Extinction conversation questions
Scientists use the term extinct to describe living species that have died and no longer exist. It is a very interesting topic and has become in modern times, a huge concern for ecologists and those who love nature. These thought-provoking extinction conversation questions make for a great discussion on the subject.
There are a few difficult terms for ESL learners in this speaking activity, these include – endangered, natural disaster, mass extinction, exist, population, bring back (to life), species, protect, thrive, mammals, inevitable, fossil, meteor, and nuclear.
The extinction conversation questions are –
Why do you think that dinosaurs became extinct? What happened to them?
Do you know of any endangered animals in your country that are facing extinction?
What kinds of natural disasters could cause a mass extinction of living things?
Are there any rare plants and trees in your country? What do they look like?
Do you think that one day humans will become extinct? How could this happen?
Where is a place that you have visited that has endangered plants and animals?
What are some river or ocean creatures that only exist in small numbers?
Why have so many plants and animals disappeared in the last few hundred years?
Which countries are well-known for eating and using wild animals for medicine?
Where in the world is hunting causing problems for animal populations?
Do you think that scientists may be able to bring back extinct species in the future?
If you could make one extinct animal alive again, what would you choose?
Is there anything that you would like to be extinct? Why do you dislike it so much?
What are some ways that endangered animals can be protected and be able to thrive?
Why do you think that big mammals such as elephants and tigers are hunted?
Why are bees so important? What would happen if all bees on earth became extinct?
Do you believe that global warming will cause extinctions? How will this happen?
Is it possible that the extinction of all living things is inevitable? Why do you think so?
What are some things that you can do to help stop an animal from becoming extinct?
Have you ever seen fossils or bones of an extinct animal? Where did you see them?
What would you do if you knew that a giant meteor was going to hit earth next year?
What is the closest national park to your home? What creatures live there?
Which species of animals do you think would survive a global nuclear war?
What do you think will be the next large animal to become extinct? Why?
Note that the animals featured on the extinction discussion questions worksheet are – the saber-toothed tiger, dodo bird, Tasmanian tiger, glyptodon, wooly mammoth, quagga, and Irish elk.
Expressions related to extinction
Here are some useful expressions that you can introduce to your group either before or after discussing the extinction conversation questions.
To say that thing is as dead as a dodo is to say it is completely dead, extinct, broken beyond repair, or outdated and no longer used. Other expressions with the same meaning include as dead as a doorknob, doornail, mackerel, herring, and as dead as mutton.
To state that something is extinct or gone forever you can say it has been wiped out, died out or died off, killed off, or gone the way of the dinosaurs.