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Read the following passage and mark the letter A, B, C, or D on your answer sheet to indicate the correct answer to each of the questions.         Most parents want their sons and daughters to have equal chances of success when they grow up. Today, equality of the sexes is largely mandated by public policy and law. However, old-fashioned ideas and a lot of prejudice are still part of our culture and present challenging questions for parents.       Gender stereotypes are rigid ideas about how boys and girls should behave. We all know what these stereotypes are: A “feminine” girls should be insecure, accommodating and a little illogical in her thinking. A “masculine” boy should be strong, unemotional, aggressive, and competitive. How are children exposed to these stereotypes? According to the researchers David and Myra Sadker of the American University of Washington, D.C., boys and girls are often treated differently in the classroom. They found out that when boys speak, teachers usually offer constructive comments, when girls speech, teachers tend to focus on the behavior. It’s more important how the girls act rather than what they say.       The emphasis on differences begins at birth and continues throughout childhood. For example, few people would give pink baby’s clothes to a boy or a blue blanket to a girl. Later, many of us give girls dolls and miniature kitchenware, while boys receive action figures and construction sets. There’s nothing wrong with that. The problem arises when certain activities are deemed appropriate for one sex but not the other. According to Heather J. Nicholson, Ph.D., director of the National Resource Center for Girls, Inc., this kind of practice prevents boys and girls from acquiring important skills for their future lives.        “The fact is,” says Nicholson, “that society functions as a kind of sorting machine regarding gender. In a recent survey, fifty-eight percent of eighth-grade girls but only six percent of boys earned money caring for younger children. On the other hand, twenty-seven percent of boys but only three percent of girls earned money doing lawn work”. If we are serious about educating a generation to be good workers and parents, we need to eliminate such stereotypes as those mentioned previously.       Gender stereotypes inevitably are passed to our children. However, by becoming aware of the messages our children receive, we can help them develop ways to overcome these incorrect ideas. To counteract these ideas, parents can look for ways to challenge and support their children, and to encourage confidence in ways that go beyond what society’s fixed ideas about differences of sext are. (Source: https://en.islcollective.com) Which of the following could be the main idea of the passage?
Read the following passage and mark the letter A, B, C, or D on your answer sheet to indicate the correct answer to each of the questions.       Optimists have plenty to be happy about. In other words, if you can convince yourself that things will get better, the odds of it happening will improve - because you keep on playing the game. In this light, optimism “is a habitual way of explaining your setbacks to yourself”, reports Martin Seligman, the psychology professor and author of Learned Optimism. The research shows that when times get tough, optimists do better than pessimists - they succeed better at work, respond better to stress, suffer fewer depressive episodes, and achieve more personal goals.       Studies also show that belief can help with the financial pinch. Chad Wallens, a social forecaster at the Henley Centre who surveyed middle-class Britons’ beliefs about income, has found that “the people who feel wealthiest, and those who feel poorest, actually have almost the same amount of money at their disposal. Their attitudes and behaviour patterns, however, are different from one another.”       Optimists have something else to be cheerful about - in general, they are more robust. For example, a study of 660 volunteers by the Yale University psychologist Dr. Becca Levy found that thinking positively adds an average of seven years to your life. Other American research claims to have identified a physical mechanism behind this. A Harvard Medical School study of 670 men found that the optimists have significantly better lung function. The lead author, Dr. Rosalind Wright, believes that attitude somehow strengthens the immune system. “Preliminary studies on heart patients suggest that, by changing a per¬son’s outlook, you can improve their mortality risk,” she says.       Few studies have tried to ascertain the proportion of optimists in the world. But a 1995 nationwide survey conducted by the American magazine Adweek found that about half the population counted themselves as optimists, with women slightly more apt than men (53 per cent versus 48 per cent) to see the sunny side. (Adapted from https://www.ielts-mentor.com) What does the passage mainly discuss?