The World and Its People

Chapter 12: Western Europe Today

Web Activity Lesson Plans

The ability to transport people and goods to different regions is vital for a country's economy. In this chapter, students read about the economies of the United Kingdom and France. The economies have benefited from the construction of a high speed rail line that links the British Isles with the European mainland. The rail line passes under the English Channel seabed through the Chunnel, or Channel Tunnel. The Chunnel is considered one of the most important engineering projects of the twentieth century.

Lesson Description
Students will visit a Web site that describes the massive Chunnel construction project. They will read a description of the project and learn how engineering problems from previous tunnel constructions were resolved as the Chunnel was designed. After answering several questions about the Chunnel, students will write a magazine article from the point of view of an engineer and explain the Chunnel's design and significance.

Instructional Objectives

  1. The student will be able to explain why the Chunnel was constructed.
  2. The student will be able to identify how safety features were incorporated into the Chunnel's construction.
  3. The student will be able to explain how the Chunnel benefits Western European countries today.

Student Web Activity Answers

  1. The Chunnel was completed in 1994.
  2. It takes about 20 minutes to travel through the Chunnel.
  3. Tunnel fires, like that which occured in the Holland Tunnel, were common. Engineers built a service tunnel as an escape route between the two major tunnel tubes. There are also several cross-over passages that allow trains to switch from one track to another.
  4. Strict standards were established in tunnels throughout the world for the transportation of chemicals and explosives.
  5. Articles will vary.
Glencoe Online Learning CenterSocial Studies HomeProduct InfoSite MapContact Us

The McGraw-Hill CompaniesGlencoe