|1. promise||11. G|
|2. the Babylonians||12. C|
|3. habits||13. H|
|4. perseverance||14. J|
|5. YES||15. A|
|6. NOT GIVEN||16. C|
|7. NO||17. A|
|8. YES||18. C|
|9. NO||19. B|
|10. YES||20. A|
|Level||Band||Listening Score||Reading Score|
Legend: Academic word (?) New word
People celebrate the beginning of each year at different times depending on their cultural traditions. But one of the most common times to celebrate the New Year is by the Gregorian calendar. People also call this way of measuring days, months and years the Western or Christian calendar. On this calendar, the first day of the new year is January 1. People call this holiday “New Year’s Day”.
People love to celebrate New Year’s Day. Some celebrate with parties and music. They may sing traditional songs about old times and good friends. Some people celebrate quietly with family and friends. Other people go to church on New Year’s Day. People may ask each other, and God, for forgiveness for the wrong things that happened the year before. People can leave their mistakes in the old year. Instead, they look to the future. They think about how they can make the new year better, or different, than the year before.
One common way people try to make a new beginning is by making New Year’s resolutions. A New Year’s resolution is a promise you make to yourself. It usually means a change of behavior or a new goal.
People believe that the first New Year’s resolutions were made thousands of years ago by the Babylonians . The most popular New Year’s resolution for the ancient Babylonians was to return borrowed farm equipment! Today, the most popular New Year’s resolutions are usually ways for people to improve themselves. People promise to do things like stop smoking or pay back money that they owe. People also commonly make resolutions about relationships and health.
On the first day of the New Year people feel great about the changes they hope to make. But what happens after some time has passed? Experts say that most people do not keep their resolutions for very long. There are many reasons why people often do not keep their resolutions. The main reason is that it is difficult to make changes. But there are a few ways to make it easier to make good changes.
Be realistic and detailed. Many people make a goal that is too big or not clear. Your resolution may be to learn English better. But you may not know how to make that happen! Instead, make a resolution that is smaller and more detailed. Making smaller goals will help you to get better at the exact thing you want to do. It will also make you able to measure your success. And that will be encouraging!
Get as much support as you can. Ask other people to help you remember your resolutions. When you make a promise to someone else, it is easy to remember. It will also make you want to keep your resolution. Some people make resolutions with someone else. For example, if you wanted to exercise more, you could plan to exercise with a friend. Then you can encourage each other and have fun too. Even if you have no one to help you keep your resolution, there are websites on the Internet that offer help. One website sends encouraging information about your resolution, such as information about exercising. The website will even send emails to help you remember your resolution.
Start one new healthy habit to replace every unhealthy one. Many people make New Year’s resolutions to stop bad habits . These habits may be things like eating unhealthy food, or playing too many video games. It is difficult just to stop a habit. Instead, replace it with something else. For example, instead of eating unhealthy food snacks, plan healthy things to eat. Make a resolution to eat more fruits and vegetables. Or, in the case of video games, replace the habit with something healthier. Make a resolution to get more exercise. At the times you would play a video game, play a sport with your friends instead.
However, sometimes a bad habit is not just a habit. Sometimes a bad habit is really an addiction. Substances like cigarettes or alcohol can cause dependence. A person’s mind or body depends on these substances. For example, when you stop using cigarettes, you may feel sick. You will want the cigarettes very badly. Stopping an addiction is much more difficult than stopping a bad habit. If you are stopping an addiction, look for more help. Visit our website for more ideas.
It is also good to remember that no one is perfect. Even if we fail one day, we can keep working on our resolutions. People may forget their New Year’s resolutions or want to give up. But everyone can remember these helpful ideas: Make detailed goals and get help from friends. Start new good habits as you stop old bad ones. Remind yourself and others that you are not alone. And with perseverance , good changes can last throughout the whole year.
How easy is it for us to change our lives - and why?
In 1990, a young American named Christopher McCandless gave up his career plans, left behind everyone he knew, including his family, and went off on an adventure. He was 22 at the time. In an act of kindness, he donated all his savings to the famous charity, Oxfam International, and hitchhiked his way through America to Alaska. His decisions were so unusual for his age that Jon Krakauer wrote a book about them called Into the Wild, and Sean Penn directed a film that had the same title.
Of course, this is an unusual story. Most college graduates would not do quite the same thing. However, studies do show that in teenage years, people are more likely to try out new experiences . Instead of following the family career path, for example, and working his way up the same organisation like his grandfather did, a 15-year-old may dream about becoming a traveller - only to find in his early 20s that this fascination with new places is declining and change is less attractive. This age-related trend can be observed in all cultures.
The reason why people all over the world become less keen to change as they get older may be because people’s lives generally follow similar patterns and involve similar demands . Most people, wherever they are, aim to find a job and a partner. As they get older, they may have young children to look after and possibly elderly family members. These responsibilities cannot be achieved without some degree of consistency, which means that new experiences and ideas may not have a place in the person’s life. New experiences may bring excitement but also insecurity, and so most people prefer to stay with the familiar.
However, not every individual is the same. One toddler may want to play a different game every day and get fed up if nothing changes at the nursery . Another may seek out and play with the same children and toys on every visit. Young children who avoid new experiences will grow up to be more conventional than others . Psychologists argue that those who have more open personalities as children are more open than others might be when they are older. They also suggest that young men have a greater interest in novelty than women, although, as they age, this desire for new experiences fades more quickly than it does in women.
The truth is that, as we get older, we prefer the things we know. We tend to order the same meals in restaurants, sit on the same side of the train when we commute to work, go on holiday to the same places and construct our day in the same way. If you are older than 20, remember that your openness to new experiences is slowly declining.
So you are better off making a new start today than postponing it until later.
Sleep may reduce mistakes in memory , according to a first-of-its-kind study led by a scientist at Michigan State University.
The findings, which appear in the September issue of the journal Learning El Memory, have practical implications for many people, from students doing multiple-choice tests to elderly people confusing their medicine, says Kimberly Fenn, principal investigator and assistant professor of psychology.
‘It’s easy to muddle things in your mind,’ Fenn says. This research suggests that after sleep, you’re better able to pick out the incorrect parts of that memory.’ Fenn and colleagues from the University of Chicago and Washington University in St Louis studied the presence of incorrect or false memory in groups of college students. While previous research has shown that sleep improves memory, this study is the first one that looks at errors in memory, she said.
Study participants were ‘trained’ by being shown or listening to lists of words. Then, twelve hours later, they were shown individual words and asked to identify which words they had seen or heard in the earlier session. One group of students was trained at 10 a.m. and tested at 10 p.m. after the course of a normal sleepless day . Another group was trained at night and tested twelve hours later in the morning, after about six hours of sleep. Three experiments were conducted . In each experiment, the results showed that students who had slept did not have as many problems with false memory and chose fewer incorrect words.
How does sleep help? The answer isn’t known, Fenn said, but she suspects it may be due to sleep strengthening the source of the memory. The source, or context in which the information is acquired, is a vital element of the memory process.
In other words, it may be easier to remember something if you can also remember where you first heard or saw it. Or perhaps the people who didn’t sleep as much during the study received so much other information during the day that this affected their memory ability, Fenn said.
Further research is needed, she said, adding that she plans to study different population groups, particularly the elderly. ‘We know older individuals generally have worse memory performance than younger individuals.
We also know from other research that elderly individuals tend to be more prone to false memories,’ Fenn said. ‘Given the work we’ve done, it’s possible that sleep may actually help them to reject this false information. And potentially this could help to improve their quality of life.’
You can view the translation of this article in Vietnamese here .
The Kiwi lives only in New Zealand . It is a very strange bird because it cannot fly. The Kiwi is the same size as a chicken . It has no wings or tails. It does not have any feathers like other birds. It has hair on its body. Each foot has four toes . Its beak is very long.
The shy, flightless kiwi likes a lot of trees around it. It sleeps during the day because the sunlight hurts its eyes.This nocturnal bird is active only at night. It can smell things with its nose. It is the only bird in the world that can smell things. The kiwi's eggs are very big.
There are only a few kiwis in New Zealand now. A recent survey shows that kiwis are disappearing rapidly from the forests where they have lived for thousands of years. People hardly see them except in a New Zealand Zoo. The kiwi is heading towards extinction.
In the past millions of kiwis living in the forests. Their only predator during that time was the large New Zealand eagle.This great eagle became extinct many years ago. The rapid disappearance of the kiwis started when man came to settle here. They brought along with them dogs, cats and Australian possums. Besides man, these animals also like to kill and eat kiwis. Thus reducing the numbers of this nocturnal bird. Many people who are concern to conserve the kiwi predict that it may disappear completely in less than 10 years.
To avoid this, the government states that people cannot simply kill kiwis because they are on the endangered species list . New Zealanders want their kiwis to live. The kiwi is very special to the New Zealanders. It has become the country's national symbol as one can see a picture of a kiwi on New Zealand money. Apart from that, people from New Zealand are sometimes called kiwis.
You can practice the dictation of this article here .