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ESL Worksheets: The World's Newest Countries

Level: ESL Intermediate
Objectives: name countries emerged from the collapse of the former USSR,  Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia; name their respective languages and nationalities
Teacher Notes:
Put students in pairs/small groups and let them discuss the questions below:
1. Has the the map of the world changed in the last few decades?
2. Name any:
- new countries that have recently gained independence (e.g.: South Sudan, Kosovo)

- countries that have recently changed their names (e.g.: Zaire to Congo)

- countries that have recently merged (East&West Germany, North&South Yemen)
As students contribute their examples, introduce more related vocabulary:
secede from: Belarus seceded from the former Soviet Union
split off from: Kosovo split off from Serbia
break away from: Bosnia and Herzegovina broke away from Yugoslavia
split into/divide into: Czechoslovakia split into/divided into Czech Republic and Slovakia
disintegrate into: the Soviet Union disintegrated into 15 separate countries
dissolution of/collapse of the Soviet Union
breakup of the former Yugoslavia
Mention that most of the new countries were the result of the dissolution of the USSR (divided into 15 independent countries), Yugoslavia (7 independent countries) and Czechoslovakia (2 independent countries).
Hand out the worksheet.
In Countries Created from the Former USSR students add suffixes -ian (Ukraine - Ukrainian), -an (Moldova - Moldovan) , -ani (Azerbaijan - Azerbaijani) , -istan (Turkmen - Turkmenistan)  and -stan (Kazakh - Kazakhstan) to name the countries and their respective languages and nationalities.
In Countries Created from the Former Czechoslovakia students practice reading the countries that emerged after the split, their corresponding nationalities and languages.
In Countries Created from the Former Yugoslavia students name countries that came in place of the former Yugoslavia and add suffix -ian to name the respective nationalities and languages (e.g.: Macedonia - Macedonian).
Extension: Ask if there are students in class from the former USSR, Yugoslavia or Czechoslovakia and which respective country they belong to now. What’s their first language - is it different from the official language? What’s the capital city of their country? What are other/minority nationalities populating their country? etc.
If you have world maps handy, have students find the countries on the map. Work on defining locations (e.g.: southeastern Europe), naming neighboring countries and vicinity to bodies of water.
Student Handout

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ESL Worksheet The World's Newest Countries.pdf

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