photo Tara Benwell Listen to News with Tara Benwell - Instructions:
1. Preview the vocabulary and read the gapfill text.
2. Play the news report and try to fill in the blanks.
3. Answer the comprehension questions by writing full sentences.
4. Use the discussion question to write an essay or discuss the story with other students.
5. Click "show Answers" to see the full text.
6. Pretend to be a news anchor by reading each story out loud.

dateline: 17 December 2013

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Chinese Probe Makes Lunar Landing

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

  • space probe: a spacecraft that carries tools or equipment for exploration
  • rover: a vehicle that can move and explore
  • touch down: to land
  • survey: to inspect an area
  • soft landing: a controlled landing in which the vehicle remains intact

Chinese Probe Makes Lunar Landing

An unmanned Chinese space probe that touched down on the moon on Saturday has successfully deployed its robotic lunar rover. Yutu, which translates to “Jade Rabbit”, was the pet rabbit of the Chinese moon goddess. Yutu will spend three months surveying the moon and looking for possible for mining missions. Technology has improved since the last lunar landing in by the Soviet Union. China is now the country to make a successful soft landing on the moon.

Comprehension Questions

  1. What type of space vehicle is Yutu?
  2. What was Yutu named after?
  3. Why does the report mention the Soviet Union?

Discussion Question: China has been investing a lot of time and money into its space program in recent years. Do you think this successful Chinese landing will cause the US to put more focus on future lunar missions?

show Answers

Written and recorded by Tara Benwell for EnglishClub
Tara Benwell is a Canadian freelance writer and editor who specializes in materials and articles for the ELT industry.
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