photo Tara Benwell Listen to News with Tara Benwell - Instructions:
1. Preview the vocabulary and read the gapfill text.
2. Play the news report and try to fill in the blanks.
3. Answer the comprehension questions by writing full sentences.
4. Use the discussion question to write an essay or discuss the story with other students.
5. Click "show Answers" to see the full text.
6. Pretend to be a news anchor by reading each story out loud.

dateline: 05 July 2011

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Thailand Elects First Female Prime Minister

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

  • minimum wage: the least amount of money a worker can legally earn per hour
  • tablet: a small, flat, touch screen computer
  • reconcile: bring back together
  • clone: an exact copy of someone or something
  • oust: to take down
  • coup: an illegal take down of a government

Thailand Elects First Female Prime Minister

Yingluck Shinawatra, a 44-year-old executive, and the sister of previous leader Thaksin Shinawatra, was as Thailand’s first female Prime Minister. As the leader of the Pheu Thai party, she made many election promises, including the minimum wage, building a high speed railroad system, and providing all school children with a tablet computer. While some complain that she doesn’t have enough in politics, others see it as a chance to reconcile the divided country. Her brother, who previously called his sister his “clone,” stated that her inexperience could be an advantage. Yingluck’s brother was ousted during a 2006 coup, and now lives in exile in .

Comprehension Questions

  1. Who is Yingluck Shinawatra’s brother?
  2. What promises did the Pheu Thai party make during their election campaign?
  3. What complaints do some people have about this female politician?

Discussion Question: In addition to being Thaksin’s sister, some people say that Ms Yingluck’s popularity was due to how photogenic she is. Would appearance, age, or gender help sway your vote for a leader?

show Answers

Written and recorded by Tara Benwell for EnglishClub
Tara Benwell is a Canadian freelance writer and editor who specializes in materials and articles for the ELT industry.
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