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Upper-Intermediate Instant Lesson

Flying Mosquitoes

Pre-Reading Activities

A: Predicting
Part One
Make a list of all the facts you know about mosquitoes using the following questions to help you. Next draw a table that has two columns. Put the facts that you are certain about in one column and the facts you are uncertain of in the other. Keep this table, as you will use it later in the lesson.

  1. Where do mosquitoes live?
  2. What do mosquitoes eat?
  3. Which countries do mosquitoes live in?
  4. Why do mosquitoes live in these countries?
  5. Which countries do not have mosquitoes?
  6. What problems do mosquitoes cause?
  7. How can you get rid of mosquitoes?

Part Two
Write a headline for this excerpt from a February 2016 article.

__________________

Thu Feb 4, (Reuters) Planes landing in the United Kingdom from countries affected by the Zika virus should be sprayed inside with insecticide, the UK government announced on Friday, according to the Guardian newspaper.

It is a precautionary measure to combat the mosquito-borne Zika virus linked to thousands of birth defects in Brazil, the Guardian said.
(Continued.../)
Article © 2016 Thomson Reuters Limited. Lesson © 2016 www.english-to-go.com

Reading Activities

A: Reading and Understanding
Below is an excerpt from an article on the Zika Virus. The questions (a. - g) from the article have been removed and their order has been mixed up. Read the article and match each question with the right answer. Write a. - g. in the correct gaps in the article.

a. How do you treat Zika infection?
b. What are the symptoms of Zika infection?
c. What is the history of the Zika virus?
d. How dangerous is it?
e. How widespread is the outbreak?
f. How can Zika be contained?
g. How do people become infected?

Why The Zika Virus is Causing Alarm

Wed Feb 17, (Reuters) Global health officials have said that the Zika virus, which has been linked to severe birth defects in thousands of babies in Brazil, is rapidly spreading in the Americas and could infect up to 4 million people.

The following are some questions and answers about the virus and the current outbreak.

1. ____
The virus is transmitted to people through the bite of infected female mosquitoes, primarily the Aedes aegypti mosquito, the same type that spreads dengue, chikungunya and yellow fever. The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) said Aedes mosquitoes are found in all countries in the Americas except Canada and continental Chile, and the virus will likely reach all countries and territories of the region where Aedes mosquitoes are found.

2. ___
There is no treatment or vaccine available for Zika infection. Companies and scientists are racing to develop a safe and effective vaccine for Zika, but the World Health Organization said it would take at least 18 months to start large-scale clinical trials of potential preventative shots.

3. _____
The PAHO said there is no evidence that Zika can cause death, but some cases have been reported with more serious complications in patients with pre-existing medical conditions.

The virus has been linked to microcephaly, a condition in newborns marked by abnormally small heads and brains that have not developed properly. It also has been associated with Guillain-Barre syndrome, a rare disorder in which the body's immune system attacks part of the nervous system.

The suspected link between the Zika virus and the two conditions could be confirmed within weeks, the WHO said.

4.____
People who get Zika virus disease typically have a mild fever, skin rash, conjunctivitis, muscle and joint pain and fatigue that can last for two to seven days. But as many as 80 percent of people infected never develop symptoms. The symptoms are similar to those of dengue or chikungunya, which are transmitted by the same type of mosquito.

5. ____
Efforts to control the spread of the virus focus on eliminating mosquito breeding sites and taking precautions against mosquito bites such as using insect repellent and mosquito nets. U.S. and international health officials have advised pregnant women to avoid travel to Latin American and Caribbean countries where they may be exposed to Zika.

6. ___
Zika outbreaks have been reported in at least 40 countries or territories, according to the WHO. Brazil has been the nation most affected.

7. ____
The Zika virus is found in tropical locales with large mosquito populations. Outbreaks of Zika virus disease have been recorded in Africa, the Americas, Southern Asia and the Western Pacific. The virus was first identified in Uganda in 1947 in rhesus monkeys and was first identified in people in 1952 in Uganda and Tanzania, according to the WHO. (Continued.../)

Article © 2016 Thomson Reuters Limited. Lesson © 2016 www.english-to-go.com

 

B: Correct or Incorrect?
Look at the article again and say whether these sentences are correct (C) or incorrect (IC).
1. The Zika virus is found in all countries in North and South America.
2. It is unlikely that you can die from getting Zika virus.
3. Most people who have the virus won't realise that they have got it.
4. The Aedes aegypti mosquito can also transmit malaria.
5. Scientists think that the virus was first experienced by monkeys.


C: Understanding the Main Idea
Here is another article written in 2000 about malaria and airplanes. What is the main idea of the article?

  1. Mosquitoes are traveling to other countries on planes.
  2. Mosquitoes are dangerous because they carry malaria.
  3. Mosquitoes are carrying malaria to other countries.
  4. Mosquitoes are carrying malaria to other countries which do not have malaria.
  5. Mosquitoes are traveling on planes and are carrying malaria to countries that do not have malaria.
Jet-setting mosquitoes pose widespread malaria risk

NEW YORK Wednesday August 23 (Reuters Health) - Mosquitoes that hop airplanes flying out of malaria-stricken countries pose a risk to people in areas where the infection is rare, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

Between 1969 and 1999, there were 89 reported cases of "airport malaria"-infections transmitted in or nearby international airports. France had the most cases, with 26. Belgium had 17 cases and there were 14 in the UK. The US reported 4 instances of airport malaria. Dr. Norman G. Gratz and his colleagues report the statistics in the August issue of the Bulletin of the World Health Organization.

A potentially life-threatening disease transmitted by mosquitoes, malaria strikes between 300 million and 500 million people worldwide each year, according to WHO estimates. The disease is endemic in parts of Central and South America, Africa, Southeast Asia, the Middle East and the Indian subcontinent.

"Imported malaria" is particularly dangerous, according to Gratz's team, because doctors do not suspect the disease--malaria is marked by non-specific, flu-like symptoms. So patients may die before the diagnosis is made. The researchers note that malaria has been reintroduced in limited outbreaks in countries where it was once eradicated--including Germany, Italy, and the US. In most of these cases, an infected traveler has been to blame, but some outbreaks may have been caused by imported mosquitoes, according to the report.

A "serious consequence" of mosquitoes' plane hopping is that they may establish themselves in new countries, Gratz and his colleagues write. Tropical mosquitoes would, however, be unlikely to last in temperate climates.

WHO recommends that planes flying out of malaria-stricken areas be regularly sprayed with pesticide to cut the risk of importing infected mosquitoes.

Article © 2000 Reuters Limited. Lesson © 2016 www.english-to-go.com
 

D: Vocabulary
Part One
Work in pairs. One of you is Student A, the other Student B. Read the article again carefully to help with this vocabulary exercise.
Your teacher will give you a table. With your partner use the information that you have on both the tables and fill in the gaps with words or definitions.
The words shown in bold type on your table are from today's article. Your partner has the definitions for those words. Student A reads out the definition for one word and Student B looks for the word matching that definition on their table. Then swap roles. Remember to look at the article if you have difficulty matching a word and a definition.

 

E: True or False?
Decide which statements are true and which are false. Write 'T' or 'F' in the box.
1. "Airport malaria" infections can only be caught inside airports.
2.
Europe has the only cases of "airport malaria" infections.
3.
There are some parts of the world where malaria has been got rid of.
4.
Malaria can cause death and is carried by mosquitoes.
5.
"Imported malaria" can only be caused by infected people.
6.
Only countries that do not have malaria can get "imported malaria".
7.
Malaria has similar symptoms to the flu.
8.
Upon arrival all planes coming from a country that has malaria should always be sprayed with pesticide.
9.
Plane hopping mosquitoes may start breeding in new countries.
10.
Tropical mosquitoes could survive in temperate climates.

 

F: Reviewing Information
Return to Pre-Reading Activity A Part One and the list you made of facts. What changes to the list can you make after reading these articles?


G: Types of Texts
Work in pairs or small groups and decide what type of text the malaria text is by choosing one of the answers below. What are the reasons for your answer?

  1. An argument
  2. A report that gives information
  3. An explanation
  4. A narrative or story about an event
  5. A report that gives a problem and a solution
  6. A report that gives instructions

Post-Reading Activities
You may do one or more of these.

A: Language
Commas are used when writing lists. For example, the writer of the article uses commas in this sentence: "The disease is endemic in parts of Central and South America, Africa, Southeast Asia, the Middle East and the Indian subcontinent."

The comma can be left out if the items are separated by 'and' or 'or'.
Place commas in the following sentences.

  1. I bought one apple one pear oranges bananas and a lettuce.
  2. There were books food pencils blue paper red flowers and a computer on the table.
  3. Botswana Zambia Malawi Zimbabwe and Mozambique are all African countries.
  4. There could be a possibility of danger sickness injury or loss of life.

Now make up your own sentences using lists. Remember to put the commas in.

B: Word Search
Using all the words in the article that relate to health make up your own word search.

C: Research
Research which specific countries in the following regions have malaria: Central and South America, Africa, Southeast Asia, the Middle East and the Indian subcontinent. Compare the temperatures of these countries. What have you learnt from this activity?

 

D: Changing a Text
The type of text written depends on who is the reader. Choose one of the following activities. First identify what type of text you have to write i.e. an explanation etc.

a. You are a medical doctor who needs to present a short report of a couple of sentences to some other doctors using the information in paragraph two. What will you write?

b. You need to tell airport staff how to use the cans of pesticide. What will you write?

c. You need to describe the symptoms of malaria or Zika Virus to a friend. What will you write?


TEACHERS' NOTES AND ANSWER KEY

Pre-Reading Activities

A: Predicting Parts One - Notes
This activity helps students become aware of what knowledge they bring to a reading task before actually reading. It could be done as a large group activity with the teacher taking on the role of scribe or as a small group activity with each group making its own table. If done as a small group activity, each group could then report back their findings. This could lead to an interesting discussion in relation to how facts can be substantiated. Make sure students keep the lists so that they can refer back to them later in the lesson.

A: Predicting Part Two - Answer
Here is the original headline of the article.
UK to spray insecticide inside planes from Zika-affected regions

Reading Activities

A: Reading and Understanding - Sample Answers
1. c, 2. a, 3. d, 4. g, 5. f, 6. e, 7. c.

B: Correct or Incorrect - Answers
1. IC, 2. C, 3. C, 4. IC, 5. C.

C: Understaning the Main Idea - Notes
Students could time themselves to see how long it takes them to get the main idea of the article. It is important, however, that this activity is not done as a race.

A: Understanding the Main Idea - Answer
Sentence Number 5: "Mosquitoes are traveling on planes and are carrying malaria to countries which do not have malaria."

D: Vocabulary - Notes
This must be done in pairs. You will need to make copies of Table A and Table B. The students are required to reread the article slowly and then do the activity.
Make sure students understand what they have to do before they begin.

D: Vocabulary - (Text to be copied and given to students)

Table A

- Pose

- Transmit

*

*

- Medical reports of a particular illness

- Bring something into another country

*

- The result or effect of an action

*

*

Malaria

- Get rid of completely

- Mild weather

*  

*

- Possibly may happen

- Jet-setting

*

*

- To identify a disease by looking at the symptoms of the patient.

*

- A risk

- Endemic

*

Table B

- May possibly cause

*  

*

- Sickness caused by mosquitoes biting humans

- Cases

*

*

- Imported

Diagnosis

*

- A possibility of danger, sickness, injury or loss of something.

*

Eradicate

Temperate climate

*

*  

- Consequence

- To pass on

*

*

- Only found in a particular region or country

- Potential

*

*

- To frequently travel by plane around the world

D: Vocabulary - Part One Answers

Table A: (Answers shown in italics)

May possibly cause

Pose

Transmit

To pass on

Cases

Medical reports of a particular illness

 Bring something into another country

Imported

The result or effect of an action

Consequence

Sickness caused by mosquitoes biting humans

Malaria

Eradicate

Get rid of completely

Mild weather

Temperate climate

Potential

Possibly may happen

Jet-setting

To frequently travel the world by plane

Diagnose

To identify a disease by looking at the symptoms of the patient.

A possibility of danger, sickness, injury or loss of something

A risk

Endemic

Only found in a particular region or country

Table B (Answers shown in italics)

May possibly cause

Pose

Malaria

Sickness caused by mosquitoes biting humans

Cases

Medical reports of a particular illness

Bring something in to another country

Imported

Diagnosis

To identify a disease by looking at the symptoms of the patient.

risk

A possibility of danger, sickness, injury or loss of something.

Get rid of completely

Eradicate

Temperate climate

Mild weather

The result or effect of an action

Consequence

To pass on

Transmit

Endemic

Only found in a particular region or country

Potential

Possibly may happen

Jet-setting

To frequently travel by plane around the world

E: True or False? - Answers
1.False; 2.False; 3.True; 4.True; 5.False; 6.True; 7.True; 8.False; 9.True; 10.False.

F: Reviewing Information - Notes
Using the tables they made in Pre-Reading Activity A students discuss what changes to their table they would make after reading this article. Questions that are not answered in the article could be used to provide opportunities for further research.

G: Types of Texts - Notes
As it is useful for students to be able to identify what type of texts they read, this activity is based on genre analysis. You could discuss the basic structure of different texts.

F: Types of Texts - Answer
Answer: A report that gives a problem and a solution
It is a report that gives facts and statistics. The problem is that malaria-carrying mosquitoes are traveling by plane to countries that do not have malaria. Statistics demonstrate that there is a problem. The solution is to spray planes with pesticide before they leave malaria-stricken areas.

Post-Reading Activities

A: Language - Answers

  1. I bought one apple, one pear, oranges, bananas and a lettuce.
  2. There were books, food, pencils, blue paper, red flowers and a computer on the table.
  3. Botswana, Zambia, Malawi, Zimbabwe and Mozambique are all African countries.
  4. There could be a possibility of danger, sickness, injury or loss of life.

B: Word Search - Notes
Students write these words horizontally, vertically, diagonally, upside down, back to front. They then fill in the gaps between the words with letters from the alphabet. The aim is for another student to identify the hidden words.

C: Research - Notes
The purpose of this activity is for students to discover what tropical means in relation to temperatures. You may want them to fill in a world map or make a graph with the data they collect.

D: Changing a Text - Notes
The type of text written depends on who is the reader. This could be done individually with learners given a choice or as a paired activity. Responses could be shared with the class. Remind students to use the information in the article and to keep their responses short-no more than a quarter of a page.

D: Changing a Text - Answers
a. A report that gives information which includes a graph.
b. A report that gives a set of instructions.
c. An explanation.

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