Facebook and cell phones have so much engulfed our lives. These generational gadgets are most prevalent among teens. The most usual way of teen communication is texting messages or having access to social media sites. A 17-year-old girl admits that she would rather give up a kidney than have her phone taken away. This alarming statement must concern all of us as it proves the extent of the addiction. But why are Facebook and cell phones so appealing especially among teens?
Firstly, the developmental needs of teenagers are met through facebook use. We all know that adolescence is a period during which teens mould themselves into what they want to be, and at the same time establish themselves as independent entities looking cool and impressing members of the opposite sex. Because they suffer from excruciating shyness and aching self-consciousness , social networking sites facilitate communication. For instance, if a teenager with a humongous spot is confessing his love to a beautiful girl, she isn’t aware of that. However, parents and teachers are concerned about online predators and say that online communication is so detached. Also teenagers are enslaved to their screens for endless hours instead of hanging out with their friends doing their homework or even enjoying their favourite hobbies.
There are solutions to this problem though. First of all parents should monitor their teens use of internet and give them a specific amount of time to surf the net. Moreover, if their teen is reducing the amount of time on the net , it would be an effective idea if parents rewarded them with a present eg an mp3, trip to the museum etc.
Some parents prefer to install software to monitor their child’s internet usage. There are a number of programs on the market that can provide a detailed account of the sites that a child has visited and the interactions they have been involved in online.
All in all, social networking sites and cell phones are just another generational thing. We must therefore accept it. Remember even with the advent of the television there were radical changes in people’s lives and the society itself. In the end, if you can keep your own life centered in reality and use social networking as a small part of it, you should be just fine.
1 According to the above text why is it that teenagers especially are so preoccupied with smartphones and social media sites like facebook?
2 Can you imagine what the life of a teenager was like before the advent of cells and facebook? Write down a short account of their pastime activities and interactions with the other people esp. their peers.
3 What can parents do to monitor their child’s use of the Net and social media sites?
4 Think of the radical changes television brought in people’s lives in the past. Write down a few concerns people may have held at that time as regards the “invasion” of the one-eyed-monster in all homes.
5 “if you can keep your own life centered in reality” what exactly does this phrase mean?
6 Form meaningful sentences with the words in bold type (red in color) in the text.articles | 0 Σχόλια
Give it Back! The Ethics of Repatriation
Lord Elgin used saws to hack off the famous Elgin Marbles from the Parthenon to move them to Britain. Giovani Belzoni , in the early 19th century, took more artifacts from Egypt than Napoleon’s armies did.
Today most governments have laws that prevent these activities from taking place. To keep artifacts from leaving their country, and encourage their return,governments have designed antiquities laws to curtail exports and regulate the way archaeology is done. It is also common for governments now to ask foreign museums to repatriate artifacts that have already been taken.
In these laws artifacts cannot be exported from the country without special permission-something that is rarely given. Digs must be approved and monitored by a government authority, such as the Supreme Council for Antiquities (SCA) . The people who conduct digs or investigations must have the proper qualifications, such as a PhD in archaeology.
They must also report their findings to the state and turn over artifacts that are found.
In their laws China,Greece and Egypt make clear that artifacts found at a dig site are property of the state, regardless of whether they are found on private property.
Even with the absence of antiquity laws archaeologists are encouraged to follow certain ethical beliefs : record site diligently, report all findings, publish as much as possible, don’t sell or steal artifacts, don’t publicly release information that will help looters, and so on. These are all principles that are taught in archaeology schools from Cambridge to Tokyo. Any student today who suggests dynamite as an excavation method would likely get a failing grade.
There are numerous attempts by countries to reclaim artifacts that were taken out in earlier times. Greece wants the Elgin Marbles back, Ethiopia got the Obelisk of Axum back in 2005 and Egypt wants several of its treasures back including the Rosetta Stone and the bust of Nefertiti.
This is only the tip of the iceberg of requests to return antiquities. There are several arguments made for repatriating artifacts. Sometimes there is a legal argument or an ethical one. Even in cases where permission is granted , sometimes it was by a government that was not representative of the people. For example permission for the removal of the Elgin Marbles was granted by the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire , who forcibly ruled over Greece at the time.
The strongest argument is nationalistic; antiquities are the property of the people if the country of origin and should be recallable by the state. James Cuno ,the president of the Art Institute of Chicago ,disagrees by saying that artifacts “are the cultural property of all humankind…evidence of the world’s ancient past and not that of a particular modern nation, they comprise antiquity , and antiquity knows no borders.
Other arguments include claims that permission was granted by the proper authority, as is occasionally put forward by opponents to the return of the Elgin Marbles , and the general claim that if every museum repatriated all their artifacts they would have little left to exhibit.
The priceless artifacts of antiquity may have been taken recklessly in the first instance, but their repatriation will be a hotly -debated and lengthy process indeed.articles | 0 Σχόλια
What makes great writing
In a world filled with demands on our time, it can be too easy to decide that the simple time commitment needed to finish a long novel isn’t worth it. We may worry that a novel written 100 years ago will be boring or too difficult not to mention that we are bound to be too tired to think that hard at the end of the day.
Meanwhile our society’s continual focus on the new creates a kind of cultural ADHD. Innovations in technology, amusement, fashion, language, covering all aspects of human life and at the same time creating an infinite number of distractions.Gadgets, games, films,TV,happenings,all of which present themselves as great visual pleasures. Therefore, the only chance of a modern city dweller to focus on a book would certainly be one that tends to be new.
However there is a reason why the»oldies» are still the «goodies», why they have managed to endure and break time limits.Nineteenth century novels by Dickens, Austen , Thackeray are indeed good reads, enriched with comedy, romance, mystery, plot twists. Their language challenging capable to give our brain a «good workout» ,preventing it from growing flabby.
One might argue that we can get stories from films too ,but books are special because of the distinctive way in which they enter our minds. Any other form of entertainment is external, something we watch, like a receptive skill. Books ,on the other hand dissolve the barrier that separates us from other minds. It is possible to enter the mind of Jane Austen,when reading one of her novels. All this through the magic of language. We identify with the hopes ,fears, and dreams of others.
As Emily Bronte once beautifully put it»I have dreamed in my life, dreams that stayed with me ever after, and changed my ideas; they have gone through and through me, like wine through water and altered the color of my mind» The same can be said of books -the greater the book , the more likely it is to shade our minds into something wiser and more beautiful.articles | 0 Σχόλια
Blank page. You roll the paper into the typewriter and sit there poised with your hands on the keys. Or maybe you turn on your computer and sit with an empty screen. What do you write?
Many writers and would-be writers have told me how that blank page petrifies them. In this article, we’ll explore my technique for putting together a magazine article from idea to finished product.
It’s a rare day that I have trouble putting those initial words on paper. I always do some preparation ahead of time, then use a slight trick. Ideas for magazine articles are everywhere and the places to write are just as plentiful. Maybe you have an interesting personal experience story that you can capture?
The first question to ask is: who is my audience? What publication will use this article? The possibilities are end-less: adult, women, men, children, teenagers, or youth. Are they in a specialized occupation such as pastors or school-teachers? Are they a certain age? The important thing is to be sure to target a specific audience.
Tell A Story
The key thing to remember is that you’re telling a story to your readers. That means you need a beginning, a middle and an end. It also means you need to think about where you’re taking your reader and create a logical path to that end point.
Beginning Your Magazine Article
The first thing you need to do is get people to read your article, so you need to find a way to grab them. Make sure to choose a topic that you’re an expert on or you feel interested in. When I interview people, I often start the resulting article with a quote or an anecdote from their life. However, you can also set the scene or use anything that will get attention.
With most magazine articles, you talk to a person or people. People like reading about other people, so if your interviewee says something good, use a quote rather than reported speech. This makes your magazine article more interesting.
Ending Your Magazine Article
Finally, end with a bang. This could be an important point, a revelation, or another anecdote or quote. The idea is to satisfy your reader and to get that reader interested in your other writing.
Good writing is rewriting
Try to look at your writing through objective and impersonal eyes. Consider the purpose of your article. Was it to motivate readers to action? Did it achieve it’s purpose?
Sweep through the article and check it for spelling and grammar mistakes. You’d be amazed to know how many articles are submitted for publication with typing errors and simple grammatical mistakes. As a writer, you want to present the best article possible. Give it an additional check. If you have the opportunity, you might want to allow a friend or a fellow writer to read your article and give you feedback.articles | 0 Σχόλια
The arts have a profound ability to enrich the lives they touch and can be an invaluable tool for teachers at all levels to enhance instruction for English Language Learners .By integrating the arts and artmaking into English language teaching and learning, students will develop and deepen their understanding of their own and others’ human experience. In combination with reading, writing, speaking and listening, the arts can open doors for high levels of analysis and also challenge students to explore themselves and their surroundings, and thus find avenues for sophisticated comprehension and communication. The arts convey what it means to be human, challenge the intellect and provide rich experiences in analysis, exploration, reflection, observation, imagination, experimentation, and communication. Here is a demonstration of how the arts teach the young people how to learn by giving them the first step: THE DESIRE TO LEARN!
SALVADOR DALI’S BRAINTEASERarticles | 0 Σχόλια
DON’T BE JUST ANOTHER BRICK IN THE WALL
It’s time to face the challenges of upgrading our educational systems so they are fit for purpose, argues Javier Agüera.
I was born in the 90s. My generation is commonly referred to as the “lost generation” or the “NEETs”, not in education, employment or training. And if you look at the figures, it’s true; youth unemployment has reached a critical point across Europe.
Young people account for two-fifths of the UK’s total unemployment, and the situation is even more critical in my homeland, Spain, where almost 50 per cent of the young workforce is unemployed. More worryingly, 80 per cent of them declare themselves to be happy with this lifestyle.
We’re also called the “C Generation”: the Connected Creators. Thanks to the internet, our impact on the connected world is more powerful than ever. Not only do we have almost-universal access to higher education, which was unthinkable just a few decades ago, but thanks to the internet we can access hexabytes of free information covering almost any field of human knowledge. In fact, it’s safe to say that we are the generation with the most amount of information at our finger tips ever seen.
So, how do the two notions match? The answer is simple: they don’t. Our old education system hasn’t been able to catch up with the present, which is constantly evolving. Rather than providing children with the tools needed to tackle the unexpected and to deal with uncertainty, the world is preparing its children to solve problems that will be outdated by the time they reach the “real world”.
That’s not to say that all current methods are entirely worthless. We just need to give them a shake up, taking into account three main lessons.
First is curiosity. Curiosity should not only be encouraged, but also taught. It isn’t just a matter of wanting to seek information by yourself, but also being able to filter, segregate and prioritize it in an efficient way. Sadly for all of us, the real world doesn’t offer a textbook that contains all of the information needed to pass the exam.
Next, creativity. This is important, helping us to adapt solutions for new, unseen problems which may not have been approached correctly yet. Let children make mistakes; allow them to step out of the circle sometimes and come back in. As Sir Ken Robinson said: “You will hardly come with anything original unless you are prepared to be wrong.”
Finally, compromise. Not just with each other, but with the rest of the world. Instagram grew to almost 30 million users in less than two years, but there are still five billion people not connected to the internet. We are technologically privileged, and at some point children need to see what lies outside of the bubble. They need to understand the impact of their choices.
While many of these ideas are utopian, there are some key, exact actions that we can take immediately.
Teachers are the orchestra directors of education, but they are publicly regarded as being the ticket sellers on the door. In my own experience as a “learner”, I’ve only retained knowledge offered by people that I admire. Educational excellence should be attracted and compensated; and the prestige that teachers used to have should be recovered.
Educational subjects need to be redefined. Not in terms of what subjects are taught, but how they interlink. Most graduates have several “blocks” of knowledge, but the “natural sciences” won’t be linked to “history” or “IT”, even though they can all be easily connected. We have to transform raw knowledge into smart knowledge, which the student can use later in his professional or working life.
Stop the university hype. Seriously. Young people should not be automatically judged for not having a university degree or attending a second-class university. University degrees are no longer as valid as they used to be.
There is a moral duty for us to prepare future generations as best as possible. The next generation will need to be creative and curious and have the ability to compromise. These skills will enable them to decide, on their own, whether they ought to be entrepreneurs or physicists, dentists or electricians. Upgrading our education system is a key part of our heritage.articles | 0 Σχόλια
It has come to my realisation that being a teacher is a tough job – especially when I’m assigned as the person of contact in which I have to be responsible for the students’ progress. It might all sound very academic, but as I get to know my students one by one, I become quite attached to them.
The first week is usually the toughest. The students will have to adjust themselves to the campus environment. Some have no problems in doing so, while others might feel overwhelmed. There are also those who are not confident with themselves, and they don’t have anyone to talk to, and this is where I step in.
There are those who are stubborn and sometimes they try to test me – see how far I can go until I lose my temper. This is the time when I have to be extremely patient – they are boys after all, and they don’t really know me that well yet, and neither do I. These things take time, and effort too.
I personally don’t like to be mean and strict, but most times it leaves me no option. With boys, there is a different approach. When we tell them nicely that they need to improve, they won’t listen. They’ll only do it when they see me being totally pissed off.
It kind of reminds me of Micah, in a way. Repetition works. But sometimes I worry what will happen by the time they finish the course. Who’s going to guide them? Tell them they need to improve? Encourage them and make sure they believe more in themselves?
I also wonder why I have so much faith in them. Sometimes I wonder if perhaps I’m too naive, because the students don’t think they’re good enough, therefore they don’t want to try their hardest. When exams are nearing, I can only hope that they can make it, and I keep telling them to push themselves hard up to the point when they can’t take it anymore. Because that’s the moment when they finally know that they’ve worked hard. And hard work will always reap something good.
That’s what I believe, and I hope my students believe it too. Unfortunately, only some do.
Week by week, as a teacher, it is my personal pride to see them grow. And it is my heart being broken to see some resisting to improve.
When they succeed, I feel joyful.
When they fail, I fail too.
And today, I saw both happened.
So I cry on my own, crying of my own failures. Crying because I feel useless.
Being a teacher is a tough job. But one’s gotta do it. And that person is me. So to motivate myself, I attach something nice for me to read, whenever I feel down. And I’d like to share it with you as well.
THE CREATION OF THE TEACHER
The Good Lord was creating teachers. It was His sixth day of ‘overtime’ and He knew that this was a tremendous responsibility for teachers would touch the lives of so many impressionable young children. An angel appeared to Him and said, “You are taking a long time to figure this one out.”
“Yes,” said the Lord, ” but have you read the specs on this order?”
…must stand above all students, yet be on their level
… must be able to do 180 things not connected with the subject being taught
… must run on coffee, coke and leftovers,
… must communicate vital knowledge to all students daily and be right most of the time
… must have more time for others than for herself/himself
… must have a smile that can endure through pay cuts, problematic children, and worried parents
… must go on teaching when parents question every move and others are not supportive
… must have 6 pair of hands.
“Six pair of hands, ” said the angel, “that’s impossible”
“Well, ” said the Lord, ” it is not the hands that are the problem. It is the three pairs of eyes that are presenting the most difficulty!”
The angel looked incredulous, ” Three pairs of eyes…on a standard model?”
The Lord nodded His head, ” One pair can see a student for what he is and not what others have labeled him as. Another pair of eyes is in the back of the teacher’s head to see what should not be seen, but what must be known. The eyes in the front are only to look at the child as he/she ‘acts out’ in order to reflect, ” I understand and I still believe in you”,
without so much as saying a word to the child.”
“Lord, ” said the angel, ” this is a very large project and I think
you should work on it tomorrow”.
“I can’t,” said the Lord, ” for I have come very close to creating something much like Myself. I have one that comes to work when he/she is sick…..teaches a class of children that do not want to learn….has a special place in his/her heart for children who are not his/her own…..understands the struggles of those who have difficulty….never takes the students for granted…”
The angel looked closely at the model the Lord was creating.
“It is too soft-hearted, ” said the angel.
“Yes,” said the Lord, ” but also tough, You can not imagine what this teacher can endure or do, if necessary”.
“Can this teacher think?” asked the angel.
“Not only think,” said the Lord,. “but reason and compromise.”
The angel came closer to have a better look at the model and ran his finger
over the teacher’s cheek.
“Well, Lord, ” said the angel, your job looks fine but there is a leak. I told you that you were putting too much into this model.
You can not imagine the stress that will be placed upon the teacher.”
The Lord moved in closer and lifted the drop of moisture from the teacher’s cheek.
It shone and glistened in the light.
“It is not a leak,” He said, “It is a tear.”
“A tear? What is that?” asked the angel, “What is a tear for?”
The Lord replied with great thought, ” It is for the joy and pride of seeing a child accomplish even the smallest task. It is for the loneliness of children who have a hard time to fit in and it is for compassion for the feelings of their parents. It comes from the pain of not being able to reach some children and the disappointment those children feel in themselves. It comes often when a teacher has been with a class for a year and must say good-bye to those students
and get ready to welcome a new class.”
“My, ” said the angel, ” The tear thing is a great idea…You are a genius!!”
The Lord looked somber, “I didn’t put it there.”
SMOKING AMONG TEENS
While smoking is on the decline among adults,the latest US Surgeon-General’s report indicates that increasing numbers of youngsters are taking up the habit. Perhaps, the main reason for this alarming fact is the seductive advertising campaigns aimed at young people by the tobacco companies .Other factors include the lack of awareness on the part of school children of the dangers of smoking and the widespread availability of cigarettes. Furthermore, smoking retains an image of sophisticated maturity among young people who are in the process of moulding themselves into what they want to be.
Teens seem more abrasive when they smoke and feel older and wiser. Nicotine suppresses feelings,one’s appetite for food and is used as stimulation after sex and is a good way to relax from troubles and feelings of insecurities.
Smokers go to designated areas and congregate around the one who has the light even when the weather is sub-zero. There they are, huddled up against each other, taking in the last drag before the break is over.
Teens like to act as if they are someone special or dangerous. By smoking they can act on those feelings. Because it is so forbidden it becomes more alluring to teens. The idea that they are breaking the law or going against their parents and school is an addiction within itself. Kids like to get attention.They crave attention.
Nicotine is considered the number one entrance drug into other substance abuse problems. Why is tobacco so addicting? Nicotine acts as a stimulant of the body,mind and spirit. When the body tolerance levels high, then one ends up needing to use larger doses of nicotine to maintain a certain level of the physiological effect
Common experiences of teen smokers
-they tried their first cigarette in the 6th or 7th grade.
-they often do not perform well at school.
-they feel like they are not part of school.
-they become isolated from other students.
-they can’t perform as well at sport events.
-they are reported to school officials for skipping classes.
-they are likely to start using illegal substances and experiment on drugs and alcohol.
-they experience pressure from home and school and use tobacco as a form of relief.
-they enjoy trying to hide their smoking habit.
Measures to combat smoking
The government must ban all cigarette advertising in order to reverse this disturbing trend.
Secondly,by introducing a” negative image »advertising campaign, they could expose the truth-that smoking is a dangerous habit which kills thousands of people every year.
Another way to overcome this problem would be to impose heavier taxes thus increase the cost in the retail price of cigarettes. Consequently ,smoking would become far too costly a habit for most young people to maintain. Teachers could also tell their students what will happen to them if they smoke and teach them about the wide variety of ailments that smoking produces . Finally,a ban on the sales of cigarettes to under -eighteens would be effective as long as it were strictly enforced.
All in all,it would be easy to reduce the number of young people that smoke or even eliminate smoking altogether, were it not for the lackadaisical attitudes of those who have the power to do something about it. Fortunately nowadays there is an increase in youth exposure to mass media campaigns. Let us not forget that where there is a will there is always a way to perform the best of miracles.
Answer the following questions
1 What is the alarming fact regarding smoking?
2 Explain how advertising can be seductive when it comes to tobacco brands.
3 How can smoking enhance a teenager’s moulding process?
4 Is a strict ,total ban on smoking always effective for the young?
5 What is the connection between smoking and drug abuse?
6 Do you agree that the higher the price the less cigarettes puffed away at?
7 Are the negative,shocking images depicted on the packets of cigarettes a strong deterrent against smoking?
8 Who in your opinion are to blame for assuming a lackadaisical role and attitude to the problem of teen smoking?
9 If a young teenager grows in a family with non-smoker parents, is this enough to guarantee the fact that he/she will not take up the habit?
10 Which quality in one’s personality is an asset ensuring once abstinence from smoking and all substance abuse?
Some catchy anti-smoking quotes for thought……
Be smart,don’t smoke.
Smoking?….you must be joking!!!
Too much smoke will leave you broke.
Put it out before it puts you out.
Smoking is like paying someone to kill you. They’re rich;you’re dead.
Your freedom ends where my nose begins.
Trash the Ash.
Live it or Burn it.
Tar the roads not your lungs.
Tobacco companies kill their best customers.
Finally a joke or two…
The giant cigarette lighter
A guy walks into a bar,sits down next to another guy and immediately notices the guy has a very large Bic cigarette lighter.
The first guy says “Wow,that’s a huge lighter…where did you get it?”
The guy replies “A genie from this bottle granted me one wish.”
“Great, can I try it?”
The first guy rubs the bottle and the genie appears. “You are granted one wish” says the genie.
The guy says “I want a million bucks!”
A few minutes go by and suddenly the bar door swings open and pouring in come ducks. Thousands of ducks falling all over each other through the bar door.
“I can’t believe this”, says the guy who had just placed his wish, “I asked for a million bucks ,not a million ducks!”
The second guy then says,”Do you really think I wished for a 12 inch Bic?”
Two old ladies were outside their nursing home ,having a smoke when it started to rain. One of the ladies pulled out a condom,cut off the end,put it over her cigarette and continued smoking.
Lady 1 :”What’s that?”
Lady2 : “A condom. This way my cigarette doesn’t get wet”.
Lady 1 :”Where did you get it?”
Lady 2 : “You can get them at any drugstore”.
The next day… Lady 1 hobbles herself into the local drugstore and announces to the pharmacist that she wants a box of condoms. The guy looks at her kind of strangely (she is ,after all, over 80 years of age), but politely asks her what brand she prefers.
Lady 1 : “It doesn’t matter as long as it fits a Camel”.
So breathe healthily and live happily!!!!articles | 0 Σχόλια