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Japanese Return $78m Lost Tsunami Cash (20th August, 2011)


 

Five months after the devastating earthquake and tsunami that ripped apart Japan’s northern coastline and people’s lives, cash and valuables washed away have been returned to their owners. Since the double disasters struck in March, Japanese people and search and rescue crews have handed in thousands of wallets and 5,700 safes found in the debris. A total of $48 million in cash has been turned in to police stations across northern Japan. One safe alone contained a million dollars in banknotes. This is welcome news for those reunited with their valuables who thought they had lost everything in the tsunami. It will help some rebuild their lives. It is also a fitting tribute to the honesty of the Japanese people.

Japan’s National Police Agency says nearly all the valuables found in the three hardest hit areas have been returned to their owners. Police spokesman Koetsu Saiki from the Miyagi Prefectural Police explained the difficulty his officers had in reuniting the cash with its owners, saying: "The fact that these safes were washed away, meant the homes were washed away too. We first had to determine if the owners were alive and then find where they had been evacuated to." He said that finding out who a safe belonged to was the easy part as it usually contained bankbooks and other documents with names and addresses. One grateful resident, Torazo Chiba, 65, whose home was washed away by the tsunami said: "This has inspired me to try hard again."


WARM-UPS

1. HONESTY: Walk around the class and talk to other students about honesty. 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.

 

devastating / coastline / valuables / disasters / rescue / debris / banknotes / tribute / honesty / safe / washed away / evacuated / documents / grateful / inspired / try hard

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

3. LOST: How would losing these affect your life? Complete this table and share what you wrote with your partner(s). Change partners and share what you heard. Change and share again.

Your…

How it’d affect your life

What you’d do

house

 

 

money

 

 

mobile phone

 

 

music

 

 

most treasured possession

 

 

clothes

 

 

4. HONESTY - THE BEST POLICY: Students A strongly believe honesty is always the best policy; Students B strongly believe it’s sometimes necessary to be dishonest.  Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

5. INSPIRING: Write a sentence about the Japanese and this article using each of these words. Share what you wrote with your partner(s). Change partners and share again.

  • inspiring
  • honesty
  • rebuild
  • stoical
  • tribute
  • evacuated
  • grateful
  • admirable

6. TSUNAMI: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word ‘tsunami’. 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 Japanese businessman has had $78 million returned to him.

T / F

b.

People found and handed in to police 5,700 safes.

T / F

c.

One safe contained ten million dollars.

T / F

d.

The Japanese people will use the money for a tribute to honesty.

T / F

e.

Most of the cash has been returned to its owners.

T / F

f.

Police said it was impossible to find out if owners of safes were alive.

T / F

g.

Police said it was easy to find the owners once the safes were open.

T / F

h.

One resident is inspired to try hard in life by having his cash returned.

T / F

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

1.

devastating

a.

motivated

2

debris

b.

worst affected

3.

welcome

c.

remains

4.

fitting

d.

testimony

5.

tribute

e.

find out

6.

hardest hit

f.

thankful

7.

determine

g.

suitable

8.

evacuated

h.

good

9.

grateful

i.

catastrophic

10.

inspired

j.

removed

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

1.

devastating

a.

in the debris

2

cash and

b.

news

3.

5,700 safes found

c.

the owners were alive

4.

This is welcome

d.

tribute

5.

a fitting

e.

earthquake and tsunami

6.

the three hardest

f.

was the easy part

7.

reuniting the cash

g.

to try hard again

8.

determine if

h.

valuables

9.

finding out who a safe belonged to

i.

hit areas

10.

This has inspired me

j.

with its owners


 
 

WHILE READING / LISTENING

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

Five months after the (1) ____________ earthquake and tsunami that ripped apart Japan’s northern (2) ____________ and people’s lives, cash and valuables washed away have been returned to their owners. Since the (3) ____________ disasters struck in March, Japanese people and search and rescue crews have (4) ____________ in thousands of wallets and 5,700 safes found in the debris. A total of $48 million in cash has been turned in to police stations across northern Japan. One safe (5) ____________ contained a million dollars in banknotes. This is (6) ____________ news for those (7) ____________ with their valuables who thought they had lost everything in the tsunami. It will help some rebuild their lives. It is also a fitting (8) ____________ to the honesty of the Japanese people.

 

 

 

handed
reunited
coastline
welcome
devastating
tribute
double
alone

Japan’s National Police Agency says nearly all the valuables found in the three (9) ____________ hit areas have been returned to their owners. Police spokesman Koetsu Saiki from the Miyagi Prefectural Police (10) ____________ the difficulty his officers had in reuniting the cash with its owners, saying: "The (11) ____________ that these safes were washed away, meant the homes were washed away too. We first had to (12) ____________ if the owners were alive and then find where they had been evacuated to." He said that finding out who a safe (13) ____________ to was the easy part as it usually contained bankbooks and other (14) ____________ with names and addresses. One (15) ____________ resident, Torazo Chiba, 65, whose home was washed away by the tsunami said: "This has (16) ____________ me to try hard again."

 

 

determine
grateful
explained
inspired
hardest
belonged
fact
documents

LISTENING – Listen and fill in the gaps

Five months after the devastating earthquake and tsunami ______________ Japan’s northern coastline and people’s lives, cash and valuables washed away have been returned to their owners. Since the __________________ in March, Japanese people and search and rescue crews have handed in thousands of wallets and 5,700 safes __________________. A total of $48 million in cash has been turned in to police stations across northern Japan. __________________ contained a million dollars in banknotes. This is welcome news __________________ with their valuables who thought they had lost everything in the tsunami. It will help some rebuild their lives. It is also __________________ the honesty of the Japanese people.

Japan’s National Police Agency says nearly all the valuables found in the _____________________ have been returned to their owners. Police spokesman Koetsu Saiki from the Miyagi Prefectural Police explained the difficulty his officers __________________ the cash with its owners, saying: "The fact that these safes were washed away, meant the homes were washed away too. We first __________________ the owners were alive and then find where they had been evacuated to." He said that finding out who a safe belonged to __________________ as it usually contained bankbooks and other documents with names and addresses. __________________, Torazo Chiba, 65, whose home was washed away by the tsunami said: "This __________________ try hard again."

AFTER READING / LISTENING

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

tsunami

cash

 

 

 

  • 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:

  • after
  • double
  • 5,700
  • alone
  • lost
  • honesty
  • hardest
  • difficulty
  • first
  • easy
  • documents
  • inspired

STUDENT HONESTY SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about honesty 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.

HONESTY 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 ‘valuables’?

c)

What three adjectives would you use to describe this article (and why)?

d)

What do you think of the return of the $78 million washed away in the tsunami?

e)

What would you do if you found a wallet in a disaster area?

f)

Have you ever got something back that you lost? How did you feel?

g)

What do you think the returned cash and valuables means to the owners?

h)

What do you think this news says about Japanese people?

i)

Do you think people in your country would be as honest?

j)

Would you prefer to read happy news like this or the usual sad news we get?

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

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

a)

Did you like reading this article?

b)

Do you think honesty is always the best policy or are there times when it isn’t?

c)

Do we learn honesty or is it natural to us?

d)

Why do people become dishonest?

e)

Do you think it’s a good idea to keep so much cash in a safe at home?

f)

On a scale of 1 to 10 (1 = amazingly honest), how honest are you?

g)

How do you react to people who are dishonest with you?

h)

What would you give to someone who returned something precious to you?

i)

What do you think Torazo Chiba will try hard to do?

j)

What questions would you like to ask police spokesman Koetsu Saiki?

LANGUAGE – MULTIPLE CHOICE

Five months after the (1) ____ earthquake and tsunami that (2) ____ apart Japan’s northern coastline and people’s lives, cash and valuables washed away have been returned to their owners. Since the (3) ____ disasters struck in March, Japanese people and search and rescue crews have handed in thousands of wallets and 5,700 safes found in the debris. A total of $48 million (4) ____ cash has been turned in to police stations across northern Japan. One safe (5) ____ contained a million dollars in banknotes. This is welcome news for those reunited with their valuables who thought they had lost everything in the tsunami. It will help some rebuild their lives. It is also a (6) ____ tribute to the honesty of the Japanese people.

Japan’s National Police Agency says nearly all the valuables found in the three hardest (7) ____ areas have been returned to their owners. Police spokesman Koetsu Saiki from the Miyagi Prefectural Police explained the (8) ____ his officers had (9) ____ reuniting the cash with its owners, saying: "The fact that these safes were washed away, meant the homes were washed away too. We first had to (10) ____ if the owners were alive and then find where they had been evacuated to." He said that finding out who a safe belonged to was the easy part (11) ____ it usually contained bankbooks and other documents with names and addresses. One grateful resident, Torazo Chiba, 65, whose home was washed away by the tsunami said: "This has (12) ____ me to try hard again."

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

1.

(a)

devastated

(b)

devastation

(c)

devastate

(d)

devastating

2.

(a)

lipped

(b)

ripped

(c)

dipped

(d)

tipped

3.

(a)

double

(b)

duo

(c)

twice

(d)

twosome

4.

(a)

at

(b)

by

(c)

in

(d)

on

5.

(a)

lonely

(b)

lone

(c)

alone

(d)

loner

6.

(a)

biting

(b)

fitting

(c)

hitting

(d)

sitting

7.

(a)

hit

(b)

punched

(c)

smacked

(d)

slapped

8.

(a)

difficult

(b)

diffident

(c)

diffusion

(d)

difficulty

9.

(a)

on

(b)

in

(c)

at

(d)

so

10.

(a)

detrimental

(b)

deterrent

(c)

detergent

(d)

determine

11.

(a)

is

(b)

was

(c)

as

(d)

has

12.

(a)

inspired

(b)

expired

(c)

perspired

(d)

conspired

WRITING

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

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

4. RETURNED CASH: Write a magazine article about the return of the $78 million. Include imaginary interviews with volunteers who found the cash and people reunited with it..

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 Japanese search and rescue worker. Ask him/her three questions about looking for and finding the cash and valuables. Give him/her three of your thoughts on his/her actions and those of the many other Japanese who handed in what they found in the debris. 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.

F

d.

F

e.

T

f.

F

g.

T

h.

T

SYNONYM MATCH:

1.

devastating

a.

catastrophic

2

debris

b.

remains

3.

welcome

c.

good

4.

fitting

d.

suitable

5.

tribute

e.

testimony

6.

hardest hit

f.

worst affected

7.

determine

g.

find out

8.

evacuated

h.

removed

9.

grateful

i.

thankful

10.

inspired

j.

motivated

PHRASE MATCH:

1.

devastating

a.

earthquake and tsunami

2

cash and

b.

valuables

3.

5,700 safes found

c.

in the debris

4.

This is welcome

d.

news

5.

a fitting

e.

tribute

6.

the three hardest

f.

hit areas

7.

reuniting the cash

g.

with its owners

8.

determine if

h.

the owners were alive

9.

finding out who a safe belonged to

i.

was the easy part

10.

This has inspired me

j.

to try hard again

GAP FILL:

Japanese return $78m lost tsunami cash

Five months after the (1) devastating earthquake and tsunami that ripped apart Japan’s northern (2) coastline and people’s lives, cash and valuables washed away have been returned to their owners. Since the (3) double disasters struck in March, Japanese people and search and rescue crews have (4) handed in thousands of wallets and 5,700 safes found in the debris. A total of $48 million in cash has been turned in to police stations across northern Japan. One safe (5) alone contained a million dollars in banknotes. This is (6) welcome news for those (7) reunited with their valuables who thought they had lost everything in the tsunami. It will help some rebuild their lives. It is also a fitting (8) tribute to the honesty of the Japanese people.

Japan’s National Police Agency says nearly all the valuables found in the three (9) hardest hit areas have been returned to their owners. Police spokesman Koetsu Saiki from the Miyagi Prefectural Police (10) explained the difficulty his officers had in reuniting the cash with its owners, saying: "The (11) fact that these safes were washed away, meant the homes were washed away too. We first had to (12) determine if the owners were alive and then find where they had been evacuated to." He said that finding out who a safe (13) belonged to was the easy part as it usually contained bankbooks and other (14) documents with names and addresses. One (15) grateful resident, Torazo Chiba, 65, whose home was washed away by the tsunami said: "This has (16) inspired me to try hard again."

LANGUAGE WORK

1 - d

2 - b

3 - a

4 - c

5 - c

6 - b

7 - a

8 - d

9 - b

10 - d

11 - c

12 - a

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