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New York to Moscow by Train (22nd October, 2011)

During the Cold War, back in 1959, American senator Warren Magnuson asked the Soviet Deputy Premier Frol Kozlov about linking their two countries. He was not the first to have this idea. Russia’s Tsar Nicholas II suggested it in 1905. Senator Magnuson believed a bridge or tunnel to connect Siberia and Alaska would help the USA and Soviet Union live next to each other more peacefully. He said: “Real American families driving in American-made cars, will do more [for good relations] than a…conference.”

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Over half a century later, the idea has returned. The BBC* reports that Russian officials want to dig a tunnel under the Bering Sea. It would be 105km long, which is twice as long as the UK to France tunnel. The tunnel would cost around $12 billion to build and take up to 15 years. There would be an extra cost of over $100 billion for an additional 6,000km of train track to connect U.S. and Russian cities and ports. The tunnel would also provide an important link for U.S. and Chinese trade. Passengers could make the New York-Moscow trip by 2041.

* Check out the cool video

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PHRASE MATCH

Match the following phrases from the article.

Paragraph 1

1.

During the Cold

a.

have this idea

2

linking their two

b.

more peacefully

3.

not the first to

c.

Siberia and Alaska

4.

a bridge or tunnel to connect

d.

War

5.

live next to each other

e.

for good relations

6.

do more

f.

countries

 

Paragraph 2

1.

Over half a

a.

$12 billion

2

officials want to dig a tunnel

b.

important link

3.

cost around

c.

-Moscow trip

4.

Russian cities

d.

century later

5.

provide an

e.

under the Bering Sea

6.

Passengers could make the New York

f.

and ports


LISTENING GAP FILL

____________________, back in 1959, American senator Warren Magnuson asked the Soviet Deputy Premier Frol Kozlov ____________________ two countries. He _________________ have this idea. Russia’s Tsar Nicholas II suggested it in 1905. Senator Magnuson ____________________ tunnel to connect Siberia and Alaska would help the USA and Soviet Union live next to each ____________________. He said: “Real American families driving in American-made cars, will do more [____________________] than a…conference.”

Over ____________________, the idea has returned. The BBC reports that Russian officials want to dig a tunnel under the Bering Sea. It would be 105km long, which ____________________ the UK to France tunnel. The tunnel would cost around $12 billion to ____________________ to 15 years. There would be ____________________ $100 billion for an additional 6,000km of train ____________________ and Russian cities and ports. The tunnel would also ____________________ link for U.S. and Chinese trade. Passengers could make the New York-Moscow trip by 2041.


MULTIPLE CHOICE

During the Cold War, (1) ____ in 1959, American senator Warren Magnuson asked the Soviet Deputy Premier Frol Kozlov about (2) ____ their two countries. He was not the first to have this (3) ____. Russia’s Tsar Nicholas II suggested it in 1905. Senator Magnuson believed a bridge or tunnel to connect Siberia and Alaska (4) ____ help the USA and Soviet Union live next to each other more (5) ____. He said: “Real American families driving in American-made cars, will do more [for (6) ____ relations] than a…conference.”

Over half a century (7) ____, the idea has returned. The BBC reports that Russian officials want to (8) ____ a tunnel under the Bering Sea. It would be 105km long, which is twice as long (9) ____ the UK to France tunnel. The tunnel would cost around $12 billion to build and take (10) ____ to 15 years. There would be an extra cost of over $100 billion for an additional 6,000km of train track to connect U.S. and Russian cities and ports. The tunnel would (11) ____ provide an important link for U.S. and Chinese trade. Passengers could make the New York-Moscow trip (12) ____ 2041.

Put the correct words from this table into the article.

1.

(a)

past

(b)

history

(c)

back

2.

(a)

linking

(b)

links

(c)

linked

3.

(a)

ideas

(b)

idea

(c)

ideally

4.

(a)

would

(b)

will

(c)

wouldn’t

5.

(a)

peaceful

(b)

peacefully

(c)

peace

6.

(a)

well

(b)

goodness

(c)

good

7.

(a)

following

(b)

after

(c)

later

8.

(a)

digging

(b)

dig

(c)

dug

9.

(a)

as

(b)

has

(c)

was

10.

(a)

on

(b)

in

(c)

up

11.

(a)

also

(b)

other

(c)

each

12

(a)

at

(b)

by

(c)

under


SPELLING

Spell the jumbled words (from the text) correctly.

Paragraph 1

1.

kningli their two countries

2.

not the tifrs

3.

have this edai

4.

etoccnn Siberia and Alaska

5.

live next to each other more eyalepuclf

6.

good serolinat

 

Paragraph 2

7.

half a yuecnrt later

8.

Russian iisflfoca

9.

wiect as long

10.

an ntadiodlai 6,000km of train track

11.

cities and psotr

12.

erssgnasPe


PUT THE TEXT BACK TOGETHER

Number these lines in the correct order.

(    )

first to have this idea. Russia’s Tsar Nicholas II suggested it in 1905. Senator Magnuson believed

(    )

connect U.S. and Russian cities and ports. The tunnel would also provide an

(    )

as the UK to France tunnel. The tunnel would cost around $12 billion to build and take up to

(    )

Over half a century later, the idea has returned. The BBC reports that Russian officials want

(    )

15 years. There would be an extra cost of over $100 billion for an additional 6,000km of train track to

(    )

to dig a tunnel under the Bering Sea. It would be 105km long, which is twice as long

(    )

in American-made cars, will do more [for good relations] than a…conference.”

(    )

a bridge or tunnel to connect Siberia and Alaska would help the USA and Soviet Union live

1  )

During the Cold War, back in 1959, American senator Warren Magnuson asked

(    )

next to each other more peacefully. He said: “Real American families driving

(    )

the Soviet Deputy Premier Frol Kozlov about linking their two countries. He was not the

(    )

important link for U.S. and Chinese trade. Passengers could make the New York-Moscow trip by 2041.


THE READING / TAPESCRIPT

With a partner, put the words back into the correct order.

1.

, During back the in Cold 1959 War.

2.

not to idea was first this He the have.

3.

or connect Alaska bridge to and A tunnel Siberia.

4.

each to next Live peacefully more other.

5.

for more Do relations good.

6.

a century later , the idea has returned . Over half

7.

want to dig a tunnel under the Bering Sea . Officials

8.

UK tunnel as the France Twice as to long.

9.

extra an be would There billion 100 $ over of cost.

10.

and . S U for link important An trade Chinese.


DISCUSSION (Write your own questions)

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

1.

________________________________________________________

2.

________________________________________________________

3.

________________________________________________________

4.

________________________________________________________

5.

________________________________________________________

6.

________________________________________________________

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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

1.

________________________________________________________

2.

________________________________________________________

3.

________________________________________________________

4.

________________________________________________________

5.

________________________________________________________

6.

________________________________________________________


WRITING

Write about tunnels for 10 minutes. Show your partner your paper. Correct each other’s work.

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________


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. TUNNELS: Search the Internet and find more information about tunnels that link countries. Talk about what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. MAGAZINE ARTICLE: Write a magazine article about tunnels. Include an imaginary interview with the head of the Alaska tunnel project. Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Give each other feedback on your articles.

4. WHAT HAPPENED NEXT? Write a newspaper article about the next stage in this news story. Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Give each other feedback on your articles.

5. LETTER: Write a letter to the head of the Alaska tunnel project. Ask him/her three questions about it. Give him/her three of your opinions on it. Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Your partner will answer the questions you asked.

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