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. 

Frankly, 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.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

3 more scrambled paragraphs: Ghazali, Balloon Dog, John Coltrane

Notice:  All of the scrambled paragraphs on this blog are a free, non-commercial resource purely for educational purposes.  They are 100% legal under the Fair Usage Law.  (Basically I took properly cited source material and meaningfully changed it into a unique educational tool.) No commercial entity has the right to remove and display this content. By using this website you tacitly agree to the terms that this material cannot be reproduced for distribution via the internet or other means.

Answers to the exercises are below all the exercises. Good luck!

By the age of 33 Ghazali was appointed a professor in Baghdad, where he became recognized as an authority on canon law. 

_____ (Q) His greatest work of synthesis was in The Revivification of the Religious Sciences, which also argues that only the Sufi emphasis on inner devotion can fulfill the strict demands of the Qur’an. 

_____ (R) In spite of his success, Ghazali entered a period of spiritual crisis. 

_____ (S) Therefore, in 1095 Ghazali became a wandering ascetic, returning to the Sufism of his youth, spending 11 years in meditation and retirement, until a Sultan persuaded him to teach again. 

_____ (T) As he wrote in his autobiography: “I examined my motives in my work of teaching, and realized that it was not a pure desire for the things of God, but that the impulse moving me was the desire for an influential position and public recognition." 

_____ (U) In the public teachings and writings which followed his retirement, Ghazali set forth a synthesis of orthodox theology and mysticism. 

Perhaps Jeff Koons' most famous work of art is his ‘balloon dog,’ a giant polished steel structure which looks like a long inflated balloon twisted and shaped into the image of a dog.

_____ (Q) The Balloon Dog is, in fact, ‘eternally optimistic’ while simultaneously creating a dialogue between its interior and exterior surroundings through its reflective surfaces.

_____ (R) Indeed, he reveals that the design inspiration for his inflatable pieces stems from the human body and how a breath of air can become a symbol of optimism. 

_____ (S) Jeff Koons has, in fact, been into ‘inflatable’ art since the beginning of his career as an artist.

_____ (T) The huge reflective surfaces give the dog a light, airy balloon feel, while, in reality, the sculpture weighs an immense amount.

_____ (U) He often speaks about the concept of inflatable objects and their symbolic meaning for life itself.

The Whitney Museum in Manhattan currently has a Jeff Koons show:

While A Love Supreme is a recognized musical masterpiece, it had enormous personal significance for Coltrane.

_____ (Q) In the spring of 1957, his dependence on drugs and alcohol lost him one of the best jobs in jazz.

_____ (R) Alternately catatonic and brilliant, Coltrane's behavior and playing became increasingly erratic and Davis fired him after a live show that April.

_____ (S) Soon after, Coltrane resolved to clean up his act.

_____ (T) He was playing sax and touring with Miles Davis' popular group when he became unreliable and strung out.

_____ (U) He would later write, in the 1964 liner notes to A Love Supreme, "In the year of 1957, I experienced, by the grace of God, a spiritual awakening, which was to lead me to a richer, fuller, more productive life."

Here Coletrane is without Miles doing "Alabama" - which was created after 4 African American children were killed by racists in Alabama in a church fire.


Ghazali:   5,1,3,2,4   (Q= 5, R=1, S=3, T=2, U=4) 
Balloon Dog:  4,3,1,5,2     
John Coltrane   1,3,4,2,5