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August 23, 2009

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Australia May Need Extra Seasons

An Australian scientist says his country needs an extra couple of seasons. And he isn’t joking. Dr. Tim Entwisle, boss of Sydney's Royal Botanic Gardens, told Australia’s ABC News that Australians should stop thinking there are four seasons. He said this idea was “inherited” from Britain centuries ago. Dr. Entwisle said Australia really has at least five or six seasons. The country has many different regions and weather conditions. The far north is tropical and the south gets snow. In between there are deserts and mountains. Entwisle suggested some names for the new seasons. He proposed "sprummer" is the season between spring and summer, and "sprinter" covers the post-winter, early-spring period.


There is actually a lot of sense in Entwisle’s proposal. Aboriginal Australians have up to eight seasons. They have lived on the land for thousands of years and are experts in understanding local conditions. By contrast, non-indigenous people living in the north of Australia say there is just a dry and wet season. Some northerners say there is an extra "mango madness" season when it gets really humid. Dr. Entwisle believes different regions would need a different number of seasons, saying: "Five or six seasons would better reflect what we experience. If we're going to detect changes due to climate change, it's important that we get our seasons a little more in tune with the environment." He didn’t say whether there would be a silly season.


 
 

WARM-UPS

1. SEASONS: Walk around the class and talk to other students about seasons. Change partners often. Sit with your first partner(s) and share your findings.

2. CHAT: In pairs / groups, decide which of these topics or words from the article are most interesting and which are most boring.

 

scientists / joking / regions / weather conditions / tropical / deserts / mountains / sense / proposals / experts / indigenous people / wet season / mangoes / silly

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

3. SIX SEASONS: What are the best and worst things about these seasons? Complete this table with your partner(s). Change partners and share what you heard. Change and share again.

 

Best

Worst

Spring

 

 

Summer

 

 

Autumn

 

 

Winter

 

 

Rainy

 

 

Silly

 

 

4. SILLY SEASON: Students A strongly believe there should be an official silly season; Students B strongly believe that’s a silly idea.  Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

5. WEATHER: What’s your favourite weather? Rank these kinds of weather – your favourite at the top. Share your rankings with your partner(s).

  • heat wave
  • snow
  • fog
  • heavy rain
  • thunderstorms
  • freezing temperatures
  • 90% humidity
  • hurricane

6. CLIMATE: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word ‘climate’. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.


 
 

BEFORE READING / LISTENING

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

a.

A scientist in Australia joked that his country needed extra seasons.

T / F

b.

The scientist said the idea of 4 seasons in Australia came from Britain.

T / F

c.

The scientist suggested Australia needed up to six extra seasons.

T / F

d.

A new pre-summer season could be called sprinter.

T / F

e.

Aborigines in Australia use up to eight seasons.

T / F

f.

There is a season in Australia’s north when everyone eats mangoes.

T / F

g.

The scientist recommended more seasons because of climate change.

T / F

h.

There will be a season in Australia where everyone will be silly.

T / F

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

1.

couple

a.

time

2

inherited

b.

suggestion

3.

regions

c.

recommended

4.

suggested

d.

received

5.

period

e.

logic

6.

sense

f.

few

7.

proposal

g.

show

8.

experts

h.

harmony

9.

reflect

i.

areas

10.

tune

j.

specialists

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

1.

an extra couple

a.

north is tropical

2

this idea was “inherited”

b.

climate change

3.

The far

c.

Entwisle’s proposal

4.

Entwisle suggested some names for

d.

early-spring period

5.

the post-winter,

e.

humid

6.

There is actually a lot of sense in

f.

of seasons

7.

They have lived on the land

g.

with the environment

8.

it gets really

h.

from Britain

9.

detect changes due to

i.

for thousands of years

10.

a little more in tune

j.

the new seasons

WHILE READING / LISTENING

GAP FILL: Put the words into the gaps in the text.

An Australian scientist says his country needs an ____________ couple of seasons. And he isn’t ____________. Dr. Tim Entwisle, boss of Sydney's Royal Botanic Gardens, told Australia’s ABC News that Australians should stop ____________ there are four seasons. He said this idea was “inherited” from Britain centuries ago. Dr. Entwisle said Australia really has at ____________ five or six seasons. The country has many different regions and weather conditions. The far north is ____________ and the south ____________ snow. In between there are deserts and mountains. Entwisle suggested some names for the new seasons. He ____________ "sprummer" is the season between spring and summer, and "sprinter" ____________ the post-winter, early-spring period.

 

 

 

thinking
proposed
tropical
extra
covers
least
joking
gets

There is actually a lot of ____________ in Entwisle’s proposal. Aboriginal Australians have up to eight seasons. They have lived on the ____________ for thousands of years and are ____________ in understanding local conditions. By contrast, non-indigenous people living in the north of Australia say there is just a dry and wet season. Some northerners say there is an extra “mango madness” season when it gets really ____________. Dr. Entwisle believes different ____________ would need a different number of seasons, saying: "Five or six seasons would better ____________ what we experience. If we're going to detect changes due to climate change, it's important that we get our seasons a little more in ____________ with the environment." He didn’t say ____________ there would be a silly season.

 

 

regions
experts
sense
whether
tune
land
reflect
humid

LISTENING – Listen and fill in the gaps

An Australian scientist says his country needs _________________ seasons. And he isn’t joking. Dr. Tim Entwisle, boss of Sydney's Royal Botanic Gardens, told Australia’s ABC News that Australians should stop thinking there are four seasons. He said this _________________ from Britain centuries ago. Dr. Entwisle said Australia really has at least five or six seasons. The country has many different _________________ conditions. The __________________ and the south gets snow. In between there are deserts and mountains. Entwisle suggested some names for the new seasons. He proposed "sprummer" is the season between spring and summer, and "sprinter" ____________________, early-spring period.

There is actually _________________ Entwisle’s proposal. Aboriginal Australians have up to eight seasons. They have lived on the land for thousands of years _________________ understanding local conditions. By contrast, non-indigenous people living in the north of Australia say there is _________________ season. Some northerners say there is an extra “mango madness” season when it _________________. Dr. Entwisle believes different regions would need a different number of seasons, saying: "Five or six seasons would better reflect what we experience. If we're going to _________________ to climate change, it's important that we get our seasons a little more in tune with the environment." He didn’t say whether there _________________ season.


 
 

AFTER READING / LISTENING

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

silly

season

 

 

 

  • 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:

  • joking
  • stop
  • ago
  • regions
  • between
  • covers
  • sense
  • land
  • dry
  • humid
  • reflect
  • tune

STUDENT SEASONS SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about seasons 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.

 

STUDENT 1

_____________

STUDENT 2

_____________

STUDENT 3

_____________

Q.1.

 

 

 

 

Q.2.

 

 

 

 

Q.3.

 

 

 

 

Q.4.

 

 

 

 

Q.5.

 

 

 

 

  • Now return to your original partner and share and talk about what you found out. Change partners often.
  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

SEASONS DISCUSSION

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

a)

What did you think when you read the headline?

b)

What springs to mind when you hear the word ‘season’?

c)

What’s your favourite season?

d)

Do different seasons change your feelings?

e)

Does your country have the right number of seasons?

f)

What do you think of Dr. Entwisle’s idea?

g)

Do you like the changing of the seasons?

h)

Is it better to live in a country with two, four or eight seasons?

i)

What do you think of the names “sprinter” and “sprummer”?

j)

What do you think happens in the silly season?

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

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

a)

Did you like reading this article?

b)

Do you think there’s a lot of sense in Entwisle’s proposal?

c)

Why do you think Australia doesn’t follow the Aborigine way of following eight seasons?

d)

What seasonal food to you like?

e)

Do you think climate change is making new seasons?

f)

What would life be like if there was just one season?

g)

Do you prefer the seasons in other countries?

h)

If you could invent a new season, what would it be like?

i)

What name would you give to a new season in your country?

j)

What questions would you like to ask Dr. Tim Entwisle?

LANGUAGE – MULTIPLE CHOICE

An Australian scientist says his country needs an extra (1) ____ of seasons. And he isn’t joking. Dr. Tim Entwisle, boss of Sydney's Royal Botanic Gardens, told Australia’s ABC News that Australians should stop (2) ____ there are four seasons. He said this idea was “(3) ____” from Britain centuries ago. Dr. Entwisle said Australia really has at (4) ____ five or six seasons. The country has many different regions and weather conditions. The far north is (5) ____ and the south gets snow. In between there are deserts and mountains. Entwisle suggested some names for the new seasons. He proposed "sprummer" is the season between spring and summer, and "sprinter" covers the (6) ____-winter, early-spring period.

There is actually a lot of sense (7) ____ Entwisle’s proposal. Aboriginal Australians have up to eight seasons. They have lived on the land for thousands of years and are (8) ____ in understanding local conditions. By contrast, non-indigenous people living in the north of Australia say there is just a dry and wet season. Some northerners say there is an extra “mango madness” season when it gets really (9) ____. Dr. Entwisle believes different regions would need a different number of seasons, saying: "Five or six seasons would better reflect (10) ____ we experience. If we're going to detect changes due (11) ____ climate change, it's important that we get our seasons a little more in tune with the environment." He didn’t say (12) ____ there would be a silly season.

Put the correct words from the table below in the above article.

1.

(a)

couplet

(b)

coupled

(c)

couples

(d)

couple

2.

(a)

thought

(b)

thinkers

(c)

thinking

(d)

thoughtful

3.

(a)

inherit

(b)

inherited

(c)

inheritance

(d)

inheriting

4.

(a)

least

(b)

lots

(c)

last

(d)

lost

5.

(a)

tropically

(b)

tropics

(c)

tropical

(d)

tropic

6.

(a)

pest

(b)

past

(c)

psst

(d)

post

7.

(a)

on

(b)

in

(c)

of

(d)

at

8.

(a)

experts

(b)

expertise

(c)

expertly

(d)

expert

9.

(a)

humidity

(b)

humid

(c)

humidness

(d)

humidify

10.

(a)

why

(b)

that

(c)

what

(d)

which

11.

(a)

to

(b)

at

(c)

of

(d)

by

12.

(a)

weather

(b)

wherever

(c)

wetter

(d)

whether

WRITING

Write about seasons for 10 minutes. Correct your partner’s paper.

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

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 seasons. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. SEASONS: Make a poster about the seasons in your country. What is different about them? Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

4. NEW SEASONS: Write a magazine article about two new seasons in your country. Include an imaginary interview with the person who created and named them.

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. LETTER: Write a letter to Dr. Tim Entwisle. Ask him three questions about seasons. Give him three of your opinions about his ideas. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a.

F

b.

T

c.

F

d.

F

e.

T

f.

F

g.

T

h.

F

SYNONYM MATCH:

1.

couple

a.

few

2

inherited

b.

received

3.

regions

c.

areas

4.

suggested

d.

recommended

5.

period

e.

time

6.

sense

f.

logic

7.

proposal

g.

suggestion

8.

experts

h.

specialists

9.

reflect

i.

show

10.

tune

j.

harmony

PHRASE MATCH:

1.

an extra couple

a.

of seasons

2

this idea was “inherited”

b.

from Britain

3.

The far

c.

north is tropical

4.

Entwisle suggested some names for

d.

the new seasons

5.

the post-winter,

e.

early-spring period

6.

There is actually a lot of sense in

f.

Entwisle’s proposal

7.

They have lived on the land

g.

for thousands of years

8.

it gets really

h.

humid

9.

detect changes due to

i.

climate change

10.

a little more in tune

j.

with the environment

GAP FILL:

Australia may need extra seasons

An Australian scientist says his country needs an extra couple of seasons. And he isn’t joking. Dr. Tim Entwisle, boss of Sydney's Royal Botanic Gardens, told Australia’s ABC News that Australians should stop thinking there are four seasons. He said this idea was “inherited” from Britain centuries ago. Dr. Entwisle said Australia really has at least five or six seasons. The country has many different regions and weather conditions. The far north is tropical and the south gets snow. In between there are deserts and mountains. Entwisle suggested some names for the new seasons. He proposed "sprummer" is the season between spring and summer, and "sprinter" covers the post-winter, early-spring period.

There is actually a lot of sense in Entwisle’s proposal. Aboriginal Australians have up to eight seasons. They have lived on the land for thousands of years and are experts in understanding local conditions. By contrast, non-indigenous people living in the north of Australia say there is just a dry and wet season. Some northerners say there is an extra “mango madness” season when it gets really humid. Dr. Entwisle believes different regions would need a different number of seasons, saying: "Five or six seasons would better reflect what we experience. If we're going to detect changes due to climate change, it's important that we get our seasons a little more in tune with the environment." He didn’t say whether there would be a silly season.

LANGUAGE WORK

1 - d

2 - c

3 - b

4 - a

5 - c

6 - d

7 - b

8 - a

9 - b

10 - c

11 - a

12 - d

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