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Great Britain: General Acquaintance.




ВОЛГОГРАДСКИЙ ГОСУДАРСТВЕННЫЙ ТЕХНИЧЕСКИЙ УНИВЕРСИТЕТ

(ВолгГТУ)

Кафедра иностранных языков

 

ВЕЛИКОБРИТАНИЯ.

 

Методические указания для студентов всех форм обучения

 

Волгоград, 2000г.

ББК – Ш 143. 21 – 92.

Великобритания:Методические указания для студентов всех форм обучения. / Новоженина Е.В., Леднева О.В., Багметова Н.В., Маркова О.В., Игнатенко О.М. / ВолгГТУ, Волгоград, 2000 - 32с.

 

 

Методические указания предназначены для студентов всех специальностей и всех форм обучения. Методические указания содержат обширный страноведческий материал по теме Великобритания. Особое внимание уделяется информации, связанной с географическим положением Великобритании, ее государственным устройством, экономикой и явлениями общественной жизни.

В каждом разделе представлен текстовый материал и разнообразные упражнения, целью которых является развитие коммуникативных умений.

 

Рецензент: кандидат педагогических наук Митина А.М.

 

 

Печатается по решению редакционно-издательского совета

Волгоградского государственного технического университета.

 

©Волгоградский государственный технический университет, 2000.

UNIT I.

Great Britain: General Acquaintance.

Read and translate.

Text A.

 

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is situated on the British Isles lying to the north-west of Europe .The British Isles consist of two large islands, Great Britain and Ireland, and some five thousand small islands. The country is usually called simply Great Britain.

The United Kingdom is one of the world’s smaller countries (it is twice smaller than France or Spain), with an area of some 244,110 sq. km.

The United Kingdom is made up of four parts: England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Their capitals are London, Cardiff, Edinburgh and Belfast respectively. Great Britain consists of England, Scotland and Wales and doesn’t include Northern Ireland. The capital of the UK is London.

Great Britain is separated from the European continent by the North Sea and the English Channel, the narrower part of which is called the Strait of Dover. From the west the UK is washed by the Atlantic Ocean, from the east by the stormy North Sea and the southern coast is washed by the English Channel. The Irish Sea lies between England and Ireland.

The climate, in general, is mild, chilly, and often wet. Rain or overcast skies can be expected for up to 300 days per year. These conditions make Britain lush and green, known for a variety of scenery found on such a small area: a low-lying land and hilly areas, flat fields as well as lofty mountains. The surface of Eastern England is flat. Scotland and Wales are hilly and mountainous. The mountains are not very high as compared with those of the world, the loftiest one - Ben Nevis (Scotland) - is only 4400 feet (1343m) in height. In the west the Cambrian Mountains occupy the greater part of Wales; in the north - the Cheviot Hills separate England from Scotland, the Pennines - to the south of the Cheviot Hills and Cumbrian Mountains are famous for the number and beauty of their lakes. There are sixteen lakes here and this part of the country, called the Lake District, is the most beautiful and the wettest part of Great Britain.

There are many rivers in Britain but very few of them are navigable except near the mouth for anything but smaller vessels. Many of the rivers have been connected with each other by means of canals. The principal rivers are the Severn, the Thames and the Trent. The Severn is the longest river in Britain but the Thames is the most important one. The Severn is 210 miles in length, the Thames is a little over 200 miles.

The seas surrounding the British Isles are shallow - usually less than 300 feet deep. The shallowness is in some way an advantage. Shallow water is warmer than deep water and helps to keep the shores from extreme cold. It is too the home of plenty of fish, a million tons of which are caught every year. Britain’s coastline contains numerous harbours serving as convenient ports, among which are London, Liverpool, Glasgow, Portsmouth and others.

Britain has the richest energy sources in the European Union (EU), and its abundant resources of oil and natural gas which were discovered in the North Sea off the eastern coast of Britain in 1969 are of vital importance to the British economy. Britain also has a number of nuclear energy facilities. Recently much research has been devoted to developing biofuels, solar energy, wind power, and waterpower.

The population of Great Britain (1996 estimate) is 58,489,975. The largest cities in Great Britain are London, Birmingham, Manchester, Sheffield, Leeds and Glasgow.

Great Britain is highly developed economically, preeminent in the arts and sciences, sophisticated in technology, and highly prosperous and peaceful. In general, British subjects belong to one of the more affluent states of Europe and enjoy a high standard of living compared to the rest of the world.

Exercise 1. Finish up the sentences according to the model:

Englishmen live in England, they speak English.

.........................in Scotland ..............................

.........................in Ireland................................. .

.........................in Wales .................................. . .........................in Sweden ............................... .

.........................in Spain ................................... .

.........................in Denmark .............................. . .........................in Holland ................................ .

.........................in Switzerland .......................... .

 

Exercise 2. Pick out from Text A synonyms of the following.

To contain, to name, to form, to divide, near, shore, prosperous, too, ship, suitable, lofty, crucial, well-known, several.

 

Exercise 3. Pick out from Text A antonyms of the following.

Far, deep, low, wide, to stand, disadvantage, mountainous, northern, dry, artificial, poor, small.

 

Exercise 4.Translate the following sentences into Russian and make up your own ones about the country (city) you live in using the italicized words and phrases.

The north of Scotland is mountainous and is called the Highlands, while the south, which has beautiful valleys and plains, is called the Lowlands.

The shallow waters surrounding the island provide excellent fishing grounds. The mild climate, ample rain and long growing season in Britain support a great variety of plants, which grow exceptionally well.

Great Britain’s western coast tends to be warmer than the eastern coast, and the southern regions tend to be warmer than the northern regions.

The mean annual temperature in the far north of Scotland is 6° C (43° F), and in warmer southwestern England it is 11° C (52° F).

1) Winds blowing off the Atlantic Ocean bring clouds and large amounts of moisture to the British Isles.

2) As the world's first industrialized society, Britain has a long history of dealing with environmental problems.

3) Britain has a diverse population that includes people with connections to every continent of the world.

 

Exercise 5. Answer the questions.

1) The UK is an island state, isn’t it? Where is it situated?

2) What countries is the UK made up of? What are their capitals?

3) What are the names of the waters washing the coasts of the British Isles?

4) Why is the climate of Great Britain mild?

5) What are the names of the mountains and where are they situated?

6) Are there a lot of long and deep rivers?

7) Why is the shallowness in some way an advantage?

8) What are the mineral and natural resources of Great Britain?

9) How many people live in Great Britain?

10) What can you say about the standard of living in this country?

 

Read the advertisement below for touring the Hope Valley line.

 

Text B.

 

Exercise 2. Write a similar advertisement for some place in your region or country.

 

Exercise 3. Bring two pictures or postcards showing some English scenery. Describe what there is in the pictures, what feelings you have about the views.

Exercise 4. Describe (in writing) a sight or a view that once struck you as picturesque, beautiful or unusual.

Exercise 5. Discuss the following topics (use the map and some additional sources of information):

1) Physical background of Great Britain.

2) English scenery and climate.

3) Big cities of Great Britain.

4) Four parts of the country.

UNIT II.

The Political System.

Read and translate.

Text A.

The United Kingdom is a constitutional (or parliamentary) monarchy without a written constitution. The country has a monarch (a king or a queen) as its Head of State. The monarch has very little power and can only reign with the support of parliament. Parliament consists of two chambers known as the House of Lords and the House of Commons. Parliament and the monarch have different roles in the government of the country, and they only meet together on symbolic occasions such as the coronation of a new monarch or the opening of Parliament. In reality, the House of Commons is the only one of the three which has true power. It is here that new bills are introduced and debated. If the majority of the members are in favour of a bill it goes to the House of Lords to be debated and finally to the monarch to be signed. Only then does it become law. Although a bill must be supported by all three bodies, the House of Lords only has limited powers, and the monarch has not refused to sign one since the modern political system began over 200 years ago.

“Her Most Excellent Majesty Elizabeth the Second by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and of Her other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith” is the official Head of State and, for many people, a symbol of the unity of the nation. For a thousand years England (and later the whole of the United Kingdom) has been united under one sovereign. The hereditary principal still operates and the Crown is passed on to the sovereign’s eldest son (or daughter if there are no sons).

The Queen has a certain role in state affairs, not only through her ceremonial functions, such as opening Parliament, but also because she meets the Prime Minister every week and receives copies of all Cabinet papers. Functions of the Sovereign are as follows:

- opening and closing Parliament;

- approving of the appointment of the Prime Minister;

- giving her Royal Assent to bills;

- Head of the Commonwealth;

- Head of the Church of England;

- Commander-in-Chief of the armed Forces.

The House of Lords has more than 1,000 members, although only about 250 take an active part in the work of the House. The chairman of the House of Lords is the Lord Chancellor, who sits on the Woolsack.

The House of Lords like the Monarch has now lost most of its powers and cannot influence the process of decision-making in Parliament. In practice, the powers of the House of Lords have been truncated to limited revising and delaying functions. Members of the House of Lords debate a bill after it has been passed by the House of Commons. Changes may be recommended, and agreement between the two Houses is reached by negotiation. The Lord’s main power consists of being able only to delay non-financial bills passed by the House of Commons for a period of a few months, but they can also introduce certain types of bills. One of the oldest functions of the House of Lords is judicial. It works as the highest and final Court of Appeal.

The two Houses of Parliament, the Lords and the Commons share the same building, the Palace of Westminster.

The House of Commons is made up of 650 elected members, known as Members of Parliament, or MPs. The Commons debating chamber, usually called “the House”, and has seats for only about 370 MPs. They are elected by popular vote and represent the counties and borough constituencies.

The House of Commons is presided over by the Speaker. A Speaker is customarily reappointed to his office in each new Parliament. As soon as a party member becomes a Speaker he must abandon party politics.

The life of Parliament is divided into periods called “sessions’. A session normally lasts for about a year, from late October of one year to about the same date of the next year. MPs have holidays of about four weeks over Christmas, two weeks each at Easter and Whitsun, and about eleven weeks – from early August to midOctober – in the summer.

The beginning of a new session, called “the State Opening of Parliament”, is a fine ceremonial occasion, beginning with the royal procession from Buckingham Palace to the Palace of Westminster.

The United Kingdom is divided into 650 parliamentary constituencies, each with an electorate of about 60,000 voters. Each constituency is represented by one Member of Parliament in the House of Commons. The main political parties are usually represented at the elections and sometimes candidates representing minority parties stand. The winner is the candidate who gets more votes than any other single candidate.

The leader of the party with most votes becomes Prime Minister and forms a government, which can remain in power for up to five years. The second biggest party becomes the official Opposition. Its leader forms a “Shadow Cabinet”.

The Prime Minister chooses the date of the next General elections, but doesn’t have to wait until the end of five years. Voting takes place on Polling Day. The national result is known by the next morning at the latest.

As soon as it is clear that one party has a majority of seats in the House of Commons, its leader is formally invited by the Sovereign to form a government. The modern government is arranged in about fifteen departments each with a minister at its head. Normally, all the heads of the departments are members of the House of Commons, though sometimes one is in the House of Lords. They form the cabinet, which meets about once a week in Number 10 Downing Street, a rather ordinarylooking house, which also contains the Prime Minister’s personal office.

 

Read and translate.

Text B.

The Political Parties.

 

The British democratic system depends on political parties and there has been a party system of some kind since the 17th century. The Conservative and the Liberal parties are the oldest and until the last years of the 19th century they were the only parties elected to the House of Commons.

The Conservatives, often called the Tories, have always been the party of the Right, the party of big business, industry, commerce and landowners. It can broadly be described as the party of the middle and upper classes although it does receive some working class support. The party represents those who believe in private enterprise as opposed to state-owned undertakings. The Tories are the most powerful party and are often called a party of business directors. (The word “Tories” is an Irish name for thieves and was applied to the Conservatives by their opponents, but later they adopted the name to describe themselves).

The Tories were opposed by the Whigs, a rude name for cattle drivers. In the middle of the 19th century the Liberal Party (or the Whigs) represented the trading and manufacturing classes. Its slogan of that time was “Civil and Religious Liberty”. During the second half of the 19th century many working people looked at the Liberal Party as an alternative to the Conservatives and their policy. At the end of the 19th century and in the first two decades of the 20th century, the Liberals lost the support of working – class voters.

Around 1900 the Labour Party was formed as the political arm of the trade unions. It was the party that drew away working people’s support. The Labour Party has always had strong links with the trade unions and receives financial support from them. While many Labour voters are middle-class or intellectuals, the traditional Labour Party support is still strongest in industrial areas.

There are also some other parties:the Social Democratic Party, the Liberal Democrats. The Green Party, The Communist Party, the National Front, the Scottish National Party and the Welsh National Party.

Exercise 6.Role play.

Work in two groups, one - acting MPs supporting the bills to be introduced the other – rejecting it. Discuss all pros and cons of the bills given below, and give your arguments:

 

- The UK accepting the “Euro” as payment.

- Cancelling the heredity principal of Lords as MPs.

- Restrictions of monarch’s powers in the UK.

- Efficiency of the multi-party system.

 

UNIT III.

Economic Outline of the UK.

Read and translate.

Text A.

 

The UK is a highly-developed country. It lives by manufacture and trade. For every person employed in agriculture eleven people are employed in mining, manufacturing and building. The United Kingdom is one of the world’s largest exporters of manufactured goods per head of population.

Apart from coal and iron ore Britain has very few natural resources and mostly depends on imports. Its agriculture provides only half of the food it needs. The other half and most of the raw materials for its industries such as oil and various metals (copper, zinc, uranium ore and others) have to be imported. Britain also has to import timber, cotton, fruit and farm products.

Britain used to be richly forested, but most of the forests were cut down to make more room for cultivation. The greater part of land is used for cattle and sheep breeding, and pig raising. Among the crops grown on the farms are wheat, barley and oats. The fields are mainly in the eastern part of the country.

In the past century Britain secured a leading position in the world as manufacturer, merchant and banker. After World War I the world demand for products of Britain’s traditional industries - textiles, coal and machinery - fell off, and Britain began expanding trade in new engineering products and electrical goods.

The crisis of 1929-1933 brought about mass unemployment and Britain’s share in the world industrial output decreased. World War II brought about a further weakening of Britain’s might. It has lost its colonies which used to supply it with cheap raw materials.

The original basis of British industry was coal-mining, and the early factories grew up not far from the main mining areas. Glasgow and Newcastle became great centers of engineering and shipbuilding. Lancashire produced cotton goods and Yorkshire woolen, with Sheffield concentrating on iron and steel. Birmingham developed light engineering.

The structure of industry changed substantially in the last half of the 20th century. As coal production declined, oil production replaced it as a major industry. Motor vehicle production became a significant part of the industrial base. British industrial production also expanded into communications equipment, including fiber optics, computers, computer-controlled machine tools, and robots.

The so-called Silicon Glen between Glasgow and Edinburgh is the site of many overseas computer firms. Scotland and Northern Ireland are still noted for their production of whiskey and textiles, especially linen from Northern Ireland and tweed from Scotland.

Nowadays Britain remains an important manufacturing country. Britain mostly produces articles requiring skilled labour, such as precision instruments, electronic equipment, chemicals and high quality consumer goods. It produces and exports cotton and woolen goods, leather goods and articles made of various kinds of synthetic (man-made) materials. The leading traditional manufacturing regions of England are Greater London and the cities and regions around Manchester, Birmingham, Leeds, and Newcastle upon Tyne.

Britain has a large and sophisticated service sector. The service industries include finance, retailing, wholesaling, tourism, business services, transport, insurance, investment, advertising, public relations, market research, education, administration, and government and professional services. Telecommunications has become a dynamic growth industry, particularly with telex, facsimile, and e-mail communications.

 

Exercise 7. Role play.

The group of students is divided into two teams. The first one represents businessmen from England, Wales and Scotland. The other one – journalists from Russia. They are interviewing the businessmen about the industries developed in their countries.

Text B.

Read and translate

Dialogue.

This is the dialogue between Anna Smirnova, a Russian teacher of English, and Bernard Law, a London University lecturer. Anna is leaving London for Edinburgh next Saturday morning.

 

Anna: Bernard, could you do me a favour?

Bernard: Year, sure. I’ll be glad to if I can.

A.: Next Saturday morning I’m going to Edinburgh by car. What cities would you advise me to see on my way there?

B.: Well, it’s going to be a long journey. When are you expected in Edinburgh?

A.: Next Tuesday afternoon.

B.: Then you should try to see Northern England with Manchester, Leeds and Bradford and Midlands with Birmingham, Coventry and Sheffield. They are the most northwest industrial cities. A.: What are they famous for?

B.: Well, the wool industry is centred in Bradford and Leeds. Other industries of these cities include the making of locomotives, agricultural implements, heavy iron and steel goods of all kinds, chemicals, glass, leather goods, artificial silk and pottery.

A.: And what about Manchester?

B.: You see, it’s the centre of cotton industry with a population of nearly one million. The University of Manchester, founded in 1880, is famous for its modern studies.

A.: Ah... that’s worth knowing. And I’ve heard that the district of Birmingham is known as the Black Country. Is it really so heavily industrialized?

B.: Oh, sure. It is a land of factories and mines and it owes its importance to iron industry. Iron goes to the steel, heavy machinery and shipbuilding industries of Newcastle and other cities.

A.: I wonder how they transport all these goods to other cities and countries? As far as I know Birmingham doesn’t have outlet on the sea-coast and doesn’t stand on any great river.

B.: You’re right. The nearest port is Liverpool - the main port of western England. It is first in Great Britain in export and comes second after London in imports. But most of the goods are transported to London and then distributed to different parts of the world.

A.: Bernard, you’ve mentioned Coventry as one of the industrial cities of Midland and I’d love to do the sights of this town to tell my friends about this Volgograd’s twin city.

B.: I have never heard about it. How interesting! What do they have in common?

A.: Don’t you know? Both Volgograd and Coventry were badly destroyed during World War II. Nowadays these cities exchange delegations and their contribution to Russian-British cooperation is appreciable.

B.: Then you should try to visit this city. I suggest you should spend at least a few hours in Coventry and see the Cathedral.

A.: I certainly will. Oh, I’m afraid I’ve taken up too much of your time. Thank you very much. I really appreciate your help. B.: My pleasure. Enjoy your stay in Britain.

 

Exercise 1. Match English world with their Russian equivalents:

Railway carriages Автомобили
Motor cars горно-добывающая промышленность
Agricultural implements сельскохозяйственные орудия
Cutlery железнодорожные вагоны
Shipbuilding изделия из кожи
Leather goods изделия из стекла
Artificial silk Судостроение
Glass goods ножевые изделия
Mining искусственный шелк
Pottery гончарные изделия

 

Imagine that some of you are British students from London, Liverpool, Manchester, Birmingham, Sheffield, Leeds and the other are students from Volgograd. Discuss the industrial potential of the cities you come from.

UNIT IV.

LONDON

Read and translate.

Text A.

 

London is one of the most exciting and cosmopolitan cities in the world. To some – it is simply home, a place to live and work in, while to others who only visit – it means a city of history and culture, full of museums, galleries and historic buildings. But both visitors and residents appreciate its rich heritage, its fine architecture and amazing diversity of cultures. London’s most famous sights range from the historic Tower of London and the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace to the everyday views withits black cabs and red double-decker buses.

The heart of London is the City, the oldest area, which is rich in historic traditions. Today it is well known as one of the world’s leading financial and commercial centres, where all the major British and foreign banks and finance houses are represented.

The Tower of London comes first among the historic buildings of the City. If you want to get some glimpses of London it’s just from here that you had better start sightseeing. The Tower of London was founded by Julius Caesar and rebuilt in1066 by William the Conqueror. The Tower served as fortress, palace and state prison. Its history is associated withthe place of murder and execution. Now it is a museum of armour and attracts thousand of visitors. The large black ravens have a long association with the Tower; it is believed that if they ever disappear England will fall and that ill-fortune will befall anyone who harms them. Consequently they are very well cared for.

A twenty minutes walk from the Tower will take you to another historic building – St. Paul’s Cathedral, the greatest of English churches. It was built by a famous English architect Sir Christopher Wren, who spent 35 years of his life supervising every part of its construction. St. Paul’s Cathedral with its huge dome and rows of columns is considered to be a fine specimen of Renaissance architecture. Nelson and other great men of England are buried in the Cathedral.

Not far away, in Westminster another important part of London where most of the Government buildings are situated is Westminster Abbey. Many outstanding English statesmen, painters and poets with Newton, Darwin and Tennyson among them are buried here. Westminster Abbey has been the coronation place of all 39 English Kings and Queens since William the Conqueror in 1066.

Across the road from Westminster Abbey there is Westminster Palace, the seat of the British Parliament. Its two graceful towers stand high above the city. The higher of the two contains the largest clock in the country and the famous Big Ben. The name actually refers not to the clock tower or the clock itself but to the huge 13,5-ton bell that strikes every quarter of the hour.

If we walk along Whitehall which is not at all a hall but just a street where the chief government offices are to be found, we shall soon come to Trafalgar Square. It was so named in memory of the victory at the battle of Trafalgar, where on October 21, 1805 the English fleet under Nelson’s command defeated the combined fleet of France and Spain. The victory was won at the cost of Nelson’s life. In the middle of Trafalgar Square stands Nelson’s monument – a tall column with the figure of Nelson at its top. The column is guarded by four bronze lions. Nowadays Trafalgar Square is a favourite gathering place for both locals and visitors.

The fine building facing the square is the National Gallery and adjoining it (but just round the corner) is the Portrait Gallery.

Not far away is the British Museum – the biggest museum in London. It contains the priceless collection of different things: ancient manuscripts, coins, sculptures, etc. The British museum is famous for its library – one of the richest in the world.

Buckingham Palace has been the London residence of the Queen since the 18th century. It is around Buckingham Palace and nearby St James’s Palace that London’s most powerful pageantry takes place, where the sights of the daily Changing of the Guard, or the procession of Life Guards riding down the Mall cannot fail to attract attention.

And you cannot leave the city without visiting one more place of interest – Hyde Park (or “the Park” as Londoners call it) with Kensington Gardens adjoining it in the west is the largest in London. When you are walking along its shady avenues, sitting on the grass, admiring its beautiful flowerbeds or watching swans and ducks floating on the ponds, it seems almost unbelievable that all around there is a large city with its heavy traffic and smoke.

 

Text B. Sightseeing.

g -Is it possible to see anything of London in one or two days?

g- Well, yes, but of course not half enough.

g - What do you think I ought to see first?

g- Well, if you are interested in churches and historic places, you should go to Westminster Abby, the Houses of Parliament, St. Paul’s Cathedral and the Tower. Do you like art galleries? g- Rather!

g- Then, why not go to the National Gallery?

g- I’m told one ought to see the British Museum. Do you think I shall have time for that?

g- Well you might, but if I were you I should leave that for some other day.

You could spend a whole day there. It’s much too big to be seen in an hour or so.

g- I suppose it is. What about going to the Zoo?

g-That’s not a bad idea. You could spend a couple of hours there comfortably or even a whole afternoon, watching the wild animals, birds and reptiles.

g- Perhaps I’ll do that. How do I get there?

g- Let me see… I think your best way from here is to walk across Regent’s Park.

g- Is it much of a walk?

g- Oh, no a quarter of an hour or so, but if you are in a hurry, why not take a taxi?

g- I think I will. Oh, here’s one coming. Taxi! The Zoo, please.

 

Exercise 8. Role play. A group of guides suggests possible sightseeing routes about London to their office director commenting on the peculiarities of different historical places. Each one speaks in favour of his/her suggestion trying to convince both the director and the guides that the route is the best. In the end the participants of the talk choose the most appropriate route.

UNIT V.

Text A.

Exercise 6. Role play. The information given below contains different points of view of the American students on some aspects of social life in Great Britain. Read it and guess what they like or dislike about Britain. Imagine that you are American students who visited England. Discuss your likes and dislikes.

 

The British and the Americans speak the same language. But life in two nations can be very different….

 

‘The police. They’re very friendly and they don’t carry guns.’ Claude, Trenton. ‘The weather is awful. You don’t seem to get any summer heat. It’s winter all year round.’ Toni, San Francisco.

‘The tourists! The streets are so crowded. I think you should do something about them. And I can’t stand the litter everywhere. It’s a very dirty place.’ Jose, Washington.

‘Walking and sitting on the grass in the parks, especially on a hot summer’s day. Oh, and the green countryside. But why is the beer warm?’ Max, Houston.

‘Well, they certainly seem rather unfriendly. Nobody ever talk on the buses. But maybe we haven’t met any real English people yet.’ Eva, Niagara Falls.

‘Feeling safe when you walk the streets. Oh, and the polite drivers who stop at a street crossing if they see someone waiting there.’ Moon, Los Angeles.

‘Driving on the left. It’s very confusing. I keep looking the wrong way.’ Paula, San Diego.

 

Read and translate.

Text B.

Any Problems?

(Mr. Green has invited the students at the Summer School to bring their language problems to him. He, his wife and the students are talking after supper.)

Mario: We’ve all heard a lot of slang while we’ve been here. Should we learn it and use it?

Mr. Green: I don’t advise you to use it. It’s difficult to say whether you should learn its meaning. It depends on your aims in learning English. If you expect to talk to English people of all classes, then you’ll certainly hear a good deal of slang and you ought to learn the meanings of all slang words and expressions. If you want to listen to broadcasts in English and go to English talking films, you’ll find it useful to know something about slang. But if your chief aim is to read books on such subjects as medicine, economics or engineering, there’s no need at all to study slang. It would be a waste of time.

Emil: Why do you advise us not to use slang even if we learn it?

Mr. Green: Because it’s too difficult. You could learn the meaning of slang words and expressions without much difficulty, perhaps, but you’d almost certainly use them in the wrong way and to the wrong people. There’s schoolboys’ and schoolgirls’ slang. There’s Army slang and Air Force slang. Sailors have their own slang words and expressions. It’s the easiest thing in the world to learn a bit of slang and then to make yourself look silly by using it to the wrong people.

Mrs. Green: There’s another good reason for not using slang. It very quickly goes out of date. Slang’s always changing. You might learn a slang phrase that was in common use ten years ago. And if you used it today, you’d be laughed at.

Mario: So it’s much safer not to use slang.

Mrs. Green : Very much safer.

Anne: Slang is dangerous, I know. But there’s something else that worries me. How can I learn to talk English naturally? I don’t want to talk like a book.

Mr. Green: I know what you mean. You sometimes use words that you’ve learnt from your reading. And then sometimes someone tells you not to use them when you are speaking.

Rosa: Yes, that’s what happens to me. The other day I said, ‘I fear it’s going to rain.’ Mrs. Green told me not to say ‘fear’. She told me to say, ‘I’m afraid it’s going to rain.’

Mr. Green: Quite right, too. ‘Fear’, the verb, is not much used in speaking. That’s quite a difficult problem. You can learn a lot by reading modern English novels and plays. They must be modern, though. They’ll give you good examples of conversational English. But don’t always use the words that are the nearest to the words of your own language.

Hans: I’ve met a lot of Americans. Most of them say ‘Do you have’. I was taught to say ‘Have you’. Which is better?

Mr. Green: That’s another difficult question. ‘Do you have” is good American English in many sentences where English people would say /Have you’. If an American asks you, ‘Do you have any sisters or brothers?’, it’s quite correct, but it’s American English. If you go to America, use American English if you wish. But in this country we say, ‘Have you any brothers or sisters?’, or, more probably, ‘Have you got any brothers or sisters?’ ‘Have you got’ is very common in spoken English and it’s quite good English. It’s not at all slangy. Who’s got another question?

Lucille: When I first began listening to the B.B.C. broadcasts to France, I couldn’t understand ‘Here is the news’. I thought it ought to be ‘Here are the news’. I’ve learnt that ‘news’ is singular now, but I still find it difficult to understand why words like ‘news’, ‘advice’, ‘information’ and ‘furniture’ are never plural. They can be plural in French.

Mr. Green: You want to know how to recognize words of this kind, don’t you? The only way I can think of is to keep your eyes and ears open. When you see or hear them, notice how they are used. If they ‘re used with ‘much’ you mustn’t make them plural. ‘Not much news’, ‘not much advice’, ‘not much information’, that’s the way to remember them. Not by themselves, but with ‘not much’. Or you could learn them as ‘an item of news’, a piece of advice’, ‘an interesting bit of information’. ‘Knowledge’, ‘machinery’ and ‘poetry’ are other nouns that are never used in the plural.

Paul: And what’s the difference between ‘small’ and ‘little’? You crossed out ‘little’ in something I wrote for you last week and put ‘small’ instead.

Mr. Green: Yes, I remember, I didn’t explain my correction. I ought to have done so. Can anyone suggest an answer?

Pedro: Don’t we use ‘little’ when we want to suggest a sentiment of some sort?

Mr. Green: That’s right. I’ll give you some examples. Suppose you want to buy a house. You might advertise in the paper for ‘a small house in the country’. You’d use the word ‘small’, not the word ‘little’. You get replies to the advertisement and you go to see the house. What do you say if you like it? You might say, ‘Oh, what a delightful little house!’ or perhaps, ‘Oh, what a nice little garden it has!’ “Little’, you see, is used with adjectives that show feeling. We speak of ‘small letters’ and ‘capital letters’, don’t we? Never ‘little letters’. We have no feeling about the alphabet.

Mrs. Green: We have three small children at home. If you met them, you might say, ‘Oh, what nice little children!’ Or ‘Aren’t they naughty little children!’ Olga: I’m sure they’re nice little children, Mrs. Green.

 

UNIT VI.

Список использованной литературы.

1. Timanovskaya N. Spotlight on Great Britain. Tula, 1998.

2. Freeman J., Sharpe S. This Beautiful City London. 1990.

3. Hewitt K. Understanding Britain. Oxford, 1994.

4. Greenall S., Reward Pre-intermediate. Teacher's Book, Oxford,1994.

5. Khannikova L. Spoken English. M, 1991.

6. Hornby A.S. Oxford Progressive English for Adult Learners, 1992.

 

Леднева Ольга Вячеславовна

Багметова Нонна Васильевна

Маркова Ольга Васильевна

Игнатенко Ольга Михайловна

 

Редактор Л.П. Кузнецова

 

Темплан 2000 г. поз. № __

 

Подписано в печать __________ Формат 60 x 84 1/ 16.

Бумага газетная. Печать офсетная. Усл. печ.л.

Уч.- изд.л. Тираж 500 экз. Заказ

 

Волгоградский государственный технический университет 400131 Волгоград, пр. Ленина, 28.

 

РПК «Политехник» Волгоградского государственного технического университета. 400131 Волгоград, ул. Советская, 35.

ВОЛГОГРАДСКИЙ ГОСУДАРСТВЕННЫЙ ТЕХНИЧЕСКИЙ УНИВЕРСИТЕТ

(ВолгГТУ)

Кафедра иностранных языков

 

ВЕЛИКОБРИТАНИЯ.

 

Методические указания для студентов всех форм обучения

 

Волгоград, 2000г.

ББК – Ш 143. 21 – 92.

Великобритания:Методические указания для студентов всех форм обучения. / Новоженина Е.В., Леднева О.В., Багметова Н.В., Маркова О.В., Игнатенко О.М. / ВолгГТУ, Волгоград, 2000 - 32с.

 

 

Методические указания предназначены для студентов всех специальностей и всех форм обучения. Методические указания содержат обширный страноведческий материал по теме Великобритания. Особое внимание уделяется информации, связанной с географическим положением Великобритании, ее государственным устройством, экономикой и явлениями общественной жизни.

В каждом разделе представлен текстовый материал и разнообразные упражнения, целью которых является развитие коммуникативных умений.

 

Рецензент: кандидат педагогических наук Митина А.М.

 

 

Печатается по решению редакционно-издательского совета

Волгоградского государственного технического университета.

 

©Волгоградский государственный технический университет, 2000.

UNIT I.

Great Britain: General Acquaintance.

Read and translate.

Text A.

 

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is situated on the British Isles lying to the north-west of Europe .The British Isles consist of two large islands, Great Britain and Ireland, and some five thousand small islands. The country is usually called simply Great Britain.

The United Kingdom is one of the world’s smaller countries (it is twice smaller than France or Spain), with an area of some 244,110 sq. km.

The United Kingdom is made up of four parts: England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Their capitals are London, Cardiff, Edinburgh and Belfast respectively. Great Britain consists of England, Scotland and Wales and doesn’t include Northern Ireland. The capital of the UK is London.

Great Britain is separated from the European continent by the North Sea and the English Channel, the narrower part of which is called the Strait of Dover. From the west the UK is washed by the Atlantic Ocean, from the east by the stormy North Sea and the southern coast is washed by the English Channel. The Irish Sea lies between England and Ireland.

The climate, in general, is mild, chilly, and often wet. Rain or overcast skies can be expected for up to 300 days per year. These conditions make Britain lush and green, known for a variety of scenery found on such a small area: a low-lying land and hilly areas, flat fields as well as lofty mountains. The surface of Eastern England is flat. Scotland and Wales are hilly and mountainous. The mountains are not very high as compared with those of the world, the loftiest one - Ben Nevis (Scotland) - is only 4400 feet (1343m) in height. In the west the Cambrian Mountains occupy the greater part of Wales; in the north - the Cheviot Hills separate England from Scotland, the Pennines - to the south of the Cheviot Hills and Cumbrian Mountains are famous for the number and beauty of their lakes. There are sixteen lakes here and this part of the country, called the Lake District, is the most beautiful and the wettest part of Great Britain.

There are many rivers in Britain but very few of them are navigable except near the mouth for anything but smaller vessels. Many of the rivers have been connected with each other by means of canals. The principal rivers are the Severn, the Thames and the Trent. The Severn is the longest river in Britain but the Thames is the most important one. The Severn is 210 miles in length, the Thames is a little over 200 miles.

The seas surrounding the British Isles are shallow - usually less than 300 feet deep. The shallowness is in some way an advantage. Shallow water is warmer than deep water and helps to keep the shores from extreme cold. It is too the home of plenty of fish, a million tons of which are caught every year. Britain’s coastline contains numerous harbours serving as convenient ports, among which are London, Liverpool, Glasgow, Portsmouth and others.

Britain has the richest energy sources in the European Union (EU), and its abundant resources of oil and natural gas which were discovered in the North Sea off the eastern coast of Britain in 1969 are of vital importance to the British economy. Britain also has a number of nuclear energy facilities. Recently much research has been devoted to developing biofuels, solar energy, wind power, and waterpower.

The population of Great Britain (1996 estimate) is 58,489,975. The largest cities in Great Britain are London, Birmingham, Manchester, Sheffield, Leeds and Glasgow.

Great Britain is highly developed economically, preeminent in the arts and sciences, sophisticated in technology, and highly prosperous and peaceful. In general, British subjects belong to one of the more affluent states of Europe and enjoy a high standard of living compared to the rest of the world.

Exercise 1. Finish up the sentences according to the model:

Englishmen live in England, they speak English.

.........................in Scotland ..............................

.........................in Ireland................................. .

.........................in Wales .................................. . .........................in Sweden ............................... .

.........................in Spain ................................... .

.........................in Denmark .............................. . .........................in Holland ................................ .

.........................in Switzerland .......................... .

 





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