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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.
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dateline: 28 November 2019

NB! From January 2020 Listen to News will change to Listen & Learn.

Artist Makes Sculpture Out of Keys From Destroyed Homes

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

  • devastated: ruined or destroyed
  • art therapist: someone who helps people use art to improve their mental health
  • community: a group of people who live in the same area or have common interests
  • phoenix: a bird from ancient myths that dies and is reborn from ashes
  • recognition: gratitude, appreciation
  • award: to give something as a prize

Artist Makes Sculpture Out of Keys From Destroyed Homes

Last year, the town of Paradise, California was devastated by an wildfire. The fire wiped out over 8,000 of the town’s homes. Since then, art therapist Jessie Mercer has been the keys to these destroyed buildings to create a sculpture that would be meaningful to former residents of Paradise. Mercer received in the mail containing keys to homes, schools, churches, shops, and businesses that burned down in 2018. The sculpture is an 800-pound phoenix, made of over 14,000 of these keys. The phoenix was to a community support centre for of the fire. In recognition of her work for the community, Mercer was awarded a key to the town.

Comprehension Questions

1. Jessie Mercer started collecting keys after

Correct! Wrong!

Jessie Mercer started collecting keys after a wildfire burned down many homes in Paradise.

2. The sculpture is made of

Correct! Wrong!

The sculpture is made of 14,000 keys.

3. After it was built, Mercer donated the phoenix to

Correct! Wrong!

After it was built, Mercer donated the phoenix to a community support centre

Discussion Question: Jessie Mercer created this art piece to help people heal. Why do you think people are able to benefit from art therapy?

Artist Makes Sculpture Out of Keys From Destroyed Homes

Last year, the town of Paradise, California was devastated by an enormous wildfire. The fire wiped out over 8,000 of the town’s homes. Since then, art therapist Jessie Mercer has been collecting the keys to these destroyed buildings to create a sculpture that would be meaningful to former residents of Paradise. Mercer received packages in the mail containing keys to homes, schools, churches, shops, and businesses that burned down in 2018. The sculpture is an 800-pound phoenix, made of over 14,000 of these keys. The phoenix was donated to a community support centre for survivors of the fire. In recognition of her work for the community, Mercer was awarded a key to the town.

Written 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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