The Reading / Listening - Children - Level 5

There are the fewest number of children in Japan since records began. There were 170,000 fewer children in the year ending March 2018 than in the previous year. Japan's government issued a report showing the falling numbers. According to the statistics, the number of children aged 14 or under dropped for the 37th consecutive year. There was also a record low of 12.3 per cent in the ratio of children to the overall population. This was the 44th year of decline in a row. This ratio is the lowest among countries with a population of 40 million or more.



Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has tried to address the country's dwindling birth rate. He introduced measures to encourage lower-income families to have more children. However, these have had little success. This is coupled with the fact that fewer Japanese people are getting married. Demographers say this is a "ticking time-bomb". The number of annual births in 2016 fell below one million for the first time since records began in 1899. By 2050, Japan will have 23 per cent fewer citizens. This means an aging society and a greatly reduced workforce.

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Children - Level 4 or  Children - Level 6

Sources
  • https://asia.nikkei.com/Economy/Japan-s-plunging-population-adds-urgency-to-immigration-talk
  • http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2018-05/04/c_137156459.htm
  • http://www.scmp.com/news/asia/east-asia/article/2144754/number-japanese-children-declines-37th-year-row-now-record-low


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. since records
  2. Japan's government issued
  3. According to the
  4. dropped for the 37th
  5. a record low of
  6. the ratio of children to the
  7. the 44th year of decline in
  8. countries with a population
  1. 12.3 per cent
  2. a row
  3. a report
  4. of 40 million
  5. began
  6. consecutive year
  7. statistics
  8. overall population

Paragraph 2

  1. the country's dwindling
  2. encourage lower-
  3. fewer Japanese people
  4. this is a ticking
  5. fell below one million
  6. Japan will have 23 per cent
  7. This means an
  8. a greatly reduced
  1. aging society
  2. are getting married
  3. for the first time
  4. workforce
  5. income families
  6. time-bomb
  7. fewer citizens
  8. birth rate

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

There are (1) ___________________ children in Japan since records began. There were 170,000 fewer children in (2) ___________________ March 2018 than in the previous year. Japan's government issued a report showing the falling numbers. According (3) ___________________, the number of children aged 14 or under dropped for the (4) ___________________. There was also a record low of 12.3 per cent in (5) ___________________ children to the overall population. This was the 44th year of decline in a row. This ratio is the lowest among countries with (6) ___________________ 40 million or more.

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has (7) ___________________ the country's (8) ___________________. He introduced measures to encourage lower-income families to have more children. However, these have (9) ___________________. This is coupled with the fact that fewer Japanese people are getting married. Demographers say this is a "(10) ___________________". The number of annual births in 2016 fell below one million for (11) ___________________ since records began in 1899. By 2050, Japan will have 23 per cent fewer citizens. This means an aging society and (12) ___________________ workforce.

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

TherearethefewestnumberofchildreninJapansincerecordsbegan.Th
erewere170,000fewerchildrenintheyearendingMarch2018thaninth
epreviousyear.Japan'sgovernmentissuedareportshowingthefalling
numbers.Accordingtothestatistics,thenumberofchildrenaged14oru
nderdroppedforthe37thconsecutiveyear.Therewasalsoarecordlowo
f12.3percentintheratioofchildrentotheoverallpopulation.Thiswasthe
44thyearofdeclineinarow.Thisratioisthelowestamongcountrieswith
apopulationof40millionormore.Japan'sPrimeMinisterShinzoAbehast
riedtoaddressthecountry'sdwindlingbirthrate.Heintroducedmeasur
estoencouragelower-incomefamiliestohavemorechildren.Howev
er,thesehavehadlittlesuccess.ThisiscoupledwiththefactthatfewerJa
panesepeoplearegettingmarried.Demographerssaythisisa"tickingti
me-bomb".Thenumberofannualbirthsin2016fellbelowonemillionfort
hefirsttimesincerecordsbeganin1899.By2050,Japanwillhave23perc
entfewercitizens.Thismeansanagingsocietyandagreatlyreducedwor
kforce.

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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