it makes me go outside and keeps me fit and it’s fun and you go back home when you edit your photos. It’s such good fun.

It’s a bit like playing Pokémon.


Anyone who knows Pokémon the game it’s kind of like you go into a new area and you see all these new pokémon and you never know what you going to get, and photography is a bit like that too, where you’ll go out and you take all these photos, quite often you don’t see them in your home and then you’re like oh these ones are amazing, these ones are horrible, these ones awesome.

I think for you… you found something you really into very soon, like birds for example, or wildlife. And I’m still working on what my thing is, I like photographing animals, I like photographing people, street photography so, I’m not really into one single thing.

You’re not obsessed with one thing.

Yeah, I like doing bits and pieces of different things.

You like to dabble in a few different areas.

And then the gear stuff like you have to understand how your camera works and he is much better than me…

I think I’m just a bit more obsessed. It’s a very cerebral kind of a hobby where you have to learn all of these kind of complicated things if you want to get good at it, it’s not like… I run. That’s my hobby, my hobby is running, where is just left, right, left, right, left, right. Photography’s are a lot more gear oriented, you need to buy gear, you need to buy different lenses, you need to understand when they work, how they work. What to change with regards to techniques and features, it’s very good.

It’s unpredictable, right? Like in one day you might have, you know, the sun’s out and the light is perfect and your photos are great, but the next day it might be overcast and you have to change your settings and adapt to different conditions.

So, it is very variable. I think that’s part of the fun is that you just never know what you’re going to get.


How long have you been into it? How long have you been into photography?

I did a little bit in Brazil as a journalist, but it was work related so, it wasn’t so, you know, as much fun as now because I was doing that for work, which was enjoyable but not I didn’t have as much freedom to play with the camera and to do different things. Just recently I’ve taken up this hobby for the last, what, three four months I would say.

May be longer than that.

Probably six months in Canberra.

Yeah in fact, Kel’s engagement ring, she’s got a wedding ring on her engagement ring was actually this camera because I was like, you know, I would prefer to buy you something that you can use that isn’t just a ring with that amount of money, right? Because engagement rings tend to be a lot more expensive than wedding rings and we bought the camera.

And we can both use it.

I can use Kel’s engagement ring.

It should go on the cultural differences, right? Cause here only the girl has the engagement ring, which is completely pointless.

Back in Brazil, what were your hobbies growing up? What did you used to do when you were a little kid in your spare time or to have fun?

That was my question, my IELTS question last time I did IELTS.

They used the set up, ‘what did you do as a kid for fun?’ Okay.

Yeah, exactly. I didn’t have many toys like, growing up. I would get presents for Christmas and you know kids break everything so, I would have to be really creative with my sister and one of our favourite hobbies was.

Breaking toys.

Not breaking toys, but like coming up with crazy plays, like she would be the mum, I would be the baby or we would be two, you know, friends visiting a different country it was really a imagination sort of…

You had to use your imagination.


To have fun and go in this little adventure.

Yes. I liked playing outside with my friends on the street ,when I was allowed to, obviously, it wasn’t really something I would do very often. But that was fun, growing up like having friends on the street like, you know, the neighbours and we would go to their house and play with them. I had some like Barbies.

Actual Barbie dolls, not barbecues, Kel used to be obsessed with the hobby of having barbecues as a kid. Barbies, that doll Barbie.

I had some and we would play with them as well, it was fun. It’s…I think my childhood was very different from yours because I didn’t have the chance to learn how to swim or learn how to ride my bike or things like that. So, my hobbies were much more related to imagination and other kids and people and I would have to be creative and I think for you and you know for other people it might be swimming or you did piano as well, right?

Well, a lot of these activities more so than hobbies.

You didn’t enjoy it.

Where I was sort of forced. I remember the first day when I had to do piano lessons my mum gave me a note that I had to take to school and she said give this to a friend of hers who worked at the school as a piano teacher. I don’t even know and I gave this note to this lady and the lady’s like, oh sit down Pete you’re starting piano lessons, I was like I don’t want to start piano lessons.

So, we can say that hobbies are things you enjoy doing, right?

I would definitely say that.

So, if you’re forced to do it, it’s not a hobby.

It’s something that you enjoy doing, you spend time doing that thing.

Relaxes you.

Exactly. So for me, growing up there are many activities that I have to do, but I don’t think I would never have called the piano a hobby, I didn’t like it. I never called that swimming a hobby because I didn’t like it. You had to do it because you had to learn how to swim to be safe, but hobbies that I did have included things like skateboarding, I used to love doing, Surfing, I used to love doing, fishing. I used to love going fishing, you know, and doing that, but my dad used to hate fishing so I would always be me alone on the pier and he would just be there you know sort of like…

Because you don’t like fishing nowadays.

I don’t mind, but I know it’s not something I’m really into, I’m not really into fishing. I’d go if you were someone who came to me and said I have this fishing gear, I’ve got a boat, do you want to go fishing? I’d be like oh hell yeah, but I’m not going to go out of my way to lash out a lot of money on gear for fishing. It’s one of those things I could get into, but there are only so many hours in the day and I prefer doing at least at the moment photography, Aussie English, Aussie English is…It kind of, it started as a hobby, right? So Aussie English began as a hobby for me because I wasn’t getting paid for it. It was just something I did to help people and I enjoyed doing it. But that went from a hobby into a career or went from a hobby into a job. When I monetised, when I started making money from my hobby. So, that was that was a really, really good process I guess turning a hobby into a career.

And that’s a great thing like you end up doing something like gardening or whatever it is, and you find a way to make money out of the thing you enjoy the most. So, that’s great, absolutely great and unfortunately, I haven’t done it, I need to find a way to make money out of my hobbies. Yeah.

How do you make money from talking, Kel?

From reading.

What are you doing right now?

Yeah so, nowadays I would say my you know things I’m much more passionate about are reading, one because I’m pregnant and I’m trying to read as much as I can about pregnancy and education and child development and stuff.

So, would you call pregnancy a hobby.


It’s not enjoyable!

It is enjoyable sometimes, but not enough for me to say it’s a hobby.

I’d be worried if he said the pregnancy is my hobby.

Imagine that?! Like every year.

That’s it, I do it every year.

I love reading, I love… learning how to swim is a very recent thing and I’m still like really dodgy, I’m a horrible swimmer, but I really enjoy being in the water, going to the swimming pool and like playing there and like making fun of myself.

For me I think it’ll be Photography has definitely become my primary hobby. The main hobby that I’m sort of obsessed with and into so, any time I have spare time, to the detriment of our spare time, Kel is quite often like Oh God, he’s watching videos again about photography or he’s editing video, or he’s editing photos. So, I do become a bit obsessive. I do like a lot, but I also say I guess I enjoy going to the gym at the moment, that’s my other hobby. Watching documentaries, I guess that’s a hobby, I do that with Kel quite a bit, we like to watch documentaries.

Going to the movies is a hobby, I love that, you don’t really like that, so…

Not as into it, I don’t like people eating popcorn in a big room.

Like if I had to explain that if I was actually doing IELTS today and I had to explain why going to the movies is so enjoyable for me I would say it’s a whole different thing, like you is a social thing, right? You leave your house, you go out. You might have someone else with you or you might do it by yourself, but the whole experience is what is enjoyable like have this big screen in front of you, and popcorn of course, so the whole thing is different from watching a movie in your house. Sometimes I just want to do that, bit like going out and seeing people, just like being outside…

It’s the atmosphere.

Yes, exactly.

So, do you have any friends or family with weird hobbies or anything you’d never do?

My mum’s a bit obsessed with reading, to a point that she and I don’t know if your mum is like that as well…

I think she probably is. You mean with like novels.

No nonfiction, but fiction. So, it’s like all these stories and everything. And romance novels?

Romance novels, it’s just gross.

My mom has a library of romance novels.

My mum has a library too. The thing is, it takes so much space. I love books. I want to have a library in my house. But then when you can’t move in the house, that when I think it gets complicated because…

It goes from a hobby to an obsession.

I think my mom is a different level.

She’s addicted to collecting books. When do you ever read them too? That’s what I always said to my mom I’m like you’ve got all these books, but do you ever read them twice or do you just buy one and put it on the shelf after you’ve read it and that’s it?

Absolutely, I don’t know. I love reading, but I think I’m much more willing to give away the books I’ve already read, as gifts to friends or you know, I don’t like…. I like collecting things, but not to the point where my life is completely taken over by this hobby.

It’s an easy thing to fall into, especially because I think human nature is kind of like we need to collect resources. And so you have to try to avoid that and I always feel that with like photography gear, for example, oh what’s the next thing that I can get, Kel is always like no… no.

Yeah. Because you have to set a limit, when you’re doing something and you’re buying things because you need them or you just want to have the, you know, the latest sort of camera or whatever, because the cameras work absolutely fine and you’re doing so much with them and unless you do you have the need to have a different camera or different lens or whatever it is, I don’t see the point, but I’m stingy, so…

Kel doesn’t like spending much money.

Yeah, I mean.. I do… but yeah, you’re right.

So, are there any hobbies that you could never imagine yourself doing?

Dangerous stuff like surfing. I don’t know how to swim, so one day when I finally learn, I might be brave enough to go in the water and surf, but that’s for me, that’s a bit scary.

I think for me it would be more the boring things, my mom is obsessed with collecting stamps. I think would, I could never imagine myself doing that. I used to do it when I was a little kid. I think for like a few months and then I was like I’m over this. I’m over it, I’m not interested, I want something else, I want a skateboard, no stamps.

You asked before about weird hobbies and stuff, I really like fishing. It’s not something I do all the time and it has been ages since I last went fishing, but I absolutely love it. I can spend a whole day, you know, in a boat, just there relaxing waiting for the fish to come. I love it. I think I get the same feeling you get from photography.

Because you never know what you’re going to get.

It’s strategic, right? Like you’re there, you have to know what to do, and a lot of people think you don’t do anything, but actually there’s a lot of thinking behind fishing.

I thought you just put the bait on the hook. You just cast the line out get a beer, and that’s it.

You have to understand like the tide and just everything, it’s just really, really nice and something I’ve been trying to do a lot recently and I’m into it, but I’m not as good as I wanted it to be cooking. So, I think is a bit like chemistry, right? Like you have this step by step whatever recipe and you need to make it to something, you know, tasty and people will enjoy it and I love it.

You’ve got to use all these ingredients, two parts this, one part this, mix here.

And I usually mess up. My last attempts were not so successful, But I’m getting there, it is really enjoyable. I recommend it for people who want to take up new hobbies.

Brilliant, awesome. Alright, guys! So that’s it for the conversation stuff. Hopefully you guys learnt a whole bunch of vocab and expressions and you could see how we were using them in a natural kind of conversation and so, if and when you have these exams in the future you’ll have a lot of different content here that you can use when having those kinds of conversations. Now we’re going to move on to the second video so, remember if you want access to that for all the other lessons that are going to be in this course go to enroll and you’ll get access to all the other content that comes after these discussion videos. See you there!

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