Notes

This worksheet supports Common Core State Standards ELA-Literacy.RI.6.9, ELA-Literacy.RI.7.9 and ELA-Literacy.RI.8.9

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Compare and Contrast - Non-Fiction (Grade 6)

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Compare and Contrast - Non-Fiction

1. 
Science fiction novels and movies often make it look as if moving from Earth to Mars would not be terribly difficult. After all, the planets are quite similar, correct?

They both have deep canyons, large volcanoes, and ice-covered polar caps. A day on Mars is only slightly longer than a day on Earth. The angle each planet tilts towards the sun is almost the same, so each planet has different seasons over the course of the year. Does this mean humans could soon climb on a space ship, fly to the red planet and call it home? Would it be easy for them to adapt to living on Mars? Not really!

Mars is much smaller than Earth, so there would probably be too little space to fit everyone there. It is almost much, much colder on Mars. The average temperature on the surface is 81 degrees below zero! This makes it impossible for there to be running water or living plants. Even if people could find special space suits to keep them warm enough, they would never be able to go outside and take a breath. The air on Mars is made up almost entirely of the gas carbon dioxide. This is poisonous to humans.

Life on other planets might be possible one day. Until then, it will have to remain a part of science fiction stories—and perhaps some very exciting dreams!
A. 
How are Mars and Earth alike?
  1. They both have large amounts of carbon dioxide.
  2. They both have days that last roughly 24 hours.
  3. They both are equally distant to the sun.
  4. They both are easy for humans to live on.
B. 
What are you likely to find only on Earth and not Mars?
  1. A lake
  2. A canyon
  3. A volcano
  4. A polar cap
C. 
How does weather on Mars differ from that on Earth?
  1. It is far wetter there with frequent, intense storms.
  2. It stays the same basic season year round.
  3. It is blisteringly hot for nine months of the year.
  4. It is far colder with an average temperature below zero.
2. 
When the wind is howling, the rain is crashing down, and storm warnings are being blared on all radio and television stations, you may find yourself wondering if you are in the middle of a tornado or a hurricane. Both are wicked weather events that involve wind, rain-and significant threat. Which type of storm is more dangerous? That is a question experts have been trying to decide for years.

Hurricanes are commonly located over oceans and typically begin as tropical storms during the late summer or fall. Strong winds rotate and, as they do, they pull water up from the sea and dump it on the closest land. As the eye of the storm reaches shore, everything calms. The sun may shine, but it does not last long before the other half of the storm hits. Frequently hurricanes bring storm surges or huge rushes of water that come ashore and cause floods, knocking down buildings and dragging homes and cars back out to sea. Hurricanes often last for hours, or even days before finally fading away.

Tornadoes, on the other hand, are found more on land, usually beginning as thunderstorms with thunder, lightning, and even hail. As they build in strength, the winds begin to rotate and become like a huge, powerful vacuum. These winds create a funnel cloud, which moves up to 30 miles an hour across the sky. If the tornado touches the ground, it can destroy homes, and lift cars.

As to which storm is the most dangerous, the answer has not been decided yet. Tornadoes move faster, but hurricanes last longer. There is no question, however; being a part of one is an event no one is likely to ever forget.
A. 
What factor do tornadoes and hurricanes share?
  1. Both begin over water as tropical storms.
  2. Both have a central eye where it is calm.
  3. Both are dangerous weather events.
  4. Both include thunder, lightning, and hail.
B. 
What is the difference between tornadoes and hurricanes?
  1. Tornadoes last for hours to days.
  2. Tornadoes include a strong storm surge.
  3. Tornadoes are made up of ocean water.
  4. Tornadoes create powerful funnel clouds.
C. 
What does a hurricane have that a tornado does not?
  1. A funnel cloud
  2. A central eye
  3. A thunderstorm
  4. A high risk of danger
3. 
There is no doubt that electronic readers, or e-readers as they are known, are gaining in popularity in the United States and other countries. Millions of models are sold in bookstores and online every year. The reasons why e-readers have been so welcomed are easy to understand.

Downloading books to e-readers is fast and easy. Frequently, all it requires is a few seconds and clicks on the computer. No trips to the library or bookstore required.

While e-readers themselves often come with a significant price tag, the books read on them are commonly free or far less expensive than traditional books. The size of print can be even be changed in order to make the words bigger or smaller, a helpful feature for readers of all ages. Finally, with an e-reader, it is certainly easier to download ten, a hundred-even a thousand books on it than it is to find room for all of those volumes on shelves.

Of course, there are those who still prefer reading an old-fashioned traditional book to using a modern e-reader. Some of these people like the feel and the sound of turning the pages. Others enjoy the weight and texture of a book in their hands. Still others simply appreciate the fact that real books do not need to be charged or are not easily damaged if dropped.
A. 
What factor do e-readers and books have in common?
  1. Both are quite expensive.
  2. Both are climbing in national sales.
  3. Both are difficult to see in dimly lit rooms.
  4. Both are enjoyable to hold and very portable.

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