# A student discussion

Listen to two students comparing Mars and Earth to practise and improve your listening skills.

Do the preparation task first. Then listen to the audio and do the exercises.

### Transcript

Teacher: So you've got a few minutes to discuss with your partner.

Student 1: So, as far as I know, the main similarity between Mars and Earth is that they can both support human life.

Student 2: Yeah, but do we know that's actually true? I mean, Mars is much colder than Earth, isn't it? It says here it's about minus 55 degrees most of the time, whereas on Earth only places like Antarctica get that cold.

Student 1: True. Well then, I suppose you could say both planets are a similar distance from the Sun?

Student 2: No way! Mars is much further away! It says here it's about 228 million kilometres, while Earth is about 150 million.

Student 1: Yes, but in space that's not that far. Jupiter is, like, almost 780 million kilometres. That's why we use astronomical units when we talk about distances in space. Earth is 1 astronomical unit from the Sun and Mars is 1.3. The difference doesn't sound so big when you look at it that way.

Student 2: I see what you mean. Jupiter is 5.2 astronomical units so I guess you're right. What other similarities are there between the two planets?

Student 1: Let's see … not the colour, obviously!

Student 2: Yeah! Earth is called the blue planet and Mars is called the red planet for pretty obvious reasons!

Student 1: Their sizes are pretty different. Mars is about half the size of Earth.

Student 2: What about this? It looks like the days on both planets are almost the same length. Earth's day is 24 hours but Mars's is about half an hour longer.

Student 1: You're right. OK, any other things they both share?

Student 2: I suppose you could say they have water in common.

Student 1: Could you? How?

Student 2: Well, Earth is 70 per cent water and Mars probably had huge oceans in the past. It's just that most of the water there now is probably frozen.

Student 1: Ah, I see. I don't think we can say the air is the same, though. Most of Earth's air is nitrogen and oxygen, but Mars …?

Student 2: Mars doesn't really have air, not compared with Earth. It's got about one per cent as much air as Earth.

Student 1: Right, and it's mostly carbon dioxide.

Student 2: Gravity is another difference. I didn't know this, but Mars has higher gravity than the Moon. But it's much less than on Earth, of course.

Student 1: Oh, yes. It says Mars has about 38 per cent of Earth's gravity.

Teacher: OK, let's see what you've found …

### Language level

Submitted by ArturoBustillos on Fri, 10/07/2020 - 17:52

Of course they will... but not yet... I think it will take 30 or 40 years to be able to see humans in Mars

Submitted by Dariusz on Wed, 08/07/2020 - 15:09

When wee look at this discuss we see how important is The Sun. This planet give us and other planets energy without our life can't be exist. Mars is much further away the Sun than Earth, not too much but enough to be much colder than Earth. minus 55 degrees is very cold, but the biggest problem is an air. How we can live without oxygen, nitrogen? I can't answer, but may live on Mars can be possible on other rules than Eart.

Submitted by Hn0062 on Mon, 06/07/2020 - 20:09

It seems to me, It is possible and will happen one day but no oe ne knows when. scientice have exployed about it. personally I believe the life in thmars will be better than the earth. in princible, the life can continue in it. I hope i can live on the Mars, becouse i think it will be an astonishing experience

Submitted by abudo93 on Sun, 05/07/2020 - 13:32

I don't think that cause there are many difference between both the planets, as water, air and gravity.

Submitted by Abdisalad on Sun, 05/07/2020 - 07:01