2a Reading Skills

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2a  Reading Skills


A definition, friends, of stress:
Your own reaction to a mess.
Stress from pains to pleasures range,
The common element is change.
Adapt or die, and that's a fact,
And so our bodies must react:
The heart speeds up, the gut slows down,
Facial muscles snarl or frown.
The point is, stress is not unique,
It doesn't mean you're dumb or weak.
Common both to man and beast,
It proves you're still alive, at least!

*from a poem by William Goldsmith, MD*
*MD = (Doctor of Medicine)

1  THINK!  Listen and read the poem. Do you agree with it? Discuss in pairs.

английский язык


2 a RNE  Read the text. Fill in the gaps (1-8) in the text on p. 29 with A, B, C or D. Compare with a partner.

1    A    getting                 B    having                C    doing               D    making
2    A    separated             B    alone                 C    lonely              D    isolated
3    A    method                B    style                  C    way                 D    manner
4    A    beat                     B    visit                   C    do                   D    meet
5    A    up                        B    back                 C    over                 D    away
6    A    big                       B    strong               C    deep                D    heavy
7    A    thought                 B    mind                 C    brain                D    head
8    A    face                      B    manage            C    handle              D    deal

b  Listen and read again. What is the purpose of the text?

3  Match the underlined words/phrases in the text with their meanings: important information, make a difficult situation better, increases, time just before, cause you to remain alert/ready, unable to manage, basically, going crazy, over a long period of time, uncontrollable, judge how important something really is, accept it without complaining. Use each one in a sentence of your own.



4 RNE  Portfolio: Prepare a two-minute talk on stress. Include: • what it is and what causes it • how it affects our bodies • what stresses you out • what you do to relieve stress


5   Choose the correct word. Check in the Word List.

1      A: You look like you've been under/with a lot of stress lately.
        B: I have. I'm totally losing/missing control!

2      A: I can't cope/face with aft this pressure.
        B: Take/keep it easy. Things will get better.

3      A: Is there something you want to get off your chest/mind?
        B: I've broken/taken up with Sue.

4      A: Let's meet on Sunday.
        B: Sorry. I'm up to my nose/eyes in schoolwork.

5      A: Stop it. He can't take/cope the stress.
        B: A little pressure won't harm/ hurt.

6      A: He's going through a really hard time.
        B: I know. His parents' divorce has caused/ brought him great emotional stress.

7       A: This workload is killing/dying me.
         B: Cheer up. Two more weeks and then it'll be over/up.

6  Fill in: giving, proportion, take, strain, temper, tired, building, getting. Explain the phrases in bold.

1    I'm just sick and ... of doing exams all the time!
2    I'm so fed up with the way I look. It's really ... me down!
3    I'm losing control. I can't ... it any more!
4    Things aren't as bad as they seem, Tracy. Don't get things out of ...!


You're studying hard for your A-levels*, you've got a part time job, your parents are in the middle of 1)......... a divorce and you're worried that your best friend is mad at you. Basically, you feel like you're losing control!
Sound familiar? Well, you're not 2)...........because 92% of British teens feel stressed. So, as the pressure mounts in the run-up to exams, we thought we'd give you the lowdown on what stress is and does and, most importantly, what we can do about it!

The lowdown on stress

In a nutshell, "stress" is the 3)....our bodies and minds react to life's changes. Not all stress is bad! In stressful situations, the nervous system causes muscles to tense, breathing to become shallow and adrenaline to be released into your bloodstream as your body gets ready to 4) .... challenges with focus and strength. So, a little stress can keep you on your toes! But, in the long term, it can put too much strain on your heart and cause other physical and emotional symptoms such as headaches, depression, forgetfulness and low self-esteem. The good news, however, is that you CAN deal with stress before it gets out of hand! So, take control and

A is for ACTION

You can take action when stress is created by something you can control! If you have too many things to do, for example, try to break tasks down into smaller 'chunks', and deal with one thing at a time in order of priority. Perhaps it's just that you've taken on too much! If so, give 5)... an afterschool activity for a while, for example, or ask a friend or family member to help you lighten the load.

5    Jo makes me so angry. I lost my .......... with her again yesterday.
6    I think he's feeling the........... of his parents' divorce.
7    I haven't just started feeling stressed. It's been ......... up for weeks.
8    My parents a hard time.

7 Fill in: snarl, stammer, whisper, sigh, groan. Check in the Word List.

1    "Don't do that again," he......... at me angrily.
2    "l-l-l d-d-don't kn-know anything!" he ..........nervously.
3    "We've finished!" John ............. with relief.
4    She was so scared she could only.............her name in a low voice.
5    "Oh, no! Not again!" Sally ......... in agony.    

B is for BEARIT

If there's nothing you can do, you'll just have to 'grin and bear it'! If, at first, you can't change your feelings, leam how to control your thoughts. When you feel overwhelmed, take slow, 6) ... breaths and count to ten. Later, once you've calmed down, analyse the problem rationally. Perhaps you could repeat a saying to help you accept your situation, such as "One day I'll laugh about this". Also, try to keep things in perspective and  don't be too dramatic! Saying that you're'pulling your hair out' or that your workload 'is killing you'will only make you feel worse!

C is for COPE

Find ways to hendle your stress! For a start, doing something as going for a walk or for a coffe with a friend, help take your 7) .......... off the things that are bugging you. Or perhaps witing poetry or keeping a diary will help you to 8) ..... with your negative emotions. Last but not least, getting enough, exercising and eating regular, nutritious meals are all essential for coping with stress! Above all, try to keep a sense of humour and a positive attitude! You don't have to let your problems rule your life!

*Advanced Levels: Exams that pupils in the UK take at age 18

8 Match the phrases. Mime the body movements. What are these phrases in your language?

1 She shook
2 She clenched
3 She shrugged
4 She folded
5 She blushed
6 She stamped
7 She trembled
8 She tapped

a    her fists angrily
b    her head in disbelief
c    with embarrassment at the sight of
new people
d    her shoulders indifferently
e    her feet angrily
f    her arms and waited patiently
g    her fingers nervously on the table

THINK!  Read the statement. What does S. Harris imply? Discuss in pairs.

!Words of Wisdom

The time to relax is when you don't have time for it.
                                                                         (Sydney J. Harris, American journalist)

Английский язык. 11 класс : учеб. для общеобразоват. учреждений / [О.В. Афанасьева, Дж.Дули, И.В. Михеева и др.]. - 2-е изд., доп. и перераб. - М.: Express Publishing : Просвещение, 2009. - 244 с. : ил. - (Английский в фокусе).

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