The Reading / Listening - Robotic Muscles - Level 4

Scientists from elite universities have found a new way of creating artificial muscles. They called their discovery a "soft robot". It weighs 2.6 grams and looks like a small water-filled bag. An origami-inspired framework gives it support and strength. This means it can lift something 1,000 times its own weight. This is like a newborn baby lifting a four-wheel-drive car. The ground-breaking discovery could benefit many areas of science and medicine.



The scientists work in the area of soft robotics. Their muscle takes 10 minutes to make and costs less than a dollar. A researcher hopes to create "softer" robots that are like humans. He said: "Humans are normally soft and brittle compared to the big industrial robots….The next step is to take this system and develop it into a fully functional robot." It could be like the human hand - strong enough to grip an object, while being soft and gentle.

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Robotic Muscles - Level 5 or  Robotic Muscles - Level 6

Sources
  • https://www.newscientist.com/article/2154480-feather-light-artificial-muscles-lift-1000-times-own-weight/
  • https://www.theverge.com/2017/11/27/16705062/soft-robot-muscles-origami-skeleton-mit-harvard
  • https://www.news-medical.net/news/20171127/Origami-inspired-artificial-muscles-can-lift-1000-times-their-weight.aspx


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 from elite
  2. a new way of creating artificial
  3. a small water-
  4. gives it support
  5. lift something 1,000 times
  6. a newborn
  7. The ground-
  8. areas of science
  1. its own weight
  2. breaking discovery
  3. and medicine
  4. baby
  5. universities
  6. filled bag
  7. muscles
  8. and strength

Paragraph 2

  1. Their muscle takes
  2. robots that are
  3. Humans are normally soft
  4. big industrial
  5. The next
  6. develop it into a fully
  7. strong enough to
  8. being soft and
  1. functional robot
  2. 10 minutes to make
  3. gentle
  4. and brittle
  5. grip an object
  6. like humans
  7. step is to take
  8. robots

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

Scientists from elite universities (1) ___________________ new way of creating artificial muscles. They called (2) ___________________ a "soft robot". It (3) ___________________ and looks like a small (4) ___________________. An origami-inspired framework gives it support and strength. This means it can lift something 1,000 times (5) ___________________. This is like a newborn baby lifting a four-wheel-drive car. The ground-breaking discovery could (6) ___________________ of science and medicine.

The scientists work in the (7) ___________________ robotics. Their muscle takes 10 minutes to make and (8) ___________________ a dollar. A researcher hopes to create "softer" robots that are like humans. He said: "Humans are normally (9) ___________________ compared to the big industrial robots….The next step is to (10) ___________________ and develop it into a fully functional robot." It could be like (11) ___________________ - strong enough to (12) ___________________, while being soft and gentle.

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

Scientistsfromeliteuniversitieshavefoundanewwayofcreatingartifici
almuscles.Theycalledtheirdiscoverya"softrobot".Itweighs2.6grams
andlookslikeasmallwater-filledbag.Anorigami-inspiredframeworkgi
vesitsupportandstrength.Thismeansitcanliftsomething1,000timesit
sownweight.Thisislikeanewbornbabyliftingafour-wheel-drivecar.Th
eground-breakingdiscoverycouldbenefitmanyareasofscienceandm
edicine.Thescientistsworkintheareaofsoftrobotics.Theirmuscletake
s10minutestomakeandcostslessthanadollar.Aresearcherhopestocr
eate"softer"robotsthatarelikehumans.Hesaid:"Humansarenormally
softandbrittlecomparedtothebigindustrialrobots….Thenextstepistot
akethissystemanddevelopitintoafullyfunctionalrobot."Itcouldbelike
thehumanhand-strongenoughtogripanobject,whilebeingsoftandge
ntle.

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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