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Устная практика- задания (Меркулова) / World around us / CLIMATE, WEATHER, SEASONS – STUDENT’S BOOK UNITS 4-6.docx
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Climate, weather, seasons – student’s book units 4-6

  • Unit 4 - Climate and weather in Great Britain and the USA

  • Unit 5 – Seasons

  • Unit 6 - Weather forecasts

Unit 4: climate and weather in great britain

TASK 23. Fill in the gaps with the words and expressions from the box. Options are possible. Be ready to translate the text into your mother tongue.

North Atlantic

sweeps along


raise the temperature



local variations






air masses






British Isles


spreads out

mountainous areas


warm waters

Britain has a generally ________ (1), temperate climate. It is often somewhat incorrectly said that the British Isles are washed by the ________ (2) of the Gulf Stream. The Gulf Stream after emerging from the Gulf of Mexico, ________ (3) the shores of Florida and is truly a stream of ________ (4) water a few miles wide. But this water gradually ________ (5) and drifts towards the north-east across the ________ (6) Ocean, being helped by the prevailing south-west ________ (7). The water would not feel warm to anyone attempting to ________ (8) in them even in the summer, and it is not really the water which keeps the climate of the British Isles ________ (9) mild. The water, on its way across the Atlantic Ocean, helps to ________ (10) of the winter winds blowing over it, and it is the warmed south-west winds which keep the winter climate mild as well as ________ (11). In summer the effect of the ocean waters and the winds is to ________ (12) the climate from becoming very warm.

As a result of the constant influence of different ________ (13), the weather tends to be very changeable. There are few ________ (14) in temperature, which rarely goes above 32°С or below 10°C. As much of the weather of the ________ (15) is due to the Atlantic influences, the west is ________ (16) than the east. In summer, southern Britain is warmer than northern Britain because of its (17), but in winter the North Atlantic Drift keeps the west milder than the east. Consequently, Wales and the south-west (18) have the most moderate climate and eastern England the most extreme. These ________ (19) are not great, however, and ________ (20) arising from factors such as altitude and ________ (21) are often greater.

Annual ________ (22) is fairly evenly distributed, but ranges from more than 1,600 mm in the ________ (23) of the west and north to less than 800 mm over central and eastern parts. This is because depressions from the Atlantic ________ (24) frontal rainfall first to the west and because western Britain is higher and so gets more relief rain.

TASK 24. Complete each sentence by choosing the best alternative from the words given in bold.

  1. When we came out of the house, we saw flakes/drops/hail/drifts of snow falling slowly to the ground.

  2. We had to drive very slowly because the visibility/fog/mist/haze was so thick.

  3. The heavy rain that had been pouring for days caused drought/flooding/ice-slicks/tides all over the country.

  4. The tree fell to the ground after lightning struck/beat/hurt/broke it.

  5. Those fluffy/leaden/light clouds in the sky mean it's going to rain.

  6. There is a pleasant gale/breeze/gust/blow which I am sure will dry my washing in no time.

  7. The travellers could hear the thunder grumbling/ rumbling/pealing/rolling in the distance.

  8. The whirlwind/breeze/twister/gale had been raging all night, scattering the boats around.

  9. If we set off at dusk/sunset/twilight/dawn, we’ll still have the whole day ahead of us to get to our destination.

  10. Snowdrifts/Icicles/Ice-floes/Snowflakes were suspended from the roof gutters like daggers, gleaming in the light from ancient lanterns attached to the walls.

  11. Rain and frost/hoarfrost/hail/ slush bounced on the tiled roof with such venom that Tom and Willie were quite deafened.

  12. If the air becomes too wet/cold/humid/stifling, fungus may germinate in their stores of dried vegetable food and ruin the crop.

  13. Prolonged frost will drive these birds on to the sea, but many return inland immediately there is a melt/mud/thaw.

TASK 25. Explain the differences between the weather phenomena given below.

        1. haze – mist – fog

        2. breeze – gale – hurricane

        3. mud – slush - sleet

        4. shade – shadow

        5. dusk – twilight

        6. climate – weather

        7. wet - damp – humid

        8. thunderstorm - sandstorm

        9. hail – frost - hoarfrost

        10. a crash of thunder – a rumble of thunder

        11. a thunderbolt – a flash of lightning

        12. a weather forecast - a weather report

        13. twilight - dawn

        14. high summer – Indian summer

        15. cool – chilly – cold

        16. scorching – stifling

        17. a snowdrift – a snowdrift

        18. drift ice – ice floes

        19. an icicle - a snowflake

        20. to thaw – to melt

        21. to rain – to pour – to drizzle

        22. a hurricane – a typhoon – a tornado – a cyclone

        1. TASK 26. Speaking about the weather.

        2. Step 1. Read what the famous Hungarian humourist George Mikes wrote about the English weather. Be ready to translate the text into your mother tongue.

        3. The weather is the most important topic in the land. Do not be misled by memories of your youth when, on the continent, wanting to describe someone as exceptionally dull, you remarked: “He is the type who would discuss the weather with you.” In England this is an ever-interesting, even thrilling topic, and you must be good at discussing the weather.’

        4. You must never contradict anybody when discussing the weather. Should it hail or snow, should hurricanes uproot the trees from the sides of the road, and should someone remark to you: “Nice day, isn’t it?” — answer without hesitation: “Isn’t it lovely?”

        5. Learn the above conversation by heart. If you are a bit slow in picking things up, learn at least one conversation, it would do wonderfully for any occasion.

        6. If you do not say anything else for the rest of your life, just repeat this conversation: you still have a fair chance of passing as a remarkably witty man of sharp intellect, keen observation and extremely pleasant manners.

        7. (from “How to be an Alien” by George Mikes)

        8. Step 2. React to the remarks about the weather given below. Follow the example.

        9. Example 1: What a fine (nice, charming) day! – Lovely, isn’t it?

        10. Example 2: What a clap of thunder! – I hope the thunderstorm will not be very long!

  1. Look, not a cloud in the sky. - _______________

  2. I hope it will keep fine. - _______________

  3. The weather is improving, I should say. - _______________

  4. I hope it will clear up in the afternoon. - _______________

  5. We’re really having a spell of fine weather. - _______________

  6. I can smell the spring in the air! - _______________

  7. Isn’t it hot today? I think we are in for a dry summer. - _______________

  8. It’s terribly close tonight. - _______________

  9. There hasn’t been a single drop of rain during the last month! - _______________

  10. What a flash of lightning! - _______________

  11. That was a terrible thunderstorm, wasn’t it? - _______________

  12. Isn’t it windy today? - _______________

  13. What dreadful weather we’re having. - _______________

  14. Isn’t it a bit dull today? - _______________

  15. What a foggy day! - _______________

  16. Quite chilly this morning, isn’t it? - _______________

  17. Rainy weather has set in. - _______________

  18. It’s raining steadily. - _______________

  19. It’s a good thing we are indoors. - _______________

  20. We haven’t had such a heavy fall of snow for years, have we? - _______________

  21. It’s freezing hard. - _______________

        1. TASK 27. Watch and listen to the video clip on the site http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H40_t-ysQ7E and answer the questions below.

  1. Finish the sentence, ‘Someone once said that it wasn’t for the weather, …

  2. How do you understand the phrase, ‘Don’t knock the weather’?

  3. Do you agree with Oscar Wilde that ‘Conversation about the weather is the last refuge of the unimaginative’?

  4. How do many conversations begin according to the clip?

  5. What artist’s picture illustrates a sunny morning?

  6. What do people say with fingers crossed? Why do they cross fingers?

  7. When do people say, ‘It’s raining cats and dogs.’ What is the origin of this phrase?

  8. What ironic statement meaning the opposite do the English use when it’s raining cats and dogs?

  9. What is the meaning of the idiom ‘come rain or shine’, according to the clip?

  10. What happens when you get wet when it’s chilly?

  11. How does the picture in the clip show that smb is under the weather?

  12. How can ‘a toddy’ help you if you are not well?

  13. What do the old adage say when it’s going to rain?

  14. What does the adage ‘Red sky in the morning, shepherd’s warning,’ mean?

  15. What do you trust more: the old sayings or in the barometer?

  16. How do you understand Ambrose Bierce’s definition of the barometer, ‘A barometer is an ingenious instrument which indicates what kind of weather we are having’?

  17. According to the clip, what are meteorologists supposed to do?

  18. According to the clip, what do meteorologists do?

  19. According to the clip, what do meteorologists do through their television forecasts?

  20. According to the clip, what is a more accurate indication of the coming weather than a forecast?

  21. What do some people think about climate change, according to the clip?

  22. According to the clip, what do scientists predict?

  23. What does the idiom ‘this puts the wind up me’ mean?

  24. How can you explain the sentence ‘Let’s just hope humanity can weather the storm’?

  25. What traditional English rhyme sums up the video clip?

        1. TASK 28. Describe the weather conditions that could have caused the following situations. Follow the example and try not to repeat the weather words descriptions.

        2. Example: The sweat was pouring out of us. – It was a very hot summer day. The heat was scorching.

  1. The cars on the road were skidding out of control.

  2. Even the postman had to use a boat to get around.

  3. We had to sit in the shade every afternoon.

  4. They had to close the airport; the snow was a metre deep.

  5. I can hardly breathe; I wish it would rain to cool us down.

  6. We were able to sit in the garden in the middle of winter.

  7. The earth became rock-hard and a lot of plants died.

  8. It blew the newspaper clean out of my hands.

  9. A row of big trees had been uprooted like matchsticks.

  10. I could hardly see my hands in front of my face.

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