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A new family law in B.C.

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun and Statistics Canada Level 1 Every year, many couples think of love on February 14. Many couples like Valentine’s Day. They say it is romantic. Some couples go to a restaurant. Some men give women flowers. Some women give men cards. Different couples Some couples are boyfriend and girlfriend, for…

Social Issues
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Are winter snacks killing birds?

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 3 Bird feeders are not a good idea. Other animals eat the food, also. Squirrels can climb into them. Rats and coyotes can eat the food that falls out. Bears like bird seed, too. Visit the links: Greening the desert (permaculture) Youtube Solving all the world’s problems – in…

Animals
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Nunavut’s first guide dog

Adapted from CBC Radio and information courtesy of B.C. Guide Dog Services and Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind Level 1 Noah Papatsie is a very happy man. He lives in Nunavut in northern Canada. Noah has a beautiful new dog. The dog’s name is Xeno. Xeno is a guide dog. Guide dogs help people…

Animals
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Farmland disappears

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun and www.youtube.com Level 2 I interviewed Harold Steves in 2009. Harold is an interesting man. He and my father were both at U.B.C. They both studied Agriculture. Both men became teachers. Visit the links: B.C. Agricultural Land Commission Harold’s family history Many people know about the Steves’ family. The town…

Community
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Shipping containers become homes

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 2 We have seen these huge boxes before. They are large and strong.  We call them containers. These boxes are strong.  They are made out of metal. People use them for many things. Visit the links: Atira Women’s Resource Society The Street to Home Foundation A new use for…

Social Issues
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A vest helps special-needs children

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 3 Lisa Fraser is 24 years old. She is a Vancouver designer. She has a company.  It is called Squeezease Therapy. Lisa’s company makes vests to comfort children with special-needs like autism and ADHD. The name of her vest is called “Snug Vest”. What is a Snug Vest? Lisa’s…

Business
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A tiny bird is big news

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun / burnabybirdguy.wordpress.com / Wikipedia Submission by: Patti-Lea Ryan A tiny bird is big news in B.C. these days. A young Red-flanked Bluetail has come to Queen’s Park in New Westminster. It is far from home. Not a Canadian bird Our tiny visitor is not from Canada. It has come from…

Nature
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A human library

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun and The Province Level 1 A library is a place. It has books, music, movies and other things. Many towns and cities have libraries. People go there to read books and newspapers. People enjoy reading at the library. A library is a quiet place for reading. Visit the links: Read…

Community
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Pikas are tiny farmers

Written by Alice Weber – Glacier National Park Level 1 What is a pika? Pikas are part of the rabbit family. They are the size of a very large mouse. Their ears are big and round. Their legs are short and their tails are very small. Pikas like rocks Pikas live in rock piles in…

Animals
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A Beanpod from Fernie goes to London

Adapted from The Vancouver Courier Level 3 Fernie is famous for skiing. The city calls itself a mountain town. In the winter there is plenty of snow. The Rocky Mountains are on all sides of Fernie. Fernie is in southeastern B.C. Beanpod Chocolate makes its home in Fernie. Maybe now, Fernie will be famous for…

Food
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Hungry snowy owls return to Tsawwassen

Adapted from The Province by Nancy Carson Level 2 Bird lovers are excited. About two dozen snowy owls have come back to B.C.’s Lower Mainland for the winter. The owls are in Boundary Bay in the Tsawwassen area. People have seen them on Vancouver Island, too. Visit the links: Facts about snowy owls Video story about…

Animals
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Family, the first school for young children

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 2 How does a child become a good reader? How does a child become a good speaker? The answer is simple. The family is the first school for a child. A child becomes a good reader because people at home read to him. And read often. A child learns…

Family
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Grade 4 kids in B.C. are top readers

Adapted from The Vancouver Courier by Nancy Carson Level 2 Grade 4 students in B.C. are very good readers. Nine provinces in Canada were in a reading study. There were 45 countries in the same study. Visit the link: Vancouver Sun’s Raise-a-Reader program with videos of local children’s authors Video: Read for the Top Canadian Reading…

Education
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Throw like a girl

Adapted from The Courier Level 2 At one time, people thought boys and girls had different arms and shoulders. These people noticed that boys could throw a ball well. They noticed that girls did not throw well. “You throw like a girl” meant your throw was weak. It meant you could not throw far.  And…

Sports
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A game in Kenya

Level 1 It is one year ago. I go to a city called Kakamega. This city is in western Kenya. Visit the links: Rules of the marbles game, video Game on the street 30 games for outdoor play Hopscotch How to play jacks Work in Kenya I am going to teach teachers. English is a…

Life Stories
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My first Christmas in Denver

My First Christmas in Denver Reader submission from Dorsa Ghiassi (age 11) from Denver, CO My name is Dorsa. I am Iranian. I am now living in Colorado, Denver. I had already lived in Vancouver for 2 years. This is my first Christmas in Denver, Colorado. I decided to make a Christmas dinner all by…

Holidays
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ELSA students helping the homeless

In our ELSA level 3 class, we learned about the problem of homelessness. For a 2nd year, we are collecting clothing donations (socks, toques, and gloves) for the homeless. We will distribute the clothes at a shelter for the homeless in downtown Vancouver near Christmas time.

Social Issues
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Youth program needs donations

Adapted from The Vancouver Courier Level 1 John Kehler works with young people. These young people are ages 12 to 18. They live on the street in Vancouver. Life is very hard for them.

Social Issues
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Good job for a good dog

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 1 Millions of dogs go to work every day. These dogs go with their owners. Every day in the U.S., about 1.4 million owners take 2.3 million dogs to work. Visit the link: Taking dogs to work

Animals
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Shopper safety tips

Adapted from the City of Richmond and RCMP Crime Prevention Level 2 The Christmas season is a busy time for shoppers. The malls and grocery stores are full of people. December is also a busy time for thieves. Read the PDF.

Education
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Winter driving

Adapted from ICBC Level 2 In B.C., heavy rain, fog, snow and ice can make driving difficult. Here are some ideas for driving in the winter: Buy good wipers, so you can see well. Fill fluids such as antifreeze and wiper fluid. Make sure that you have good winter tires if you are driving on roads…

Education
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Sharing good news makes you more happy

Adapted from The Vancouver SunLevel 1 Do you have good news? Do you share it with others? Tell someone good news twice a week. And you will feel more happy with your life.

Life Stories
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Apps for Apes

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 3 The apes at a park in Florida are just like people. The twins, age 8, love their iPad. The teenagers like it, too. The seniors are not interested. The park is letting six orangutans use an iPad to “talk”. Orangutans belong to the ape family. Some trainers have…

Technology
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Aging in a changing world

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun by Nancy Carson Level 2 In October, more than 750 people met in Vancouver. These people study gerontology. Gerontology is the study of old age. These people talked about how people grow old. They also talked about the problems of old people. Visit the links: Dream On Seniors Wish Foundation: information,…

Community
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I feel happy when I dance

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 2 Jesula McCallum lives in Chilliwack, B.C. She is ten years old. And she loves to dance. Visit the links: The story of Jesula Irish dance concert

Life Stories
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A house of Baba Yagas

Adapted from CBC.ca radio by Nancy Carson Level 1 Thérèse Clerc is in her 60s. She lives in Paris, France. She knows she is getting old. She thinks where will I live? How will I live? Who will live with me?

Life Stories
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4-H* helps youth learn many skills

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 3 The 4-H Club started 98 years ago, in 1914. The goal of 4-H was to help youth learn skills in agriculture. But now you do not need to live on a farm to join a 4-H program. You do not even have to own an animal. There are…

Animals
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A two-acre garden on a parking lot

  Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 3 A parking lot in Vancouver holds a very big garden. And 40 kinds of fruits and vegetables grow there. For three years this land can be a garden. A group called Solefood manages this mega project. Michael Ableman, the director of Solefood, has been farming for 40…

Environment
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Stand-up bike puts runners on wheels

  Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 2 It has no seat. So, you cannot sit down. You must stand up to ride it. It has no pedals. So, you have to push or pump the foot platforms up and down. Then the bike moves. People look at Christy Lynn on the bike. They are…

Health
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They love Mud!

Information courtesy of Mudgirls Natural Building Collective website Level 3 Who are the Mudgirls? They are a group of women on the west coast of B.C. And they build whatever you want.  They use local, natural and recycled materials for their projects.  They say, “We love mud!” They build cob cabins, ovens for outdoors, and…

Community
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Canadian’s gelato scoops up award in Italy

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 3 Did you know you can study how to make ice cream at university? James Coleridge knows. In 2009 he studied in Italy for a year. He wanted to learn the old way of making this sweet, frozen treat. History of cold treats These cold treats are not new….

Business
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Save the next dance for me

  Adapted from the Mission City Record Level 3 Lee Kwidzinski wanted to help her father.  Since she is a dance teacher, she decided to teach him to dance.  Later, when he moved into the Pleasant View Care Home in Mission, she decided to teach the other residents as well. Visit the links: Watch a…

Community
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Toola, first foster mother

Adapted from Monterey Bay Aquarium website by Nancy Carson Level 2 Toola is lying alone on a sandy beach. She is very sick.  And she is pregnant. Volunteers find her on the sand. They take Toola to the Monterey Bay Aquarium, in California. The staff at the aquarium think Toola is about six or seven…

Animals
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Just too much hurt… better late than never

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 3 – challenging The treatment of Japanese Canadians and people of Japanese descent during the Second World War is a dark period of Canadian history.  Many Canadians do not understand what happened.  Others do not want to talk about it. Visit the links: A tribute to Japanese Canadian UBC…

Social Issues
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The kid and the pipeline

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun by Nancy Carson 2012 Level 2 Her name is Ta’Kaiya Blaney. She is 11 years old and in Grade 5. Ta’Kaiya lives in North Vancouver. Del, her Dad, and her mother, Anne live with her. Anne is a teacher. She teaches Ta’Kaiya at home. Visit the links: Ta’Kaiya’s song “Shallow Waters” with…

Social Issues
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Toy of the Century

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 2 They are small plastic bricks. They are different colours. And they have studs on them. Some have six studs. Others have four or eight studs. Millions of kids play with the bricks. They call these bricks “Lego”. Visit the links: Story of how LEGO is built Yo-yos with…

Business
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Everybody knows him now

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 3 Everybody knows Mario Gutierrez now. Six years ago, only a few in the world of horses knew his name. No one else had heard of him.  Now, after May 4, 2012, he is famous. Visit the link: Return to Vancouver after the race2

Sports
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