The Reading / Listening - Beluga Whale - Level 4

A professor said a beluga whale found in the Arctic Ocean near Norway's northernmost point could be a Russian spy. Locals said the beluga was very tame and enjoyed being touched. The professor said the whale had a harness for a spy camera that was "most likely" from the Russian Navy. However, images show "Equipment of St. Petersburg" written on the harness in English. A local said: "It could have swum from St. Petersburg, Florida."



There is online speculation about the whale. The US Navy uses dolphins so it could have come from Florida. A Russian naval analyst downplayed links to the Russian military. He said: "Even if there are military programs for using marine animals for navy purposes, they are unlikely to be belugas." Another Russian military official said: "If we were using this animal for spying, do you really think we'd attach a mobile phone number with [a] message?"

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Beluga Whale - Level 5 or  Beluga Whale - Level 6

Sources
  • https://www.cbsnews.com/news/beluga-whale-linked-to-russian-military-is-affectionate-fetches-rings-for-locals-in-norway/
  • https://www.yahoo.com/news/norway-thinks-captured-beluga-whale-030744381.html
  • https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-48090616


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. near Norway's northernmost
  2. the beluga was very
  3. the whale had
  4. a spy
  5. most
  6. from the
  7. written on the harness
  8. It could have
  1. Russian Navy
  2. point
  3. camera
  4. swum
  5. tame
  6. in English
  7. likely
  8. a harness

Paragraph 2

  1. There is online
  2. The US Navy uses
  3. it could have come
  4. A Russian naval
  5. downplayed links to
  6. Even if there are military
  7. using marine animals for navy
  8. using this animal
  1. from Florida
  2. for spying
  3. the Russian military
  4. purposes
  5. speculation
  6. analyst
  7. dolphins
  8. programs

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

A professor said a beluga (1) ___________________ the Arctic Ocean near Norway's northernmost (2) ___________________ a Russian spy. Locals said the beluga (3) ___________________ and enjoyed being touched. The professor said the whale (4) ___________________ for a spy camera that was "most likely" from the Russian Navy. (5) ___________________ "Equipment of St. Petersburg" written on the harness in English. A local said: "It could (6) ___________________ St. Petersburg, Florida."

There (7) ___________________ about the whale. The US Navy uses dolphins so it could have come from Florida. A (8) ___________________ downplayed links to the Russian military. He said: "(9) ___________________ are military programs for using marine animals for navy purposes, they (10) ___________________ be belugas." Another Russian military official said: "If we were using this (11) ___________________, do you really think we'd (12) ___________________ phone number with [a] message?"

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

AprofessorsaidabelugawhalefoundintheArcticOceannearNorway'sn
orthernmostpointcouldbeaRussianspy.Localssaidthebelugawasvery
tameandenjoyedbeingtouched.Theprofessorsaidthewhalehadaharn
essforaspycamerathatwas"mostlikely"fromtheRussianNavy.Howev
er,imagesshow"EquipmentofSt.Petersburg"writtenontheharnessin
English.Alocalsaid:"ItcouldhaveswumfromSt.Petersburg,Florida."T
hereisonlinespeculationaboutthewhale.TheUSNavyusesdolphinssoi
tcouldhavecomefromFlorida.ARussiannavalanalystdownplayedlink
stotheRussianmilitary.Hesaid:"Eveniftherearemilitaryprogramsfor
usingmarineanimalsfornavypurposes,theyareunlikelytobebelugas."
AnotherRussianmilitarysaid:"Ifwewereusingthisanimalforspying,do
youreallythinkwe'dattachamobilephonenumberwith[a]message?"

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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