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www.Breaking News English.com

Ready-to-use ESL / EFL Lessons
Irish woman in $135 million lotto win

URL: http://www.breakingnewsenglish.com/0507/050731-luck.html

Today’s contents


The Article

2

Warm-ups

3

Before Reading / Listening

4

While Reading / Listening

5

After Reading

6

Discussion

7

Speaking

8

Listening Gap Fill

9

Homework

10

Answers

11

31 July, 2005

THE ARTICLE

Irish woman in $135 million lotto win


BNE: People often talk about “the luck of the Irish”, which refers to folks from the Emerald Isle being a tad luckier than ordinary souls. This proved true on July 30, when Dolores McNamara, from Limerick, scooped a mammoth $135 million on the European Lottery in a winner-take-all jackpot. The mind-boggling bounty has left Ms. McNamara recovering from the shock of her sudden windfall and totally speechless. The jackpot had not been won since May and had been rolled over nine times, keeping hopeful ticket holders around Europe on tenterhooks. The winning amount is nearly double that of the previous record best.

Ms. McNamara had been enjoying a quiet drink in a bar when she checked her ticket. She had apparently just told a friend: “There’s little point in checking the ticket. I can’t even win an argument, let alone the lottery”. However, Lady Luck smiled on her seconds later and she went straight to the police, fearful that she might lose her newly landed fortune. A policeman told her he had no jurisdiction to look after the ticket and phoned her bank manager, who readily obliged by placing the ticket in a bank vault for safekeeping. Unfortunately, Monday is a national holiday in Ireland, so Dolores must wait until Tuesday before she can redeem the ticket and get her hands on her millions.


WARM-UPS


1. LUCK: Are you a lucky or unlucky person? Write down three pieces of good luck and three pieces of bad luck that you have had in the past week or two. In pairs / groups, talk about what you wrote. Tell each other how good or bad you think the luck is. Repeat this activity by talking about how lucky you have been in your life.

2. QUICK DEBATE: Students A think everyone in life is born with equal amounts of luck. Students B think some people are naturally luckier than others. Change partners often.

3. CHAT: In pairs / groups, decide which of these topics or words are most interesting and which are most boring.

Luck / Irish people / lotteries / windfalls / lottery numbers / being on tenterhooks / a quiet drink / winning arguments / banks / national holidays

Have a chat about the topics you liked. For more conversation, change topics and partners frequently.



4. LOTTERY: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word “lottery”. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.

5. JACKPOT: Do you buy lottery tickets? Have you ever hit the jackpot or won big? In pairs / groups, talk to each other about lotteries and winning. Do you indulge in any other forms of gambling?

6. LIFE’S LOTTO: People often say life is a lottery – you never know what’s awaiting you, around the corner. In pairs / groups, talk speculate on the possible wonderful or terrible things that could suddenly happen to you (and change your life) in the following situations:

  1. Walking into a convenience store.

  2. Deciding to start studying English.

  3. Taking the airplane instead of the overnight train.

  4. Buying a new computer.

  5. Starting a new job.

  6. Taking the dog for a walk.

  7. Buying a lottery ticket.

  8. Telephoning your best friend.

  9. Checking the time.

  10. Other

Change partners and compare what you talked about.

BEFORE READING / LISTENING


1. TRUE / FALSE: Look at the article’s headline and guess whether these sentences are true (T) or false (F):

a.

A lady from Ireland has scooped the jackpot in a lottery.

T / F

b.

Irish people are famous for having lots of luck.

T / F

c.

There were no other winning tickets for this prize.

T / F

d.

No one had won the jackpot for nineteen successive weeks.

T / F

e.

The winner is also famous for her ability to win arguments.

T / F

f.

The lady went to the police to ask them to protect the ticket.

T / F

g.

Her bank manager vaulted the counter and fled with the ticket.

T / F

h.

The lady must wait a month before she can redeem the ticket.

T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article:

a.

folks

supposedly

b.

tad

won

c.

scooped

cash in

d.

mind-boggling

in suspense

e.

on tenterhooks

authority

f.

apparently

people

g.

landed

incomprehensible

h.

jurisdiction

safe

i.

vault

won

j.

redeem

little

3. PHRASE MATCH: Match the following phrases from the article (sometimes more than one combination is possible):

a.

folks from the Emerald

mammoth $135 million

b.

a tad

just told a friend

c.

scooped a

bounty

d.

mind-boggling

around Europe on tenterhooks

e.

keeping hopeful ticket holders

landed fortune

f.

She had apparently

on her millions

g.

Lady Luck

Isle

h.

she might lose her newly

vault for safekeeping

i.

placing the ticket in a bank

luckier than ordinary souls

j.

get her hands

smiled on her seconds later

WHILE READING / LISTENING


GAP FILL: Put the words in the column on the right into the correct spaces.

Irish woman in $135 million lotto win


BNE: People often talk about “the luck of the Irish”, which _______ to folks from the Emerald Isle being a tad luckier than ordinary _______. This proved true on July 30, when Dolores McNamara, from Limerick, _______ a mammoth $135 million on the European Lottery in a winner-take-all jackpot. The mind-boggling _______ has left Ms. McNamara recovering from the shock of her sudden _______ and totally speechless. The jackpot had not been won since May and had been _______ over nine times, keeping hopeful ticket holders around Europe on _______. The winning amount is nearly _______ that of the previous record best.





bounty
double
scooped
rolled
refers
tenterhooks
windfall
souls


Ms. McNamara had been enjoying a _______ drink in a bar when she checked her ticket. She had apparently just told a friend: “There’s little _______ in checking the ticket. I can’t even win an argument, let _______ the lottery”. However, Lady Luck _______ on her seconds later and she went straight to the police, fearful that she might lose her newly _______ fortune. A policeman told her he had no jurisdiction to look after the ticket and phoned her bank manager, who readily _______ by placing the ticket in a bank vault for safekeeping. Unfortunately, Monday is a national holiday in Ireland, so Dolores must wait until Tuesday before she can _______ the ticket and get her _______ on her millions.





obliged
alone
smiled
hands
quiet
redeem
point
landed

AFTER READING / LISTENING


1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionaries / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words ‘bank’ and ‘vault’.

  • Share your findings with your partners.

  • Make questions using the words you found.

  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

  • Share your questions with other classmates / groups.

  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

3. GAP FILL: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the gap fill. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

5. STUDENT “LOTTERY” SURVEY: In pairs / groups, write down questions about lotteries and winning money.

  • Ask other classmates your questions and note down their answers.

  • Go back to your original partner / group and compare your findings.

  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

6. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall exactly how these were used in the text:

  • refers

  • tad

  • scooped

  • speechless

  • rolled

  • tenterhooks

  • quiet

  • alone

  • smiled

  • jurisdiction

  • obliged

  • hands

DISCUSSION


STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

  1. What were your initial thoughts on this headline?

  2. Did the headline make you want to read the article?

  3. What adjectives describe your feelings as you read the story?

  4. Do you think some people are luckier than others?

  5. How would you react in the seconds or minutes following news that you had won such a large amount of money?

  6. Have you ever received any kind of windfall?

  7. Have you ever been kept on tenterhooks about anything?

  8. How mind-boggling do you think having $135 million would be?

  9. Have you ever been left totally speechless?

  10. Who’s the luckiest person you know?

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

  1. Did you like reading this article?

  2. What did you think about what you read?

  3. Do you buy lottery tickets?

  4. Are you a gambler?

  5. Do you ever feel that life is a lottery?

  6. Are you good at winning arguments?

  7. What would you do if you got your hands on $135 million?

  8. What do you think of lotteries?

  9. Will you go and buy a lottery ticket after this lesson?

  10. Did you like this discussion?

AFTER DISCUSSION: Join another partner / group and tell them what you talked about.

  1. What question would you like to ask about this topic?

  2. What was the most interesting thing you heard?

  3. Was there a question you didn’t like?

  4. Was there something you totally disagreed with?

  5. What did you like talking about?

  6. Do you want to know how anyone else answered the questions?

  7. Which was the most difficult question?

SPEAKING


GAMBLING: Talk to your partner(s) about the following forms of gambling. Which do you think are dangerous? What are the dangers? Which have you tried? What was the attraction?

After you have finished, rank the forms with the most dangerous at the top.


FORMS

DANGERS

ATTRACTIONS



Lottery tickets









Horse racing









Bingo








Pachinko








Fruit / Slot

machines







Casinos








Poker / Cards

with friends







Russian Roulette










Change partners and explain what you discussed with your previous partner(s).

LISTENING


Listen and fill in the spaces.

Irish woman in $135 million lotto win


BNE: People often talk about “the luck of the Irish”, which _______ to folks from the Emerald Isle being a tad luckier than ordinary _______. This proved true on July 30, when Dolores McNamara, from Limerick, _______ a mammoth $135 million on the European Lottery in a winner-take-all jackpot. The mind-boggling _______ has left Ms. McNamara recovering from the shock of her sudden _______ and totally __________. The jackpot had not been won since May and had been rolled over nine times, keeping hopeful ticket holders around Europe on __________. The winning amount is nearly double that of the previous record best.

Ms. McNamara had been enjoying a _______ _______ in a bar when she checked her ticket. She had apparently just told a friend: “There’s little _______ in checking the ticket. I can’t even win an argument, let _______ the lottery”. However, _______ Luck smiled on her seconds later and she went straight to the police, fearful that she might lose her newly _______ fortune. A policeman told her he had no jurisdiction to look after the ticket and phoned her bank manager, who readily _______ by placing the ticket in a bank _______ for safekeeping. Unfortunately, Monday is a national holiday in Ireland, so Dolores must wait until Tuesday before she can _______ the ticket and get her hands on her _______.


HOMEWORK


1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find more information on the European Lottery. Share your findings with your class in the next lesson.

3. LOTTERY PROJECT: Write a plan for a lottery project – a cause that you feel should benefit from the lottery millions. You have $10 million to spend. How do you spend it? Describe your project to your classmates in your next lesson. Did you all write about similar things?

4. DIARY / JOURNAL: Imagine you have won $135 million. Write the entry in your journal / diary about the day after your win. Read your entry to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all write about similar things?

ANSWERS


TRUE / FALSE:

a. T

b. T

c. T

d. F

e. F

f. T

g. F

h. F

SYNONYM MATCH:

a.

folks

people

b.

tad

little

c.

scooped

won

d.

mind-boggling

incomprehensible

e.

on tenterhooks

in suspense

f.

apparently

supposedly

g.

landed

won

h.

jurisdiction

authority

i.

vault

safe

j.

redeem

cash in

PHRASE MATCH:

a.

folks from the Emerald

Isle

b.

a tad

luckier than ordinary souls

c.

scooped a

mammoth $135 million

d.

mind-boggling

bounty

e.

keeping hopeful ticket holders

around Europe on tenterhooks

f.

She had apparently

just told a friend

g.

Lady Luck

smiled on her seconds later

h.

she might lose her newly

landed fortune

i.

placing the ticket in a bank

vault for safekeeping

j.

get her hands

on her millions

GAP FILL:

Irish woman in $135 million lotto win


BNE: People often talk about “the luck of the Irish”, which refers to folks from the Emerald Isle being a tad luckier than ordinary souls. This proved true on July 30, when Dolores McNamara, from Limerick, scooped a mammoth $135 million on the European Lottery in a winner-take-all jackpot. The mind-boggling bounty has left Ms. McNamara recovering from the shock of her sudden windfall and totally speechless. The jackpot had not been won since May and had been rolled over nine times, keeping hopeful ticket holders around Europe on tenterhooks. The winning amount is nearly double that of the previous record best.

Ms. McNamara had been enjoying a quiet drink in a bar when she checked her ticket. She had apparently just told a friend: “There’s little point in checking the ticket. I can’t even win an argument, let alone the lottery”. However, Lady Luck smiled on her seconds later and she went straight to the police, fearful that she might lose her newly landed fortune. A policeman told her he had no jurisdiction to look after the ticket and phoned her bank manager, who readily obliged by placing the ticket in a bank vault for safekeeping. Unfortunately, Monday is a national holiday in Ireland, so Dolores must wait until Tuesday before she can redeem the ticket and get her hands on her millions.





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