Last updated at 15:15 GMT, Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Whistling language

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After almost dying out in the 1970s, a kind of whistling language is now undergoing a revival.

Silbo Gomero, as it's known, has become a compulsory subject in one school in Spain's Canary Islands.

The whistling approximates the sounds of the Spanish language.

It can be heard from two miles away, and was used to communicate across valleys and ravines before the arrival of telephones.

dying out

becoming less common until it finally stops existing

undergoing a revival

becoming more popular again

compulsory

required to be done

approximates

almost correctly copies

ravines

very narrow valleys

Exercise

Use one of the words or phrases below to complete each of these sentences from news reports.

Note that you may have to change the form of a word to complete the sentence correctly.

dying out/ undergoing a revival/ compulsory/ approximates/ ravines

1. Just as television progressed from blurry terrible images to something that _________ to human vision, I see that happening as well with sight-restoration technology.

2. The firefighters said La Gomera's difficult terrain - particularly the island's deep ________ - had made it difficult to tackle the blaze.

3. The group called the figures "terrifying", saying the tree loss also endangered animals and put people's livelihoods at risk.
The findings bring the global number of species at risk of _______ to 20,219.

4. Iran's pop music industry is ____________, three decades after it was virtually killed off by the Islamic Revolution.

5. English has been a ____________, subject for primary school children in China since 2001, the year China joined the World Trade Organisation.

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Answers

How did you do?

1

approximates

2

ravines

3

dying out

4

undergoing a revival

5

compulsory