The United States of America

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“ The United States of America

 

                                                                                                        

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Вінниця 2001

PLAN

 

1.   The USA

2.   American symbols

3.   The US government

4.   What are americans fond of?

5.   The capital of the usa

6.   places of sightseeing

7.   holidays in the usa

8.    famous people of america


The united states of america.

The United States of America is the fourth largest country in the world (after Russia Canada and China). It occupies the southern part of North America and stretches from the Pacific to the Atlantic Ocean. It also includes Alaska in the north and Hawaii in the Pacific Ocean. The total area of the country is about nine and a half million square kilometres. The USA borders on Can­ada in the north and on Mexico in the south. It also has a seaboarder with Russia.

The USA is made up of 50 states and the District of Columbia a special federal area where the capital of the country Washington is situated. The population of the country is about 250 million.

If we look at the map of the USA we can see lowlands and mountains. The highest mountains are the Rocky Mountains the Cordillera and the Sierra Nevada. The high­est peak is Mount McKinley which is located in Alaska.

America's largest rivers are the Mississippi the Mis­souri the Rio Grande and the Columbia. The Great Lakes on the border with Canada are the largest and deepest in the USA.

The climate of the country varies greatly. The coldest regions are in the north. The climate of Alaska is arctic. The climate of the central part is continental. The south has subtropical climate. Hot winds blowing from the Gulf of Mexico often bring typhoons. The climate along the Pacific coast is much warmer than that of the Atlantic coast.

The USA is a highly developed industrial country. It is the world's leading producer of copper and oil and the world's second producer of iron ore and coal. Among the most important manufacturing industries are aircraft cars textiles radio and television sets armaments furniture and paper.

Though mainly European and African in origin Ameri­cans are made up from nearly all races and nations in­cluding Chinese and native Americans.

The largest cities are New York Los Angeles Chicago Philadelphia Detroit San Francisco and others.

The United States is a federal union of 50 states each of which has its own government. The seat of the central (federal) government is Washington DC. According to the US Constitution the powers of the government are divided into 3 branches: the executive headed by the President the legislative exercised by the Congress and the juridi­cal. The Congress consists of the Senate and the House of Representatives. There are two main political parties in the USA: the Republican and the Democratic.

American Symbols

The American flag is often called “The Stars and Stripes” it is also called "Old Glory". It represents the growth of the na­tion. It has 13 horizontal stripes 7 red and 6 white which stand for the original 18 states. In the top left hand corner there are 50 white stars on a blue background: one star for each state. The national anthem of the United States is “The Star Span­gled Banner". The words written during the Anglo-American war of 1812-1814 and set to the music of an old song. Every state has its own flag its own emblem and its own anthem too.

The eagle became the national emblem of the country in 1782. It has an olive branch (a symbol of peace) and arrows (a symbol of strength). You can see the eagle on the back of a dollar bill.

The Statue of Liberty is the symbol of American democracy. It stands on Liberty Island in New York. It one of the first things people see when they arrive in New York by sea. This National Monument was a present  form France to the USA. France gave the statue to America in 1884 as a symbol of friendship. Liberty carries the torch of freedom - in her right hand. In her left hand she is holding a tablet with the inscription "July 4 1776" - American Independence Day.

The US Congress

The Congress of the United States is composed of two houses: Senate and the House of Representatives. The Senate presents the states and the House represents the population according to its distribution among the states. Each state is guaranted at least one representative in the House. The remainder are apportioned among the states according to their population. The Senate of US is composed one of the hundred members – two being elected from each state. Senators are chosen for six years one-third retiring or seeking is re-elected every two years. Two senators from the same state never finish their terms at the same time one of them is called "Senior Senator" and the other - "Junior Senator".

The presiding officer of the senate is the Vice-President of the United States The Vice-President is not a member of the chamber over which he presides and he sometimes is not a member of the party in power.

The work of the US Congress is done mostly in different committees. The mostly important Rules Appropriation Foreign Relations Finance Armed Services.

In the House of Representatives the most important are Rules Appropriation Ways and Means Judiciary Agriculture.

The chairmen of the standing committees are considered the real rules of the Senate and the House.

what are americans fond of?

Americans are very fond of sport. The most popular sports in the USA are football which is played from April to October baseball played from September to December basketball played from October to April and ice hockey played in most nor then cities from October to March.

American football derives from the English game of rugby. It started at Harvard University in the 1870's. It is a game for two teams of eleven men on the field. The object of the game is to have the control of the ball and to score points by carrying it across the goal-line.

Baseball is a team game derived from the English game of cricket. It is played with a bat and ball by two teams of nine players each on a field with four bases. Baseball is the national game in the USA and it is very popular in Canada too.

Basketball is a game which nowadays is popular all over the world. It was invented in 1891. During the ’20s the first US league championship was organized. In the ’70s  American Championship was divided into two leagues: the ABA (American Basketball Association) which does not exist any longer and which played with a blue red and white ball and the NBA (National Basketball Association).

There are more activities which Americans take part in such as golf swimming tennis aerobics wrestling etc.

The capital of the usa

The beautiful city of Washington D.C. is the capital of the  United States and the centre of its government. The capital was named after the first president George Washington and was founded in 1790. It is situated on the Potomac River in the District of Columbia. Washington is not the largest city in the USA. It has a population only 900000.

Washington D.C. has nothing characteristically American in it as its conception is purely French. It has long wide avenues gardens beautiful parks and no skyscrapers at all. Washington is the residence of the President and the Congress of the USA. The White House is the President’s residence the Capitol – the seat of the American Congress. The largest and the tallest among the buildings is the Capitol with its great House of Representatives and Senate Chamber. There are no skyscrapers because no other building must be taller than the Capitol. All american presidents except George Washington (the White House was not yet built in his time) have lived in the White House. It was built in 1799.

Washington is a large scientific and cultural centre where there are many research institutes five universities the National Academy of Science and the Library of Congress.

There is one more well-known building in Washington – Pentagon the residence of the US Military department. It is situated in the suburbs to the south of the Potomac.

places of sightseeing

The Pentagon is a building in Arlington Virginia near Washington D.C. It has the offices of the U.S. Department of Defense. The Department of Defense includes the Army Navy Air Force Marines and Coast Guard.

The word pentagon comes from the Greek penta which means “five”. A pentagon is a figure with five sides. The Pentagon has five rings. The rings are inside each other. Each ring has five sides. How tall do you think the Pentagon is? The answer is easy. Each ring is five stories tall.

The Pentagon is the largest office building in the world. It has seventeen miles of halls. People can get lost in the Pentagon. So the walls on each floor are a different color (brown green red gray and blue). This helps people to know where they are. There are also many maps in the halls.

The Pentagon is so big that it is like a city. Almost 30 000 people work there. The Pentagon has its own doc­tors dentists and nurses. It has its own banks and stores. It has a post office a fire department and a police depart­ment. It also has an important center for communications. This center guards the country. It is hundreds of feet under the ground. The Pentagon even has its own radio and TV stations.

New York

New York is one of the largest cities in the world and the biggest seaport. It's the financial capital of the country. It’s the business centre of the United States. The city is situated in New York State at the mouth of the Hudson river. It’s population is over eight million. In early times the New York area was populated by Indians. It is here in Wall street many business offices banks and world famous New York stock exchange are situated.

New York is an industrial and cultural centre of the country. The most important branches of industry are those producing vehicles glass chemicals. New York is also a great cultural centre. It has many museums art galleries theatres ballet. There are two world-famous streets in New York – Broadway and Fifth Avenue. Broadway is the centre of the theatres and night life. Fifth Avenue is the great shopping hotel and club avenue.

The Empire State Building is at Fifth Avenue. It's a 102-storeyed building was built in 1931. The Metropolitan Museum of Art is at Fifth Avenue. It includes hundreds of world famous masterpieces and attracts many visitors.

The Statue of Liberty is the symbol of American democracy. It stands on Liberty Island in New York port. Liberty.

Today New York City is informally called “The Big Apple” The origin of this name is unknown but it is popular all over the world.

 

BEVERLY HILLS

Most visitors to Los Angeles California want to go and see Beverly Hills. This is where you find the homes of the movie stars. But Beverly Hills is not Los Angeles. It is h small city next to Los Angeles.

All kinds of celebrities live in Beverly Hills. These celebrities may be movie stars television stars sports stars or other people in the news. Tourists can buy special maps for the homes of the stars. These homes are very beautiful. They usually have swimming pools and tennis courts. But some times you cannot see very much. The homes have high wall or trees around them.

Beverly Hills is also famous for Rodeo Drive. This is one of the most expensive shopping streets in the United States. Rodeo Drive started to be an elegant street in the 1960s. Many famous stores were opened on the street. People liked all the new styles and fashions they could buy. Today you can find the most expensive and unusual clothing jewelry and furniture in the world on Rodeo Drive. Rodeo Drive is a very special street. When you want to park your car in public parking an attendant will come and park your car for you.

Beverly Hills is really a small city. Only about 35 000 people live there. But during the day more than 200 000 peo­ple come to Beverly Hills to work or to shop.

Holidays in the USA

There are no national holidays in the United States. Each of the 50 states has jurisdiction over its holidays. In practice however most states observe the federal (“legal”) public holidays even though the President and Congress can legally designate holidays only for fed­eral government employees.

Ten holidays per year are proclaimed by the federal government. They are as follows:

New Year's Day (January 1)                        

Martin Luther King Day (third Monday in January)   

George Washington’s Birthday (third Monday in February)

Memorial Day (last Monday in May)

Independence Day (July 4)

Labour Day (first Monday in September)

Columbus Day (second Monday in October)

Veteran's Day (November 11)

Thanksgiving Day (fourth Thursday in November)

Christmas (December 25).

There is no many traditional holidays observed by a large number of Americans which are neither legal nor official. Among these are Valentine’s Day St. Patric’s Day Mother’s Day and Halloween (the last day of October).

Valentine’s Day has had a long and romantic history. February 14 was the Roman date of the festival where were games and dancing and then each young man drew from an urn the name of the girl who would be his sweetheart for the coming year. In the seventh century the festival began to be called St. Valentine’s Day.

Valentine’s Day is the sweet-hearts holiday when people in love express affection for each other in different ways.

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