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Teachers' Room > Lesson Library > Browse Library

Modern History

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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Fleeing Yemen
The rocket that tore through a minivan outside the Aden Grand Hotel last week killing nine men, women and children was a clear message that it was time to leave. Yemen's civil war had come too close for comfort. (Discussion, sequencing)
Advanced
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Star Wars Arms
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a robotic arm for amputees that is named for the "Star Wars" character Luke Skywalker and can perform multiple, simultaneous movements, a huge advance over the metal hook currently in use. (Robotic arms and hands, amputees, collocation, sensory tests.)
Advanced
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"I Have a Dream"
Clarence Jones was sitting 50 feet behind his boss, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., in 1963 when King delivered the speech that would forever change the course of race relations in the United States. Now, 50 years later, Jones recalls how the words "I have a dream," were not written in the text that King prepared and began to read that day. (Martin Luther King, famous speeches, "I have a dream" speech, punctuation.)
Advanced
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Olympic Opening Ceremony
London's Olympic Stadium will be [turned] into a British meadow complete with fields, cows, ducks, a horse-drawn plough and a game of village cricket for the opening ceremony of this year's summer Games. (Olympic Games, opening ceremony, England.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Adolescent CEOs
Venture capitalists are funding more chief executives under age 21 than ever before. Josh Buckley, chief executive of an online gaming start-up, is looking forward to the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, particularly for the parties and the schmoozing with industry A-listers. There's one problem: Buckley may be turned away from many of the parties because he is not old enough to drink. (Young entrepreneurs, work, high-tech companies, venture capitalists, 'will' + infinitive.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Replacing the Carrot with a Stick
While workers mostly like to see an employer offer smoking cessation classes and weight loss programs, too few are signing up or showing signs of improvement. So now more employers are trying a different strategy - they're replacing the carrot with a stick and raising costs for workers who can't seem to lower their cholesterol or tackle obesity. They're also coming down hard on smokers. (Health care and compulsory wellness programs, business, pair crossword, opinion essays and discussion.)
Advanced
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Soccer Originals
Read about the world's oldest football rules and the world's oldest soccer ball. How have rules changed in the last 150 years? What does the world's oldest soccer ball look like? (Soccer, active / passive, history.)
Intermediate
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Change of Energy Source?
The lakeside town of Port Hope, Ontario, encompasses both the promise and the dark side of the nuclear industry. The town is home to the world's longest running facility to process nuclear fuel, a massive white eyesore that towers over the sailboats bobbing in its tranquil harbor. (Nuclear energy, the environment, business, nuclear accidents, like and unlike.)
Advanced
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Permits Required
In the land where Jesus lived, Christians say their dwindling numbers are turning churches from places of worship into museums. And when Christian pilgrims come from all over the world to visit the places of Christ's birth, death and resurrection, they find them divided by a concrete wall. As a boy growing up in Jerusalem, Yacoub Dahdal saw Christians from all over the Middle East converge on the city at Easter time to walk in the footsteps of Jesus.
Advanced
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Tips and Hints for Visitors
Commonwealth Games organizers have compiled an extensive list of hints and tips for visitors to the October event, the guide providing a valuable insight into social mores as well as helping to avoid embarrassing situations. (Commonwealth Games, sport, rules for behavior, New Delhi.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Max Vocab Worksheet: The United Nations
Here are a couple of exercises on words related to the United Nations and the Security Council. This worksheet goes well with the Upper Intermediate lesson "The Security Council".
Upper-Intermediate
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Bushfires
Bushfires in Australia, science, nature, Australia, listening for understanding, reading and understanding, answering true and false questions, fire safety.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Shaking hands between the trenches
The last known surviving allied veteran of the Christmas Truce that saw German and British soldiers shake hands between the trenches in World War One died Monday at 109, his parish priest said...Troops in the trenches swapped cigarettes, uniform buttons and addresses and even played football in one of the most extraordinary episodes of the war. (War, Christmas, peace, friendship, memories, predicting, true, false or not given, comprehension, thinking carefully.)
Intermediate
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World's Largest Lesson 2005
All Level Lesson - WLL 2005.
Governments are doing far too little to remove unexploded bombs and landmines. Landmine Action said not only were children being killed and maimed as they unwittingly played with the brightly colored unexploded bomblets from cluster bombs, but land and antitank mines were slowing postwar aid delivery and development. (Landmines, world's largest lesson, postwar development.)
Intermediate
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The Humble Potato
Max tells us about the history of the words to do with potatoes.
Intermediate
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Scientists Go Back to the Future
British scientists hope to exhume the body of a young woman who died in the 1918 influenza pandemic to examine the virus that claimed up to 40 million lives worldwide. (Flu, pandemics, true/ false/not mentioned, verbs that take the infinitive or -ing forms, discussion.)
Upper-Intermediate
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AK-47
Famous! Mikhail Kalashnikov, inventor of the AK-47 rifle, said he was proud of developing the rifle but wishes he'd designed something to help people instead - like a lawnmower... or... (Weaponry, inventions, discussion, word order, reading for detail, the structure "I wish I had..." crossword.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Happy Birthday!
Fifty came with a televised bash, celebrity friends and a black-tie dinner, but Oprah Winfrey is having a low-key 60th birthday at home in California. Bill Clinton, turning 60, hated being so old. (Birthays, listening comprehension, talking about birthday celebrations, scanning, writing questions, jigsaw reading, Grammar - the present continuous to describe an action in progress.)
Upper-Intermediate
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The Shape of Things to Come
A shiny white pod that has begun road tests may well be the taxi of the future. The pod, known as ULTra -- Urban Light Transport -- could make driver-free transport a reality and not just the stuff of futuristic fantasy. (Public transport, transport problems, technology, the future, summarizing, definite and indefinite articles.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Children's Toys
Tamagotchi are back, more complex than ever, with an infrared communication function allowing them to visit each other and even reproduce! This lesson also looks and toys and toy issues, including the 2001 reaction of toy sellers to 9/11. (Christmas, birthdays, war toys, toys, present simple and present continous tenses, the present continuous used to talk about a current trend.)
Upper-Intermediate
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A Micro $4 Billion
Muhammad Yunus, 63, is the founder of Grameen Bank, which has made more than $4 billion in tiny loans to poor Bangladeshis, providing a lifeline for millions and a banking model that has been copied in more than 100 nations from the United States to Uganda. (Microfinance, microcredit, Bangladesh, problem solving, reading and predicting, general knowledge, comprehension, multiple choice, jigsaw reading, identifying present and past tenses, pair crossword.)
Intermediate
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Olympic Mini-Lesson: Olympic Discussions
Get a discussion on the Olympics going with this Intermediate and Above Olympic Mini-Lesson!
Intermediate
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Inventions
This warmer produces lively discussion and gives students practice using the past passive.
Intermediate
HTML Format
Is Ecotourism Too Popular?
Ecotourism is taking its toll on wildlife and may be endangering the survival of the very animals people are flocking to see, according to researchers. (Ecotourism and its impact on wildlife, animal quiz, talking about animals, predicting, completing a table, check your understanding, true, false or not given, the present continuous, jigsaw reading, crossword.)
Intermediate
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Global Warming Threat
Global warming poses a greater long-term threat to humanity than terrorism because it could force hundreds of millions from their homes and trigger an economic catastrophe, Canadian Environment Minister David Anderson said. (Global warming, terrorism, threats, ranking, understanding the main idea, scanning, comprehension, understanding points of view, direct and indirect speech, giving opinions, game - indirect speech, writing a poem using prompts.)
Upper-Intermediate
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All Gadgets In One
Dennis Nally used to travel with a cell phone, an electronic organizer and a laptop. These days, the chairman of PricewaterhouseCoopers carries a tiny handheld device that does it all. (Multipurpose gadgets, technology, consumers, understanding the headline, text organization, finding information, completing a table, interview, crossword - adjectives, adjectives - -ed and -ing, Gadgets game - ordering instructions and writing instructions for using a machine.)
Advanced
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Management Survey
Women are included in the senior management of nearly 90 percent of Russian companies, the highest rate among major countries, a survey showed. (Businesswomen, gender equality, business, understanding factual information, surveys, categorizing words, adjectives, brainstorming, understanding the main idea, organizing information, completing a table, adverbs - nearly, almost and exactly, discussion, vocabulary extension game - adjective antonyms.)
Pre-Intermediate
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The Great Shrinking Wall
The Great Wall of China is shrinking as tourism and development take their toll on one of the world's most famous monuments. (Famous structures, the Great Wall of China, seven wonders of the world, matching information and pictures, completing a table, constructing questions, finding evidence, summarizing, listening for specific information, infinitive of purpose, discussion.)
Intermediate
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Against The Law!
The poor, oil-rich nation of Venezuela is considering decriminalizing the theft of food and medicine in cases where a thief is motivated by extreme hunger or need. (Justice, poverty, decriminalization, different crimes, ranking and discussion, understanding the main ideas, giving an opinion, scanning, modal verbs, prefixes - in-, de-, non-, crossword, Vocabulary Bingo Game.)
Intermediate
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Swaziland Crisis
Desperate HIV-positive Swazis are lining up in droves to try the latest "miracle AIDS cures", falling victim to patchy medical regulation in a country with one of the world's highest HIV infection rates. (HIV / AIDS, bogus 'wonder drugs', con artists, Swaziland, developing countries, brainstorming and problem solving, Find Your Other Half Game, placing headlines, matching information, scanning, differentiating fact from opinion, true or false, running dictation, discussion.)
Advanced
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A Very Long Life
The oldest woman in Albania -- and perhaps in the world -- has died at the age of 123. She was buried next to her husband whom she hated because she was forced to marry him when she was 14 years old. (Old age, men and women, talking about different periods in history, understanding the headline, scanning, comprehension, guessing unfamiliar words, numbers, word find.)
Elementary
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A Brand New Fish!
A little tropical fish that glows fluorescent red will be the first genetically-engineered pet. (Genetic engineering, tropical fish, pets, skimming, reading gap fill, complete the table, matching information, true, false or not given, prepositions, expressing opinions, role plays.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Next: Borrowing the Car
They waste hours in front of the TV and get their parents to spend money on designer clothes and haircuts. And they're not even three years old! A new survey in Britain says toddlers are increasingly leading a lifestyle once associated only with moody adolescents. (Children and parents, discussion, skimming, complete a table of information, true, false or not given, fractions, percentages, bar graphs, group brainstorming, pair crossword, like as a preposition.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Can We Share?
A U.S. doctor leading a highly unusual campaign to protest his exclusion from this year's Nobel Prize for medicine appealed to the two winners to insist he share the prestigious award. (Nobel prize, brainstorming, scanning, complete the table, explain the headline, comprehension, thinking carefully, error recognition, matching sentences, web research.)
Advanced
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SARS Vaccine
Tests of an anti-SARS vaccine may start in January 2004, but that would be too late to protect the public if the killer virus returns this winter, the World Health Organization said. (SARS, vaccines, understanding the main idea, comprehension, writing questions, summary, health words, peer dictation, crossword, too + adverb, adjective or much / many.)
Pre-Intermediate
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The Mummy's Curse
King Tutankhamen's infamous "curse of the mummy's tomb," supposed to have killed off many of those involved in the opening of the pharaoh's tomb 80 years ago was a myth, Australian researchers say. (Ancient Egypt, curses, mummies, archeology, brainstorming, matching sentence halves, scanning, comprehension, true, false or not given, complete the statements, past participles, writing an e-mail, role play.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Night of a Thousand Dinners
At the Night of a Thousand Dinners people around the world share a meal to raise money for landmine clearance. This lesson looks at this event, some of the problems that landmines have caused in Afghanistan, and the dangers of landmines. (Landmine organizations, international issues, effect of landmine explosions on ordinary people, especially women, Afghanistan, reading and predicting, making sentences, jigsaw reading, comprehension, sharing information, check your understanding.)
Elementary
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Night of a Thousand Dinners
At the Night of a Thousand Dinners people around the world share a meal to raise money for landmine clearance. This lesson looks at this event, some of the problems that landmines have caused in Afghanistan, and the dangers of landmines. (Landmine organizations, international issues, effect of landmine explosions on ordinary people, especially women, Afghanistan, reading and predicting, making sentences, jigsaw reading, comprehension, sharing information, check your understanding.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Night of a Thousand Dinners
At the Night of a Thousand Dinners people around the world share a meal to raise money for landmine clearance. This lesson looks at this event, some of the problems that landmines have caused in Afghanistan, and the dangers of landmines. (Landmine organizations, international issues, effect of landmine explosions on ordinary people, especially women, Afghanistan, reading and predicting, making sentences, jigsaw reading, comprehension, sharing information, check your understanding.)
Intermediate
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Night of a Thousand Dinners
At the Night of a Thousand Dinners people around the world share a meal to raise money for landmine clearance. This lesson looks at this event, some of the problems that landmines have caused in Afghanistan, and the dangers of landmines. (Landmine organizations, international issues, effect of landmine explosions on ordinary people, especially women, Afghanistan, reading and predicting, making sentences, jigsaw reading, comprehension, sharing information, check your understanding.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Night of a Thousand Dinners
At the Night of a Thousand Dinners people around the world share a meal to raise money for landmine clearance. This lesson looks at this event, some of the problems that landmines have caused in Afghanistan, and the dangers of landmines. (Landmine organizations, international issues, effect of landmine explosions on ordinary people, especially women, Afghanistan, reading and predicting, making sentences, jigsaw reading, comprehension, sharing information, check your understanding.)
Advanced
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Can't See The Trees
US cities have lost more than 20 percent of their trees in the past 10 years. This is due mainly to urban sprawl and highway construction. (Importance of trees, loss of trees in cities, understanding the main idea, crossword, interpreting a flowchart and transferring information, reading in detail, present simple, present perfect and past simple tenses, brainstorming.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Lights Out!
U.S. supermarkets and restaurants had to throw away mountains of spoiled vegetables, meats and dairy products, while others were counting on backup generators to minimize losses from the largest power outage in North America's history. (Power failure and the effects of a blackout on supermarkets and restaurants, predicting from the headline, sequencing, comprehension, true, false or not given, word forms, peer dictation.)
Intermediate
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Everest Anniversary
As he marked the 50th anniversary of reaching the roof of the world, a now gray-haired and stooped Sir Edmund Hillary didn't care if he really was the first to the top of Mount Everest. (Everest, Mallory, Hillary and Norgay, mountain climbing, anniversary of historic climb, matching information, sequencing, scrambled questions, complete the sentences, comparing pictures, true, false or not given, crossword.)
Intermediate
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Plan To Fight Future SARS
Asia-Pacific health ministers have agreed to common health screening procedures for the deadly SARS virus and to share information to combat the disease as China promised openness to stop future outbreaks. (SARS, controlling infectious diseases, trade, brainstorming, predicting from the headline, making questions, completing and performing an interview.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Atwood's 'Oryx and Crake'
Celebrated Canadian author Margaret Atwood has released a novel about a deadly virus that wipes out civilization. 'Oryx and Crake' is bound to touch a few nerves in her home country and around a world still plagued with the fear of SARS. (Science Fiction, the future, SARS, text organization, true, false or not given, choose the best answer, sequencing, discussion, words with similar spellings, acronyms, find someone who game - books and reading.) Warning: Adult themes.
Advanced
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Tallest Building
The world's tallest building in Dubai is 828 meters (2,717 ft) high. (Burj Khalifa, Taipei 101, world's tallest buildings, discussion, comprehension, reading for specific information, reference words, identifying nouns, comparative and superlative structures, shouting dictation, information gap game.)
Elementary
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A PETA Protest
The leader of a prominent animal rights group said she had drawn up a will directing that her flesh be barbecued and her skin used to make leather products in protest at people's ill-treatment of animals. (Animal rights, guessing the meanings of words in context, scanning, true or false, summarizing, discussion, dialogue build, reported speech.) Please Note: The material contained in today's article may be disturbing to some students.
Intermediate
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Chinese Students Return Home
China began letting more of its students out into the world in the late 1970s. But it is only recently that foreign-trained Chinese have begun to return, lured by a booming economy and more opportunities in the growing number of private companies and foreign firms that now have offices in China. (China, students, employment, scanning, comprehension, gap fill, true, false or not given, the suffix 'ee', role play, essay topic.)
Advanced
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