flesl.net paired stories: dictogloss (Karen Wetterhahn)

web address: flesl.net/Reading/Stories/Series2/Karen_W/KarenW_dictogloss.php

• Dictagloss Activity for ‘Karen Wetterhahn’

text 1

1:When Karen was pouring some of the mercury from one container to another, a few drops fell onto her rubber glove near her thumb.

2: Because she knew the mercury was poisonous, she quickly wiped it off.

3: She was sure that none of the mercury had got into her body.

text 2

1: After the accident, Karen didn’t think about it any more a until five months later when she suddenly found she couldn’t walk properly or speak clearly.

2: As time passed, the poison affected her brain more and more.

4: Her field of vision narrowed until it was as thin as a pencil, and finally she became completely blind.

5: She also lost her hearing.

6: Before she died, she had been in a coma for a long time.

possible teaching points

1: ‘to another, a few drops’ (comma separating main and subordinate clause because subordinate comes first (same thing in following sentence))

2: wipe off (a phrasal verb) [compare with ‘wipe‘ (which seems to have very restricted complementation)]

3: she was sure that none of the mercury (“sure” (mention pronunciation?) is an adjective complemented (completed) by that- clause) [possibility of optional ‘that’]

3: had got into her body (“get into” is a prepositional verb) [one word equivalent = “enter”; compare with other metaphorical uses of ‘get’ ]

4: Karen didn’t think about it (“think about” is a prepositional verb complemented by a noun phrase etc.) [Compare with the (ordinary) transitive verb “think” where “think” has a different meaning and which is complemented by a that- clause]

5: the poison affected her brain more and more “ (more and more” is a multi-word adverb meaning “to an ever increasing extent”) [there seems to be no single-word equivalent]

5: her field of vision narrowed (“to narrow”) [means “become narrow“ (intransitive) (as here) or “make narrow” (transitive); compare with “to flatten” and “to widen” and “to hollow” (also with no suffix because of sound of last syllable?]

6: she became completely blind (could also be“went completely blind” possibility of modification with “completely” shows it’s not a phrasal verb)

6: lost her hearing (i.e. “became deaf, ” “went deaf ”)

6: in a coma (i.e. “unconscious ”)