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There is a new variant of COVID-19. It is called the Delta variant. It started in India and is now in many countries. Doctors and scientists are worried about this variant. People are worried that vaccines might not be able to stop it. Delta spreads much faster than regular COVID. It is also more dangerous.

Vaccinations have been going well in many countries. But as more people get vaccinated, some governments are struggling to get more people vaccinated. In the US, there has been a big drop in vaccinations. In the beginning, it was easy to get vaccinations to people. Now, 50% of the US is fully vaccinated but the number is not increasing as quickly as before. This problem is happening in other countries too. Some people are refusing to get vaccinated. With the Delta variant spreading and vaccinations slowing down, COVID cases are rising quickly again. 

In the US, some places have offered money or other things to try and get people vaccinated. In France, the government has said people cannot go to restaurants, cinemas, sports events, shopping malls and other places without a vaccine. Many governments don’t want to make this kind of rule though. Scientists and doctors are worried that there could be more variants if the Delta variant continues to spread and people don’t get vaccinated.

Difficult words

Variant (n): When a virus changes and becomes different.

Dangerous (adj): Being able to cause harm.

Struggling (adj): Having a hard or difficult time.

Refusing (v): To say no.

Offer (v): To say you can give something to someone.

Activities

For listening practice, listen to the recorded article here:

American English Audio:

Match the Synonym!

1. Variant A. Hard time.
2. Dangerous B. Changed virus.
3. Struggling C. Give
4. Refusing D. Say no.
5. Offer E. Could get hurt.

True or False?

1. The Delta variant started in China. T / F

2. The Delta variant spreads slower than regular COVID-19. T / F

3. Doctors and scientists are worried. T / F

4. It is difficult for some countries to give vaccines. T / F

5. You cannot go to a restaurant in France without a vaccine. T / F

Unscramble the sentence!

1. called / It / the / Delta / variant / is

2. are / Doctors / scientists / worried / and

3. is / more / also / It / dangerous

4. is / problem / This / in / other / happening / countries

5. are / people / Some / refusing

Listening and Vocabulary

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

American English Audio:

MoneyIncreasingStarted
WorriedRegularDrop

There is a new variant of COVID-19. It is called the Delta variant. It (1)__________ in India and is now in many countries. Doctors and scientists are worried about this variant. People are worried that vaccines might not be able to stop it. Delta spreads much faster than (2)___________ COVID. It is also more dangerous.

Vaccinations have been going well in many countries. But as more people get vaccinated, some governments are struggling to get more people vaccinated. In the US, there has been a big (3)_______ in vaccinations. In the beginning, it was easy to get vaccinations to people. Now, 50% of the US is fully vaccinated but the number is not (4)____________ as quickly as before. This problem is happening in other countries too. Some people are refusing to get vaccinated. With the Delta variant spreading and vaccinations slowing down, COVID cases are rising quickly again. 

In the US, some places have offered (5)__________ or other things to try and get people vaccinated. In France, the government has said people cannot go to restaurants, cinemas, sports events, shopping malls and other places without a vaccine. Many governments don’t want to make this kind of rule though. Scientists and doctors are (6)___________ that there could be more variants if the Delta variant continues to spread and people don’t get vaccinated.

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. How are vaccinations going in your country?
5. Have you been vaccinated?
6. What is the most common COVID vaccine in your country?
7. Has your government been having trouble convincing people to get vaccinated?
8. How can governments educate people about vaccines?
9. Why do you think people don’t want to get vaccinated?
10. Do you think vaccines are the only way to stop COVID-19?
11. Do you know anyone who doesn’t want to get vaccinated?
12. What is the best way to convince people to get vaccinated?
13. Has the Delta variant been an issue in your country?
14. What do you think about France’s strict vaccination rules?
15. Do you think your country would ever make vaccination rules similar to France?
16. Do you think forcing people to get vaccinated takes away their freedom?
17. What was the opinion of vaccines in your country before COVID-19?
18. Do you think your country will be able to get to an 80% vaccination rate?
19. Do you think social media has played a role in the slow vaccination rates?
20. Are there any other things that you think unvaccinated people should not be able to do?