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Outpouring Of Support For France

Famous world landmarks like this one, The London Eye ferriswheel in England, are being lit up in France’s three colours. Photo: Jack Gordon, Flickr













People around the world are expressing encouragement and support for the people of France. In particular, for the people in its capital city, Paris.

In most big cities, there are large buildings or monuments that are famous. For instance, the CN Tower in Toronto, Canada or the “London Eye” ferriswheel in London, England.

Last week, many of them were lit up in the three colours of France’s flag: blue, white and red. In that way, the countries were expressing their support for France.

People are feeling this way about France because something awful happened there last Friday. Explosions killed people in Paris. A terrorist group known as “ISIS” says that they set off the explosions in order to gain awareness for the group and the group’s beliefs. The group also led five other attacks in France that day.

The President of France, Francois Hollande, is putting many measures in place to help protect the country’s citizens.

The mayor of Paris, thanked people for their support. She posted on Twitter “un grand merci du fond du coeur,” — “a big thank-you from the bottom of my heart.” She also posted pictures of various monuments around the world lit up in blue, white and red.

People around the world have also been gathering in support, holding “vigils” (peaceful, supportive gatherings) often outside their country’s French embassies. In Canada, people gathered in many cities across the country including Quebec City, Montreal, Ottawa, Calgary, Vancouver and Toronto.

In Paris on the weekend, many people stood in line for hours to donate blood to help people wounded in the attacks. On Twitter, many people used the search feature #porteouverte (open door) to let people who had been hurt or frightened by the incident know that if they needed a place to stay, they were welcome in their home. More than 300 Red Cross workers have been sent to France to help.

By Kathleen Tilly

Writing/Discussion Prompt
People around the world have taken to Twitter to respond to this tragedy. One person who tweeted is Sir Elton John, a famous singer, who posted the following quotation by Martin Luther King Jr., “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

What does this quotation mean to you? What does it mean in relation to the attacks on Paris? What can we learn from this quotation?

Reading Prompt: Extending Understanding
When something awful happens, people gather together in support and solidarity. The article explains that people around the world have reached out to Parisians (people living in Paris) on social media and by lighting their monuments in the colours of the French flag. They do this to show their sadness and support.

What other ways can people around the world show their support to France? What could you do?

Extend understanding of texts by connecting the ideas in them to their own knowledge, experience, and insights, to other familiar texts, and to the world around them (OME, Reading: 1.6).

Extend understanding of texts, including increasingly complex or difficult texts, by connecting the ideas in them to their own knowledge, experience, and insights, to other familiar texts, and to the world around them (OME, Reading: 1.6).

Language Feature: Nationalities
People from nations around the world have reached out to Paris. Here are some ways that they have done so:
(In the blank after each sentence write the nationality of the people identified. The first one is done for you as an example.)

1. People living in Toronto lit the CN tower in blue, white and red, the colours of the French flag. Torontonians

2. People living in America illuminated several monuments. For example, One World Trade Center was lit in blue, white and red.______________

3. People lit the Tower Bridge bridge in London, England in the colours of the French flag.         ____________

4. The Opera House in Sydney, Australia was illuminated in blue, white and red._________________

5. Calgary Tower in Alberta, Canada was lit with the colours of the French flag to show support and sympathy.____________________