The Reading / Listening - Level 3

The car company Toyota is shutting down two elevators at its global headquarters to save money. The world's largest automaker said on Thursday it will shut down two of eight elevators at its main Tokyo office. This is to save electricity and to cut down on the costs of operating the building. One reason for this new move is the strengthening Japanese yen. The yen has become much stronger since the UK voted to leave the EU on June the 23rd. One dollar bought nearly 120 yen in January; now it buys just above 100. A stronger yen means Toyota cars sold overseas are more expensive and profits go down. Toyota's profit for the year ending March 2016 was a record ¥2.31 trillion, which is around $23 billion.



A Toyota spokeswoman said the company decided to shut down the elevators several weeks ago because of the rising yen. The company is also adjusting the temperature of air conditioners to save money. The spokeswoman said Toyota took similar cost-cutting measures after the financial crisis that happened in September 2008. That also made the yen strengthen against the dollar. The spokeswoman said: "These policies are not new." She added: "The key objective for the stoppage of elevators specifically is to raise awareness amongst employees, and to remind them of the commitment that Toyota has towards the idea of increasing competitiveness through staying lean and reducing waste."

Try the same news story at these easier levels:

    Level 0 Level 1   or  Level 2

Sources
  • http://www.wsj.com/articles/at-toyota-elevators-stop-as-yen-rises-1467883278
  • http://www.bbc.com/news/business-36742652
  • https://wwwstrong>rt.com/business/350191-toyota-shuts-lifts-yen/


Make sure you try all of the online activities for this reading and listening - There are dictations, multiple choice, drag and drop activities, crosswords, hangman, flash cards, matching activities and a whole lot more. Please enjoy :-)



Warm-ups

1. ELEVATORS: Students walk around the class and talk to other students about elevators. Change partners often and share your findings.

2. CHAT: In pairs / groups, talk about these topics or words from the article. What will the article say about them? What can you say about these words and your life?

       elevators / global / headquarters / electricity / yen / overseas / profits / billion /
       spokeswoman / adjusting / temperature / air conditioners / financial crisis / employee

Have a chat about the topics you liked. Change topics and partners frequently.

3. LAZY: Students A strongly believe elevators make people lazy; Students B strongly believe they don't.  Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

4. SAVINGS: How can people make savings with these things? Talk about this with your partner(s). Change partners often and share what you wrote.

  • Water
  • Mobile phones
  • Tissues
  • Fast food
  • Presents
  • Gaming
MY e-BOOK
See a sample

5. GLOBAL: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word "global". Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.

6. USE LESS: Rank these with your partner. Put the easiest things to use less of at the top. Change partners often and share your rankings.

  • washing machines
  • fridges
  • mobile phones
  • kettles
  • electric lights
  • cars
  • TV
  • air con / heating

Before reading / listening

1. TRUE / FALSE: Read the headline. Guess if a-h below are true (T) or false (F).

  1. The carmaker Toyota is shutting down two elevators to save money.     T / F
  2. There are eight elevators in Toyota's headquarters in Tokyo.     T / F
  3. A reason for Toyota closing elevators is the stronger Japanese yen.     T / F
  4. Toyota made a profit of $2.31 billion in the year ending March 2016.     T / F
  5. Toyota decided to shut down the elevators several months ago.     T / F
  6. Toyota is also adjusting air-con temperatures to save money.     T / F
  7. A spokeswoman said the key objective was to save money.     T / F
  8. The spokeswoman said the company does not want to be lean.     T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article.

  1. shutting
  2. global
  3. operating
  4. leave
  5. record
  6. several
  7. adjusting
  8. measures
  9. objective
  10. employees
  1. actions
  2. exit
  3. a number of
  4. running
  5. closing
  6. aim
  7. workers
  8. best performance
  9. modifying
  10. worldwide

3. PHRASE MATCH: (Sometimes more than one choice is possible.)

  1. at its global
  2. cut down on the costs of
  3. One dollar bought
  4. Toyota cars sold
  5. profit for the year
  6. because of the rising
  7. adjusting the temperature
  8. the financial
  9. key
  10. raise awareness
  1. crisis
  2. overseas
  3. of air conditioners
  4. yen
  5. headquarters
  6. amongst employees
  7. nearly 120 yen
  8. objective
  9. ending March 2016
  10. operating the building

Gap fill

Put these words into the spaces in the paragraph below.
main
nearly
automaker
record
shutting
since
overseas
costs

The car company Toyota is (1) ____________ down two elevators at its global headquarters to save money. The world's largest (2) ____________ said on Thursday it will shut down two of eight elevators at its (3) ____________ Tokyo office. This is to save electricity and to cut down on the (4) ____________ of operating the building. One reason for this new move is the strengthening Japanese yen. The yen has become much stronger (5) ____________ the UK voted to leave the EU on June the 23rd. One dollar bought (6) ____________ 120 yen in January; now it buys just above 100. A stronger yen means Toyota cars sold (7) ____________ are more expensive and profits go down. Toyota's profit for the year ending March 2016 was a (8) ____________ ¥2.31 trillion, which is around $23 billion.

Put these words into the spaces in the paragraph below.
similar
policies
remind
decided
waste
rising
key
crisis

A Toyota spokeswoman said the company (9) ____________ to shut down the elevators several weeks ago because of the (10) ____________ yen. The company is also adjusting the temperature of air conditioners to save money. The spokeswoman said Toyota took (11) ____________ cost-cutting measures after the financial (12) ____________ that happened in September 2008. That also made the yen strengthen against the dollar. The spokeswoman said: "These (13) ____________ are not new." She added: "The (14) ____________ objective for the stoppage of elevators specifically is to raise awareness amongst employees, and to (15) ____________ them of the commitment that Toyota has towards the idea of increasing competitiveness through staying lean and reducing (16) ____________."

Listening — Guess the answers. Listen to check.

1) Toyota is shutting down two elevators at its global headquarters ______
     a.  to saver money
     b.  to serve money
     c.  to sieve money
     d.  to save money

2)  it will shut down two of eight elevators at its ______
     a.  main Tokyo office
     b.  mains Tokyo office
     c.  mine Tokyo office
     d.  mean Tokyo office

3)  This is to save electricity and to cut down on the costs of ______
     a.  operate in a building
     b.  operating in the building
     c.  operating a building
     d.  operating the building

4)  One dollar bought nearly 120 yen in January; now it buys ______
     a.  just above 100
     b.  justly above 100
     c.  adjust above 100
     d.  juiced above 100

5)  Toyota's profit for the year ending March 2016 was a record ______
     a.  ¥2.31 quadrillion
     b.  ¥2.31 trillion
     c.  ¥2.31 triplets
     d.  ¥2.31 trill

6)  A Toyota spokeswoman said the company decided to shut down the elevators ______
     a.  sever all weeks ago
     b.  severe all weeks ago
     c.  several weeks ago
     d.  overalls weeks ago

7)  The spokeswoman said Toyota took similar cost-cutting measures after ______
     a.  the financially crisis
     b.  the finance shall crisis
     c.  the financial crisis
     d.  the financial cry sis

8)  That also made the yen strengthen ______
     a.  again the dollar
     b.  against the dollar
     c.  against a dollar
     d.  against the dollars

9)  The key objective for the stoppage of elevators specifically is ______
     a.  to rise awareness
     b.  to raise awareness
     c.  to rates awareness
     d.  to race awareness

10)  the idea of increasing competitiveness through staying lean and ______
     a.  reduces waste
     b.  reduce in waste
     c.  reduction waste
     d.  reducing waste

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

The car company Toyota (1) ___________________ two elevators at its global headquarters to save money. The world's largest automaker said on Thursday it will shut down two of eight elevators at its main Tokyo office. This is (2) ___________________ and to cut down on the costs of operating the building. One reason for (3) ___________________ the strengthening Japanese yen. The yen has become (4) ___________________ the UK voted to leave the EU on June the 23rd. One dollar bought nearly 120 yen in January; now it (5) ___________________ 100. A stronger yen means Toyota cars sold overseas are more expensive and profits go down. Toyota's profit for the year ending March 2016 (6) ___________________ ¥2.31 trillion, which is around $23 billion.

A Toyota spokeswoman said the company decided to shut down the elevators (7) ___________________ because of the rising yen. The company (8) ___________________ temperature of air conditioners to save money. The spokeswoman said Toyota took similar cost-cutting measures after the financial crisis (9) ___________________ September 2008. That also made the yen strengthen against the dollar. The spokeswoman said: "These policies are not new." She added: "The (10) ___________________ the stoppage of elevators (11) ___________________ raise awareness amongst employees, and to remind them of the commitment that Toyota has towards the idea of increasing competitiveness (12) ___________________ and reducing waste."

Comprehension questions

  1. How many elevators is Toyota shutting down?
  2. How many elevators are there in Toyota's Tokyo HQ?
  3. What is strengthening that made Toyota make cuts?
  4. What happens to the price of Toyota cars if the yen is stronger?
  5. How much profit did Toyota make for the year ending March 2016?
  6. When did Toyota decide to close down the elevators?
  7. What else is Toyota adjusting to save money?
  8. In what year did Toyota previously make cost-cutting measures?
  9. What does the company want to raise among its workers?
  10. What does the company want to reduce?




Multiple choice quiz

1) How many elevators is Toyota shutting down?
a) 2
b) 20
c) 200
d) 2,000

2) How many elevators are there in Toyota's Tokyo HQ?
a) 88
b) 80
c) 8
d) 18

3) What is strengthening that made Toyota make cuts?
a) robots
b) the yen
c) steel
d) competition

4) What happens to the price of Toyota cars if the yen is stronger?
a) they become cheaper
b) they become unaffordable
c) nothing
d) they become more expensive

5) How much profit did Toyota make for the year ending March 2016?
a) ¥2.31 trillion / $23 billion
b) ¥3.31 trillion / $32 billion
c) ¥3.21 trillion / $2.3 billion
d) ¥2.13 trillion / $3.2 billion

6) When did Toyota decide to close down the elevators?
a) 2008
b) yesterday
c) last week
d) several weeks ago

7) What else is Toyota adjusting to save money?
a) workers' belts
b) air-con temperatures
c) robots
d) assembly lines

8) In what year did Toyota previously make cost-cutting measures?
a) 2004
b) 2010
c) 2006
d) 2008

9) What does the company want to raise among its workers?
a) working conditions
b) salaries
c) awareness
d) issues

10) What does the company want to reduce?
a) cars
b) waste
c) salaries
d) production

Role play

Role A — Kettles

You think kettles are the easiest things to use less of. Tell the others three reasons why and how. Tell them why we can easily use less of their things. Also, tell the others which is the least necessary of these (and why): TV, electric lights or washing machines.

Role B — TV

You think TV is the easiest thing to use less of. Tell the others three reasons why and how. Tell them why we can easily use less of their things. Also, tell the others which is the least necessary of these (and why): kettles, electric lights or washing machines.

Role C — Electric lights

You think electric lights are the easiest things to use less of. Tell the others three reasons why and how. Tell them why we can easily use less of their things. Also, tell the others which is the least necessary of these (and why): TV, kettles or washing machines.

Role D — Washing machines

You think washing machines are the easiest things to use less of. Tell the others three reasons why and how. Tell them why we can easily use less of their things. Also, tell the others which is the least necessary of these (and why): TV, electric lights or kettles.

After reading / listening

1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionary / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words...

'shut'

  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • and 'down'.

  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • • Share your findings with your partners.

    • Make questions using the words you found.

    • Ask your partner / group your questions.

    2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

    •Share your questions with other classmates / groups. •Ask your partner / group your questions.

    3. GAP FILL: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the activity. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

    4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

    5. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall how they were used in the text:

    • several
    • air
    • similar
    • policies
    • key
    • waste
    • global
    • eight
    • reason
    • leave
    • sold
    • year




    Student survey

    Write five GOOD questions about this topic in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper. When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

    (Please look at page 12 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

    Discussion - Toyota closes elevators to save money

    STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

    1. What did you think when you read the headline?
    2. What springs to mind when you hear the word 'elevator'?
    3. What do you think of Toyota for closing two of its elevators?
    4. How important are elevators?
    5. Why do people use an elevator to go up or down one floor?
    6. How much money do you think Toyota will save?
    7. What happens when the dollar becomes stronger or weaker?
    8. What do you know about the Japanese yen?
    9. How will the world change because the UK is leaving the EU?
    10. What do you think of Toyota cars?

    STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

    1. Did you like reading this article? Why/not?
    2. What other things can Toyota do to save money?
    3. Should elevators not stop for just one or two floors?
    4. Should governments set a limit on air conditioner temperatures?
    5. What do you know about the financial crisis of 2008?
    6. How can we get people to use elevators less?
    7. What do you do to save energy?
    8. Will you use the elevator less often from now?
    9. What things do you waste every day?
    10. What questions would you like to ask the boss of Toyota?

    Discussion — Write your own questions

    STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

    (a) ________________

    (b) ________________

    (c) ________________

    (d) ________________

    (e) ________________

    STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

    (f) ________________

    (g) ________________

    (h) ________________

    (i) ________________

    (j) ________________





    Language — Cloze (Gap-fill)

    The car company Toyota is shutting down two elevators at its (1) ____ headquarters to save money. The world's largest automaker said on Thursday it will shut down two of eight elevators at its (2) ____ Tokyo office. This is to save electricity and to cut down on the costs of (3) ____ the building. One reason for this new move is the strengthening Japanese yen. The yen has become (4) ____ stronger since the UK voted to leave the EU on June the 23rd. One dollar bought nearly 120 yen in January; now it buys just (5) ____ 100. A stronger yen means Toyota cars sold overseas are more expensive and profits go down. Toyota's profit for the year (6) ____ March 2016 was a record ¥2.31 trillion, which is around $23 billion.

    A Toyota spokeswoman said the company decided to shut down the elevators (7) ____ weeks ago because of the rising yen. The company is also (8) ____ the temperature of air conditioners to save money. The spokeswoman said Toyota took similar cost-cutting (9) ____ after the financial crisis that happened in September 2008. That also made the yen (10) ____ against the dollar. The spokeswoman said: "These policies are not new." She added: "The (11) ____ objective for the stoppage of elevators specifically is to raise awareness amongst employees, and to remind them of the commitment that Toyota has towards the idea of increasing competitiveness through staying (12) ____ and reducing waste."

    Which of these words go in the above text?

    1. (a)         globe     (b)     globally     (c)     global     (d)     globalise      
    2. (a)         main     (b)     gain     (c)     pain     (d)     vain      
    3. (a)         operating     (b)     operates     (c)     operative     (d)     operational      
    4. (a)         much     (b)     many     (c)     more     (d)     most      
    5. (a)         tops     (b)     high     (c)     up     (d)     above      
    6. (a)         stops     (b)     final     (c)     finished     (d)     ending      
    7. (a)         several     (b)     tiny     (c)     various     (d)     seen      
    8. (a)         adjusts     (b)     adjusted     (c)     adjust     (d)     adjusting      
    9. (a)         measures     (b)     rulers     (c)     tapes     (d)     metrics      
    10. (a)         strongly     (b)     strengthen     (c)     stringent     (d)     stronghold      
    11. (a)         view     (b)     key     (c)     label     (d)     rise      
    12. (a)         lean     (b)     wean     (c)     bean     (d)     teen

    Spelling

    Paragraph 1

    1. at its global aauqesethrdr
    2. save tecyrecilti
    3. the costs of operating the uniibldg
    4. tnnteehsirgng Japanese yen
    5. cars sold soaevrse
    6. fporit for the year ending March

    Paragraph 2

    1. eaveslr weeks ago
    2. tnidagujs the temperature
    3. after the iaanfincl crisis
    4. The key tijobevce
    5. raise ssarwanee amongst employees
    6. staying lean and cenigudr waste

    Put the text back together

    (    )     down. Toyota's profit for the year ending March 2016 was a record ¥2.31 trillion, which is around $23 billion.

    (    )     for this new move is the strengthening Japanese yen. The yen has become much stronger since the UK voted to

    1  )     The car company Toyota is shutting down two elevators at its global headquarters to save money. The world's

    (    )     yen. The company is also adjusting the temperature of air conditioners to save money. The spokeswoman said Toyota

    (    )     office. This is to save electricity and to cut down on the costs of operating the building. One reason

    (    )     employees, and to remind them of the commitment that Toyota has towards the idea of

    (    )     A Toyota spokeswoman said the company decided to shut down the elevators several weeks ago because of the rising

    (    )     the yen strengthen against the dollar. The spokeswoman said: "These policies are not

    (    )     largest automaker said on Thursday it will shut down two of eight elevators at its main Tokyo

    (    )     leave the EU on June the 23rd. One dollar bought nearly 120 yen in January; now it buys just

    (    )     new." She added: "The key objective for the stoppage of elevators specifically is to raise awareness amongst

    (    )     above 100. A stronger yen means Toyota cars sold overseas are more expensive and profits go

    (    )     increasing competitiveness through staying lean and reducing waste."

    (    )     took similar cost-cutting measures after the financial crisis that happened in September 2008. That also made

    Put the words in the right order

    1. two   down   Shutting   headquarters   global   its   at   elevators   .
    2. the   the   building   costs   Cut   of   down   operating   on   .
    3. strengthening   reason   new   the   One   this   is   yen   for   move   .
    4. more  profits   Cars  are   and   down  overseas   expensive   go   sold  .
    5. was   the   ending  2016   a  March   year  record  for  profit  Toyota's  .
    6. several   shut   weeks   down   ago   the   Decided   elevators   to   .
    7. save   of  money   air   Adjusting  conditioners  the   to   temperature   .
    8. financial   cutting   crisis   measures   Similar   after   cost   the   -   .
    9. against   made   the   the   dollar   yen   That   strengthen   also   .
    10. remind   to   and   employees   amongst   awareness   Raise   them   .

    Circle the correct word (20 pairs)

    The car company Toyota is shutting / shut down two elevators at its global headquarters to save money. The world's largest automaker said on Thursday it will shut down two of / for eight elevators at its mainly / main Tokyo office. This is to save / saving electricity and to cut up / down on the costs of operating the building. One reason for this new move is the strong / strengthening Japanese yen. The yen has become much stronger for / since the UK voted to leave the EU on June the 23rd. One dollar bring / bought nearly 120 yen in January; now it buys just above 100. A stronger yen means Toyota cars sold overseas / overseers are more expensive and profits go down. Toyota's profit for the year ending March 2016 was a record ¥2.31 trillion, which is abound / around $23 billion.

    A Toyota spokeswoman said the company decided / decision to shut down the elevators several weeks ago because for / of the rising yen. The company is also adjusting / adjusted the temperature of air conditioners to save money. The spokeswoman said Toyota took similarly / similar cost-cutting measurements / measures after the financial crisis that happened in September 2008. That also made the yen strengthen again / against the dollar. The spokeswoman said: "These policies are not new / newly." She added: "The key objective / objection for the stoppage of elevators specifically is to rise / raise awareness amongst employees, and to remind them of the commitment that Toyota has towards the idea of increasing competitiveness through staying lean and reducing wastes / waste."

    Talk about the connection between each pair of words in italics, and why the correct word is correct.

    Insert the vowels (a, e, i, o, u)

    Th_ c_r c_mp_ny T_y_t_ _s sh_tt_ng d_wn tw_ _l_v_t_rs _t _ts gl_b_l h__dq__rt_rs t_ s_v_ m_n_y. Th_ w_rld's l_rg_st __t_m_k_r s__d _n Th_rsd_y _t w_ll sh_t d_wn tw_ _f __ght _l_v_t_rs _t _ts m__n T_ky_ _ff_c_. Th_s _s t_ s_v_ _l_ctr_c_ty _nd t_ c_t d_wn _n th_ c_sts _f _p_r_t_ng th_ b__ld_ng. _n_ r__s_n f_r th_s n_w m_v_ _s th_ str_ngth_n_ng J_p_n_s_ y_n. Th_ y_n h_s b_c_m_ m_ch str_ng_r s_nc_ th_ _K v_t_d t_ l__v_ th_ __ _n J_n_ th_ 23rd. _n_ d_ll_r b__ght n__rly 120 y_n _n J_n__ry; n_w _t b_ys j_st _b_v_ 100. _ str_ng_r y_n m__ns T_y_t_ c_rs s_ld _v_rs__s _r_ m_r_ _xp_ns_v_ _nd pr_f_ts g_ d_wn. T_y_t_'s pr_f_t f_r th_ y__r _nd_ng M_rch 2016 w_s _ r_c_rd ¥2.31 tr_ll__n, wh_ch _s _r__nd $23 b_ll__n.

    _ T_y_t_ sp_k_sw_m_n s__d th_ c_mp_ny d_c_d_d t_ sh_t d_wn th_ _l_v_t_rs s_v_r_l w__ks _g_ b_c__s_ _f th_ r_s_ng y_n. Th_ c_mp_ny _s _ls_ _dj_st_ng th_ t_mp_r_t_r_ _f __r c_nd_t__n_rs t_ s_v_ m_n_y. Th_ sp_k_sw_m_n s__d T_y_t_ t__k s_m_l_r c_st-c_tt_ng m__s_r_s _ft_r th_ f_n_nc__l cr_s_s th_t h_pp_n_d _n S_pt_mb_r 2008. Th_t _ls_ m_d_ th_ y_n str_ngth_n _g__nst th_ d_ll_r. Th_ sp_k_sw_m_n s__d: "Th_s_ p_l_c__s _r_ n_t n_w." Sh_ _dd_d: "Th_ k_y _bj_ct_v_ f_r th_ st_pp_g_ _f _l_v_t_rs sp_c_f_c_lly _s t_ r__s_ _w_r_n_ss _m_ngst _mpl_y__s, _nd t_ r_m_nd th_m _f th_ c_mm_tm_nt th_t T_y_t_ h_s t_w_rds th_ _d__ _f _ncr__s_ng c_mp_t_t_v_n_ss thr__gh st_y_ng l__n _nd r_d_c_ng w_st_."

    Punctuate the text and add capitals

    the car company toyota is shutting down two elevators at its global headquarters to save money the world's largest automaker said on thursday it will shut down two of eight elevators at its main tokyo office this is to save electricity and to cut down on the costs of operating the building one reason for this new move is the strengthening japanese yen the yen has become much stronger since the uk voted to leave the eu on june the 23rd one dollar bought nearly 120 yen in january now it buys just above 100 a stronger yen means toyota cars sold overseas are more expensive and profits go down toyota's profit for the year ending march 2016 was a record ¥231 trillion which is around $23 billion

    a toyota spokeswoman said the company decided to shut down the elevators several weeks ago because of the rising yen the company is also adjusting the temperature of air conditioners to save money the spokeswoman said toyota took similar cost-cutting measures after the financial crisis that happened in september 2008 that also made the yen strengthen against the dollar the spokeswoman said "these policies are not new" she added "the key objective for the stoppage of elevators specifically is to raise awareness amongst employees and to remind them of the commitment that toyota has towards the idea of increasing competitiveness through staying lean and reducing waste"

    Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

    ThecarcompanyToyotaisshuttingdowntwoelevatorsatitsglobalhead
    quarterstosavemoney.Theworld'slargestautomakersaidonThursda
    yitwillshutdowntwoofeightelevatorsatitsmainTokyooffice.Thisistosa
    veelectricityandtocutdownonthecostsofoperatingthebuilding.Onere
    asonforthisnewmoveisthestrengtheningJapaneseyen.Theyenhasbe
    comemuchstrongersincetheUKvotedtoleavetheEUonJunethe23rd.O
    nedollarboughtnearly120yeninJanuary;nowitbuysjustabove100.As
    trongeryenmeansToyotacarssoldoverseasaremoreexpensiveandpr
    ofitsgodown.Toyota'sprofitfortheyearendingMarch2016wasarecord
    ¥2.31trillion,whichisaround$23billion.AToyotaspokeswomansaidth
    ecompanydecidedtoshutdowntheelevatorsseveralweeksagobecaus
    eoftherisingyen.Thecompanyisalsoadjustingthetemperatureofairco
    nditionerstosavemoney.ThespokeswomansaidToyotatooksimilarco
    st-cuttingmeasuresafterthefinancialcrisisthathappenedinSeptemb
    er2008.Thatalsomadetheyenstrengthenagainstthedollar.Thespoke
    swomansaid:"Thesepoliciesarenotnew."Sheadded:"Thekeyobjectiv
    eforthestoppageofelevatorsspecificallyistoraiseawarenessamongst
    employees,andtoremindthemofthecommitmentthatToyotahastowa
    rdstheideaofincreasingcompetitivenessthroughstayingleanandredu
    cingwaste."

    Free writing

    Write about elevators for 10 minutes. Comment on your partner’s paper.

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    Academic writing

    No one should ever use an elevator to go up or down one or two floors. Discuss.

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    Homework

    1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

    2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find out more about Toyota. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

    3. DOLLAR-YEN: Make a poster about the dollar and yen. Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

    4. SAVINGS: Write a magazine article about Toyota shutting down two of its elevators at its Tokyo headquarters. Include imaginary interviews with people who are for and against this to save money.

    Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down any new words and expressions you hear from your partner(s).

    5. WHAT HAPPENED NEXT? Write a newspaper article about the next stage in this news story. Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Give each other feedback on your articles.

    6. LETTER: Write a letter to an expert on cost cutting. Ask him/her three questions about it. Give him/her three of your ideas on how we can all cut costs. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

    Answers

    (Please look at page 26 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

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