TOEFL Essays 19 and 20

19 Should governments spend more money on improving roads and highways, or should governments spends more money on improving public transportation ( buses, trains, subways)? Why? Use specific reasons and details to develop your essay.

Governments should definitely spend more money on improving all forms of public transportation. These include buses, subways and trains. This is the best way to preserve natural resources and reduce pollution.
As a planet, we’re dealing with a finite amount of natural resources. Once they're gone, they can't be replaced. They can't fill our need for oil and gasoline forever. But we seem to forget that and consume them at an incredible rate. In wealthier counties, some families have two or three cars. As soon as teenagers get their driver's licenses, they’re given cars so their parents won't have to drive them places.
Public transportation hasn't been sufficiently developed. Because of this, suburban areas surrounding cities have been allowed to sprawl more and more widely. This means that people can't even go to the store without having to hop into the car. Everything is too far away from where they live. If there were better and more frequent public transportation, people would be able to give up their cars for local driving.
As a result of all the cars being driven, we’re dealing with terrible pollution problems. In big cities, there are days during the summer when the elderly and people with respiratory problems are advised not to leave the house. Ten years ago this was unheard of! Now it's the norm. Public transportation would cut down considerably on air pollution.
Public transportation also encourages a sense of community. People who travel to work together all the time get to know each other. Car isolate us from neighbors. However, people feel they need to drive because they can't depend on public transportation to fit their schedules. If more money were available, buses, subways and trains could run 24 hours a day. Then they would be available all the time to the people who need them.
I always try to take public transportation whenever possible, and I encourage friends and neighbors to try it too. I think we must support public transportation in order to create a better world.

20 It is better for children to grow up in the countryside than in a big city. Do you agree or disagree? Use specific reasons and examples to develop your essay.

There are advantages and disadvantages to a childhood in either the country or a city. It's hard to say which is better. Growing up in the country means a certain amount of isolation. You're in a small town or on a armband not with a lot of people. Even more important, the people you meet everyday tend to be just like you. Most will be the same race as you, have the same background as you, and will have gone to the same school as you. In the city, the people you meet are different. There are different races and different cultures. You get a more interesting mix.
City people tend to come from a lot of different places and move around a lot. So, there isn't the sense of community in the city that you have in the country. People in the city can live in the same apartment building for twenty years and never get to know their neighbors. In the country, everybody knows everybody. For a child, this means the country is more secure. A child can get lost or hurt in the city and have no one to turn to. In the country, everyone’s a neighbor. People in the country feel connected to each other.
A child growing up in the city has the advantages of a lot of interesting and exciting place to visit. He or she can go to the zoo, museum, art galleries and concerts. There are a lot of restaurants with different kinds of food. It’s easy to see every new movie that comes out. Child in the country don't have a lot of these activities nearby.
All in all, I think a childhood in the city is better because it prepares you more for what real life is like.