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Date: Jul 24, 2005

Level: Harder (Try the easier lesson.)

Downloads: Word Doc | PDF Doc | Listening

Audio: (1:55 - 225.8 KB - 16kbps)

THE ARTICLE

North and South Korea have installed the first direct telephone link between their two countries in fifty years. All lines were disconnected after the Korean War ended in 1953. The only direct connection since then has been a single line between the two governments. Families and neighbors have been cut off from one another for five decades.

The landmark technological event is part of preparations for video reunions of families that have been separated since 1953. Just a few lucky families that have been divided for fifty years will soon get their chance to briefly talk to each other via a videophone on August 15, the 60th anniversary of the end of Japanese colonial rule.

As part of the technological revolution emerging on the Korean peninsula, a fax machine now also connects the two capitals. Unfortunately, only top-level government officials are authorized to use it. Receiving faxes from the outside world is still too dangerous an option for the highly secretive and paranoid North Korean regime.

Innovations continue with the laying of a fiber-optic cable linking the town of Munsan in South Korea to the North Korean city of Kaesong on Monday (July 25). This seems a token measure, as no one will be hooked up to take advantage of the broadband Internet connection. North Korea has banned the Internet and mobile phones.

WARM-UPS

1. PHONE HISTORY: In pairs / groups, talk about your history with the telephone. Can you remember using the phone as a child? What was your family phone like years ago? How important is the phone to you now? Have you given or received any happy or sad news over the phone?

2. QUICK DEBATE: Students A think the telephone is the greatest invention ever. Students B think the car is the greatest invention ever. Change partners often.

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

North Korea / South Korea / telephones / The Korean War / family reunions / videophones / technological revolutions / fax machines / the Internet / broadband

Have a chat about the topics you liked. For more conversation, change topics and partners frequently.

4. TELEPHONE: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with telephones. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.

5. MY MOBILE: If you have your mobile phone with you, put it on your desk for your partner(s) to see. Talk about your phones.

6. PHONE SENTENCES: Complete the five sentence starters below. Tell your partner(s) what you wrote and then talk about your sentences.

  1. Telephones are ___________________________________________.
  2. A telephone is ___________________________________________.
  3. Telephoning ___________________________________________.
  4. Without a telephone ___________________________________________.
  5. With a telephone ___________________________________________.
  6. My telephone ___________________________________________.

Change partners and compare what you talked about.


 
 

BEFORE READING / LISTENING

1. TRUE / FALSE: Look at the article’s headline and guess whether these sentences are true (T) or false (F):

a.

The first phone link in history was between North and South Korea.

T / F

b.

Just one phone line has connected the two Koreas since 1953.

T / F

c.

Korean families will soon be able to talk to each other by videophone.

T / F

d.

The videophone reunions will be just for a lucky few on one day only.

T / F

e.

There are thousands of fax machines connecting the two Koreas.

T / F

f.

North Korea is an extremely open country.

T / F

g.

One Internet cable will soon connect North and South Korea.

T / F

h.

Most North Koreans have mobile phones and Internet access.

T / F

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

a.

installed

move

b.

connection

fixed up

c.

landmark

leadership

d.

separated

outlawed

e.

emerging

modernization

f.

authorized

historic

g.

regime

line

h.

innovations

unfolding

i.

measure

permitted

j.

banned

divided

3. PHRASE MATCH: Match the following phrases from the article (sometimes more than one combination is possible):

a.

a single line

rule

b.

neighbors have been cut

fiber-optic cable

c.

landmark

off from one another

d.

briefly talk to each other

peninsula

e.

the end of Japanese colonial

paranoid North Korean regime

f.

Korean

up

g.

highly secretive and

between the two governments

h.

the laying of a

measure

i.

a token

via a videophone

j.

no one will be hooked

technological event

WHILE READING / LISTENING

GAP FILL: Put the words in the column on the right into the correct spaces.

Koreas joined by first phone link
 

North and South Korea have installed the first direct telephone _______ between their two countries in fifty years. All lines were disconnected after the Korean War ended in 1953. The only _______ connection since then has been a single line between the two governments. Families and neighbors have been _______ off from one another for five _______.

The _______ technological event is part of preparations for video reunions of families that have been separated since 1953. Just a few _______ families that have been divided for fifty years will soon get their chance to _______ talk to each other via a videophone on August 15, the 60th anniversary of the end of Japanese colonial _______.

 

 

landmark
cut
rule
link
briefly
decades
direct
lucky

As part of the technological revolution _______ on the Korean _______, a fax machine now also connects the two capitals. Unfortunately, only top-level government officials are authorized to use it. Receiving faxes from the outside world is still too dangerous an option for the highly secretive and _______ North Korean _______.

Innovations continue with the _______ of a fiber-optic cable linking the town of Munsan in South Korea to the North Korean city of Kaesong on Monday (July 25). This seems a _______ measure, as no one will be _______ up to take advantage of the broadband Internet connection. North Korea has _______ the Internet and mobile phones.

 

 

banned
laying
peninsula
hooked
paranoid
emerging
regime
token


 
 

AFTER READING / LISTENING

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

  • 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 gap fill. 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. STUDENT “TELEPHONE” SURVEY: In pairs / groups, write down questions about telephones.

  • Ask other classmates your questions and note down their answers.
  • Go back to your original partner / group and compare your findings.
  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

6. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall exactly how these were used in the text:

  • installed
  • disconnected
  • decades
  • landmark
  • divided
  • colonial
  • revolution
  • authorized
  • paranoid
  • cable
  • token
  • advantage

DISCUSSION

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

  1. What was your initial reaction to this headline?
  2. Did the headline make you want to read the article?
  3. What do you think of the separation of the two Koreas?
  4. How important is the telephone to you?
  5. What must it be like to be cut off from your family for 50 years?
  6. What would you say to a family member you hadn’t spoken to for fifty years?
  7. Why do you think North Korea has not allowed its people to talk to their family members in South Korea?
  8. What would you life be like without a telephone?
  9. What do you think of just one fax machine linking the Koreas?
  10. What do you think would happen if ordinary North Koreans got Internet access?

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

  1. Did you like reading this article?
  2. What did you think about what you read?
  3. Have you ever spoken to anyone via a videophone?
  4. What is your opinion of North Korea?
  5. Why do you think North Korea is so secretive and paranoid?
  6. How have the Internet and mobile phones changed your life?
  7. Does your country ban any technology you’d like to use?
  8. When do you think North Koreans will be able to live in an open society?
  9. What technological innovations would you like to see with mobile phones?
  10. Did you like this discussion?

AFTER DISCUSSION: Join another partner / group and tell them what you talked about.

  1. What question would you like to ask about this topic?
  2. What was the most interesting thing you heard?
  3. Was there a question you didn’t like?
  4. Was there something you totally disagreed with?
  5. What did you like talking about?
  6. Do you want to know how anyone else answered the questions?
  7. Which was the most difficult question?

SPEAKING

TECHNOLOGY: Ask your partner(s) questions by choosing a question starter in the first column with a word or phrase in the second column.

 

Have you ever…

What do you think of…

Do you…

What kind of…

Have you heard of…

When was the last time…

Could you live without…

Would you like…

mobile phone

Skype

e-mails

spam

phishing

the Internet

future

a higher speed Internet connection

videophone

telephone answering machine

voicemail

technology

Change partners and share what you heard from your earlier partner(s).

LISTENING

Listen and fill in the spaces.

Koreas joined by first phone link

North and South Korea have _________ the first direct telephone link between their two countries in fifty years. All lines were ____________ after the Korean War ended in 1953. The only direct connection since then has been a ______ _____ between the two governments. Families and neighbors have been ___ ___ from one another for five decades.

The _________ technological event is part of preparations for video ________ of families that have been separated since 1953. Just a few lucky families that have been divided for fifty years will soon get their chance to _______ _____ to each other via a videophone on August 15, the 60th anniversary of the end of Japanese ________ ____.

As part of the technological revolution _________ on the Korean _________, a fax machine now also connects the two capitals. Unfortunately, only top-level government officials are authorized __ ____ ___. Receiving faxes from the outside world is still too dangerous an option for the highly secretive and _________ North Korean _______.

Innovations continue with ___ _______ ___ a fiber-optic cable linking the town of Munsan in South Korea to the North Korean city of Kaesong on Monday (July 25). This seems a _______ _________, as no one will be _______ ___ to take advantage of the broadband Internet connection. North Korea has banned the Internet and mobile phones.

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 more information on the relations between North and South Korea. Share your findings with your class in the next lesson.

3. FUTURE PHONES: Make a poster showing what mobile phones will be capable of twenty years from now. Show your posters to your classmates in your next lesson. Did you all think about similar things?

4. LETTER TO KIM JONG IL: Write a letter to North Korean leader Kim Jong Il. Explain your thoughts on why he has banned the Internet and mobile phones in his country. Read your letter to your classmates in your next lesson. Did you all write about similar things?

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a. F

b. T

c. T

d. T

e. F

f. F

g. T

h. F

SYNONYM MATCH:

a.

installed

fixed up

b.

connection

line

c.

landmark

historic

d.

separated

divided

e.

emerging

unfolding

f.

authorized

permitted

g.

regime

leadership

h.

innovations

modernization

i.

measure

move

j.

banned outlawed

PHRASE MATCH:

a.

a single line

between the two governments

b.

neighbors have been cut

off from one another

c.

landmark

technological event

d.

briefly talk to each other

via a videophone

e.

the end of Japanese colonial

rule

f.

Korean

peninsula

g.

highly secretive and

paranoid North Korean regime

h.

the laying of a

fiber-optic cable

i.

a token

measure

j.

no one will be hooked

up

GAP FILL:

Koreas joined by first phone link

North and South Korea have installed the first direct telephone link between their two countries in fifty years. All lines were disconnected after the Korean War ended in 1953. The only direct connection since then has been a single line between the two governments. Families and neighbors have been cut off from one another for five decades.

The landmark technological event is part of preparations for video reunions of families that have been separated since 1953. Just a few lucky families that have been divided for fifty years will soon get their chance to briefly talk to each other via a videophone on August 15, the 60th anniversary of the end of Japanese colonial rule.

As part of the technological revolution emerging on the Korean peninsula, a fax machine now also connects the two capitals. Unfortunately, only top-level government officials are authorized to use it. Receiving faxes from the outside world is still too dangerous an option for the highly secretive and paranoid North Korean regime.

Innovations continue with the laying of a fiber-optic cable linking the town of Munsan in South Korea to the North Korean city of Kaesong on Monday (July 25). This seems a token measure, as no one will be hooked up to take advantage of the broadband Internet connection. North Korea has banned the Internet and mobile phones.

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