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 …

Do you need to improve your English listening skills?
Join thousands of learners from around the world who are improving their English listening skills with our online courses.

Discussion

Download
Worksheet82.41 KB
I can't say I'm sure that Mars could allow life on itself, but I can say that I would be thrilled to see what kind of life could grow there. I hope they are way better than us as living creatures and actually take care of nature.
I think in the future it's possible because the scientists study a lot about the possibility people will live on Mars one day. Maybe now there aren’t the possibility, but when the studies are more advance it’s really possible.
According to the "Total Recall" movie, live on Mars is our future. Not the happy one though but, you know, nobody can't predict what it would be like. I think we can live on Mars if our technologies will make some steps forward. Of course, we will have to build stations with oxygen to breathe and warm enough to not no freeze to death. I'm sure we can do it in the future. But! The other question - what for? It obviously will cost a fortune but what will we have instead? Mines? What does Mars have that we can't find here on Earth? Vibranium for Captain America's shield? Probably not. So ... I think we can but I'm not sure we should. p.s. By the way, I've watched ones how one guy grew potatoes on Mars. It was quite creatively but we still can do it on the Earth ))
Thanks for the awesome explanation. In my opinion to do things on mars shows how much human intelligence and technology is growing and it will be one way of competition for the developed world. It may not have unique things but I think it will be part of exploration and may show the wealth of the people who affords to live there .
I think, people will live on Mars one day. Why not??? Mars and earth have got many similarity. Scinsists think that Mars support human life. But i think earth's life and mars life will not same. Because firstly mars is colder than earth, secondly mars's air have not got nitrogen and oxygen, and many other reasons.
Of course they will... but not yet... I think it will take 30 or 40 years to be able to see humans in Mars
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.
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
I don't think that cause there are many difference between both the planets, as water, air and gravity.
I think one day people will stay and enjoy living in Mars for several reasons . First, the distance of the both earth and mars to the sun is same so that means live can be possible at mars. Second, scientists have discovered that there is some air in the mars so people can live it. Finally, it is better to try living at new planet in the future.
I think that we could live on Mars in the future because science advances very fast, so if someday we have problems with global warming and the earth becomes a place where we cannot live, you could go to Mars and continue.
From my point of view, people will live on Mars one day. Firstly, many studies are currently available on the possibilities to live on Mars. Secondly, it will be like a discovery form rich people who will organize some trips over there. What's more, due to the rapid pollution of the earth and climate change challenges we should find another place to live on it.
According to the fast that science is developing, we may someday hear of the possibility to live on the Mars. Indeed, a bunch of things that old man couldn't even was thinking about, however it have realised in the present time. For instance, the fly which was in prior days crazy thought but now planes have invented . There various stuff were impossible yesterday become possible today.
I think it is not possible to live in Mars, because of cold weather, Water , Oxygen and the whole environment there isn't convenient for human living. And our god "Allah" says that in the holly book " Quran " that there will not be life in another place rather than Earth. But, In the future , I think it will be easier to travel to Mars due to huge development in transport and space-craft, So, I think there will be travels for entertainment and we may use things on Mars to fulfill our needs and deficit on Earth.
I think that is possible, because the science is developing much quickly. I believe that space station will be built, like the ones in the movies. But, it will be very expensive.
I think it will be impossible for us to live on Mars, because Mars doesnt have all required for living here!
Is complicated to state about the life in Mars, nowadays there are a lot of theories regarding the life in this planet but neither has been proven so to think about the possibility for human life in the future is a little tough, but I'm sure that the science will make more researches and probably with the results we could have a better conclusion related to this topic.
Relevant to this case, it says that one day human can live there. But in my view, there are many different problems which can cause problems for living on Mars. For instances, gravity, lower temperature, lack of air and introducing energy are just some of them. As we know, living on Earth needs a lot of energy and it is the main reason of many disputes in the world. Water is another problem, if on Mars it doesn't exist. It says that living on Earth will led to many problems by lack of water and energy in the future, we can anticipate the situation of living on Mars. On the other hand, I believe on science and technology. If we go to past centuries, we can realize the effects of science in our living. Therefore, I mean it is not impossible that one day human can go and live there without any problems. I hope so. Regards, Tayyebi
Despite the very low temperature on Mars, the little amount of air is the problem. I think if we will solve this issue by plantation for instance, we could live on Marc one day.
I think we can live in Mars in the far future, because there’s no more air and water for people life
People have dreaming about life on Marce for a long time. Many books were written about invasion this planet. But I think that people never will live there as on earth. The conditions are rather distinguish so the supporting life needs a lot of cost. In my opionion, we can only spend research works in this place but not live as a human society.
I think not , because of two reasons,one is air, the second is water. the mars is caller than earth they can't live in this circumstances.
No, I don’t think so at all! The mankind needs blu sky, blu oceans, green forests and many other things there aren’t on Mars.
Hi, According to me and it's even impossible in the future for humains to live on Mars because of the weather conditions: Mars is more colder than the earth, its gravity is 38% of the earth, not much more air for life, no water and so one.
I think people will live on Mars, but it is not near future. Of course, there are a lot of people on Earth now, but the population of some country such japan is decreasing now. So, people should not live on Mars yet.
I think that the life in mars is impossible even we use a special clothes for protection also no matter how science progresses, we cannot challenge nature
Fristly thank you for a valuable information, and I think so with the massive progress of the space research and different technologies, but of course doesn't like to people lives on earth.
I have an idea about that. Probably human who is boring with this planet, will leave from Earth. Because there is unfair sharing, bad behaviors in this world. Maybe another planet will solve humans problems. It will create a new world. I think it has to able to support adequately our life. Holy books may show us a way to explore.
Probably if people creates elementary infrastructure to live there, I think life will be pretty rubbish and boring at first, and how expensive to live there would that be?
I think so, but according to people's priorities, it won't happen very soon. Because people like making troubles and doing things which won't do any help to humanity itself.
I think that could be possible, the humans every day are looking for new technological advances and ways to create an artificial environment, for this, I believe that possibly shortly to live in mars, however in not good and comfortable conditions.
Possibly but not without challenges, it will take alot of conditioning for human to survive in Mars. But never say never
I was thinking to get to mars, but it will take a long time that happens,as I do not beleive people get to the moon,so ,in my opinion isn't easy...
I don't think people will live one day on March because the climate on that planet is very likely to remain as it is i.e. lacking oxygen. Human beings can't just live in an atmosphere which lacks oxygen.
they can but not like how we live here i think it well be a lots of condition to make that be
i would rather save out earth than move to new planet like mars. what we should do is plant more trees and reduce a development infrastructure in several place because there are a place should be used as lungs of the world like amazon forest and Kalimantan island with it's tropical forest.
I think, that people can live on Mars one day if they have special clothes to protect them of cold. Beside they should use mask with oxygen and nitrogen.
Is quite difficult nowdays, because if mars is as colder as antarctic it'll very tricky to live there. Nowdays scientists can't change climate conditions in the antarctic, but if with futher researches they finally change climat condition and allow people to live there, i think the same changement could be done on march
Hello everybody, i think Mars is a possibility planet for life, but we don't know how to live here, in the Earth, so we need first know how to live here, in peace with the nature and obviously with other persons, then we can think in live in other planet, maybe in the future we will, but for now we need know the peace.
For me is possible, several cientificts is working in tecnologies that allow us live in Mars one day, on the other hand, nowdays the tecnology is growing exponentially.