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Date: January 1, 2009
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THE ARTICLE

Iraqi shoe-thrower trial postponed

The trial of the Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at President Bush has been postponed. Muntazer Al-Zaidi was due to appear in court on December 31st but his lawyers have appealed against his charges. Mr Al-Zaidi was originally charged with assault against a foreign head of state. This charge carries a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison. His lawyers are appealing for the lesser charge of insulting a head of state, which carries a maximum sentence of two years in jail. Al-Zaidi's lawyer, Dhiaa al-Saadi, ridiculed the idea that throwing shoes put George Bush in any danger. He asked: "Have you ever heard of anyone being killed by a shoe?" He also added that: "In Europe, they throw eggs and rotten tomatoes to insult. In Iraq, throwing a shoe is a symbol of disrespect."


 
 

Muntazer Al-Zaidi has been hailed as a hero all over the Middle East. His shoe throwing has also led to a number of online games in which points are scored for every shoe that hits the U.S. president. The maker of the shoes has seen his business soar overnight. He has had to employ dozens of extra workers to meet the demand for tens of thousands of pairs of the shoes. They are now sold as the ‘Bye-bye Bush’ shoes. The incident will become one of the most memorable images of George W. Bush’s term as president. His wife Laura was less than happy at the media coverage of the event. She told American TV reporters that Mr Al-Zaidi assaulted her husband. She said he only avoided injury because of his athleticism and sporting ability as he ducked to avoid the size-ten projectiles.


 


 

WARM-UPS

1. SHOES: Walk around the class and talk to other students about shoes. Change partners often. After you finish, sit with your 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.

 

trials / journalist / courts / assault / foreign leader / jail / rotten tomatoes / disrespect / hero / online games / soaring business / memorable images / athleticism / ducking

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

3. INSULTS: Complete the table below about insults in your country. Share what you wrote with other students. Change partners and share what you heard.

Insults involving

Why it’s an insult

My experiences

Shoes

 

 

Money

 

 

Food

 

 

Saying ‘no’

 

 

Religion

 

 

4. ASSAULT: Students A strongly believe the Iraqi shoe thrower should go to prison for 15 years for assaulting George W Bush; Students B strongly believe the Iraqi shoe thrower is a hero and should be free. Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

5. MEMORABLE IMAGES: What are your memorable images of 2009? Talk about these things with your partner(s). Change partners and talk again.

  • George W. Bush
  • Your country’s leader
  • Money
  • Sports
  • Tragedy
  • Environment
  • Happiness
  • One on my camera

6. HEAD OF STATE: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the term ‘head of state’. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.


 
 

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 man who threw shoes at George W Bush will never go to court.

T / F

b.

The shoe thrower could be sent to prison for 15 years.

T / F

c.

The man’s lawyer said shoes have killed many people.

T / F

d.

In Iraq, both shoes need to be thrown to show disrespect.

T / F

e.

The shoe thrower created his own online game.

T / F

f.

The shoe maker needed many more employees to meet demand.

T / F

g.

Laura Bush was unhappy at the way journalists reported the incident.

T / F

h.

Laura said her husband escaped injury because he was good at sport.

T / F

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

1.

journalist

a.

happening

2

postponed

b.

asking

3.

originally

c.

escaped

4.

appealing

d.

delayed

5.

insult

e.

rise

6.

hailed

f.

abuse

7.

soar

g.

reporter

8.

incident

h.

bent down

9.

avoided

i.

initially

10.

ducked

j.

praised

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

1.

due to appear in

a.

with assault

2

Mr Al-Zaidi was originally charged

b.

than happy

3.

This charge carries a maximum

c.

to insult

4.

they throw eggs and rotten tomatoes

d.

court on December 31st

5.

throwing a shoe is a symbol

e.

all over the Middle East

6.

Al-Zaidi has been hailed as a hero

f.

sporting ability

7.

one of the most memorable images

g.

of disrespect

8.

His wife Laura was less

h.

the size-ten projectiles

9.

his athleticism and

i.

sentence of 15 years

10.

he ducked to avoid

j.

of George W. Bush’s term


WHILE READING / LISTENING

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

The __________ of the Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at President Bush has been postponed. Muntazer Al-Zaidi was __________ to appear in court on December 31st but his lawyers have appealed against his __________. Mr Al-Zaidi was originally charged with assault against a foreign head of state. This charge __________ a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison. His lawyers are appealing for the __________ charge of insulting a head of state, which carries a maximum sentence of two years in jail. Al-Zaidi's lawyer, Dhiaa al-Saadi, ridiculed the __________ that throwing shoes put George Bush in any danger. He asked: "Have you ever heard of anyone being killed by a shoe?" He also added that: "In Europe, they __________ eggs and rotten tomatoes to insult. In Iraq, throwing a shoe is a __________ of disrespect."

 

throw
charges
lesser
symbol
trial
carries
due
idea

Muntazer Al-Zaidi has been __________ as a hero all over the Middle East. His shoe throwing has also led to a __________ of online games in which points are scored for every shoe that hits the U.S. president. The maker of the shoes has seen his business soar __________. He has had to employ dozens of extra workers to meet the __________ for tens of thousands of pairs of the shoes. They are now sold as the ‘Bye-bye Bush’ shoes. The incident will become one of the most memorable __________ of George W. Bush’s term as president. His wife Laura was less than happy at the __________ coverage of the event. She told American TV reporters that Mr Al-Zaidi assaulted her husband. She said he only __________ injury because of his athleticism and sporting ability as he __________ to avoid the size-ten projectiles.

 

avoided
overnight
ducked
hailed
images
number
media
demand

LISTENING:  Listen and fill in the spaces.

The trial of the Iraqi journalist ____________________ at President Bush has been postponed. Muntazer Al-Zaidi was ____________________ court on December 31st but his lawyers have appealed against his charges. Mr Al-Zaidi was originally ____________________ against a foreign head of state. This charge carries a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison. His lawyers are appealing ____________________ of insulting a head of state, which carries a maximum sentence of two years in jail. Al-Zaidi's lawyer, Dhiaa al-Saadi, ____________________ that throwing shoes put George Bush in any danger. He asked: "Have you ever heard of anyone being killed by a shoe?" He also added that: "In Europe, they throw eggs and rotten tomatoes to insult. In Iraq, throwing a shoe is a ____________________."

Muntazer Al-Zaidi has been ____________________ all over the Middle East. His shoe throwing has also led to a number of online games in which points are scored for every shoe that hits the U.S. president. The maker of the shoes has seen his ____________________. He has had to employ dozens of extra workers to ____________________ for tens of thousands of pairs of the shoes. They are now sold as the ‘Bye-bye Bush’ shoes. The incident will become one of the ______________________ of George W. Bush’s term as president. His wife Laura was less than happy at the media _____________________. She told American TV reporters that Mr Al-Zaidi assaulted her husband. She said he only avoided injury because of his athleticism and sporting ability as he ____________________ the size-ten projectiles.


 
 

AFTER READING / LISTENING

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

appear

court

 

 

 

  • 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:

  • due
  • originally
  • 15
  • two
  • heard
  • symbol
  • hero
  • points
  • overnight
  • dozens
  • less
  • ten

STUDENT SHOE THROWER SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about the Iraqi shoe thrower 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.

IRAQI SHOE THROWER 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 ‘insult’?

c)

What did you think when you first heard or saw the news of the shoe thrower?

d)

What kind of punishment do you think Muntazer Al-Zaidi should get?

e)

Do you think Muntazer Al-Zaidi should be charged with assaulting or insulting a head of state?

f)

Do you understand why Muntazer Al-Zaidi threw his shoes at George W. Bush?

g)

George W. Bush said he had no idea why the journalist threw his shoes at him. What do you think of this?

h)

Has your leader ever been publicly assaulted or insulted?

i)

Would you like to express your anger at a world leader? Who and why?

j)

Have you ever been publicly insulted?

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

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

a)

Did you like reading this article?

b)

Do you think Muntazer Al-Zaidi is a hero?

c)

Have you played any of the online show-thrower games?

d)

Do you think America’s security service needs anti-shoe training?

e)

What do you think President Bush would say to Muntazer Al-Zaidi if they met and had a chat?

f)

Do you know anyone who would like a pair of Bye-bye Bush shoes?

g)

Why do you think Laura Bush is less than happy with the media?

h)

Do you think presidents should train to survive public attacks?

i)

What other memorable images do you have of George W. Bush?

j)

What questions would you like to ask Muntazer Al-Zaidi?

LANGUAGE

The trial of the Iraqi journalist who (1) ____ his shoes at President Bush has been postponed. Muntazer Al-Zaidi was due to appear in court on December 31st but his lawyers have appealed against his charges. Mr Al-Zaidi was (2) ____ charged with assault against a foreign head of state. This charge carries a maximum sentence of 15 years (3) ____ prison. His lawyers are appealing for the lesser charge of insulting a head of state, which carries a maximum sentence of two years in jail. Al-Zaidi's lawyer, Dhiaa al-Saadi, (4) ____ the idea that throwing shoes put George Bush in any danger. He asked: "Have you ever (5) ____ of anyone being killed by a shoe?" He also added that: "In Europe, they throw eggs and rotten tomatoes to insult. In Iraq, throwing a shoe is a (6) ____ of disrespect."

Muntazer Al-Zaidi has been hailed as a hero (7) ____ over the Middle East. His shoe throwing has also led to a number of online games in which points are scored for every shoe that hits the U.S. president. The maker of the shoes has seen his business (8) ____ overnight. He has had to employ dozens of extra workers to    (9) ____ the demand for tens of thousands of pairs of the shoes. They are now sold (10) ____ the ‘Bye-bye Bush’ shoes. The incident will become one of the most memorable images of George W. Bush’s term as president. His wife Laura was less than (11) ____ at the media coverage of the event. She told American TV reporters that Mr Al-Zaidi assaulted her husband. She said he only avoided injury because of his athleticism and sporting ability as he (12) ____ to avoid the size-ten projectiles.

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

1.

(a)

thrown

(b)

throwing

(c)

threw off

(d)

threw

2.

(a)

originally

(b)

origin

(c)

original

(d)

originality

3.

(a)

on

(b)

in

(c)

by

(d)

at

4.

(a)

ridicules

(b)

ridicule

(c)

ridiculed

(d)

ridiculous

5.

(a)

hearing

(b)

hears

(c)

heard

(d)

herd

6.

(a)

symbols

(b)

symbol

(c)

symbolic

(d)

symbolize

7.

(a)

both

(b)

whole

(c)

every

(d)

all

8.

(a)

soar

(b)

soar

(c)

saw

(d)

so

9.

(a)

wave

(b)

meet

(c)

greet

(d)

contact

10.

(a)

was

(b)

has

(c)

is

(d)

as

11.

(a)

happiness

(b)

happily

(c)

happy

(d)

happier

12.

(a)

ducked

(b)

eagled

(c)

parroted

(d)

hawked

WRITING: 

Write about shoes 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 Muntazer Al-Zaidi. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. INSULTS: Make a poster about the different things people are insulted by around the world. What are the cultural reasons behind these insults? Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

4. HERO?: Write a magazine article about Muntazer Al-Zaidi. Include imaginary interviews with both him and George W. Bush.

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. DIALOGUE: Write an imaginary conversation between Muntazer Al-Zaidi and George W. Bush.

Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down any new words and expressions you hear from your partner(s). Role play your conversation in front of the class.

6. LETTER: Write a letter to Muntazer Al-Zaidi. Ask him three questions about his shoe-throwing. Give him three suggestions on what he can do to make his feelings known without throwing shoes. 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.

F

f.

T

g.

T

h.

T

SYNONYM MATCH:

1.

journalist

a.

reporter

2

postponed

b.

delayed

3.

originally

c.

initially

4.

appealing

d.

asking

5.

insult

e.

abuse

6.

hailed

f.

praised

7.

soar

g.

rise

8.

incident

h.

happening

9.

avoided

i.

escaped

10.

ducked

j.

bent down

PHRASE MATCH:

1.

due to appear in

a.

court on December 31st

2

Mr Al-Zaidi was originally charged

b.

with assault

3.

This charge carries a maximum

c.

sentence of 15 years

4.

they throw eggs and rotten tomatoes

d.

to insult

5.

throwing a shoe is a symbol

e.

of disrespect

6.

Al-Zaidi has been hailed as a hero

f.

all over the Middle East

7.

one of the most memorable images

g.

of George W. Bush’s term

8.

His wife Laura was less

h.

than happy

9.

his athleticism and

i.

sporting ability

10.

he ducked to avoid

j.

the size-ten projectiles

GAP FILL:

Iraqi shoe-thrower trial postponed

The trial of the Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at President Bush has been postponed. Muntazer Al-Zaidi was due to appear in court on December 31st but his lawyers have appealed against his charges. Mr Al-Zaidi was originally charged with assault against a foreign head of state. This charge carries a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison. His lawyers are appealing for the lesser charge of insulting a head of state, which carries a maximum sentence of two years in jail. Al-Zaidi's lawyer, Dhiaa al-Saadi, ridiculed the idea that throwing shoes put George Bush in any danger. He asked: "Have you ever heard of anyone being killed by a shoe?" He also added that: "In Europe, they throw eggs and rotten tomatoes to insult. In Iraq, throwing a shoe is a symbol of disrespect."

Muntazer Al-Zaidi has been hailed as a hero all over the Middle East. His shoe throwing has also led to a number of online games in which points are scored for every shoe that hits the U.S. president. The maker of the shoes has seen his business soar overnight. He has had to employ dozens of extra workers to meet the demand for tens of thousands of pairs of the shoes. They are now sold as the ‘Bye-bye Bush’ shoes. The incident will become one of the most memorable images of George W. Bush’s term as president. His wife Laura was less than happy at the media coverage of the event. She told American TV reporters that Mr Al-Zaidi assaulted her husband. She said he only avoided injury because of his athleticism and sporting ability as he ducked to avoid the size-ten projectiles.

LANGUAGE WORK

1 - d

2 - a

3 - b

4 - c

5 - c

6 - b

7 - d

8 - a

9 - b

10 - d

11 - c

12 - a

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