Unit 69 - Over The Moon

Unit 69 - Over The Moon


You know the world of English is a fun and exciting place to be. I’m so glad you could join me for another lesson.

Hi everybody, this is Misterduncan in England, how are you today? Are you okay? I hope so! Are you happy? I hope so!

In this  lesson we will be taking a look at a special object. Something  that at any time can be seen somewhere in the world, especially at night.

It is not down here on earth, but high up above us. It may be far away, yet it has the ability to affect us all, in one way or another.

In today’s lesson we are literally going out of this world, to take a look at…the moon

Over the moon

Take a look up into the sky on a clear night and you may see an object that has fascinated mankind for thousand of years. The moon is a common sight, but it is one that most people tend to take for granted or worse still- ignore all together.

Since the early ages the moon’s significance has changed, from superstitious curiosity, scientific wonder and as a way of making the passing of time, in every part of mankind’s history, the moon has made its presence known in one way or another.

The moon itself is barren. The surface is dusty, rocky and dry. From the earth it is easy to see how uneven the landscape there is. The surface of the moon is covered in hundreds of craters. A crater is a partial hole. It is a mark left on something that has been struck hard by a solid object.

The ‘far side’ of the moon has many more craters than the ‘near side’. This is because the far side is more vulnerable.

During the early days of the moon, its surface was bombarded by huge chunks of flying rock. The so- called moon soil found on the surface is in fact rock dust, created during that time.

The near side had several large smooth areas, known as ‘seas’, although they do not contain water. They were formed by large molten lava lakes, which later solidified the moon cooled.

The earth and the moon have two very distinct things in common. First they both go around something. The earth goes around the sun and the moon goes around the earth.

The motion is call the ‘orbit’. This word relates to the circular path that the object in question takes as it moves.

The other similarity is that both the earth and the moon rotate as they orbit. They both revolve. This movement is what gives us our days and nights.

However the moon revolves at around the same speed as it orbits the earth and because of this, we can only see one side of it.

This particular side of the moon always looks the same. The other side of the moon is referred to as the ‘far side’ or the ‘dark side’.
Nowadays most people refer to it as the ‘far side’, due to the fact that both sides of the moon receive exactly the same amount of light. In total, only 60% of the moon is ever visible to us.

Some facts and figures about the moon. This distance the moon and the earth is just under 239,000 miles. The moon takes 27 days 7 hours and 43 minutes to go around the earth.

The same area of the moon always faces us. This is because of its synchronous rotation.
As the moon and earth move around the sun, the amount of light reflecting from the lunar surface to us changes.

The moon’s gravity is 6 times weaker than the earth’s. The English word ‘lunatic’ comes form the belief that the full moon made people crazy. Lunar is the Latin word for moon. Lunar was also the Greek Goddess of the moon.

Just as the earth pulls on the moon, so the moon pulls on the earth. The slight gravitational drag of the moon pulls our oceans towards it, thus creating the tides here on earth.

The moon is slowly moving away from us at a rate of 3.9 centimeters per year. The moon’s rotation is not stable. It has a slight wobble as it spins. This is because the moon is much heavier on one side.

Sometimes the earth will move directly between the sun and the moon. The shadow of the earth passing in front of the moon can clearly be seen during this time. This event is called an ‘eclipse’ .

Sometimes the eclipse is only partial, while on other occasions the moon becomes completely hidden and obscured. This is called a ‘total lunar eclipse’. There is also a total solar eclipse, which is when the moon moves directly across the sun, blocking out all of the sunlight for a short while.

One of the biggest points of interest concerning the moon, is whether or not there is water there. From what we know so far, the surface seem to have no water whatsoever.

However there have been traces of water minerals found on the surface, near craters. Pointing to the possibility that water may have existed there in the past.
Another theory is that water may in fact be present below the surface. Investigations into this possibility are still taking place.
One thing is for sure, the more we discover about the moon, the more questions we find ourselves asking about it.

There are many ways to observe the moon. You can use a telescope, like this one. And get really close up to it. With a telescope you will be able to see the details of the lunar surface.

Or you can use a pair of binoculars. They are not as powerful as a telescope but you will still be able to see the surface, but in not so much detail.
If you don’t have either of these things, then you can simple look up and observe it with the ‘naked eye’. Naked eye means to look at something without it being magnified or zoomed in on.

The best time to look at the moon is at night; however, it is possible to see it at certain times during the day too.
As I have mentioned before, the moon is not always fully visible to us. This is due to the angle of the moon and its position in relation to the sun. As the moon orbits the earth a shadow is slowly cast over it. This change is known as the ‘phases’.

When the near side of the moon faces away from the sun, it seems to disappear. Then as the near side turns towards the sun again, the moon starts to reappear.
These phases can be used to measure the passing of time. One complete phase is known as a lunar cycle, or a lunar month. It is worth remembering that a ‘lunar’ month is not the same as a ‘solar’ month.

Lunar months are slightly shorter, and because of this, they occur at different times of the year (each year).
The lunar year is still observed in some countries, for example- in China.
The lunar new year has been followed by the Chinese for thousands of years. With each new lunar year, big celebration takes place, during what is known as ‘Spring festival’.

New cloths are bought, families get together and exchange gifts. Red envelops containing money are given to children.

Lots of delicious food us eaten, including many traditional rice dishes. Red decorations are placed on the fronts of houses. Each lunar year has its animal symbol. For example- the symbol of 2011 was the rabbit, the symbol for 2013 will be the snake…  and the symbol for 2012 is…can you guess? Yes 2012 is the year of the …dragon, and it began on January 23rd.

Some more interesting facts about the moon. The mythical power of the ‘full’ moon has been used many times in folklore. Such as the werewolf, which is a human that turns into a wolf-like beast during a  full moon.

The moon is seen as a romantic symbol. Taking a walk on a moonlit night with the love of your life is seen as a very romantic activity indeed.
People used to believe that a man lived in the moon because the markings on the surface facing us, resemble a man’s face. The first man to walk on the moon was the American astronaut Neil Armstrong in 1969.

There have been 6 moon landings in total. The last one took place in 1972. The general study of planets and stars is called ‘astronomy’. The study of how stars were formed and how they behave is called ‘astrophysics’.

The moon is not a planet, although some people have in the past classed it as one.
Every 100 years, the earth’s rotation is being slowed by the moon at the rate of 1.5 milliseconds.

There are some English idioms relating to the moon. ‘Over the moon’ - to feel happy and elated over something.

‘Once in a blue moon’- an occurrence that almost never happens. An event that seldom occurs.
‘ask for the moon’ – to make an impossible request. To ask for something that cannot be done. ‘promise someone the moon’ – to make an outlandish or absurd offer. To make a promise that cannot be kept.

Mmm…look what I’ve got here…a delicious piece of ‘mooncake’.

It’s now time to come back down to earth, as we have reached the end of another lesson.

This is Misterduncan in England saying thank you for watching me, teaching you. Whether you follow the sun or the moon to mark your time, I hope that time is spent well and that you enjoy yourself, whatever you happen to be doing.

See you again for another lesson and of course, ta-ta for now. Mmm..delicious

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Sentence explanation:

1.From what we know so far, the surface seem to have no water whatsoever. .

So far: cho đến nay, cũng thường được dùng trong các câu thì hoàn thành.

Seem: có vẻ như, dường như. surface: bề mặt

whatsoever: = whatever: bất cứ cái gì, dù cho như thế nào.

=> Cho đến nay như chúng ta được biết thì trên bề mặt mặt trăng không có dấu hiệu tồn tại của nước ở bất cứ dạng thức nào.

2. It’s now time to come back down to earth, as we have reached the end of another lesson.

Trong câu trên:

It's time: Đã đến lúc làm gì. It's (about/ high) time to do sth hoặc It's (about/ high) time Sb did sth . It's (about/ high) to go home = It's (about/ high) time you went home. (Đến lúc cậu về nhà rồi đó.)

Down to earth: Đen & bóng: trở về mặt đất, trở về với hiện thực.

Come back: quay trở lại

Reach the end of sth: kết thúc cái gì đó, cái gì đó đã kết thúc.

=> Bây giờ đã đến lúc quay trở về trái đất thân yêu của chúng ta, vì chúng ta đã vừa mới kết thúc bài học rồi.

3. The earth and the moon have two very distinct things in common.

The earth: trái đất. The moon: mặt trăng. các thiên thể, hoặc sự vật chỉ tính duy nhất thì thường có 'the' trước nó.

Distinct: Riêng biệt, khác biệt, dễ nhận thấy.

Have sth in common: có điểm chung.

=> Trái đất và mặt trăng có hai điểm chung rất dễ nhận thấy.

Quảng cáo

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