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Author: Ana-MariaG

Students talk about their volunteer experiences

Submitted and written by Carrie Jung, Instructor in the English for Academic Purposes Capilano University Photos by Richard Berwick • Videotaping by Hugh Soulis • Interviews by Vilien Chen Video editing and layout by Nila Gopaul Capilano University Capilano University is located in North Vancouver. Many students from different countries come to this university to study. Some…

Life Stories
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Tourists love B.C.

Tourists love B.C. – Level 3 Adapted from The Vancouver Sun and The Province by Nila Gopaul B.C. is beautiful. And the world is noticing. In fact, tourism in B.C is up 39 per cent since 2001. In 2014, there were about nine million overnight stays in Metro Vancouver. In 2016, tourists may bring $18 billion…

Business
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Food is not garbage

Food is not garbage Adapted from The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul Level 1 Listen to “Food is not garbage”– Level 1 Reading by Jessica Heafey Metro Vancouver* wants you to recycle your food scraps. Starting in January 2015, food scraps must go into a green bin. Then the city collects the scraps. The scraps make compost…

Food
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Pysanky (peh-SAHN-kee)

Pysanky (peh-SAHN-kee) Level 2 Pysanky* is a special way to make Easter eggs. This art has been around for hundreds of years. It started in Eastern Europe. *Pysanky means “to write”.

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Herons return to Stanley Park

Adapted from the B.C. Ministry of Environment and The Province and The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul • Illustrations by Nola Johnston Level 2 In BC, people can see Great Blue Herons all year. Herons live on the coast. They also live in the southern part of B.C. The heron is a large bird: It is taller than many…

Animals
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Knitting

Knitting Adapted from The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul Level 1 Grandmother, mother and daughter love to knit. Francesca, Zoe and Aija have a knitting store. The store is called Three Bags Full. The store opened in 2006. It sells knitting needles. It sells yarn. Knitting is popular again Many people come to the shop….

Business
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Canada’s first aboriginal arts hotel

Canada’s first aboriginal arts hotel Adapted from The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul Level 3 Skwachàys* Lodge in Vancouver is Canada’s first aboriginal arts hotel. The lodge has 18 rooms. *say:  skywatch-eyes Six aboriginal artists and six designers worked on the rooms. Each room tells a different story. Rooms start at $99/night. Guests can experience…

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Transit tax – yes or no?

Adapted from The Province by Nila Gopaul Are you a Canadian citizen? Do you live in Metro Vancouver?* (See a map on the next page.) Are you a resident of B.C. (for at least six months on or before May 29, 2015)? Are you 18 years of age or older, (on or before May 29, 2015)? Are…

Community
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LSS: Getting a divorce – Part 6

Submitted by Nate Prosser and Alex Peel, Legal Services Society (LSS), Edited by Nila Gopaul • Illustrations by Danette Byatt LSS – Getting a divorce, Part 6/6 Sally was in an abusive relationship. Sally and her children left home. They stayed somewhere safe. A few months have passed. A lot has happened. Now Sally is telling her friend Marsha about…

Social Issues
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Policewoman

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul Level 3 Phyllis Mortimore joined the Vancouver Police Department (VPD) in 1943. At that time, only a few women were police officers. In 1943, none of the women were allowed to carry guns. Women also did not get the same pay as men. One day, Phyllis saw Police…

Social Issues
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Write to Read

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul Level one Listen to “Write to Read”– Level 1 Reading by Jessica Heafey Look on a B.C. map. Can you find Old Masset* or Toosey** ? They are very small places. *Say:  ma-sut     **Say: too-see About 300 people live in Toosey. About 600 people live in Old Masset. These…

Education
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Jerry lost his backpack

Jerry lost his backpack Submitted by Dora Huang, Burnaby School Board LINC Program Try the crossword. Click here. Answer key on the last page of this story. Try more exercises on this story. Click here and go to pages 2 and 3.  On November 5th, Jerry came from China. He got on the number 134…

Life Stories
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Kaillie gets her wish

Listen to “Kaillie gets her wish”– Level 2 Reading by Corey Muench Kaillie gets her wish Adapted by The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul Level 2 Kaillie Humphries, 29, is a Canadian bobsledder. She is also an Olympic champion. Kaillie has won two gold medals. The sport Women’s boblsed became a Winter Olympic sport in 2002….

Sports
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Happily ever after

Adapted from The Province by Nila Gopaul Level 1 Karam and Katari Chand have been married for 87 years. This is a long time to be married. It is a new world record. Karam is 107 years old. Katari is 100 years old. They are from India. Now they live in the U.K. Key to happiness…

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February is Black History Month

Canada Post has issued this special stamp to acknowledge the history of Vancouver’s Hogan’s Alley. What is Black History Month? During this month, we honour the achievements and contributions of black people, past and present. Many of these men and women have fought for equal rights.

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LSS: Dealing with separation – Part 5

Submitted by Nate Prosser and Alex Peel, Legal Services Society (LSS), Edited by Nancy Carson • Illustrations by Danette Byatt Dealing with separation – Part 5/6 Sally left an abusive relationship. Her husband hit her. She took her children and went to stay with a friend. Sally wants to be sure that she will be safe. She needs help,…

Social Issues
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California tourist saves B.C. cyclist

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul and The Westcoast Reader, October 2012 – includes a crossword puzzle Illustrations – Nola Johnston California tourist saves B.C. cyclist Level 2 Nas Rafi is a doctor from California. In July 2012, she visited Vancouver. Like many tourists to the city, Rafi walked around Gastown. It seemed like most days….

Life Stories
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Today is Family Literacy Day

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul Find a fun way or fun ways to learn with your children. You can read together for 15 minutes every day. You can make a grocery list together or write a letter to a grandparent or grandparents. See links and video on the next page.

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Meet a library champion

Submitted by the Vancouver Public Library Meet Shu Ming Chen:  Doctor, recent newcomer to Canada, and proud library champion. Her mission: Support her community and help immigrants discover their local library and all that it offers. Q: Why did you become a library champion? A: When newcomers have just landed, they feel isolated and anxious…

Community
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Fun fact about B.C. – neon

Adapted from The Province by Nila Gopaul Neon signs are electric signs. They contain neon and other gases. The signs are made of glass tubes. These tubes are bent and made into interesting shapes with different colours. In the 1950s, Vancouver had 19,000 neon signs. This means that there was one sign for every 18 people!…

Community
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Canada Winter Games – 2015

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul Level 3 Listen to “Canada Winter Games”– Level 3 Reading by Corey Muench Prince George, B.C., will host the Canada Winter Games in February 2015. The city will also celebrate its 100th birthday.

Sports
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Word of the Year – 2014

Oxford Dictionary’s Word of the Year is … vape. Vape means to inhale and exhale the vapour from an electronic cigarette (e-cig). Vape is short for vapour (noun) or vaporize (verb). People also use vape as an adjective, such as a vape pen and a vape shop. Why vape? E-cigs have become more common in the world. E-cigs give off vapour, not smoke. People used the word twice as…

Education
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LSS: Sally goes to court – Part 4

Submitted by Nate Prosser and Alex Peel, Legal Services Society (LSS), Edited by Nila Gopaul • Illustrations by Danette Byatt Going to court, Part 4/6 WCR and LSS co-publish a series offering readers information about their legal rights in Canada. Sally was in an abusive relationship. Her husband hit her. She took her kids and left their…

Education
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Eagle count in B.C. – January

Counting the Brackendale eagles Adapted from The Province by Nila Gopaul This year is the 29th annual Brackendale eagle count. Every year in January, wintering eagles gather in Brackendale, B.C. Brackendale is near Squamish (see the map below). Volunteers count the eagles. The volunteers work in teams. They walk. They hike about 40 kilometres. And they go out on kayaks and…

Nature
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2015 goals – how to keep them

In the new year, many people make resolutions. Resolutions are promises or goals. For example: “I will quit smoking.” “I will lose weight.” “I will study a new language.” Did you know? Less than 10 per cent of people keep their New Year’s goals. Goals are easy to make. But they are also easy to break….

Life Stories
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Polar swim – 2015

The Polar Bear Swim – 2015 Adapted from The Province by Nila Gopaul The Polar Bear Swim is a tradition. It happens every year on New Year’s Day. Some people dress in costumes. Others wear bathing suits or shorts. Brave people jump into the ice-cold water. They scream. They laugh. They have fun.

Community
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VanDusen Garden – Festival of Lights

Adapted from City of Vancouver by Nila Gopaul Visit the Festival of Lights at VanDusen Garden. There are over one million lights decorating the garden. This year, the garden is celebrating its 30th Anniversary of the Festival of Lights. What to do Dancing Lights show  Schedule for modern set: 5:00pm, 6:00pm, 7:00pm, 8:00pm, and 9:00pm Schedule for classic set: 4:30pm, 5:30pm, 6:30pm, 7:30pm,…

Culture
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Shortbread cookies – easy recipe

Shortbread cookies are a treat at Christmas. Traditional shortbread has three ingredients:  sugar, butter and flour. 1/2 cup of softened butter (125 mL) Add 1/2 cup of powdered sugar (125 mL) Mix together. Add 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla (if you have it)  Add 1 cup of flour (125 mL) Blend. Scoop cookies on cookie sheet (see video). Flatten…

Food
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Christmas sugar cookies

A special thanks to Immigrant Services Society of BC (ISSofBC)

Food
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Christmas in Canada

A special thanks to Immigrant Services Society of BC (ISSofBC)

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Easy holiday ham

Boil 2.5 L of water. Put the ham in the boiling water. Add all the ingredients. List of ingredients – 1kg fillet of ham (plain) and 2.5 L of water – 1 carrot, 1 leek, 1 stalk celery – 1 onion and 3/4 cloves garlic – 1 handful fresh parsley – 1 teaspoon red chili powder…

Food
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Seniors’ stories

                          “Seniors’ Stories” is a project. It is run by The Vancouver Community Network. A team collected the stories from seniors.

Life Stories
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B.C. says sorry

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun and The Province by Nila Gopaul Listen to the story– Level 2 Reading by Corey Muench The year was 1864. B.C. was a British colony. Gold was discovered in the Cariboo. And there was conflict. Men died. The B.C. government wanted to build a toll road to the Cariboo. The government…

Community
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Directions Youth Services

Directions Youth Services helps homeless and at-risk young people. It is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Help from Directions Directions is a safe place. Youth can get hot meals there. They can shower and wash their clothes. Youth can also relax, use computers, and learn art and music. Some people get…

Social Issues
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LSS: Applying for legal aid – Part 3

Submitted by Nate Prosser and Alex Peel, Legal Services Society (LSS), Edited by Nila Gopaul • Illustrations by Danette Byatt Applying for Legal Aid, Part 3/6 WCR and LSS co-publish a series offering readers information about their legal rights in Canada. Sally was in an abusive relationship. Her husband hit her. Sally left her home. She…

Social Issues
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Seven-year-old wants to help

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul Joshua Smith is only seven years old. But he plans to feed over 500 homeless people this Christmas Eve. Joshua and his mother, Traci Smith, have helped feed homeless people for two years. “He’s an average kid,” says his mother. “He’s bratty. He’s sassy. Doesn’t want to…

Life Stories
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The Choi Project

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul Level 2 In 1886, business started in Chinatown in Vancouver, B.C. For 100 years, most customers were Chinese-speaking. Now Chinatown is changing. Ken Lau says, “Some only speak English.” So Ken makes English signs. He puts them beside his vegetables. “Now business is getting better,” says Ken. The…

Culture
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B.C.’s best buildings

The Architecture Foundation of B.C. had a contest. The foundation asked people to vote online to find the top 25 buildings in four areas of B.C. People voted from around the world. Click here to see the top four winners: The Marine Building in Vancouver got the top award – in southern B.C. Seabird Island School in…

Community
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Bear cubs need help

Adapted from The Province by Nila Gopaul In Smithers, B.C., 30 hungry bear cubs* play and live at an animal shelter. The cubs are orphaned. This means each cub has lost its mother. Most mothers were killed by accident – by cars and trucks. *cubs – a young bear, fox, lion

Nature
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Students write to a newspaper

Submitted by: Jennifer Partridge, West Point Grey United Church, ESL teacher Jennifer Partridge’s students wrote letters to a newspaper. They wanted to write about Vancouver’s traffic problems. The learners also wanted to talk about solutions. Here are three of their letters: Read the PDF. Students write to a newspaper-PDF Think about what issues affect your community….

Social Issues
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LSS: What is abuse? Part 2

Submitted by Nate Prosser, Legal Services Society (LSS), Edited by Nila Gopaul • Illustrations by Danette Byatt What is abuse? Part 2/6 Sally and her children are not living in their home. They are staying with a friend. They left because Sally’s husband hits her. Sally is visiting Lisa. Lisa is a community worker. That means that Lisa…

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Trans-Canada dog

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun and The Province by Nila Gopaul Level 2 Pollux the dog escaped through an open gate in 2010. Her owners were heartbroken. Pollux left Montreal and travelled 4,500 km to Kamloops, B.C. Pollux made new friends in Kamloops. “She was really well-behaved,” said one family. The dog had a microchip…

Life Stories
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Halloween costumes … for your dog

This Halloween, man’s best friend, the dog, can dress up, too. Once there were four costumes for pets. Now there are over 20 costumes.

Holidays
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Fall Festival of Chocolate

Daily from October 15, 2014 to November 10, 2014 Learn about events all over Metro Vancouver, including cooking classes, click here. The story of chocolate   Level 3 Adapted from The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul Chocolate comes from the beans of a cacao* fruit tree. The cacao bean is the seed of the fruit. (say: ka-kow)…

Food
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LSS: Getting help with abuse – Part 1

Submitted by Nate Prosser, Legal Services Society (LSS), Edited by Nila Gopaul • Illustrations by Danette Byatt Getting help with abuse – Part 1/6 WCR and LSS co-publish a series offering readers information about their legal rights in Canada. Sally and Marsha are friends. One day they meet. They sit and talk. Then Sally talks about…

Social Issues
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October is Foster Family Month

Adapted from The Province by Nila Gopaul October is Foster Family Month in B.C. Foster care is a way to give a family life to children and teens who cannot live with their own parents. There are about 3,200 foster parents in B.C. They care for 5,900 children and teens in B.C. Many of these parents are reaching…

Holidays
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Salute to Salmon (Oct 3 – 26)

Adapted from CBC News by Nila Gopaul Celebrate the salmon run in October The salmon run is the time when salmon return to the rivers and lakes to spawn (lay eggs). Salmon swim. Why do we call it a “run”, you ask? A run means a route or a journey, especially on a regular basis. The biggest salmon…

Nature
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Anti-bullying

  Adapted from bullyingcanada.ca; thebullyproject.com; and The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul Illustrations by Nola Johnston” Level 2 In June, 2012, Premier Christy Clark announced the B.C. government will spend $2-million to help stop bullying in schools. Did you know? About one in seven children in Canada (aged 11 to 16) is bullied. There are many…

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B.C. First Nation wins land claim

Level 3 [stextbox id=”audio”]Listen to the story B.C. First Nation wins land claim – Level 3 [/stextbox]Reading by: Corey Muench Watch a video of this news story: Visit the links Read more about this landmark case (with video). For more background on this case, read this CBC article (with map).

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Olga, “Super Senior”

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun by Nila Gopaul Level 1 Listen to the story Olga, ‘Super Senior’” – Level 1 Reading by: Jessica Heafey Olga Kotelko had an interesting life. She was born on a farm. Alone, she raised two children. Later, she became a school teacher. For 30 years, she taught in Burnaby, B.C. Olga…

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