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Date: Mar 16, 2008
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Audio: 2:00 - 468.1KB - 32kbps
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1,000 IDEAS FOR ESL CLASSES: Breaking News English.com's e-Book

THE ARTICLE

Paul McCartney fights for kangaroos

Ex-Beatle Sir Paul McCartney has joined the fight to stop the slaughter of 400-500 kangaroos in Australia. McCartney is a member of the animal rights group Vegetarians International Voice for Animals (VIVA). He says in a message on the VIVA website: "There is an urgent need for action to protect kangaroos from a barbaric industry which slaughters them for meat and leather. Please do all you can to help VIVA end this shameful massacre.” Protest leader Pat O’Brien, president of the Wildlife Protection Association of Australia, said: "We are all determined to see that the kangaroos are not killed. There is a lot of anger in a lot of people about this.” He warned: “We will stand in between the kangaroo and the darts if necessary." About 70 protestors are on standby ready to act as human shields.


 
 

The Australian government says the cull is necessary because the kangaroos are ruining the habitat of rare lizards and insects. The native grassland these small creatures share with the kangaroos is disappearing fast. European settlers destroyed much of it when they sewed grass seeds imported from Britain to start the cattle and sheep industries. Government scientists say there is plenty of other land in Australia where kangaroos can live. They point out that kangaroos must stay off the threatened native grassland so other rare, indigenous species can survive. Australia’s environment minister Peter Garrett told protestors the kangaroos would not suffer. He said professionals would put the animals to sleep with a painless dart and then give them lethal injections.

WARM-UPS

1. KANGAROOS: Walk around the class and talk to other students about kangaroos. Change partners often. After you finish, sit with your original partner(s) and share what you found out.

2. CHAT: In pairs / groups, decide which of these topics or words from the article are most interesting and which are most boring.

 

fights / slaughter / animal rights / barbaric industries / anger / human shields /  rare lizards / small creatures / grass seeds / being put to sleep / lethal injections

Have a chat about the topics you liked. Change topics and partners frequently.

3. KILLING ANIMALS: With your partner(s), fill in this table about whether or not it’s OK to kill animals. Change partners and share your findings.

Situation

OK or not?

My reasons

to help save endangered species

for research into new medicines

for meat

for their fur or skin

to stop diseases spreading to humans

to reduce large numbers of pests

4. ANIMAL RIGHTS: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the term ‘animal rights’. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.

5. QUICK ROLE PLAY: Students A strongly believe that humans should never kill animals, for any reason; Students B strongly believe it is OK to kill some animals to protect rare species. Change partners again and talk about your roles and conversations.


 
 

BEFORE READING / LISTENING

1. TRUE / FALSE: Look at the article’s headline and guess whether these sentences are true (T) or false (F):

a.

Paul McCartney wants to help save 400-500 kangaroos from dying.

T / F

b.

McCartney has flown to Australia to give a message on television.

T / F

c.

A leading protestor said anger is high among many people.

T / F

d.

People are ready to risk being shot to protect the kangaroos.

T / F

e.

Australia’s government wants to protect threatened species.

T / F

f.

European farmers led to the decline of Australia’s native grassland.

T / F

g.

The environment minister said the kangaroos would suffer slightly.

T / F

h.

The minister said the animals would be killed by electrocution.

T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article:

1.

slaughter

a.

deadly

2

urgent

b.

prepared

3.

shameful

c.

natural surroundings

4.

barbaric

d.

serious

5.

on standby

e.

indigenous

6.

habitat

f.

planted

7.

native

g.

killing

8.

sewed

h.

feel pain

9.

suffer

i.

cruel

10.

lethal

j.

disgraceful

3. PHRASE MATCH: Match the following phrases from the article (sometimes more than one combination is possible):

1.

joined the fight to stop the slaughter

a.

native grassland

2

protect kangaroos from a

b.

to act as human shields

3.

We are all determined to see that the

c.

grass seeds

4.

There is a lot of anger

d.

of rare lizards

5.

protestors are on standby ready

e.

barbaric industry

6.

the kangaroos are ruining the habitat

f.

in a lot of people

7.

they sewed

g.

painless dart

8.

kangaroos must stay off the threatened

h.

injections

9.

put the animals to sleep with a

i.

of 400-500 kangaroos

10.

give them lethal

j.

kangaroos are not killed

WHILE READING / LISTENING

GAP FILL: Put the words into the gaps in the text.

Ex-Beatle Sir Paul McCartney has joined the __________ to stop the slaughter of 400-500 kangaroos in Australia. McCartney is a __________ of the animal rights group Vegetarians International Voice for Animals (VIVA). He says in a message on the VIVA website: "There is an __________ need for action to protect kangaroos from a barbaric industry which slaughters them for meat and __________. Please do all you can to help VIVA end this shameful __________.” Protest leader Pat O’Brien, president of the Wildlife Protection Association of Australia, said: "We are all __________ to see that the kangaroos are not killed. There is a lot of anger in a lot of people about this.” He __________: “We will stand in between the kangaroo and the darts if necessary." About 70 protestors are on standby ready to act as __________ shields.

 

determined
urgent
massacre
fight
human
warned
member
leather

The Australian government says the cull is __________ because the kangaroos are ruining the __________ of rare lizards and insects. The native grassland these small creatures share with the kangaroos is disappearing __________. European settlers destroyed much of it when they sewed grass seeds __________ from Britain to start the cattle and sheep industries. Government scientists say there is __________ of other land in Australia where kangaroos can live. They __________ out that kangaroos must stay off the threatened native grassland so other rare, indigenous species can survive. Australia’s environment minister Peter Garrett told protestors the kangaroos would not __________. He said professionals would put the animals to sleep with a painless dart and then give them __________ injections.

 

imported
 habitat

suffer
point
lethal
necessary
plenty
fast

LISTENING:  Listen and fill in the spaces.

Ex-Beatle Sir Paul McCartney has joined _____________________ slaughter of 400-500 kangaroos in Australia. McCartney _____________________ animal rights group Vegetarians International Voice for Animals (VIVA). He says in a message on the VIVA website: "There is _____________________ action to protect kangaroos from a barbaric industry which slaughters them for meat and leather. Please _____________________ VIVA end this shameful massacre.” Protest leader Pat O’Brien, president of the Wildlife Protection Association of Australia, said: "We _____________________ see that the kangaroos are not killed. There is a lot of anger in a lot of people about this.” He warned: “We _____________________ kangaroo and the darts if necessary." About 70 protestors _____________________ to act as human shields.

The Australian government _____________________ because the kangaroos are ruining the habitat of rare lizards and insects. The native grassland these _____________________ the kangaroos is disappearing fast. European settlers destroyed _____________________ sewed grass seeds imported from Britain to start the cattle and sheep industries. Government scientists _____________________ other land in Australia where kangaroos can live. They point out that kangaroos _____________________ threatened native grassland so other rare, indigenous species can survive. Australia’s environment minister Peter Garrett told protestors the _____________________. He said professionals would put the animals to sleep with a painless dart _____________________ lethal injections.


 
 

AFTER READING / LISTENING

1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionaries / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words ‘urgent’ and ‘need’.

urgent

need

 

 

 

  • Share your findings with your partners.
  • Make questions using the words you found.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

  • Share your questions with other classmates / groups.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

3. GAP FILL: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the activity. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

5. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall exactly how these were used in the text:

  • stop
  • message
  • barbaric
  • end
  • determined
  • stand
  • necessary
  • share
  • imported
  • point
  • suffer
  • injections

STUDENT KANGAROO SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about kangaroos in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper.

When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

STUDENT 1

_____________

STUDENT 2

_____________

STUDENT 3

_____________

Q.1.

Q.2.

Q.3.

Q.4.

Q.5.

  • Now return to your original partner and share and talk about what you found out. Change partners often.
  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

DISCUSSION

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

a)

What did you think when you read the headline?

b)

What springs to mind when you hear the word ‘kangaroo’?

c)

What are your feelings about this story?

d)

Would you join the fight to help save the kangaroos?

e)

Would you ever join the fight to save any animal?

f)

Is killing animals for fur and leather barbaric?

g)

Can you understand why there is a lot of anger in a lot of people?

h)

Do you admire people who would risk their lives to save animals?

i)

Do you think Paul McCartney joining the fight will do any good?

--------------------------------------------------------------------

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

a)

Did you like reading this article?

b)

Do you think the Australian government is right – that the kangaroos should be killed to save the rare lizards?

c)

What should the Australian government do to protect its native grasslands besides kill kangaroos?

d)

Why do you think the government wants to kill the kangaroos instead of moving them to a place they won’t threaten lizards?

e)

What threatened species are there in your country?

f)

Does it make the slaughter better if the animals don’t suffer?

g)

What endangered species are you concerned about most?

h)

What questions would you like to ask Australia’s environment minister Peter Garrett?

i)

Did you like this discussion?

LANGUAGE

CORRECT WORD: Put the correct words from a–d below in the article.

Ex-Beatle Sir Paul McCartney has joined the fight (1) ____ stop the slaughter of 400-500 kangaroos in Australia. McCartney is a member of the animal   (2) ____ group Vegetarians International Voice for Animals (VIVA). He says in a message on the VIVA website: "There is an urgent need (3) ____ action to protect kangaroos from a barbaric industry which slaughters them for meat and (4) ____. Please do all you can to help VIVA end this shameful massacre.” Protest leader Pat O’Brien, president of the Wildlife Protection Association of Australia, said: "We are all (5) ____ to see that the kangaroos are not killed. There is a lot of anger in a lot of people about this.” He warned: “We will stand in between the kangaroo and the darts if necessary." About 70 protestors are on standby ready to act as (6) ____ shields.

The Australian government says the cull is necessary because the kangaroos are (7) ____ the habitat of rare lizards and insects. The native grassland these small creatures share with the kangaroos is disappearing fast. European (8) ____ destroyed much of it when they sewed grass seeds imported from Britain to start the cattle and sheep industries. Government scientists say there is plenty of other land in Australia where kangaroos can live. They (9) ____ out that kangaroos must stay off the threatened (10) ____ grassland so other rare, indigenous species can survive. Australia’s environment minister Peter Garrett told protestors the kangaroos would not (11) ____. He said professionals would put the animals to (12) ____ with a painless dart and then give them lethal injections.

1.

(a)

for

(b)

as

(c)

to

(d)

by

2.

(a)

right

(b)

rights

(c)

write

(d)

writes

3.

(a)

for

(b)

as

(c)

to

(d)

by

4.

(a)

letter

(b)

leader

(c)

lather

(d)

leather

5.

(a)

deter

(b)

determine

(c)

determined

(d)

deterred

6.

(a)

person

(b)

beings

(c)

human

(d)

man

7.

(a)

ruined

(b)

ruining

(c)

ruins

(d)

running

8.

(a)

settlers

(b)

settles

(c)

settler

(d)

settlement

9.

(a)

highlight

(b)

point

(c)

indicate

(d)

show

10.

(a)

native

(b)

nativity

(c)

natives

(d)

nations

11.

(a)

suffered

(b)

suffers

(c)

suffering

(d)

suffer

12.

(a)

snooze

(b)

snore

(c)

bed

(d)

sleep

WRITING: 

Write about kangaroos for 10 minutes. Correct your partner’s paper.

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________________________

HOMEWORK

1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find out about Australia’s kangaroos. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. ENDANGERED: Make a poster about two endangered species. Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

4. HUMAN SHIELDS: Write a magazine article about the protestors who want to act as human shields. Include imaginary interviews with them and with the kangaroos they want to protect.

Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down new words and expressions.

5. LETTER: Write a letter to Australia’s environment minister Peter Garrett. Ask him three questions about his decision to cull the kangaroos. Give him three pieces of advice on what he should do instead of killing the kangaroos. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a. T

b. F

c. T

d. T

e. T

f. T

g. F

h. F

SYNONYM MATCH:

1.

slaughter

a.

killing

2

urgent

b.

serious

3.

shameful

c.

disgraceful

4.

barbaric

d.

cruel

5.

on standby

e.

prepared

6.

habitat

f.

natural surroundings

7.

native

g.

indigenous

8.

sewed

h.

planted

9.

suffer

i.

feel pain

10.

lethal

j.

deadly

PHRASE MATCH:

1.

joined the fight to stop the slaughter

a.

of 400-500 kangaroos

2

protect kangaroos from a

b.

barbaric industry

3.

We are all determined to see that the

c.

kangaroos are not killed

4.

There is a lot of anger

d.

in a lot of people

5.

protestors are on standby ready

e.

to act as human shields

6.

the kangaroos are ruining the habitat

f.

of rare lizards

7.

they sewed

g.

grass seeds

8.

kangaroos must stay off the threatened

h.

native grassland

9.

put the animals to sleep with a

i.

painless dart

10.

give them lethal

j.

injections

GAP FILL:

Paul McCartney fights for kangaroos

Ex-Beatle Sir Paul McCartney has joined the fight to stop the slaughter of 400-500 kangaroos in Australia. McCartney is a member of the animal rights group Vegetarians International Voice for Animals (VIVA). He says in a message on the VIVA website: "There is an urgent need for action to protect kangaroos from a barbaric industry which slaughters them for meat and leather. Please do all you can to help VIVA end this shameful massacre.” Protest leader Pat O’Brien, president of the Wildlife Protection Association of Australia, said: "We are all determined to see that the kangaroos are not killed. There is a lot of anger in a lot of people about this.” He warned: “We will stand in between the kangaroo and the darts if necessary." About 70 protestors are on standby ready to act as human shields.

The Australian government says the cull is necessary because the kangaroos are ruining the habitat of rare lizards and insects. The native grassland these small creatures share with the kangaroos is disappearing fast. European settlers destroyed much of it when they sewed grass seeds imported from Britain to start the cattle and sheep industries. Government scientists say there is plenty of other land in Australia where kangaroos can live. They point out that kangaroos must stay off the threatened native grassland so other rare, indigenous species can survive. Australia’s environment minister Peter Garrett told protestors the kangaroos would not suffer. He said professionals would put the animals to sleep with a painless dart and then give them lethal injections.

LANGUAGE WORK

1 - c

2 - b

3 - a

4 - d

5 - c

6 - c

7 - b

8 - a

9 - b

10 - a

11 - d

12 - d

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