Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Reading Log Entry #3


Alice in April 


Phyllis Reynolds Naylor

Alice in April. Phyllis Reynolds Naylor. Atheneum Books for Young Readers, c1993. 164 pages.


Alice has a set of friends and there's this girl who's named Denise Whitlock,Alice’s former bully, is being abused by her mother and winds up committing suicide. I did not expect that it will happen in the last part because the character of Denise in the story is so mysterious that's why what she did was so unpredictable. I know it was hard for Alice to believe what had happen and felt guilty because she was the last person whom Denise talked to before she died. she was not aware that those things that Denise gave to her serves as a sign of goodbye. And for sure, if she only knew what Denise is planning, maybe Alice had stopped her and talk about Denise's problem instead if committing suicide.

2.Connect-  Now that i'm in the legal age, I can now be called the woman of the house just like Alice. I'm the one who is in charge with the household chores because it is my responsibility as the eldest child in the family. I can somehow relate to Alice because sometimes I can feel that being the woman of the house is stressful because I need to think about of everything. Aside from my school works, I need to watch after my brothers: check if they already did their home works and ask if they have already eaten their meals and things like that.. So, to handle these situations, i am asking help from my parents and just taking things easy.

3.Question- I wonder if Alice could do the duty of being the woman of the house well? I also wonder if Patrick have a special feelings for Alice?

4.Predict- I think Ms.Summers and Alice's father will get married in the future. And Alice will no longer mind what will the boys say about her.

Part 2:

#10. Describe your favorite part. Make a prediction about what will happen next.

 The last part was my favorite because it was hanging and it made me excited to read the next series. Maybe in the next part, Alice, her friends, and Patrick will become more mature and will try to do more exciting things together. For sure Alice's father and Ms. Summers will get married and Alice would be happy if that will happen. 
In the next part, more excitement, more of Alice experiences and more lessons that can be learned .

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Comics and Jokes Are Serious Teaching Tools for Linguists

Spook [the prisoner]: Have you ever eaten squid fried?
Turnkey [the guard]: Yes.
Spook: How was it?
Turnkey: Better than when I was sober.
The study of linguistics is not a laughing matter -- unless you happen to have Stan Dubinsky as your professor. The University of South Carolina linguist has been sharing jokes and puns and cartoons with students for more than 20 years as a way of helping them understand complex concepts about the science of language.
Using cartoons like the one above, which features the ambiguous use of the word "fried" (referring either to Turnkey's having been drunk or to a way of cooking squid), Dubinsky is able to clearly explain how the structure of a sentence can alter its meaning. Seeing students' amusement and satisfaction when they get the joke and the concept has kept him clipping cartoons for decades.
Dubinsky is particularly enamored of humor that involves play on words, sounds or grammar. Over the course of years teaching undergraduate linguistics he came to realize that the comic strips and panels he enjoyed so much were a wonderful teaching tool for a subject that he says can "sometimes rival physics or chemistry in detail and difficulty."
"Cartoons and jokes are very useful as a teaching tool," Dubinsky said. "Students love it when you present them with something amusing that also illustrates a main point in the lecture. In this respect, language-based humor turns out to be a great way to illustrate difficult-to-grasp linguistic concepts."
Once he realized that cartoons offered such linguistic gems, Dubinsky began perusing newspaper cartoon sections.
"I became an obsessive cartoon reader," said Dubinsky. "I perused the cartoon section of The State newspaper every day on the chance that there might be a cartoon I could use. Sometimes I would find two cartoons in a one day or sometimes not find one cartoon in two weeks. Gradually, though, my cartoon collection became enormous, and part of my regular teaching preparation was picking out the comic strips that would work in class."
Dubinsky said some of his best finds came from the comic strips Shoe, Dilbert, Mother Goose and Grimm, B.C. and, of course, The Wizard of Id.
Cambridge Press thought Dubinsky's approach to explaining the workings of language through humor was an idea worth sharing. As a result, linguistic students and lovers of language everywhere can benefit from Dubinsky's favorite cartoons and his humor-inspired teaching techniques, without taking his class.
With research assistance from Hannah Peace, a USC Honors College alumna, Dubinsky and USC rhetoric professor Christopher Holcombe, co-wrote the book, "Understanding Language through Humor," which was released by Cambridge late last fall.
Much like Dubinsky's use of cartoons to supplement his lectures, the book provides students with entertaining examples in very plain language to supplement linguistic textbooks. Each chapter begins with an illustrated cartoon and features more than a dozen jokes, many from comic strips. They also use carefully selected bits of humor to explain a particular aspect of linguistics, such that a reader can come out with a fairly comprehensive understanding of the field.