Solving the Plastic Crisis with Seaweed

Some companies are looking to the ocean to save the future. This one wants to use seaweed to combat against the plastic problems we are facing. Their products will be 100% biodegradable containers for food, some that will actually be edible, too!

Watch the video and then do the accompanying English language exercises on our website.

The news is a consistent source of entertainment, knowledge and discovery that never ceases to exist and always comes out with more and more material each day. Because it plays such a vital part in our lives and is so important to keep up with, it is without a doubt a piece of your everyday routine that can’t go ignored.

Whether it is to understand the ramifications of recent legislation passed, to hear about recent events and grasp the potential consequences to your country, or simply hear about what is happening in other countries in order to compare them to what’s happening in yours, the news is certainly a staple in our lives and the most consistent way to get information.

This is why Scrambled Eggs has decided to unite two of your biggest worlds: learning English and keeping up with what is happening in the world. We hope our challenging daily exercises, composed of listening, vocabulary and comprehension exercises in English, will satisfy both of those above worlds in a satisfactory and also entertaining way.

So enough about introductions, let’s get to today’s Learn English with the News topic:

Adapted from this article

Solving the Plastic Crisis with Seaweed | Definition Match

Put the following words to the correct definitions.

Solving the Plastic Crisis with Seaweed | Fill in the Blank

Fill out the text below with the correct answers.

Solving the Plastic Crisis with Seaweed | True or False

Indicate which sentences are true and which ones are false.


And that’s it for today’s English lesson, where you can improve your English with the news and current events. Do you have any comments or special requests for us for the next edition of Learn English with the News? Be sure to leave any feedback you have in the comments section below, as we would love to help you on your quest to learn the English language!

For other Learn English with the News segments, be sure to check out the rest of our posts:

Full text:

Imagine being able to eat the packaging that contains your food.

Notpla, a London-based startup, is designing a seaweed-based replacement for single-use plastic packaging. They see seaweed as the solution to the world’s plastic problem because it is abundant, grows quickly, doesn’t compete with land crops, sequesters carbon from the air, and doesn’t need pesticides.

Most of Notpla’s products are meant to be composted or dissolved after use. Some, however, are edible: things like sachets for condiments, water and even alcohol. Others, like takeaway boxes that replace plastic-based coating with seaweed lining are fully biodegradable, but not edible.

Their design director says they see nature as an inspiration for perfect packaging, like the skin on a fruit. Eventually, it becomes part of the natural cycle.

According to the UN, 331 million tons of plastic waste are produced globally each year. Sometimes these end up as microplastics—tiny particles resulting from larger plastics breaking down—which pollute the water, air and our bodies.

While they don’t think seaweed is the solution to every problem, they do believe that it is a step in the right direction to how we use plastic. In 2021, they tested 30,000 takeaway boxes in UK restaurants in collaboration with Just Eat, and plans are underway to offer the boxes around Europe in 2022.


Negative Past Tense

Past tense verbs can be tricky! Take a look at the explanation below, and then try the quiz to test your knowledge!

To form a negative simple past tense verb we use didn’t + verb.

I didn’t go to the party last night.
We didn’t eat pasta for dinner.

The only exception is the be verb. With wasn’t and weren’t we don’t use didn’t.

I wasn’t happy last week.
They weren’t late to the game.

Make sure to pay attention to the differences between affirmative and negative verbs:

She went to work yesterday.
She didn’t go to work yesterday.

We wanted to have cereal for breakfast.
We didn’t want to have cereal for breakfast.

Try the quiz!

Negative Past Tense | Fill in the Blank

Write the correct negative past tense verb to complete the sentence.

Negative Past Tense Quiz

Are these sentences correct or incorrect?

Phrasal Verbs

It’s time to do some dancing and get down with some phrasal verbs! Phrasal verbs are short phrases, usually two words, that have a different meaning than how they translate literally. For example, to hang up the phone means to end a phone call. This is probably one of the most common phrasal verbs and it’s so important that we use the phrase hang up nearly every time we talk about a call that is ended, we don’t have another word or phrase for it! Native English speakers use them all of the time and often may not even recognize that they’re using phrasal verbs. If you don’t understand them, you may have a break down in communication. There are hundreds of phrasal verbs in English and like idioms they will need to be learned individually. They may also have multiple meanings depending on the context, so be careful! That may be intimidating, but don’t back out now. If you do, you can always come back here to try again. Practicing phrasal verbs is a great way to beef up your English if you are an advanced speaker. Even if you know most of them it’s always helpful to brush up on your skills. Can you figure out what they mean?

Phrasal Verbs

Match the phrasal verb with its definition.