Saturday, October 17, 2015

Horses, Decay, Romantics

I like horses in artwork.   

_____(Q) For example, it takes you from a place of turmoil and conflict to your own hearth.  

_____(R) So, symbolically, the horse often represents what gets you from one (rotten) place to another (better) place.   

_____(S) One reason is that, to me, the horse is a symbol of transition. 

_____(T) Or, it leads you into and out of battle; it helps you escape, engage in some adventure or find new ways.  

_____(U) By transition, I mean transition within our inner reality as well as transition in our external reality. 

  Copyright – Daniel Gauss

‘Decay’ might be a somewhat misleading term as it is used in regard to subatomic particles.  

_____(Q) This then gives you a more stable Nitrogen atom (the difference between types of atoms depends on the number of protons in the nucleus – gain a proton and you become something else). 

_____(R) Atoms experience this type of change due to their ‘instability’ and become more ‘stable’ afterwards.   

_____(S) For instance, C14 has 6 protons and 8 neutrons and this is an unstable state for Carbon.  

_____(T) So, poof, a neutron spontaneously can change to a proton and now you get 7 neutrons and 7 protons.  

_____(U) If we are talking about beta decay, for instance, this simply describes a process in which an atom with an overabundance of neutrons experiences the spontaneous change of a neutron into a proton, creating another element completely while also discharging a fast moving electron (a beta particle). 

 Copyright – Daniel Gauss

The artists of the Romantic Movement could see science coming, and it wasn’t pretty.  

_____(Q) There was the outer world (stuff to be perceived, measured and used) and the inner world (perception, thought and emotional responses).   

_____(R) Science seemed to bring an ideology along with it (a technological justification of the worst forms of capitalism) and, schematically, it divided the world into two.  

_____(S) The Romantics, however, believed the mind and body to be a part of nature and connected to nature.  

_____(T) Science, therefore, meant our minds were separate from nature and were to be used to control nature, as if we were secular wizards.  

_____(U) Friedrich Schelling went so far as to say that nature was visible spirit and spirit was invisible nature.

Copyright – Daniel Gauss

Answers are below:

Horses ----à 4,3,1,5,2     Q=4, R=3, S=1, T=5, U=2

Decay --à 5,2,3,4,1

Romantics -à 2,1,4,3,5

Monday, October 5, 2015

Minhwa, The Potato Famine

Minhwa is a traditional Korean art form. 

_____(Q) These are insights that would never have been publicly promulgated through the media of the dominant culture. 

_____(R) Minhwa is basically, therefore, the raw, insightful and passionate ‘real’ people (magpies)attacking the established and respected hacks (tigers) in power who control things through connections, quid pro quo arrangements and whatever other forms of shadiness they can think of to try to seem relevant and important. 

_____ (S) Minhwa has represented the experiences and desires of the common people, revealing insights only the people could know about life and society. 

_____ (T) Therefore the tigers aren’t really tigers in Minhwa, they are buffoons just as the aristocracy and power-brokers were, or have been, overwhelmingly, buffoons. 

_____(U) Because it is from the relatively powerless common people, there is often sarcasm and humor in Minhwa, and perhaps some secret social symbolism and criticism, as with magpies mocking vicious and powerful tigers who suddenly look stupid and ridiculous.

copyright: Daniel Gauss  2015

While over one million people starved to death in Ireland from 1845 – 1850, boatloads of grain regularly arrived from Ireland, through the port of Liverpool, to feed the citizens of England.  

_____ (Q) The Irish people had been colonized by the English and most Irish worked for various wealthy (mostly English) landlords.  

_____ (R) Thus, the tenant farmers who were dependent on the potato starved while the wealthy landowners reaped tremendous profits from the Irish grain they exported.  

_____ (S) These landlords never even considered stopping the transport of food from Ireland to England so that the Irish themselves might be saved while the potato crop was decimated by a fungus.  

_____ (T) Yet, a famine is when there is no food – there was an overabundance of food…the Irish just weren’t allowed to eat it. 

_____ (U) This was free market capitalism at its most transparently inhumane, but it has come down to us through history whitewashed as the potato ‘famine’.

Copyright: Daniel Gauss 2015

Answers are below:

Minhwa: 2,4,1,5,3 ----> Q=2, R=4, S=1, T=5, U=3
Potato Famine: 1,3,2,5,4

Monday, July 13, 2015

2 more scrambled paragraphs: Grief, Summer of Love,

Notice:  All of the scrambled paragraphs on this blog are a free, non-commercial resource purely for educational purposes. By using the site you agree not to reproduce this material on another site.

{{By the way, if anyone is interested, I'm open to tutoring small groups this summer on the verbal section. I have a high success rate in regard to helping young people get into specialized high schools - I'm a Teachers College Columbia grad.}}
Why do animals grieve and why do we see grief in different species of animals? 
_____(Q) Whatever its value, grief is the price of commitment, that wellspring of both happiness and sorrow.
_____(R) It's been suggested that grief reactions may allow for the reshuffling of status relationships, the filling of a reproductive vacancy left by the deceased, or for fostering continuity of the group. 
_____(S) Whatever the reasons, it's likely that grief evolved to serve different functions in different species.
_____(T) Some further theorize that perhaps mourning strengthens social bonds among the survivors who band together to pay their last respects. 
_____(U) This may enhance group cohesion at a time when it's likely to be weakened. 

On January 14, 1967, counterculture leaders called for a “human be-in” in San Francisco, California.

_____(Q) The Summer of Love boasted music festivals, poetry readings, speeches, and even theater.

_____(R) Thousands of people answered the call, gathering in Golden Gate Park to promote peace, happiness, and love.

_____(S) For the most part, the Summer of Love proved successful in its ability to spread the counterculture message, but by the fall of 1967, increased incidents of crime and drug abuse by hippies gathered in Haight-Ashbury signaled a change in the movement. 

_____(T) The Haight-Ashbury neighborhood of San Francisco quickly became the gathering place and home for many displaced youth who came to celebrate the counterculture event.

_____(U) During the spring, more disillusioned youth traveled to San Francisco upon hearing a declaration that the summer of 1967 would be the “Summer of Love.”

Answers are below:

grief - 5,1,4,2,3  Q=5, R=1, S=4, T=2,, U=3 (this one is tricky because the final sentence is a concluding sentence that does not follow logically from the previous four.) 

summer of love - 4,1,5,3,2

Monday, March 23, 2015

Bubble-wrap, Ukiyo-e, Red - 3 new scrambled paragraphs

Notice:  All of the scrambled paragraphs on this blog are a free, non-commercial resource purely for educational purposes. By using the site you agree not to reproduce this material on another site.

Welcome to the best scrambled paragraph site on the internet.Answers are below the scrambled paragraphs.

{{By the way, if anyone is interested, I'm open to tutoring small groups this summer on the verbal section. I have a high success rate in regard to helping young people get into specialized high schools - I'm a Teachers College Columbia grad.}}

Bubble wrap was originally designed to be used as wallpaper.

_____ (Q) However, this wallpaper idea didn’t sell too well.

_____ (R) The two were not, however, trying to make a product to be used as packaging material.

_____ (S) It was invented by two engineers: Al Fielding and Swiss inventor Marc Chavannes, in Hawthorne, N.J. in 1957.

_____ (T) They started out by sealing two shower curtains together in such a way that it would capture air bubbles which would make the textured appearance for their wallpaper. 

_____ (U) Rather, they were trying to create a textured wallpaper.

The Japanese art of Ukiyo-e developed in the city of Edo (now Tokyo) during the Tokugawa or Edo Period (1615-1868).

_____ (Q) Thus, with their political power effectively removed, the merchant class turned to art and culture as arenas in which they could participate on an equal basis with the elite upper classes (warriors, farmers, and artisans).

_____ (R) Although the cultural status of Ukiyo-e was initially considered "low" art, by and for the non-elite classes, its artistic and technical caliber is consistently remarkable. 

_____ (S) It was, indeed, the collaboration among the merchants, artists, publishers, and townspeople of Edo that gave Ukiyo-e its unique voice.

_____ (T) The social hierarchy of the day, officially established by shogun rulers, placed the merchants, the wealthiest segment of the population, at the lower end of the scale.

_____ (U) In turn, Ukiyo-e provided these groups with a means of attaining cultural status outside the sanctioned realms of shogunate, temple, and court.

Recently more research has focused on the relationship between color and psychological functioning.

_____ (Q) Two further experiments establish the link between red and avoidance motivation as indicated by behavioral (i.e., task choice) and psychophysiological (i.e., cortical activation) measures.
_____ (R) Four experiments, in fact, demonstrate that the brief perception of red prior to an important test (e.g., an IQ test) impairs performance, and this effect appears to take place outside of participants' conscious awareness.  

_____ (S) Red impairs performance on achievement tasks, because red is associated with the danger of failure in achievement contexts and evokes avoidance motivation.  

_____ (T) All of these findings suggest that care must be taken in how red is used in achievement contexts and illustrate how color can act as a subtle environmental cue that has important influences on behavior. 

_____ (U) Indeed, startling findings occurred in regard to the relationship between red and performance attainment. 

Answers below:

Bubble wrap:  Q=5,R=2,S=1,T=4,U=3
Ukiyo-e: 2,5,3,1,4
Red: 4,3,2,5,1

Saturday, January 31, 2015

3 scrambled paragraphs: Pottery, Pachinko, The Peasants Revolt

Notice:  All of the scrambled paragraphs on this blog are a free, non-commercial resource purely for educational purposes. By using the site you agree not to reproduce this material on another site.

Welcome to the best scrambled paragraph site on the internet. Answers are below the scrambled paragraphs.

In one of the standard methods of primitive potters, rings or coils of clay are built up from a circular base.

_____ (Q) It is not known when or where the potter's wheel was introduced.

_____ (R) When a pot is built up from the base by hand, it is impossible that it will be perfectly round.

_____ (S) The walls of the pot are then smoothed and thinned (by simultaneous pressure on the inner and outer surfaces) before being fired in a bread oven or in the most elementary of kilns - a hole in the ground, above which a bonfire is lit.

_____ (T) The solution to this problem is the potter's wheel, which has been a crucial factor in the history of ceramics.

_____ (U) Indeed it is likely that it developed very gradually, from a platform on which the potter turns the pot before shaping another side (thus avoiding having to walk around it).

In 1381, some 35 years after the Black Death had swept through Europe decimating over one third of the population, there was a shortage of people left to work the land. 
_____ (Q) In addition to this, extra revenue was required to support a long and drawn out war with the French, and so a poll tax was introduced.
_____ (R) Recognizing the power of ‘supply and demand’, the remaining peasants began to re-evaluate their worth and subsequently demanded higher wages and better working conditions.
_____ (S) Not surprisingly the government of the day, comprised mainly of the land-owning Bishops and Lords, passed a law to limit any such wage rise. 
_____ (T) Things appear to have come to a head when in May 1381 a tax collector arrived in the Essex village of Fobbing to find out why the people there had not paid their poll tax and the villagers promptly threw him out
_____ (U) It was the third time in four years that such a tax had been applied and this crippling tax meant that everyone over the age of 15 had to pay one shilling - a significant amount to the average farm laborer! 

Answers are below:


Pottery:  -->4,2,1,3,5   ------> 4 = Q, 2 = R, 1 = S, 3 = T, 5 = U
Pachinko ---------------> 5,1,4,2,3
Peasant's revolt of 1381 ----> 3,1,2,5,4

Please enjoy a cool video. it's time to smile again!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

3 new scrambled paragraphs

Notice:  All of the scrambled paragraphs on this blog are a free, non-commercial resource purely for educational purposes. By using the site you agree not to reproduce this material. 

Answers are below the exercises.

We need marine algae a whole lot more than they need us. 

_____ (Q) Trees and other land plants are very important, no doubt about it. 

_____ (R) Think about it, 70 to 80 percent of all the oxygen we breathe comes from algae! 

_____ (S) Without them we would really be sucking wind, but not for long! 

_____ (T) But for pure survival, we couldn’t make it without algae.

_____ (U) At this point, you may be saying, “Yo! What about the trees and other land plants?”

Tim Beatley has long been a leader in advocating for the "greening" of cities. 

_____ (Q) While these are important aspects of re-imagining urban living, they are not enough, says Beatley.

_____ (R) But too often, he notes, urban greening efforts focus on everything except nature. 

_____ (S) And any vision of a sustainable urban future must place its focus squarely on nature, on the presence, conservation, and celebration of the actual green features and natural life forms.

_____ (T) Instead, elements such as public transit, renewable energy production, and energy efficient building systems are emphasized. 

_____ (U) We must remember that human beings have an innate need to connect with the natural world (the biophilia hypothesis).

In mid-19th century America, most abolitionists were willing to move slowly toward their goal of ending slavery. 

_____ (Q) John Brown saw the cause in a different light.

_____ (R) Brown was unrepentant at trial, stating: "Now, if it is deemed necessary that I should forfeit my life for the furtherance of the ends of justice, and mingle my blood further with the blood of my children and with the blood of millions in this slave country whose rights are disregarded by wicked, cruel, and unjust enactments, I submit; so let it be done."

_____ (S) After U.S. Marines (commanded by Robert E. Lee) stormed the armory, a wounded Brown was captured.

_____ (T) He thought that "slavery, throughout its entire existence in the United States, is none other than the most barbarous, unprovoked and unjustifiable war of one portion of its citizens against another portion," and he was willing to pursue just about any means at his disposal to stop the practice.

_____ (U) On October 16, 1859, Brown, hoping to obtain weapons for a slave uprising, led a raid on the federal arsenal in Harpers Ferry, Virginia (now West Virginia), but Brown and his men were surrounded before they could escape.

The scrambled paragraphs King: Daniel Gauss
algae - 4,1,2,5,3 -  Q=4, R=1, S=2, T=5, U=3
bio-friendly cities - 3,1,5,2,4: Q=3, R-1, S=5, T=2, U=4
john brown - 1,5,4,2,3 - Q=1, R=5, S=4, T=2, U=3

Thursday, October 16, 2014

This site was featured in the New York Daily News

The New York Daily News recently ran an article about how difficult the SHSAT is and how an African American alumni group from Stuyvesant is protesting the use of features, on the test, like 'scrambled paragraphs.' They want the test to reflect the 'Common Core' curriculum.

This blog was chosen by the News to illustrate an example of what a scrambled paragraph is.

{{{click on image to enlarge}}}

How do you feel about the current SHSAT?  I actually supported de Blasio as mayor and provided feedback, as a supporter, recommending that the SHSAT be changed so that there could be greater diversity in the specialized schools. One of the reasons I put all these scrambled paragraphs up here for free was to make sure that everyone, regardless of race or social class, would have access to practicing these logic-based questions which are not taught during the regular school day. 

Furthermore, I don't think we'll have educational equality of opportunity until all young people in this city live in safe neighborhoods and in families where the parents can meaningfully work and provide adequately for their children.  I think greater economic equality will mean greater educational equality.

That being said, I take my hat off to the Asian parents I have met and worked with in the past who worked hard and made unbelievable sacrifices to ensure that their children were ready for this test. This is the population that is ignored in SHSAT debates - there are some Chinese immigrant parents who work 12 to 14 hours a day to pay for their children's education and their amazing commitment should be acknowledged and lauded.

Sorry for the editorializing - please enjoy doing the scrambled paragraphs on this blog.