Have you ever wanted to see the Aurora Borealis? (Intermediate English Lesson)

Essas aulas de inglês são para alunos intermediários e avançados de inglês como segunda língua. Eles incluem “Ler”, “Ouvir” e “Escrever”. Basta seguir a lição respondendo às perguntas à medida que as encontra. Todas as vagas em negrito devem ser traduzidas para seu próprio idioma para ajudar na compreensão do novo vocabulário.

So what is the Aurora Borealis exactly?


The northern lights, or aurora borealis, are a spectacular, colourful display of light commonly seen in the night sky in the northern hemisphere. Auroras in the southern hemisphere are known as the southern lights, or aurora australis.

How auroras form

Auroras occur when charged particles (electrons and protons) collide with gases in Earth’s upper atmosphere.

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Those collisions produce tiny flashes that fill the sky with colourful light. As billions of flashes occur in sequence, the auroras appear to move or “dance” in the sky.

Earth’s magnetic field steers the charged particles towards the poles. The shape of Earth’s magnetic field creates two auroral ovals above the North and South Magnetic Poles. That is why auroras occur almost every night in the northern sky, from August to May.

Last night on 26th September 2022 a local photographer in Yorkshire, England took these photos and videos as a spectacular view of the aurora borealis unexpectedly appeared.


Listening Exercise

Watch the video and answer the questions below.


  1. What do we find at the centre of the Earth?
  2. What is the ‘matnetosphere’?
  3. What is the 4th state of matter?
  4. What are the four states of matter?
  5. What causes the different colours of the aurora borealis?

Solar wind

Our planet’s magnetic field forms an invisible shield that protects us from the solar wind. From time to time, the solar wind gets stronger and penetrates Earth’s magnetic field. The stream of particles interacts with gases in the magnetic field (the magnetosphere), generating magnificent auroras.

As a rule, the more active the Sun is:

  • the more stunning the auroras will appear on Earth.
  • the further south that the oval positioned above northern Canada will stretch.

When solar activity decreases, the oval returns to its normal position and the auroras become less intense.

Also, because of the solar wind, sometimes the magnetic field lines reconnect on the side of Earth opposite the Sun. They snap back like an elastic band, sending large amounts of energy back towards Earth’s poles. This phenomenon, called magnetic reconnection, creates stunning displays of aurora.

Writing Exercise:

Write 150 words about how you feel if you had the opportunity to stand watch the  Aurora Borealis.

Grammar to use

In your text use as many positive adjectives as you can to express your delight.

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