Level 1 | Level 2 | Level 3 | Answers

On July 30, NASA launched a new rover to Mars, called “Perseverance”. The rover is similar in design to the “Curiosity” rover which NASA is currently operating on Mars. It is going to Mars to search for evidence of life on the planet. It will land in the Jezero crater. There was a lake in the Jezero crater billions of years ago. Scientists at NASA think this area will be the best place to search for evidence of life. It will send some rock samples from Mars back to Earth in the future.

Perseverance is also carrying a small helicopter called “Ingenuity”. Ingenuity will be the first-ever flying machine on Mars. Once Perseverance lands on Mars, Ingenuity will separate from it and they will remain apart for their entire missions. NASA will use Ingenuity to search for interesting locations on Mars. By looking at Mars from the air, they will be able to see more of Mars’ surface than they have before. There will be a lot of challenges because it is the first flying machine on Mars. Scientists at NASA will need to practice with Ingenuity because Mars’ atmosphere is different from Earth.  They will use the information that they get from Ingenuity to plan more places to go for future rovers.

It will take 7 months for Perseverance and Ingenuity to reach Mars. Mars and Earth are not always the same distance from each other. NASA launched on July 30 because the Earth was quite close to Mars at this time. China and the UAE have also launched missions to Mars in July 2020 because of the Earths closeness to Mars. After 7 months, Perseverance and Ingenuity will land on Mars in February 2021.

Difficult Words

Launch (v): To start to go.

Operate (v): To control a machine or system.

Evidence (n): Things which make something true.

Surface (n): The outside layer of something.

Distance (n): The length between two places.

Activities

For listening practice, listen to the recorded article here:

British English: Coming Soon!

American English:

Match the Synonym!

 1. Launch  A. Control
 2. Operate  B. Outside layer.
 3. Evidence  C. Start
 4. Surface  D. Length.
 5. Distance  E. Proof

True or False?

1. NASA launched a rover to Pluto. T / F

2. There has never been a rover designed similarly to Perseverance. T / F

3. The rover will land in the crater of an old lake. T / F

4. There has never been a flying machine on Mars before.  T / F

5. It will take more than 1 year to get to Mars. T / F

Unscramble the sentence!

1. design / to / The rover / in / is / similar / “Curiosity” rover / the

2. was / in / lake / the / There / Jezero / crater / a

3. samples / rock / some / It / send / will

4. of / will / a / lot / There / be / challenges

5.at / NASA / practice / will / need / to / Scientists

Listening and Vocabulary

Listen to the article and fill in the words OR practice vocabulary and fill in the words.

British English: Coming Soon!

American English:

Remain Search Reach
Design Missions Information

On July 30, NASA launched a new rover to Mars, called “Perseverance”. The rover is similar in (1)___________ to the “Curiosity” rover which NASA is currently operating on Mars. It is going to Mars to search for evidence of life on the planet. It will land in the Jezero crater. There was a lake in the Jezero crater billions of years ago. Scientists at NASA think this area will be the best place to (2)__________ for evidence of life. It will send some rock samples from Mars back to Earth in the future.

Perseverance is also carrying a small helicopter called “Ingenuity”. Ingenuity will be the first-ever flying machine on Mars. Once Perseverance lands on Mars, Ingenuity will separate from it and they will (3)___________ apart for their entire missions. NASA will use Ingenuity to search for interesting locations on Mars. By looking at Mars from the air, they will be able to see more of Mars’ surface than they have before. There will be a lot of challenges because it is the first flying machine on Mars. Scientists at NASA will need to practice with Ingenuity because Mars’ atmosphere is different from Earth.  They will use the (4)_______________ that they get from Ingenuity to plan more places to go for future rovers.

It will take 7 months for Perseverance and Ingenuity to (5)_________ Mars. Mars and Earth are not always the same distance from each other. NASA launched on July 30 because the Earth was quite close to Mars at this time. China and the UAE have also launched (6)____________ to Mars in July 2020 because of the Earths closeness to Mars. After 7 months, Perseverance and Ingenuity will land on Mars in February 2021.

Conversation Questions

Take turns speaking with a partner or try to answer on your own:

1. Did you find this article interesting? Why or why not?
2. Did you learn anything new from this article? If so, what?
3. What do you think of this story?
4. Do you think NASA will find evidence of life on Mars?
5. Do you think life exists in space?
6. If NASA finds evidence of life will our thinking of space change?
7. What do you think of the Mars helicopter, Ingenuity?
8. Where else should scientists look for life in space?
9. Do you think humans will live in space in the future?
10. What missions in space would you like to see?
11. Why is finding evidence of alien life important?
12. Is it better to send machines to Mars instead of humans?
13. Would you like humans to go to Mars?
14. Is space travel important?
15. Do you think Earth will be uninhabitable someday?
16. Do you think space travel will be as easy as taking a plane someday?
17. Should space travel be publicly or privately funded?
18. Does your country have any old stories or theories about UFOs?
19. If NASA found aliens, should people on Earth feel threatened?
20. If you were an astronaut, what is one item you would like to bring with you?