The Reading / Listening - Level 5

Couples should put more effort into their marriage just before March and August each year. Sociologists have identified spikes in the number of divorces in these two months. Researchers from the University of Washington analysed data for divorces filed in the U.S. between 2001 and 2015. The scientists found that over this 14-year period, divorce rates peaked in August, after the summer holidays, and in March, after the Christmas and New Year holidays. Some researchers said the divorces could be because of money problems caused by the winter and summer holidays.



Researcher Julie Brines suggested that couples felt stressed and down when the excitement of holidays was over. She said: "People tend to face the holidays with rising expectations." She added: "[Holidays] represent periods in the year when there's the anticipation or the opportunity for a new beginning, a new start, something different, a transition into a new period of life. It's like an optimism cycle." Couples usually spend more time together during holidays. This may actually make tensions worse rather than bring people closer together.

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Level 4 or  Level 6

Sources
  • http://www.sciencealert.com/researchers-find-there-are-2-months-when-couples-are-most-likely-to-get-divorced
  • http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/312444.php
  • http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-3752624/Holidays-BAD-marriage-Divorce-rates-spike-summer-winter-breaks.html


Make sure you try all of the online activities for this reading and listening - There are dictations, multiple choice, drag and drop activities, crosswords, hangman, flash cards, matching activities and a whole lot more. Please enjoy :-)



Phrase Matching

Paragraph 1

  1. put more effort
  2. just before
  3. spikes in the number
  4. divorces
  5. over this
  6. divorce rates
  7. New Year
  8. money problems caused
  1. of divorces
  2. peaked in August
  3. filed in the U.S.
  4. by the winter
  5. holidays
  6. into their marriage
  7. 14-year period
  8. March

Paragraph 2

  1. couples felt stressed
  2. the excitement of holidays
  3. People tend to
  4. rising
  5. the opportunity for a new
  6. a transition into a new period
  7. This may actually make
  8. bring people
  1. tensions worse
  2. face the holidays
  3. beginning
  4. closer together
  5. of life
  6. and down
  7. expectations
  8. was over

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

Couples should (1) ___________________ into their marriage just before March and August each year. Sociologists have (2) ___________________ the number of divorces in these two months. Researchers from the University of Washington analysed (3) ___________________ filed in the U.S. between 2001 and 2015. The scientists found that over this 14-year period, divorce (4) ___________________ August, after the summer holidays, and in March, after the Christmas and New Year holidays. Some researchers said the divorces (5) ___________________ of money problems (6) ___________________ winter and summer holidays.

Researcher Julie Brines suggested that (7) ___________________ and down when the excitement of holidays was over. She said: "People tend to face the holidays with (8) ___________________." She added: "[Holidays] (9) ___________________ in the year when there's the anticipation or the opportunity for a new beginning, (10) ___________________, something different, a transition into (11) ___________________ of life. It's like an optimism cycle." Couples usually spend more time together during holidays. This may actually make tensions (12) ___________________ bring people closer together.

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

CouplesshouldputmoreeffortintotheirmarriagejustbeforeMarchand
Augusteachyear.Sociologistshaveidentifiedspikesinthenumberofdiv
orcesinthesetwomonths.ResearchersfromtheUniversityofWashingt
onanalyseddatafordivorcesfiledintheU.S.between2001and2015.Th
escientistsfoundthatoverthis14-yearperiod,divorceratespeakedinA
ugust,afterthesummerholidays,andinMarch,aftertheChristmasand
NewYearholidays.Someresearcherssaidthedivorcescouldbebecause
ofmoneyproblemscausedbythewinterandsummerholidays.Researc
herJulieBrinessuggestedthatcouplesfeltstressedanddownwhenthee
xcitementofholidayswasover.Shesaid:"Peopletendtofacetheholiday
swithrisingexpectations."Sheadded:"[Holidays]representperiodsint
heyearwhenthere'stheanticipationortheopportunityforanewbeginni
ng,anewstart,somethingdifferent,atransitionintoanewperiodoflife.I
t'slikeanoptimismcycle."Couplesusuallyspendmoretimetogetherdur
ingholidays.Thismayactuallymaketensionsworseratherthanbringpe
opleclosertogether.

Student survey

Write five GOOD questions about this topic 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.

(Please look at page 12 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

Discussion — Write your own questions

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

(a) ________________

(b) ________________

(c) ________________

(d) ________________

(e) ________________

(f) ________________

(g) ________________

(h) ________________

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

(i) ________________

(j) ________________

(k) ________________

(l) ________________

(m) ________________

(n) ________________

(o) ________________

(p) ________________





Free writing

Write about this topic for 10 minutes. Comment on your partner’s paper.

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Answers

(Please check your answers against the article above.

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