The Reading / Listening - Microplastics - Level 3

People who eat seafood may be also eating tiny pieces of plastic. The small pieces of plastic are called microplastics. They are tiny pieces of plastic from the waste and garbage that are in the seas and oceans. They are usually less than a millimeter wide. They are becoming more and more common in seafood such as oysters and mussels as well as other kinds of shellfish. Scientists say there are more than five trillion pieces of microplastic in our oceans. More and more are being added every day. Professor Richard Thompson, a marine biologist at Exeter University, said: "Hundreds of marine organisms encounter plastic at the sea surface or in the water…and many of those encounters are harmful if not fatal."



Researchers from the University of Ghent in Belgium conducted a study into microplastics and marine life. They believe people eat up to 11,000 pieces of plastic in their food each year. The researchers said that only around 60 of these pieces stay in our body and the rest will disappear down the toilet. Sixty pieces of microplastic may not seem a lot but it will build up over time. They could eventually be bad for our health. Things are likely to get worse. The researchers added that by the end of the century, seafood eaters could consume as many as 780,000 pieces of plastic a year. That is likely to cause many health problems. Scientists say we need to recycle more and find alternatives to plastic.

Try the same news story at these easier levels:

    Microplastics - Level 0 Microplastics - Level 1   or  Microplastics - Level 2

Sources
  • http://news.sky.com/story/microplastics-in-seafood-could-be-a-health-risk-experts-fear-10739835
  • http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/why-recycle-plastic-rubbish-oceans-8-million-tonnes-pollution-microplastics-a7541476.html
  • http://www.cambridgenetwork.co.uk/news/study-shows-wider-impact-of-microplastics/


Make sure you try all of the online activities for this reading and listening - There are dictations, multiple choice, drag and drop activities, crosswords, hangman, flash cards, matching activities and a whole lot more. Please enjoy :-)



Warm-ups

1. SEAFOOD: Students walk around the class and talk to other students about seafood. Change partners often and share your findings.

2. CHAT: In pairs / groups, talk about these topics or words from the article. What will the article say about them? What can you say about these words and your life?

       seafood / plastic / waste / garbage / oceans / oysters / scientists / marine / biologist /
       study / researchers / health / disappear / century / problems / recycle / alternatives

Have a chat about the topics you liked. Change topics and partners frequently.

3. OCEANS & SEAS: Students A strongly believe we should heavily fine nations whose seas are full of plastic waste; Students B strongly believe this would not work.  Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

4. ALTERNATIVES: What could we use for these things instead of plastic? How much better would the alternatives be? Complete this table with your partner(s). Change partners often and share what you wrote.

 

Alternatives

How much better

Pens

 

 

Shopping bags

 

 

Drink bottles

 

 

Plates

 

 

Containers

 

 

Car dashboards

 

 

MY e-BOOK
See a sample

5. TINY: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word "tiny". Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.

6. RECYCLE: Rank these with your partner. Put the most important things to recycle at the top. Change partners often and share your rankings.

  • cars
  • clothes
  • mobile phones
  • cups and plates
  • plastic bottles
  • books
  • computers
  • furniture

 

Before reading / listening

1. TRUE / FALSE: Read the headline. Guess if a-h below are true (T) or false (F).

  1. The article says shellfish love eating tiny pieces of plastic.     T / F
  2. Microplastics are all less than 0.1mm wide.     T / F
  3. Microplastics are becoming more common in oysters and mussels.     T / F
  4. A marine biologist said microplastics do not harm of kill sea life.     T / F
  5. The research was conducted by a university in Malaysia.     T / F
  6. Researchers say people eat up to 11,000 pieces of microplastic a year.    T / F
  7. By 2099, seafood eaters could be eating 780,000 bits of plastic a year.    T / F
  8. Scientists say we need to find alternatives to plastic.     T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article.

  1. tiny
  2. pieces
  3. garbage
  4. such as
  5. encounter
  6. conducted
  7. rest
  8. eventually
  9. consume
  10. alternatives
  1. remainder
  2. trash
  3. eat
  4. come across
  5. minute
  6. substitutes
  7. did
  8. bits
  9. in the end
  10. like

3. PHRASE MATCH: (Sometimes more than one choice is possible.)

  1. waste and
  2. more and more common in seafood
  3. More and more are being
  4. at the sea surface or
  5. many of those encounters are harmful
  6. the rest will disappear down
  7. Things are likely
  8. by the end
  9. likely to cause
  10. recycle more and find alternatives
  1. of the century
  2. if not fatal
  3. to get worse
  4. to plastic
  5. garbage
  6. added every day
  7. many health problems
  8. in the water
  9. the toilet
  10. such as oysters

Gap fill

Put these words into the spaces in the paragraph below.
common
may
added
oceans
fatal
called
trillion
marine

People who eat seafood (1) ____________ be also eating tiny pieces of plastic. The small pieces of plastic are (2) ____________ microplastics. They are tiny pieces of plastic from the waste and garbage that are in the seas and (3) ____________. They are usually less than a millimeter wide. They are becoming more and more (4) ____________ in seafood such as oysters and mussels as well as other kinds of shellfish. Scientists say there are more than five (5) ____________ pieces of microplastic in our oceans. More and more are being (6) ____________ every day. Professor Richard Thompson, a (7) ____________ biologist at Exeter University, said: "Hundreds of marine organisms encounter plastic at the sea surface or in the water…and many of those encounters are harmful if not (8) ____________."

Put these words into the spaces in the paragraph below.
eventually
each
rest
alternatives
conducted
likely
around
century

Researchers from the University of Ghent in Belgium (9) ____________ a study into microplastics and marine life. They believe people eat up to 11,000 pieces of plastic in their food (10) ____________ year. The researchers said that only (11) ____________ 60 of these pieces stay in our body and the (12) ____________ will disappear down the toilet. Sixty pieces of microplastic may not seem a lot but it will build up over time. They could (13) ____________ be bad for our health. Things are likely to get worse. The researchers added that by the end of the (14) ____________, seafood eaters could consume as many as 780,000 pieces of plastic a year. That is (15) ____________ to cause many health problems. Scientists say we need to recycle more and find (16) ____________ to plastic.

Listening — Guess the answers. Listen to check.

1)  People who eat seafood may be also eating ______ plastic
     a.  tinny pieces of
     b.  tiny pieces of
     c.  tiny piece is of
     d.  tinny piece is of

2)  They are tiny pieces of plastic from the waste ______
     a.  end garbage
     b.  ant garbage
     c.  add garbage
     d.  and garbage

3)  more common in seafood such as oysters and mussels as well as other ______
     a.  kinds of shelled fish
     b.  kinds off shellfish
     c.  kinds of shellfish
     d.  kins off shellfish

4) Exeter University, said: "Hundreds of marine organisms encounter plastic ______"
     a.  in the sea surface
     b.  to the sea surface
     c.  at the sea surface
     d.  not the sea surface

5)  many of those encounters are harmful ______
     a.  if not fatal
     b.  if not vital
     c.  if not ate all
     d.  if not natal

6)  Researchers from the University of Ghent in Belgium ______ study
     a.  constructed a
     b.  conducted a
     c.  con duct it a
     d.  con ducked a

7)  people eat up to 11,000 pieces of plastic in their food ______
     a.  each years
     b.  each yearly
     c.  each ear
     d.  each year

8)  around 60 of these pieces stay in our body and ______ disappear
     a.  the rest will
     b.  the rests will
     c.  the rested will
     d.  the restive will

9)  Sixty pieces of microplastic may not seem a lot but it will ______ time
     a.  build up overly
     b.  build up overs
     c.  build up over
     d.  build up and over

10)  Scientists say we need to recycle more and find ______ plastic
     a.  alternative at
     b.  alternatives to
     c.  alternatively to
     d.  alternatives at

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

People who eat seafood may (1) ___________________ tiny pieces of plastic. The small pieces of plastic are called microplastics. They are tiny pieces of plastic from the waste and garbage (2) ___________________ seas and oceans. They are usually less than a millimeter wide. They are becoming (3) ___________________ common in seafood such as oysters and mussels as (4) ___________________ kinds of shellfish. Scientists say there are more than five trillion pieces of microplastic in our oceans. More and more are (5) ___________________ day. Professor Richard Thompson, a marine biologist at Exeter University, said: "Hundreds of marine organisms encounter plastic at the sea surface (6) ___________________…and many of those encounters are harmful if not fatal."

Researchers from the University of Ghent in Belgium conducted a study into microplastics (7) ___________________. They believe people eat up to 11,000 pieces of plastic in their food each year. The researchers said that only around (8) ___________________ pieces stay in our body and the rest will disappear down the toilet. Sixty pieces of microplastic (9) ___________________ lot but it will build up over time. They could eventually (10) ___________________ health. Things are likely to get worse. The researchers added that by the end of the century, seafood eaters could consume as many as 780,000 pieces of plastic a year. (11) ___________________ cause many health problems. Scientists say we need to recycle more and find (12) ___________________.

Comprehension questions

  1. Who may be eating tiny pieces of plastic?
  2. How wide are microplastics?
  3. What two kinds of seafood did the article mention?
  4. How many pieces of microplastics are in the oceans?
  5. What is Richard Thompson's job?
  6. How much microplastic do people eat every year?
  7. How many pieces of microplastics stay in our body each year?
  8. Where do most microplastics that we eat end up?
  9. When might we eat as many as 780,000 pieces of plastic a year?
  10. What did scientists say we need to find an alternative to?




Multiple choice quiz

1) Who may be eating tiny pieces of plastic?
a) seafood eaters
b) seafood
c) fish
d) everyone

2) How wide are microplastics?
a) 1 cm
b) between 1-2 mm
c) less than a millimeter
d) 0.01 mm

3) What two kinds of seafood did the article mention?
a) crabs and squid
b) mussels and oysters
c) prawns and lobsters
d) tuna and sardines

4) How many pieces of microplastics are in the oceans?
a) five million
b) five quadrillion
c) five billion
d) five trillion

5) What is Richard Thompson's job?
a) marine biologist
b) sushi chef
c) fisherman
d) writer

6) How much microplastic do people eat every year?
a) 11,824 pieces
b) exactly 11,000 pieces
c) just over 11,000 pieces
d) up to 11,000 pieces

7) How many pieces of microplastics stay in our body each year?
a) less than 60
b) around 60
c) 65
d) exactly 60

8) Where do most microplastics that we eat end up?
a) in our blood
b) on a dinner plate
c) in seafood
d) down the toilet

9) When might we eat as many as 780,000 pieces of plastic a year?
a) when there are more fish
b) if climate change stops
c) by 2099
d) next year

10) What did scientists say we need to find an alternative to?
a) recycling
b) plastic
c) shellfish
d) oceans

Role play

Role A — Plastic Bottles

You think plastic bottles are the most important things to recycle. Tell the others three reasons why. Tell them what problems there are with recycling their things. Also, tell the others which of these is the least important to recycle (and why): computers, clothes or cars.

Role B — Computers

You think computers are the most important things to recycle. Tell the others three reasons why. Tell them what problems there are with recycling their things. Also, tell the others which of these is the least important to recycle (and why): plastic bottles, clothes or cars.

Role C — Clothes

You think clothes are the most important things to recycle. Tell the others three reasons why. Tell them what problems there are with recycling their things. Also, tell the others which of these is the least important to recycle (and why): computers, plastic bottles or cars.

Role D — Cars

You think cars are the most important things to recycle. Tell the others three reasons why. Tell them what problems there are with recycling their things. Also, tell the others which of these is the least important to recycle (and why): computers, clothes or plastic bottles.

After reading / listening

1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionary / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words...

'micro'

  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • and 'plastic'.

  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • ________________
  • • Share your findings with your partners.

    • Make questions using the words you found.

    • Ask your partner / group your questions.

    2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

    •Share your questions with other classmates / groups. •Ask your partner / group your questions.

    3. GAP FILL: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the activity. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

    4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

    5. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall how they were used in the text:

    • study
    • 11,000
    • 60
    • lot
    • worse
    • find
    • eating
    • waste
    • usually
    • well
    • added
    • harmful




    Student survey

    Write five GOOD questions about this topic in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper. When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

    (Please look at page 12 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

    Discussion - Worries about microplastics in our seafood

    STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

    1. What did you think when you read the headline?
    2. What images are in your mind when you hear the word 'plastic'?
    3. What do you think about what you read?
    4. What seafood is the best, and why?
    5. How can we clean all plastic from the oceans?
    6. What can we use instead of plastic?
    7. What do you think of seafood?
    8. Do you worry about what you eat?
    9. Should shops stop selling seafood if it has microplastics?
    10. What do you do to recycle plastic?

    STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

    1. Did you like reading this article? Why/not?
    2. What do you think of when you hear the word 'seafood'?
    3. What does a marine biologist do every day?
    4. What are microplastics?
    5. Is eating seafood riskier than eating meat?
    6. What do you think of oysters?
    7. Whose responsibility is it to protect our oceans?
    8. How can we keep our food safe?
    9. What health problems do you think microplastics could cause?
    10. What questions would you like to ask the scientists?

    Discussion — Write your own questions

    STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

    (a) ________________

    (b) ________________

    (c) ________________

    (d) ________________

    (e) ________________

    STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

    (f) ________________

    (g) ________________

    (h) ________________

    (i) ________________

    (j) ________________





    Language — Cloze (Gap-fill)

    People who eat seafood may be (1) ____ eating tiny pieces of plastic. The small pieces of plastic are called microplastics. They are tiny pieces of plastic from the (2) ____ and garbage that are in the seas and oceans. They are usually less than a millimeter (3) ____. They are becoming more and more common in seafood such as oysters and mussels as well as other (4) ____ of shellfish. Scientists say there are more than five trillion pieces of microplastic in our oceans. More and more are (5) ____ added every day. Professor Richard Thompson, a marine biologist at Exeter University, said: "Hundreds of marine organisms encounter plastic at the sea surface or in the water…and many of those encounters are harmful if not (6) ____."

    Researchers from the University of Ghent in Belgium conducted a study into microplastics and marine life. They believe people eat (7) ____ to 11,000 pieces of plastic in their food each year. The researchers said that only around 60 of (8) ____ pieces stay in our body and the rest will disappear down the toilet. Sixty pieces of microplastic may not seem a lot but it will build (9) ____ over time. They could eventually be bad for our health. Things are (10) ____ to get worse. The researchers added that by the end of the century, seafood eaters could (11) ____ as many as 780,000 pieces of plastic a year. That is likely to cause many health problems. Scientists say we need to recycle more and find (12) ____ to plastic.

    Which of these words go in the above text?

    1. (a)     addition     (b)     also     (c)     plus     (d)     extra    
    2. (a)     paste     (b)     waste     (c)     baste     (d)     caste    
    3. (a)     wider     (b)     widen     (c)     width     (d)     wide    
    4. (a)     type     (b)     kinds     (c)     sort     (d)     means    
    5. (a)     are     (b)     is     (c)     been     (d)     being    
    6. (a)     fatally     (b)     fatalistic     (c)     fatal     (d)     fatale    
    7. (a)     up     (b)     along     (c)     down     (d)     over    
    8. (a)     they     (b)     them     (c)     these     (d)     that    
    9. (a)     to     (b)     over     (c)     in     (d)     up    
    10. (a)     likely     (b)     likelihood     (c)     liking     (d)     liken    
    11. (a)     consume     (b)     resume     (c)     presume     (d)     assume    
    12. (a)     alternatives     (b)     alternates     (c)     alternators     (d)     alters

    Spelling

    Paragraph 1

    1. tiny eiespc of plastic
    2. from the waste and aebagrg
    3. becoming more and more mconom
    4. in our eaonsc
    5. a mnraei biologist
    6. harmful if not lataf

    Paragraph 2

    1. cdtnuocde a study
    2. adpiserap down the toilet
    3. They could nyetlvlaeu be bad
    4. by the end of the cetyrun
    5. we need to ereccyl more
    6. find naraetvetlis to plastic

    Put the text back together

    (    )     the sea surface or in the water…and many of those encounters are harmful if not fatal."

    1  )     People who eat seafood may be also eating tiny pieces of plastic. The small pieces of plastic are called

    (    )     bad for our health. Things are likely to get worse. The researchers added that by the end of the

    (    )     trillion pieces of microplastic in our oceans. More and more are being added every day. Professor Richard Thompson, a marine

    (    )     biologist at Exeter University, said: "Hundreds of marine organisms encounter plastic at

    (    )     as oysters and mussels as well as other kinds of shellfish. Scientists say there are more than five

    (    )     year. The researchers said that only around 60 of these pieces stay in our body and the rest will disappear

    (    )     cause many health problems. Scientists say we need to recycle more and find alternatives to plastic.

    (    )     century, seafood eaters could consume as many as 780,000 pieces of plastic a year. That is likely to

    (    )     life. They believe people eat up to 11,000 pieces of plastic in their food each

    (    )     Researchers from the University of Ghent in Belgium conducted a study into microplastics and marine

    (    )     down the toilet. Sixty pieces of microplastic may not seem a lot but it will build up over time. They could eventually be

    (    )     oceans. They are usually less than a millimeter wide. They are becoming more and more common in seafood such

    (    )     microplastics. They are tiny pieces of plastic from the waste and garbage that are in the seas and

    Put the words in the right order

    1. are   plastic   of   pieces   small   The   microplastics   called   .
    2. of   They   plastic   are   from   tiny   the   pieces   waste   .
    3. More   seafood   and   such   more   as   common   oysters   in   .
    4. of   than   microplastic   five   There   trillion   are   pieces   more   .
    5. are   encounters   those   of   Many   harmful   .
    6. They   plastic   of   pieces   11,000   to   up   eat   people   believe   .
    7. of   stay   body   60   pieces   our   around   these   in   Only   .
    8. be   eventually   could   They   health   our   for   bad   .
    9. many   cause   to   likely   is   That   problems   health   .
    10. plastic   more   find   to   Recycle   and   alternatives   .

    Circle the correct word (20 pairs)

    People who eat seafood may be / been also eating tiny pieces of plastic. The small pieces of plastic are called microplastics. They are tinny / tiny pieces of plastic from the waste / wastage and garbage that are in the seas and oceans. They are usually less than a millimeter wide. They are becoming more and many / more common in seafood such as oysters and mussels as well as other / another kinds of shellfish. Scientists say there are more than five trillion pieces of microplastic in our oceans. More and more are been / being added every day. Professor Richard Thompson, a marine biology / biologist at Exeter University, said: "Hundreds of marine organisms encounter / counter plastic at the sea surface or in the water…and many of those encounters are harmed / harmful if not fatal / fatally."

    Researchers from the University of Ghent in Belgium conducted a studying / study into microplastics and marine life. They belief / believe people eat up to 11,000 pieces of / off plastic in their food each year. The researchers said that only around 60 of these pieces stay in / on our body and the rest will disappear up / down the toilet. Sixty pieces of microplastic may not seem / seems a lot but it will build up over time. They could eventual / eventually be bad for our health. Things are likely / liken to get worse. The researchers added that by the end of the century, seafood eaters could resume / consume as many as 780,000 pieces of plastic a year. That is likely to cause many health problems. Scientists say we need to recycle / cycle more and find alternatives to plastic.

    Talk about the connection between each pair of words in italics, and why the correct word is correct.

    Insert the vowels (a, e, i, o, u)

    P__pl_ wh_ __t s__f__d m_y b_ _ls_ __t_ng t_ny p__c_s _f pl_st_c. Th_ sm_ll p__c_s _f pl_st_c _r_ c_ll_d m_cr_pl_st_cs. Th_y _r_ t_ny p__c_s _f pl_st_c fr_m th_ w_st_ _nd g_rb_g_ th_t _r_ _n th_ s__s _nd _c__ns. Th_y _r_ _s__lly l_ss th_n _ m_ll_m_t_r w_d_. Th_y _r_ b_c_m_ng m_r_ _nd m_r_ c_mm_n _n s__f__d s_ch _s _yst_rs _nd m_ss_ls _s w_ll _s _th_r k_nds _f sh_llf_sh. Sc__nt_sts s_y th_r_ _r_ m_r_ th_n f_v_ tr_ll__n p__c_s _f m_cr_pl_st_c _n __r _c__ns. M_r_ _nd m_r_ _r_ b__ng _dd_d _v_ry d_y. Pr_f_ss_r R_ch_rd Th_mps_n, _ m_r_n_ b__l_g_st _t _x_t_r _n_v_rs_ty, s__d: "H_ndr_ds _f m_r_n_ _rg_n_sms _nc__nt_r pl_st_c _t th_ s__ s_rf_c_ _r _n th_ w_t_r…_nd m_ny _f th_s_ _nc__nt_rs _r_ h_rmf_l _f n_t f_t_l."

    R_s__rch_rs fr_m th_ _n_v_rs_ty _f Gh_nt _n B_lg__m c_nd_ct_d _ st_dy _nt_ m_cr_pl_st_cs _nd m_r_n_ l_f_. Th_y b_l__v_ p__pl_ __t _p t_ 11,000 p__c_s _f pl_st_c _n th__r f__d __ch y__r. Th_ r_s__rch_rs s__d th_t _nly _r__nd 60 _f th_s_ p__c_s st_y _n __r b_dy _nd th_ r_st w_ll d_s_pp__r d_wn th_ t__l_t. S_xty p__c_s _f m_cr_pl_st_c m_y n_t s__m _ l_t b_t _t w_ll b__ld _p _v_r t_m_. Th_y c__ld _v_nt__lly b_ b_d f_r __r h__lth. Th_ngs _r_ l_k_ly t_ g_t w_rs_. Th_ r_s__rch_rs _dd_d th_t by th_ _nd _f th_ c_nt_ry, s__f__d __t_rs c__ld c_ns_m_ _s m_ny _s 780,000 p__c_s _f pl_st_c _ y__r. Th_t _s l_k_ly t_ c__s_ m_ny h__lth pr_bl_ms. Sc__nt_sts s_y w_ n__d t_ r_cycl_ m_r_ _nd f_nd _lt_rn_t_v_s t_ pl_st_c.

    Punctuate the text and add capitals

    people who eat seafood may be also eating tiny pieces of plastic the small pieces of plastic are called microplastics they are tiny pieces of plastic from the waste and garbage that are in the seas and oceans they are usually less than a millimeter wide they are becoming more and more common in seafood such as oysters and mussels as well as other kinds of shellfish scientists say there are more than five trillion pieces of microplastic in our oceans more and more are being added every day professor richard thompson a marine biologist at exeter university said "hundreds of marine organisms encounter plastic at the sea surface or in the water…and many of those encounters are harmful if not fatal"

    researchers from the university of ghent in belgium conducted a study into microplastics and marine life they believe people eat up to 11000 pieces of plastic in their food each year the researchers said that only around 60 of these pieces stay in our body and the rest will disappear down the toilet sixty pieces of microplastic may not seem a lot but it will build up over time they could eventually be bad for our health things are likely to get worse the researchers added that by the end of the century seafood eaters could consume as many as 780000 pieces of plastic a year that is likely to cause many health problems scientists say we need to recycle more and find alternatives to plastic

    Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

    Peoplewhoeatseafoodmaybealsoeatingtinypiecesofplastic.Thesmall
    piecesofplasticarecalledmicroplastics.Theyaretinypiecesofplasticfro
    mthewasteandgarbagethatareintheseasandoceans.Theyareusually
    lessthanamillimeterwide.Theyarebecomingmoreandmorecommoni
    nseafoodsuchasoystersandmusselsaswellasotherkindsofshellfish.S
    cientistssaytherearemorethanfivetrillionpiecesofmicroplasticinouro
    ceans.Moreandmorearebeingaddedeveryday.ProfessorRichardTho
    mpson,amarinebiologistatExeterUniversity,said:"Hundredsofmarin
    eorganismsencounterplasticattheseasurfaceorinthewater…andman
    yofthoseencountersareharmfulifnotfatal."ResearchersfromtheUniv
    ersityofGhentinBelgiumconductedastudyintomicroplasticsandmari
    nelife.Theybelievepeopleeatupto11,000piecesofplasticintheirfoode
    achyear.Theresearcherssaidthatonlyaround60ofthesepiecesstayin
    ourbodyandtherestwilldisappeardownthetoilet.Sixtypiecesofmicrop
    lasticmaynotseemalotbutitwillbuildupovertime.Theycouldeventuall
    ybebadforourhealth.Thingsarelikelytogetworse.Theresearchersadd
    edthatbytheendofthecentury,seafoodeaterscouldconsumeasmanya
    s780,000piecesofplasticayear.Thatislikelytocausemanyhealthprobl
    ems.Scientistssayweneedtorecyclemoreandfindalternativestoplasti
    c.

    Free writing

    Write about microplastics for 10 minutes. Comment on your partner’s paper.

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    Academic writing

    We should stop using plastic immediately. Do you agree? What could we use instead?

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    Homework

    1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

    2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find out more about this news. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

    3. MICROPLASTICS: Make a poster about microplastics. Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

    4. PLASTIC: Write a magazine article about ending the use of plastic. How would it affect our life? Include imaginary interviews with people who are for and against it.

    Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down any new words and expressions you hear from your partner(s).

    5. WHAT HAPPENED NEXT? Write a newspaper article about the next stage in this news story. Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Give each other feedback on your articles.

    6. LETTER: Write a letter to an expert on microplastics. Ask him/her three questions about them. Give him/her three of your ideas on how we could live without using plastic. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

    Answers

    (Please look at page 26 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

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