Unit 9 Space Politics

By Ronnie Burns,2014-05-10 22:20
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Space Politics

    Unit Nine Space Politics I. Teaching Objectives

    1. To understand the audio materials of this unit.

    2. To grasp the key words, Phrases and structure.

    3. To mast the skills of writing and reading in this unit.

    1) mastering the skill of stating ones viewpoint and then developing it by presenting the facts

    intertwined with opinions.

    2) Scanning for Specific Information

    II. Teaching Content

    1. Lead-in activities

    2. Text Organization

    3. Skill learning in writing and reading

    4. Language points ( key words, phrases and difficult sentences)

    5. Grammar Focus (Attributive clause with sentential antecedent)

    6. Guided Practice (exercises, oral practice and group work)

    7. After-class Assignments

    III. Teaching Process

    1. Warm-up Questions / Activities

    1.Does space hold a shining promise for the future of mankind?

    2. will it become just another arena for greed and destruction.

    3. Shouldnt we concentrate on the problems here on Earth instead of wandering around the

    universe in search of who-knows-what?

    2. Text Organization


    Is public support for the international space effort necessary?

    Part 1Paras (1-4) History of public support for the space effort.

    Part2 (paras5-14) The new enthusiasm in space effort and its reasons.


    The conquer of space is the conquer of the Earth.

    3. Skill learning in writing and reading

    1) Reading skill:

    Scanning for Specific Information

    As weve learned, scanning a text before you read can make your reading more efficient in

    many ways. It can get you acquainted with the authors style and aims; it can give you an idea of

    how the text is organized and where to look for ideas and information. This third type of scanning

    can save you lots of valuable time when you need some specific information, for example when

    youre doing researchor answering comprehension questions!

2) Writing skill:

    This text is an argumentation.

     develops it by presenting the facts

    intertwined with opinions.The author also uses time markers to organize these paragraphs in The The author starts by stating his viewpoint. And thensimple chronological order(时间顺序). 4. Language points

    1. give that politicians seem determined to press ahead with it anyway--

     Considering that politicians seem to have made up their minds to persist with it (space effort)

    in any case

    Press ahead/on (with sth.)continue (doing sth.) in a determined way, knowing that it may take a long time or may be very difficult


    Despite public complaints, the company pressed on with its plan.

    2. The reac ot the moon, which was won by the Americans in 1969, was driven almost

    entirely by politics. The competition in moon landing, which was won by the Americans in 1969

    when they sent the first man onto the moon, was almost a sheer political power struggle.

     Be driven by be motivated by


    Te trapped miners were all driven by an urge to survive.

    3. he inspired a nation to think of space exploration as the ultimate test of Americas

    superiority over her Soviet enemyhe urged the people to consider space exploration the final proof of Americas strength against its rival the Soviet Union

    A test is an event or situation that makes clear the real nature of something, and proves how

    strong, effective, or true it is.


    The long separation was a test of their love.

    4. Americas success as the first nation to reach the moon, coupled with continuing Cold War

    rivalry, created much public support for the space programme and Washington was able to

    fund many more missions. Thanks to Americas success in being the first nation to land on the

    moon, along with the confrontation that was going on between the U.S. and the Soviet Union

    during the Cold War period, the American public began to show confidence in their government

    and support for the space programme, and, as a result, the U.S. government managed to have

    funds for many more space trips.

    Coupled with together with


    His energy and intelligence, coupled with his wifes skill and patience, help them overcome

    all difficulties.

    5. man-made craft were put on paths that would take them out of the solar system

    man-made spaceships were sent into orbits that were to lead them to the space outside of the

    solar systerm

    6. declinev.become smaller, weaker, fewer, etc.; move from a better to a worse position


    His influence has begun to decline now that he is old.

    7. It faded almost entirely, and the U.S. government was under pressure to scale back its space programme. It (public support for space exploration) disappeared almost entirely , and

    the U.S. government was forced to reduce the size of its space programme.

Scale back/downreduce esp. by a fixed rate


    The company is scaling down its operation in the Middle East.

    8. which put the future of many space missions in doubtwhich made it uncertain Whether many space missions were to be carried out

    (put sth.) in doubt (cause sth. to be) in a condition of uncertainty or at risk


    The future of the project is in doubt because of a lack of money.

    9. sustain its space programmekeep carrying out its space programme

    sustain v. keep up; maintain


    We do not have sufficient resources to sustain our campaign for long.

    10. spending bacame so tight that--the government was in such financial difficulties that

     Spendingn. payment of large amounts of money for public services, etc. by a government or

    other organization


    City departments must reduce their spending by 35 million before July 1. 11. even though there is little evidence that the public have even though almost nothing indicates that the public have (changed their attitude to space exploration)

    12. extraterrestrial activities space activities; space-exploration projects

    13. this project came within on vote of being canceled by the American House of

    Representatives this project was almost canceled by the American House of Representatives

    but one for vote

    Come within (an inch, etc.) of doing sth. almost do sth.


    The car came within an inch of hitting me.

    14. their share of the space stationtheir part in the expenses of the space station

    15. blow up explode; be destroyed by exploding


    The ammunition ship blew up and sank when it hit the rocks.

    16. The Russians, too, claim they are committed to supporting the International

    Space Stationan expense that country seems ill able to afford.The Russians also promise to undertake their share of the International Space Stationan expense which seems too large for Russia to bear.

    Supportvt. Pay the cost of

    Illad. With trouble or difficulty (often used before a verb)


    You can ill afford to waste your money.

    17. where does the impetus to fund these activities come from? --what is the motivation

    for spending money on these space activities?

    18. Promoting the cause of science is one possible answer.One possible motivation is promoting the cause of science.

    19. considerable controversy over whether projects likehave enough scientific value to merit the billions that have been and will be spent on itwhether such projects asare

scientifically important enough to be worth the billiones of dollars that have been and will be

    spent on it

    If somebody or something merits a particular action or treatment, they are good enough or

    important enough to be worth this action or treatment.


    He merited all the praise they gave him.

    20. most private companies favour improving techniques on Earthmost private companies

    prefer improving techniques on Earth (to extraterrestrial research)

    favourv. support; prefer


    Most observers favoured the second view.

    21. Significantly, NASA has so far not managed to get any substantial private

    Investment to manufacture products in space.So far NASA has not succeeded in getting any large investment which is important to manufacturing products in the space station.

    Significantlyad. to an important or considerable degree

    Substantiala. large in size, value or importance


    By hard study he made a substantial improvement in arithmetic.

    22. a concrete objectivea real purpose; a purpose that can be seen

    23. And can it justify the cost of this huge orbiting laboratory? And can it (this research)

    prove that the International Space Station is important enough to merit its huge cost?

    24. long-term space missionsspace trips to be performed over a long time in the future

    Long-terma. of or for a long period of time


    Regional Health Authorities are responsible for long-term planning in their regions. I hesitate

    before making a long-term commitment of any importance.

    25. At present, none are planned, and this seems unlikely to change in the near future. At

    present not a single long-term mission is planned, and neither does it seem that any of them is to

    be planned in the near future.

    26. a space station the size of 14 tennis courtsa space station as big as 14 tennise courts put together

    27. at a cost which is eventually expected to exceed $100 billionat a final cost estimated to be

    over $100 billion

    28. Given the shortage of funds in many other areas of scientific research, it would seem not.

    Considering that many other areas of scientific research dont have enough funds, it seems this research would not justify building that space station.

    29. Keep American/Russian ties strongmaintain a steady relationship between the U.S. and Russia; keep the U.S. and Russia on good terms

    30. there are far cheaper ways to keep the U.S. and Russia on good termsthere are much

    cheaper ways to maintain a good relationship between the U.S. and Russia (than building the

    International Space Station at such a huge cost)

    Be on good/bad/speaking termshave a good/bad /speaking relationship


    Ive always been on good terms with my neighbours.

31. And then there is the legacy of the Cold War. And then there is the after influence of the

    Cold War.

    The legacy of a person, event, or period of history is the situation or attitudes that they leave

    behind them, and the influence they have on the future.


    His weak chest was a legacy of a childhood illness.

    32. The Berlin Wall may have fallen, but NASA and the U.S. government still seem to believe

    in the ideal of one nations superiority in space.Confrontation between the socialist and

    capitalist countries may have ended, but it seems that NASA and the U.S. government still hope

    that the U.S., will be holding a dominant position in space exploration.

    33. It seems that the worlds politicians are caught in a time-warp.The worlds politicians

    seem to be mentally distorted so that they live in the present but think in the way of the past.

    timewarpn. distortion of time so that the past or the future becomes the present(时间错位)

    be caught inbe trapped in (some unpleasant situation and find it hard to get out of it ) Examples:

    They were caught in an earthquake.

    34. to prove he is master of his surroundingsto establish his dominance in the world

    5. Grammar Focus

    Attributive clause with sentential antecedent

     An attributive clause with a sentential antecedent, unlike other .attributive clauses which have

    a noun phrase as antecedent refers back to a whole clause or sentence.


     After that things improved , which surprised me a lot.

     He admired Mrs Brown, which I find strange.

     In these examples ,that ―which caused the surprise‖ or that ―which I find strange‖ is the

    whole of the event in the main clause.

    While such attributive clauses with ―which‖ are perfectly natural, the use of ―as‖ is

    acceptable where the relative pronoun is object or where the attributive clause is able to be placed

    at the beginning .


    He saw the girl , as\which he had hoped.

    As was natural, he married her (=He married her, as/which was natural)

    6. Guided Practice (exercises, oral practice and group work)

    1) Summary

    A). Ask several students to retell the text by using their own words.

    B). Talk about the main idea of the text.

    2) exercises: vocabulary and word-building

    3) group the students in 2-4, discussing the following questions in brief

     a. what do you consider the best reason to continue space exploration and research?

     b. Youve been invited to join a space exploration mission as an ovserver. Where would you like to go and what would you like to do

    7. After-class Assignments

    1.Recite the paragraph on page 264.and,

    2. finish the exercises of translation and cloze

     Text B Message to the Unknown

    Language Points:

    1. how long their wanderings will lasthow long they are going to travel in space 2. the Voyagers may approach the nearest star on their path in forty thousand years or

    sothe Voyager I and Voyager II may come near the planet closest to earth on their way in about

    40 thousand years

    3. some planets may carry intelligent beingsthere may be intelligent creatures on some planets

    4. The scientistsdecided to put a message on each of them.The scientistsdecided that

    each of the Voyagers carry a message.

    5. what form the message should takein what form the message should be delivered 6. a special record capable of reproducing images and sounds, packed with a needle and a

    drawing showing how the equipment should be used a special record that can play back pictures and sounds recorded on it, supplied with a needle and an illustration in the package,

    showing how to use the equipment

    needlen. a very small pointed piece of metal which touches a record as it turns and picks up the

    sound recorded on it

    7. to give an idea of the richness and variety of its cultures to create some impression of the rich and vivid cultures on Earth

    8. an active volcanoa volcano which is erupting

    9. the aliensthe intelligent beings on other stars

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