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Lesson THREE HERE!
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Entrance exam season is right around the corner, and we’re here to make sure you are 100 percent ready for it. For the next several weeks, we will be providing you with additional listening material that you can use to practice and improve your aural comprehension skills.
Each week, you will listen to a short passage on a different topic—one that is interesting and useful in its own right, but one that is also the type of topic test-makers love to include on their exams. Then, after listening to the passage, you will answer ten comprehension questions. Before we listen to today’s passage, Hello! Hello!, here are a few tips:
- It goes without saying that you should always listen to the passage carefully. Give it your undivided attention. That means: no outside distractions. (A passage-only track is available on the KA Wordcast website so you can listen to the passage a second or third time.)
- You can make brief notes of key points and details, but don’t let your note taking distract you from your listening.
- Key vocabulary words are explained in the bonus track. Each key word is clearly defined and accompanied by common synonyms and antonyms as well as sample sentences that show you how the word is used, and how to use it. What better way to augment your active vocabulary!
- The comprehension questions “test” three general areas: FACTUAL CONTENT, LOGICAL INFERENCE, and PERSONAL JUDGMENT. (These are explained on the website and are available to download.) The questions come in three different types or formats: MULTIPLE CHOICE, TRUE OR FALSE, and SHORT ANSWER. The question format will vary, so be sure to listen to the instructions carefully before you answer the questions.
PDF DOWNLOAD: KA Wordcast Listen Up! Lesson 3 HELLO! HELLO!
Listen Up! Lesson THREE: PASSAGE ONLY TRACK
The word “hello” is probably used millions of times every day, but did you know that “hello,” spelled with an “e” as a telephone greeting, was another of the great American inventor Thomas Edison’s discoveries?
We’re all familiar with Alexander Graham Bell, the Scottish genius behind the invention of the telephone, and the story of how, in March 1876, he “telephoned” his assistant, Thomas Watson, using his new device: “Mr. Watson—come here—I want to see you,” Bell said into the mouthpiece. Watson heard the words in another room over the receiver, and then did as he was told, and the world’s first (and perhaps shortest) telephone call was complete.
In 1877, at his New Jersey laboratory, while testing and working on ways to improve Bell’s prototype telephone, Edison, the “Wizard of Menlo Park,” used to shout “Hello!” into the speaker. He had found that the word “hello” was the most easily heard over the line. (Bell himself preferred the maritime phrase, “Ahoy, ahoy!”) Edison even wrote a letter to the president of the Central District and Printing Telegraph Company of Pittsburgh suggesting that the best way to start a telephone conversation was to say “Hello.” And evidently, the suggestion was heeded.
“Hello,” with that spelling, had been used in newspapers and magazines from as early as 1833 and, by the 1860s, was found extensively in American works of literature. (The word itself most likely comes from a German word meaning “to fetch.”) Hunters used a variant of “hello,” “hallo,” spelled with an “a,” to call and warn one another. “Hullo,” on the other hand, spelled with a “u” (and followed by an exclamation point in writing), was used mainly to express surprise. It was similar in meaning to our “Oh my goodness!” or “Oh dear!” Charles Dickens used “Hullo!” in this way in his 1839 novel Oliver Twist. When the London pickpocket the Artful Dodger first notices Oliver, he says to the young orphan, “Hullo, my covey! What’s the row?”
Edison’s habit of using “hello” when greeting people or speaking into the telephone soon spread to his co-workers, and the word eventually became common usage for telephone exchanges. Before they began opening calls with “Hello,” telephone operators had used “Are you there?” or “Are you ready to talk?” to connect callers. By 1889, because of the close link between the popular new greeting and the telephone, central telephone exchange operators had become known as “hello-girls.”
Today’s listening comprehension questions will be SHORT ANSWER and based on FACTUAL CONTENT.
Listening comprehension questions fall into three main types or areas to be tested, as explained below:
- The answer is specifically stated as a detail in the text.
If the text reads, “John Birks Gillespie was born in 1917 in Cheraw, South Carolina,” you might be asked where Gillespie was born or in which year was he born.
- The answer may not be directly stated in the text, but can be understood or inferred from the details given. A direct hint may be given, from which you would have to work out the most logical answer (usually based on a MULTIPLE CHOICE or TRUE OR FALSE question).
For example, if the text describes a “hot and muggy afternoon,” you might be asked what season it is. If the text reads, “In 1872, an abandoned railroad track in the mountains of Pennsylvania became the first roller coaster ride in America,” you may be asked a question like:
“The railroad tracks …
- were made of poor quality steel.
- had not been used for a while.
- were dug up and replaced with roller-coaster tracks.
- were too damaged to use.
You must use the hints given in the passage to work out the most likely answer. In this case, the answer, based on “hot and muggy,” to the first question would be “summer,” and the answer to the second question would be B, with the hint being the word “abandoned.”
- The answer is not directly stated in the text and you might have to read more deeply or “between the lines.”
You may be asked to describe a character’s feelings, reactions, or intentions. For example, if the question is, “How do you know Joanna felt sad on the last day of school?” you would have to find evidence in the descriptive language the author uses. Perhaps Joanna had tears on her cheeks, or she was walking with her head hanging low, or perhaps she had a frown on her face.
Listen to the question carefully and mark your answer. Feel free to pause the recording if you need a moment or two to think about the question.
LISTENING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS
1. What is the name of the Scottish genius who invented the telephone?
2. In what year was the world’s first telephone call made?
3. What were the first words ever spoken over a telephone, and who received the call?
4. What was Thomas Edison doing in his New Jersey laboratory in 1877?
5. What important discovery did Edison make about the word “hello”?
6. What is the most likely origin of the word “hello”?
7. How was one variant of “hello,” “hallo,” spelled with an “a,” used?
8. What variant of “hello” was often used to express surprise in much the same way as we might say “Oh my goodness”?
9. What did telephone operators use as a greeting before they began using “Hello”?
10. By 1889, what had central telephone exchange operators become known as?
Now that you have completed today’s listening comprehension exercise, it’s time to check your answers and see how well you did.
Listen to the Listening Comprehension QUESTIONS and ANSWERS HERE:
Listening comprehension questions and answers will follow immediately after the closing jingle.
You may also download the lesson in PDF format and keep for your reference.
KA WORDCAST: Listen Up! Lesson THREE KEY VOCABULARY
Be sure to listen to the Key Vocabulary bonus track. This will help you improve your understanding of the passage itself and give your vocabulary a big boost.
… did you know that “hello,” spelled with an “e,” as a telephone greeting was another one of the great American inventor Thomas Edison’s discoveries?
A DISCOVERY is the act or process of finding something new or learning about something that wasn’t known before. Synonyms include invention, creation, and finding.
We’ve been learning about the DISCOVERY and colonization of the New World in my American History class this term.
The DISCOVERY of 150-million-year-old fossils in Russia suggests that feathers were more prevalent among dinosaurs than what paleontologists previously believed.
Nearly 100 years ago, astronomer Edwin Hubble made one of science’s greatest DISCOVERIES when he proposed that the universe was not static but expanding.
Write a 1,000-word essay on what you think Sir Isaac Newton meant when he said, “No great DISCOVERY was ever made without a bold guess.”
… while testing and working on ways to improve Bell’s prototype telephone, Edison used to shout “Hello!” into the telephone speaker.
A PROTOTYPE is the first or preliminary model of a machine or device from which other models are improved or copied.
A 15-year-old science-fair finalist has built a hand-warmth-powered flashlight PROTOTYPE that requires no batteries.
On display at the Royal Air Force Museum in London is a PROTOTYPE of a Eurofighter Typhoon, a twin-engine, multipurpose fighter plane still in use today.
A family-run business in Idaho has developed a working PROTOTYPE of a solar-powered roadway that could one day charge cars as they move along or even power entire cities.
(Bell himself preferred the maritime phrase, “Ahoy, ahoy!”)
MARITIME is an adjective that means connected to the sea or ships. Naval, marine, and nautical are some near equivalents.
The MARITIME Museum offers visitors the chance to see a huge collection of boats and ships, including a steam yacht, a Mississippi riverboat, and a full-size nuclear submarine.
MARITIME painting, a genre of art that depicts ships and the sea, was extremely popular during the 17th and 19th centuries.
“Hello,” with that spelling, had been used in newspapers and magazines from as early as 1833 and, by the 1860s, was found extensively in American works of literature.
EXTENSIVELY is the adjective form of EXTENSIVE, which in its most common usage means great in amount or covering or affecting a large area, as in:
Students and teachers have full access to the school library, which boasts an EXTENSIVE collection of books and reference materials, as well as the latest video and digital media.
The new Italian restaurant in Meguro is open for lunch and dinner and has an EXTENSIVE selection of ice creams and other desserts.
EXTENSIVE is also used to describe knowledge and experience and is synonymous with comprehensive, broad, wide-reaching, and thorough.
Joey’s knowledge of classical piano music is very EXTENSIVE and, especially for a nine-year-old, highly impressive.
My experience with Mac software is not EXTENSIVE, but I learn quickly, and I’m confident that I can do the job.
EXTENSIVELY, then, simply means done in an EXTENSIVE way.
Ginger root, or shoga, is used EXTENSIVELY in Japanese cooking.
Benjamin finally settled in Hong Kong after traveling EXTENSIVELY throughout Asia.
When the London pickpocket the Artful Dodger first notices Oliver, he says to the young orphan, “Hullo, my covey! What’s the row?”
The sentence in the quotation marks above was taken from Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist, which was written more than 170 years ago, and the language has evolved a lot since then. The Artful Dodger’s “What’s the ROW?” is probably equivalent to our “What’s up?” or “What’s happening?” In today’s British English, however, a ROW (pronounced “row” not “roh”) is a serious disagreement or a noisy argument between two people. Quarrel, spat, and dispute are some synonyms.
My sister and I often have ROWS over the most trivial things, but we always work out our differences and make up quickly.
The feud between the two neighbors began about a year ago with a ROW about one’s pets wandering into the other’s garden and digging up the flowerbeds.
It’s a shame that Doug and Roddy’s friendship had to end in a ROW over money.
A ROW can also be a loud, unpleasant noise. Racket and commotion are near equivalents.
Which one of you is making that ROW? Stop messing around and go to sleep.
When their teacher stepped out to take a student to see the school nurse, the children in Class B made such a ROW that the principal had to come in and settle them down.
By 1889, because of the close link between the popular new greeting and the telephone, central telephone exchange operators had become known as “hello-girls.”
A LINK is a connection between two or more people or things. Association and relation are similar in meaning.
Scientists are investigating the LINK between the disappearance of bees and insecticides.
Police are investigating a possible LINK between two arson fires that broke out in the city’s business district over the weekend.
Researchers have discovered a strong LINK between vitamin D deficiency and tooth decay in young children.
A LINK can also be the relationship between two or more people, countries, or organizations.
We are interested in establishing a LINK between our school in Tokyo and a primary school in Stockholm for foreign exchanges and student correspondence.
Hanako has retained a strong LINK with the friends she made while she was on a home-stay in Australia.
These days, LINK as a noun also has a couple of other everyday uses. For one, a LINK is a way of traveling or communicating between two places, as in:
Traveling to and from the airport is much easier now since the construction of the high-speed rail LINK connecting Tokyo’s major hub stations with Narita.
Every Tuesday, our class speaks to friends in our sister school in Christchurch via satellite LINK.
A place in a website that is connected electronically to another source page is also called a LINK.
For more information on how you can get involved in this summer’s reading program, please follow the LINK on the website.
And don’t forget that LINK is also a verb that means connect.
Most overhead train lines have now been LINKED with underground lines, making the city’s transportation system even more convenient and efficient.
The suspect now in custody has been LINKED to several other murders in the area.