Cold War

The Space Race

The Space Race
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 6 to 8
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   8.04

     challenging words:    mistrust, nuclear, earth-orbiting, situation, so-called, launched, military, republic, teaching, orbit, spacecraft, satellite, outbreak, launch, provided, bomb
     content words:    Cold War, United States, Soviet Union, By January, Space Act, National Aeronautics, Space Administration, Yuri Gagarin

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The Space Race
By Sharon Fabian

1     Sometimes a bad situation can have surprisingly good results. The Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union was a bad situation and a very dangerous one. For years, citizens of both countries feared the outbreak of a terrible war between their countries. However, there were good results of the Cold War, at least in one area. In the area of space exploration, the Cold War spurred both the United States and the Soviet Union on to more and more discoveries. This so-called space race would never have happened if it hadn't been for the Cold War.
2     The space race resulted in great scientific discoveries for both countries. In the end, after the Cold War was finished, it also provided a project for both the United States and the Soviet Union to work on together.
3     It began in the 1950's, soon after the beginning of the Cold War. The United States was working on its first earth-orbiting satellite. At the time we didn't know it, but so was the Soviet Union.
4     We found out on October 4, 1957, the day when the Soviet Union launched its first satellite, Sputnik I, into space. An A-1 rocket boosted Sputnik into space from its base in the Soviet republic of Kazakhstan. Its first orbit of the Earth took about 95 minutes traveling at a speed of 18,000 miles per hour. Sputnik stayed in space for 57 days.
5     This must have been a day to celebrate for the Soviet people, but in the United States it was a day of panic. If the Soviet Union could launch a scientific rocket, then it could also launch a military rocket. The big fear was that the Soviet Union would be able to fire a nuclear bomb all the way to the United States with this new technology.

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