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An American man stole a plane from Seattle airport. The man worked for the airline Horizon Air as part of their ground staff at Seattle airport.

He stole the plane after he had finished work for the day. He had no experience flying a plane and people are impressed that he even managed to take off.  He said that he didn’t need help flying because he said that he had “played some video games before”.

Nobody is sure why he stole the plane because it was a very sudden decision. He took off from Seattle airport and flew the plane for 90 minutes. He did a barrel roll while in the plane which almost caused him to crash into a lake.

Air traffic control tried to tell him to land the plane, they wanted to give him instructions on how to do it. However, he said that he didn’t know how to land the plane and that he didn’t want to hurt people if he crashed when landing.

He later crashed the plane on an island where few people live. He died but nobody else was injured in the accident.

Difficult words

Experience: Knowing how to do something because you’ve done it before.

Impress: To admire something or someone.

Sudden: Something happening surprisingly or shockingly.

Barrel Roll: To make a plane go upside down and up again.

Traffic: Many people, cars or objects going the same place at the same time.

Instructions: Something that says step by step how to do something.

Crash: Things smashing into each other.

Few: Not many.

Injure: To get hurt.

Activities

For listening practise, listen to the recorded article here:

British English: 

American English: Coming Soon!

Match the Synonym!

 1.  Experience  A. Surprise
 2. Sudden  B. Some
 3.  Crash  C. Do in the past.
 4. Few  D. Hurt
 5. Injure  E. Smash

True or False?

1. An Australian man stole a plane from an airport. T / F

2. The man worked at the airport. T / F

3. The man said he had never played video games. T / F

4.  The man knew how to land but didn’t want to. T / F

5. The man didn’t want to hurt anybody. T / F

Unscramble the sentence!

1. he / stole / plane / work / the / He / finished / after / had

2. no / He / plane / had / experience / flying / a

3. sure / why / he / Nobody / plane / the / stole / is

4. plane / barrel / a / He / in / did / the / roll / while

5. crashed / on / island / an / plane / the / later / He

Listening and Vocabulary

Listen to the article and fill in the words OR practice vocabulary and fill in the words.

British English: 

American English: Coming Soon!

Impressed Stole Island
Crash Instructions Nobody

An American man _______ a plane from Seattle airport. The man worked for the airline Horizon Air as part of their ground staff at Seattle airport.

He stole the plane after he had finished work for the day. He had no experience flying a plane and people are _____________ that he even managed to take off.  He said that he didn’t need help flying because he said that he had “played some video games before”.

____________ is sure why he stole the plane because it was a very sudden decision. He took off from Seattle airport and flew the plane for 90 minutes. He did a barrel roll while in the plane which almost caused him to _________ into a lake.

Air traffic control tried to tell him to land the plane, they wanted to give him ________________ on how to do it. However, he said that he didn’t know how to land the plane and that he didn’t want to hurt people if he crashed when landing.

He later crashed the plane on an __________ where few people live. He died but nobody else was injured in the accident.

Conversation Questions

Take turns speaking with a partner or try to answer on your own:

1. Did you find this article interesting? Why or why not?
2. Did you learn anything new from this article? If so, what?
3. What do you think about this story?
4. Is airport security strong in your country?
5. Do you think video games can teach people how to do things in the real world?
6. Have there been any airport related terrorist attacks in your country?
7. Do you think mental health is as important as physical health?
8. Does your country provide support for mental health issues?
9. Do you think this man was suffering from a mental health problem?
10. Is mental health a problem in your country?
11. What are the biggest risks to mental health?
12. Do you do anything to improve or maintain your mental health?
13. Does work influence happiness?
14. What do you think someone should do if they are unhappy with their job?
15. Could anything have been done to stop him from stealing the plane?
16. Do you think anything different could have been done to save the man?
17. If he had lived, what do you think his punishment should be for stealing a plane?
18. How is depression treated in your country?
19. What can be done to help people with depression?
20. How should the air traffic controller be supported after experiencing this?