"Halloween". Карточка для контроля навыков чтения с полным пониманием

Разделы: Иностранные языки


I. Read the text.

Halloween comes on October 31. It is not a legal or a national holiday. Schools, offices and banks do not close. Halloween is the day or evening before Alhallow’s or All Saints’ Day. Many Halloween stories and games are hundreds of years old. Halloween customs date back to a time when people believed in devils and witches and ghosts. They thought that these evil spirits could do all kinds of damage to property. Some people tried to ward off witches by painting magic signs on their barns. Others tried to scare them away by nailing a piece of iron, such as a horseshoe, over the door.

Now most people don’t believe in evil spirits. They know that evil spirits do not break steps or spill garbage or pull down fences. If property is damaged, they blame lively, naughty boys and girls. Halloween is still a bad night for the police.

American children celebrate Beggar’s Night as Irish children did it in the 17th century. They dress up in Halloween costumes and go out on the streets to beg. The children also put on strange masks or paint their faces to look like monsters.

They carry baskets, boxes or bags from house to house. Every time they come to a new house, they say “Trick or treat!” They mean, “Give us a treat or we will play a trick on you.” The adults put a treat – money or candy – in their bags.

A favourite Halloween custom is to make a jack-o’-lantern. The children scrape out a pumpkin and cut the outlines of eyes, nose and mouth in the side.They light a candle inside the pumpkin to scare their friends. This custom refers to a man named Jack who still wanders around the earth lighting his way with a pumpkin lantern.

At Halloween parties the guests wear every kind of costume. Many of them wear masks. The hosts usually decorate the rooms with paper moons, witches, bats, ghosts and black cats. They set jack-o’-lanterns in the windows.

The guests often tell fortunes. A young girl sometimes pares an apple so carefully that the peeling comes off in a long strip. She throws the peeling on the floor and hopes it will form the initials of the young man she will marry. Many games played at Halloween parties date back to the harvest festivals of very ancient times. The guests often bob for apples floating in tubs of water. The players must keep their hands behind their back and take an apple out of water with their teeth. The game is very funny and difficult, and players usually get very wet.

Halloween is still observed in the British Isles, the USA, Canada and some European countries. It is primarily regarded as a night of magic and merrymaking.

II. Choose the correct variant and complete the sentences.

  1. Halloween was first celebrated
    1. some months ago.
    2. many years ago.
    3. centuries ago.
  1. People thought that
    1. evil spirits could damage their property.
    2. good spirits would bring them presents.
    3. spirits would repair their property damaged by naughty children.
  1. Halloween is
    1. a very quiet holiday.
    2. a bad night for the police.
    3. the best time for singing carols.
  1. American children
    1. usually stay at home at Halloween night.
    2. dress up in Halloween costumes and go to beg.
    3. give presents to their relatives and friends .
  1. A favourite Halloween custom is
    1. to trim a fur – tree.
    2. to play hide – and -seek.
    3. to make a jack-o’-lantern.
  1. At Halloween parties people
    1. never wear masks.
    2. wear different kinds of costumes.
    3. decorate the rooms with flowers and coloured balloons.
  1. Halloween is
    1. not observed in the English – speaking countries.
    2. observed only in some European countries.
    3. a merry holiday celebrated in the British Isles, the USA, Canada and some European countries.

III. Find and correct the false statements.

  1. Halloween is celebrated on November 5.
  2. Halloween is the eve of All Saints’ Day.
  3. Halloween customs date back to the 19th century..
  4. Nowadays most people do not believe in evil spirits.
  5. Children dress up in scary costumes and go out on the streets to beg.
  6. At Halloween adult people usually wear beautiful party dresses and suits.
  7. Halloween is primarily regarded as a night of magic and merrymaking.

IV. Answer the questions.

  1. Is Halloween a national or an illegal holiday?
  2. How did people try to ward off evil spirits in old times?
  3. Why is Halloween still a bad night for the police?
  4. What do the children mean when they say, “Trick or treat”?
  5. What is the most favourite Halloween custom?
  6. In what way do the hosts decorate the rooms for the Halloween party?
  7. What are some traditional Halloween games?
  8. Halloween is widely celebrated all over the world, isn’t it?

V. Speak about Halloween. You may use the questions as a plan. Try to express your own attitude to this holiday.

Notes

  • to blame – считать виновным
  • to bob – подскакивать
  • to beg – просить
  • carol – Рождественская песня
  • fur-tree – ель
  • to ward off – отвращать

20.04.2011