Listen&Learn: The Library of Discarded Books

Pre-listening vocabulary

  • sanitation worker: a person whose job is to collect garbage
  • salvage: to save something before it is damaged, lost, or thrown away
  • discard: to get rid of an unwanted item
  • resident: someone who lives in a certain area
  • donate: to give something to a fund, charity, or other public cause
  • abandoned: deserted; left alone

Listening activity

Gapfill exercise

In 2017, a of sanitation workers in Ankara, Turkey began to collect books that had been thrown away. Their goal was to create a small supply of books for other to borrow from. The workers would salvage any discarded books they found while collecting garbage, in order to make sure that other people would get to read them. While this collection began as a supply for the sanitation department’s workers, the story of the discarded books was brought to the attention of the . Soon, residents of Ankara began donating their books to the sanitation department’s collection, instead of throwing them away. As the once-small book collection started to grow, the sanitation workers decided to open a public made up of unwanted books. Today, this library is located in an abandoned brick factory, where there are now chairs and tables so that people can sit and read. It contains thousands of different books, both and non-fiction. In fact, the library has become so successful that schools in Ankara now borrow books from it to use as learning materials.

Comprehension questions

1. The people who originally started collecting books were

Correct! Wrong!

The people who originally started collecting books were sanitation workers.

2. The collection began as

Correct! Wrong!

The collection began as a supply of books for the workers to borrow from.

3. The library is now located in

Correct! Wrong!

The library is now located in an abandoned factory.

Discussion/essay questions

  1. What is the meaning of the saying “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure”? How is this related to the article?

Transcript

In 2017, a group of sanitation workers in Ankara, Turkey began to collect books that had been thrown away. Their goal was to create a small supply of books for other employees to borrow from. The workers would salvage any discarded books they found while collecting garbage, in order to make sure that other people would get to read them. While this collection began as a supply for the sanitation department’s workers, the story of the discarded books was brought to the attention of the public. Soon, residents of Ankara began donating their books to the sanitation department’s collection, instead of throwing them away. As the once-small book collection started to grow, the sanitation workers decided to open a public library made up of unwanted books. Today, this library is located in an abandoned brick factory, where there are now chairs and tables so that people can sit and read. It contains thousands of different books, both fiction and non-fiction. In fact, the library has become so successful that schools in Ankara now borrow books from it to use as learning materials.

Written and recorded by Jaksyn Peacock for EnglishClub

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