Friday, December 16, 2011


By Tom Geoghegan

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2008/03/05 14:35:24 GMT


A speed reading exercise or a nasty search reading or a careful search reading! You have two minutes per question. Can you rise to the challenge? You should not exceed 20 minutes tops; if you do, you lose the challenge. Level of difficulty: ***

Answer the following questions:

1.      What seems to be the major criticism concerning the modern child?


2.      What does ‘that’ refer to in the phrase ‘The Boy Scout movement was founded to address that’?


3.      There is a major difference between the way adults treated their children in the Edwardian era and now. Parents and other adults no longer resort to _________________________ .

4.      ______________________________________________________________ partly to address the problem of child labour; however, it didn’t solve the problem completely.

5.      Pre-marital sex was not common among Edwardian youngsters for two main reasons.

a)      _________________________________________

b)      _________________________________________

6.      An example of the change in child-parent relations in the post-war period is that ______________________________________________________________________.

7.      a) The 60’s and 70’s are described in the text as ________________________________.

b) What were the two reasons for the above description?


8.      How was the communist threat countered in the 60’s and 70’s?


9.      What characteristic of ‘the more sexual culture’ of the 90’s creates anxiety?


10.  Read the section on the 80’s through carefully and decide whether the fact that 50% of parents believe that childhood is over at 11 is justified (The second paragraph). Prove your answer with information from the text and try to explain the reasons.


  1. The fact that children act like adults at an alarmingly early age.
  2. A moral and physical decline among the youth
  3. Physical punishment
  4. Schooling until ten became compulsory, and this was raised to fourteen in 1918.
  5. Social pressure and Lack of opportunity
  6. Children kept their earnings (rather than giving it to their parents)
  7. The age of mass consumption; There was a newly emancipated working class and young people had cash and optimism in abundance.
  8. By strengthening the family
  9. The fact that it was an aspirational not an educational version of sex.
  10. No. Home entertainment means kids are kept indoors; parents subsidize their children to a very late age. Dependency is a sign of childhood.

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