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Coronavirus Words

The rapid spread of the new coronavirus around the world has brought a lot of special words and phrases into everyday life. Below are some explanations for some of the most commonly used new words and phrases.


COVID-19 is the name given to a new coronavirus disease that began in Wuhan, China in December, 2019. Though the illness is similar to a cold for most people, in some cases it can cause death. The disease has had a terrible impact in China and has quickly spread to many other countries.


Trade means buying and selling things between countries. Through trade, countries can get things they don't have or can't make, and sell their own things to foreign countries.


A tariff is a special tax that is charged when something comes into a country. Tariffs are used to protect businesses inside a country. Most experts think tariffs don't work very well.


A vaccine is a special medicine that trains the human body so that it does not get a certain disease.

Supreme Court

A supreme court is the highest court in a country. This court can make decisions about laws and change decisions made by other courts. This makes it very powerful.

Parliamentary Systems

In a parliamentary system, voters elect members of parliament. Then the members of parliament choose one of their members as the leader. The leader is often called a "prime minister".

Head of Government/State

A head of government, such as a president or prime minister, leads the government. A head of state is the main person who represents a country, like a king, a queen, or a president.

Atoms and Molecules

Atoms are very tiny. They are the basic unit that everything is made of. There are at least 118 different kinds of atoms. Molecules are formed when atoms join together.

Digital Assistants

A digital assistant is a computer service that acts as a personal helper, such as Alexa, Siri, or Google Assistant. The helpers respond to questions or commands that users say out loud.


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