The Reading / Listening - Full Stop - Level 5

In British English it is the full stop; in American English the period. This punctuation mark has been used for centuries to end sentences. Its use is changing today. A report says the full stop is "intimidating" to young people. They view it as a sign of anger. This is especially so on social media, where many youngsters largely do not use punctuation, except for lots of exclamation marks!!!!! A famous linguist said: "Usage of full stops is being 'revised in a really fundamental way'. People simply do not put full stops in, unless they want to make a point."



Linguists studied how technology is changing language. One said: "If you send a text message without a full stop, it's already obvious that you've concluded the message." Young people tend to look at finished text messages with full stops as being insincere. A journalist wrote that a full stop is "simply not necessary". She said: "It's clear when you've finished your thought, so what function does the period fulfill?...Using a period in messaging...can come across as if you're quite cross or annoyed." She added full stops are now being used to emphasise single words.

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Full Stop - Level 4 or  Full Stop - Level 6

Sources
  • https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8657089/Full-stop-intimidating-young-people-interpret-sign-anger-linguists-say.html
  • https://www.scotsman.com/read-this/young-people-are-intimidated-full-stops-text-messages-heres-psychology-explained-2951084
  • https://nypost.com/2020/08/24/young-people-dont-trust-anyone-who-use-this-punctuation-mark/


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. punctuation
  2. used for centuries to
  3. They view it as a
  4. This is especially
  5. lots of exclamation
  6. Usage of full stops is
  7. in a really fundamental
  8. unless they want to
  1. so on social media
  2. way
  3. end sentences
  4. make a point
  5. being revised
  6. mark
  7. sign of anger
  8. marks

Paragraph 2

  1. how technology is changing
  2. obvious that you've concluded
  3. look at finished text
  4. being
  5. simply not
  6. It's clear when you've
  7. come across as if you're
  8. used to emphasise single
  1. the message
  2. quite cross
  3. insincere
  4. words
  5. messages
  6. language
  7. finished your thought
  8. necessary

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

In British English it is the full stop; in American                                (1) ___________________. This punctuation mark has been used for centuries to end sentences. Its use (2) ___________________. A report says the full stop is "intimidating" to young people. They view it as a (3) ___________________. This is especially so on social media, where many youngsters (4) ___________________ use punctuation, except for lots of exclamation marks!!!!! A famous linguist said: "Usage of full stops (5) ___________________ in a really fundamental way'. People simply do not put full stops in, unless they want to (6) ___________________."

Linguists (7) ___________________ is changing language. One said: "If you send a text message without a full stop, it's already obvious that you've (8) ___________________." Young people tend to look at finished text messages with full stops (9) ___________________. A journalist wrote that a full stop is "simply not necessary". She said: "(10) ___________________ you've finished your thought, so what function does (11) ___________________?...Using a period in messaging...can come across as if you're quite (12) ___________________." She added full stops are now being used to emphasise single words.

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

InBritishEnglishitisthefullstop;inAmericanEnglishtheperiod.Thispun
ctuationmarkhasbeenusedforcenturiestoendsentences.Itsuseischa
ngingtoday.Areportsaysthefullstopis"intimidating"toyoungpeople.T
heyviewitasasignofanger.Thisisespeciallysoonsocialmedia,wherem
anyyoungsterslargelydonotusepunctuation,exceptforlotsofexclama
tionmarks!!!!!Afamouslinguistsaid:"Usageoffullstopsisbeing'revise
dinareallyfundamentalway'.Peoplesimplydonotputfullstopsin,unles
stheywanttomakeapoint."Linguistsstudiedhowtechnologyischangin
glanguage.Onesaid:"Ifyousendatextmessagewithoutafullstop,it'sal
readyobviousthatyou'veconcludedthemessage."Youngpeopletendt
olookatfinishedtextmessageswithfullstopsasbeinginsincere.Ajourn
alistwrotethatafullstopis"simplynotnecessary".Shesaid:"It'sclearw
henyou'vefinishedyourthought,sowhatfunctiondoestheperiodfulfill?
...Usingaperiodinmessaging...cancomeacrossasifyou'requitecrosso
rannoyed."Sheaddedfullstopsarenowbeingusedtoemphasisesingle
words.

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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