The Reading / Listening - Borders - Level 1

Governments spend years or even decades making borders. A farmer in Belgium did not need so long. He changed the border between Belgium and France in a few minutes. He made Belgium about 1,000 square meters bigger and France smaller. He moved a border stone 2.29 metres inside France. The stone he moved was put there in 1819. The farmer moved it so he could drive his tractor around his field more easily.



Moving a border between two countries can lead to war. Luckily, Belgian and French diplomats saw the funny side and avoided a crisis. The mayor of the Belgian town said: "The stone was placed there in 1819 following the defeat of Napoleon....We will find the person who moved the stone....I still have to verify who [he] is." The mayor added: "We know exactly where the stone was before. It was right next to a tree."

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Borders - Level 0 Borders - Level 2   or  Borders - Level 3

Sources
  • https://edition.cnn.com/travel/article/belgium-farmer-moves-french-border/index.html
  • https://www.euronews.com/2021/05/04/belgium-gains-territory-after-farmer-moves-french-border
  • https://www.brusselstimes.com/belgium/167925/belgian-farmer-moves-accidentally-french-border-erquelinnes-napoleon-boundary-marker-aurelie-welonek-mayor-bousignies-sur-roc-david-lavaux/


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. years or even
  2. A farmer in Belgium did
  3. He changed
  4. in a
  5. about 1,000 square
  6. He moved a border
  7. 2.29 metres
  8. drive his
  1. stone
  2. the border
  3. meters
  4. tractor
  5. decades
  6. few minutes
  7. not need so long
  8. inside France

Paragraph 2

  1. lead
  2. diplomats saw the funny
  3. The stone was placed
  4. in 1819 following the defeat
  5. We will find the person who
  6. I still have to verify who
  7. know exactly where
  8. It was right next
  1. to a tree
  2. moved the stone
  3. side
  4. the stone was
  5. there
  6. of Napoleon
  7. to war
  8. he is

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

Governments spend years (1) ___________________ making borders. A farmer in Belgium did (2) ___________________ long. He changed the border between Belgium and France in a few minutes. He made Belgium about 1,000 (3) __________________ and France smaller. He (4) ___________________ stone 2.29 metres inside France. The stone (5) ___________________ put there in 1819. The farmer moved it so he could (6) ___________________ around his field more easily.

Moving a border between two countries can (7) ___________________. Luckily, Belgian and French diplomats saw the funny side and (8) ___________________. The mayor of the Belgian town said: "The stone (9) ___________________ in 1819 following (10) ___________________ Napoleon....We will find the person who moved the stone....I still have (11) ___________________ [he] is." The mayor added: "We know exactly where the stone was before. It was (12) ___________________ a tree."

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

Governmentsspendyearsorevendecadesmakingborders.Afarmerin
Belgiumdidnotneedsolong.HechangedtheborderbetweenBelgiuman
dFranceinafewminutes.HemadeBelgiumabout1,000squaremetersbi
ggerandFrancesmaller.Hemovedaborderstone2.29metresinsideFra
nce.Thestonehemovedwasputtherein1819.Thefarmermoveditsohe
coulddrivehistractoraroundhisfieldmoreeasily.Movingaborderbetwe
entwocountriescanleadtowar.Luckily,BelgianandFrenchdiplomatss
awthefunnysideandavoidedacrisis.ThemayoroftheBelgiantownsaid:
"Thestonewasplacedtherein1819followingthedefeatofNapoleon....
Wewillfindthepersonwhomovedthestone....Istillhavetoverifywho[h
e]is."Themayoradded:"Weknowexactlywherethestonewasbefore.It
wasrightnexttoatree."

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.

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

Answers

(Please check your answers against the article above.

Help Support This Web Site

  • Please consider helping Breaking News English.com

Sean Banville's Book

Thank You