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Listening Comprehension Text “Geography”

Part A. Pre-listening Activities

Task 1. Make sure that you know the following words and phrases.

descriptive – описательный

to list facts – составлять список фактов

landmark – веха

to evolve – развиваться

to cause a great stir – вызвать (произвести) сенсацию; возбудить общий интерес

to be content – довольствоваться (чем-либо)

inquisitiveness – любознательность

Task 2. Before listening answer the following questions.

    1. What do you know about the origin of the word geography?

    2. What kind of science was geography in earlier times?

    3. What kind of science has it become now?

    4. Who made great contribution to the development of natural sciences and geography in particular?

Part B. Listening activities

Task 1. As you listen to the tape make brief notes to help you answer the questions asked before.

Task 2. Listen to the tape recording once more and complete the sentences.

  1. The simplest definition of geography is … .

  2. Early geography was concerned mainly with … .

  3. One of the most important landmarks in the history of geography is …

  4. Ch. Darwin suggested that … .

  5. This idea set people … .

  6. Geographers began to think of the … .

  7. Modern geography not only describes the surface of the earth, it also … .

Part C. After listening activities

Task 1. Discuss in pairs the information you’ve just listened to.

Task 2. Summarize the information about geography in earlier times and the changes that the science of geography has undergone.

Revision

Ex. 1. Fill in the text with the appropriate word from the box.

across, existing, sculpture, constructed, stainless, lands, scholar, accurate, exists

The first globes were built by ancient Greeks. The earliest known globe was said to have been (1) _____ by the (2) _____ Crates about 150 B.C. An ancient celestial globe that still (3) _____ was made about 150 A.D. as part of a (4) _____ , called the Farnese Atlas, in the Naples Museum, Italy. The oldest (5) _____ terrestrial globe was built in Germany, in 1492. This globe does not show the Americas. As new (6) _____ were discovered in the 16th and 17th centuries, globes became more (7) _____ . The world’s largest globe is the Unisphere, which was built for the 1964 New York World’s Fair. This (8) _____ steel globe is 37 m (9) _____ and weighs 408,000 kg, including its base.

Ex. 2. Translate the following text into Russian (in writing).

What is science?

Science arose out of man’s efforts to survive, his natural curiosity, his search for order in a seemingly capricious world. It arose from man’s efforts to understand nature and himself. To science we owe most of our comforts, our leisure, our health and longevity, our ability to mold the environment, to communicate instantly and to move swiftly over the earth.

What is science? Science is first of all a human activity. It is a creative and dynamic activity. It is an expression of human experience. Science involves observation and measurement, imagination and hypothesis, communication and criticism.

In science you study nature and human nature, living nature and non-living nature. There is nothing too small or too large, too distant or too near. It is not so much what a scientist studies as how he studies it, that makes the study of science, arranged in orderly fashion. A scientist is always trying to reduce confusion to plain common sense.

A scientist observes and measures objects and phenomena of physical world. He analyses behaviour of matter and energy. He generalizes from collection of observations and measurements and relationships. He develops theories and uses them as guides to new experiments and observations. Thus, first, a scientist identifies and classifies multiple facts and data. Then, he generalizes and systematizes analogous facts of specific character. Further, he combinations deduces conclusions as to general and systematic character of analogous facts. Finally, he illustrates conclusions with different facts of reality.

What distinguishes science from other activities is that it enables man to see the world “as it really is”. This may mean different things to different men at different times. Over the ages, science has found the world to be flat at one time, round at another and more recently “egg-shaped”, to be the centre of the universe and, later only a speck in the cosmos; to be made up of four fundamental substances and, later, of more than one hundred fundamental substances. This does not mean that science is unreliable. It means that science keeps pace with the times. Science is an occupation for people who are open-minded, who are capable of putting their beliefs to many tests. There is always room for freshness, newness, brightness in it. The openness and freedom of science makes it the most advanced kind of thought mankind has so far developed.

Ex. 3. Translate into English using the vocabulary of the Unit.

  1. Различные подходы к изучению географии привели к развитию других областей знаний.

  2. Физическая география – это наука о природной среде и о взаимоотношениях живых организмов в этой среде. Она изучает формы земной поверхности и водных объектов, климат, почвенный покров, растения и животных.

  3. Политическая география изучает управление в регионах, территориальные приобретения, политические границы и формы правления.

  4. Экономическая география изучает ресурсы и их использования, сельское хозяйство и землепользование, мировую торговлю.

  5. Историческая география изучает, как с течением времени менялись взаимоотношения между людьми и окружающей их средой.

Ex. 4. Render the following text in English.

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