Activity 2: Reading & Discussion

Read through the below facts in pairs. Then read
them a second time and highlight words that you
are unfamiliar with. Discuss these words with a friend
or as a class and look them up in the dictionary if you
need to. Write at least 10 new words from the reading into the given space.

More Interesting Facts about Wool

Wool is used in the making of traditional American baseballs. An inner core of cork
or rubber is wrapped tightly in about 200 metres of wool. The wool gives the ball its
springiness. This is then covered with a stitched leather skin. You will find interesting
video clips on the internet to see how a baseball is made.

Named after the comic character Shrek, a New Zealand Merino wether, became
famous after he avoided being caught and shorn for six years by hiding in caves.
After he was caught on the 15th of April 2004 he was shorn in only twenty minutes.
The shearing was broadcast on New Zealand’s national television. His fleece
contained enough wool to make vests for twenty men. Thereafter he was taken to
the New Zealand parliament to meet the prime minister. Shrek became a hugely
popular New Zealand icon. He died when he was about sixteen years old.
(By the way, the Shrek! book, movies and musical are not related to Shrek the wether.

The longest staple:
An Australian sheep was found in New South Wales (a part of Australia) after being
lost in the bush for five years. After he was shorn, the wool staple was 460 mm long.

Ancient Egypt:
Wool was dyed a variety of colours – including red, blue, yellow and green – during
the Middle Kingdom (2040 BC to 1640 BC). It was used for many different purposes
and in many different places during the Graeco-Roman era. It was valued for making
clothing that was not only protective, but also pretty.

Comprehension Questions:

1. Why is wool used in the making of a baseball? (2)
2. How many metres of wool are used in a baseball? (2)
3. Which country was Shrek the sheep from? (2)
4. How many years did Shrek manage to escape the shearers for? (2)
5. How did he manage this? (2)