English Exercises > readings exercises

´And Europe´s Worst Linguists Are…´ (Author-Bouabdellah)

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  Technicum Si-Tarek Of Relizane

 First Year Students

 Scientific Streams 2005/2006

 Practice: 'And Europe's Worst Linguists Are…'

SECTION ONE: Comprehension.
Read the following dialogue then do the activities below.
'And Europe's Worst Linguists Are…'
Tuesday February 20 BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The British are the European Union's (EU) worst linguists while those of Luxembourg are the best, according to an EU poll published Monday.
Almost two-thirds (2/3) of British know no language apart from their mother tongue, the highest figure recorded in the 15 EU countries. 
That compares to just 2.2 percent in Luxembourg, 12.3 percent of Danes and an EU average of 47.3 percent of people who speak no other language but their own, the poll of 16,000 EU citizens said.
But British travelers to Europe need not worry.
English is the most common second language in the EU, spoken by 41 percent of the EU's citizens. In Denmark, Sweden and the Netherlands, at least 78 percent of people speak English as a second language.
Although 47 percent of EU citizens know only their mother tongue, there is wide agreement that speaking a foreign language is a good thing.
Across the EU, 72 percent of those polled believe foreign language skills are useful, 71 percent of them said everyone should know one foreign language and 69 percent said everyone should speak English.
The reasons given why people do not learn languages were lack of time, lack of motivation and the cost of language lessons.
Reuters Limited Text © 2001.
ACTIVITY 01: What or who do the underlined words in the text refer to?

1. … while those of … =>
2. … who speak no … => 
3. …but their own…   => 
4. … their mother …   => 
5. … of them said...     =>  

ACTIVITY 02: Find in the text words or expressions that are close in meaning to the following.
1. Very bad §1  =
2. Language §2 =
3. Survey §3     =
4. Voyagers §4 = 
5. Think §7       =

ACTIVITY 03: Answer the following questions according to the text.
1. How many people in Luxembourg speak only one language?
2. How many people in the EU speak English?
3. Are language lessons expensive? Justify.
   because it is said in the text that
SECTION TWO: Mastery Of Language.
ACTIVITY 01: Complete sentence “B” so that it has the same meaning as sentence “A”.
1-A - Robert is a journalist and so is Peter.
1-B -  journalists.
2-A - John: I learn languages because it's very useful.
2-B - John told .
ACTIVITY 02: Order the words to make a correct sentence.
     In / inform / is / main / my / newspapers / of / opinion, / people. / purpose / the / to
ACTIVITY 03: Find in the text 4 regular verbs in the past and classify them in the table below according to the pronunciation of their final 'ed'. (Two verbs each column.)
ACTIVITY 04: Find in the text all the plural nouns finishing in 's' or 'es' and classify them in the table below according to the pronunciation of the 's' or 'es'. (According to the number in each column)
ACTIVITY 05: Classify the following words in the table below according to their stressed syllable.     
Atomic – Powerful Expressing
1st  Syllable stressed
2nd   Syllable stressed
Fill in the following CV giving your own information. Then, using the information in the CV write an application letter to apply for a summer temporary job in a beach summer camp.
NB: This is to be done at home as home work.
Foreign Language (s):