Week112

[Culture ★] Cat Festival in Tokyo

[Travel ★] Amsterdam in London

[Lifestyle ★★] The West Edmonton Mall

[World News ★★] Philippines to split from the USA

[Culture ★★] Husband and wife become saints

[World News ★★★] ObamaCare Premiums Are Going to Soar Next Year

[Sports ★★★] Curling

[Science ★★★] Dogs dream about their owners, says scientist

[Environment ★★★★] How Air Pollution Impacts Childhood Mental Health

[Lifestyle ★★★★] How to Make Your Hair Super Shiny When You’re Air-Drying

Cat Festival in Tokyo

[Culture ★]

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(P1) This news is from Tokyo. A cat festival happens there. People dress up as cats. They paint their faces, wear masks, and put on cat ears. They parade through the streets.

(P2) A Japanese designer organizes this festival. The festival celebrates three things: Halloween, autumn, and cats. The festival is a hit. People look very good.

(P3) The Japanese love cats. They have cat cafes and Hello Kitty. People love homeless cats, too.

WORDS: 71

SOURCE: http://www.newsinlevels.com/products/cat-festival-in-tokyo-level-1/

VOCABULARY: festival, paint, masks, parade, celebrates, homeless

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 you like cats? Why or why not?
  3. Does your country celebrate Halloween?
  4. Are there festivals in your country? If yes, tell me about one?

READING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS:

  1. Which city is the festival in?
  2. What do people wear?
  3. Who organized the festival?
  4. What are the 3 things people celebrate?
  5. Which animal do the Japanese love?

EXPRESSIONS or PHRASES:

What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • happens there (P1)
  • cat ears (P1)
  • three things (P2)
  • is a hit (P2)

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Image source: By Miyuki Meinaka, CC-BY-SA3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Maneki_Cat_Festival_in_Ise,_2013.jpg

Amsterdam in London

[Travel ★]

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(P1) EasyJet is an airline. It makes a special tour. You can visit Holland without leaving London.

(P2) You meet real people and places on the tour. There are many surprises on the way, too.

(P3) EasyJet thinks that it is good to travel. The tour shows this to people.

WORDS: 47

SOURCE: http://www.newsinlevels.com/products/amsterdam-in-london-level-1/

VOCABULARY: airline, special, real, surprises, thinks

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 you like to travel? Why or why not?
  3. Do you think it is good to travel? Why or why not?
  4. Tell me about a tour you went on?

READING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS:

  1. EasyJet is a company. (T or F)
  2. Where can you visit?
  3. Which 2 things do you meet on the tour?
  4. There is not a lot of surprises on the trip. (T or F)
  5. What does EasyJet want to show people?

EXPRESSIONS or PHRASES:

What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • visit Holland (P1)
  • on the tour (P2)
  • on the way (P2)
  • good to travel (P3)

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Image source: By Arpingstone, public domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Low.cost.carrier.easyjet.arp.jpg

The West Edmonton Mall

[Lifestyle ★★]

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(P1) The West Edmonton Mall is the largest shopping mall in North America and the fifth largest in the world. It is located in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. It opened in 1981 and has gotten bigger as more shopping areas were constructed. It was completed in 1998. In total, there are now more than 800 stores in the mall. It is so big there are 58 different entrances. Of course, because it is one of the world’s largest malls, it has a very large car park. There are enough parking spaces for more than 20,000 cars.

(P2) People sometimes call the West Edmonton Mall the West Ed Mall. There are so many things people can do in the West Ed Mall. It has over 110 different places to eat. There are two Baskin Robbins 31 ice cream stores, two KFCs, and three McDonalds. Surprisingly, there is only one Starbucks coffee shop. If you don’t want to go shopping, you can go for a swim. The mall also has the world’s largest indoor wave pool. The mall also has an indoor amusement park. It is the second-largest indoor amusement park in the world and has 24 rides and attractions. There is always something to do at the West Edmonton Mall!

WORDS: 206

SOURCE: http://dreamreader.net/lesson/the-west-edmonton-mall-2/

VOCABULARY: largest, bigger, entrances, indoor, rides

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 you like to go to the mall? Why or why not?
  3. Describe a shopping mall in your country.
  4. Would you like to go to this mall? Why or why not?

READING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS:

  1. This mall is the largest in the world. (T or F)
  2. In which year did the shopping mall open to the public?
  3. How many doors are can people use to enter the mall?
  4. What’s another name given to the mall?
  5. The amusement park is outside. (T or F)

EXPRESSIONS or PHRASES:

What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • fifth largest (P1)
  • has gotten bigger (P1)
  • car park (P1)
  • wave pool (P2)

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Image source: by Dylan Kereluk from White Rock, Canada https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Shops_in_WEM.jpg

Husband and wife become saints

[Culture ★★]

08_pope_francis_korea_haemi_castle_19

(P1) A husband and wife became saints on the same day for the first time in history. They were canonized by the pope at a synod in the Vatican.

(P2) The couple lived in France in the 19th century. They were the parents of five daughters. All of the daughters later became nuns. The most respected one is Saint Therese of Lisieux.

(P3) The synod is focused on how the church can be a better minister to modern families.

WORDS: 76

SOURCE: http://www.newsinlevels.com/products/husband-and-wife-become-saints-level-2/?utm_source=old

VOCABULARY: saints, canonized, synod, nuns, minister

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. Have you ever visited France? If no, do you want to?
  3. Do you know where the Vatican is located?
  4. What are some problems modern families face?

READING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS:

  1. What are the names of the people that got canonized?
  2. Where did the couple live?
  3. Only four out of the five daughters were nuns. (T or F)
  4. What’s the name of the most admired nun?
  5. What is the focus of the Synod?

EXPRESSIONS or PHRASES:

What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • first time in history (P1)
  • in the Vatican (P1)
  • were the parents (P2)
  • modern families (P3)

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Image source: “Pope Francis Korea Haemi Castle 19” by Korea.net / Korean Culture and Information Service (Photographer name). Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Pope_Francis_Korea_Haemi_Castle_19.jpg

Philippines to split from the USA

[World News ★★]

the-philippines

(P1) The Philippines president Rodrigo Duterte said his country will move away from the USA and work with China. Mr. Duterte might also get closer to Russia. He said: “Maybe I will talk to Putin and tell him that there are three of us against the world: China, the Philippines, and Russia.” Duterte said he would end military and economic agreements with the USA. He told the USA: “Your stay in my country was for your own benefit. So it is time to say goodbye.”

(P2) Things could now change in Asia. China will be stronger and the USA will be weaker. The USA may have to leave its military bases in the Philippines. This would be a big problem for the USA. A US spokesman said it could change its whole approach to the region. The US and the Philippines were close partners for 65 years. The Russian newspaper ‘Russia Today’ wrote about the change. It said China has just turned an old rival into a friend.

WORDS: 166

SOURCE: http://www.breakingnewsenglish.com/1610/161022-philippines-1.html

VOCABULARY: economic, benefit, military bases, approach, rival

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 you think it’s smart for the Philipines to move away from the USA? Why or why not?
  3. Have you ever been to the Philipines? If not, do you want to go there? Why or why not?
  4. Do you think the citizens of the Philipines agree with Duterte? Why or why not?

READING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS:

  1. Who is the leader of the Philippines?
  2. Which countries does Duterte say will be against the rest of the world?
  3. The USA is definitely being told to get their military out. (T or F)
  4. How long were the USA and the Philipines together?
  5. Who said China and the Philipines are now friends?

EXPRESSIONS or PHRASES:

What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • will move away (P1)
  • against the world (P1)
  • your own benefit (P1)
  • could now change (P2)

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Image source: by Credit:pawel.gaul iStock http://www.istockphoto.com/th/photo/map-and-flag-of-philippines-gm185300608-19375693

ObamaCare Premiums Are Going to Soar Next Year

[World News ★★★]

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(P1) Premiums will go up sharply next year under President Obama’s health care law, and many consumers will be down to just one insurer, the administration confirmed Monday. That’s sure to stoke another ObamaCare controversy days before a presidential election, the AP reports. Before taxpayer-provided subsidies, premiums for a midlevel benchmark plan will increase an average of 25% across the 39 states served by the federally run online market, according to a report from the Department of Health and Human Services. Some states will see much bigger jumps, others less.

(P2) Major national carriers such as UnitedHealth Group, Humana, and Aetna scaled back their roles, meaning about one in five consumers will only have plans from a single insurer to pick from. Republicans pounced on the numbers as a warning that insurance markets created by the 2010 health overhaul are teetering toward a “death spiral.” “It’s over for ObamaCare,” Donald Trump proclaimed at a campaign rally Monday evening in Tampa, Fla., promising that his own plan would deliver “great health care at a fraction of the cost.” Administration officials, however, stress that subsidies provided under the law, which are designed to rise alongside premiums, will protect most customers.

WORDS: 196

SOURCE: http://www.newser.com/story/233047/obamacare-premiums-to-leap-an-average-25.html

VOCABULARY: stoke, subsidies, benchmark, carriers, pounced, proclaimed

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. Describe your country’s healthcare system?
  3. Do you think healthcare should be free for everyone? Why or why not?
  4. What is your opinion about the ObamaCare health program in the USA?

READING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS:

  1. Many consumers will only have one choice for a healthcare insurer. (T or F)
  2. By what percent will mid-range health care plans increase?
  3. Every State in the USA will see the same increase in premiums. (T or F)
  4. Which insurers will decrease their roles in the ObamaCare program?
  5. Who said ObamaCare is finished?

EXPRESSIONS or PHRASES:

What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • down to just one insurer (P1)
  • federally run online market (P1)
  • scaled back (P2)
  • death spiral (P2)

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Image source: by Pablo Martinez Monsivais http://www.newser.com/story/233047/obamacare-premiums-to-leap-an-average-25.html