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Dateline: 1 April 2009

Story #1

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #1: German Student Kills 15 People
A German killed 15 people before taking his own life on March 11th in an unexpected rampage that began at his former high school. 17 year-old, Tim Kretschmer, was dressed as he moved about the school shooting mainly female students and teachers. After the school massacre the teen fled the scene and shot two people outside a psychiatric clinic. He then hijacked a car and forced the driver to help him escape the manhunt, which involved over 700 police officers and four . Though the driver managed to escape, the teen killed a and a man buying a car before he shot himself in a dead end street.

Comprehension Questions: Story #1

  1. How old was the shooter?
  2. What happened after the killer left the school?
  3. How did the killer die?
Discussion Question:
Is there security in high schools in your country? What can be done to prevent this type of rage in students?

Story #2

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #2: President Obama Gives Science the Green Light
In March, US President Barack Obama his promise to overturn Bush's legislation that prevented federal funding of embryonic stem-cell . Obama's ruling pleased many scientists who believe that stem cell research will result in finding cures for diseases such as Parkinson's disease. religious and anti-abortion groups in the US disagree with Obama's plan to separate science and politics, saying that research can be conducted without destroying human embryos. Obama his action, saying that decisions must be "based on facts, not ideology" and that America must lead the world to important technological breakthroughs.

Comprehension Questions: Story #2

  1. What did Bush's legislation prevent?
  2. According to the report, who disagrees with this decision?
  3. Why does Obama think this new legislation is important?
Discussion Question: Do you believe that stem-cell research is the key to finding cures to major diseases? Why or why not?

Story #3

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #3: Baby Abandoned During Flight
A 29-year-old Samoan woman was charged with abandoning her baby on a Pacific Blue flight this March. Shortly after landing in Auckland, a cleaner found the baby covered in blood in the washroom container. The woman, who had flown to New Zealand to work as a kiwi picker, had already left the plane, but had been spotted looking and confused while searching for a missing . Prior to being charged the mother and baby were reunited and sent to a hospital together. The incident surprised flight crew and passengers, since women over pregnant are not usually permitted to fly.

Comprehension Questions: Story #3

  1. Where was the mother heading to and from?
  2. Where was the baby found?
  3. Why were people surprised that this could happen?
Discussion Question: This mother's reasons for abandoning her child are unknown. However, it is not uncommon for women in some cultures to abandon a newborn conceived out of wedlock. Is there a cultural stigma surrounding unwed mothers in your country?

Story #4

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #4: Terrorists Storm Pakistani City of Lahore
Two separate terrorist took place in the Pakistani city of Lahore this March. The first ambush occurred on March 10th as police were escorting Sri Lanka's team into the city's stadium for a match. Sri Lanka was invited to the tournament after India's team pulled out based on security . At least six policemen were killed while seven cricketers and the coach on the bus were injured. On March 30th, a second attack took place at a Lahore police training academy. Pakistani police declared victory following the standoff that resulted in the deaths of eight cadets and the killing or capture of all seven militants.

Comprehension Questions: Story #4

  1. Why was March such a bad month for the city of Lahore?
  2. Which team was targeted by militants?
  3. Where did the second attack take place?
Discussion Question: The terrorists in the second attack dressed in police uniforms, making it difficult for Pakistani police to respond. What strategies do you think police use in this style of attack?

ANSWER CHECK

Story #1

Story #1: German Student Kills 15 People
A German teen killed 15 people before taking his own life on March 11th in an unexpected rampage that began at his former high school. 17 year-old, Tim Kretschmer, was dressed all in black as he moved about the school shooting mainly female students and teachers. After the school massacre the teen fled the scene and shot two people outside a psychiatric clinic. He then hijacked a car and forced the driver to help him escape the massive manhunt, which involved over 700 police officers and four helicopters. Though the driver managed to escape, the teen killed a salesman and a man buying a car before he shot himself in a dead end street.

Comprehension Answers: Story #1

  1. The killer was 17 years old.
  2. The teen shot two people outside of a psychiatric clinic.
  3. The teen killed himself in a dead end during a massive manhunt.

Story #2

Story #2: President Obama gives Science the Green Light
In March, US President Barack Obama fulfilled his promise to overturn Bush's legislation that prevented federal funding of embryonic stem-cell research. Obama's ruling pleased many scientists who believe that stem cell research will result in finding cures for diseases such as Parkinson's disease. Numerous religious and anti-abortion groups in the US disagree with Obama's plan to separate science and politics, saying that research can be conducted without destroying human embryos. Obama defended his action, saying that scientific decisions must be "based on facts, not ideology" and that America must lead the world to important technological breakthroughs.

Comprehension Answers: Story #2

  1. Bush's legislation prevented federal funding of stem-cell research.
  2. Some religious and anti-abortion groups disagree with Obama's decision.
  3. Obama thinks that the federal government must help fund stem-cell research in order to lead the world in scientific and technological discoveries.

Story #3

Story #3: Baby Abandoned During Flight
A 29-year-old Samoan woman was charged with abandoning her newborn baby on a Pacific Blue flight this March. Shortly after landing in Auckland, a cleaner found the baby covered in blood in the washroom garbage container. The woman, who had flown to New Zealand to work as a kiwi picker, had already left the plane, but had been spotted looking pale and confused while searching for a missing passport. Prior to being charged the mother and baby were reunited and sent to a hospital together. The incident surprised flight crew and passengers, since women over 36 weeks pregnant are not usually permitted to fly.

Comprehension Answers: Story #3

  1. The mother was heading to New Zealand from Samoa.
  2. A cleaner found the newborn in a garbage bin in the plane's washroom.
  3. Women over 36 weeks pregnant are not permitted to fly, so it was surprising that this woman was even on board.

Story #4

Story #4: Terrorists Storm Pakistani City of Lahore
Two separate terrorist attacks took place in the Pakistani city of Lahore this March. The first ambush occurred on March 10th as police were escorting Sri Lanka's cricket team into the city's stadium for a match. Sri Lanka was invited to the tournament after India's team pulled out based on security concerns. At least six policemen were killed while seven cricketers and the assistant coach on the bus were injured. On March 30th, a second attack took place at a Lahore police training academy. Pakistani police declared victory following the eight hour standoff that resulted in the deaths of eight cadets and the killing or capture of all seven militants.

Comprehension Answers: Story #4

  1. March was a terrible month for Lahore because two separate terrorist attacks took place.
  2. Sri Lanka's cricket team and its police escorts were attacked.
  3. The second incident took place at a police training school in Lahore.