Learn English | A new lesson every week
Book your course now

In the news - baby tale not black and white - Upper Int level

Average: 3.7 (10 votes)

I found this fascinating article about white children being born to black parents and decided to use it for one of my lessons. This is a surprisingly common phenomenon. I have taken out some of the words and challenge you to put the vocabulary in the correct gaps! Good luck! Caroline.

Vocabulary:

Inherited - something you got from your ancestors.
Severity - the seriousness of a condition.
Phenomenon - something impressive or extraordinary.
Mixtures - a combination or blend of elements.
Explanations - reasons why something might have happened.
Disorder - something irregular in our physical or mental health.
Damage - injury or harm
Traits - a psychological or physical characteristic.

A white baby girl with a mop of blonde hair and blue eyes has been born to black parents living in London. How is this possible?
While there have been several cases of different coloured twins born to parents with mixed-race ancestry in recent years, Ben and Angela Ihegboro, who are originally from Nigeria, say they have no such origins which could explain the _(1)_ that is their new daughter Nmachi.
In the case of Nmachi, there are three possible _(2)_ of why she looks so very different from her older brother and sister, who are both black: dormant white genes which entered both of her parents' families long ago, a genetic mutation unique to her, or albinism.
Contrary to reports, doctors at the London hospital where Nmachi was born say they have not ruled out this recessive disorder which affects skin pigmentation.
Mix and match
Like many human _(3)_, a person's colour is influenced by about 12 different genes, which together control the amount of pigment - or melanin - produced in the skin.
It is in principle at least possible that both parents carried light skin gene variants, _(4)_ from unknown white ancestors on either side, which in their cases were masked by dark skin gene variants.
"We are all of us genetic _(5)_ to some extent and occasionally you'll have a convergence of the pale versions of these genes in African Americans and African Carribbeans who have a mixed black and white ancestry," says Bryan Sykes, Professor of Human Genetics at the University of Oxford.
Sunburn
But other experts point the finger firmly at albinism, a genetic _(6)_ which in its most extreme form results in a complete lack of pigment in the skin, hair and eyes.
It ranges in _(7)_ from Type 1 to 4, with overall about one in 20,000 people born worldwide with some form of the condition.
The principal health risks of albinism are problems with vision - ranging from the mild to the severe - and sun _(8)_. to the skin due to the lack of melanin, which protects against ultraviolet rays.
This is the key problem for those with the disorder in the scorching heat of Africa, potentially less so for a baby born in London - but care will still need to be taken with sunblock and hats.

To read the full article, go to http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-10697682

Link: "Long Road to Adulthood" - Upper Intermediate Level Reading

  • Missing word 1:
  • Missing word 2:
  • Missing word 3:
  • Missing word 4:
  • Missing word 5:
  • Missing word 6:
  • Missing word 7:
  • Missing word 8: