News, Politics

Harper And Obama Agree On A New Border Plan

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Barack Obama and Stephen Harper
Barack Obama and Stephen Harper meeting, February 19, 2009: Image Pete Souza (White House)

Canada and the United States are working together to make it easier for people to travel across their common border.

This week, U.S. President Barack Obama and Canada’s Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, agreed to a “cross-border plan” to make it easier and quicker for Canadians to travel to the U.S. It will also help companies in both countries to do business together.

Harper has agreed to a “common perimeter”–a type of border all around North America–so more careful checking can be done on who and what comes across the borders from Canada. Canada has also agreed to get more information about people when they come into Canada from other countries and to put in American-style bomb detection machines for checking luggage.

Some people say that the Prime Minister is letting go of some control by agreeing to all the American security rules; they worry that the Americans are getting more out of the plan than the Canadians.

Both leaders have agreed to the plan and will work to make sure it gets implemented. Special projects will test parts of the plan before it is put in place everywhere.

CURRICULUM CONNECTIONS
By Jonathan Tilly

Writing/Discussion Prompt
When you look at a map, you can see that Canada and America are right beside each other; they are neighbours. In what way do Canada and America behave like neighbours? How do they act differently than neighbours?

Reading Prompt: Reading Familiar Words
In order to understand a text, readers must be able to easily read the words they see the most (high frequency words). Underline the words in today’s article that you see often when reading. How many words are on your list? Which words do you find difficult? How can you remember how to spell these words?

Primary
Automatically read and understand most high-frequency words, many regularly used words, and words of personal interest or significance, in a variety of reading contexts (OME, Reading: 3.1).

Junior
Automatically read and understand most words in common use (OME, Reading: 3.1).

Intermediate
Automatically read and understand most words in a wide range of reading contexts (OME, Reading: 3.1).

Grammar Feature: Definite Article vs. Indefinite Article
The word, “the” is called a definite article because it is a word that specifically identifies a person, place, or thing (noun). For example, in the following sentence, “the” tells the reader which plan will be implemented: the plan to to make it easier for people to travel across the common border.

“Both leaders have agreed to the plan and will work to make sure it gets implemented. “

On the other hand, the words “a” and “an” are called indefinite articles because they are words that don’t specifically identify a person, place, or thing (noun). For example, in the sentence below, “a” tells the reader that the specific information about the common perimeter and the type of border all around North America are not known.

“Harper has agreed to a “common perimeter”–a type of border all around North America–so more careful checking can be done on who and what comes across the borders from Canada.”

How important are the definite and indefinite articles. Take a look at the sentences below to see the difference these tiny words make. Discuss these differences with a friend. Then make your own example to show what you know.

1. Lucinda has an awesome guitar.
Lucinda has the awesome guitar.

2. Albert told Freddie a funny joke.
Albert told Freddie the funny joke.

3. All of the Grade 1 students had a new teacher.
All of the Grade 1 students had the new teacher.

4. _______________________________________________.

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