English plus level_2_reading_texts

yolanda moya
yolanda moyaEstudiante en eoi em casa

english plus 2

English Plus Student’s Book 2 Reading texts 
Unit 1 I don’t go without… (page 10) 
I’m a monk and a monk doesn’t go out without his robes! In Thailand, most Buddhist 
schoolboys become monks for a year. A monk lives with almost no possessions. A monk lives 
in a monastery and he is supposed to wear orange robes. A monk doesn’t wear jeans or 
T-shirts. It’s against the rules to have jewellery and mobile phones in the monastery, but we 
are allowed to have some family photos. My only other possessions are a bowl, a cup, 
sandals and an umbrella. Every day, very early in the morning, we walk around the streets 
with our bowls and people give us food. Why? We aren’t supposed to have money, so we 
can’t buy food. 
I don’t go out without my school tie and my purse. The tie is part of our school uniform. I’ve 
got a house key, my library card and my electronic ID card in my purse. School’s OK, but it’s 
very strict. We use the ID card when we arrive at school and when we go into each class. The 
head teacher doesn’t ask the teachers how many classes we go to. The ID cards give the 
head teacher this information! We use the ID cards to pay for lunch, so we don’t use money 
at school. I’ve got a mobile phone, but we aren’t allowed to use our phones at school. It’s 
against the rules. 
Unit 2 Seeing stars (page 20) 
See celebrity homes in style 
The Classic Car Company offers a three-hour tour of celebrities’ homes for up to five people. 
We don’t use a bus! We give tours of Los Angeles in a classic Cadillac car. We visit about 
thirty different celebrities’ homes in Los Angeles. Don’t forget your camera! 
We also: 
• pick you up from your hotel, 
• give you drinks in the car. 
Hi Ellie, 
We’re having a great time in America. At the moment, I’m sitting in a Cadillac convertible in 
Mulholland Drive, Hollywood! You can see everything in Los Angeles from here. We’re doing 
a tour of celebrity homes in a private car. It’s my mum’s birthday present from Dad. She 
loves films. At the moment, we’re outside Britney Spears’s house. It’s really big and it looks 
like a traditional Mediterranean villa. I think I can see her living room at the front of the 
house. There are lots of windows, so she has a great view of Los Angeles! There’s a big 
balcony, but Britney isn’t sitting outside. She isn’t living here at the moment. Our driver said 
Britney is in London. She’s looking for a holiday home there! 
Love, 
Jen 
Unit 3 Meet the memory masters (page 30) 
Some people call Stephen Wiltshire ‘the human camera’. Stephen was in a helicopter for 
twenty minutes, above London, and then he drew pictures of the city from memory. 
Stephen wasn’t born in London and he doesn’t know the city, but in twenty minutes he 
memorized hundreds of buildings. His pictures weren’t perfect, but they were very detailed. 
English Plus Student’s Book 2 Reading Texts © Oxford University Press
Most people haven’t got a photographic memory like Stephen. In fact, the maximum 
number of things people can usually remember from a list is about six or seven. But it is 
possible to train your brain. 
For example, Mahavir Jain, from India, memorized 18,000 words and definitions from an 
English dictionary. His English exams were easy after that and now he owns three English 
schools. 
People also try to memorize pi. For most people at school, 3.142 is enough, but Akira 
Haraguchi, from Japan, once recited 100,000 digits of pi in sixteen hours. He started at 9.30 
a.m. on a Tuesday and finished at 1.28 a.m. the next day. It was a record. 
There are also memory superstars. Dominic O’Brien was first interested in memory after he 
left school and he started to train his memory. In 1991 he won the World Memory 
Championships. He was World Memory Champion seven more times between 1992 and 
2001. In 2002 Dominic memorized the order of cards in fifty-four packs of playing cards. 
That’s 2,808 cards! The world record was 2,704 cards. When he repeated the cards, Dominic 
was wrong only eight times! 
Unit 4 Niagara Falls – don’t look down! (page 40) 
At Niagara Falls, on the border between the USA and Canada, the River Niagara suddenly 
falls more than fifty metres. Every hour, 2.5 million litres go over the waterfalls. Niagara Falls 
is popular with tourists and in the past it was also popular with daredevils. Three of the most 
famous were The Great Blondin, Signor Farini and Annie Taylor. 
In 1859, Blondin walked across Niagara Falls eight times. Once he cooked eggs while he was 
standing on the tightrope. Another time, he nearly fell into the river while he was carrying a 
man on his back. That day, a man called William Hunt was at Niagara with his girlfriend. As 
they were watching Blondin, Hunt decided to invent stunts which were more spectacular 
and daring than Blondin’s. He changed his name to Signor Farini and began to practise. 
In 1860 a crowd went to see Farini at Niagara. He was walking along his tightrope when he 
stopped and climbed down a thirty-metre rope to a boat. He had a drink, then climbed up 
the rope again and continued walking. He was the new king of the falls. 
There were many heroes of Niagara and also some heroines. In 1901 Annie Taylor became 
the first woman to go over the falls in a barrel. People were waiting for forty minutes before 
Annie’s helpers opened the barrel. People weren’t expecting to see Annie alive, but in fact 
she survived. 
Many others survived stunts at the falls in barrels, balls or simply a bathing suit, but a lot of 
people also died. These days, daredevil acts are prohibited there and there is a maximum 
fine of $10,000. 
Unit 5 Prodigy! (page 50) 
Could you speak another language at the age of eight? At this age, Wendy Vo could speak 
eleven languages fluently. She couldn’t brush her teeth by herself, though! Another child 
genius, S. Chandra Sekhar, could program a computer at seven. At ten he took exams at the 
company Microsoft and two years later, he went to university. 
English Plus Student’s Book 2 Reading Texts © Oxford University Press
Prodigies are children with incredible talents. They can do things that many adults can’t do. 
Some scientists think prodigies are born with their talents. However, their parents usually 
help them. Sometimes children and parents have got the same interests. For example, 
Mozart’s father was a composer and Picasso’s father was a painter. 
Some parents of prodigies are very ambitious or strict. Ainan Cawley is a chemistry prodigy. 
At seven, his parents wanted him to start university! When János Starker, a famous cello 
player, was young, his mother taught their parrot to say ‘Practise, János, practise!’. 
Clearly, life is sometimes difficult for prodigies. How do you make friends at university when 
you’re twelve? And it’s difficult to take a break when a parrot is shouting at you! 
Psychologists believe that parents of prodigies need to help their children but not push them 
too hard. Two-year-old Elise Tan-Roberts’ mum is a good example. Elise broke a record when 
she scored 156 in an IQ exam. Albert Einstein’s score was only 160! Elise’s mother made an 
important decision about her daughter. She said, ‘Her IQ is really high, but if it goes down we 
won’t be upset.’ 
Unit 6 Lucky numbers (page 60) 
At eight minutes past eight on the eighth day of the eighth month of 2008, the Olympic 
Games started in Beijing. In China eight is a lucky number, and people believe that an eight 
in your date of birth will bring good fortune. Millions of Chinese people tried to have an 
‘Olympic baby’ and in 2008 there were a lot more births than in a normal year. In 2016 a lot 
of children will be eight years old in China! 
But why eight? In Mandarin, the pronunciation for eight (ba) sounds similar to the word for 
‘prosperity’. In 1992 someone paid $640,000 for a car number plate with the single number 
8 on it. Eight is also a popular number in phone numbers, addresses and PIN numbers. 
In contrast, you won’t be lucky in China if you have the number four in your date of birth. 
The number four in Mandarin (si) sounds like the word for ‘death’, so many people think it is 
an unlucky number, which will bring you bad fortune. In many East Asian countries buildings 
don’t have any floor numbers with a four in them. So a building whose top floor is 50 may 
only have 36 floors. 
In some European countries and in the USA, the unlucky number is thirteen. The superstition 
started because Judas was the thirteenth person at the Last Supper. People with a fear of 
the number thirteen are triskaidekaphobic. Unfortunately the phobia can also affect people 
who aren’t superstitious, like the man who was happy to buy house number 13 in his road, 
but couldn’t sell it. Maybe he’ll change the number to 12 ½! 
Unit 7 Driving ambition (page 70) 
Karen Lowe wants to be the fastest woman on four wheels. 
A How did you become interested in racing? 
My dad used to race cars, and I watched him when I was younger. I loved the crowds and 
the atmosphere. I competed in karts when I was nine. Then I drove rally cars. This year, I’m 
going to have a go at Formula 3. 
English Plus Student’s Book 2 Reading Texts © Oxford University Press
B How popular is motor racing in the UK? 
It’s massive! The UK is a world centre for motor racing. There are 750 clubs in this country 
and 100,000 competitors. 
C Are most of those competitors men? 
Not at all. There are more women competitors than you think, but you don’t see them very 
often because there aren’t a lot of women in Formula 1. 
D Why are there fewer women in Formula 1? 
Not many women were interested in the past. Also, journalists, sponsors and some drivers 
didn’t support us. Now they say that it’s good to have more women in the sport. I think the 
situation will change. 
E Will a woman win Formula 1 one day? 
Yes, there will be a woman champion, one day. Definitely. 
F Is it easy to become a racing champion? 
Not at all! Racing is really hard. Obviously, you have to be a great driver. Apart from that, 
you need a lot of money in this sport. Last year I was OK, but this year my sponsors aren’t 
going to give me much money. I think I’ll be OK, but I can never be certain. 
G So, what are your plans? 
I’m not going to stop racing! My dad is my manager now and he’s going to contact more 
sponsors. I know that my family will always support me. They’re my biggest supporters. 
Unit 8 Feel the fear (page 80) 
I hate spiders. A lot of people dislike spiders, but I’m really scared of them. If there’s a spider 
in a room, I won’t go in. I have stayed at friends’ houses three times because there were 
spiders in our house. It sounds ridiculous, but if you haven’t got a phobia, you won’t 
understand. I have got a phobia – arachnophobia. 
Two months ago, I went with my mum to see a specialist called Mark Tanner. Mark has 
helped a lot of patients with phobias. Some patients had ‘normal’ phobias, like being 
frightened of dogs, or snakes, or the dark. Some patients had really weird ones, like phobias 
of bananas, or eating in public. He’s helped a girl with a phobia of school as well. She hasn’t 
been at school this year! 
I’ve seen the specialist a few times and he’s been really helpful. First, we looked at photos of 
spiders, and then we watched spiders on a DVD. Next, he gave plastic spiders to my family 
and they hid them around the house. That was really unpleasant, but it’s made me much 
less phobic. I also wrote in my ‘spider diary’ every time I saw a real spider. 
I’ve looked at hundreds of spiders with Mark and my phobia has improved a bit. That’s the 
idea of ‘exposure therapy’. After you’ve seen a thousand spiders, you aren’t scared of them 
anymore. Next week, Mark says 
that I must touch one. I don’t think I’m ready for that! I haven’t touched a spider before and 
I don’t know if I can. We’ll see … 
by Georgia Bushell, Birmingham 
English Plus Student’s Book 2 Reading Texts © Oxford University Press

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English plus level_2_reading_texts

  • 1. English Plus Student’s Book 2 Reading texts Unit 1 I don’t go without… (page 10) I’m a monk and a monk doesn’t go out without his robes! In Thailand, most Buddhist schoolboys become monks for a year. A monk lives with almost no possessions. A monk lives in a monastery and he is supposed to wear orange robes. A monk doesn’t wear jeans or T-shirts. It’s against the rules to have jewellery and mobile phones in the monastery, but we are allowed to have some family photos. My only other possessions are a bowl, a cup, sandals and an umbrella. Every day, very early in the morning, we walk around the streets with our bowls and people give us food. Why? We aren’t supposed to have money, so we can’t buy food. I don’t go out without my school tie and my purse. The tie is part of our school uniform. I’ve got a house key, my library card and my electronic ID card in my purse. School’s OK, but it’s very strict. We use the ID card when we arrive at school and when we go into each class. The head teacher doesn’t ask the teachers how many classes we go to. The ID cards give the head teacher this information! We use the ID cards to pay for lunch, so we don’t use money at school. I’ve got a mobile phone, but we aren’t allowed to use our phones at school. It’s against the rules. Unit 2 Seeing stars (page 20) See celebrity homes in style The Classic Car Company offers a three-hour tour of celebrities’ homes for up to five people. We don’t use a bus! We give tours of Los Angeles in a classic Cadillac car. We visit about thirty different celebrities’ homes in Los Angeles. Don’t forget your camera! We also: • pick you up from your hotel, • give you drinks in the car. Hi Ellie, We’re having a great time in America. At the moment, I’m sitting in a Cadillac convertible in Mulholland Drive, Hollywood! You can see everything in Los Angeles from here. We’re doing a tour of celebrity homes in a private car. It’s my mum’s birthday present from Dad. She loves films. At the moment, we’re outside Britney Spears’s house. It’s really big and it looks like a traditional Mediterranean villa. I think I can see her living room at the front of the house. There are lots of windows, so she has a great view of Los Angeles! There’s a big balcony, but Britney isn’t sitting outside. She isn’t living here at the moment. Our driver said Britney is in London. She’s looking for a holiday home there! Love, Jen Unit 3 Meet the memory masters (page 30) Some people call Stephen Wiltshire ‘the human camera’. Stephen was in a helicopter for twenty minutes, above London, and then he drew pictures of the city from memory. Stephen wasn’t born in London and he doesn’t know the city, but in twenty minutes he memorized hundreds of buildings. His pictures weren’t perfect, but they were very detailed. English Plus Student’s Book 2 Reading Texts © Oxford University Press
  • 2. Most people haven’t got a photographic memory like Stephen. In fact, the maximum number of things people can usually remember from a list is about six or seven. But it is possible to train your brain. For example, Mahavir Jain, from India, memorized 18,000 words and definitions from an English dictionary. His English exams were easy after that and now he owns three English schools. People also try to memorize pi. For most people at school, 3.142 is enough, but Akira Haraguchi, from Japan, once recited 100,000 digits of pi in sixteen hours. He started at 9.30 a.m. on a Tuesday and finished at 1.28 a.m. the next day. It was a record. There are also memory superstars. Dominic O’Brien was first interested in memory after he left school and he started to train his memory. In 1991 he won the World Memory Championships. He was World Memory Champion seven more times between 1992 and 2001. In 2002 Dominic memorized the order of cards in fifty-four packs of playing cards. That’s 2,808 cards! The world record was 2,704 cards. When he repeated the cards, Dominic was wrong only eight times! Unit 4 Niagara Falls – don’t look down! (page 40) At Niagara Falls, on the border between the USA and Canada, the River Niagara suddenly falls more than fifty metres. Every hour, 2.5 million litres go over the waterfalls. Niagara Falls is popular with tourists and in the past it was also popular with daredevils. Three of the most famous were The Great Blondin, Signor Farini and Annie Taylor. In 1859, Blondin walked across Niagara Falls eight times. Once he cooked eggs while he was standing on the tightrope. Another time, he nearly fell into the river while he was carrying a man on his back. That day, a man called William Hunt was at Niagara with his girlfriend. As they were watching Blondin, Hunt decided to invent stunts which were more spectacular and daring than Blondin’s. He changed his name to Signor Farini and began to practise. In 1860 a crowd went to see Farini at Niagara. He was walking along his tightrope when he stopped and climbed down a thirty-metre rope to a boat. He had a drink, then climbed up the rope again and continued walking. He was the new king of the falls. There were many heroes of Niagara and also some heroines. In 1901 Annie Taylor became the first woman to go over the falls in a barrel. People were waiting for forty minutes before Annie’s helpers opened the barrel. People weren’t expecting to see Annie alive, but in fact she survived. Many others survived stunts at the falls in barrels, balls or simply a bathing suit, but a lot of people also died. These days, daredevil acts are prohibited there and there is a maximum fine of $10,000. Unit 5 Prodigy! (page 50) Could you speak another language at the age of eight? At this age, Wendy Vo could speak eleven languages fluently. She couldn’t brush her teeth by herself, though! Another child genius, S. Chandra Sekhar, could program a computer at seven. At ten he took exams at the company Microsoft and two years later, he went to university. English Plus Student’s Book 2 Reading Texts © Oxford University Press
  • 3. Prodigies are children with incredible talents. They can do things that many adults can’t do. Some scientists think prodigies are born with their talents. However, their parents usually help them. Sometimes children and parents have got the same interests. For example, Mozart’s father was a composer and Picasso’s father was a painter. Some parents of prodigies are very ambitious or strict. Ainan Cawley is a chemistry prodigy. At seven, his parents wanted him to start university! When János Starker, a famous cello player, was young, his mother taught their parrot to say ‘Practise, János, practise!’. Clearly, life is sometimes difficult for prodigies. How do you make friends at university when you’re twelve? And it’s difficult to take a break when a parrot is shouting at you! Psychologists believe that parents of prodigies need to help their children but not push them too hard. Two-year-old Elise Tan-Roberts’ mum is a good example. Elise broke a record when she scored 156 in an IQ exam. Albert Einstein’s score was only 160! Elise’s mother made an important decision about her daughter. She said, ‘Her IQ is really high, but if it goes down we won’t be upset.’ Unit 6 Lucky numbers (page 60) At eight minutes past eight on the eighth day of the eighth month of 2008, the Olympic Games started in Beijing. In China eight is a lucky number, and people believe that an eight in your date of birth will bring good fortune. Millions of Chinese people tried to have an ‘Olympic baby’ and in 2008 there were a lot more births than in a normal year. In 2016 a lot of children will be eight years old in China! But why eight? In Mandarin, the pronunciation for eight (ba) sounds similar to the word for ‘prosperity’. In 1992 someone paid $640,000 for a car number plate with the single number 8 on it. Eight is also a popular number in phone numbers, addresses and PIN numbers. In contrast, you won’t be lucky in China if you have the number four in your date of birth. The number four in Mandarin (si) sounds like the word for ‘death’, so many people think it is an unlucky number, which will bring you bad fortune. In many East Asian countries buildings don’t have any floor numbers with a four in them. So a building whose top floor is 50 may only have 36 floors. In some European countries and in the USA, the unlucky number is thirteen. The superstition started because Judas was the thirteenth person at the Last Supper. People with a fear of the number thirteen are triskaidekaphobic. Unfortunately the phobia can also affect people who aren’t superstitious, like the man who was happy to buy house number 13 in his road, but couldn’t sell it. Maybe he’ll change the number to 12 ½! Unit 7 Driving ambition (page 70) Karen Lowe wants to be the fastest woman on four wheels. A How did you become interested in racing? My dad used to race cars, and I watched him when I was younger. I loved the crowds and the atmosphere. I competed in karts when I was nine. Then I drove rally cars. This year, I’m going to have a go at Formula 3. English Plus Student’s Book 2 Reading Texts © Oxford University Press
  • 4. B How popular is motor racing in the UK? It’s massive! The UK is a world centre for motor racing. There are 750 clubs in this country and 100,000 competitors. C Are most of those competitors men? Not at all. There are more women competitors than you think, but you don’t see them very often because there aren’t a lot of women in Formula 1. D Why are there fewer women in Formula 1? Not many women were interested in the past. Also, journalists, sponsors and some drivers didn’t support us. Now they say that it’s good to have more women in the sport. I think the situation will change. E Will a woman win Formula 1 one day? Yes, there will be a woman champion, one day. Definitely. F Is it easy to become a racing champion? Not at all! Racing is really hard. Obviously, you have to be a great driver. Apart from that, you need a lot of money in this sport. Last year I was OK, but this year my sponsors aren’t going to give me much money. I think I’ll be OK, but I can never be certain. G So, what are your plans? I’m not going to stop racing! My dad is my manager now and he’s going to contact more sponsors. I know that my family will always support me. They’re my biggest supporters. Unit 8 Feel the fear (page 80) I hate spiders. A lot of people dislike spiders, but I’m really scared of them. If there’s a spider in a room, I won’t go in. I have stayed at friends’ houses three times because there were spiders in our house. It sounds ridiculous, but if you haven’t got a phobia, you won’t understand. I have got a phobia – arachnophobia. Two months ago, I went with my mum to see a specialist called Mark Tanner. Mark has helped a lot of patients with phobias. Some patients had ‘normal’ phobias, like being frightened of dogs, or snakes, or the dark. Some patients had really weird ones, like phobias of bananas, or eating in public. He’s helped a girl with a phobia of school as well. She hasn’t been at school this year! I’ve seen the specialist a few times and he’s been really helpful. First, we looked at photos of spiders, and then we watched spiders on a DVD. Next, he gave plastic spiders to my family and they hid them around the house. That was really unpleasant, but it’s made me much less phobic. I also wrote in my ‘spider diary’ every time I saw a real spider. I’ve looked at hundreds of spiders with Mark and my phobia has improved a bit. That’s the idea of ‘exposure therapy’. After you’ve seen a thousand spiders, you aren’t scared of them anymore. Next week, Mark says that I must touch one. I don’t think I’m ready for that! I haven’t touched a spider before and I don’t know if I can. We’ll see … by Georgia Bushell, Birmingham English Plus Student’s Book 2 Reading Texts © Oxford University Press