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As we are at the start of the course, this seems a good moment to offer some advice on how to make the task of learning English easier.


Some Strategies for Learning English

Learning English is by no means easy. It takes great diligence and prolonged effort.


Nevertheless, while you cannot expect to gain a good command of English without sustained hard work, there are various helpful learning strategies you can employ to make the task easier. Here are some of them.


1. Do not treat all new words in exactly the same way. Have you ever complained about your memory because you find it simply impossible to memorize all the new words you are learning? But, in fact, it is not your memory that is at fault. If you cram your head with too many new words at a time, some of them are bound to be crowded out. What you need to do is to deal with new words in different ways according to how frequently they occur in everyday use. While active words demand constant practice and useful words must be committed to memory, words that do not often occur in everyday situations require just a nodding acquaintance. You will find concentrating on active and useful words the most effective route to enlarging your vocabulary.

1. 不要以完全同样的方式对待所有的生词。你可曾因为简直无法记住所学的所有生词而抱怨自己的记忆力太差?其实,责任并不在你的记忆力。如果你一下子把太多的生词塞进头脑,必定有一些生词会被挤出来。你需要做的是根据生词日常使用的频率以不同的方式对待它们。积极词汇需要经常练习,有用的词汇必须牢记,而在日常情况下不常出现的词只需见到时认识即可。你会发现把注意力集中于积极有用的词上是扩大词汇量最有效的途径。

2. Watch out for idiomatic ways of saying things. Have you ever wondered why we say, "I am interested in English", but "I am good at French"? And have you ever asked yourself why native English speakers say, "learn the news or secret", but "learn of someone's success or arrival"? These are all examples of idiomatic usage. In learning English, you must pay attention not only to the meaning of a word, but also to the way native speakers use it in their daily lives.

2.密切注意地道的表达方式。你可曾纳闷过,为什么我们说“我对英语感兴趣”是“I'm interested in English”,而说“我精于法语”则是“I'm good at French”?你可曾问过自己,为什么以英语为母语的人说“获悉消息或秘密”是“learn the news or secret”,而“获悉某人的成功或到来”却是“learn of someone's success or arrival”?这些都是惯用法的例子。在学习英语时,你不仅必须注意词义,还必须注意以英语为母语的人在日常生活中如何使用它。

3. Listen to English every day. Listening to English on a regular basis will not only improve your ear, but will also help you build your speaking skills. In addition to language tapes especially prepared for your course, you can also listen to English radio broadcasts, watch English TV, and see English movies. The first time you listen to a taped conversation or passage in English, you may not be able to catch a great deal. Try to get its general meaning first and listen to it over and over again. You will find that with each repetition you will get something more.


4. Seize opportunities to speak. It is true that there are few situations at school where you have to communicate in English, but you can seek out opportunities to practice speaking the language. Talking with your classmates, for example, can be an easy and enjoyable way to get some practice. Also try to find native speakers on your campus and feel free to talk with them. Perhaps the easiest way to practice speaking is to rehearse aloud, since this can be done at any time, in any place, and without a partner. For instance, you can look at pictures or objects around you and try to describe them in detail. You can also rehearse everyday situations. After you have made a purchase in a shop or finished a meal in a restaurant and paid the check, pretend that all this happened in an English-speaking country and try to act it out in English.


5. Read widely. It is important to read widely because in our learning environment, reading is the main and most reliable source of lan

guage input. When you choose reading materials, look for things that you find

interesting, that you can understand without relying too much on a dictionary. A page a day is a good way to start. As you go on, you will find that you can do more pages a day and handle materials at a higher level of difficulty.


6. Write regularly. Writing is a good way to practice what you already know. Apart from compositions assigned by your teacher, you may find your own reasons for writing. A pen pal provides good motivation; you will learn a lot by trying to communicate with someone who shares your interests, but comes from a different culture. Other ways to write regularly include keeping a diary, writing a short story and summarizing the daily news.


Language learning is a process of accumulation. It pays to absorb as much as you can from reading and listening and then try to put what you have learned into practice through speaking and writing.



At sixty-five Francis Chichester set out to sail single-handed round the world. This is the story of that adventure.


Sailing Round the World

Before he sailed round the world single-handed, Francis Chichester had already surprised his friends several times. He had tried to fly round the world but failed. That was in 1931.


The years passed. He gave up flying and began sailing. He enjoyed it greatly. Chichester was already 58 years old when he won the first solo transatlantic sailing race. His old dream of going round the world came back, but this time he would sail. His friends and doctors did not think he could do it, as he had lung cancer. But Chichester was determined to carry out his plan. In August, 1966, at the age of nearly sixty-five, an age when many men retire, he began the greatest voyage of his life. Soon, he was away in his new 16-metre boat, Gipsy Moth.


Chichester followed the route of the great nineteenth century clipper ships. But the clippers had had plenty of crew. Chichester did it all by himself, even after the main steering device had been damaged by gales. Chichester covered 14,100 miles before stopping in Sydney, Australia. This was more than twice the distance anyone had previously sailed alone.

奇切斯特沿着19世纪大型三桅帆船的航线航行。不过,三桅帆船拥有众多船员,而奇切斯特却是独个儿扬帆破浪,即使在主要转舵装置被大风刮坏之后仍是这样。奇切斯特一直航行了14 100英里,到了澳大利亚的悉尼港才停船靠岸。这段航程比以往单人驾舟航海的最远航程还多一倍多。

He arrived in Australia on 12 December, just 107 days out from England. He received a warm welcome from the Australians and from his family who had flown there to meet him. On shore, Chichester could not walk without help. Everybody said the same thing: he had done enough; he must not go any further. But he did not listen.


After resting in Sydney for a few weeks, Chichester set off once more in spite of his friends' attempts to dissuade him. The second half of his voyage was by far the more dangerous part, during which he sailed round the treacherous Cape Horn.


On 29 January he left Australia. The next night, the blackest he had ever known, the sea became so rough that the boat almost turned over. Food, clothes, and broken

glass were all mixed together. Fortunately, the damage to the boat was not too serious. Chichester calmly got into bed and went to sleep. When he woke up, the sea had become calm again. Still, he could not help thinking that if anything should happen, the nearest person he could contact by radio, unless there was a ship nearby, would be on an island 885 miles away.


After succeeding in sailing round Cape Horn, Chichester sent the following radio message to London: "I feel as if I had wakened from a nightmare. Wild horses could not drag me down to Cape Horn and that sinister Southern Ocean again."


Just before 9 o'clock on Sunday evening 28 May, 1967, he arrived back in England, where a quarter of a million people were waiting to welcome him. Queen Elizabeth II knighted him with the very sword that Queen Elizabeth I had used almost 400 years earlier to knight Sir Francis Drake after he had sailed round the world for the first time. The whole voyage from England and back had covered 28,500 miles. It had taken him nine months, of which the sailing time was 226 days. He had done what he wanted to accomplish.


年前,伊丽莎白一世也曾手持同一把宝剑,把爵位赐予完成首次环球航行的弗朗西斯·德雷克爵士。从英国出发,再回到英国,整个航程长达28 500英里。奇切斯特一共花了九个月的时间,其中实际航行时间为226天。他终于完成了他想完成的伟业。

Like many other adventurers, Chichester had experienced fear and conquered it. In doing so, he had undoubtedly learnt something about himself. Moreover, in the modern age when human beings depend so much on machines, he had given men throughout the world new pride.



They say that blood is thicker than water, that our relatives are more important to us than others. Everyone was so kind to the old lady on her birthday. Surely her daughter would make an even bigger effort to please her?


The Present

It was the old lady's birthday.


She got up early to be ready for the post. From the second floor flat she could see the postman when he came down the street, and the little boy from the ground floor brought up her letters on the rare occasions when anything came.


Today she was sure there would be something. Myra wouldn't forget her mother's birthday, even if she seldom wrote at other times. Of course Myra was busy. Her husband had been made Mayor, and Myra herself had got a medal for her work for the aged.


The old lady was proud of Myra, but Enid was the daughter she loved. Enid had never married, but had seemed content to live with her mother, and teach in a primary school round the corner.


One evening, however, Enid said, "I've arranged for Mrs. Morrison to look after you for a few days, Mother. Tomorrow I have to go into hospital – just a minor operation. I'll soon be home."


In the morning she went, but never came back – she died on the operating table. Myra came to the funeral, and in her efficient way arranged for Mrs. Morrison to come in and light the fire and give the old lady her breakfast.


Two years ago that was, and since then Myra had been to see her mother three times, but her husband never.



The old lady was eighty today. She had put on her best dress. Perhaps – perhaps Myra might come. After all, eighty was a special birthday, another decade lived or endured just as you chose to look at it.


Even if Myra did not come, she would send a present. The old lady was sure of that. Two spots of colour brightened her cheeks. She was excited – like a child. She would enjoy her day.


Yesterday Mrs. Morrison had given the flat an extra clean, and today she had brought a card and a bunch of marigolds when she came to do the breakfast. Mrs. Grant downstairs had made a cake, and in the afternoon she was going down there to tea. The little boy, Johnnie, had been up with a packet of mints, and said he wouldn't go out to play until the post had come.


"I guess you'll get lots and lots of presents," he said. "I did last week when I was six. "


What would she like? A pair of slippers perhaps. Or a new cardigan. A cardigan would be lovely. Blue's such a pretty colour. Jim had always liked her in blue. Or a table lamp. Or a book, a travel book, with pictures, or a little clock, with clear black numbers. So many lovely things.


She stood by the window, watching. The postman turned round the corner on his bicycle. Her heart beat fast. Johnnie had seen him too and ran to the gate.


Then clatter, clatter up the stairs. Johnnie knocked at her door.



"Granny, granny," he shouted, "I've got your post."


He gave her four envelopes. Three were unsealed cards from old friends. The fourth was sealed, in Myra's writing. The old lady felt a pang of disappointment.


"No parcel, Johnnie?"


"No, granny."


Maybe the parcel was too large to come by letter post. That was it. It would come later by parcel post. She must be patient.



Almost reluctantly she tore the envelope open. Folded in the card was a piece of paper. Written on the card was a message under the printed Happy Birthday – Buy yourself something nice with the cheque, Myra and Harold.


The cheque fluttered to the floor like a bird with a broken wing. Slowly the old lady stooped to pick it up. Her present, her lovely present. With trembling fingers she tore it into little bits.



Many people in the United States spend most of their free time watching television. Certainly, there are many worthwhile programs on television, including news, educational programs for children, programs on current social problems, plays, movies, concerts, and so on. Nevertheless, perhaps people should not be spending so much of their time in front of the TV. Mr. Mayer imagines what we might do if we were forced to find other activities.


Turning Off TV: A Quiet Hour Robert Mayer

I would like to propose that for sixty to ninety minutes each evening, right after the early evening news, all television broadcasting in the United States be prohibited by law.


Let us take a serious, reasonable look at what the results might be if such a proposal were accepted. Families might use the time for a real family hour. Without the distraction of TV, they might sit around together after dinner and actually talk to one another. It is well known that many of our problems – everything, in fact, from the generation gap to the high divorce rate to some forms of mental illness

– are caused at least in part by failure to communicate. We do not tell each other what is disturbing us. The result is emotional difficulty of one kind or another. By using the quiet family hour to discuss our problems, we might get to know each other better, and to like each other better.


On evenings when such talk is unnecessary, families could rediscover more active pastimes. Freed from TV, forced to find their own activities, they might take a ride together to watch the sunset. Or they might take a walk together (remember feet?) and see the neighborhood with fresh, new eyes.


With free time and no TV, children and adults might rediscover reading. There is more entertainment in a good book than in a month of typical TV programming. Educators report that the generation growing up with television can barely write an English sentence, even at the college level. Writing is often learned from reading.

A more literate new generation could be a product of the quiet hour.


A different form of reading might also be done, as it was in the past: reading aloud. Few pastimes bring a family closer together than gathering around and listening to mother or father read a good story. The quiet hour could become the story hour. When the quiet hour ends, the TV networks might even be forced to come up with better shows in order to get us back from our newly discovered activities.


At first glance, the idea of an hour without TV seems radical. What will parents do without the electronic baby-sitter? How will we spend the time? But it is not radical at all. It has been only twenty-five years since television came to control American free time. Those of us thirty-five and older can remember childhoods without television, spent partly with radio – which at least involved the listener's imagination – but also with reading, learning, talking, playing games, inventing new activities. It wasn't that difficult. Honest. The truth is we had a ball.




Have you ever dreamed of becoming a writer, only to be put off by fears that you lacked the ability? If so, then reading Linda Stafford's story will have you reaching for your pen with renewed hope.


I Never Write Right Linda Stafford

When I was 15, I announced to my English class that I was going to write and illustrate my own books. Half of the students nearly fell out of their chairs laughing.


"Don't be silly. Only geniuses can become writers," the English teacher said. "And you are getting a D this semester."


I was so embarrassed that I burst into tears. That night I wrote a short, sad poem about broken dreams and mailed it to the Capper's Weekly. To my astonishment they published it, and sent me two dollars. I was a published and paid writer! I showed my teacher and fellow students. They laughed.


"Just plain dumb luck," the teacher said.


I'd tasted success. I'd sold the first thing I'd ever written. That was more than any of them had done, and if it was "just plain dumb luck," that was fine with me.


During the next two years I sold dozens of poems, letters, jokes and recipes. By the time I graduated from high school (with a C-minus average), I had scrapbooks filled with my published work. I never mentioned my writing to my teachers, friends or my family again. They were dream killers. And if people must choose between their friends and dreams, they must always choose the latter.



But sometimes you do find a friend who supports your dreams. "It's easy to write a book," my new friend told me. "You can do it."


"I don't know if I'm smart enough," I said, suddenly feeling 15 again and hearing echoes of laughter.


"Nonsense!" she said. "Anyone can write a book if they want to."


I had four children at the time, and the oldest was only four. We lived on a goat farm in Oklahoma, miles from anyone. All I had to do each day was take care of four kids, milk goats, and do the cooking, laundry and gardening.


While the children slept, I typed on my ancient typewriter. I wrote what I felt. It took nine months, just like a baby.


I chose a publisher at random and put the manuscript in an empty diapers package, the only box I could find. The letter I enclosed read: "I wrote this book myself, and I hope you like it. I also drew the illustrations. Chapters 6 and 12 are my favorites. Thank you."


I tied a string around the diaper box and mailed it without a self-addressed stamped envelope, and without making a copy of the manuscript. A month later I received a contract, an advance on royalties and a request to start working on another book.


Crying Wind became a bestseller, was translated into 15 languages and sold worldwide. I appeared on TV talk shows during the day and changed diapers at night.

I traveled from New York to California and Canada on promotional tours. My first book also became required reading in Native American schools in Canada.



It took six months to write my next book. My Searching Heart also became a bestseller. My next novel, When I Give My Heart, was finished in only three weeks.


People ask what college I attended, what degree I have, and what qualifications I have to be a writer. The answer is none. I just write. I'm not a genius, I'm not gifted and don't write right. I'm not disciplined, either, and spend more time with my children and friends than I do writing.


I didn't own a thesaurus until four years ago and I use a small Webster's dictionary that I bought for 89 cents. I use an electric typewriter that I paid $129 for six years ago. I've never used a word processor. I do all the cooking, cleaning and laundry for a family of six and fit my writing in a few minutes here and there.

I write everything in longhand while sitting on the sofa with my four kids, eating pizza and watching TV. When the book is finished, I type it and mail it to the publisher.


I've written eight books. Four have been published, and three are still out with the publishers. One stinks.


To all those who dream of writing, I'm shouting at you, "Yes, you can! Yes, you can!" I don't write right, but I've beaten the odds. Writing isn't difficult, it's fun, and anyone can write a book if they set their mind on it. Of course, a little dumb luck doesn't hurt.



Sam set out to improve efficiency at the shirt factory but, as we find out later in this unit, his plans turned out not quite as he had expected.


Sam Adams, Industrial Engineer

If you ask my mother how I happened to become an industrial engineer, she'll tell you that I have always been one.


She means that I have always wanted everything to be well organized and neat. When I was still in elementary school, I liked to keep my socks in the upper left-hand drawer of my bureau, my underwear in the upper right drawer, shirts in the middle drawer, and pants, neatly folded, in the bottom drawer.


In fact, I was the efficiency expert for the whole family. I used to organize my father's tools, my mother's kitchen utensils, my sister's boyfriends.


I needed to be efficient. I wanted to be well organized. For me, there was a place for everything and everything was always in its place. These qualities gave me a good foundation for a career in industrial engineering.


Unfortunately, I was also a bit bossy and I wasn't a very good listener. You'll see what I mean when I tell you about the first project I ever did after I finished my bachelor's degree at the university.


After graduation I returned home to my small town in Indiana. I didn't have a job yet. Mr. Hobbs, a friend of my father's, owned a small shirt factory in town. Within the past five years it had grown from twenty to eighty workers. Mr. Hobbs

was worried that his plant was getting too big and inefficient, so he asked me to come in on a short-term basis as a consultant.



I went to the plant and spent about a week looking around and making notes. I was really amazed at what I saw.


Most curious of all, there was no quality control whatsoever. No one inspected the final product of the factory. As a result some of the shirts that were put in boxes for shipment were missing one or two buttons, the collar, even a sleeve sometimes!


The working conditions were poor. The tables where the workers sat were very high and uncomfortable. Except for a half hour at lunchtime, there were no breaks in the day to relieve the boring work. There was no music. The walls of the workrooms were a dull gray color. I was amazed that the workers hadn't gone on strike.


Furthermore, the work flow was irregular. There was one especially absent-minded young man in the assembly line who sewed on buttons. After a while I recognized him as "Big Jim," who used to sit behind me in math class in high school. He was very slow and all the shirts were held up at his position. Workers beyond him in line on his shift had to wait with nothing to do; therefore, a great deal of time and efficiency were lost as Big Jim daydreamed while he worked. All week I wondered why he wasn't fired.



After I made observations for a week, Mr. Hobbs asked me for an oral report of my findings. I covered my major points by telling him the following:



"If you have a quality control inspection, you will greatly improve your finished product."


"If the assembly line is redesigned, a smooth work flow can be achieved and time and energy can be saved."


"If you decrease the height of the worktables, the machine operators will work more comfortably."


"If the management provides pleasant background music and beautifies the dull setting, the factory will be much more productive."


"If the workers have a fifteen-minute coffee break in the morning and afternoon, they will be more efficient."


"If excellent work results in frequent pay increases or promotions, the workers will have greater incentive to produce."


Mr. Hobbs thanked me for this report and told me he would talk over my suggestions with his brother, the co-owner and manager of the factory. "We're interested in progress here," he said. "We want to keep up with the times."


He also gave me a check for $100 and a box of shirts with his compliments.



The author finds out that good intentions alone are not enough when his attempt to be kind to an old man leaves them both feeling worse than before.


The Sampler

In a certain store where they sell puddings, a number of these delicious things are laid out in a row during the Christmas season. Here you may select the one which is most to your taste, and you are even allowed to sample them before coming to a decision.


I have often wondered whether some people, who had no intention of making a purchase, would take advantage of this privilege. One day I asked this question of the shop girl, and I learned it was indeed the case.


"Now there's one old gentleman, for instance," she told me, "he comes here almost every week and samples each one of the puddings, though he never buys anything, and I suspect he never will. I remember him from last year and the year before that, too. Well, let him come if he wants it, and welcome to it. And what's more, I hope there are a lot more stores where he can go and get his share. He looks as if he needed it all right, and I suppose they can afford it."


She was still speaking when an elderly gentleman limped up to the counter and began looking closely at the row of puddings with great interest.


"Why, that's the very gentleman I've been telling you about," whispered the shop girl. "Just watch him now." And then turning to him: "Would you like to sample them, sir? Here's a spoon for you to use."


The elderly gentleman, who was poorly but neatly dressed, accepted the spoon and began eagerly to sample one after another of the puddings, only breaking off occasionally to wipe his red eyes with a large torn handkerchief.


"This is quite good."


"This is not bad either, but a little too heavy."


All the time it was quite evident that he sincerely believed that he might eventually buy one of these puddings, and I am positive that he did not for a moment feel that he was in any way cheating the store. Poor old chap! Probably he had come down in the world and this sampling was all that was left him from the time when he could afford to come and select his favorite pudding.


Amidst the crowd of happy, prosperous looking Christmas shoppers, the little black figure of the old man seemed pitiful and out of place, and in a burst of benevolence, I went up to him and said:


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