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The Axolotl Salamander

Published: 9.11.2021
Level 5   |   Time: 4:42
Accent: American
Source: PBS Deep Look

Native to the lakes of Mexico City, the axolotl salamander stays in the water its whole life. It’s nearly extinct in the wild, but survives in research labs around the world.


triangle Directions 목표 Direcciones Instruções


    It is important to read the vocabulary before you watch the video. This will improve your ability to understand the video. It will also help you understand how the new vocabulary is used naturally.

  2. WATCH the VIDEO

    The first time you watch the video, just try to understand the overall situation.


    First try to answer all the questions from memory. Then rewatch the video and try to answer the questions that you missed.

  4. WATCH and READ the SCRIPT

    Watch the video again while you read the script. Reading and listening at the same time will help you hear each individual word and improve your listening accuracy.


    There are several different activities that focus on test preparation, vocabulary, grammar, and sentence structure.


    Es importante leer el vocabulario antes de ver el video. Esto mejorará su capacidad para comprender el video. También le ayudará a comprender cómo se usa el nuevo vocabulario de forma natural.

  2. VER el VIDEO

    La primera vez que vea el video, intente comprender la situación general.


    Primero intente responder todas las preguntas de memoria. Luego, vuelva a ver el video e intente responder las preguntas que se perdió.


    Mire el video nuevamente mientras lee el guión. Leer y escuchar al mismo tiempo lo ayudará a escuchar cada palabra individual y mejorará su precisión auditiva.


    Hay una serie de actividades diferentes que se centran en la preparación de la examen, el vocabulario, la gramática y la estructura de las oraciones.

  1. 어휘 읽기

    비디오를 보기 전에 어휘와 배경을 읽는 것이 중요합니다. 이렇게 하면 비디오를 이해하는 능력이 향상됩니다. 또한 새로운 어휘가 어떻게 자연스럽게 사용되는지 이해하는데 도움이됩니다.

  2. 비디오 보기

    비디오를 처음 볼 때 전체 상황을 이해하려고 노력하세요.

  3. 문제에 답하기

    먼저 모든 질문에 답을 해보세요. 그런 다음 비디오를 다시보고 놓친 질문에 답해보세요.

  4. 비디오 보면서 대본 읽기

    대본을 읽는 동안 비디오를 다시 보세요. 읽기와 듣기를 동시에 하면 각각의 단어를 듣고, 듣기 정확도를 향상시킬 수 있습니다.

  5. 액티비티 하기

    듣기 정확도, 발음, 어휘, 문법 및 문장 구조에 초점을 맞춘 다양한 액티비티가 있습니다.


    É importante ler o vocabulário antes de assistir ao vídeo. Isso melhorará sua capacidade de entender o vídeo. Também ajudará você a entender como o novo vocabulário é usado naturalmente.


    Na primeira vez que assistir ao vídeo, tente entender a situação geral.


    Primeiro, tente responder a todas as perguntas de memória. Em seguida, assista novamente ao vídeo e tente responder às perguntas que você errou.


    Assista ao vídeo novamente enquanto lê o roteiro. Ler e ouvir ao mesmo tempo ajudará você a ouvir cada palavra individualmente e a melhorar sua precisão auditiva.


    Existem várias atividades diferentes que se concentram na preparação para o teste, vocabulário, gramática e estrutura de frases.

triangle Vocabulary 어휘 Vocabulário Vocabulario

  • ☐ ☐ ☐ frilly [adj] - decorated with frills [image] vocab image
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ a salamander [n] - a lizard-like amphibian with a long body and tail and short legs [image] vocab image
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ a blank smile [exp] - a smile with no feeling
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ Aztec [n/adj] - the native people in Mexico before the Spanish conquest of the 16th century
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ an amphibian [n] - a cold-blooded animal that can breathe water and air (frogs, toads, salamanders)
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ aquatic [adj] - related to or living in water
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ terrestrial [adj] - related to or living on land
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ translucent [adj] - allowing light to pass through
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ a tadpole [n] - the tailed aquatic baby of an amphibian (frog, toad, salamander), breathing through gills [image] vocab image
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ a larva [n] - the active immature baby form of an insect or amphibian [image] vocab image
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ gills [n] - the organs on the side of a fish that allow it to breathe [image] vocab image
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ fin-shaped [adj] - shaped like the fin of a fish [image] vocab image
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ shed [v] - loose, remove
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ a foot in length [exp] - about 30cm long
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ hangs on to [phv] - keep
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ gulp air [exp] - breathe air
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ organs [n] - the parts inside the body (heart, lungs, stomach, skin)
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ evolutionary leftovers [exp] - a part of the body that remains after it is not useful or necessary for survival
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ cryptic [adj] - mysterious, unclear
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ metamorphosis [n] - a change from one stage (young) to another stage (adult)
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ vertebrate [n] - animals that have spines or backbones
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ a megacity [n] - a very large city
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ canals [n] - human-made rivers used for transportation or farming [image] vocab image
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ invasive predators [n] - animals that kill other animals
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ regenerate [v] - heal, regrow
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ limbs [n] - arms and legs
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ harness [v] - use, exploit
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ thrive [v] - be very successful
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ innovative [adj] - creating new ideas
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ a collaboration [n] - working together
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ a filter [n] - used to clean water or air
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ gravel [n] - small pieces of rock [image] vocab image
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ in peril [exp] - in danger
  • ☐ ☐ ☐ ingenuity [n] - creativity

[n] - noun,  [v] - verb,  [phv] - phrasal verb,  [adj] - adjective,  [exp] - expression

triangle Questions 문제 Questões Preguntas [ ? ]


These are guided listening questions. These questions are NOT designed to test or trick you. They are designed to guide you through the video.

TIP: If you don’t understand something in the video, click "Show Answers". You should be able to understand all of the important points of the video by reading the questions and the correct answers.


Estas son preguntas de escucha guiada. Estas preguntas NO están diseñadas para ponerte a prueba o engañarte. Están diseñados para guiarlo a través del video.

CONSEJO: Si no entiende algo en el video, haga clic en "Show Answers". Debería poder comprender todos los puntos importantes del video leyendo las preguntas y las respuestas correctas.


이것은 안내식 듣기 질문입니다. 이 질문들은 당신을 시험하거나 속이기 위한 것이 아닙니다. 동영상을 통해 안내하도록 설계되었습니다.

팁 : 동영상에서 이해가 되지 않는 부분이 있으면 "Show Answers"를 클릭하세요. 질문과 정답을 읽으면서 영상의 중요한 요점을 모두 이해할 수 있어야 합니다.


Estas são perguntas de escuta guiadas. Essas perguntas NÃO foram elaboradas para testar ou enganar você. Eles são projetados para guiá-lo através do vídeo.

DICA: Se você não entender algo no vídeo, clique em "Mostrar respostas". Você deve entender todos os pontos importantes do vídeo lendo as perguntas e as respostas corretas.

  1. The axolotl are named after an Aztec _____.

  2. Axolotl eggs are laid _____.
    on land

  3. The eggs first grows into _____.

  4. Other types of salamanders usually develop _____ and _____.
    lungs, crawl onto land
    lungs, adapt to the water
    gills, crawl onto land
    gills, adapt to the water

  5. Axolotls grow to be about _____ long.
    a few inches
    a foot
    a meter

  6. Axolotls also have _____ as evolutionary leftovers.

  7. Cryptic metamorphosis is when an animal evolves (changes) _____, but doesn’t show this change_____.
    internally, externally
    externally, internally

  8. Axolotls are _____.
    evolving quickly

  9. There only a few hundred axolotls left _____.
    in the wild
    in research labs

  10. Thousands of axolotls survive _____.
    in the wild
    in research labs

  11. Scientist are interested in axolotls because of their ability to _____.
    adapt to new habitats
    change color
    develop lungs and gills

  12. Scientists are working with _____ in Mexico to give axolotls a safe habitat in the wild.
    local governments

triangle Sentence Building (Summary) 문장 만들기 Construção de sentença Construcción de oraciones [ ? ]


This activity is designed to improve sentence accuracy and complexity. Most students can produce the key content words in a sentence. However, they have difficulty with accuracy because the functional words are difficult or can seem unimportant. This activity will help learners eliminate problems with these functional words by giving them immediate feedback on the mistakes they are making. It will also help students develop their use of more natural, varied and complex sentence structures.

TIP: Say the sentence out loud. Notice the types of mistake you make often. Focus on those types of errors. (singular/plural, subject-verb agreement, article use, prepositions, gerunds and infinitives, noun clauses, adjective clauses, word order, and word forms.)


Esta actividad está diseñada para mejorar la precisión y complejidad de las oraciones. La mayoría de los estudiantes pueden producir las palabras clave del contenido en una oración. Sin embargo, tienen dificultades con la precisión porque las palabras funcionales son difíciles o pueden parecer poco importantes. Esta actividad ayudará a los alumnos a eliminar problemas con estas palabras funcionales al brindarles retroalimentación inmediata sobre los errores que están cometiendo. También ayudará a los estudiantes a desarrollar su uso de estructuras de oraciones más naturales, variadas y complejas.

CONSEJO: Diga la oración en voz alta. Observe los tipos de errores que comete con frecuencia. Concéntrese en ese tipo de errores. (singular / plural, concordancia entre sujeto y verbo, uso del artículo, preposiciones, gerundios e infinitivos, cláusulas sustantivas, cláusulas adjetivas, orden de las palabras y formas de las palabras).


이 액티비티는 문장의 정확성과 복잡성을 개선하기 위해 고안되었습니다. 대부분의 학생들은 문장에서 핵심 내용 단어를 생성 할 수 있습니다. 그러나 기능적 단어가 어렵거나 중요하지 않은 것처럼 보일 수 있기 때문에 정확성에 어려움이 있습니다. 이 액티비티는 학습자가 실수에 대한 즉각적인 피드백을 제공함으로써 이러한 기능적 단어의 문제를 제거하는 데 도움이 됩니다. 또한 학생들이 보다 자연스럽고 다양하며 복잡한 문장 구조를 사용하는 데 도움이 됩니다.

팁 : 문장을 크게 말하세요. 자주 저지르는 실수 유형과, 이러한 유형의 오류에 집중하세요. (단수 / 복수, 주어-동사 일치, 관사 사용, 전치사, 동명사 및 부정사, 명사절, 형용사절, 어순 및 단어 형태)


Esta atividade foi desenvolvida para melhorar a precisão e a complexidade das frases. A maioria dos alunos pode produzir as palavras-chave do conteúdo em uma frase. No entanto, eles têm dificuldade com precisão porque as palavras funcionais são difíceis ou podem parecer sem importância. Esta atividade ajudará os alunos a eliminar problemas com essas palavras funcionais, dando-lhes feedback imediato sobre os erros que estão cometendo. Também ajudará os alunos a desenvolver o uso de estruturas de sentenças mais naturais, variadas e complexas.

DICA: Diga a frase em voz alta. Observe os tipos de erro que você comete com frequência. Concentre-se nesses tipos de erros. (singular/plural, concordância sujeito-verbo, uso de artigos, preposições, gerúndios e infinitivos, cláusulas substantivas, cláusulas adjetivas, ordem das palavras e formas das palavras.)

Directions: Write sentences about the video clip using the words given. You can change the word form or add words, but you cannot change the word order.

Instrucciones: Escriba oraciones sobre el videoclip usando las palabras dadas. Puede cambiar la forma de la palabra o agregar palabras, pero no puede cambiar el orden de las palabras.

Instrucciones: Escreva orações sobre o videoclipe usando as palavras-chave. Você pode alterar a forma da palavra ou adicionar palavras, mas não pode alterar a ordem das palavras.

지시 : 주어진 단어를 사용하여 비디오 클립에 대한 문장을 씁니다. 어형을 변경하거나 단어를 추가할 수 있지만 어순은 변경할 수 없습니다.

Sentence 1

axolotls / name / after / Aztec / god / who / escape / death / morph / into / amphibian

Axolotls are named after an Aztec god who escaped (from) death by morphing into an amphibian.

Sentence 2

axolotls / begin / life / small / translucent / egg / lay / underwater.

Axolotls begin life as small translucent eggs (that are) laid underwater.

Sentence 3

although / many / salamander / develop / lung / and / crawl / land / axolotls / live / whole / lives / underwater

Although many salamanders develop lungs and crawl onto land, axolotls live their whole lives underwater.

Sentence 4

axolotls / can / grow / up / foot / length

Axolotls can grow up to a foot in length.

Sentence 5

axolotls / can / breathe / both / underwater / land / because / they / gill / lung

Axolotls can breathe both underwater and on land because they have gills and lungs.

Sentence 6

although / only / few / hundred / axolotl / remain / wild / thousand / them / survive / research / lab

Although only a few hundred axolotls remain in the wild, thousands of them survive in research labs.

Sentence 7

scientist / want / study / axolotls / ability / regenerate / damage / limb / organ

Scientists want to study axolotls' ability to regenerate damaged limbs and organs.

Sentence 8

team / biologist / start / work / farmer / protect / axolotl / wild

A team of biologists (has) started [working/to work] with farmers to protect the axolotls in the wild.

Sentence 9

Chinampas / traditional / float / garden / locate / canal / Mexico City

Chinampas are (the) traditional floating gardens (that are) located in the canals [in/of] Mexico City.

Sentence 10

farmer / protect / axolotl / both / pollution / invasive / predator

The farmers protect axolotls from both pollution and invasive predators.

triangle Discussion 논의 Questões de discussão Discusión

  1. What were the three most interesting facts that you learned about axolotl salamanders from the video?
  2. Explain how axolotls are similar to and different from other salamanders. Try using these words: amphibian, aquatic, terrestrial, gills, lungs
  3. The narrator says: the axolotl is a bridge between worlds: 1) the spiritual and the natural; 2) the aquatic and the terrestrial; 3) survival and extinction. What does each of these ideas mean?
  4. There are more axolotl salamanders in captivity than in the wild? Can you think of any other animals that might be in the same situation?
  5. Populations of wild animals have more than halved since 1970, while the human population has doubled. What are the reasons for this?
  6. Do you think this situation is a serious problem? Why?

triangle Script 대본 Roteiro Texto

The axolotl isn’t just a frilly salamander with a half-smile and a blank stare. It’s named after an Aztec god, who escaped death by morphing into this amphibian shape.

It’s a creature that’s a bridge between worlds: the spiritual and the natural; the aquatic and the terrestrial; survival and extinction.

Like most of its salamander relatives, the axolotl begins its life as a tiny, translucent egg laid underwater.

It grows into a tadpole -- a larva with gills and a flattened, fin-shaped tail.

In time, many salamanders shed these features, develop lungs, and crawl onto land. But the axolotl never makes the transition ashore.

Even as it grows – up to a foot in length – it hangs on to its larval lifestyle.

The gills are reddish-purple from the blood cells pulsing through them, pulling oxygen directly from the water. To breathe, it just flaps those gills!

But if that doesn’t work – like if there’s not enough oxygen in the water – the axolotl has a backup: fully functional lungs it can use to gulp air from the surface. These organs are evolutionary leftovers from when its ancestors lived on land.

The axolotl’s lungs are a rare example of cryptic metamorphosis: When an animal matures to its next stage of development internally, but doesn’t show it on the outside.

Despite its flexibility, this magnificent vertebrate is in trouble.

Since the 16th century, the axolotl’s native habitat, Lake Xochimilco in Mexico City, has been built over and polluted as this megacity grew. Now the lake is just a few canals, where the axolotls battle invasive predators, and warming waters from climate change.

Here, in the remnants of their ancestral home, only a few hundred are left.

But scattered across the globe, you'll find thousands of them–not in the wild though. They’re in research labs.

Scientists are impressed by the axolotl’s ability to rapidly regenerate damaged limbs, organs, even parts of their brain.

And that’s amazing for a vertebrate – an animal with a backbone – like us. Harnessing this healing ability for humans would be a breakthrough.

But what does it mean if an animal is thriving, only in captivity? What is a species without its natural habitat?

To preserve what’s left of the axolotl’s wild home, a team of biologists at the National Autonomous University of Mexico started an innovative collaboration.

They work with farmers of the 'chinampas' – the traditional floating gardens along the Xochimilco canals where the animals still live.

The farmers filter canal water for crops through native aquatic plants and gravel, without the use of pesticides. This protects axolotls from both pollution, and invasive predators.

For many in Mexico City, axolotls have come to symbolize the connection between humans and the natural world. Humans have put axolotls – and our environment – in peril. But with traditional knowledge, respect, and some ingenuity, we can give these remarkable animals a chance to come back.

Hey Deep Peeps, It's Laura. Can you find your friends in a crowd as well as a baby penguin? Sense Earth’s magnetic field like a fox? To find out, watch PBS's brand new show, Animal I.Q.! Head on over to PBS Terra to see it, and tell them Deep Look sent you. Have fun!