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News quiz 2014

Ideas on how to use the quiz


Team quiz
Divide students into groups of 3-4 and give each group cut-up strips with the
questions (without numbers). Let Ss first go through the questions in groups,
then ask for feedback and award a point for each correct answer.
Later give out the answer sheet and ask Ss to match the questions with the
answers. A stapler might be handy too to staple the cut-up question strips to
the answer sheet. Ss find the answers to the questions they didn't know or
werent sure about.
Classroom management tip: This activity works better with
similar-ability students grouped together. Ask early finishers to
underline / highlight useful lexical chunks in the news quiz (see
Language Focus below) or come up with catchy titles for each
question (see Headlines below). OR give weaker groups fewer
questions.
Table quiz
The same activity can be done with the teacher as a quizmaster. Supply each
group with a numbered sheet for writing answers on (not provided here). The
questions can be divided into the following categories:
POLITICS - Questions 1, 8, 10, 12
SPORTS - Questions 2, 5, 7, 13, 16
SCIENCE & GLOBAL ISSUES - Questions 3, 4, 9, 15
MEDIA & ENTERTAINMENT Questions 6, 11, 14, 17
Classroom management tip: This activity would work better with
students divided into mixed-ability / heterogeneous groups.

Webquest
If you have access to the Internet in your classroom, instead of giving Ss the
answers, ask them to find information on the Internet or on their smartphones.
Each pair / group then shares with the class what they have found. This can
also be assigned as out-of-class work.
Suggested websites for lower level students / young learners:
CBBC (Children's BBC) News Round: www.bbc.co.uk/newsround
Our Little Earth: www.ourlittleearth.com
Simple English Wikipedia: http://simple.wikipedia.org
Developed by Leo Selivan
http://leoxicon.blogspot.com

Mini-presentations
Ask each student individually to choose one news story they are familiar with
and share with the rest of the class (or in their groups) what they know about
it. Give them about three minutes each. Ask Ss to find out more about the
topics they didn't know about and make another mini-presentation for the next
lesson.
Top 20
The quiz has 17 questions. Ask Ss what news story from 2014 they would add to
the list to make it 20.
Ranking
Ask Ss to rank the stories in order of importance to make a Top 10 Hottest
News of the year list. To turn it into a writing activity, you can use Tricider
with students writing arguments in support of a particular news item.
See this video tutorial: www.teachertrainingvideos.com/tricider
Headlines
After answering the questions, Ss in groups decide on a title for each news
story. They can then present their titles to other groups who should guess
which story it relates to.
Some possible titles/headlines are:
Humiliating defeat (Question 2)
Double whammy (Question 4)
Whats more dangerous: skiing or car racing (Question 5)
Heroic cat / Cat saves the day/ Mans best friend (Question 6)
Science fiction or science fact? (Question 9)
Tragic death of a comic actor (Question 11)
Make your own quiz
Ask Ss in groups to design similar quizzes based on the local news stories of
2014 using lexical chunks (see below) from the original quiz. NB. Make sure the
news stories from your country have not been included in the original quiz.

Developed by Leo Selivan


http://leoxicon.blogspot.com

Language focus: grammar


The Passive
Ask Ss to highlight the examples of the Passive constructions in the quiz.
Which of them can be changed into the active voice?
For example, was rushed to hospital is used rather than the active voice rush
(him) to hospital because it is clear from the context who did it, i.e. the agent
(doctors, ambulance) is obvious. Here are some examples from the quiz:
Advanced version:
was left in a coma
was sentenced to five years
was convicted of a crime
were taken hostage

Intermediate version:
was rushed to hospital
was sentenced to five years
was awarded an Oscar
were taken hostage

Language focus: lexis


The quiz contains a lot of collocations and other lexical chunks which are worth
pointing out. They can be written on the board or highlighted if you are using a
projector (and MS Word) or IWB. I've highlighted some below using the
following colours:
Collocations with Verbs
Adjective + Noun/Noun + Noun collocations
Other chunks
Lexical chunk dictation
Alternatively, if your students have all the questions in front of them, you can
"dictate" the chunks you want them to underline. For example,
1) Underline a combination of a verb and noun which means "take part in
voting" = went to the polls
2) Underline a chunk which means "continue despite problems" = went ahead as
planned
etc.
See my article Revisiting Texts on the TeachingEnglish website to get a better
idea about how it is done: http://tinyurl.com/revtexts
Note that some Verb + Noun collocations often consist of seemingly easy
combinations of already known words (e.g. take + control, make + headlines etc.)

Developed by Leo Selivan


http://leoxicon.blogspot.com

Clarifying meaning
Some items which you may have to pre-teach:
went to the polls

vote in an election

death toll

a count of how many people died (e.g. in a war,


accident)

toddler

a child who has just learned to walk

celestial body

an object in space (e.g. a planet, star, asteroid)

summary execution

When somebody is accused of a crime and killed


immediately without a trial

Exploring lexis
Some items that you can post-teach, i.e. spend time discussing and
elaborating on after the quiz:
Advanced version
inflict a defeat

What other things can be inflicted?


(damage,pain, suffering)

lengthy trial

Whats the difference between long and lengthy


(lengthy is too long)

imposed sanctions

Whats the opposite of impose sanctions?


(lift sanctions)

pay tribute to

Can you say pay respects to here?


(Possibly, but note that pay last respects usually
implies going to someones funeral.)

first tasted victory

What other nouns can be used instead of victory?


(taste glory / fame / defeat)

Developed by Leo Selivan


http://leoxicon.blogspot.com

Intermediate version
made headlines

What events made headlines in your country last


year?

caused outrage

Can you think of celebrities or politicians who


caused outrage by saying or doing something?

commit a crime

Find another example of commit in the quiz


(commit suicide)

raise (a few) eyebrows

What things can raise eyebrows?


(someones outfit or outrageous performance)

private ceremony

What does ceremony refer to here? (wedding)


What other ceremonies are there?
(graduation, awards ceremony e.g. Oscars)

Vocabulary expansion activity


Give your Ss a list of vocabulary items for self-study. Tell them to study them
at home using an online dictionary (http://dictionary.cambridge.org or
www.ldoceonline.com) and relate them to the news stories in the quiz. In
other words, they learn new vocab out of context (even though online
dictionaries provide pretty good contextualised examples) and then insert
them into the context.
List of items for advanced students
footage
atrocities
manslaughter
stake a claim
to annex
cutting edge

Cat rescuing a boy (Question 6)


ISIS (Q 10)
Oscar Pistorius (Q7)
The Crimea (Q 8)
The Crimea (Q 8)
as in on the cutting edge of science (Q9) or
cutting-edge technology Oscar Pistoriuss legs (Q7)

List of items for intermediate students


(Note that some of these appear in the advanced version)
vanish
injury
to be convicted of
peninsula
economic sanctions
brutal
eligible

Malaysia Airlines (Q 4)
Michael Schumacher (Q 5)
Oscar Pistorius (Q 7)
The Crimea (Q 8)
The Crimea (Q 8)
ISIS (Q 10)
as in eligible bachelor George Clooney (Q 14)
Developed by Leo Selivan
http://leoxicon.blogspot.com

News quiz 2014 - Advanced


1.

Citizens of which European country went to the polls in September 2014 for a
referendum on independence and voted against separation?

2.

Despite violent riots on the streets, the World Cup went ahead as planned last summer
in Brazil. The host nation, however, lost 7-1 in the semi-final. Which country inflicted a
humiliating defeat on Brazil?

3.

With the death toll exceeding 4,500, the Ebola virus continued to spread through West
Africa. In what country did the outbreak of the deadly virus start?

4.

It was a turbulent year for the airline industry. Which airline suffered two major
incidents within a matter of months, both involving the state-of-the art Boeing 777?

5.

Legendary Formula 1 driver Michael Schumacher was left in a coma after a serious head
injury in February 2014. What was he doing when he sustained the injury?

6.

One of the most viral videos of the year, which clocked up more than four million
Youtube views, featured a cat and a toddler. What did the cat do to capture the
attention of the worldwide audience?

7.

After a lengthy trial Paralympic athlete Oscar Pistorius was sentenced to five years in
jail in October 2014. What crime was he convicted of?

8.

Europe and the US imposed economic sanctions on Russia after it seized control of a
Ukrainian peninsula with a predominantly Russian-speaking population. Whats the
name of the peninsula?

9.

After 10 years in space, the space probe Rosetta accomplished its mission in November
2014 when it reached its destination. What celestial body did it touch down on?

Developed by Leo Selivan


http://leoxicon.blogspot.com

10. Brutal beheadings and summary executions carried out by the militant group ISIS
sparked worldwide outrage in 2014. What does ISIS stand for?

11. Hollywood celebrities, fans and President Obama himself paid tribute to the actor
Robin Williams, who took his own life in August 2014. Famous for a quirky sense of
humour in his comic roles, Williamss serious performances also earned him wide
acclaim and an Oscar. For which film was he awarded the Oscar?
12. More than 40 people were taken hostage in December 2014 at a Sydney caf. Which
famous chocolate brand does the caf belong to?

13. Russia spared no expense on the Winter Olympics, which will go down in history as the
costliest Olympic Games ever. Which country won most gold medals at the Winter
Olympics?

14. Hollywoods most eligible bachelor finally tied the knot in an intimate wedding in
Venice in 2014 and said that marriage feels pretty damn great. Whats his name?

15. Throughout the summer of 2014, millions of people uploaded to Youtube videos of
themselves dumping ice water on their heads in the name of charity. What charitable
cause did the online campaign aim to raise money for?

16. Novak Djokovic won the Wimbledon 2014 Mens Final for a second time since 2011. Just
like him, the winner of the 2014 Womens Final first tasted victory at Wimbledon in
2011. Whats her name?

17. Cross-dresser Conchita Wurst raised eyebrows and ruffled feathers in some European
countries when (s)he won the Eurovision Song Contest 2014 while sporting a full beard.
What country did the bearded lady represent?

Developed by Leo Selivan


http://leoxicon.blogspot.com

News quiz 2014 - Intermediate


1.

Citizens of which European country went to the polls in September 2014 to decide
whether to declare independence and voted against it?

2.

Despite violent riots on the streets, the World Cup went ahead as planned last summer
in Brazil. The host nation, however, was defeated 7-1 in the semi-final. At the hands of
which country?

3.

A severe outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus made headlines in 2014. In what country
did the outbreak start?

4.

It was a bad year for the airline industry. Which airline lost not one, but two airplanes
under most mysterious circumstances?

5.

Formula 1 star Michael Schumacher was rushed to hospital in a critical condition after
an accident in February 2014. What was he doing when the accident occurred?

6.

A cat and a four-year old boy were stars of one of the most viral videos of the year.
What did the cat do to become a sensation?

7.

Paralympic runner Oscar Pistorius went on trial and was sentenced to five years in jail.
What crime did he commit?

8.

There was a growing tension between Russia and the West in 2014 after Russia took
control of a part of Ukraine with a Russian-speaking majority and historical ties to
Russia? What is this region called?

9.

The spaceship Rosetta made history when it reached its destination in November 2014
after 10 years in space. What was its destination?

Developed by Leo Selivan


http://leoxicon.blogspot.com

10. Killings of innocent civilians at the hands of the terrorist group ISIS caused outrage
around the world. What does ISIS mean?

11. Celebrities, fans and politicians paid their last respects to the veteran actor Robin
Williams, who committed suicide in August 2014. Williams wasnt just a comic genius;
he had a number of memorable dramatic roles. Whats the name of the drama film for
which he was awarded an Oscar?
12. More than 40 people were taken hostage in December 2014 in a Sydney caf belonging
to a famous chocolate brand. Which one?

13. The Winter Olympics held in Sochi on the Black Sea will go down in history as the most
expensive Olympics ever. Which country won most gold medals at the Sochi Winter
Olympics?

14. Whats the name of the Hollywood star and long-time bachelor who finally tied the
knot in a private ceremony in Venice in 2014?

15. Millions of people around the world uploaded to Youtube videos of themselves pouring
ice water on their heads. It was done to raise awareness and money for fighting a rare
disease. Which one?

16. Novak Djokovic won the Wimbledon 2014 Mens Final for a second time since 2011. Just
like him, the Womens Final winner first tasted victory at Wimbledon in 2011. Whats
her name?

17. Conchita Wurst, a man with a beard, dressed as a woman, raised eyebrows in some
European countries when (s)he won the Eurovision Song Contest 2014. What country did
the bearded lady represent?

Developed by Leo Selivan


http://leoxicon.blogspot.com

News quiz 2014 - Answers


1. Scotland

2.

Germany

3.

Guinea

4.

Malaysia Airlines

5.

Skiing

6.

She saved the boy from a dog attack

7.

He shot dead his girlfriend

8.

The Crimea

9.

Comet 67P

Developed by Leo Selivan


http://leoxicon.blogspot.com

10. Islamic State of Iraq and Syria

11. Good Will Hunting

12. Lindt

13. Russia

14. George Clooney

15. ALS or Lou Gehrig's disease

16. Petra Kvitov

17. Austria

Developed by Leo Selivan


http://leoxicon.blogspot.com