The Reading / Listening - Life on Mars - Level 2

Scientists have found new things about the environment on Mars. They found a "toxic cocktail" of chemicals that would kill any living thing. The chemicals are on the surface of the Red Planet. The scientists say the discovery of the chemicals means the chance of finding life on Mars is lower. The scientists are astrobiologists – they study the places in the universe that might support life. Mars has no ozone layer, which means there are high levels of ultra-violet (UV) radiation. The mix of UV radiation and the chemicals means it might be possible for anything to grow on Mars.



The scientists tested what happens when the chemicals mix with UV rays. They found that just the chemicals were enough to kill living things. When the chemicals mix with UV rays, the mix kills living things 11 times faster. The scientists said: "Our [findings] show that the surface of…Mars is highly [harmful] to cells, caused by a toxic cocktail of [chemicals] and UV radiation." They say their research is evidence that the land on Mars is deadly to any kind of plant life. They say the chemicals and UV rays make, "much of the surface and near-surface regions uninhabitable".

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Life on Mars - Level 0 Life on Mars - Level 1   or  Life on Mars - Level 3

Sources
  • http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/mars-toxic-chemicals-found-surface-life-organisims-less-likely-planet-ozone-layer-ultra-violet-a7828361.html
  • http://time.com/4845251/mars-life-toxins-microbes/
  • http://www.ed.ac.uk/news/2017/surface-of-mars-poses-danger-to-life-tests-show


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 :-)



Phrase Matching

Paragraph 1

  1. Scientists have found new
  2. the environment
  3. They found a toxic
  4. the chance
  5. places in the universe that
  6. there are high levels of ultra-
  7. The mix of UV radiation
  8. it might be possible
  1. violet (UV) radiation
  2. and the chemicals
  3. on Mars
  4. for anything to grow
  5. of finding life on Mars
  6. things
  7. might support life
  8. cocktail of chemicals

Paragraph 2

  1. The scientists tested what
  2. the chemicals mix
  3. just the chemicals were
  4. 11 times
  5. the surface of Mars is highly
  6. evidence that the land
  7. plant
  8. the surface and near-
  1. on Mars is deadly
  2. enough to kill
  3. harmful
  4. surface regions
  5. happens
  6. life
  7. with UV rays
  8. faster

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

Scientists have found (1) ___________________ the environment on Mars. They (2) ___________________ cocktail" of chemicals that would kill any living thing. The chemicals are on the surface of the Red Planet. The scientists say (3) ___________________ the chemicals means the chance of finding life on Mars is lower. The scientists are astrobiologists – they study (4) __________________ universe that might support life. Mars has no ozone layer, which means (5) ___________________ levels of ultra-violet (UV) radiation. The mix of UV radiation and the chemicals means it might be possible (6) ___________________ grow on Mars.

The scientists tested what happens when (7) __________________ with UV rays. They found that just the chemicals (8) ___________________ kill living things. When the chemicals mix with UV rays, the mix kills living things (9) ___________________. The scientists said: "Our [findings] show that the surface of…Mars is highly [harmful] to cells, (10) ___________________ cocktail of [chemicals] and UV radiation." They say their research is evidence that the land on Mars is (11) ___________________ kind of plant life. They say the chemicals and UV rays make, "(12) ___________________ and near-surface regions uninhabitable".

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

ScientistshavefoundnewthingsabouttheenvironmentonMars.Theyf
ounda"toxiccocktail"ofchemicalsthatwouldkillanylivingthing.Thech
emicalsareonthesurfaceoftheRedPlanet.Thescientistssaythediscove
ryofthechemicalsmeansthechanceoffindinglifeonMarsislower.Thesc
ientistsareastrobiologists–theystudytheplacesintheuniversethatm
ightsupportlife.Marshasnoozonelayer,whichmeanstherearehighlev
elsofultra-violet(UV)radiation.ThemixofUVradiationandthechemic
alsmeansitmightbepossibleforanythingtogrowonMars.Thescientists
testedwhathappenswhenthechemicalsmixwithUVrays.Theyfoundth
atjustthechemicalswereenoughtokilllivingthings.Whenthechemical
smixwithUVrays,themixkillslivingthings11timesfaster.Thescientists
said:"Our[findings]showthatthesurfaceof…Marsishighly[harmful]to
cells,causedbyatoxiccocktailof[chemicals]andUVradiation."Theysa
ytheirresearchisevidencethatthelandonMarsisdeadlytoanykindofpla
ntlife.TheysaythechemicalsandUVraysmake,"muchofthesurfaceand
near-surfaceregionsuninhabitable".

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 — Write your own questions

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

(a) ________________

(b) ________________

(c) ________________

(d) ________________

(e) ________________

(f) ________________

(g) ________________

(h) ________________

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

(i) ________________

(j) ________________

(k) ________________

(l) ________________

(m) ________________

(n) ________________

(o) ________________

(p) ________________





Free writing

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

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Answers

(Please check your answers against the article above.

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