Week99

[World News ★] Human Trafficking in Romania

[People ★] Superhero Window Cleaners

[People ★★] Man in a hot-air balloon

[World News ★★] Prisoners Save a Guard

[Animals ★★] Baby bird and boxer dog

[Travel ★★★] A five-star hotel to be built near Havana’s Intl. Airport

[Health ★★★] 33% Dubai school kids overweight or obese

[People ★★★] Retiring policewoman donates 100 million won

[World News ★★★★] This Russian City Is Called the ‘Graveyard of the Earth’

[Business ★★★★] Single Dinner at Singapore Restaurant Costs $2M

Single Dinner at Singapore Restaurant Costs $2M

[Business ★★★]

1076246-11-20160719141852

(P1) In the ultimate act of lavish absurdity, Singapore restaurant Ce La Vi is partnering with Russian company World of Diamonds Group to offer what is being billed as the “most expensive dining experience in the world.” It’s one only two worthy diners will have the chance to experience at a date that Mashable reports, has yet to be specified, though the site references an August press conference that will ostensibly precede it. The companies will select the chosen duo, and what unfolds over the course of the eight-hour affair may actually make the $2 million price tag something of a bargain. A 45-minute helicopter ride over Singapore kicks things off, at which point the pair is escorted via a Rolls Royce to a private luxury cruise, reports Forbes. They are ultimately transported to Ce La Vi, which offers 360-degree views of the city from its perch atop the Marina Bay Sands Hotel.

(P2) The diners will be surrounded with 10,000 roses and dine with diamond-studded chopsticks engraved with their names, partaking in an 18-course meal that includes the world’s most expensive caviar, not just salmon but “Air-Flown Alaska Wild Salmon,” slow-cooked pigeon, and world-class wines that have been aged as long as 55 years. The furniture will be custom-made to their liking, and the whole shebang culminates with the cognac-infused presentation of the Jane Seymour ring at the stroke of midnight, a 2.08-carat Fancy Vivid Blue diamond set in 18-karat rose gold-plated platinum and valued at $2 million. And, oh yes, there will be fireworks

WORDS: 253

SOURCE: http://www.newser.com/story/228330/single-dinner-at-singapore-restaurant-costs-2m.html

VOCABULARY: absurdity, worthy, ostensibly, perch, partaking, shebang, culminates

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.

  1. Briefly, summarize the content of the article in your own words.
  2. Why do you think the restaurants is doing this extravagant dinner for two?
  3. Would you like to partake in this dinner? Why or why not?
  4. Which part of the event do you like? Why?

READING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS:

  1. What is the partners’ statement for the event?
  2. How long will the event be?
  3. From the rooftop of the restaurant, there are unobstructed views of Singapore. (T or F)
  4. Where is the caviar coming from?
  5. What is the estimated worth of the ring?

EXPRESSIONS or PHRASES:

What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • what is being billed (P1)
  • price tag (P1)
  • kicks things off (P1)
  • aged as long as 55 years (P2)

Cambly Practice Button

Image source: Cê La Vi

This Russian City Is Called the ‘Graveyard of the Earth’

[Culture ★★★]

1363

(P1) On the face of it, the living is good in Ozersk, Russia. The 100,000 people living in the city tucked in the Ural Mountains have always had plenty of food, private apartments, well-regarded schools, and good healthcare, even when the rest of the country lived in poverty. However, there are a few downsides for locals, the Guardian reports: “Their water is contaminated, their mushrooms and berries are poisoned, and their children may be sick.” Ozersk, or City 40 as it was first called, is where the Soviet Union’s nuclear weapons program was born. In the 70 years since the city was secretly built around the Mayak nuclear plant, its residents have been victims of nuclear accidents; waste from the nuclear plant is dumped into local lakes and rivers.

(P2) “The rate of cancer is enormous and their kids are born with cancer,” Samira Goetschel, who made the documentary City 40, told Vice in May. “They die from cancer. But they take it as part of life.” So why do the denizens of Ozersk remain in a city called the “graveyard of the Earth”? At first, they had no choice. Ozersk is a closed city, and for its first several year’s residents could neither leave nor communicate with the outside world. Now, residents may obtain an exit visa on certain days, but other Russians and any foreigners aren’t allowed in without approval. “You know, it’s double barbed-wire fences, it’s heavily guarded,” says Goetschel, who managed to gain access. Residents today have the choice to leave and never return, per the Guardian, but “few do because it would mean losing the privileges of being a resident of this closed city.”

*click on city 40 in the article to watch a youtube video about the city*

WORDS: 277

SOURCE: http://www.newser.com/story/228464/this-russian-city-is-called-the-graveyard-of-the-earth.html

VOCABULARY: tucked, downsides, enormous, denizens, barb-wire, privileges

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.

  1. Briefly, summarize the content of the article in your own words.
  2. If you were a resident of this closed city, would you want to continue living there? Why or why not?
  3. Should the city be relocated away from the nuclear plant and waste? Why or why not?
  4. If you had the opportunity, would you visit this city? Why or why not?

READING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS:

  1. How many residents live in Ozersk?
  2. Where in Russia is the closed city located?
  3. What’s wrong with the berries and mushrooms?
  4. The city was built with the public’s knowledge. (T or F)
  5. The people of Ozersk have to stay. (T or F)

EXPRESSIONS or PHRASES:

What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • on the face of it (P1)
  • dumped into local lakes and rivers (P1)
  • The rate of cancer (P2)
  • closed city (P2)

Cambly Practice Button

Image source: Photograph: DIG Films https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2016/jul/20/graveyard-earth-inside-city-40-ozersk-russia-deadly-secret-nuclear

Retiring policewoman donates 100 million won

[People ★★★]

160721_p05_retiring

(P1) Retiring policewoman Park Soon-ja has joined the “Honor Society” for donating 100 million won ($87,000) to a local welfare center in Changwon, South Gyeongsang Province. The honor is bestowed upon those whose donations surpass 100 million won by the Community Chest of Korea, the largest nonprofit welfare institution in Korea.

(P2) The 61-year old outgoing superintendent said she owes a debt of gratitude to society.
“For nearly 40 years while serving as a police officer, I have received many honors from the country,” said Park. “As I leave the force I feel strongly that it’s time for me to help the needy neighborhoods where I have served.”

(P3) Park served as a police officer for 37 years. She first joined the Masan Jungbu Police Station as a constable in 1979, one of the few female police officers at the time.

(P4) Having served various posts including the 112 emergency control center and the female and juvenile divisions, she has spent most of her career dealing with people’s requests.

(P5) Last month, Park officially retired from her post at the Changwon Seobu Police Station.

(P6) While serving as a police officer, she regularly visited local senior welfare centers to perform various volunteer efforts such as bathing those with serious illnesses and washing their clothes.

(P7) “It was not an easy decision to donate her severance pay,” said the head manager of the beneficiary local welfare community. “The donation will be used to help needy people in the community.”

(P8) Park is the 80th Honor Society member in South Gyeongsang Province.

WORDS: 250

SOURCE: http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/people/2016/07/178_209952.html

VOCABULARY: welfare center, bestowed, outgoing, constable, posts, severance pay

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.

  1. Briefly, summarize the content of the article in your own words.
  2. Would you consider donating your severance pay to charity? Why or why not?
  3. Why do people donate money to charity?
  4. Besides money, how else can people donate?

READING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS:

  1. Who did she give the money to?
  2. What was the title of her last position?
  3. In which year did she start her career?
  4. It was an uncomplicated decision to donate her severance money. (T or F)
  5. Which organization is she a member of now?

EXPRESSIONS or PHRASES:

What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • she owes a debt of gratitude to society (P2)
  • as I leave the force (P2)
  • dealing with people’s requests (P4)
  • volunteer efforts (P6)
  • needy people (P7)

Cambly Practice Button

Image source: by “unknown” http://img.koreatimes.co.kr/upload/newsV2/images/160721_p05_retiring.jpg

33% Dubai school kids overweight or obese

[Health ★★★]

image

(P1) Dubai Health Authority (DHA) held a smart clinic to raise awareness about childhood obesity and its related health problems.

(P2) Obesity is a risk factor for a number of chronic diseases and experts at the smart clinic focused on the link between childhood obesity and obesity in adulthood.

(P3) According to a report by the Dubai Health Authority’s Schools and Educational Institutions Unit, 33 percent of school children from kindergarten to Grade 12 across 176 private schools are either overweight or obese. Of these 14 to 16 percent are obese.

(P4) Dr. Hamed Hussein, family and community medicine specialist in schools and educational institutions health unit at DHA, said, “This statistic reveals the magnitude of the problem. This report is for the academic year 2014-2015, and once we received this report with the details of the children who suffer from obesity, we sent reports to parents highlighting the level of obesity their child suffers from, and we offered them three interventional options.”

(P5) He added that the feedback the unit received from parents has been very positive. “We are working with the municipality and all schools already have a list of banned foods and foods which should not be provided in school canteens. This has been in place for quite some time, however, the challenge is how to sustain a healthy eating pattern outside school hours. That’s where the role of parents becomes vital and it is not only limited to ensuring their kids eat healthier, but also includes ensuring limited exposure to television and video games so that they can lead active lifestyles.”

WORDS: 261

SOURCE: http://www.emirates247.com/news/emirates/33-dubai-school-kids-overweight-or-obese-2016-07-22-1.636487

VOCABULARY: obesity, chronic, magnitude, interventional, canteens, vital

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.

  1. Briefly, summarize the content of the article in your own words.
  2. Is child obesity problem in your country? Why or why not?
  3. Why do you think child obesity is a concern?
  4. Should schools offer more physical activities for all students? Why or why not?

READING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS:

  1. What does the abbreviation DHA stand for?
  2. What percentage of children in the report are said to have excessive body fat?
  3. Parents with obese child receive a letter from the school. (T or F)
  4. Schools have a file of prohibited foods. (T or F)
  5. Besides eating healthier, what else must parents make sure their children don’t overdo?

EXPRESSIONS or PHRASES:

What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • to raise awareness (P1)
  • a risk factor (P2)
  • highlighting the level of obesity (P4)
  • lead active lifestyles (P5)

Cambly Practice Button

Image source: by “unknown” http://cache.emirates247.com/polopoly_fs/1.505497.1452533067!/image/image.jpg

A five-star​ hotel to be built near Havana’s Intl. Airport

[Travel ★★★]

flightscuba

(P1) The construction of a five-star hotel near the Jose Marti International Airport in Havana stands out among the new business proposals included in the portfolio of foreign investment of the Ministry of Tourism (Mintur).

(P2) This project responds to the growing demand for accommodation in the Cuban capital, increasingly popular among vacationers from around the world, and to the increase of flights to Cuba.

(P3) Coming mainly from the United States, France, Italy, Mexico, Spain, the United Kingdom and Germany, one million 685,381 visitors arrived at the Jose Marti International Airport in 2015, representing an increase of 21 percent compared to the previous year.

(P4) Due to the growing interest in Cuba as a tourist destination, some airlines strengthen their presence, like the German Air Berlin, which incorporated since May two weekly flights between Düsseldorf and the city of Havana, for a total of five operations each month during the summer.

(P5) Recently the U.S. Department of Transportation approved the requests of six local airlines to operate direct regular flights to Havana before the end of the year, even though the citizens of that nation cannot travel to Cuba as vacationers because of the restrictions of the embargo.

WORDS: 195

SOURCE: http://www.cubaheadlines.com/2016-07-13-p13-a-five-star-hotel-to-be-built-near-havana%E2%80%99s-intl-airport.html

VOCABULARY: portfolio, accommodation, vacationers, strengthen, presence, embargo

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.

  1. Briefly, summarize the content of the article in your own words.
  2. Would you like to travel to Cuba? Why or why not?
  3. Have you ever stayed in a 5-star hotel? If yes, describe your experience. If no, would you like to and why?
  4. Do you think traveling to Cuba will continue to grow? Why or why not?

READING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS:

  1. Where will the accommodation be built?
  2. How many people went to Cuba in 2015?
  3. Which German airline was mentioned in the article?
  4. Which organization in the USA approved flights to Cuba?
  5. What government order does the USA have with Cuba?

EXPRESSIONS or PHRASES:

What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • stands out (P1)
  • growing demand (P2)
  • coming mainly from (P3)
  • due to the growing interest (P4)

Cambly Practice Button

Image source: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images http://www.theverge.com/2016/2/16/11018004/us-cuba-first-commerical-flights-50-years

Baby bird and boxer dog

[Animals ★★]

stream_img

(P1) After a baby bird fell into a garden from her nest, she formed a surprising friendship with a dog. The dog did not harm the bird but took care of her.

(P2) The dog’s owner made a new home for the bird in an indoor tree, but the owner found that the dog and the bird preferred to stay together.

(P3) The owner began filming them and their activities and then put the videos on the Internet. You can see the dog and bird playing hide-and-seek or lying together. The videos are very popular, as people have already watched them thousands of times.

WORDS: 101

SOURCE: http://www.newsinlevels.com/products/baby-bird-and-boxer-dog-level-2/

VOCABULARY: fell, nest, preferred, hide-and-seek, lying

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.

  1. Briefly, summarize the content of the article in your own words.
  2. Do children play hide-and-seek in your country? Why or why not?
  3. Do you like dogs? Why or why not?
  4. Do you think it’s odd the two animals formed a friendly relationship? Why or why not?
  5. Will you go watch the videos on the internet? Why or why not?

READING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS:

  1. What’s the breed of the dog?
  2. What did the bird fall out of?
  3. The animals didn’t want to be together. (T of F)
  4. What 2 things do the animals like to do together?
  5. How many times has the video been watched?

EXPRESSIONS or PHRASES:

What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • surprising friendship (P1)
  • took care of her (P1)
  • indoor tree (P2)
  • thousands of times (P3)

Cambly Practice Button

Image source: by “unknown” http://swns.com/news/tiny-little-bird-being-raised-by-surrogate-father-a-giant-boxer-dog-74186/