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Teachers' Room > Lesson Library > Browse Library

Animals

Fence Them Out
Wildlife rangers in Australia’s outback have started building a 185 km (115 miles) electrified enclosure to protect native animals from pests such as feral cats, which are threatening some species with extinction. (Conservation, pests, endangered animals.)
Intermediate
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Allergies
Do pets in fact help kids to overcome allergies? Exposing babies to puppies and other furry pets might help them accumulate two types of bacteria in their gut that are associated with a lower risk of allergies and obesity (Health, pets, asthma, allergies)
Upper-Intermediate
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I Dare You .....
An Australian teenager who was bitten by a crocodile when he jumped into a river in northern Queensland on a dare is now recovering in hospital and looking forward to a date with the British backpacker he was trying to impress.(Truth and dares, sequencing, Australia and crocodiles, find someone who game, discussion on how to impress other people.)
Intermediate
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Groundhog Day
Punxsutawney Phil, a famed U.S. groundhog with an even more famous shadow, came out of his burrow on Thursday and predicted a long North American winter. (Groundhog Day, interview with a woodchuck, first conditional.)
Intermediate  Lesson Updated: 13 February 2017
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Loving Animals
Find out about a chicken and a tiny horse that do good work with abused children and senior citizens. (Animals, medical matters, health, infinitives of purpose)
Upper-Intermediate
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Full Metal Spiders
Scientists knew that fish often carry mercury but they now know that spiders can transfer mercury to foods that people eat.
Elementary
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Stop Acting the Goat or You're Fired!
The city of Salem fired a herd of goats from their job in a park. The city wanted the 75 goats to eat invasive plants. (Animals, invasive plants, the environment, present perfect simple and past simple).
Elementary
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Rent a Chicken
A Pennsylvania husband and wife rent chickens to customers. They rent chickens to about 200 customers in 12 US states and also Ontario and Prince Edward Island in Canada. (Vocabulary, farming, where food comes from)
Elementary
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Tish the Fish
Read about goldfish invasions, goldfish rescues and one fish that despite spending his life going around in circles, he still achieved international fame, unlike some of us. (Goldfish, world records, word order)
Pre-Intermediate
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Demining Animals
Eight dogs have finished their difficult training. They are part of Thailand's battle to get rid of land-mines. Find out about two other animals that are used for "demining" (Landmine clearance, sorting information, 'adjective + for + object pattern'.)
Elementary
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Coyotes Moving In
Police caught a young female coyote outside a cafe in lower Manhattan, the latest in a series of coyote sightings in New York City. (Coyotes, wild animals living in cities, sharing information.)
Pre-Intermediate
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It's Raining Cats and Tourists...
An army of feral cats rules a remote island in southern Japan. There are six cats for every person in the village. (Cats, cat control, collective nouns.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Teeth or Web?
Spider silk may lose its claim as the strongest known natural material after researchers found that limpet teeth have more mettle. (Natural materials and strength, minerals, similes, modal verbs - may, might, could.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Teamwork
If you want to witness effective teamwork, you might be as apt to find it among the fishy denizens of a coral reef as in the office where you work. Scientists have found the coral trout recruits moray eels to help hunt for prey, with both ending up well fed. Aquarium experiments showed that the trout are choosy in picking the best eel partner for the job. (Animal behavior, coral trout and moray eels, participles as compound adjectives.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Easter Bunny?
The Easter Bunny may not always be an Easter icon in Australia and New Zealand, as conservationists remove to replace it with the Bilby or the Kiwi. (Easter, conservation, the rabbit as a pest.)
Pre-Intermediate  Lesson Updated: 15 April 2014
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Bee Ware
Australian scientists are gluing tiny sensors onto thousands of honey bees to track their movements in a trial aimed at halting the spread of diseases that have wiped out populations in the northern hemisphere. (Bees, pollination, scientific experiments, because and because of, process descriptions.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Social Climbers?
When most people go into crocodile territory, they keep a lookout for crocodiles in the water or on the land. But now researchers say people should look up. Researchers say crocodiles can climb trees. (Crocodiles, ability of animals for different tasks, using 'can/can't' to describe ability to do something, being good at something.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Kangaroos to China
Once considered pet food, kangaroo meat could soon be sold to China as a luxury product, to encourage Chinese consumers to do something few Australians will - eat it. (Skimming, scanning, matching information, jigsaw reading, internet research)
Intermediate
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"Bug Out"
The Department of Health in New York has lots of bed bugs. The new $316 million building in Queens has bed bugs, the Health Department said. (Staying healthy, insects, expressions of quantity.)
Elementary
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Bugs, Bites and Parasites
The tourist who got more than she bargained for on an overseas holiday and a cheap natural therapy for arthritis has been recommended by scientists - hirudo medicinalis, or more simply, leeches. (Arthritis and treatments, leeches, maggots, could for possibility, ability and requesting,reading for detail, guessing words by context, 'affect' and 'effect', medical vocabulary, dialog and essay writing.)
Upper-Intermediate
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You're Kidding Me!
First, there were the maid cafes and then there were cat cafes for cat lovers to play with cats while they sipped a cup of coffee. Now, there is a goat cafe. The cafe has a pair of friendly goats for customers to pet, play with and even take for walks through Tokyo's concrete jungle. (Cafes, animals, present continuous, planning a dream cafe)
Pre-Intermediate
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Animal Apps
Humans aren't the only species on the planet with a penchant for electronic gadgets. Zookeepers across the United States and Canada are discovering that apes also get excited about apps. 12 zoos have been incorporating iPads into the enrichment time allotted for orangutans, the giant furry red primates native to Indonesia and Malaysia. (Orangutans, animals, using technology and apps, participles as adjectives.)
Intermediate
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Greek Mosquitos
Just when it seems things couldn't get any worse for Greece, the exhausted and indebted country has a new threat to deal with: mosquito-borne diseases. Species of the blood-sucking insects that can carry exotic-sounding tropical infections like malaria, West Nile Virus, chikungunya and dengue fever are enjoying the extra bit of warmth climate change is bringing to parts of southern Europe. (Malaria, Greece, health system, disease and prevention control).
Advanced
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Nasty Parasites
Parasites look set to become more virulent because of climate change, according to a study showing that frogs suffer more infections from a fungus when exposed to unexpected swings in temperatures. (Parasites, climate change, frogs, reported quesitons.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Elephant Escapes
An elephant trainer has taken two elephants back to the circus after they walked along a busy Copenhagen street and an elephant escaped from New Zealand's Auckland Zoo after she dropped a log on an electrified fence and pushed through a gate. (Elephants, zoos - benefits and disadvantages, sequencing, a / an / the, writing a headline, pair crossword, present perfect.)
Elementary
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Petsercise
The world's biggest food group Nestle has launched an online program inviting pet owners to team up with their furry friends to lose weight and an dog food advertisement especially produced for dogs, not their owners. (Business, obesity, pet owners, pet food, cats and dogs, "to" for purpose, proper nouns, role play and advertisements.)
Intermediate
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A Day in the Life of a .....!
Reuters interviewed the Duck Master at the Peabody Hotel in Little Rock. The Duck Master is in charge of the hotel's flock of ducks. This tradition began in 1940. The Duck Master talks about his day. (Jobs, animals, hotels, third person singular verbs, time, answering and asking questions.)
Elementary
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Wild Sleepover?
For wild animal lovers not content with watching tigers and gorillas during the day, a growing number of zoos are offering a more thrilling after-dark experience - overnight stays. Visitors are learning what happens when the gates slam shut, the sun goes down and the moon rises over some of America's most well-known zoos. (Sleepovers, zoos, writing questions using the present simple tense, present perfect simple, role play using present simple and present perfect simple, doing a crossword.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Seeing-eye Sheep and Goats
Michelle Feldstein was ready to provide special accommodation for the blind horse she recently added to the flightless ducks, clawless cats and homeless llamas at her animal shelter in Montana. But nothing could make her ready for the 40-legged, seeing-eye [group] that came with a blind 15-year-old horse called Sissy. (Animals and friendship, amazing stories, animal shelters, fact and opinion adjectives.
Pre-Intermediate
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Lucky Pets
Americans may be trying to spend less money, but when it comes to their pets, they're spending more than ever. Between trips to the vet, specialty foods, treats and toys, pet insurance and even parties, Americans are happy to open up their wallets to keep Rex, Rover or even the house lizard healthy and happy. (Pets, costs, economy, benefits of having a pet.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Peach the Police Dog
Meet Japan's newest police dog -- all 3 kg (6.6 lb) of her. In what is a first for Japan and perhaps the world, a long-haired Chihuahua named "Momo" -- "Peach" -- passed exams to become a police dog in the western Japanese prefecture of Nara. (Dogs, police, guessing game.)
Pre-Intermediate
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An Expensive Sandwich
A bear crashed a car after opening the door of a car and getting stuck. The bear smelled a peanut butter sandwich in the back seat and opened the door of the car. The bear climbed in and got stuck. (Bears, dangerous animals, bizarre events, conducting an interview, irregular past tense verbs, word search puzzle.)
Elementary
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Protecting the Animals
Efforts to save tigers and kiwi birds. This lesson looks at conservation efforts in two different places. (Environment, animals, poaching, pests, New Zealand, Sundarban Forest, Bangladesh, India, present perfect simple).
Pre-Intermediate
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Spider Eyes
Eye doctors at a hospital in England have discovered why a man's eye was sore - there were spider hairs in it. Doctors in Australia have removed a spider from a man's stomach after the spider burrowed in and lived there for 3 days. (Spiders, dangerous animals, pets, sequencing, reference words.)
Elementary
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Welcome To Clone Farm
To the untrained eye, Pollard Farms looks much like any other cattle ranch. Similar looking cows huddled in similar looking pens. But some of the cattle here don't just resemble each other. They are literally identical - clear down to their genes. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the sale of food from clones and their offspring, stating the products are indistinguishable from their non-clone counterparts. (Cloning, degrees of certainty, second conditional.)
Advanced
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Camels
This lesson was suggested by Raewyn Diggerman of Queensland, Australia who won our 'Most Wanted Resource Competition' in which contestants suggested an idea for a resource they wanted written.
Upper-Intermediate
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Ice Pops for Zoo Animals
A zoo in Rome is feeding its animals a treat of frozen fruits every day because of the very hot weather. (Weather, animals and zoos, present perfect simple, talking about the weather, describing a zoo.)
Elementary
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Running from the Pigs
A man, who was running away from the police, asked police for help when he ran into a family of wild boar. Two prisoners rescued a prison officer when a boar attacked him at a prison. (Bizarre stories, crime and rescues, infinitives of purpose.)
Elementary
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Tiger Kissing
A medical student on a visit to a zoo saved the life of a baby tiger by giving it the kiss of life. (Animals, amazing stories, actions, comprehension, making predictions, sequencing, present perfect simple, talking about past experiences.)
Elementary
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Fancy Pooch
Super Alsatian? Elvis the poodle? Dog owners are dressing up their dogs for costume parties. (Fancy dress, shopping habits, dogs, will for future facts and deciding something at the moment of speaking.)
Elementary
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Hungry Pandas
Giant pandas living in the wild in the misty mountains of southwest China are facing a possible food shortage as bamboo plants, their staple diet, near the end of their lifespan, state media said on Monday. (Pandas, conservation, brainstorming, listening gap fill, sequencing, conducting an interview, verbs of perception with active participles or bare infinitives).
Upper-Intermediate
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Smart Squirrels
A Finnish squirrel goes to a Finnish grocery shop at least twice a day to steal "Kinder Surprise" chocolate-shelled eggs and in Britain a squirrel helped police find a box of stolen crockery by encouraging them to follow it and then leading them to a tree. (Squirrels, animal behavior, crime, vocabulary, comprehension, discussion and prepositions.)
Elementary
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Watching is Catching on
Armed with binoculars it takes to the bush to spot and identify winged creatures but this is not the common bird watcher -- it's the butterfly watcher, a relatively rare but fast growing species. (Butterflies and butterfly watching, conservation, hobbies, making predictions, comprehension, finding grammatical errors.)
Advanced
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Rats Rats Rats
A video shown on television showed rats scampering across a New York City restaurant floor. With nearly four million rats born every day experts have warned that the rodents could spread more disease through towns and cities in developing nations. (Rats, sanitation, restaurants and the spread of disease, pest control, vocabulary work, understanding the main idea, listening gap fill, prediction, true or false, shouting dictation game, pair crossword, although and because.)
Pre-Intermediate  Lesson Updated: 5 April 2007
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Redbacks and Snakes on the Move
Snakes are going into urban areas in Australia because they are looking for water and redback spiders were going inside. (Snakes, spiders, Australia, comprehension, prediction, reading for understanding, answering true or false questions, countable and uncountable nouns, much, many, some, any, a few, a little, few, less)
Elementary
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"Not Mad" Cows Created
U.S. and Japanese scientists said on Sunday that they had used genetic engineering to produce cattle that resist mad cow disease.(Genetic engineering, Mad Cow Disease, BSE, CJD, scientific research, the passive.)
Intermediate
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Disappearing Fish
The world's fish and seafood populations will collapse by 2048 if current trends in habitat destruction and overfishing continue, resulting in less food for humans. In Japan fish is a cherished delicacy. Two articles that look at overfishing and the popularity of fish in Japan. (Depletion of fish stocks, conservation, eating seafood, survey, scanning, true or false, prepositions, brainstorming, first conditional.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Gone to the Dogs
Yappy hours for dogs, dog perfumes and dog parties. Cottages with lounge beds, color TV and VCRs for dogs on holiday. Find out about the booming pets' products industry: in 2006 about $7 billion will be spent on dogs. (Dogs, dog merchandise and luxury holidays, verb patterns: verbs that take an object and a to-infinitive, discussion, selling a product.)
Upper-Intermediate
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The Fat Jab
A vaccine that slows down a key hunger hormone kept rats from gaining weight, even when they overate. (Obesity, dieting, comprehension, matching words and meanings, completing a diagram, completing a food pyramid, quantifiers and uncountable nouns.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Gangs on the Loose
Unruly gangs are raiding the expensive homes that line the spectacular coast of South Africa's Cape Peninsula, clearing out pantries, emptying fridges and defecating on the designer furnishings. It's baboon versus human in a string of wealthy oceanfront communities 30 minutes from the trendy center of Cape Town. (Baboons, wildlife, discussion, true or false, punctuation exercise, vocabulary work.)
Advanced
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