You are on page 1of 51

Penguin Readers Factsheets

Level 4 Intermediate The Time Machine


Teachers Notes

The Time Machine


By H.G. Wells

(1895) was his first novel, and this was followed by other
Summary science fiction classics: The Island of Dr Moreau (1896), The
Invisible Man (1897), The War of the Worlds (1898) and The
A group of men, including the narrator, are listening to the First Men in the Moon (1901).
Time Traveller discuss his theories on time. The Time Traveller
He went on to publish critical pamphlets attacking the
produces a miniature Time Machine and makes it disappear
Victorian class system, and joined the famous socialist Fabian
into thin air. He then shows his disbelieving guests a full-scale
Society in London. After World War 1, Wells wrote mainly non-
Time Machine which he has made in his laboratory.
fiction books, including several about the League of Nations.
The next week, the guests return to find their host looking
After ten years living in France, Wells returned to London
tired and dishevelled. After dinner, the Time Traveller begins
and wrote The Holy Terror (1939), in which he studied the
his story.
psychological development of modern dictators based on
He had travelled forward in time to the year 802,701 AD. the careers of Stalin, Mussolini and Hitler. He lived in London
There, he finds himself in a beautiful paradise inhabited by a throughout World War 2. His last book, Mind At The End of Its
race of small, frail, peaceful creatures called Eloi. He explores Tether (1945), had a very bleak view of the future of mankind.
the area but, when he returns, he finds that his machine is It is for his earlier science fiction stories that he is chiefly
gone. He deduces that it has been put inside the pedestal of remembered today.
a nearby statue.
At night, he begins to catch glimpses of strange, white
creatures called Morlocks. He discovers that the Morlocks live Background and themes
underground at the bottom of a system of wells. Meanwhile,
he saves one of the Eloi from drowning and she befriends him. Science: Before Wells, other people had written fantasies
Her name is Weena. about time travel. Wells, however, was the first to introduce
The Time Traveller explores the underground realm of the authentic scientific speculation to the genre. The Time Traveller
Morlocks, using matches to light his way and to keep the describes in great detail his theories on the fourth dimension
Morlocks away (they are afraid of light). He is unable to find his and his observations on astronomy and evolution while on his
time machine and is chased away by the Morlocks. journey. Many of these ideas were inspired by Thomas Huxley,
Wellss teacher at his London science college.
Frightened by the Morlocks, he tries to find a place where he
and Weena will be safe from the creatures night-time hunting. Society: As with all good science fiction, the background
He explores the Palace of Green Porcelain (a derelict museum) of a future fantasy can be an effective way of illuminating
and finds more matches and a metal bar which he can use as deficiencies in present day society. The land of the Eloi and the
a weapon. That night, running away from the Morlocks through Morlocks is a mirror of the Victorian class system, and is a vision
a dark wood, he accidentally starts a fire in which Weena and of the troubled future such a system could entail. Too much
many Morlocks die. The Time Traveller returns to the pedestal comfort and absence of suffering have turned the manager
to find that one of its panels is open. Inside, he finds his Time class into a race of pretty but useless pleasure-seekers. They
Machine. He escapes in his machine, narrowly avoiding have become too weak and stupid to help themselves, and
capture by the Morlocks, and travels into the future, curious to have even lost the basic human instinct to help others in
discover what the end of the world will be like. trouble. The Time Traveller is initially beguiled by their childlike
simplicity, but ends up being contemptuous. The Morlocks, on
He returns, exhausted, to the present time, and tells his story. the other hand, represent the dehumanisation of the working
The next day, he leaves again, and never returns. classes. Unlike the Eloi, they still know how to make things,
but they have become brutal predators of the night. In Wellss
view, this is a warning of things to come if society does not do
About H.G. Wells something to rectify its inequalities and absurdities while there
is still time.
Herbert George Wells (18661946) was born in Bromley, Adventure: This has, of course, all the ingredients of a
Kent, in the UK. His father was a shopkeeper and professional traditional adventure story: a hero trapped by an unseen
cricketer. Herbert studied biology and, leaving science college enemy overcomes overwhelming odds and escapes
without a degree, taught for four years. He settled in London from an impossible situation!
and, from 1893, became a full-time writer. The Time Machine

Pearson Education Limited 2006


Penguin Readers Factsheets

Level 4 Intermediate The Time Machine


Teachers Notes

Chapters 79
Communicative activites
Put students into pairs. Ask them to have this
conversation.
The following teacher-led activities cover the same sections
of text as the exercises at the back of the reader, and Student A: You are the Time Traveller. You want Weena
supplement those exercises. For supplementary exercises to leave her world and travel back in time
covering shorter sections of the book, see the photocopiable with you. Tell her why.
Students Activities pages of this Factsheet. These are
Student B: You are Weena. You want the Time Traveller
primarily for use with class readers but, with the exception of
to stay with you in your world. Tell him why.
discussion and pair/group work questions, can also be used
by students working alone in a self-access centre. Chapters 1012
Put students into groups to discuss these questions.
ACTIVITIES BEFORE READING THE BOOK
(a) If you were the Time Traveller, would you go back
1 Write these words on the board: to look for Weena? Why/why not?
(b) Does the Time Traveller make any mistakes, do you
countryside and cities communication medicine
think? What are they?
travel science family life inventions
Chapters 1315
Put students into small groups. Ask them to discuss the
subjects on the board and life in the future. Put students into pairs to discuss these questions.
What changes will there be in (a) The Time Traveller brings back flowers from the
(a) 50 years time? Land of the Eloi. What would you bring back? Why?
(b) 500 years time? (b) Why doesnt the Time Traveller want the Medical
Man to have the flowers?
Which of the groups ideas are likely and which are (c) What is the moving thing that he sees on the island
unlikely? Will life be better or worse than today? Have a in Chapter 14?
class discussion. (d) Does the story end with a hopeful or a sad
2 Put students into small groups. Ask them to imagine that message? Why?
they are going to travel 1,000 years into the future. Ask (e) If you had invented a time machine, who would you
them to discuss these questions. tell about it? Why?
(a) Are they going to enjoy the experience? Why/why
ACTIVITIES AFTER READING THE BOOK
not?
(b) What will they miss most about life today? 1 Put students into pairs to discuss and write this
(c) Think of five useful things that they can take with imaginary story. The Time Traveller has travelled back to
them. the land of the Eloi and Morlocks. He has arrived at the
beginning of Chapter 12. He is with Weena again, and
ACTIVITIES AFTER READING A SECTION they are looking for a safe place. He wants Weena to be
safe this time. What does he do differently?
Chapters 13
2 Put students into pairs. They imagine that they work for
1 Class discussion. This story happens just over 100 years
a travel company in the future. Ask them to prepare and
ago. In the 1890s, which things that we use today:
write an advertisement for a holiday in the Land of the
(a) had not been invented yet? Eloi. Why would it be The Holiday of a Lifetime?
(b) were already widely used?
3 Put the class into groups of three. Each group will
(c) were exciting new ideas?
prepare a TV programme for either the Eloi or the
2 Class discussion. Is time travel a real possibility in the Morlock political party. How would peoples lives be
future? Why/why not? better if they had an Eloi or Morlock government? Each
Chapters 46 group then presents their TV programme to the rest of
the class. Why should people vote for you and not the
Put students into small groups to discuss these other party?
questions.
(a) Where is the time machine, do you think?
(b) What would you do in the Time Travellers situation?
Would you be patient and learn to live in the new
Word list
world, or would you try to find the time machine as
soon as possible? Why? It will be useful for your students to know the new words
(c) What will the Time Traveller enjoy about life in the found on page 78 of the Reader. They are practised in the
new world? What will he find difficult? Before you read sections in the back of the book. (The
(d) The Time Traveller thinks that absence of danger is definitions are based on those in the Longman Active Study
a bad thing for people. Why? Do you agree? Dictionary.)

Pearson Education Limited 2006 Published and distributed by Pearson Longman


Factsheet written by Chris Rice
Factsheet series developed by Louise James
Penguin Readers Factsheets

Level 4 Intermediate The Time Machine Photocopiable


Students Activities

The Time Machine


By H.G. Wells

These activities can be done alone or with one or more other 2 Which of these words does not describe the Time
students. Pair/group only activities are marked*. Traveller during his journey?

ACTIVITIES BEFORE READING THE BOOK afraid angry cheerful confused


excited nervous worried
1 Read the introduction on pages vix and answer these
questions.
Chapters 46
(a) Where does the Time Traveller travel?
(b) What does he take with him? 1 Does the Time Traveller see these things in the new
(c) What was the biggest change in Britain between land? Write yes (Y) or no (N).
1800 and 1900? (a) familiar flowers
(d) What did Wells think about science? (b) an enormous building in bad condition
(e) What was Wellss opinion of violence? (c) dogs and horses
(f) Whose first book came out in the same year as (d) the River Thames
The Time Machine? (e) small houses
(g) What was Wellss first novel? (f) insects
(h) How old was Wells when he died? (g) birds
2 Complete each item (af) with a word from the Word List (h) shops and factories
on page 78. 2 Which of these words describe the creatures in the new
(a) a newspaper land?
(b) the of a warm bed
(c) a garden beautiful busy easily bored friendly gentle
(d) a of bird healthy lazy intelligent music-loving strong
(e) a sandwich
(f) an oil Chapters 79

ACTIVITIES WHILE READING THE BOOK 1 Put these things in the order that the Time Traveller does
them. Number the sentences 16.
Chapters 13
(a) He saves a girls life.
1 Underline the correct word(s). (b) He is attacked by Morlocks.
(a) Most people usually forget the dimension of length (c) He follows a Morlock.
/ time. (d) He notices a lot of wells.
(b) The Psychologist thinks that a time machine would (e) He is woken up by a strange animal.
be useful for historians / mathematicians. (f) He goes down a well.
(c) Four / Five people watch the Time Travellers 2 Are these sentences about the Morlocks true (T) or
experiment. false (F)?
(d) The guests are doubtful / excited about the Time
Travellers experiment. (a) They move slowly.
(e) The Time Traveller is wearing no shoes / trousers (b) They have white skin.
when he appears one week later. (c) They live underground.
(f) The Time Traveller first knows that his machine is (d) They are lazy.
working when he looks at the clock / his cook. (e) They are blind.
(g) The Time Travellers greatest fear is that his (f) They eat meat.
machine might stop working / crash into something.
(h) When the rain stops, the Time Traveller feels more
confident / frightened.

Pearson Education Limited 2006


Penguin Readers Factsheets

Level 4 Intermediate The Time Machine Photocopiable


Students Activities

Chapters 1012
1 Choose the correct answer.
(a) The Eloi are becoming less
(1) helpless.
(2) powerful.
(3) frightened.
(b) The Time Traveller feels happy in the Green Palace
because
(1) it is safe from the Morlocks.
(2) he finds some matches there.
(3) it is interesting.
(c) Weena
(1) dies in the fire.
(2) gets lost in the forest.
(3) is eaten by the Morlocks.
2 Why does the Time Traveller ...
(a) stop carrying Weena on the way to the Green
Palace?
(b) forget his problems on the hill?
(c) want to leave the Green Palace?
(d) light a fire?
(e) go into the dark forest?
(f) stop killing the Morlocks?

Chapters 1315
What ...
(a) do the Morlocks eat now?
(b) does the Time Traveller do by mistake?
(c) has totally disappeared from the future sky?
(d) creatures are still alive in the future?
(e) colour is the sky of the future?
(f) does the Time Traveller hear at the end of the
world?
(g) does the Medical Man want to keep?
(h) does the Time Traveller take on his last journey?

ACTIVITIES AFTER READING THE BOOK


1 The Time Traveller says, There is no intelligence where
there is no change and no need of change? What does
he mean? Do you agree with him? Why/why not? Work in
pairs and discuss these questions.
2 You are the Time Traveller. What lessons have you learnt
about your journey to the Land of the Eloi? Write about it
for a newspaper.

Pearson Education Limited 2006 Published and distributed by Pearson Longman


Factsheet written by Chris Rice
Factsheet series developed by Louise James
Penguin Readers Answer Key

Level 4 Intermediate The Time Machine


The Time Machine

Answers to Book Activities Answers to Factsheet Activities


1 Open answers Communicative Activities
2 (a) editor, psychologist ACTIVITIES BEFORE READING THE BOOK
(b) dial, lever
12 Open answers
(c) bush, lawn
ACTIVITIES AFTER READING A SECTION
3 time travel is impossible a, c
Chapters 13
4 the Medical Man
Psychologist Open answers
the narrator
5 (a) Chapters 46

69 Open answers (a)(c) Open answers

10 (a) 3 (d) People lose energy, strength and


(b) 9 intelligence when they are too safe. Chapters 46
(c) 4 Chapters 79 1 (a) N
(d) 7 (b) Y
(e) 1 Open answers
(c) N
(f) 2 Chapters 1012 (d) Y
(g) 8 (e) N
(h) 5 (a) Open answers (f) N
(i) 6 (b) Possible answers; He tries to go (g) Y
11 (c) through a dark forest. He puts Weena (h) N
by a tree. He loses his direction in
1215 Open answers the forest. 2 beautiful, easily bored, friendly,
16 (a) T Chapters 1315 gentle, healthy, lazy, music-loving
(b) F
(a) Open answers Chapters 79
(c) T
(d) T (b) Possible answer: Because the 1 (a) 3
(e) F Medical Man doesnt believe his story. (b) 6
(f) T (c) Possible answers: Some kind of (c) 4
(g) T strange creature. His imagination. (d) 2
(d) Possible answer: Sad, because (e) 1
17 (a) 5 everything will end in failure. Humans (f) 5
(b) 6 will disappear.
(c) 2 (e) Open answers 2 (a) F
(d) 1 (b) T
(e) 4 (c) T
(f) 3 ACTIVITIES AFTER READING THE BOOK (d) F
13 Open answers (e) F (They can see in the dark.)
1821 Open answers
(f) T
22 candles, guns, machines, matches, Students activities
Chapters 1012
animal bones, books, glass cases,
rocks, glass balls ACTIVITIES BEFORE READING THE BOOK 1 (a) powerful
1 (a) to the year 802,701 (b) he finds some matches there
23 (b), (c)
(b) a box of matches (c) dies in the fire
2425 Open answers (c) People moved from the country to 2 (a) Weena wants to pick some
26 (a) 8 work in the cities. flowers.
(b) 8 (d) He believed that science could (b) His problems seem small when
(c) 4 improve peoples lives and make he compares them to the stars.
(d) 8 a better, fairer kind of society. (c) It is not safe from the Morlocks.
(e) 8 (e) He believed in world peace, but (d) To surprise the Morlocks who
(f) 8 he also believed that wars and were following him.
(g) 4 fighting made men stronger. (e) He wants to reach the open
(h) 8 (f) Sigmund Freud hillside on the other side.
(i) 4 (g) The Time Machine (f) He understands their total
(j) 8 (h) 80 helplessness and pain in the fire.
(k) 8
Chapters 1315
(l) 8 2 (a) editor (b) comfort (c) lawn
(d) species (e) crab (f) well 1 (a) the Eloi
27 (b) (d) (e) (g)
(b) He pulls the levers forwards
2838 Open answers ACTIVITIES WHILE READING THE BOOK instead of backwards.
(c) the moon
Chapters 13 (d) giant crabs on the beach,
1 (a) time enormous insect-like creatures in
(b) historians the sky
(c) five (e) red
(d) doubtful (f) wind, silence (nothing)
(e) shoes (g) the dead white flowers
(f) the clock (h) a small camera and a bag
(g) crash into something
(h) frightened ACTIVITIES AFTER READING THE BOOK
2 cheerful 12 Open answers

Pearson Education Limited 2006 Published and distributed by Pearson Longman


Factsheet written by Chris Rice
Factsheet series developed by Louise James