Session 3

Penguins have a distinctive walk, or ‘waddle’. Today we discover the scientific theory that explains why penguins waddle.
ፐንጕን ፍሉይ ዓይነት ኣከያይዳ ኣለወን። ኣብ ናይ ሎሚ መደብና፡ ፐንጕን ስለምንታይ ዕንክይክይ እናበላ ከም ዝኸዳ ብሳይንሳዊ ክልሰ ሓሳብ ዝገልጽ መግለጺ ክንርኢ ኢና።

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    Activity 1

Activity 1

Why do penguins waddle?

Penguins are lovable creatures that can instantly be recognised by their distinctive walk, or ‘waddle’. Today we discover the scientific theory that explains why penguins waddle.

ተፈተወቲ ፍጡራት ፐንጕን ብፍሉይ ኣከያይደኣን ብቐሊሉ ይፍለጣ። ኣብ ናይ ሎሚ መደብና ስለምንታይ ፐንጕን ዕንክይክይ እናበላ ከም ዝኸዳ ብሳይንሳዊ ክልሰ ሓሳብ ዝገልጽ መግለጺ ክንርኢ ኢና።

Before you listen/Pre-listening

1) How many words can you think of that describe penguins and the way that they walk?

2) How can scientists compare animals today to animals in the past?

Listen to the audio and take the quiz.

Show transcript Hide transcript

ኣቕራቢቋንቋትግርኛ
ሰላም፡ እንቋዕ ናብዚ ሓቀኛ ዛንታት ቋንቋ እንግሊዝኛ ሰሚዕኩም ክትርድኡ ዝሕግዘኩም መደብ Listen Here ብደሓን መጻእኩም። ኣነ ተክለማርያም በኪት ኢየ።

Tom
And hello again everyone, I’m Tom. Good news for animal lovers! Today we are discussing penguins and asking the question ‘why do penguins waddle?’

ኣቕራቢቋንቋትግርኛ
‘To waddle’ ኣገባብ ኣካይዳ ኮይኑ፡ ንዋዛንባህግን ዘንጸባርቕ’ዩ። መብዛሕትኡ እዋን ምስ ህጻናትን ቆልዑትን ከነዕልል እንከለና ንጥቀመሉ።  

Tom
Let’s listen to the first part of today’s clip from BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme! The reporter is in the zoo.

ኣቕራቢቋንቋትግርኛ
ጽቡቕ ሓሳብ! እቲ ኣቕራቢ ካብቲ ኣብ ለንደን ዝርከብ መካነ-እንስሳ ፔንጕን ብዛዕባ ዘኹለል እናበልካ ምኻድ ዝተገብረ ስነፍልጠታዊ ፈተነ’ዩ ዘመሓላልፍ ዘሎ። ብዛዕባ ኣካይዳ ፔንጒን ንምግላጽ እትጥቀመሎም ቃላት ኣየኖት’ዮም?

Presenter
With its tiny legs and stiff, upright posture, a penguin has a waddle that's more than a little ungainly. But by installing a high-tech track in London Zoo, scientists will measure every tiny movement the birds make.

Tom
Did you hear that penguin? She mentions posture.

ኣቕራቢቋንቋትግርኛ
‘Posture’ ማለት ቝመና ማለት’ዩ። እዚ ቃል’ዚ መብዛሕትኡ ግዜ ብዛዕባ ሰባት ክንዛረብ እንከለና እንጥቀመሉ’ዩ፡ ምስ ኣቀዋዉማ ናይ ሓደ ሰብ ስለዝገልጽ። ንቝመና ናይ ፐንጒን ‘stiff’ ተሪርን ‘upright’ ቀጥ ዝበለን ብምባል ትገልጾ።

Tom
The presenter actually uses a phrase before ‘ungainly’. But, what is it? Listen again after ‘the penguin has a waddle’…

Insert
With its tiny legs and stiff, upright posture a penguin has a waddle that's more than a little ungainly.

Tom
She said ‘that’s more than a little ungainly’.

ኣቕራቢቋንቋትግርኛ
‘More than a little’, ኣብ ዓንኬል ናይዚ ክንጥቀመሉ እንከሎና ‘quite’ ማለት’ዩ። Why doesn’t she say ‘quite ungainly’? That’s much simpler!

Tom
Well, we often say this when we want to suggest something slightly negative in a more positive manner.

ኣቕራቢቋንቋትግርኛ
Hmm… Working with you is more than a little difficult! [ስሓቅ]  ተመራመርቲ ንምንቅስቓስ ፐንጒን ብኣሰር ይምዝግብዎም ምህላዎም እቲ ኣቕራቢ ይጠቅስ። ነዚ ምስ ናይ ዝሓለፈ ሓበሬታ የነጻጽርዎ። 

Tom
We can find stones or rocks with animal remains inside them. What’s the name for these? Let’s listen again!

Insert
But by installing a high-tech track in London Zoo, scientists will measure every tiny movement the birds make. The researchers will then compare this data with penguin fossils.

Tom
Aha! She said penguin fossils!

ኣቕራቢቋንቋትግርኛ
‘A fossil’  ኣሰረ-ሂወት ማለት’ዩ። ሓንሳብ ስቕ ንበል። ናይ ሎሚ ፐንጒን ‘stiff, upright posture’ ከምኡ’ውን ‘tiny legs’ ከም ዘለዎም ሰሚዕና። ናይ ሎሚ ፐንጒን ከም ቶም ናይ ቀደም ሕደ’ዶ ይመስልኹም? ነዚ ንምፍላጥ ተኸታተሉ።

Insert
The researchers will then compare this data with penguin fossils. They think that the ancient birds didn't waddle and had a more horizontal posture with different leg anatomy. The scientists suspect that as modern-day penguins became better adapted to swimming, they became more clumsy on land.

Tom

So, they aren’t the same! We’ve heard how modern penguins have an upright posture. Penguins in the past were the opposite!  They had a horizontal posture.

ኣቕራቢቋንቋትግርኛ
Horizontal, ንጎኒ ማለት ኢዩ። Which means they were lying flat?

Tom
Right! Their legs have probably adapted over time as their posture changed.

ኣቕራቢቋንቋትግርኛ
‘To adapt’ ምልምማድ ማለት ኢዩ። መብዛሕትኡ ከምዚ ዓይነት ኣቃውማ ‘adapt to’ምስ ስም ወይ ምስ ግሲ ING ንጥቀመሉ። ደጊምና ነታ ናይ መወዳእታ ምሉእ ሓሳብ ንስማዕ።

Insert
The scientists suspect that as modern-day penguins became better adapted to swimming, they became more clumsy on land.

Tom
So, penguins adapted to swimming. This means the anatomy, or structure, of their legs changed to become more suitable for water.

ኣቕራቢቋንቋትግርኛ
And that’s why they’re clumsy, ደርጋፍ ማለት ኢዩ!

Tom
Exactly! So, have you adapted to presenting Listen Here yet?

ኣቕራቢቋንቋትግርኛ
I think I have adapted by now, and we hope your ears are adapting to our show.
ኣብ ዝቕጽል መደብ  ብሰላም የራኽበና። ሰላም ቀንዩ። ደሓን ኩን ቶም!

Tom
Bye everyone! See you next time!

Language features

horizontal / upright posture
Posture relates to position. It describes someone’s position when they are standing or sitting.

- You should sit up straight at your desk! A bad posture can cause back pain.

Horizontal describes something which lies flat or level with the ground.  The opposite of horizontal is vertical. Upright is a synonym of vertical which. It’s commonly used when referring to posture.

to adapt
To adapt means ‘to change in accordance with something’.

- After I had a baby I adapted my bike – it now has two seats instead of one!


To become adapted
describes the process of changing when change is influenced by important factors.

- Otters have become adapted to cold water. They have thick fur which keeps them warm.

anatomy
Anatomy
is a noun used to refer to the structure of the body.

- The anatomy of a shark is perfect for hunting in the sea. They have sharp teeth and can breathe underwater using gills.

The subject name for the study of bodily structure is also anatomy.

- I need to leave or I will be late for anatomy class!

Why do penguins waddle?

3 Questions

Choose the correct answer.
ቕኑዕ መልሲ ምረጹ።

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Join us for our next episode of Listen Here! when we will learn more useful language and practise your listening skills.
ኣብ ዝቕጽል መደብ Listen Here ኣገደስቲ ናይ ኢንግሊዝኛ ዝርርብን ናይ ምስማዕ ክእለትኩም እተመሐይሹሉ መደብ ሒዝናልኩም ክንቀርብ ኢና’ሞ ብሰላም የራኽበና።

Session Vocabulary

  • waddle
    ዕንክይክይ

    stiff
    ተሪር

    upright
    ትኽ ዝበለ

    posture
    ኣቀዋውማ/ቝመና

    ungainly
    መልክዕ ዘይብሉ

    clumsy
    ገልጣም

    fossils
    ኣሰረ-ሂወት

    anatomy
    ስነ-መዛርዕ

    to adapt
    ምልማድ