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中口教程Unit 3 Passage B


The first permanent shelters were probably built twenty to forty thousand years ago by fish eating people who lived in one place as long as the fish supply lasted.  Fish-eaters could stay in one place for several years. However, once man learned to farm, he could live longer in one place. Thus, he was able to build a permanent home. Once again, he built his home with the materials he found at hand. In Egypt, for example, wood was scarce, so most houses were built of bricks made of dried mud, with a roof supported by palm tree minks.

When the Norsemen came from Scandinavia to northern Europe, they found many forests, so they built homes with a framework of heavy tree thinks and they filled the space between the trunks with clay. The Eskimos, on the other hand, lived in a land where there was little or no wood. They learned to adapt their homes perfectly to their surroundings. In the winter time, when everything was covered with snow and ice, the Eskimos built their homes with blocks of ice. When the warm weather came and melted the ice, the Eskimos lived in a tent made of animal skins.

The weather is man's worst natural enemy.  He has to protect himself from extremes of heat and cold and from storms, wind and rain.

Where the weather is hot and dry, the house is generally made of clay brick.  The windows are small and high up, so that the heat stays outside. There is often a flat roof, where people can find a cool place to sleep. In hot, humid areas, on the other hand, people need to be protected from the rain, as well as the heat.  In such places, houses are built with wide, overhanging roofs, balconies or verandas.

Where there are torrential rains, houses are either built on piles to keep them off the ground, or they have steep thatched roofs to drain off the rain. People living in the Congo River region have found that steep, heavily-thatched roofs drain off the jungle rains more quickly. Other people in Africa have found that a roof of broad leaves sheds rain quickly.

In Borneo, houses are built on high posts to protect people from dampness. And there are tribes in Malaya who build their homes in the forked branches of trees, and climb up to their houses on bamboo ladders.

In northern countries, people build houses to protect themselves from cold and snow.  Their houses are built of sturdy materials, and the roofs are steep, so that the snow will slide off. There are also overhanging eaves to keep the snow from piling up next to the house. And, in northern Siberia, where snowfall is extremely heavy, the roofs even have a funnel-shaped platform. to protect the chimneys from drifting snow.

Protection from danger has also influenced the type of house man builds.  When enemies threatened him, man made his house as inaccessible as possible.  The tree-dwellers of the Philippines protect themselves by living high above the ground.  When danger threatens, they remove the ladders leading to their homes. The cliff dwellers of the American Southwest built their homes high up on the sides of cliffs, where access was very difficult.

Nomad tribes must move from place to place, taking care of flocks of sheep that are always in need of fresh grass. Their houses must be simple and easy to transport. The nomads of central Asia have developed a house made of a framework of poles covered with felt. The house is round because the framework is curved. The poles are fastened together at the top with a wooden ring, and there is a hole at the top to let the smoke out.




点评:第一篇再次考到了教程上的篇章。这次考到的是Unit3 Passage B 这样的话,过去2年内已经考过的教程篇章有Unit Two (The Pleasures of Eating), Unit Three (A Roof over our heads), Unit Five (Artificial Waterways), Unit Seven (The Whale)。在新版改版之前,也请各位考生注意剩余十二个单元的Passage B






Q6-10: Time


Emma Way did not become a figure of contempt for British cyclists because she nudged Toby Hockley off his bicycle and into a hedge as she drove past him on a country lane on May 19. No, she achieved that infamy by confessing to her crime online. "Definitely knocked a cyclist off his bike earlier," Way, 22, tweeted after the collision that left Hockley, 29, with a bruised body and the status of a martyr for Britain's cyclists. "I have right of way he doesn't even pay road tax!" She ended with a hashtag popular with tweeting British motorists: #bloodycyclists.

It was the tweet heard around the roads of Britain, and it resulted in Way's being convicted in November of driving offenses, losing her job as a trainee accountant and acknowledging in court that the comment rated "11 out of 10" on the stupidity scale. In an interview on national television after her conviction, she noted that since the story broke, she had been cyberbullied and had received "malicious communications." What she did not say was that she was sorry for knocking Hockley, a chef, off his bike. "I was quite angry at the mannerism of the cyclist on the road," she said. "My point of view is that he was on my side of the road that's not the way you drive."

Way to stoke the fire, Ms. Way. By continuing to pin the blame for the incident on the cyclist, the young driver fell further into an already considerable chasm that divides modern Britain. The BBC last year featured an hour-long documentary with lots of footage of raging cyclists and cab drivers whose title explained the situation succinctly: War on Britain's Roads.

It wasn't entirely an exaggeration: people are dying in this conflict between cyclists and drivers. London in November seemed like a particularly dangerous place for the two-wheeled combatants. Six cyclists were killed in less than two weeks, a mounting toll chronicled in increasingly mournful headlines. Six in a few days is a lot; the total killed this year in Britain's capital is 14. The deaths sparked a bout of public recrimination. When London's Mayor Boris Johnson, himself a cyclist, appeared less than sympathetic after the fifth death he told a radio host that some of the dead cyclists "have taken decisions that really did put their lives in danger" he was transformed from cycling champion to heartless pro-car politician and joined Way as a target of the particularly passionate fury that cyclists can muster.

The anger has become political in Britain, as it has in many countries whose governments encourage citizens to cycle rather than drive to work, to lessen the impact on the environment and on traffic. Johnson has arguably done more than any previous politician for London cyclists, establishing a $1.6 billion fund to make cycling safer in the city and appointing London's first cycling commissioner. Even though the number of cyclist deaths in London has been dropping steadily in the past two decades, the demand from cyclists for the city to adapt grows as the number of bikes on the road grows. As does the particularly passionate fury that cyclists can muster.

I know the emotions of the London cyclist: I'm a cyclist myself. Depending on the weather or how lucky I'm feeling, I'll opt for my bike rather than the Underground to travel the 13 km to TIME's office in London. I love it. I meander through Hyde Park, past Buckingham Palace, through Trafalgar Square and across the curves of the Thames, and I feel blessed by the beauty of this city and glad to be alive. At times, by the end of it, I feel lucky to be alive.

Because cycling is very risky no matter the number of bike lanes or level of traffic policing. When I'm cycling, huge lumps of metal, driven by people protected by seat belts and cocooned by steel, race past me at great speed, and my default assumption is that, while none of them want to kill me, every one of them could.

Whether or not Johnson is right that some of the cyclists who died recently were breaking the law, all of us make a very personal decision about risking our lives by getting on our bikes. And we should know that when we ignore red lights to get ahead of the traffic, or get too close to trucks or buses because we feel it's our right to be there, then we are making a mistake even dumber than Emma Way's tweet. In the war of the cyclist vs. the driver, the driver will nearly always come out alive. Less so the cyclist.










Q11-15: Scientific American


Educators have known for 30 years that students perform. better when given one-on-one tutoring and mastery learningworking on a subject until it is mastered, not just until a test is scheduled. Success also requires motivation, whether from an inner drive or from parents, mentors or peers.

Will the rise of massive open online courses (MOOCs) quash these success factors? Not at all. In fact, digital tools offer our best path to cost-effective, personalized learning.

I know because I have taught both ways. For years Sebastian Thrun and I have given artificial-intelligence courses at Stanford University and other schools; we lectured, assigned homework and gave everyone the same exam at the same time. Each semester just 5 to 10 percent of students regularly engaged in deep discussions in class or office hours; the rest were more passive. We felt there had to be a better way.

So, in the fall of 2011, we tried something new. In addition to our traditional classroom, we created a free online course open to anyone. On our first try, we attracted a city's worth of participantsabout 100,000 engaged with the course, and 23,000 finished.

Inspired by Nobel laureate Herbert Simon's comment that learning results from what the student does and thinks and only from what the student does and thinks, we created a course centered on the students doing things and getting frequent feedback. Our “lectures” were short (two- to six-minute) videos designed to prime the attendees for doing the next exercise. Some problems required the application of mathematical techniques described in the videos. Others were open-ended questions that gave students a chance to think on their own and then to hash out ideas in online discussion forums.

Our scheme to help make learning happen actively, rather than passively, created many benefits akin to tutoringand helped to increase motivation. First, as shown in a 2013 study by Karl K. Szpunar, Novall Y. Khan and Daniel L. Schacter in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, frequent interactions keep attention from wandering. Second, as William B. Wood and Kimberly D. Tanner describe in a 2012 Life Sciences Education paper, learning is enhanced when students work to construct their own explanations, rather than passively listening to the teacher's. That is why a properly designed automated intelligent tutoring system can foster learning outcomes as well as human instructors can, as Kurt van Lehn found in a 2011 meta-analysis in Educational Psychologist.

A final key advantage was the rapid improvement of the course itself. We analyzed the junctures where our thousands of students succeeded or failed and found where our course needed fine-tuning. Better still, we could capture this information on an hour-by-hour basis. For our class, human teachers analyzed the data, but an artificial-intelligence system could perform. this function and then make recommendations for what a pupil could try next to improveas online shopping sites today make automated recommendations for what book or movie you might enjoy.

Online learning is a tool, just as the textbook is a tool. The way the teacher and the student use the tool is what really counts.







Q16-20: The New York Times


Most people have seen bullies in action, making life miserable for others. Their targets often escape the intimidation relatively unharmed, but sometimes it is too much to bear. That can be true whether the victim is a 12-year-old girl or a 136-kilogram American football player.

A member of the Miami Dolphins left the National Football League team recently because he was repeatedly insulted and threatened by a teammate, Richie Incognito. Many fans were disgusted by details of Mr. Incognito's expletive-filled voice mail and text messages, while others defended his behavior. as a natural part of a rough-and-tumble sport.

Some people are astonished that Jonathan Martin, who is 1.95 meters tall, "could actually be emotionally damaged by taunts from a teammate," the columnist Timothy Egan wrote recently in The Times. "Can you possibly hurt a hulk with words?"

Based on his own experience playing football in high school, Mr. Egan argues that you can. He was smaller than the other guys and had a big, unruly head of hair that made him stand out. His teammates taunted him. "Did it hurt? Yes it did," he wrote. "I knew very well what it felt like to give so much to a game and have people who were part of it, his teammates, hurt him."

Bullies aren't all men. The Times reported recently that scientists had made big strides in understanding aggression by young women.

"The existence of female competition may seem obvious to anyone who has been in a high school cafeteria or singles bar," John Tierney wrote, "but analyzing it has been difficult because it tends to be more subtle and indirect (and a lot less violent) than the male variety."

Researchers found that women were more likely to make mean comments about other women if they saw them as competition for male attention. In an experiment, a group of female college students reacted negatively when a woman wearing a low-cut blouse and a short skirt entered the room, while they barely noticed the same woman dressed in a T-shirt and jeans.

But in perhaps one difference between the sexes, instead of confronting the woman directly, the others made fun of her once she left the room.

"Women are indeed very capable of aggressing against others, especially women they perceive as rivals," said Dr. Tracy Vaillancourt, a psychologist at the University of Ottawa.

For those on the receiving end who are young or otherwise vulnerable, the damage can be tragic. In September, a 12-year-old girl in Florida named Rebecca Ann Sedwick killed herself after other girls bullied her online. She went to an abandoned cement plant, climbed to a platform. and jumped.

"Rebecca became one of the youngest members of a growing list of children and teenagers apparently driven to suicide, at least in part, after being maligned, threatened and taunted online," The Times reported. And teenagers aren't just using Facebook or Instagram to pick on one another. New applications appear constantly, making it difficult for parents to keep tabs on their children's activity. Rebecca's mother, Tricia Norman, didn't know her daughter was receiving messages that said: "You're ugly" and"Can u die please?"

"You hear about this all the time," Ms. Norman said of cyberbullying. "I never, ever thought it would happen to me or my daughter."










Q20-25: New York Times


The two economists call their paper "Mental Retirement," and their findings from the United States and 12 European countries suggest that the earlier people retire, the more quickly their memories decline.

“It's incredibly interesting and exciting,” said Laura Carstensen, director of the Center on Longevity at Stanford University in California. “It suggests work actually provides an important component of the environment that keeps people functioning optimally.”

Japan and South Korea have begun administering a survey on memory. China, India and several countries in Latin America are also planning surveys.

While not everyone is convinced, a number of leading researchers say the “Mental Retirement” study is, at least, a tantalizing bit of evidence for a hypothesis that is widely believed but difficult to demonstrate.

Researchers repeatedly find that retired people tend to do less well on cognitive tests than people who are still working. But, they note, that could be because people whose memories and thinking skills are declining may be more likely to retire than people whose cognitive skills remain sharp.

And research has failed to support the premise that mastering activities like memory exercises, crossword puzzles and Sudoku improve overall functioning.

"If you do crossword puzzles, you get better at crossword puzzles," said Lisa Berkman, director of the Center for Population and Development Studies at Harvard University. "But you don't get better at cognitive behavior. in life."

The study was possible, explains one of its authors, Robert Willis, a professor of economics at the University of Michigan, because the National Institute on Aging began a large study in the United States nearly 20 years ago. Called the Health and Retirement Study, it surveys more than 22,000 Americans over age 50 every two years, and administers memory tests.

That led European countries to start their own surveys, using similar questions so the data would be comparable.

The test looks at how well people can recall a list of 10 nouns immediately and 10 minutes after they heard them. People in the United States did best, scoring an average of 11 out of a perfect 20. Those in Denmark and England were close behind, with scores just above 10, followed by France (8), Italy (7) and Spain (6).

The researchers noticed that there are large differences in the ages at which people retire.

In the United States, England and Denmark, where people retire later, 65 to 70 percent of men were still working when they were in their early 60s. In France and Italy, the figure is 10 to 20 percent, and in Spain it is 38 percent.

Economic incentives produce the large differences in retirement age. Countries with earlier retirement ages have tax policies, pension, disability and other measures that encourage people to leave the work force at younger ages.

The researchers found that the longer people keep working, the better they do on the tests when they are in their early 60s.

“There is evidence that social skills and personality skills --- getting up in the morning, dealing with people, knowing the value of being prompt and trustworthy --- are also important,” Dr. Willis said. "They go hand in hand with the work environment."







Q26-30: 剑桥商务英语高级



The ability to negotiate successfully, to reach agreements with other people or parties, is a key skill in any business. This negotiation could be with a buyer or seller and it almost always involves an element of compromise. But, when entering negotiations, you should always keep in mind that it is almost impossible to negotiate and make agreements successfully if you think you can't afford to "lose" or walk away from what is on offer. This will result in your avoiding asking for anything more than what you think the other side will give without a dispute. You become a passive observer, with the other side dictating the terms.

 In most negotiations one side has more to offer than the other and proper planning can help minimize the effects of this imbalance. Decide on set limits for what you can offer before negotiations begin. There are always advantages you can offer the other side, and you clearly have benefits they want or need or they would not be negotiating with you. In fact, the buyer or seller often wants you more than you think, so it is to your advantage to try and see things from their point of view. The better you know their real needs or wantsnot just the ones they have told youthe more successful you will be, and the less likely you are to fall into the trap of giving them more than you really need to.

 But it is also true that a concession they really need or will value from you won't cost you as much as it benefits them, and yet may still leave you with everything you want. If you know the other side must reach agreement on a deal by a certain date for financial reasons, your willingness to comply with that date could be worth a great deal of money to them, without costing you much, if anything at all. It is up to you to find out what the other side really needs. Untrained negotiators often allow their feelings to become too involved and they may take each rejection of a proposal as personal rejection. So they become angry with the other person, or blame them for failing to reach an agreement. While it is important to be yourself and, on occasion, not be afraid to express how you honestly feel, it is important to judge carefully when to do this. It is particularly important to maintain a polite and friendly personal relationship when you are facing a difficult negotiation, but keeping negative personal feelings out of negotiation doesn't mean hiding your personality.

 Think carefully about your negotiation schedule. Take breaks, particularly during times when you cannot agree over a particular point. But if you have to continue the negotiation on another day, make it soon, and keep the momentum of the negotiations. As long as you are still talking and meeting, you build rapport with the other party; learn more about what they need and ensure that your company is the one most likely to make the deal. This may require both patience and perseverancebut patience pays!

 To "win" a negotiation then, means that neither side should feel that they have "lost". You should know what you can offer the other side and know exactly what they want. If you have done everything you can and the deal remains outside the limits you have defined for yourself beforehand, then walk away from it. Either way, you're a winner!




点评:近年来中口阅读出题另一个趋势,会有一篇来自于剑桥商务英语的文章。放在最后一篇,又是同学不熟悉的商务问题,理解的时候还需要注意力集中。文章主要内容是有关于如何谈判(negotiation) --- 知道自己的底线,知道什么时候推出,以及抓住对方真正需求。文章虽然字数较多,但是段落较少,每段内容可以通过段首主题句抓住,剩下细节部分就要通过习题来调整自己阅读速度。








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  • TAG: 1403 阅读 中口

    引用 删除 Guest   /   2014-03-24 06:37:55
    引用 删除 Guest   /   2014-03-17 20:34:47
    引用 删除 Guest   /   2014-03-16 22:31:16




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    英文名SHOW ,担任中高级口译项目部副主任,担任过口译考试考官。擅长托福,口译类课程的教授。参与编写中级口译阅读,翻译讲义。曾获得卡西欧杯英语翻译大赛一等奖,拥有高口和专八证书,多次担任过ATP1000上海大师赛和F1口译工作。毕业于上海对外经贸大学英语翻译专业,热爱语言学习和语言教学,并对英语和汉语有较深研究。课上注重调动学生学习英语的积极性,培养学生学习英语的兴趣,从而让学生学会如何自己探寻语言的奥秘。Motto: A little learning is dangerous.


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