The Reading / Listening - Centipedes - Level 5

We should be very careful of centipedes. The venom from these creatures packs a serious punch. It can cause paralysis and death in small animals. A centipede's sting is highly poisonous and can kill humans. Scientists have discovered a deadly toxin in the venom that can stop the hearts of animals that are 15 times bigger than a centipede. The toxin in the Chinese red-headed centipede, which can grow to be eight inches long, blocks potassium from moving in and out of cells. This prevents an animal's brain from sending signals to the heart to beat, which leads to a rapid death.



The venom rarely kills humans, but it can be unbelievably painful. It also causes swelling for up to two weeks. Researcher Shilong Yang, an expert in toxins at China's Kunming Institute of Zoology, said: "The centipede's venom has evolved to simultaneously disrupt cardiovascular, respiratory, muscular and nervous systems." This has not been found in other poisonous animals. Despite their name, centipedes do not have 100 legs. They have a number of legs, ranging from 30 to 354. Centipedes always have an odd number of pairs of legs. This means no centipede has exactly 100 legs.

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Centipedes - Level 4 or  Centipedes - Level 6

Sources
  • https://news.sky.com/story/giant-centipede-can-kill-animals-15-times-bigger-and-scientists-have-just-discovered-how-11220533
  • https://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/animals/blogs/centipede-toxin-potent-venom
  • https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2018/01/22/centipedes-eat-animals-15-times-their-size-thanks-to-this-powerful-toxin-study-finds/?utm_term=.5bb67ddc33d4


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. We should be very careful
  2. The venom from these
  3. packs a serious
  4. It can cause paralysis
  5. 15 times bigger
  6. grow to be eight
  7. This prevents an animal's brain
  8. leads to a rapid
  1. punch
  2. inches long
  3. death
  4. of centipedes
  5. from sending signals
  6. creatures
  7. than a centipede
  8. and death

Paragraph 2

  1. The venom rarely kills
  2. it can be unbelievably
  3. It also causes swelling for
  4. muscular and
  5. found in other poisonous
  6. a number of legs, ranging
  7. have an odd number
  8. This means no centipede has
  1. up to two weeks
  2. of pairs of legs
  3. exactly 100 legs
  4. from 30 to 354
  5. humans
  6. animals
  7. nervous systems
  8. painful

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

We should be very (1) ___________________. The venom from these creatures (2) ___________________ punch. It can cause paralysis and death in small animals. A centipede's sting is (3) ___________________ can kill humans. Scientists have discovered a deadly toxin in the venom that can stop the (4) ___________________ that are 15 times bigger than a centipede. The toxin in the Chinese red-headed centipede, which can grow to be (5) ___________________, blocks potassium from moving in and out of cells. This prevents an animal's brain from sending signals to the heart to beat, which leads to (6) ___________________.

The (7) ___________________ humans, but it can be unbelievably painful. It also (8) ___________________ up to two weeks. Researcher Shilong Yang, an expert in toxins at China's Kunming Institute of Zoology, said: "The centipede's venom has evolved to simultaneously (9) ___________________, respiratory, muscular and nervous systems." This has not been found in other poisonous animals. (10) ___________________, centipedes do not have 100 legs. They have a number of legs, (11) ___________________ to 354. Centipedes always have an odd number of pairs of legs. This means no centipede (12) ___________________ legs.

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

Weshouldbeverycarefulofcentipedes.Thevenomfromthesecreature
spacksaseriouspunch.Itcancauseparalysisanddeathinsmallanimals.
Acentipede'sstingishighlypoisonousandcankillhumans.Scientistsha
vediscoveredadeadlytoxininthevenomthatcanstoptheheartsofanim
alsthatare15timesbiggerthanacentipede.ThetoxinintheChinesered-
headedcentipede,whichcangrowtobeeightincheslong,blockspotassi
umfrommovinginandoutofcells.Thispreventsananimal'sbrainfromse
ndingsignalstothehearttobeat,whichleadstoarapiddeath.Thevenom
rarelykillshumans,butitcanbeunbelievablypainful.Italsocausesswell
ingforuptotwoweeks.ResearcherShilongYang,anexpertintoxinsatCh
ina'sKunmingInstituteofZoology,said:"Thecentipede'svenomhasev
olvedtosimultaneouslydisruptcardiovascular,respiratory,musculara
ndnervoussystems."Thishasnotbeenfoundinotherpoisonousanimals
.Despitetheirname,centipedesdonothave100legs.Theyhaveanumb
eroflegs,rangingfrom30to354.Centipedesalwayshaveanoddnumber
ofpairsoflegs.Thismeansnocentipedehasexactly100legs.

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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