Hands-on English current events activity for December, 1997


Note: You are welcome to print, copy and use this activity with your students. However, this material is copyrighted, so please don't re-publish it anywhere without permission.

Vocabulary exercise: "Climate talks in Japan"

This topic is very interesting and very important for everyone in the world, but it seems difficult to deal with in an English class because the issues are complex and the vocabulary is difficult. Here we have attempted to reduce the issue to a few simple sentences with simple vocabulary. Your students can use the exercise as a starting point that will help them with other, more difficult readings about the global warming issues.

Here are some suggestions for using this material with your students:
For BEGINNERS, you could read the full text aloud first (explaining the meaning where necessary), then give them a copy of the Choose-an-answer version. Have them listen to the text again, and circle the correct answer as they listen. As a follow up, they could search the text of a newspaper story for these vocabulary items and circle them. For INTERMEDIATE students, read the full text aloud first, but then give them the Fill-in-the-blank version and have them write in the missing words as they listen again to the full text. You could follow this up later with a dictation of the same material but have the students write on a blank sheet of paper.For ADVANCED students, you can use the exercise as a guide to scanning newspaper articles for information. Do not read the text aloud to them, but instead just give them a copy of the Fill-in-the-blank version to work on. They should search for the answers in newspapers or magazine articles and report back what they have found--there may be several possible correct answers in some cases. For even MORE ADVANCED students, they could read an article (or articles) about the treaty talks from an English language newspaper first, then use the Fill-in-the-blank version of this exercise as a comprehension quiz or as discussion material.

 

Full text (for dictation)

1. There is an important meeting going on in Japan, in the city of KYOTO.
2. People from 160 different countries are meeting there.
3. They are worried about changes in the CLIMATE.
4. They are trying to agree about controlling pollution in the AIR.
5. Many scientists think the earth will get WARMER if the pollution continues.
6. The air pollution is caused partly by AUTOMOBILES.
7. If the climate changes in the future, there will be more FLOODS.
8. For some countries, it may be difficult to reduce pollution because it is EXPENSIVE.
9. When the meeting is finished, everyone hopes the countries will sign a TREATY.

 

Choose-an-answer version (easier)

1. There is an important meeting going on in Japan, in the city of __________.
TOKYO, KYOTO, SEOUL

2. People from _________ different countries are meeting there.
16, 160, 1600

3. They are worried about changes in the _________ .
CLIMATE, GOVERNMENT, STOCK MARKET

4. They are trying to agree about controlling pollution in the ___________.
WATER, HAIR, AIR

5. Many scientists think the earth will get ___________ if the pollution continues.
COLDER, WARMER, DARKER

6. The air pollution is caused partly by _______________.
AUTOMOBILES, DOCTORS, GUNS

7. If the climate changes in the future, there will be more ____________.
COMETS, HIGHWAYS, FLOODS

8. For some countries, it may be difficult to reduce pollution because it is __________.
EXPENSIVE, BORING, UNHEALTHY

9. When the meeting is finished, everyone hopes the countries will sign a _______.
LEASE, MONUMENT, TREATY

 

Fill-in-the-blank version (harder)

1. There is an important meeting going on in Japan, in the city of __________.

2. People from _________ different countries are meeting there.

3. They are worried about changes in the _________ .

4. They are trying to agree about controlling pollution in the ___________.

5. Many scientists think the earth will get ___________ if the pollution continues.

6. The air pollution is caused partly by _______________.

7. If the climate changes in the future, there will be more ____________.

8. For some countries, it may be difficult to reduce pollution because it is __________.

9. When the meeting is finished, everyone hopes the countries will sign a _______.

 


Editor's note: I'd be very interested to hear what you and your students thought of this activity! Thank you! We welcome teaching suggestions.--Anna Silliman.

 



Do you subscribe to Hands-on English?

Get lots more great activities like this one, in a 16-page issue mailed to you six times a year for $21. Order by mail, to P.O. Box 256, Crete, NE 68333 USA, or order online at www.handsonenglish.com!
See our order form: