• Science, Passion and Pangea – an Animated English Listening Exercise

    This week’s video is really cool for several reasons. It’s about how a largely accepted scientific theory, continental drift, came to be. It’s also about a scientist, Alfred Wegener, and his passion to prove this theory, despite criticism and resistance.

    It is also really interesting to see how scientific ideas change and become accepted. My father is a science teacher and specialized in geology, so the idea of continental drift and plate tectonics has always been a fact to me. It is interesting to see that it wasn’t accepted at the proposed time. It makes me wonder, what theories today are not being accepted that will soon become basic theories?

    Watch the video below, then see if you can answer the listening questions.

    Answer the questions in comments, and we’ll respond.

    1. Hardly anyone in the 20th century said, “____ are there oceans and Why ___ _____ continents.

    2. He _____ __ in a balloon because he wants to take measurements of the atmosphere, he’s not the ______  __ __ he’s a scientist doing science.

    3. Nobody said that Arctic exploration was a _______.

    4. What does the above sentence mean?

    5. What was different about Wagner’s theory?

    6. Did people believe Wagner? Why didn’t they believe him?

    7. It is one thing to think of an idea and it is another thing to _____ it ____ for another 20 to 30 years.

    8. How important did Wagner feel his work was?

    9. What year did scientist believe Wagner was right?


    What are some of the biggest scientific changes you’ve seen in your lifetime? Do you have any predictions about what scientific ideas may change in the future? What is your passion? Would you risk your life to follow your passion?

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