Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Nelson Mandela's Life Story (video + comprehension exercises)

Dec. 5 - South Africa's first black president and anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela dies at the age of 95.


Here is a short documentary about Nelson Mandela and his legacy.

Comprehension questions

  1. Why was Nelson Mandela able to get a good education?
  2. Where did he work while he studied law in Johannesburg?
  3. When did the Nationalist Government come to power in South Africa?
  4. What was the Freedom Charter?
  5. What charge did the Freedom Charter organisers face in 1956?
  6. What happened in Sharpeville in 1960?
  7. What sentence did Mandela receive in 1964?
  8. Where was he sent as a prisoner?
  9. What event signalled the beginning of the end to apartheid?
  10. When was Mandela released from prison?


  • apartheid: a former social system in South Africa in which black people and people from other racial groups did not have the same political and economic rights as white people and were forced to live separately from white people
  • blueprint: a detailed plan of how to do something e.g.  a blueprint for reforming the public school system
  • martial law: control of an area by military forces rather than by the police e.g. The government has imposed/declared martial law throughout the city to stop the riots.  

Now you can try the following quiz:

Related Articles

South Africa's Nelson Mandela dies in Johannesburg
Nelson Mandela death: A life in pictures
Nelson Mandela, anti-apartheid icon and father of modern South Africa, dies 

Related Resources

10 Memorable Quotes spoken by Nelson Mandela – RIP Madiba
World mourns Nelson Mandela (8th December, 2013)
Nelson Mandela free lesson plan