The Reading / Listening - Level 5

A Syrian refugee who could speak just a word of English two years ago has passed his high school exams in Australia. Saad Al-Kaab, 19, graduated with top marks from one of Australia's biggest schools. His outstanding grades put him in the top 4 per cent of graduates in Melbourne. Saad escaped the civil war in Syria to start a new life. He said that it was "really hard" coming to Australia because he could not understand English. He added: "It really makes me sad to think that I have friends…back in Syria who were as good as me, but who didn't have the opportunity that I've had."



Saad tried to learn English from his cousins in Australia. Then he started to watch a politics show on television. It was a live broadcast of politicians quizzing their prime minister about different issues. He said the show helped his English because: "They use the best, persuasive language in parliament. They speak slowly and you can find the words." He said it was very different to Syria's parliament, where "all they do is clap". Saad is very thankful. He said: "I just want to say thank you so much to Australia for giving me the opportunity. It's revived me and given me a new life."

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Level 4 or  Level 6

Sources
  • http://www. bbc.co.uk /newsbeat/article/38293680/syrian-refugee-gets-top-results-at-australian-school
  • http://www. abc.net.au /news/2016-12-12/syrian-refugee-tops-year-12-class-with-96.65-atar/8112424
  • http://www. theage.com.au /national/secondary-education-victoria/it-all-started-with-a-shovel-how-one-vce-dux-escaped-a-bloody-war-20161212-gt97tx.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. A Syrian refugee who could speak
  2. passed his
  3. graduated
  4. His outstanding
  5. in the top 4 per cent
  6. escaped the civil
  7. It really makes me
  8. didn't have the opportunity
  1. war
  2. that I've had
  3. grades
  4. high school exams
  5. sad to think
  6. with top marks
  7. of graduates
  8. just a word of English

Paragraph 2

  1. learn English
  2. a politics
  3. It was a live
  4. politicians quizzing
  5. persuasive
  6. He said it was very
  7. all they do
  8. It's revived me and
  1. broadcast
  2. is clap
  3. show on television
  4. different
  5. from his cousins
  6. given me a new life
  7. their prime minister
  8. language

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

A Syrian refugee who could (1) ___________________ word of English two years ago has passed his high school exams in Australia. Saad Al-Kaab, 19, graduated (2) ___________________ from one of Australia's biggest schools. His outstanding grades (3) ___________________ top 4 per cent of graduates in Melbourne. Saad (4) ___________________ war in Syria to start a new life. He said that it was "really hard" coming to Australia because he could not understand English. He added: "It (5) ___________________ sad to think that I have friends…back in Syria who were as good as me, but who didn't have (6) ___________________ I've had."

Saad tried to learn English (7) ___________________ in Australia. Then he started to watch a (8) ___________________ television. It was a live broadcast of politicians (9) ___________________ prime minister about different issues. He said the show helped his English because: "They use the best, persuasive (10) ___________________. They speak slowly and you can find the words." He said it was very different to Syria's parliament, where "all (11) ___________________". Saad is very thankful. He said: "I just want to say thank you so much to Australia for giving me the opportunity. It's revived me and (12) ___________________ life."

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

ASyrianrefugeewhocouldspeakjustawordofEnglishtwoyearsagohas
passedhishighschoolexamsinAustralia.SaadAl-Kaab,19,graduated
ithtopmarksfromoneofAustralia'sbiggestschools.Hisoutstandinggra
desputhiminthetop4percentofgraduatesinMelbourne.Saadescapedt
hecivilwarinSyriatostartanewlife.Hesaidthatitwas"reallyhard"comin
gtoAustraliabecausehecouldnotunderstandEnglish.Headded:"Itreal
lymakesmesadtothinkthatIhavefriends…backinSyriawhowereasgoo
dasme,butwhodidn'thavetheopportunitythatI'vehad."Saadtriedtole
arnEnglishfromhiscousinsinAustralia.Thenhestartedtowatchapolitic
sshowontelevision.Itwasalivebroadcastofpoliticiansquizzingtheirpri
meministeraboutdifferentissues.HesaidtheshowhelpedhisEnglishbe
cause:"Theyusethebest,persuasivelanguageinparliament.Theyspe
akslowlyandyoucanfindthewords."HesaiditwasverydifferenttoSyria'
sparliament,where"alltheydoisclap".Saadisverythankful.Hesaid:"Ij
ustwanttosaythankyousomuchtoAustraliaforgivingmetheopportuni
ty.It'srevivedmeandgivenmeanewlife."

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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