Cover of the textbook Speakout Advanced Plus - Students' Book

The key answer of exercise 2

The key to exercise solutions in chapter 1.1 - Trailblazer for the textbook Speakout Advanced Plus - Students' Book with authors Frances Eales and Steve Oakes from Pearson Education


  1. Read the definition of 'trailblazer'. Then discuss the questions.
  2. Read the article about Boyan Slat, a modern-day trailblazer. How many of the qualities you identified are mentioned?
  3. Read the article again. Find information in the article that supports these statements.
  4. Diss with other students.



  1. Students' own answers.
  2. Suggested answers: vision, drive, enthusiasm, creativity, originality, unconventionality, commitment, dedication, good communication skills, grit, persistence, energy. hard-working, the ability to inspire others, not intimidated. tireless, resilience, dedication, determination, stubbornness, resourcefulness (or any other valid ones that students come up with)


  • has vision → Boyan Slat has a goal in life
  • drive and enthusiasm → fired up by the problem
  • creativity and originality → Slat came up with a game-changing idea; his innovative design, the idea represented a paradigm shift
  • unconventional → aware that his ... project ... requires a leap of faith for those who devote their energy to supporting it; making this crazy idea a reality
  • commitment, dedication → committed to developing the clean-up project and ready to dedicate all his time to it
  • good communication skills → communicate his Ideas more effectively
  • grit, determination, persistence → never lost sight of his goal; he never gives up
  • energy → Boyan's got this energy that simply takes you in
  • hard work → he works incredibly hard
  • ability to inspire others → his persistence is infectious
  • not intimidated, tireless, resilience → undaunted by the enormity of the task


  1. millions of tonnes of plastic have concentrated in five 'gyres'
  2. that would cost billions of dollars and take thousands of years to complete
  3. From childhood his creativity and originality were evident; he was always fascinated by engineering, building tree-houses, zip wires and he even set a Guinness World Record for launching water rockets.
  4. He went on to study aero-engineering at Delft University but quit after six months, as he was increasingly committed to developing the clean-up project.
  5. The would-be entrepreneur set up a foundation, The Ocean Cleanup (TOC), but could find no sponsors. It was a disheartening experience.
  6. He acknowledges that the clean-up, if successful, is only the start.


  1. to inform the reader about the project, to convey a positive image of Boyan Slat.
  2. Students' own ideas.
  3. Students' own ideas.