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UN Says World Shifting to Synthetic Drugs (25th June, 2010)


 

The United Nations reports that global drug use is changing. The U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime says that in the developing world, more people are using cocaine and heroin; whereas in the developed world, there is a rise in the use of synthetic drugs. The body reports that worldwide use of traditional drugs has gone down, while at the same time there has been a huge rise in the use of stimulants and prescription drugs. The UN estimates the global number of users of synthetic drugs is between 30 and 40 million. Antonio Maria Costa, director of the U.N. drug office, told reporters: "People are saying goodbye to heroin and they are nearly not so much enchanted by cocaine, but they are starting to use prescription drugs in amounts which make them addictive."

The report highlights a worrying trend of increased drug use in developing countries, especially in Asia and Africa. Mr Costa said demand for cocaine and heroin was growing on these two continents and that many governments did not have the resources to help addicts. "As a result," he said, "there is now the risk of a public health disaster in developing countries that would enslave masses of humanity to the misery of drug dependence." Costa also expresses his concern over the popularity of synthetic drugs. He warns there are “unlimited amounts of them, produced in mafia labs at trivial costs”. Costa also noted that globalization made it easier for illegal drug manufacturers to operate. They can be made near to their target markets and the raw materials are easy to find.


 
 

WARM-UPS

1. DRUGS: Walk around the class and talk to other students about drugs. 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.

 

United Nations / drugs / developing world / heroin / prescriptions / addictive / highlights / continents / resources / addicts / health disasters / human misery / mafia

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

3. ADDICTIONS: How dangerous are they? Complete this table with your partner(s). Change partners and share what you wrote. Change and share again.

 

Dangers

How to stop addiction

Drugs

 

 

Coffee

 

 

Shopping

 

 

TV

 

 

Cigarettes

 

 

Internet

 

 

Chocolate

 

 

4. KICK THE HABIT: Students A strongly believe drug addiction will one day be a thing of the past; Students B strongly believe the opposite.  Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

5. DANGERS: How dangerous are these for society? Rank them and share your rankings with your partner. Change partners and share your rankings again.

  • heroin
  • nicotine
  • caffeine
  • prescription drugs
  • marijuana
  • alcohol
  • legal highs
  • solvent sniffing (glue / petrol)

6. SYNTHETIC: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word ‘synthetic’. 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.

Drug companies are now making new drugs made from plastic.

T / F

b.

Drug use is on the increase in the developing world.

T / F

c.

Up to 40 million people use synthetic drugs.

T / F

d.

A drug expert said people say goodbye when they use heroin.

T / F

e.

Demand for cocaine and heroin is increasing in Africa and Asia.

T / F

f.

The drug expert warns of millions of people becoming drug addicts.

T / F

g.

The expert says there are limitless supplies of low-cost synthetic drugs.

T / F

h.

It is difficult for makers to find the ingredients for their illegal drugs.

T / F

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

1.

global

a.

particularly

2

whereas

b.

enormous

3.

huge

c.

delighted

4.

estimates

d.

minor

5.

enchanted

e.

guesses

6.

trend

f.

unhappiness

7.

especially

g.

worldwide

8.

misery

h.

ingredients

9.

trivial

i.

development

10.

raw materials

j.

while

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

1.

global drug use

a.

30 and 40 million

2

more people are

b.

dependence

3.

there has been a huge rise in

c.

using cocaine

4.

users of synthetic drugs is between

d.

prescription drugs

5.

starting to use

e.

to help addicts

6.

The report highlights

f.

is changing

7.

governments did not have the resources

g.

health disaster

8.

the risk of a public

h.

markets

9.

the misery of drug

i.

the use of stimulants

10.

made near to their target

j.

a worrying trend

 

WHILE READING / LISTENING

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

The United Nations reports that global drug use is ___________ . The U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime says that in the developing world, more people are using cocaine and heroin; ___________ in the developed world, there is a ___________ in the use of synthetic drugs. The body reports that worldwide use of traditional drugs has gone down, while at the same time there has been a ___________ rise in the ___________ of stimulants and prescription drugs. The UN estimates the global number of ___________ of synthetic drugs is between 30 and 40 million. Antonio Maria Costa, director of the U.N. drug office, told reporters: "People are saying ___________ to heroin and they are nearly not so much enchanted by cocaine, but they are starting to use prescription drugs in amounts which make them ___________."

 

 

 

users
rise
use
changing
goodbye
addictive
whereas
huge

The report highlights a worrying ___________ of increased drug use in developing countries, especially in Asia and Africa. Mr Costa said demand for cocaine and heroin was ___________ on these two continents and that many governments did not have the resources to help ___________. "As a result," he said, "there is now the risk of a public health ___________ in developing countries that would enslave masses of humanity to the ___________ of drug dependence." Costa also expresses his concern over the popularity of synthetic drugs. He warns there are “unlimited ___________ of them, produced in mafia labs at trivial ___________”. Costa also noted that globalization made it easier for illegal drug manufacturers to operate. They can be made near to their target ___________ and the raw materials are easy to find.

 

 

misery
costs
growing
disaster
markets
trend
amounts
addicts

LISTENING – Listen and fill in the gaps

The United Nations ______________________ use is changing. The U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime says that in the developing world, more people are using cocaine and heroin; ______________________ world, there is a rise in the use of synthetic drugs. The body reports that worldwide use of traditional ______________________, while at the same time there has been a huge rise in the use of stimulants and prescription drugs. The UN estimates the global ______________________ synthetic drugs is between 30 and 40 million. Antonio Maria Costa, director of the U.N. drug office, told reporters: "People ______________________ heroin and they are nearly not so much enchanted by cocaine, but they are starting to use prescription drugs in ______________________ addictive."

The report highlights ______________________ increased drug use in developing countries, especially in Asia and Africa. Mr Costa said demand for cocaine and heroin ______________________ two continents and that many governments did not have the resources to help addicts. "As a result," he said, "there ______________________ public health disaster in developing countries that would enslave masses of humanity to the misery of drug dependence." Costa also expresses ______________________ popularity of synthetic drugs. He warns there are “unlimited amounts of them, produced in mafia ______________________”. Costa also noted that globalization made it easier for illegal drug manufacturers to operate. They can be made ______________________ markets and the raw materials are easy to find.


 
 

AFTER READING / LISTENING

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

drug

addict

 

 

 

  • 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:

  • reports
  • whereas
  • huge
  • estimates
  • goodbye
  • amounts
  • trend
  • demand
  • addicts
  • misery
  • trivial
  • raw

STUDENT DRUGS SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about drugs 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.

DRUGS 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 ‘drugs’?

c)

Is there a big problem with drugs in your country?

d)

Why do people take drugs?

e)

Do you think drug addiction is becoming more or less of a problem?

f)

What do you think are the reasons for the changes in global drug use?

g)

How should children be educated about the dangers of drugs?

h)

What can governments do to discourage people from taking drugs?

i)

Should all drugs be banned, including nicotine, alcohol and caffeine?

j)

Do you think people worry about the addictive nature of drugs before they use them?

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

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

a)

Did you like reading this article?

b)

What should the world do to help people in Asia and Africa say no to drugs?

c)

What public health risks are there when many people are taking drugs?

d)

Do you thing drug abuse will increase or decrease over the next few decades?

e)

How do drugs destroy lives?

f)

Do movies and songs glamorize drugs?

g)

What solutions are there to stop the rise of synthetic drugs?

h)

What drug awareness programmes are there in your country?

i)

How would a world without illegal drugs be different?

j)

What questions would you like to ask U.N. drugs chief Antonio Maria Costa?

LANGUAGE – MULTIPLE CHOICE

The United Nations reports that global drug (1) ____ is changing. The U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime says that in the developing world, more people are using cocaine and heroin; whereas in the developed world, there is a (2) ____ in the use of synthetic drugs. The (3) ____ reports that worldwide use of traditional drugs has gone down, while at the same time there has been a huge rise in the use of stimulants and prescription drugs. The UN estimates the global number of users of synthetic drugs (4) ____ between 30 and 40 million. Antonio Maria Costa, director of the U.N. drug office, told reporters: "People are saying goodbye to heroin and they are (5) ____ not so much enchanted by cocaine, but they are starting to use prescription drugs in amounts which make them (6) ____."

The report highlights a worrying (7) ____ of increased drug use in developing countries, especially in Asia and Africa. Mr Costa said demand for cocaine and heroin was (8) ____ on these two continents and that many governments did not have the resources to help addicts. "As a (9) ____," he said, "there is now the risk of a public health disaster in developing countries that would enslave (10) ____ of humanity to the misery of drug dependence." Costa also expresses his concern over the popularity (11) ____ synthetic drugs. He warns there are “unlimited amounts of them, produced in mafia labs at trivial costs”. Costa also noted that globalization made it easier for illegal drug manufacturers to operate. They can be made near to their target markets and the (12) ____ materials are easy to find.

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

1.

(a)

using

(b)

use

(c)

uses

(d)

used

2.

(a)

risen

(b)

rises

(c)

rise

(d)

rose

3.

(a)

body

(b)

torso

(c)

frame

(d)

skeleton

4.

(a)

be

(b)

are

(c)

being

(d)

is

5.

(a)

nearest

(b)

nearer

(c)

nearly

(d)

near

6.

(a)

addictive

(b)

addiction

(c)

addict

(d)

additive

7.

(a)

trendsetter

(b)

trendy

(c)

trendiest

(d)

trend

8.

(a)

grown

(b)

growing

(c)

growth

(d)

grew

9.

(a)

cause

(b)

effect

(c)

answer

(d)

result

10.

(a)

massed

(b)

massing

(c)

masses

(d)

mass

11.

(a)

by

(b)

of

(c)

for

(d)

on

12.

(a)

raw

(b)

saw

(c)

paw

(d)

law

WRITING

Write about drugs 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 the dangers of synthetic drugs. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. DRUGS: Make a poster about synthetic drugs. Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

4. ADDICTED: Write a magazine article about a young person recently addicted to synthetic drugs. Include imaginary interviews with that person and his/her best friend.

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 U.N. drugs chief Antonio Maria Costa. Ask him three questions about drugs. Give him three ideas on how to stop the global rise in drug use. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a.

F

b.

T

c.

T

d.

F

e.

T

f.

T

g.

T

h.

F

SYNONYM MATCH:

1.

global

a.

worldwide

2

whereas

b.

while

3.

huge

c.

enormous

4.

estimates

d.

guesses

5.

enchanted

e.

delighted

6.

trend

f.

development

7.

especially

g.

particularly

8.

misery

h.

unhappiness

9.

trivial

i.

minor

10.

raw materials

j.

ingredients

PHRASE MATCH:

1.

global drug use

a.

is changing

2

more people are

b.

using cocaine

3.

there has been a huge rise in

c.

the use of stimulants

4.

users of synthetic drugs is between

d.

30 and 40 million

5.

starting to use

e.

prescription drugs

6.

The report highlights

f.

a worrying trend

7.

governments did not have the resources

g.

to help addicts

8.

the risk of a public

h.

health disaster

9.

the misery of drug

i.

dependence

10.

made near to their target

j.

markets

GAP FILL:

UN says world shifting to synthetic drugs

The United Nations reports that global drug use is changing. The U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime says that in the developing world, more people are using cocaine and heroin; whereas in the developed world, there is a rise in the use of synthetic drugs. The body reports that worldwide use of traditional drugs has gone down, while at the same time there has been a huge rise in the use of stimulants and prescription drugs. The UN estimates the global number of users of synthetic drugs is between 30 and 40 million. Antonio Maria Costa, director of the U.N. drug office, told reporters: "People are saying goodbye to heroin and they are nearly not so much enchanted by cocaine, but they are starting to use prescription drugs in amounts which make them addictive."

The report highlights a worrying trend of increased drug use in developing countries, especially in Asia and Africa. Mr Costa said demand for cocaine and heroin was growing on these two continents and that many governments did not have the resources to help addicts. "As a result," he said, "there is now the risk of a public health disaster in developing countries that would enslave masses of humanity to the misery of drug dependence." Costa also expresses his concern over the popularity of synthetic drugs. He warns there are “unlimited amounts of them, produced in mafia labs at trivial costs”. Costa also noted that globalization made it easier for illegal drug manufacturers to operate. They can be made near to their target markets and the raw materials are easy to find.

LANGUAGE WORK

1 - b

2 - c

3 - a

4 - d

5 - c

6 - a

7 - d

8 - b

9 - d

10 - c

11 - b

12 - a

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