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February 16, 2010

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Grandparents Increase Risk of Obesity in Children

Leaving your children with their grandparents may be bad for the little ones’ health. This is according to new research in the ‘International Journal of Obesity’. The British study showed that children who are looked after by their grandparents tend to me more overweight. Researchers looked at over 12,000 toddlers between the ages of nine months and three years. Their data showed that grandparents increased the risk of obesity in the children by as much as 34 per cent. Kids who are looked after by their parents or who go to nurseries had no similar risk of weight problems. The research also showed that children of richer parents were more at risk, especially if the mother had a management position and/or a university education.


This research could help reduce the rate of obesity in Britain. Almost a quarter of pre-schoolers are overweight or obese. These new statistics should send an important message to grandparents – stop filling your grandchildren with snacks and sugary treats. We all know how our grandparents like to spoil us. It is the same all over the world. The research did not look into why young children are more at risk of obesity with their grandparents. However, there are several possible reasons. One is that older people might be less aware of proper nutrition and so give their grandchildren unhealthy food. Another possible cause is that older people are less active and might not play with the children. It might also be that British people in general are becoming less active.


 
 

WARM-UPS

1. GRANDPARENTS: Walk around the class and talk to other students about grandparents. Change partners often. Sit with your first partner(s) and share your findings.

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

 

grandparents / obesity / toddlers / data / weight problems / management / university / statistics / important messages / snacks / sugary treats / nutrition / being less active

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

3. GRANDMA KNOWS BEST: Does she (or grandpa)? Complete this table with your partner(s). Change partners and share what you wrote. Change and share again.

Better at…

Grandparents

Parents

Discipline

 

 

Cooking & nutrition

 

 

Playing

 

 

Teaching about life

 

 

Understanding

 

 

Computer stuff

 

 

4. OBESITY: Students A strongly believe people will be thinner and healthier in the future; Students B strongly believe obesity will get worse.  Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

5. OVERWEIGHT: Rank these causes of kids being overweight and share your rankings with your partner. The biggest cause at the top.

  • grandparents
  • school canteens
  • TV advertising
  • supermarkets
  • kids’ friends
  • poor parenting
  • convenience stores
  • governments

6. WEIGHT: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word ‘weight’. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.


 
 

BEFORE READING / LISTENING

1. TRUE / FALSE: Read the headline. Guess if  a-h  below are true (T) or false (F).

a.

A study says grandparents do all they can to fatten up their grandkids.

T / F

b.

Researchers analyzed over 12,000 grandparents over the age of 70.

T / F

c.

Grandparents caring for kids can increase the risk of obesity by 34%.

T / F

d.

Kids of mothers who went to university are more at risk of obesity.

T / F

e.

Nearly 25 per cent of British toddlers have problems with their weight.

T / F

f.

Grandparents the world over like to give their grandkids sweet things.

T / F

g.

The article says older people are more aware of nutrition.

T / F

h.

People in Britain are getting more exercise than ever before.

T / F

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

1.

the little ones

a.

causes

2

study

b.

kindergartens

3.

tend to

c.

research

4.

toddlers

d.

dynamic

5.

nurseries

e.

children

6.

reduce

f.

correct

7.

reasons

g.

broadly speaking

8.

proper

h.

(be) more likely to

9.

active

i.

cut

10.

in general

j.

pre-school kids

3. PHRASE MATCH:  (Sometimes more than one choice is possible.)

1.

bad for the little

a.

toddlers

2

looked after

b.

of proper nutrition

3.

Researchers looked at over 12,000

c.

position

4.

weight

d.

an important message

5.

a management

e.

of obesity

6.

help reduce the rate

f.

problems

7.

statistics should send

g.

ones

8.

grandparents like to

h.

becoming less active

9.

less aware

i.

by their grandparents

10.

people in general are

j.

spoil us

 


 
 

AFTER READING / LISTENING

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

grand

parent

 

 

 

  • 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 how they were used in the text:

  • little
  • tend
  • data
  • similar
  • richer
  • education
  • quarter
  • message
  • sugary
  • spoil
  • proper
  • general

STUDENT GRANDPARENTS SURVEY

From  http://www.BreakingNewsEnglish.com/1002/100216-grandparents.html

Write five GOOD questions about grandparents 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.

GRANDPARENTS 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 ‘grandparents’?

c)

How important are grandparents?

d)

In what ways do you think grandparents might be harmful to their grandchildren’s health?

e)

What do you think of the research in this article?

f)

Were you surprised at any thing in the article?

g)

Why do you think children from richer families are more at risk of obesity?

h)

Why might a child be more at risk of becoming obese if his or her mother has a university education?

i)

Did you have any weight problems when you were younger?

j)

Were your grandparents good or bad for your health?

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

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

a)

Did you like reading this article?

b)

How can you reduce obesity rates in your country?

c)

Do you think grandparents will listen and take note of this research?

d)

Do you think grandparents (or anyone else) who make their grandchildren obese should be reported for child abuse?

e)

What do you think of grandparents who give lots of sweets and cakes to their grandchildren?

f)

Do you think older people know less about nutrition?

g)

Are today’s game-playing, web-surfing parents good for kids?

h)

What kind of grandparent will you be (are you)?

i)

Will obesity be more or less of a problem in the future?

j)

What questions would you like to ask the report’s authors?

LANGUAGE – MULTIPLE CHOICE

Leaving your children with their grandparents may be bad for the little (1) ____ health. This is according to new research in the ‘International Journal of Obesity’. The British study showed that children who are looked after by their grandparents (2) ____ to be more overweight. Researchers looked at over 12,000 toddlers between the (3) ____ of nine months and three years. Their data showed that grandparents increased the risk of obesity (4) ____ the children by as much as 34 per cent. Kids who are looked after by their parents or who go to nurseries had no (5) ____ risk of weight problems. The research also showed that children of richer parents were more at risk, especially if the mother had a management position and/(6) ____ a university education.

This research could help (7) ____ the rate of obesity in Britain. Almost a quarter of pre-schoolers are overweight or obese. These new statistics should send an important message to grandparents – stop (8) ____ your grandchildren with snacks and sugary treats. We all know how our grandparents like to (9) ____ us. It is the same all over the world. The research did not look into why young children are    (10) ____ at risk of obesity with their grandparents. However, there are several possible reasons. One is that older people might be (11) ____ aware of proper nutrition and so give their grandchildren unhealthy food. Another possible cause is that older people are less active and might not play with the children. It might also be that British people in (12) ____ are becoming less active.

Put the correct words from the table below in the above article.

1.

(a)

once

(b)

ones

(c)

one’s

(d)

ones’

2.

(a)

tend

(b)

trend

(c)

trendy

(d)

tent

3.

(a)

ageless

(b)

ages

(c)

aged

(d)

aging

4.

(a)

at

(b)

by

(c)

to

(d)

in

5.

(a)

simile

(b)

similarity

(c)

similar

(d)

smiling

6.

(a)

plus

(b)

or

(c)

nor

(d)

also

7.

(a)

reduction

(b)

reducing

(c)

reduces

(d)

reduce

8.

(a)

filling

(b)

filing

(c)

feeling

(d)

failing

9.

(a)

soil

(b)

spoil

(c)

foil

(d)

toil

10.

(a)

other

(b)

much

(c)

added

(d)

more

11.

(a)

low

(b)

fewer

(c)

less

(d)

smaller

12.

(a)

general

(b)

generals

(c)

genealogy

(d)

generalize

WRITING

Write about grandparents 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 more about obesity. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. OBESITY: Make a poster about obesity and the problems it causes. How can we reduce it? Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

4. GRAND GRANDPARENT: Write a magazine article about a loving grandparent who gives sweets, cakes and candies to his/her overweight grandchild because (s)he loves them. Include imaginary interviews with that grandparent, the grandchild and a nutritionist.

Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down any new words and expressions you hear from your partner(s).

5. LETTER: Write a letter to a grandparent who gives sweets, cakes and candies to his/her overweight grandchild. Ask him/her three questions about his/her actions. Give him/her three pieces of advice on how to help his/her grandchild’s obesity problem. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a.

F

b.

F

c.

T

d.

T

e.

T

f.

T

g.

F

h.

F

SYNONYM MATCH:

1.

the little ones

a.

children

2

study

b.

research

3.

tend to

c.

(be) more likely to

4.

toddlers

d.

pre-school kids

5.

nurseries

e.

kindergartens

6.

reduce

f.

cut

7.

reasons

g.

causes

8.

proper

h.

correct

9.

active

i.

dynamic

10.

in general

j.

broadly speaking

PHRASE MATCH:

1.

bad for the little

a.

ones

2

looked after

b.

by their grandparents

3.

Researchers looked at over 12,000

c.

toddlers

4.

weight

d.

problems

5.

a management

e.

position

6.

help reduce the rate

f.

of obesity

7.

statistics should send

g.

an important message

8.

grandparents like to

h.

spoil us

9.

less aware

i.

of proper nutrition

10.

people in general are

j.

becoming less active

GAP FILL:

Grandparents increase risk of obesity in children

Leaving your children with their grandparents may be bad for the little ones’ health. This is according to new research in the ‘International Journal of Obesity’. The British study showed that children who are looked after by their grandparents tend to be more overweight. Researchers looked at over 12,000 toddlers between the ages of nine months and three years. Their data showed that grandparents increased the risk of obesity in the children by as much as 34 per cent. Kids who are looked after by their parents or who go to nurseries had no similar risk of weight problems. The research also showed that children of richer parents were more at risk, especially if the mother had a management position and/or a university education.

This research could help reduce the rate of obesity in Britain. Almost a quarter of pre-schoolers are overweight or obese. These new statistics should send an important message to grandparents – stop filling your grandchildren with snacks and sugary treats. We all know how our grandparents like to spoil us. It is the same all over the world. The research did not look into why young children are more at risk of obesity with their grandparents. However, there are several possible reasons. One is that older people might be less aware of proper nutrition and so give their grandchildren unhealthy food. Another possible cause is that older people are less active and might not play with the children. It might also be that British people in general are becoming less active.

LANGUAGE WORK

1 - d

2 - a

3 - b

4 - c

5 - c

6 - b

7 - d

8 - a

9 - b

10 - d

11 - c

12 - a

 

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