Unit 1 Fresh Start



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Unit 1 Fresh Start

  • Evelyn Herald
  • College life
  • College life
  • classroom
  • Basketball match
  • Star player

I Pre-reading Questions

  • Do you remember your first days at college? Did anything special happen then?
  • Are you afraid of making mistakes that cause embarrassment?
  • Is entering an elite university the only way to success?

Background information (1)

  • About the text and the author
  • The text, written by Evelyn Herald (contemporary), appeared in Nutshell magazine in 1989.

Text-based questions

  • What words and phrases can you use to describe Evelyn’s first days at college?
  • How many incidents does Evelyn recount? What are they?
  • How does the author organize the incidents in the text?
  • 1. Use words (e.g.,adjectives) and phrases to describe Evelyn’s first days at college
  • Feeling first-gradish
  • Nervous
  • Anxious
  • worried
  • 2. How many incidents does Evelyn recount? What are they?
  • 3
  • Sitting in the wrong class
  • Falling down in the cafeteria
  • Witnessing the upper class football player falling down in the cafeteria
  • 3. How does the author organize the incidents in the text?
  • Chronological order
  • Narrative writing
  • Cf. expository writing & argumentative writing

Narrative writing

  • A text which describes a sequence of real or unreal events.
  • It derives from the Latin verb narrare, which means "to recount“.
  • The point/message is shown through dialogues, actions or events.

How to write a narrative? (Tips)

  • Narratives are stories. Narratives are plots. They are essays that tell a story — hopefully in an interesting way — that also convey themes.
  • A narrative is a moving picture. Like description, narratives need to have a rich texture of details so that the reader is seeing, hearing, smelling, and touching. The reader should experience the story, not simply hear it.
  • Basic story structure: beginning/setting – development – climax–ending/conclusion

This Text: How is Evelyn’s story narrated?

  • The three incidents are narrated chronologically and related to one another by their implicit message
  • – the mistakes the author made and her reaction toward the mistakes.

Text structure

  • How many parts can the text be divided into?
  • Introduction (Para 1)
  • Body-- 3 incidents (Para. 2-9)
  • Conclusion (Para. 10-14)

Example 1: HSK

  • China's Hanyu Shuiping Kaoshi, known as HSK or the Chinese Proficiency Test is a standardized test at the state level designed and developed by the HSK Centre of Beijing Language and Culture University to measure the Chinese proficiency of foreigners, overseas Chinese and students from Chinese national minorities. The project was formally examined and appraised on February 1990 by specialists of the field. HSK is divided into two categories, namely, … Certificates of Chinese Proficiency will be issued to those who have secured the required scores.

Expositive writing

  • To inform, explain, describe, or define the author’s subject to the reader
  • To ‘expose’ information
  • A well-written exposition remains focused on its topic and provides facts in order to inform its reader. It should be unbiased, accurate, and use a scholarly third person tone.
  • Examples of expository writing can be found in magazine and newspaper articles, non-fiction books, travel brochures, business reports, memorandums, professional journal and encyclopedia articles and many other types of informative writing.
  • One of the most familiar and basic forms of expository writing is the five-paragraph essay, which features an introduction with a clear thesis statement, three main body paragraphs and a conclusion.

Example 2: My View on Bicycles in China

  • China is called the kingdom of bicycles…
  • Compared with cars, bikes have many advantages. First, they are very handy and convenient. … Second, they are not very expensive, and almost every family can afford them. Third, …
  •   However, bicycles also have some disadvantages. For example, they make streets crowded and are likely to cause traffic accidents. … But despite the disadvantages, the bicycle is still very useful, convenient and necessary means of transportation in China. And I do believe it will still be so in future.

Argumentative writing

  • Also called persuasive writing/ essay.
  • Structure
    • Introduction
    • Body paragraphs
    • Conclusion

Introduction - a strong opening statement to get the reader's attention.

  • Introduction - a strong opening statement to get the reader's attention.
    • This statement leads to the main point of the essay.
    • The thesis is usually stated in the last sentence of the introduction.
    • It is the thesis or idea to which you should constantly refer back in your argument.

Body paragraphs - Points of argument to back up your theory.

  • Body paragraphs - Points of argument to back up your theory.
    • Argument - first point.
      • Topic sentence - introduces the first point of the argument.
      • First supporting sentence - explains the topic sentence in more detail.
      • Second supporting sentences - supports the ideas with evidence or facts.
      • Concluding sentence - summation of what has just been said. It can lead on to the next argument or point
    • Argument –second point…
  • Conclusion
    • Summarizes the main points or ideas
    • Evaluates what has been stated
    • Justifies the original statement
    • Recommends an outcome

About Writing Evaluation

  • Content
    • Relevance
    • Clarity (thesis statement; topic sentence)
    • Coherence/ Logic
    • Adequacy
  • Language
    • Grammar
    • Vocabulary
    • Syntax
    • Mechanics (spelling, punctuation, etc.)
  • Be relevant/ to the point.
  • Be clear and concise.
  • Be coherent.
  • Be adequate.
  • Be reader-friendly.

II Text Analysis

  • In this autobiographical essay, Evelyn Herald recounts her embarrassing moments during her first days of college. With a chronologically balanced pattern of narration, the author focuses on three incidents– sitting in the wrong class, falling down in the cafeteria and witnessing the upper-class football player having the same experience. Coupling narration with description, she gives us a detailed account of the process, the after-effect and the significant insight into herself.

Rhetoric Features:

  • Rhetoric Features:
  • The extensive use of words which are most likely to impress readers with pictures, vivid, tangible or even funny.
  • E.g.: With that thought in mind, I raised my head, squared my shoulders, and set out in the direction of my dorm.
  • I only hope his attention was drawn to my airs of assurance rather than to my shaking knees.
  • Para5: …to assume the scientific pose of a biology major, bending slightly forward, tensing my arms in preparation for furious notetaking, and cursing under my breath…
  • Para 6:
  • Offer vivid pictures of what she did or how she looked in some embarrassing situations.

Structure of the text (1)

    • Text Structure
    • Para 1
    • Introductory paragraph
    • Para 2-9
    • The author recalls a few incidents during her first days of college.
    • Para 10-14
    • Concluding part

Comprehension of the text Part 1

  • What does “first-gradish” mean?
  • Why did the author have the impression that “ everyone on campus was watching me”?
  • Q1: First-gradish: having the qualities and characteristics of a first-grade student. The first-gradish feeling is a mixture of helpless, disorientation, self-consciousness, and a lack of confidence.
  • “ish” is a widely used suffix which means characteristic of…;like
  • Childish
  • Selfish
  • bookish
  • Why did the author have the impression that “ everyone on campus was watching me”?
  • Q2:The author, being over-sensitive. Was uneasy with her identity as a freshman. She thought a new student would attract others’ attention, as what she did or said was liable to be too naïve to be right

distinct: clearly seen, heard, felt, understood, etc.; noticeable

    • distinct: clearly seen, heard, felt, understood, etc.; noticeable
    • Eg: Now that the boss was no longer present, there was a ~ change in her attitude.
  • There is a distinct possibility that she won't come.
  • The children have distinct memories of their grandfather in his last days.
  • Language Points in paragraph 1

cf.

    • cf.
    • distinctive:
    • Anything clearly noticed is distinct; There is a distinct smell of beer in this room.
    • A thing or quality that is clearly different from others of its kind is distinctive or distinct from.
    • Beer has a very distinctive smell; it’s quite distinct from the smell of wine.
  • My plan was to keep my ears open and my mouth shut and hope no one would notice I was a freshman.
  • I planned to be observant (watch carefully) and silent so that no one would notice that I was just a newcomer of the college.

Part 2

  • Pa2-5 Qs
  • Q1:Why did the author exclaim “ what confidence, what reserve, what muscles!” when she saw the football player?
  • Q2: Why is the word “ marched” used in the first sentence of pa 3?
  • Q3:Why did a cold sweat break out on the back of her neck?
  • Q4: How many questions are used in pa3 and pa5? Why does the author raised these questions?
  • A1: College life was a new experience to the author. Her marvel at the real football player showed her excitement about her new life. Also, this foreshadows the later development of the essay.

Q2: Why is the word “ marched” used in the first sentence of pa 3?

  • Q2: Why is the word “ marched” used in the first sentence of pa 3?
  • The author did not want others to notice that she was a freshman. With enough preparation the previous day, she was sure she could find the right room without asking the way or checking the map. The word “ march” is used to show her pretence of confidence.
  • Q3:Why did a cold sweat break out on the back of her neck?
  • She found she was in the wrong class. She was supposed to attend the course of American literature, but she was sitting in the biology class by mistake.
  • Q4: How many questions are used in pa3 and pa5? Why does the author raised these questions?
  • A4: Four questions are asked here. Being a freshman, she was not familiar with life in college. She was at a loss as to what to do when something unexpected happened, These questions are used to show her bewilderment.

language points in pa2-5

  • square v. see paragraph 2, line one.
  • I raised my head, squared my shoulders, and set out in the direction of my dorm.
  • Question: In what circumstances will one square his/her shoulders?
  • a square refusal
  • 不拐弯抹角
  • Her hat was set squarely on her head
  • 帽子戴得很周正
  • Look sb. squarely in the eye.
  • 目光直逼对方
  • Be there or be square!
  • Clutch: to hold or grasp tightly;
  • to try to grasp or seize.
  • Eg: The frightened woman ~ed her bags to her breast.
  • He ~ed at the rope we had thrown to him but could not reach it.

Clutch bags

Reserve: self-restraint in expression; the habit of not showing one’s feelings or thoughts.

  • Reserve: self-restraint in expression; the habit of not showing one’s feelings or thoughts.
  • Eg: Being a man of ~, Mr. York was never popular with his colleagues.
  • Judy had tried every means to break through the ~ of her stepson.
  • The Federal Reserve
  • Reserved: a.
  • The English have a reputation for being ~.
  • Reservation n.
  • I support this proposal without reservation.
  • I only hoped his attention was drawn to my airs of assurance rather than to my shaking knees.
  • I did hope that what he noticed was my apparent/pretended confidence but not my knees which were shaking because of excitement.
  • Airs of assurance: apparent confidence.
  • Airs: n: An affected, often haughty pose 神态,样子
  • E.g. He has an air of importance.
  • Put on airs
  • whereabouts下落, 所在之处
    • The missing child’s whereabouts is/are still unknown.
    • Whereabouts do you live?
    • It’s said the whereabouts of the missing documents was found.
  • I was in the foreground (as advised), but out of the professor’s direct line of vision. (L4-5, para.3)
  • I took a seat in the first row and to the side, but out of the professor’s direct field of vision.
  • Translate the sentence into Chinese:
  • (按照新手手册的建议)我坐在前排靠边,但又不在老师的眼皮子底下。

Para. 5 –Paraphrase

  • I settled into my chair and tried to assume the scientific pose of …
    • I sat back in my chair and tried to take on the scientific look of a student majoring in biology. I bent my body forward, prepared my arms to work hard at taking notes, and at the same time cursed my bad luck secretly.
    • Present participle: bending…,tensing…, and cursing…

Tip off: to give an advanced warning or hint to

  • Tip off: to give an advanced warning or hint to
  • Eg: The police was tipped off about the robbery.
  • Don‘t look suspicious! That will tip off the police!
  • 别显得那么紧张,那样会让警察注意你的。
  • Acting on a tip off, the police arrested the drug smugglers.

Pa 6-7

slipping

  • How did the students react when she slipped and fell down? And how did the author feel about it?
  • They cheered and clapped. And she felt embarrassed and humiliated.

Flail: to wave or swing about wildly

  • Flail: to wave or swing about wildly
  • Eg: I ~ed her arms to get here attention.
  • The baby ‘s feet ~ed under the quilt.
  • flail one's arms/ hands above one's head
  • Rear end: buttocks

maneuver

  • a skilful or careful movement that you make, for example in order to avoid something or go through a narrow space
  • A rapid maneuver by the driver prevented an accident.
  • room for manoeuvre/freedom of manoeuvre
  • the possibility of changing your plans or decisions in order to achieve what you want

Pa 8-9

  • Why did she dine on junk food for the next three days?
  • She thought she had become the laughing-stock on campus. She couldn’t stand by being laughed at by all the students when she turned up in the cafeteria.
  • What happened in the cafeteria when she went there on the fourth day?
  • The upper class football player , the very person she had admired, has the same experience as she did. But instead of escaping in humiliation, the football player calmly and good-humoredly took all this and went on with his meal.
  • What was the footballer’s response to the students’ cheers and claps when he fell on the cafeteria floor? And why?
  • He did not take the accident seriously. On the contrary, he took it light-hearted and just laughed it off. It shows that accidents like that are quite common on campus and one should learn to take them easy.

Junk food

  • Are you fond of junk food?
  • Do you enjoy eating hamburgers, hot dogs, French fries and chips? Are you fond of soft drinks, candy and ice cream? If your answers are “Yes”, you’d better take care. Most of them are junk food!
  • assortment: a group of similar things that are of different size or colors or have different qualities
  • a wide assortment of gifts to choose from
  • wearing an odd assortment of clothes
  • Sb.’s heart goes out to somebody: used to say that someone feels a lot of sympathy towards another person
  • His heart went out to Mrs. Bradshaw and her fatherless child.

Slink: to go or move in a quiet, stealthy way; to move as if one feels guilty or ashamed, or does not want to be seen.

  • Slink: to go or move in a quiet, stealthy way; to move as if one feels guilty or ashamed, or does not want to be seen.
  • Eg: She tried to ~ out of the office so that nobody would see her.
  • The cat slunk (sneaked)through the grass toward its prey.

Part 3

  • What was the key lesson Evelyn Herald learned during her first few weeks in college?
  • Since people grow by trial and error, one should relax and be oneself.

What according to Evelyn, is one of the major differences between college and high school lives?

  • What according to Evelyn, is one of the major differences between college and high school lives?
  • One of the major differences between college and high school lives is that in high school one strives for popularity and has to avoid at any cost making himself/herself a laughing stock among his/her peers. When a person is in college, he /she should be his/her own person and do his/her own thing and avoid taking other’s opinion too much to heart.

How should a person take his/her college life according to Evelyn? Do you agree?

  • How should a person take his/her college life according to Evelyn? Do you agree?
  • A person, according to Evelyn, should take his/her college life for an experiment. He/ she should not be afraid of making mistakes because it is only through trial and error that one can find his/her real self and finding his/her real self is the ultimate purpose of college education. College allows one to make massive mistakes.

Para. 10 -Paraphrase

  • What I had interpreted as a malicious attempt…
    • I had understood it as an ill-intention to make fun of an innocent freshman and make him/her feel uneasy, but it turned out to be only an occasion for fun in college.
    • Sentence structure: a subject clause

Malicious: having the nature or wish to hurt others a ~ remark

  • Malicious: having the nature or wish to hurt others a ~ remark
  • He apologized her for his malicious remark.
  • malicious gossip
  • malice: a desire to harm or see others suffer; extreme ill will or spite
  • Eg: He did it through malice.
  • I am quite certain that his wife bears malice to /towards/against me.
  • running with the crowd was no longer a law of survival :随波逐流
  • going with the tide of the majority was no longer crucial to your success in college

This was my big chance to do my own thing, be my own woman—if I could get past my preoccupation with doing everything perfectly.

  • This was my big chance to do my own thing, be my own woman—if I could get past my preoccupation with doing everything perfectly.
  • As long as I could overcome my attempt to be perfect in everything, I would well be able to do what I wanted to.
  • Preoccupation: n. something that takes up one’s attention
  • E.g.: Environmental problem is their preoccupation.

Once I recognized that I had no one’s expectation to live up to but my own, I relaxed.

  • Once I recognized that I had no one’s expectation to live up to but my own, I relaxed.
  • Live up to one’s expectation: To live or act in accordance with; to prove equal to;
  • 决不辜负粉丝的期望
  • Never fail to live up to the expectations of the fans.

Shackle: a metal fastening, usually one of a pair, for encircling and confining the ankle or wrist of a prisoner of captive; a restraint or check to action or progress, often used in the plural forms

  • Shackle: a metal fastening, usually one of a pair, for encircling and confining the ankle or wrist of a prisoner of captive; a restraint or check to action or progress, often used in the plural forms
  • Eg: The policeman placed ~s on the suspect’s hands.
  • It is hard to break through the ~s of habit.

Here it means to find out through trials what I really like by nature, so as to do away with hypocrisy and affectation. (cf. act my way in prg. 13.)

  • Here it means to find out through trials what I really like by nature, so as to do away with hypocrisy and affectation. (cf. act my way in prg. 13.)
  • have something on one's conscience, to feel guilty about something, as an act that one considers wrong:
  • She behaves as if she had something on her conscience.
  • Have a clear conscience
  • 问心无愧:
  • Search one’s conscience:
  • 扪心自问,自我反省
  • How do you understand “to test my conscience”?

What does “I’m even being forgiven for a few” imply?

  • What does “I’m even being forgiven for a few” imply?
  • I’m still not sophisticated or mature enough to stay clear of clumsy mistakes. This reinforces the idea that even an elder grownup cannot be flawless, let alone an undergraduate. Therefore there’s no need to regret too much for one’s mistakes.
  • To err is man.
  • To forgive, divine.

Structural analysis

  • Part 1: (para1) Introduction
  • about the author’s
  • a. feeling
  • First-grading
  • b. impression on campus
  • Everyone on campus was watching me.
  • c. plan for college life
  • Keep my ears open and my mouth shut.
  • Part 2: (para2-9) main body
  • (recalling bitter incidents)
  • Three “bitter” incidents
  • A. sitting in the wrong classroom
  • B. falling down on the cafeteria floor
  • C. witnessing the football player falling down…
  • Part 3: (para 10-14) conclusion
  • Key lesson learned:
  • One should take his/her college life as a wonderful experiment and should not be afraid of making mistakes. Only through experiment and mistakes can one find his/her real self and finding one’s real self is the ultimate purpose of college education.

Text B A University Stands &shines

  • About the author
  • Questions on the text
  • Some sentences

John Masefield (1878—1967)

  • Poet (poet of Laureates ), novelist, playwright and critic
  • The poet of the Sea, for Salt-Water Ballads containing “Sea Fever” and “Cargoes,” and Ballads.
  • Everlasting Mercy, The Widow in the Bye Street , etc., he won his greatest fame.

Questions

  • What are the main points of the selection?
  • What does humanist mean?
  • The humanist is the man who believe in human intelligence and reason rather than depending on a god or religion. Some of the major marks are stress on intellectual side, emphasizing the dignity of human beings and sufficient attention being given to the importance of the present life and the improving one’s ability and pursuit of the beauty of life.

Sentences

  • They give to the young in their impressionable years, the bond of a lofty purpose shared, of a great corporate life whose links will not be loosed until they die.
  • Structure
  • Bond: n. link
  • Corporate: a. united or combined into a body. collective

In conferring it upon us you declare, or let it be presumed, that we are qualified to teach in those ways of life which we have followed.

  • In conferring it upon us you declare, or let it be presumed, that we are qualified to teach in those ways of life which we have followed.
  • Confer: To bestow (an honor, for example) ;
  • Presume: To take for granted as being true in the absence of proof to the contrary.

Translation exercises

  • 听到他屡遭失败的消息,我感到很难过。(distress)
  • It distressed me a great deal to hear the news that he had suffered repeated failures.
  • 他虽然失去了老板的欢心,但仍然装出一副高兴的样子。(assume)
  • He assumed an air of cheerfulness, even though he lost favor with his boss.
  • 格利佛经历了冒险奇遇,见到了一群光怪陆离的人物。(assortment)
  • Gulliver met with extraordinary adventures and saw a strange assortment of people.
  • 如果你再犯同样的错误,他会对你非常生气的。(furious)
  • He will be furious with you if you repeat the same mistake.
  • 我们被他坦率的观点、幽默的语言和亲切的态度所深深地吸引。(draw)
  • We were all greatly drawn by his frank views, humorous words and genial manner.
  • 等到雷鸣般的掌声平息下去,那位诺贝尔获得者开始演讲。(die down)
  • After the thunderous applause died down, the Nobel Prize winner began his speech.

Writing practice (2)

  • Write a composition of about 200 words on the following topic:
  • My First Year at College
  • .

Writing practice (2)

  • MY FIRST YEAR AT COLLEGE
  • Sample writing :
  • My first year at college opened a new chapter in my life. It was a year of great changes. At the beginning I found it difficult to adapt to things which were strange to me. From the very first day, I had to take care of my self. I must not leave my things about as I had done at home. Fortunately, soon I found a place for everything and a time for every task. I wrote to tell my parents that they did not have to worry themselves to death.

Classes were conducted quite differently from those at high school. There were plenty of discussions. The lectures were designed mainly to usher us to new worlds of knowledge. I worked very hard after class so as to catch up with reading and writing assignments. Later as I learned to plan my time, I did even better.

  • Classes were conducted quite differently from those at high school. There were plenty of discussions. The lectures were designed mainly to usher us to new worlds of knowledge. I worked very hard after class so as to catch up with reading and writing assignments. Later as I learned to plan my time, I did even better.
  • I think my most important attainment during the first year was that I discovered new worlds of wonders and developed a passion for learning, learning for a rich, useful life both for me and for society.

Oral activities

  • Organize yourselves into groups of five or six and discuss the following issue.
  • Daisy is a sophomore who does not feel happy with her college life. She is not very interested in her subjects and does not work hard. She stays idle most of her spare time and shuts herself in her dorm. She is extremely shy and never asserts herself in public. In a word, she feels disoriented in college. Work in groups, Suppose you are her friends, try to give her some help and help her to find herself in college.

Oral activities

  • Organize yourselves into groups of five or six and discuss the following issue
  • What should a college student do in China? Should he/she do as Evelyn suggests, that is, allow him/herself to make mistakes in college? Compare college life in America and China.

Assignment : students are required to write and get ready for a speech based on the theme confronting myself

  • Everybody may meet with difficulties or failures of one kind or another in his lifetime. Describe one of these situations you were in and how you confront yourself and dealt with it.

Discussion Qs:

    • Discussion Qs:
    • Freshman Manual
    • any advice regarding keeping or dropping relationships as a freshman, difficulty of classes, eating habits, homesickness, dorm issues, campus societies, etc.


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