Sunday, October 31, 2010

Essay on Niagara Falls

Essay on Niagara Falls

Niagara falls were formed 10,000 years ago in Ontario in Canada. This was a result of glaciers moving back to show the steep face of the mountain. This allowed the waters of Lake Erie to flow north, over the slope, to Lake Ontario. The steep face gradually eroded back toward Lake Erie, a process that has also formed the Niagara Gorge the Whirlpool Rapids and the Whirlpool. This is how Niagara Falls were formed.

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Niagara falls is the most well known waterfall in the world. As a result of this it attracts millions of tourists every year. There are many great hotels near the falls to witness this beautiful waterfall. However there are problems including traffic jams, crime and business problems like expanding industries.The Upper Course

The upper courses of the River Tees are all the features and activities done in the Source area. Here are mountain ranges with the highest being Cross Fell at 893m as I mentioned earlier. Also, there is another mountain with a peak of 775m. The lake flows from here where it slowly becomes the River Tees. There is a V-shaped valley in its early course, which holds many things.

A dam has been built here to form Cow Green Reservoir. This is a very important water supply for the towns further downstream. Farms are also in the v-shaped valley with the highest lying 370m above sea level. The ground is waterlogged so crops can’t be grown, but sheep are farmed there, spending most of their time on hillsides. This is also significant for the towns downstream as it is used for food purposes.

The climate in the upper course is quite awful. Precipitation reaches up to 1500mm a year with about 3 months snow cover. Also contributing to the bad weather is the fact there is barely any sunshine. Because of this, Whinestone waterfalls are formed. This happens when the river drops down a vertical step, as the Whinestone.


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Essay on Learning Disabilities in the Classroom

Essay on Learning Disabilities in the Classroom

About twelve percent of the student population is diagnosed with learning disabilities, and the majority of these students are placed in regular, non-specialized educational schools (Roewenthall 2). Many consider this to be a problem and a highly important issue. Should children with learning disabilities be able to participate in a school classroom where the majority of the students are without disabilities and at a higher learning level? Are the teachers prepared and trained to teach children with specialized learning problems? Many believe this creates a problem for the other students who are not affected by the disorder, as well as the child with the disorder not receiving a proper specialized education.

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Research has shown that children with learning disabilities progress at slower levels and require specialized attention and teaching methods in order to obtain a complete education ( Roewenthall 16). If a child does not receive this particular notice, then they are unable to learn to the fullest extent of their masked ability. The students with the learning disorder then fall behind, feeling inadequate and inferior to their fellow classmates. This can cause a number of serious problems for the student as well as the rest of the class.

For one, having the disorder will cause the student to develop chronic social and emotional disorders as a result from being at a slower level and feeling “left out”. Robert Brooks has done a great deal of research on this issue.

In conducting therapy with these youths, I became increasingly aware that most were burdened by feelings of low self-worth and incompetence and that many believed that their situation would not improve. Not surprisingly, this sense of hopelessness served as a major obstacle to future success. Once children believe that things will not improve, they are likely to engage in self-defeating ways of coping such as quitting or avoiding tasks, blaming others for their difficulties, or becoming class clowns or bullies. Thus, a negative cycle is often set in motion, intensifying feelings of defeat and despair.

As a result of the students’ lack of confidence and self-esteem, this student can cause possible distractions in the classroom. The disabled student’s inability to grasp the concepts of the studies might distract the other students, causing them to fall behind in their studies as well. It is important how each student is approached and valued in the classroom. Children that feel that their opinion has worth, that are liked by teacher and peers, and are challenged academically will excel in any classroom, regardless if they are affected by a learning disorder (Brooks). But a child that is ridiculed, or singled out because of their inability to comprehend or perform at a level compatible to the rest of the class, will not have a positive school experience and possibly prevent others from receiving this positive experience as well. Another problem that faces students with learning disabilities being placed in regular educational schools, is whether or not the teacher is qualified to handle the students specified needs. The majority of teachers teaching in regular educational schools are not trained and educated on how to teach children with learning disorders because they did not receive a degree in special education ( Brooks 11). On that note, is it truly fair to the student with the disorder to be educated by someone not specified in that field of education?

Both of these problems pose challenges that need solutions. What can be done to enable the proper education to children with learning disorders, and at the same time ensure that the rest of the students, not affected by the disorder, are receiving the proper education as well?
One solution could be to divide the class according to the different learning levels of every individual student. Students that learn on a slower level and are affected by learning disabilities can be grouped and taught by a teacher specializing in the education of students with learning disorders. The remainder of the class would be grouped and taught by a regular teacher. Each individual would feel more comfortable in his or her group, enabling that individual to develop confidence in themself. However, as ideal as this solution would be, each school would have to hire an extra teacher per grade and would be entirely too costly for that schools budget. The demand for teachers would be too great to be met. Also, the slower learning group might be farther behind the other regular paced group, causing obvious distinctions between the class, making it difficult for the class to move on to the next grade level as a whole. Another solution would be for every school to require each teacher to attend a series of workshops on how to teach students with learning disorders. Teachers are an essential link between children with learning disabilities and the interventions and services that can help them. There is no student with a learning disability who can not learn, if a teacher has received appropriate training and is willing to spend the time, using his or her expertise to reach and teach that child (Dixie). Workshops specializing in learning disabilities would certify that each teacher is completely trained and prepared on how to handle children with learning disorders, while at the same time teach the rest of the class on a regular level. Each teacher would have to commit to attending these workshops as well as truly wanting to get something out of them. This would be a somewhat successful solution depending on the school truly enforcing it and the teachers’ commitment. For some schools it might be financially unrealistic to send every teacher to an annual workshop, but for other schools might very well be accomplished.

The most realistic solution leads back to the students parents. It is necessary for the parent of a student with a learning disorder to get involved with the school and develop a relationship with their child’s teacher. Meeting regularly to discuss the child’s improvements or lack there of, what needs to be done, and specific goals to be reached with that child is imperative. Also, it would be beneficial for the parent to educate the teacher on the child’s specific learning disorder and what to expect and be prepared for with that child. The parent and the teacher must work together to achieve full success with that child. If the teacher commits themself to helping the disabled student with their needs, then the whole atmosphere of the classroom will be affected positively. Contrary to what many believe, children with learning disorders are typically of average or in some instances above average intelligence (Roewenthall 22). Therefore, as long as given the appropriate amount of attention, students with learning disorders can learn as affectively as others. With the teacher and the parents communicating on a regular basis, parents can express their concerns and suggestions for the child and the teacher can do the same for the parents. Thus inevitably causing all distractions and problems affecting the other students to cease.

Whether hiring more teachers, requiring workshops, or developing effective parent/ teacher relationships, something must be done to assure students a proper education. As more and more children are being diagnosed with learning disabilities, measures must be taken to guarantee that the educational system does not suffer and fail as a result. Parents and teachers are a child’s greatest advocate and influence and when working together can enable a proper education for that child whether effected by a learning disorder or not.

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Saturday, October 30, 2010

Essay on History of Iran

Essay on History of Iran

The revolution in 1979 brought some major changes to the way Iran functioned, especially the women. The fundamentalist government took over Iran, and began to change things. Women began facing repression, and they continue to face it.

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They are denied participation in public activities, education, employment and politics (Williams, pg.116). They are required to wear burqa’s, which is a head to toe covering for women so there body shape is not revealed. The though of the fundamentalist government was that women are physically, intellectually, and morally inferior to men (Williams, pg.117). In 1997, a stricter dress code was imposed on the women. Modern outfits such as skirts, and suits are not allowed, even underneath the burqa. Any other accessories are not permitted if they are glittery or showy. Their definition of women is the duty is to bear children, take care of the home, and provide comfort and satisfaction to their husbands.

Some of the rules enforced on the women are the hijab, which is the dress code, and is mandatory in all public places. They cannot use cosmetics, obtain a passport without their husband’s permission, and be in the company of men who are not relatives and many more. If any of these rules are not abided by, the punishments can include verbal abuse, 74 lashes with a whip, or imprisonment for one month to a year (Williams pg.117). When a lady is accused of sexual misconduct, it is legal for them to be stoned.

Women are thought to be incapable of making important decisions; therefore they are not permitted to be judges. Some women resist against these rules, and protest for their equal rights. One law use to be that they did not have custody of their children, but they fought for it and had a law passed that granted them some custody to the rights of their children. Within the government one can see a sufficient amount of corruption, an example of this is that in Islam temporary marriages are permitted, although the regime uses this as a way of having ‘prostitution’ seem legal in an Islamic way. They do this by having a temporary marriage for an hour, which allows them in their mind to have an official network of prostitution (Williams, pg.121). This is regarded as twisting the situation.

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Essay on Green Revolution in 500 Words

Short Essay on Green Revolution

The Green Revolution began in Mexico in the 1940’s for the main purpose of assisting underprivileged farmers increase their wheat production. Funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, Norman Borlaug and others spent twenty years breeding high-yield dwarf wheat that resisted numerous plant pests and diseases and yielded two to three times more grain than traditional varieties.

The Green Revolution then expanded from Mexico to other countries such as Pakistan, India, and China where it successfully improved faming methods to help alleviate world hunger. Pakistan produced 8.4 million tons in 1970, up from 4.6 million in 1965 and India's production was 20 million tons in 1970, up from 12.3 million 1965.

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Now, the Green Revolution has expanded to the countries within Africa as these countries face a dramatic food crisis. The joint program in Africa called Sasakawa-Global 2000 has helped farmer with improved methods of farming such as choosing seed and controlling weeds but the main issue is the lack of transportation to transport the goods. The countries in Africa have the ability to double or triple the food production but lack the infrastructure and also are faced with poor soil and shortage of trained agriculturists. Another issue that the Green Revolution aided in was the topic of overpopulation threatening the food supply. Agricultural biotechnology is the solution to this issue and according to Borlaug is an essential tool in developing nations. This innovative technology is precise as well as less time consuming compared to other methods and can double or triple crop yields.

By using less land, biotech farming has less impact on the environment compared to conventional farming, which can destroy wildlife habitat when expanding the amount of cropland used. Due to the higher cost of biotechnology, governments are highly encouraged to help aid in this brilliant new method and address patents, education and research. In conclusion, the Green revolution has used better agricultural methods to increase crop yields due to the ever expanding world population and has aided numerous farmers in the developing countries throughout the world.

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Friday, October 29, 2010

Essay on Functionalist Theory

Essay on Functionalist Theory

The theory I have chosen for this theory application is Functionalism. Functionalism dates back to the 19th Century and has been brought along and expanded on by many Theorists throughout its history.

Technological advances and changing political events through out history helped to shape the functionalism theories of the 20th Century European and United States Sociologists. In keeping with this Sociology 1000 class I will use the 20th Century Functionalism ideas of Talcott Parsons.

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When we look at the Functionalist system theory in the larger scope, this theory looks at the questions that come up concerning the integration of society by means of consensus, or agreement on how its needs will be met. The second element is Social Action. This takes place between actors and within a social system. The social system is one part of the systems theory and is based on the interaction between actors or people. The system theory is defined as a whole unit with boundaries and connected parts, in which an event takes place. The other two elements within the system theory are Cultural and Personality systems. The cultural system includes values and norms that influence individual choices. The personality system is the motivations and need based choices that govern choices made. Parsons also believed that change does take place but in small amounts. When equilibrium is disrupted, it must be quickly restored as close to original as possible.

A whole unit with interconnected parts leads me to the image of my large semi-organized family. The social action is the confrontation that occurs within the boundaries of my house between my two boys. In these instances, I can only hope that the Cultural system will kick in and my boys will, with the values and norms instilled in them, make individual choices to respect each other and their own space. The Personality System takes place when I need to write papers for school. I am motivated to complete my work. I need peace and quiet to do that effectively. These needs and motivations help me to decide to make popcorn (two separate bowls) and put in a movie for the boys to watch. Equilibrium happens in my house when mom gets her paper finished and the children are in bed. Peace and equilibrium are restored.

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Conservation Tillage Essay

Conservation Tillage Essay

Conservation tillage is an extremely important, yet sometimes over looked, operation in today’s highly competitive production farming practices. When people look at the advantages of conservation tillage, many would agree that it is of utmost importance to compare and choose a system that works well on their farm and that also has a positive impact on the environment. There are many different types of conservation tillage practices and each have their purposes, when used under the correct circumstances they can prove to be very effective. There are many different tillage systems to examine when looking at conservation tillage. While there are many well known conservation practices, no-till farming is increasing in popularity.

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A no-till tillage system is one in which soil is not broken or turned over prior to planting and herbicides are heavily relied on for weed control. No-till is usually used in conjunction with a crop rotation to create a system that has proven to be very practical. During the planting season a grower using this option will often make the first and only pass through a field with the planter, where as in conventional tillage a grower may plow first. This planter has usually been modified slightly or specially designed to plant in unbroken soil, rough conditions, and through tough crop residues. No-till farming has many benefits including reduced field and machinery preparation, money saved on equipment, and fuel and fertilizer costs.

The benefits of no-till farming not only apply to the farmer but also to the environment. Another issue to consider is that the residue left behind by no-till farming can drastically reduce soil erosion by both wind and water, because crop residues cover and protect the soil, much like a coat protects from the elements. Improved soil quality such as better soil-aggregate formation, microbial activity in the soil, water infiltration, water storage and increased soil organism activity have proven to be enhanced in a no-till situation. No-till practice is arguably the most environmentally friendly system known. Another benefit to consider is that no-till takes less fuel thus keeping air pollution down. This is most important at a time in which the agricultural industry-at-large must become more conscious of the environment in which we live.

Run-off is another environmental danger that we needs to be kept in mind as it can cause many problems. Sediment run-off occurs when water picks up soil particles and carries them to another location, usually a nearby stream or river. This can decrease water cleanliness and in turn can be harmful to many aquatic species. Run-off can also carry chemicals and fertilizers off the applied area and into steams and rivers. This form of run-off can also lead to serious problems as it could potentially kill off and destroy valuable marine and wetland ecosystems. However, no-till can be a solution to this problem. Mark Evans a soil and water conservation specialist with Purdue University Cooperative Extension Services and Clean Water Indiana says, “No-till is without question the most effective conservation practice for reducing soil erosion and improving water quality. The crop residue cover and infiltration rates associated with continuous no-till reduce more agricultural runoff of contaminants than other tillage systems.”

No-till farming is becoming more popular year by year due to the significant advantages, especially on larger farms where producers have many acres to cover. Dan Towery, a natural resource specialist at the Conservation Technology Information Center at Purdue University, believes that there will, more than likely, be an increase in the amount of no-till acres this year. While stating his reasoning Towery said, “When no-till is used, there is a $20 to $30 an acre decrease in production costs. Farmers have shown it works and is easy, especially with no-till soybeans.”

More and more farmers across the United States are discovering these benefits of no-till farming. For example, according to Mark Evans, “Hoosier farmers began to see the benefits of no-till in 1990, when 9 percent of corn and 8 percent of soybean fields were planted no-till. In 1995, Indiana became the first corn belt state with more than half of its soybeans planted no-till. Indiana remains a no-till leader in the corn belt. In 2000 in Indiana 21 percent of corn and 60 percent of soybeans were no-till.”

Even with all the advantages of no-till farming, certain disadvantages are certainly present. Locations to distribute manure and keep livestock through winter are major concerns of a combination livestock and grain producer. If no-till is practiced the farmer can not run livestock on unplowed fields to help offset feed cost and he has to find somewhere else to distribute his manure, which would be foolish considering manure adds valuable nutrients back to the soil at a low cost. Other disadvantages include: increased herbicide usage rate to accomplish effectiveness, increased seed cost due to increased populations, and difficulty dealing with an herbicide failure because of cultivating difficulty on no-till ground. A slower soil warm up time could also be a downfall when one remembers that large operations need to start planting early to finish before the window closes. Finally limited rotation options, especially with sod crops, add to the list of difficulties associated with no till farming.

In conclusion, tillage is an important agricultural practice not only in the United States but also in the entire world. Soil, although renewable at a rate of one inch per five hundred years, is an extremely important resource that we need to take extra care of because, for the most part, the soil we have today is the same soil future generations will have. In conservation tillage, it is important to work together to educate one another and use good practices when in the field, in order to preserve the most important element in agriculture, soil.

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Thursday, October 28, 2010

Short Essay on Drought

Sample Essay on Drought

In 1997, many countries experienced the harsh realities of the "El Nino" effect. This was the time when there was a drastic change in the weather system and many countries either faced severe droughts or floods. This was due to a fluctuation of the weather patterns in our environment.

Countries in Southeast Asia suffered serious consequences because of this. Regular monsoon seasons that were supposed to bring rains to the rainforests in Indonesia and other parts in the region did not occur. Many countries thus faced a drought, causing the ground to be dry and susceptible to forest fires.

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To make matters worse, the forest fires in Indonesia and Borneo resulted in a haze, which blanketed the whole region with smoke and dust particles. Due to a drought, there was not enough rain to putout the forest fires and winds were not strong enough to blow away the heavy dust particles that hung over the atmosphere.

Fortunately, countries in these regions did not face a severe water shortage due to conservation efforts undertaken. Water was used wisely and supplies were enough to last throughout the drought. Nevertheless, this has indeed taught us that environmental problems are no longer a country's affair. They go beyond boundaries and man-made borders.

The jungles and rainforests of many tropical countries are homes to many different species. The number and range of species living in these habitats are so wide and vast that many different species are still undiscovered.

Unfortunately, their job is greatly reduced due to deforestation that may have killed or annihilated the entire existence of a particular species even before they have been discovered.

Since ancient times, Man has cleared forests for agriculture and living space. What once used to be lush greenery have become cities and farms in just a matter of years or even months as technology advances. In just a matter of minutes, an has also chopped down trees that may have taken decades to become tall and strong.

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Critical Essay on Forrest Gump

Essay on Forrest Gump Movie

"Life is like a box of chocolates...You never know what you're going to get" –says the main character Forrest in the beginning of the movie Forrest Gump. This very unusual quote that leaves a peculiar feeling in viewer’s mind. Forrest himself is a very interesting person. Although the readers and the viewers know that he doesn’t have an IQ of a “normal” human it doesn’t stop them from loving and understanding him, maybe even realizing how this “abnormality” gives him an uniquely positive perspective of life. During his life, Forrest becomes a football player, a war hero, and a successful businessman. However, he always stays true not only to his friends, family and believes but also to his love for Jenny Curran. There are many adventures that Forrest has to face during his life, and both in the film and in the book they are somewhat different, but no matter where he is or what he is doing he is always thinking about Jenny. Forrest takes part in Vietnam War and while saving lives of many people he gets wounded. In the hospital he meets another very important hero, Lieutenant Dan. The life of this character is so damaged by the war that he is unable to get it back. But even at this, as many would think, dead end situation Forrest helps him not only financially but also morally.

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Robert Zemeckis, director of Forrest Gump, chooses not to include several adventures that are present in the book and to change the character’s personality. However, the adjustments to the main heroes’s characters and the addition of several touching moments change the book into a heart breaking movie. The viewer of the movie might notice few changes to the characters such as Jenny, Forrest’s mother, Lieutenant Dan, and Forrest himself. Furthermore, the scenes such as the long run of main character, Forrest’s meeting with Dan, and especially the ending of the film change the plot and make it more touching.

There are many differences that Robert Zemeckis makes to the characters. Some of the minor heroes were not included in the film because director chooses not to include several scenes. However, the most obvious change is made to Lieutenant Dan. This character is an intelligent, smart, but at the same time psychologically damaged by the war. The reader sees how his life of being a successful, self-confident history teacher transforms into something that Dan doesn’t want. At the same time in the movie it is hard to identify this sudden changes of Dan’s life and also hard to see his true spirit before the awful incident that made him loose his legs.

Furthermore, director chooses to change not only the appearance of the main character but also his personality. It seems as if in the book Forrest is much more smarter but at same time less innocent than he is in the film. This significant changes play an important role in the viewer’s perspective of Forrest. Also he is described as a big, tall, and a really strong person while in the movie the viewer would describe him as an average man. Jenny, and Forrest’s mother are the only two people that love Forrest the way he is. In the book, however, it seems as if Forrest’s mother doesn’t take him more than just an idiot. “How you gonna have a plan, Forrest?..You is a idiot. How is an idiot gonna have a plan?”(220) In the movie Robert Zemeckis decides to change that and makes her more confident in her son’s mental skills. However, his mental impairment doesn’t seem to bother Jenny, the love of Forrest’s life, who’s feelings toward Forrest evolve differently in the movie compare to the book. The viewer of Forrest Gump doesn’t know her real feelings and might even think that the main character is the person to whom she runs for a comfort and a place to stay until she is strong enough to run away again. This change certainly changes the viewer’s perspective on Jenny’s personality. These differences in characters certainly played a big and an important role in the choices of director. It is clear that from the book one gets a better and a more sincere view on characters and their lives. The selection of the characters is one of the most significant parts not only of the book but in the movie as well.

There are a lot of changes that director has made to make the story seem more real and interesting. In this book several scenes seem so unreal and absurd that the movie with them wouldn’t make the same impression on the viewer. The main change to the plot was made by the resolution of the movie when little Forrest, the main character’s son, stays with his father. This makes the story seem more hopeful and touching. Another scene is added to the film that makes the viewer connect even more to the character- the long run of Forrest Gump. While watching this moment in Forrest’s life it makes viewer think how he really feels. Also one should realize that maybe people stereotypes of different action made by people are not always right. Even before this all happens the young war hero meets with his friend, Lieutenant Dan, but this scene is changed in the movie which makes the entire plot different. Forrest didn’t save Dan’s “unwanted” life like it is stated in the movie, he meets him in the hospital and not one time helps a young history teacher out of misery. Furthermore, as stated before, there are several adventures that were not included in the movie. As many would think, this is what makes the film Forrest Gump so original. The changes that the director makes changes the movie not always in a better way but all of them together are the things that made this film great.

The one scene that is not entirely different and that is considered a climax part is the battle where Bubba, Forrest’s good friend, gets wounded and dies because of that. The director of the movie uses several techniques to make a big impression on the viewer. By using high angle, he makes the viewer see how awful and horrifying the whole scene of war is and by doing so shows how small and weak the human being is as oppose to war and it distractions. He also uses trick props (special effects) to actually show the bombs fall and create fire behind the main character.

But these are not the only techniques that help set this scene, the viewer also hears a voice over to show that Forrest is telling the whole story and to make one connect even more to the character and the plot. This scene is very dynamic and the director uses it to show war in an action. It would be more touching and more eye appealing if he would use the stop motion animation and an asynchronous sound. However, all the choices that Robert Zemeckis makes help the creation of a horrifying scene that makes the viewer understand that life of the main character is not going to be the same after the war and what happened to his friend.

Forrest Gump is one of these movies that make one think about the meaning of life. The theme of the film is an admonition not to give up on life. The main characters simple way of looking at life makes the viewer realize that surrender is not the best choice that could be taken in life.

Forrest Gump makes a big emphasis on how life holds something in the future and nobody knows what lies ahead. By contrasting Forrest's life with the lives of those around him, and by showing how the passage of time brings solace to even the most embittered hearts, the movie underlines this theme. The feather that is present in the beginning and in the end of the movie shows that there is more to come and that life goes on. The director’s use of this element makes the viewer wonder and hope. It also creates a feeling of fulfillment after finishing viewing the movie. Even the choice of actors plays an important role in Forrest Gump. Tom Hanks does an outstanding job with helping the viewer see his feelings and thoughts of the main character. Often, music can be useful in establishing a mood, but Forrest Gump is not exactly that kind of movie. There are sequences when the music is required but the director decides not to have it (for example during the Vietnam battle, during which Forrest deserves to be a hero).

It is hard to distinguish which of the mediums tell the story more powerfully and more successfully. Both the movie and the book have something that makes them different and better than one another. If talking only about the characters and their personalities, it is clear that the book has more to them than the movie. The personality of Lieutenant Dan in the movie is repulsive while in the book he is the character that makes not only think but also sympathize with him. However, the adjustments that the director makes with Forrest Gump’s personality shows this character in a better perspective. Robert Zemeckis makes good choices about not having some of the scenes that are present in the book. This choices are the reasons why this movie became a big hit. Before I started reading this book I thought that this movie is one those that are better than books. However, I was only right in a way and I think that the book has its strong points as well. Several moments in the film are so memorable that it is unbelievable that in the book they were different or didn’t even exist. I was attached to the characters and their personalities and couldn’t stop reading about them. I would consider the film more heart touching and more real rather than the book. The ending of the movie promises the viewer something special while in the book it seems like there is nothing to aim for in the future. Forrest Gump is an inspiration to many different people all over the world and the story of a young “abnormal” person makes not only the book interesting but creates an amazing movie.

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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Essay on Diwali Festival in India

India is called the country of Festivals. There are different festivals celebrated in different provinces. Diwali is the one, celebrated all over India.

Diwali also called "Festival of Lights" is celebrated in month of November of the year. Diwali is celebrated for four days according to Hindu Panchang (Calender).

First day is called as "Narak Chaturdashi". People rise very early in morning before dawn, wear new clothes and perform Pooja (worship God). Children burst crackers.

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In South India, people believe that Lord Krishna killed the evil Narakasura and brought peace upon the earth. They rise very early in the morning, wear new clothes, perform pooja and burst crackers.

Second day is usually "Laxmi Poojan",worship of Goddess of Wealth. This is very important day of the business people. Goddess Laxmi is worshipped at night.This is supposed to be the most auspicious day of Diwali.

In Northern India people play cards at night,new accounts are opened, and new vessels are bought. Houses are cleaned and white-washed. Goddess Laxmi is worshipped at night. Here people believe that Lord Rama came back to Ayodhya after spending fourteen years in the forest. So people celebrate his return.

Third day is called as Balipratipada.

Fourth day is called as "Bhaubeej". This day Brothers go to Sisters' houses to meet and sister performs the pooja of her brother.

In Diwali people decorate their houses with earthen lamps and colorful lights. It is a festival of colorful lights, lots of sweets, joy and fun.

Schools are closed for ten to fifteen days all over the India. A special interest for children on Diwali is the bursting of crackers. Sparklers light up the sky. People greet each other with joy and sweets are exchanged.

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Essay on Child Soldiers in Colombia

Argumentative Essay on Child Soldiers

In this essay paper, I will discuss Columbia’s use of child soldiers and child combatants as a human rights issue. This problem is in direct violation of Columbia’s national laws, treaty obligations and customary international law. I will then describe what the Columbian government says about its national law and practice regarding this human rights problem and how honest it is about its policies. Next presenting how this human right goes unnoticed by the Universal Declaration of human rights and the American Convention of human rights in which Columbia has ratified. And lastly, I will discuss what the government officials, national citizens and international actors should do to resolve this human rights issue.

In Columbia, like dozens of other countries around the world, children have become direct participants in war. Denied a childhood and often subjected to horrific violence, more than 14,000 of Columbia’s children fight as combatants in its armed forces. This is one of the highest totals in the world, following only Burma (Myanmar) and the Democratic Republic of Congo, which are believed to have significantly larger numbers of child combatants.

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An estimated eighty percent of the children under arms belong to one of the two guerrilla groups, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) or the National Liberation Army (ELN). At least one of every four irregular combatants in Colombia is under eighteen years of age. Of these, several thousand are under the age of fifteen, tragically ranging downwards to the age of ten.

Physically vulnerable and easily intimidated, children typically make well-trained soldiers. Some are kidnapped or recruited by force, and often obligated to follow orders under the threat of death. But most join armed groups by choice as conflict storms through their villages further destroying their society. Due to such destruction, children are often left without access to school; they are driven from their homes, or separated from loved ones. Many children perceive armed groups as their best chance for survival. Others seek escape from poverty, domestic violence or sexual abuse.

These young combatants participate in every aspect of contemporary warfare. The existence of new weapons that are lightweight and easy to fire, allow children to be more easily armed, requiring less training than ever before.# They wield AK-47s, M-16s, grenades and mortars on the front lines of combat, serve as human mine detectors, participate in suicide missions, carry supplies, and act as spies, messengers or lookouts.

Life for children who make up these forces is very much like that of their adult counterparts, with very little consideration made for their age. In training, they witness prisoners being tortured and mutilated. And often, they are made to kill three to four people a day within their squad, as each squad rotates day to day.# While in conflict, these child combatants march for days with very little rest and food. They are subjected to the harshest storms, and suffer from physical exhaustion, injury, disease, sudden death, and torture at the hands of the enemy.

Before most of these children have realized the strenuous demands of military life, it is too late to back out. Those who try to run away risk execution for fear that they will turn into infiltrators or informers. Their fate is determined by guerrilla “war councils” who vote by a show of hands. Many times, those who are ordered to carry out these executions are children themselves, and may even be the victim’s friend.

This saddening problem has not gone unnoticed by the Colombian government. Although there is no obvious protection promised in the national constitution of 1991, since December of 1999, it’s laws have prohibited military service recruitment of children under the age of eighteen. In that month, Colombia’s army demobilized more than 800 individuals who failed to meet this age requirement from its government forces. And those military authorities that ignore the prohibition of recruiting those under the required age will be deemed guilty under the law of misconduct and may be discharged. In Colombia's new criminal code presented in article 162, which was introduced in the year 2000, those who recruit children under eighteen years of age or allows them to participate directly or indirectly in the armed conflict faces a penalty of six to ten years' imprisonment.

In regards to civil wars, international humanitarian law prohibits armed forces from recruiting children under the age of fifteen or allowing them to take part in combat. The Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), ratified by all U.N. member states (including Columbia) except for the United States and Somalia, establishes fifteen as the minimum required age for military involvement. However, in all other aspects, the CRC defines a child as any person under the age of eighteen. The Optional Protocol to the Convention, which entered into force on February 12, 2002, corrected this inconsistency by prohibiting the military from recruiting any child under the age of eighteen.

When Colombia ratified the CRC in 1991, it proposed that eighteen, instead of fifteen, be the minimum age for military recruitment. By prohibiting even voluntary service for children less than eighteen years old, Colombia seemed to make strong efforts to comply with the requirements of the Optional Protocol, which it has signed, but has not yet ratified. Disturbingly, the use of child combatants is still quite prevalent in the country due to weak enforcement and monitoring strategies.

In Columbia’s “State Party Report”, it noted that in regards to children affected by the armed conflict, its government has given top priority to humanizing the conflict and to seeking humanitarian agreements with immediate results to free children from combat and to save them from becoming victims of war. To fulfill those goals, Columbia insists, a number of institutions involved in child welfare are helping to set up Vocational Care and Training Programs to improve educational development and to teach basic work skills. They have also implemented a Resettlement Program, which will also assist children under the age of eighteen that are detached from the conflict. The report goes on to include that special medical and psychological care has also been given to children injured by anti-personnel mines, those displaced by internal violence and victims of abduction.

Although the Columbian government has implemented such programs, accesses to them are not readily available to bring about significant change. The number of child combatants in the country still reaches estimates of an alarming 14,000. And although national and international laws as well as treaties are put in place, they are not strongly enforceable. And children continue to be negatively affected by internal conflict as their society continues to breakdown.

The issue of child combatants is completely ignored in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. And although Columbia has not ratified the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights or the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, it has ratified the American Convention of Human Rights on July 31, 1973. In the American Convention, the human rights issue at hand is not defined. However, disturbingly, in section 3b of article 6, the right that no one shall be required to take part in “forced or compulsory labor” excludes that of military and national service for one’s country.

There is no need for children to lend their services to fight in an adult war. If government officials, national citizens and international actors want to assist in this human rights issue, they should urge the Columbian government and its armed forces to put an end to all recruitment of children under the age of eighteen and to release the children from their ranks. Assistance can be given by promoting awareness or donating one’s time and finances to improve educational, vocational and medical programs.

In conclusion, I have discussed Columbia’s use of child combatants as a human rights issue. And how this issue is in direct violation of Columbia’s national laws, treaty obligations and customary international law. I have also described what the Columbian government says about its national law and practice regarding this human rights problem and how honest it is about its policies. I have additionally presented how this human right goes unnoticed by the Universal Declaration of human rights and the American Convention of human rights in which Columbia has ratified. And lastly, I have discussed what the government officials, national citizens and international actors should do to resolve this human rights issue.

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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The Chaos Theory Essay

Essay on Chaos Theory

Chaos is defined in the dictionary as turmoil, turbulence, primordial abyss, and undesired randomness. Scientists describe it as something extremely sensitive to initial conditions. Chaos also refers to the question of whether or not something can be predicted in long-term scenarios accurately or not.

I believe that the Chaos Theory is the base for all human behavior. This theory is most often used in conjunction with the formation of the universe and not human behavior. I will in the next few pages try to show you just how closely it relates to human behavior. I will begin with a short background of the theory, showing it’s base elements. Then I will conclude with my own hypothesis on why I feel that this theory best represents human behavior patterns.

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Determinism is the belief that every action is the result of preceding actions. Sir Isaac Newton use determinism for his Newtonian model of the universe. The model is often described as a game of pool. The player strikes the balls causing them to scatter random directions. In reality they move in deterministic patterns, each following their path caused by the preceding action.

Henri Poincarй was considered the “Father of Chaos Theory.” In his research he discover that a fixed three body system had a deterministic pattern. However, if a small change was made in the placement of a body it may lead to a radically different outcome than the original undisturbed system.

Chaotic systems are unstable. Two sets of nearly the same initial conditions will end up with two very separate final conditions. For example, if identical twin boys that had been raised in the same manner, came across a hornet’s nest. One may see the beauty of how the nest was constructed and may grow up to study insects for a living. The other boy may get stung by one of the hornets and may grow up to be a bug exterminator. The boys seeing the nest was a very small action in their life but can cause a great difference in its outcome.

The Chaos Theory is a new study when compared to other theory’s because of the complexity of the equations it takes to study it. Before computers, it could take years for a group of people to set up the equations to prove what one man and a computer can now do in minutes.

Now that I have gave some of the background of the Chaos Theory I will try to explain my own theory in why Chaos is the main background of human behavior. There are many working theories that are used in explaining human behavior. All theories have their pros and cons to why they are best to describe human behavior. My belief is that under all these theories whether they are environment related or genetic related, the base of all of them has to start with the Chaos theory.

No two people with meet the same two people, hear the same sounds, see the same things, and touch the same items, at the exact same time in their lives. This is the base of chaos.

I would like to discuss some examples of chaos in our lives and how it changes our behavior. Everyone can relate to the terrorist act on 09/11/2002. It was a terrible tragedy in all our lives. This chaotic act changed everyone’s lives forever. Besides the obvious changes there are smaller changes in our behavior. For example, before 9/11 everyone I know including myself, complained about delays at the airport. The baggage checks and waiting in line to get through the metal detectors were considered a nuisance. Now with all the extra security and delays, even the people who complained the most are saying they don’t mind the delays and are glad to have the security checks. This is a classic example of how chaos changes and molds human behavior.

Peer pressure is another classic example of how chaos molds human behavior. I was raised in a backwoods country setting. There were strict rules on behavior. You always answered with yes maam or yes sir, you never talked back to your mother, and you never cursed in the presence of lady. I try to follow these rules even today, but, with not much success. I fell into the trap of peer pressure. The kids around me as I grew up called these rules “Baby Rules.” I found myself wanting to prove to them I was not a baby. I began to curse at school and backtalk my parents. I knew this was wrong but I wanted to fit in with the crowd. Peer pressure shows how one chaotic thought can form a well organized social behavior. I want to point out that not all chaos is bad. Peer pressure can be a positive influence as well. My son Jacob is nine years old and is a Webelo in the cub scouts. It has been a great influence on his manners and his behavior. Not all pressure is from the kids around him. Jacob is in troop 322. Jacob’s great grandfather started this troop.

Jacob’s grandfather was a scout in it and became a scoutmaster. Jacob’s uncle and father were both scouts in it as well. This is a historical pressure that the other kids do not have. This shows how a small event, in the case the starting of a Boy Scout troop, can change the behavior of an entire family lineage.

I believe that some people think chaos is the weakness in our society. Some people label chaos as only evil in nature. They claim this as a reason why we have people with such chaotic behavior as Charles Manson and Jeffrey Dahmer. They are correct in my opinion to a point. What some of these people don’t realize is that chaos is not good or evil. It is a simple change in your life, positive or negative, that leads you toward a new future. Chaos is also why we have Albert Einstein and Sir Isaac Newton.

Some people will argue that it is a genetic reason for these famous people. Some will say it is free will that caused Einstein to strive in his career. Some will say it is environment that caused Henry Ford to build his car. But what caused this genetic sequence to happen? Why doesn’t everyone in Mozart’s family have the ability to compose music? What caused Einstein’s free will to move toward theories instead of toward being a car mechanic? Why didn’t everyone in Florence Nightingale’s neighborhood become a nurse? The one theory that can explain every question is the Chaos theory.

In researching human behavior I have read several different theories. With each theory I tried to think of a realistic scenario that would disprove that this theory would work for every humans behavior. In most cases the research had the pros and cons of the theory so I was able to disprove that it would work for everyone. The reason why I believe the Chaos theory best describes human behavior is that it does work for every human being.

It of course can be disproved through mathematics, but not in real life. You must remember that it can be proved through mathematics that a bumblebee cannot fly but in real life it seems to do rather well.

I hope I have explained this theory so that you can see the reasons behind my choice for Chaos as the best theory to describe human behavior. I believe in my opinion that Chaos is the beginning of all behavior. Once that chaotic moment has then it may be guided by other theories such as genetics, or free will.

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Essay on Dams

Essay on Effects of Dams on Our Enviornment

What is a dam? A dam is defined as any obstruction, wall or embankment, constructed for the purpose of storing water. Dams can be constructed of earth, concrete, wood or rock. Dams can provide many benefits such as water supply, flood control, hydroelectric power, fishing and recreation. However, dams can also be a great threat to the safety and well being of downstream property and people if they are not properly constructed or maintained.

Dams’ primary reason of being built is to provide water for irrigation and hydropower. Although their efficiency if nowhere near as high as most would think. They only supply about 4% of our region’s low priced electric power. It makes one think is 4% of our low priced electric power more important than the environment the dam kills and even the living species within this environment? (2)

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There are many disadvantages to building dams. Generally dams:
  • deplete natural settings
  • flood the spawning grounds of fish
  • inhibit the seasonal migration of fish
  • threaten and endanger some species of fish and mussels
  • flood archaeological sites or ancestral burial grounds
  • can foster diseases if unkempt (6)
Dams cause the deaths of many young fishes, especially salmon migrating downstream after hatching. These youngsters are susceptible to predators and nitrogen gas bubble disease caused by the dam. This in turn makes it much harder for salmon to reproduce, keeping the population in good standing. Dams can easily reduce the size of the salmon community. (1)

Not only do they affect animals but they can affect us as well. They can displace us when they are built, forcing us to move from our homes. Dams can also affect our beaches, which many enjoy; by trapping the sediment we are starving the beaches of a sediment source.

An example of a particular dam and it affects would be the Cougar Dam on the McKenzie River. About a year ago the dam was undergoing a fix up, involving lowering the level of water in the reservoir. For months the river had become a muddy mess. It affected everybody, specifically those who would normally take advantage of the trout fishing season. Normally people would be reeling in 30 to 40 trout a day but many had to travel to different rivers to fish. Grocery store owners experienced a decline in sales, close to $10,000 in one month. (5)

Not only did this affect the people but the water now flowing into the river is eroding the banks, cutting through the mud. The fish and other wildlife weren’t directly harmed, but they may be affected by the affect it has on the bugs. The bugs are dying which the fish rely on during the winter, which will in turn kill the fish. (5)

Another example of how dams affect the environment around it is the in the Snake River. Wild Salmon have been returning to the river less and less each year.

Breaching the dam has become an option. Breaching the dams would restore endangered wild salmon, return traditional sites and fisheries to Indian tribes and improve water quality. Many argue that the breaching of dams will result in an enormous loss in jobs. Yes, jobs will be lost but not forever. Only 711 jobs would be lost within Washington, Oregon and Idaho (where the Snake Dams are located). Statistically half will find replacement jobs in less than eight week. The consequences may look dreadful but they are short-lived. (2)

Breaching the dam will result in a brighter future for generations to come to enjoy the river and the salmon and the life it brings back to the Snake River.

Another example of an insufficient hydroelectric dam would be in Hawaii. Hydropower depends on a reliable flow of water to produce electricity. In Hawaii the flow is never constant therefore the efficiency of the dam would fluctuate. Hawaiians worry that the dams will flood environmentally sensitive areas and historic sites. They also fear that the reduction of the amount of water flowing downstream will result in damage of plants and animals that live in and around the stream. These fears are understandable and inevitable for these Hawaiians. (3)

Dams are made for all the right reasons, to better mankind, to help us become a more energy efficient nation. Harming species, destroying land, and killing fish with the turbines are just risks that we must take. No. I refuse to believe that killing wildlife and destroying our environment is necessary for our survival. Conserving our environment and helping nature’s children is what we need for survival. Our environment is our home, no one wants to see a huge cement dam where there used to be trees and animals living together. If dams weren’t so destructive then there would be a lot more then there are. Dams are obviously bad or else it wouldn’t be such a controversial issue. We must save our fish and our river banks and stop building dams.

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Monday, October 25, 2010

Essay on Southern California

Essay on Southern California

Southern California is an unique and unusual region. It is a perfect place to live. Southern California is different than any other state in America. It has fantastic weather much like the Mediterranean. In fact, Southern California's weather is better. Unlike the Mediterranean coast, Southern California has no sultry summer air, no mosquito-ridden malarial marshes, no mistral winds. A freak of nature - a cool and semi-moist desert - Southern California is climatically insulated, shut off from the rest of the continent.

Even though Southern California's weather seems to be monotonous, there are sharp contrasts. Mornings are cool with dense fog, but the afternoons are hot and clear. The grass on the hills change overnight from green to brown when it rains. In some places we can see both "giant trees" and "bare slopes" or "burnt sand" and "riotous flowers" at the same time. I remember when I went to the mountains for a biology field trip, I was shocked by what I saw. The east side of the mountain was dry, sandy, and brown, but the west side of the mountain was moist and full of green plants. I have never seen this kind of view anywhere but Southern California.

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Southern California is the only place in the U.S. with its own climate. It has five seasons: two springs, two summers and a season of rain, unlike other places where there are four different seasons: spring, summer, fall and winter.

The weather is California's only resource. In Southern California, there are no raw materials, such as good soil, natural harbors, lumber forest, or mineral resources. The only natural resources we have are the sky, air, ocean breezes and a little rain. Almost every lake I know in Southern California is man-made, which I was surprise and to learn. The climate of Southern California is a salable commodity. It can be labled, priced and marketed. It is easy to predict the weather because it is so consistent that it is not something that you can talk about, complain about or guess about. It is the weather which caused Southern California's unparalleled growth. It is one of the only places to grow so much with so few natural resources. It is an artificial region. People have brought in or built what nature didn't provide. It is because the people of Southern California have worked so hard to make Southern California such a successful region, and it was the weather that made those people want to work so hard to make Southern California a place worth living in.

When I first came to Southern California I was very surprised. Everything in this state was so wonderful and perfect. In Taiwan, which is my native country, the weather is bad, and the streets are full of cars, houses, nosie, and air pollution. It is very uncomfortable to live there because everything is so small, dirty, and congested. After I came here I started wondering why, if Taiwan has a lot of natural resources such as natural harbors, good soil, forests, minerals and lakes, are our living conditions so much worse? I think that the reason the lifestyles are so different is that everyone has to learn to live with what's around them. As I had mentioned before we do not have fantastic weather like Southern California in my native country. During the summer the weather in my country is very hot and humid. It does not cool down in the evening or morning like in Southern California. We often have typhoons and rains, which typhoons destroy our houses, crops, billboards, and even people.

In Southern California it is possible to visit two very different places in one day. In Taiwan there is only one view, no matter where you go. If you want to see different scenery, it is necessary to drive all day to find it. There was once where I went to Palm Spring with two of my good friends. On the way to Palm Spring, we saw many very different regions and plants. The first region we saw was desert, which is intensely dry and hot. When I looked through the window the only plants that I saw were cactus. It seemed incredibly boring and ugly, and I thought that if our car broke down there, we certainly would die, because there were no houses in the area and nobody to help us. After we drove about ninety minutes, I started to see trees around us, such as maples, oaks, and hickories. The scenery in this region was prettier and the weather was not as hot as the desert. All we saw were green plants and the air felt much more comfortable. I hope one day I can live in an area like that. When we were close to Palm Springs, I started to see pines, spruce and other tall trees. We took the tram up into the mountains, and there was snow all over the trees and ground. It was so beautiful, I could not wait to touch the snow. After we arrived, the first thing I did was to grab the snow and feel it. The snow was cold but soft. I had an urge to eat the snow but I could not, because people would laugh at me. When it was time to go home, we decided to have dinner together and watch the sunset. Our favorite place to watch the sunset however is Laguna Beach, so we went to Laguna Beach for dinner. When we arrived at Laguna Beach it was about 4:30, and the sun was dropping into the ocean. All the colors of the sun shimmering on the water were so beautiful and so romantic.

Southern California is the land of the "sun-down sea," where the sun suddenly plummets into the ocean, disappearing "like a lost and bloody cause." That day, I really had fun. I only went two different places but it seemed like I had been to many. I saw many different landscapes in one day. This would not have been possible anywhere but Southern California, even though it was spring, it felt like winter in the mountain and summer in the desert and at the beach. I could go up to the mountains to play in the snow and go down to the beach for dinner and watch the sunset in one day. Those things are what make Southern California so special and unique.

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Sunday, October 24, 2010

Critical Essay on Dover Beach

Essay on Dover Beach

Before we can discuss Matthew Arnold’s "Dover Beach", a brief biography of Arnold will help our understanding of the poem. Matthew Arnold had intentions of marrying Fancy Lucy Wightman, despite the fact that her father disapproved. Wightman’s father was vocal in his objections to the marriage, insisting the two end their romance and cancel their wedding plans (Furr 75). Arnold wrote "Dover Beach", drawing from his own experience as a man with a lost love. The beauty and tranquility contrasts with the under current of something lost. Arnold presents the sea as a changing symbol of calmness, sadness, and faith to express his emotions.

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In the beginning of "Dover Beach" Arnold describes a night in which the gleam of the moonlight shimmers across the bay. The sea symbolizes being peaceful and calm. The imagery Arnold has put in our minds is all of beautiful scenery. He uses imagery to create the mood so that the point he is trying to portray can be better understood.

The sea changes to a symbol of sadness as the poem progresses. Arnold’s mind is set in the tone of human misery. This is shown through the contrast of the actions of the moon, which "lies fair" (2) to that of the pebbles and waves he refers to now that angrily pound the beach. He mentions that the shore brings the "eternal note of sadness in". Arnold’s background and culture leads him to refer to the classical Greek writer of Tradegy's, Sophocles. He is reminded of his own time and can hear the human misery that surrounds him through the sea.

Last, the sea becomes a symbol of faith. Arnold shows that faith has died when he refers to the once full, but now receding tide and what he calls the "Sea of Faith"(20). The key word is once because it implies that he used to look at the sea in a different way (in the first stanza, for example, the sea was peaceful) than what he does now(which is as lost faith). In the last stanza he is speaking directly to his love. He presents the idea that he and his love must comfort and remain faithful to one another because each other is all they really have. In reality he is expressing that nothing is certain, because when there is darkness there is light and when there is sadness there is happiness. In a world barren on faith, only fidelity and love lend a man some kind of support and meaning in life.

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Saturday, October 23, 2010

Essay on Wayne Johnson

Essay on Wayne Johnson

In the article Make no Mistake about it, Wayne Johnson tries to point out the shocking things California school administration has done. In the article, Johnson uses fallacies and biased language to get his point across.

Wayne Johnson has been a valuable member to the California Teacher Association (CTA). During his forty years as an educator in California, he has been elected to the presidency of UTLA and CTA. Johnson began his teaching career at Hamilton High School, teaching social study in 1962 (Belcher).

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Education has to be the hardest field to work in for the amount of money that is given to them. Most teachers and administrators work forty hours plus a week, ten to eleven months a year. Educational administrators held 453,000 jobs in the year 2000. About nine out of ten administrators worked in primary, secondary, and college universities (educational administrations).

Johnson uses biased language. He states, "It is time to present a small roundup of outrageous administrative actions in California schools" The word "outrageous" creates a negative bias toward school administrations. Only a few schools qualified under the description бзoutrageous." In fact, most schools in California worked just like any other schools in other states.

Johnson commits the red-herring fallacy when he says, "This is taking lockstep teaching into the realm of science fiction or current history. I suspect that teachers in China also do pretty much the same thing." Johnson brings in irrelevant information. He mentions China out of nowhere in a school administrative essay, while China has nothing to do with school administration in California.

Johnson commits a non-sequitur fallacy. He writes, "In Burney, a first-year teacher faced a continuation class with 29 students. The principal, who supervised only four teachers, was not assigned to help this new teacher by taking some of the students to teach." It does not follow logically that the principal has to take some students to teach just because too many kids are in a class. Principals supervise teachers, not teach students. When the classroom becomes overcrowded, the principal should not teach either.

Johnson also commits another non-sequitur fallacy when he states, "A teacher and track coach in Ventura was fired from his coaching job by a new principal. What distinguishes this action is the fact that the year he was fired he was voted "Coach of the Year" in Ventura County." It does not follow logically that the coach lost his job just because he became the coach of the year. The district maybe fired him for other reasons such as budget deficit, child molestation, bribery, or even drunk driving.

California school administrators may do irrational things every now and then, but they keep the educational system running. Johnson feels indignant toward few incidents, but overall, California school administrators are people just like us.

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Essay on Importance of Formative Assessment

Essay on Formative Assessment

Ah, yes, assessment. Well, between the two options, I think that formative assessment seems to be the most logical and attractive for the rookie teacher. A formative assessment is used during and throughout the course of study as an informal “diagnosis” or “monitor” of the instructional flow. Unlike summative assessment, there is little emphasis on scores or grades. It seems to me that formative assessment is mainly used to foster the teacher’s ability to strategize according to the differentiated needs of each classroom. It can assess learning in cognitive, affective and psychomotor domains. It also requires seven different steps: Identify the teaching objective, write a single assessable question, select an informal feedback strategy, decide how to introduce the strategy, apply the strategy, analyze and interpret the feedback, and respond to the results. An example of this would be executing the “Half-Minute Note Card” strategy: giving students a 1/2 minute to write the most important thing they learned in class. On the contrary, you could also ask them to write about what was the “muddiest” point of the lesson and discuss their responses in a group format.

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Summative assessment, on the other hand, is a much more formal strategy that requires more preparation, covers more content, must be valid, take longer for students to complete, and are considered high-stakes due to the grade attached to them. Summative assessments can either be commercially or teacher constructed. A prime example of a summative assessment is a portfolio (which would be graded by a more rigid rubric).

Ah, yes, assessment. Well, between the two options, I think that formative assessment seems to be the most logical and attractive for the rookie teacher. A formative assessment is used during and throughout the course of study as an informal “diagnosis” or “monitor” of the instructional flow. Unlike summative assessment, there is little emphasis on scores or grades. It seems to me that formative assessment is mainly used to foster the teacher’s ability to strategize according to the differentiated needs of each classroom. It can assess learning in cognitive, affective and psychomotor domains. It also requires seven different steps: Identify the teaching objective, write a single assessable question, select an informal feedback strategy, decide how to introduce the strategy, apply the strategy, analyze and interpret the feedback, and respond to the results. An example of this would be executing the “Half-Minute Note Card” strategy: giving students a 1/2 minute to write the most important thing they learned in class. On the contrary, you could also ask them to write about what was the “muddiest” point of the lesson and discuss their responses in a group format.

Summative assessment, on the other hand, is a much more formal strategy that requires more preparation, covers more content, must be valid, take longer for students to complete, and are considered high-stakes due to the grade attached to them. Summative assessments can either be commercially or teacher constructed. A prime example of a summative assessment is a portfolio (which would be graded by a more rigid rubric).

Ah, yes, assessment. Well, between the two options, I think that formative assessment seems to be the most logical and attractive for the rookie teacher. A formative assessment is used during and throughout the course of study as an informal “diagnosis” or “monitor” of the instructional flow. Unlike summative assessment, there is little emphasis on scores or grades. It seems to me that formative assessment is mainly used to foster the teacher’s ability to strategize according to the differentiated needs of each classroom. It can assess learning in cognitive, affective and psychomotor domains. It also requires seven different steps: Identify the teaching objective, write a single assessable question, select an informal feedback strategy, decide how to introduce the strategy, apply the strategy, analyze and interpret the feedback, and respond to the results. An example of this would be executing the “Half-Minute Note Card” strategy: giving students a 1/2 minute to write the most important thing they learned in class. On the contrary, you could also ask them to write about what was the “muddiest” point of the lesson and discuss their responses in a group format.

Summative assessment, on the other hand, is a much more formal strategy that requires more preparation, covers more content, must be valid, take longer for students to complete, and are considered high-stakes due to the grade attached to them. Summative assessments can either be commercially or teacher constructed. A prime example of a summative assessment is a portfolio (which would be graded by a more rigid rubric).

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Friday, October 22, 2010

Essay on Bhopal Gas Tragedy

Essay on Bhopal Gas Tragedy

In December of 1984, an accidental gas leak at the Union Carbide facility in Bhopal India caused a large number of deaths and an even larger number of injuries. (Reports on the exact number of deaths range from 3,800 to 8,000 people.) This accident not only affected the people and the physical environment at the time of the incident, but it is still having a negative effect on the area today. This past event now involves the Dow family of companies due to their merger with Union Carbide in February of 2001. When this merger took place, it caused Dow Chemicals to inherit not only Union Carbides assets, but its liabilities as well.

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From a corporate point of view this accident should be considered a liability, and could be considered a public relations nightmare. Although all legal actions and obligations have been fulfilled, the fact that this incident has ongoing negative impact places Dow Chemical in an unenviable position. Currently, assessments of the feasibility of an area environmental clean up are being considered, but this step will likely be viewed as too little to late. The people directly affected by the gas leak are also seeking additional reparations, but the amount in which Dow should be held responsible is in question. This incident has taken any positive effects of the globalization of these companies and reduced them to a pool of negatives. Any member of the effected society must view this situation as the “wealthy American Corporation” taking advantage of the economically challenged city of Bhopal India and its citizens. This feeling is undoubtedly furthered by the fact that nearly all of the individuals in executive positions directly involved with this incident are no longer working for Union Carbide or Dow Chemicals. Again, the rich corporate executives have quit their jobs and have dissolved into anonymity, wealth intact, and accountability withstanding.

Recently, protests by survivors of the “gas” incident have resulted in legal action being taken by Dow Chemicals. The lawsuit facing the protestors (a group of female survivors) is based on the claim of “loss of work due to disruption” of Dow employees and is currently ongoing. This lawsuit is facing a greater legal adversary however in the form of multiple charges filed against Dow and its subsidiary Union Carbide. These charges have been filed over the past five years and include violations of international human rights laws, environmental laws, and international criminal laws, as well as charges directly against Warren Anderson by the Indian courts.

The people affected by this accident have not been compensated in a way that could be considered fair. Although the courts acted on the publics behalf during the trial in 1989, the actual individual compensation for this accident amounts to only $300 to $500 per victim. Is this adequate compensation for the destruction of life, a society, and the environment? Most people in the same situation, given the same set of circumstances would agree that this is not fair. This incident could be considered a good example of globalization within the corporate world gone wrong. When the lives, and society of a set of people become less important than the institution or corporation they are working for, then the system of corporate globalization has gone too far.

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Thursday, October 21, 2010

Essay on Bangladesh

It seems that Bangladesh is in dire straits now following this unimaginable disaster. All roads have been flooded, the water supply is tainted, and food is becoming scarce. To help ease the suffering it is up to us, the government to try to enlist help for the relief efforts. Seeing as our nation lacks adequate funds to solve this problem by ourselves, we need to appeal to our neighbors and the major world powers.

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This flood is a disaster of gigantic proportions and how well we recover from it will have a great bearing on our nation’s future. If we are able to shake off this misfortune quickly it will be a sign that our country is stable and strong, however if these problems linger, they could contribute to a collapse in the future. With this in mind, it is clear that to help us in the long run we must find a way to solve the problem and to prevent it from recurring. Only when the floodwaters are lowered can we pick up the pieces and look towards rebuilding our cities and our economy. It is our hope that, with foreign aid, we can quickly get working on rebuilding Bangladesh and working towards eliminating the disease and poverty that have stricken the nation. If we cannot stop the floodwaters evacuations may be necessary in order to allow our citizens to begin new lives and to work towards helping our nation recover.

What has happened is beyond a tragedy, it is now a full-blown catastrophe that threatens to destroy Bangladesh. We can recover, but the process will require the full effort of the entire population and then some. It will not be easy, but working together it can be done.

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