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The Bridge that was built by one finger The Bridge that was built by one finger

Read a real life story of engineer John Roebling building the Brooklyn Bridge in New York, USA. Five sentences have been removed from the text. Fill in gaps 1-5 with the missing sentences from A-F. There is one extra sentence that won't fit any gaps.

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READING  WORKSHEET                                                                                                                                      1. Read a real life story of engineer John Roebling building the Brooklyn Bridge in New York, USA.

Five sentences have been removed from the text. Fill in gaps 1-5 with the missing sentences from A-F. There is one extra sentence that won’t fit any gaps.                

              The Bridge that was built by one finger                                                                                                           A

-    Perhaps this is one of the best examples of a     never-say-die attitude that overcomes a terrible physical handicap and achieves an impossible goal.                                                                                                                 B- Everyone had a negative comment to make and felt that the project should be scrapped since the  Roeblings were the only ones who knew how the bridge could be built.                                                                             C - For 13 years Washington tapped out his instructions with his finger on his wife’s arm, until the bridge was finally completed.                                                                                                                                     D - That’s why it was built.                                                                                                                                                                               E - He just had to share the dream with someone else.                                                                                           F - It had never been done before.


    This is a real life story of engineer John Roebling building the Brooklyn Bridge in New York, USA back in 1870. The bridge was completed in 1883, after 13 years. A creative engineer John Roebling was inspired by an idea to build a spectacular bridge connecting New York with the Long Island. However bridge building experts throughout the world thought that this was an impossible feat and told Roebling to forget the idea. It just could not be done. It was not practical. 1___.

     Roebling could not ignore the vision he had in his mind of this bridge. He thought about it all the time and he knew deep in his heart that it could be done. 2__. After much discussion and persuasion he managed to convince his son Washington, an up and coming engineer, that the bridge in fact could be built. Working together for the first time, the father and son developed concepts of how it could be accomplished and how the obstacles could be overcome. With great excitement and inspiration they hired their team and began to build their dream bridge. The project started well, but when it was only a few months underway a tragic accident took the life of John Roebling. Washington was also injured and left with a certain amount of brain damage, which resulted in him not being able to talk or walk.

      «We told them so.” “Crazy men and their crazy dreams.” “It’s foolish to chase wild visions.” 3. ___ In spite of his handicap Washington was never discouraged and still had a burning desire to complete the bridge and his mind was still as sharp as ever. He tried to inspire and pass on his enthusiasm to some of his friends, but they were too frightened by the task.

     As he lay on his bed in his hospital room, with the sunlight streaming through the windows, a gentle breeze blew the white curtains apart and he was able to see the sky and the tops of the trees outside for just a moment. It seemed that there was a message for him not to give up. Suddenly an idea hit him. All he could do was move one finger and he decided to make the best use of it. By moving this, he slowly developed a code of communication with his wife.


He touched his wife’s arm with that finger, indicating to her that he wanted her to call the engineers again. Then he used the same method of tapping her arm to tell the engineers what to do. It seemed foolish but the project was under way again. 4.__.

    Today the spectacular Brooklyn Bridge stands in all its glory as a tribute to the triumph of one man’s indomitable spirit and his determination not to be defeated by circumstances. It is also a tribute to the engineers and their team work, and to their faith in a man who was considered mad by half the world. It stands too as a tangible monument to the love and devotion of his wife who for 13 long years patiently decoded the messages of her husband and told the engineers what to do.


5.__. Often when we face obstacles in our day-to-day life, our hurdles seem very small in comparison to what many others have to face. The Brooklyn Bridge shows us that dreams that seem impossible can be realized with determination and persistence, no matter what the odds are.

2. Match the following synonyms from the article.                                                                                       

1. Completed- a) likely to become successful soon;                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               2. Spectacular – b) quit;                                                                                                                                                         3. Impossible – c) misfortune;                                                                                                                                                    4. Convince-     d) hurdles                                                                                                                                                        5. Accomplish- e) motivation;                                                                                                                                                                   6. Up and coming – f) employ;                                                                                                                                              7. Obstacles – g) remarkable                                                                                                                                                     8. Inspiration- h) persuade;                                                                                                                                                            9. Hire   i ) finished;                                                                                                                                                                                                                   10. Accident – j) difficult;                                                                                                                                                                                                11. Give up-    k) achieve.                                                                                                                                                                       


3. Match the following phrases:                                                                                                                              

1. Inspired – a) physical handicap                                                                                                                                                         2. Deep in – b) to the love and devotion                                                                                                                                                           3. Managed –c) by circumstances                                                                                                                                                        4. The obstacles could be – d) by an idea                                                                                                                                       5. Tapped out – e) to the triumph                                                                                                                                                                      6. A tribute –f) determination and persistence                                                                                                  7. Indomitable –g) overcome                                                                                                                                                         8. Not to be defeated – h) attitude                                                                                                                                                          9. A tangible monument –i) his instructions                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                10. Patiently decoded – j) to convince                                                                                                                                                11. Never-say-die – k) his heart                                                                                                                                                                      12. Overcomes a terrible- l) the messages                                                                                                                                        13. Can be realized with – m) spirit                                                                                                                               


4. Which words would you use to describe a) John Roebling b) Washington Roebling c) Washington Roebling’s wife? (Explain your choice):                                                                                                       Ambitious, persistent, determined, hard-working, caring, helpful and encouraging, supportive.                                                                                                                 

                                                  5. Answer the questions:

1. How long was the Brooklyn Bridge in New York being built?                                                                           2. What does this spectacular bridge connect?                                                                                                         3. What did bridge building experts throughout the world think and why?                                                               4. Why was John Roebling sure that it could be done?                                                                                         5. What did he manage after much discussion and persuasion?                                                                             6. What concepts did the father and his son develop working together for the first time?                                                   7. How did they begin to build their dream bridge?                                                                                                             8. What tragic accident happened when the project was only a few months underway?                                      9. Why was Washington not being able to talk or walk?                                                                                         10. Why did everyone feel that the project should be scrapped?                                                                            11. Was Washington defeated by circumstances and discouraged by his handicap?                                                                                                 12. Did anybody of his friends support his enthusiasm?                                                                                    13. Did he give up?                                                                                                                                            14. What could he do?                                                                                                                                        15. How did he make the best use of it?                                                                                                                 16. How did he tell the engineers what to do?                                                                                                            17. What is Brooklyn Bridge a tribute to?                                                                                                                18. Why does it stand as a tangible monument to the love and devotion?                                                                19. What is it the examples of?                                                                                                                         20. What does the Brooklyn Bridge show us?












1. Five sentences have been removed from the text. Fill in gaps 1-5 with the missing sentences from A-F. There is one extra sentence that won’t fit any gaps.                 

1-F; 2-E; 3-B; 4-C; 5- A


2. Match the following synonyms from the article.                                                                                        

1-i; 2- g; 3-j; 4-h; 5-k; 6-a; 7-d; 8-e; 9-f; 10-c; 11-b.

3. Match the following phrases:                                                                                                                               

1-d; 2-k; 3-j; 4-g; 5-i; 6- e; 7-m; 8-c; 9- b; 10-l; 11-h; 12-a; 13- f.


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  1. Rabcheniuk Iryna
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