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中山大学南方学院大英部 全新版大学英语二册教案Unit 8

    Unit 8 Protecting Our Environment

?. Suggested Teaching Plan


Students will be able to:

    1. grasp the main idea (we should adopt a sensible environmentalism) and structure of the text (each part containing a contrast);

    2. appreciate the various argumentative skills employed in the text;

    3. master the key language points and grammatical structures in the text; 4. conduct a series of reading, listening, speaking and writing activities related to the theme of the unit.

Time Allotment

    stndrdthth1 period 2 period 3 period 4 period 5 period

    Pre-reading; While-reading While-reading Post-reading Theme-related

    While-reading (language points) (language points; (methods of Language

    (sensible text organization) argumentation; Learning Tasks

    environmentalism; after-text

    text organization) exercises) Check

    on students

    home reading

    (Text B)

Pre-reading tasks

1. T asks Ss the following questions on .the song Big Yellow Taxi: (5 minutes)

    ? What kind of paradise is described in the song? (a rural paradise before it was spoiled by paved

    roads, parking lots, buildings, etc.)

    ? What is the theme of the song? (protect the environment before it is too late) 2. Perceptual map (13 minutes)

    1) T asks Ss to speak out anything they can think of in association with environmental protection. 2) T notes down those things on the blackboard. T must put “environmental protection” down on the

    center of the blackboard, and arrange Ss’ ideas around it. Ss’ ideas are grouped by similarity.

    3) T sums up the categories of association, and advises Ss that they may use some association groups


中山大学南方学院大英部 全新版大学英语二册教案Unit 8

    in the writing required by the Theme-Related Language Learning Tasks.

    3. T may lead in to Text A by saying: The issue of environmental protection has been talked about over and over again. That’s why we can come up with so many associations. Now let’s take a look at Text A to find out what new ideas the author has to offer. (2 minutes)

While-reading tasks

1. What is a sensible environmentalism? (15 minutes)

    1) Ss look at the title, Saving Earth, but Only for Man, and try to make it into a complete sentence.

    (We must protect the earth’s environment so that it can better serve human beings.)

    2) T guides Ss through the definition of sensible environmentalism in Para 5 ? “A sensible

    environmentalism, the only kind of environmentalism that will win universal public support,

    begins by unashamedly declaring that nature is here to serve man. A sensible environmental is

    entirely man-centered: it calls for man to preserve nature, but on the grounds of self preservation.”

    3) Ss scan the text to find other sentences explaining sensible environmentalism (They can be found

    in Paras 2, 6, 8, 14).

    2. T draws Ss’ attention to Text Organization Exercise 1, dictates to them the main ideas of each of the three parts. Then T tells Ss that they are to fill in the supporting details as they go through the text. (10 minutes)

    3. T explains language points in Part I and gives Ss practice (see Language Study). (25 minutes)

    4. Ss find details supporting the main idea of Part I. (5 minutes)

    5. T explains language points in Part II and gives Ss practice (see Language Study). (25 minutes)

    6. Ss find details supporting the main idea of Part II. (10 minutes)

    7. T explains language points in Part III and gives Ss practice (see Language Study). (10 minutes)

    8. Ss find details supporting the main idea of Part III. (5 minutes)

    9. Ss complete Text Organization Exercise 2. (7 minutes)

Post-reading activities

1. Methods of argumentation (see Text Analysis) (25 minutes)

    1) T states that this essay is a piece of argumentative writing, and asks Ss to come up with ways of

    presenting an argument. T writes down Ss’ answers on the blackboard. At the end, if necessary, T

    may supplement the Ss’ list with more methods of argumentation.

    2) Ss form groups of four to five to find out what method of argumentation is used in each part of the


    3) Some groups report their findings to the class.

    4) T urges Ss to employ these methods in their own writing.


中山大学南方学院大英部 全新版大学英语二册教案Unit 8

    2. T guides Ss through some after-text exercises. (20 minutes)

    3. T checks on Ss’ home reading (Text B). (3 minutes)

    4. Ss do Part IV: Theme-Related Language Learning Tasks. (1 period)

?.Text Analysis

    The argumentative methods employed in Text A are as follows:

    Contrast: see Text Organization Exercise 2.

    Concession: (Para 8) “The country does need a substantial energy tax to reduce consumption. But

    it needs more production too.” (Para 10) “I like the reindeer as much as the next man. And I would be rather sorry if their mating patterns are disturbed. But you can’t have everything.” (Para 11) “I am no

    enemy of the owl. If it could be preserved at no or little cost, I would agree: the variety of nature is a good, a high aesthetic good. But it is no more than that.”

    Quotation: Para 8 quotes Protagoras’ principle: “Man is the measure of all things.”

    Example: (Para 3) “For example: preserving the atmosphere, by both protecting the ozone layer and halting the greenhouse effect, is an environmental necessity.” (Para 13) “The most urgent accommodation must be made when the very integrity of man’s environment --- e.g., atmospheric ozone

    --- is threatened. When the threat to man is of a lesser order (say, the pollutants from coal- and oil-fired

    generators that cause death from disease but not fatal damage to the ecosystem), a more moderate accommodation that balances economic against health concerns is in order.”

    Definition: The definitions of “luxuries” and “necessities” in Para 2; and the definition of “sensible environmentalism” in Para 5.

    Cause and effect: (Para 3) Ozone reduction causes skin cancer, etc. (Para 4) Greenhouse effect leads to “melting ice caps, flooded coastlines, disturbed climate, dried up plains and, ultimately, empty


    Data: (Para 7) “...the May storms that killed more than 125,000 Bengalis and left 10 million

    homeless.” (Para 8) “Government estimates indicate a nearly fifty-fifty chance that under the ANWR

    lies one of the five largest oil fields ever discovered in America.” (Para 11) “...livelihood for 30,000

    logging families, I choose family over owl.”

?. Cultural Notes

1. Environmental protection organizations:

    With a growing awareness of the importance of environmental protection, a number of environmental protection organizations have been established. Here are some of them:

    Green Party: a British political party that aims to protect the environment. It is against the use of nuclear power and other forms of industry and transport which it considers harmful. It was formed


中山大学南方学院大英部 全新版大学英语二册教案Unit 8

    in 1973 as the Ecology Party, and changed its name to the Green Party in 1985. Other countries also have parties that share the same name and ideals.

    Greenpeace: a large international pressure group that aims to protect the environment. Its members are well known for taking direct action and putting their own lives in danger in order to stop people from harming the environment. For example, they often go out in small boats to stop people from killing whales or throwing poisonous material into the sea.

    The Environmental Protection Agency: a US government organization that established rules

    and standards for protecting the environment, e.g. against pollution.

    2. greenhouse effect: the retention of heat by the lower layers of the Earth’s atmosphere, which, it is believed, will cause a rise in temperature of the Earth and its atmosphere, known as global warming. Just as the glass of a greenhouse lets in the ultraviolet radiation from the sun while trapping the infrared radiation emitted within, so gases in the atmosphere (such as water vapour, carbon dioxide, methane, and chlorofluorocarbons, or CFCs) absorb infrared radiation from the Earth’s surface and

    reflect it back on to the planet. With the addition of solid pollutants, the capacity of the lower layers to absorb and re-radiate heat is increased. The average concentration of carbon dioxide in the air has increased by over 15 per cent in the last hundred years or so, due mainly to the burning of vast quantities of such fossil fuels as coal, gas, and oil. This, coupled with deforestation, is reducing the planet’s ability to maintain the carbon dioxide balance. It is expected that the original level of carbon dioxide will be doubled within the next hundred years.

    It is difficult to predict the extent and effects of global wanning, but in 1990 scientists of the International Panel on Climate Change suggested that world temperatures may have risen by 0.5? in

     by 2030 and 3-4? by 2090, unless drastic action is the past century and be set to rise a further l?

    taken. The rises forecast disastrous consequences for mankind---especially for the poor and those in low-lying regions---including famine, death, and mass migration. Expansion of ocean waters and melting of polar icecaps would raise sea levels by up to 1 m (2-3 feet) within a century, flooding such highly populated deltas as the Ganges in Bangladesh. Many low lying islands might disappear. Climate zones could shift latitude by hundreds of miles, bringing further desertification and affecting grain-producing areas such as the Great Plains of the USA.There is already evidence of the freak weather predicted by scientists, such as unpredictable rainfall, storms, and droughts, as in Ethiopia and the US grain-belt.

    Scientists propose various solutions. Some suggest a limit to growth in industrial production, consumption, and population, while others favour technical solutions such as transporting excess water to inland basins, removing greenhouse gases from exhausts before they reach the atmosphere, or planting more trees to absorb carbon dioxide. Increased use of nuclear energy and renewable energy is the only effective way of reducing carbon dioxide emissions, though better energy conservation will also play a role.

    3. environment: the physical surroundings of an organism or organisms, including biological, physical,


中山大学南方学院大英部 全新版大学英语二册教案Unit 8

    and chemical factors. In the context of human ecology, it also includes social and cultural surroundings. Planning, caring for, and conservation of the human environment, both built and natural, became of increasing concern in the years following World War II. Since then the environmental movement has broadened public concern so that the term now encompasses wildlife and endangered species and habitats, and the threat to planetary systems posed by pollution, deforestation, desertification, and other effects of human activity. In philosophy, environmentalism stresses the influence of the physical environment on man’s development and activities.

    4. Gala hypothesis: the theory, put forward by the British scientist James E. Lovelock (1919- ) in the early 1970s, that the earth is a single organism. Gaia was the ancient Greeks’ earth goddess, and in

    Gaia: A New Look at Life on Earth (1979), Lovelock suggests that the earth is self regulating, like the human body. For example, the more or less constant composition of the earth’s atmosphere over geological time has been maintained by a delicate balance between living organisms, oceans, and atmosphere. Focusing on biological feedback processes, the theory has the possible implication that if mankind disturbs the earth’s natural ecological balannce, the planet itself will compensate by

    undermining man’s domination. In distinction to the traditional view that organisms merely adapt to their environments, the Gaia theory holds that they also modify that environment to make it more hospitable to themselves.

    5. Protagoras (c. 481-411 B.C.): Greek philosopher, one of the most renowned Sophists (professional teacher in Greece in the 5th century B.C.), now known mainly for his saying that “Man is the measure of all things.”

?. Language Study

    1. environment: 1) natural conditions, e.g. land, air and water, in which we live (used in the singular) Examples: The committee is passing new laws to preserve the environment.

    The factory released poisonous chemicals that damaged and destroyed the environment.

    2) all the circumstances, people, things, and events around sb. that influence their life Examples: The twins were separated at birth and brought up in entirely different environments.

    Pupils in our schools are taught in a safe, secure environment.

    The hotel provides a quiet, restful environment for our guests to relax in. 2. aversion: strong dislike (followed by to)

    Examples: He took an immediate aversion to his new teacher.

    Many people have a natural and emotional aversion to insects.

    3. conflict: be in opposition, collision or disagreement (followed by with)

    Examples: Our findings conflict with the results of the government’s survey.

    Personal ethics and professional ethics sometimes conflict.

    There are conflicting reports about the identity of the hostage.


中山大学南方学院大英部 全新版大学英语二册教案Unit 8

    4. proposal: a plan or idea, often a formal or written one, which is suggested for people to think about and decide upon (followed by for or to do sth.)

    Examples: The new president is to put forward new proposals for resolving the country’s

    financial crisis.

    Their proposal to build a supermarket was welcomed by the local residents.

    Palestinians rejected the latest cease-fire proposal put forward by the Israeli Prime


    5. in the name of: for the reason of; using the excuse of; as the representative of; by the authority of Examples: They arrested him in the name of the safety of the country.

    Let me thank you in the name of my parents.

    6. distinguish: recognize the difference (between)

    Examples: He is too young to distinguish right from wrong.

    Fingerprints can be used to distinguish the two suspects.

    7. .... if costless: if those things don’t cost much

    8. regardless: in spite of everything; anyway

    Examples: His parents objected to his marriage, but he carried on regardless.

    We warned them that there wasn’t time to get to the top of the mountain and back

    before dark, but they went on regardless.

    9. fundamental: of the basis or foundation of sth. (followed by to)

    Examples: Teaching your child to distinguish right from wrong is one of the fundamental tasks of


    The fundamental problem lies in their inability to distinguish between reality and


    He believes better relations with China are fundamental to the wellbeing of the area. 10. combat: fight or struggle (against)

    Examples: Many politicians emphasized the importance of combating international terrorism.

    Doctors are still seeking ways to combat AIDS.

    11. atmosphere: 1) the mixture of gases that surrounds the earth (used in the singular)

    Examples: The space shuttle Columbia will re-enter Earth’s atmosphere tomorrow morning.

    The treaty bans nuclear testing in the atmosphere.

    2) feeling in the mind that is created by a group of people or a place

    Examples: It has been a week since the outbreak of the riot. There is still an atmosphere of great

    tension in the city.

    Atmosphere over dinner was warm and friendly.

    12. reality: real or true situations

    Examples: We must face up to reality and accept that we’ve failed.

    They say that the economy is already coming out of the recession, but the reality is


中山大学南方学院大英部 全新版大学英语二册教案Unit 8

    that there has been no improvement at all.

    13. consequence: the result or effect of an action or condition

    Examples: An economic crisis may have tremendous consequences for our global security.

    There may be serious consequences for the country if the peace talks fail. 14. melt: cause (a solid) to become liquid

    Examples: The ice-cream has melted in the sun.

    The temperature is high enough to melt iron.

    15. empty breadbaskets: shortage of food supply because no crops will grow in the areas which used

    to provide a lot of food.

    16. urgent: calling for immediate attention

    Examples: After the earthquake, there was an urgent need for food and medicines.

    He was injured in the car accident and needed urgent medical attention. 17. universal: of, belonging to, affecting or done by all people or things in the world or in a particular


    Examples: AIDS has become a universal disease.

    Human beings have to face up to the universal threat of pollution.

    The Harry Potter books have been of universal interest.

    18. call for: require, demand

    Examples: Faced with the threat of a civil war, the President has called for self-control and


    The teaching profession calls for a lot of patience.

    19. on the grounds of/on.., grounds: for reasons of

    Examples: She is suing the company on the grounds of unfair dismissal.

    John was not employed by the company on the grounds of his age. 20. resistance: opposition (followed by to)

    Examples: There is strong resistance to the plan for a new chemical plant in this area.

    Any attempt to influence our decision will be met with the strongest resistance. 21. vote: express one’s choice in favor of (a person, political party, etc.) at an election (used in the

    pattern: vote on sth.; vote for / against)

    Examples: If we can’t agree with each other about the plan, let’s vote on it.

    They will vote for George Bush, I think.

    The board of school has voted by an overwhelming majority to suspend its curriculum


    22. run/go against the grain: be contrary to one’s desire or feeling (followed by of sth./to do sth.)

    Examples: It really goes against the grain to have to go to school on National Day.

    Privatization goes against the grain of their principle of opposition to private ownership

    of industry.


中山大学南方学院大英部 全新版大学英语二册教案Unit 8

    23. contemporary: current; modern

    Examples: She has worked in both classical and contemporary dance.

    I like my furniture to be in a contemporary style.

    24. worship: feel great love and admiration for (sb./ sth.), esp to such an extent that one can’t see

    their/its faults

    Examples: Being competent and learned, he was worshipped by his students.

    Humans have worshipped the sun throughout the ages.

    25. to the point of: to a degree that can be described as

    Examples: The salesman’s manner was abrupt to the point of rudeness.

    To accomplish the task, the employer worked his staff to the point of exhaustion. 26. excess: more than the reasonable degree or amount of sth.

    Examples: Children are not allowed to see the film as there is an excess of violence in it.

    He smoked like a chimney. It was the excess of cigarettes that caused his death. 27. nothing more than: just the same as; only

    Examples: Don’t be scared. It is nothing more than a nightmare.

    You needn’t report to him. He is nothing more than a clerk.

    28. current: occurring in or existing at the present time

    Examples: In comparison to the former ones, Coca-Cola’s current advertising campaign is

    more attractive and effective.

    The current economic situation is very different from that in 1990. 29. debate: discussion or argument in which people express their different opinions (followed by


    Examples: There has been much debate about the cloning of human beings.

    An intense debate on cease-fire talks with the Palestinians was going on within the

    Israeli government.


    Examples: The United Nations Security Council will debate the issue of Afghanistan today. 30. rage: continue with great force; be intense

     Examples: Price inflation still rages although the government has taken some measures to tackle the


    Street fighting raged all over the city.

    31. work one’s way: manage to reach or go through; make efforts to attain one’s goal

    Examples: As my family couldn’t pay that much for me to go to school, I have to work my

    way through law school.

    The board are still working their way through the application forms. 32. come through: experience, survive or overcome (a difficulty, etc.)

    Examples: It’s a miracle that some of the people working in the World Trade Center came through


中山大学南方学院大英部 全新版大学英语二册教案Unit 8

    the terrorist attacks.

    The Chinese football team was in trouble at the beginning of the match but in the

    end it came through.

    If we can come through this financial crisis the company’s future will be bright.

    33. in part: to some extent; partly

    Examples: His failure was due in part to his laziness.

    Whether you will be sent to Yale University for further study depends in part on

    how well you perform in the exam.

    34. ridiculous: absurd

    Examples: It is ridiculous to spend all her salary buying that so-called antique.

    It is ridiculous that they should want to wait ten hours just to have a look at their

    favorite film star.

    35. deny: 1) refuse to grant or allow (used in the pattern: deny sb. sth.)

    Examples: The kid was denied the chance of going to school.

    His ex-wife denied him access to his children.

    2) state sth. is not true (used in the pattern: deny sth.; deny that; deny doing sth.)

    Examples: When the police asked her neighbors questions, they all denied ever having seen her.

    In court the suspect denied that he had been involved in the robbery. 36. as much as the next man: as much as the average person

    as good, well, etc. as the next man: as good, well, etc. as the average person

    Example: I can enjoy a joke as well as the next man, but this joke is going too far. 37. similarly: in a similar way

    Examples: He was late and his girlfriend was similarly delayed.

    Twins often dress similarly.

    38. But it is no more than that: But its importance should not be exaggerated.

    39. distinction: difference (followed by between)

    Examples: It’s hard to draw a distinction between popular and serious literature.

    There is no distinction between courage and bravery.

    In their education proposals they made a clear distinction between academic and

    practical training.

    40. bind: tie or fasten; tie together

    Examples: The criminal bound the woman’s hands together behind her back.

    When the police rushed into the room, they found that all the hostages had been

    bound and left in the corner.

    41. accommodation: the process of adapting; adjustment

    Examples: Mutual accommodation is of importance especially to newly married couples.

    It is necessary to seek accommodation from both sides in the dispute.


中山大学南方学院大英部 全新版大学英语二册教案Unit 8

    42. threat: a danger that sth. unpleasant might happen to sb. (followed by to / from / of / against)

    Examples: There have been death threats against the witnesses.

    The Hurricane Center warns people not to take the threat of tropical storms lightly.

    The President said that he would stand firm and not give in to the threats from terrorists.

    The newly built Wal-Mart will be a threat to the local supermarkets. 43. fatal: causing death; bringing ruin

     Examples: The doctor said the patient was suffering from a fatal disease.

     He made a fatal mistake of giving her his telephone number.

    44. concern: 1) thing that is important or interesting to sb.

     Examples: What are your main concerns as a college student?

     It’s no concern of mine. (I am not involved in it or I have no responsibility for it.)

     2) worry, anxiety (followed by for / about / over / that)

    Examples: Public concern about corruption has drawn the local government’s attention.

    Our main concern is that students from underdeveloped areas are not receiving

    enough education.

    There was growing concern over the rise in unemployment.

    45. sake: purpose; benefit or well-being (used in the pattern: for sb.’s / sth.’s sake; for the sake of)

    Examples: He changed into old shoes for the sake of comfort.

    I’m studying history for its own sake, not because it will help me get a job.

    She argues for the sake of arguing. (i.e. because she likes arguing)


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