Warm Up

Helpful Words and Phrases

Listen and repeat.

  1. a deposit
    • ex. I had to pay a $100 deposit when I checked in at the hotel.
  2. rescue
    • ex. The police rescued some hikers who were lost in the desert. The news showed pictures of the rescue.
    • ex. More than 100 people came to my grandfather’s funeral.
    • ex. The team was unqualified to do the work, so there were many problems.
    • ex. The new law will help local taxpayers and business owners.


Read the article below and answer your tutor's questions.

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A French mayor is pushing a unique plan to stop people from risking their lives on Mont Blanc, the tallest and deadliest mountain in Western Europe. Every year more than 30,000 people try to climb Mont Blanc, and about 100 climbers die. Now the mayor wants climbers to pay a €15,000 (about ¥2.2 million) deposit to cover possible rescue and funeral costs.

According to the mayor, too many unqualified climbers are gambling with their lives on Mont Blanc, and French taxpayers shouldn’t have to pay for the cost of rescuing them. However, other mayors around Mont Blanc don’t like his deposit idea. They agree that the mountain is dangerous but say that it’s not their property.

Earlier this month, a 26-year-old British man was rescued from Mont Blanc one day after calling for help. He had tried to climb the mountain wearing only a tracksuit without any climbing gear. The rescue team said that his body temperature was 25 degrees Celsius when they found him. The man explained that he was trying to climb Mont Blanc alone for his birthday and got lost during a sudden snowstorm.


Choose a topic and discuss the questions with your tutor.

Mont Blanc

  • Do you think the €15,000 deposit is a good way to stop unqualified climbers? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • In your opinion, why did the British man try to climb Mont Blanc wearing only a tracksuit without any climbing gear (ex. he wanted to challenge himself, he didn't realize how dangerous it was)? Discuss.
  • Every year about 100 people die trying to climb Mont Blanc. Would you like to try climbing it? Why or why not? Discuss.

Risky Activities

  • In your country, what popular activities are risky (ex. climbing volcanoes, scuba diving)? Why? Discuss.
  • In your opinion, who should pay the rescue costs for people who do risky activities (ex. the people who are rescued, taxpayers)? Why? Discuss.
  • Should the government try to stop people from doing risky activities? Why or why not? Discuss.