Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Unscramble INJUOR

Rearrange the order of the letters to form a word.  What word is this?


Scroll down below for the answer



Monday, March 28, 2016

Writing Exercise: The Judge Who Went Viral for Unusual Punishments

This judge went viral for his unusual punishments.

In this video, the judge provided creative punishment instead of jail time for: the girl who didn't pay her cab fare, the man who solicited a prostitute, the teenager who stole from a pornography video shop,...

Freewriting Exercise
Write two or more paragraphs in response to the following:
What do you think about the judge providing these unusual punishments instead of jail time?  Do you think they are good ideas?  Please explain.  For the cases in the video, can you think of better punishments than the ones the judge provided?  Describe and explain your ideas for punishments in these cases.  Can you think of circumstances (or types of cases) where these alternative punishments would not work and jail time should be required?  Describe such circumstances where jail time should be required and explain why.

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Thursday, March 17, 2016

Never Too Old to Live Your Dream (Part 1)

Dan Clark writes about his experience in college when he met Rose, an elderly student.  Rose’s vibrant personality along with her wisdom did not only appeal to Clark, but she was magnetically attracting attention everywhere on campus. Clark and the other students learned some very important life lessons from Rose such as the following

“If you are nineteen years old and lie in bed for one full year and don’t do one productive thing, you will [just] turn twenty years old.  If I am eight-seven years old and stay in bed for a year and never do anything I will turn eighty-eight.”  This is how you would become more and more miserable.  

Just turning one year older doesn’t do anything.  It’s when you change for the better having progress in some area; that’s what you need to do.  If you just turn one year older year after year, with no improvement, no progress, and nothing to show for that year, you will not just be one year older, but you will be a little bit more miserable.  If that’s the case year after year, the misery will multiply and you will end up a lot more miserable...  

For the entire article on what Dan Clark and other students learned from Rose, go to -

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Monday, March 14, 2016

Free ACT Reading Workshops at L219

Those of you who have not passed the ACT Reading Exam already know that you cannot go on to take many of your classes until you pass this exam.  You also already know that the longer you go on not passing it, the more tuition money and financial aid money you would be using up (not to mention time).

We want to help you. FREE ACT Reading Workshops are now available at L219. You may still sign up for them.  Sign up before it’s too late. 

These workshops are small group workshops of two to three students. Therefore, you will receive more focused attention than you do in your English class (of fifteen to twenty students).

For now, only Shu's workshops are endorsed here as he is the only one in L219 who incorporates the SpirFit educational approach.  On this website, I cannot endorse other workshop instructors unless they are trained in the SpirFit educational approach.

This approach effectively addresses your individual needs, whatever your English level.  Although students in the same workshop may be at very different levels, the SpirFit educational approach is able to effectively address each student's needs by incorporating innovative educational methods of recent years brought about by game changers from Silicon Valley, MIT, and Harvard.  In addition, the SpirFit educational approach includes pedagogy or teaching methodology encouraged by the English department, CAWS, CUNY Start, and others.  The SpirFit teaching approach also includes unconventional methods from other professions and methods supported by science.

Current KCC students this semester, KCC Continuing Education students, CLIP students, and CUNY Start students are all eligible for these FREE workshops at L219.  Since you have already paid for these workshops with your tuition, why not make use of them! 

If you are not a student at KCC, but you need help with the ACT Reading exam, email me at and I'll see what I can do.
Shu's Workshops (ACT Reading Workshops)
Sign-up Location:  L219 at Kingsborough Community College

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Saturday, March 12, 2016

NYTimes Article of the Day (in English and Chinese): U.S. Extends Stay for Some Foreign Graduates

Here's our New York Times article pick of the day, in English and Chinese.  (For Chinese students, read the English version twice before reading the Chinese version.)

The article is about the United States' new rules in extending the stay of foreigners after graduating from an accredited university in the United States.

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Friday, March 11, 2016

Writing Practice: We Are What We Repeatedly Do

Directions:  Consider carefully the following statement(s) and the assignment below it.

            “We are what we repeatedly do.  Excellence then is not an act, but a habit [or a set of habits].”

Assignment:  What do you think of the view that excellence or success results from our good habits day in and day out?  For example, can you get in shape (or become fit) by exercising just once?  Can you obtain a university degree by studying only for one day?   In an essay, support your position by discussing an example (or examples) from literature, science, and technology, the arts, current events, or your own experience or observations.

SAT Writing Prompt, SAT Essay

Thursday, March 10, 2016

CATW Practice - 3D Imaging May Improve Surgery and Medicine

Begin by reading the passage below.

3D Technology May Improve Medicine

3D imaging technology adopted from other industries (such as gaming and entertainment) is becoming a real game changer in medicine.  The new 3D tools import MRI or CT scans and render these images into virtual 3D images, allowing the surgeons to plan in great detail before cutting open the patient.  

Dr. James Chandler and Dr. Orin Bloch, neurosurgeons at Northwestern University, have started using such 3D endoscopic systems to more precisely remove brain tumors in patients.  The 3D technology allows the surgeon to see more vividly, enabling them to remove all traces of the tumor and less non-cancerous tissue.  The precision allows for less cutting and therefore, a speedier recovery for the patient after surgery.  More importantly, the added precision is crucial in lowering the known risks in brain surgery, such as vision loss and coma.

For breast cancer patients, 3D imaging technology is beginning to improve detection and post-surgery outcome.  With traditional 2D mammogram, tumors in hidden shadows are often undetected.  “The problem of overlapping shadows has confounded breast cancer screening because mammograms don’t show cancers that are hidden by overlapping tissue,” says Dr. Kyle Myers, Director of FDA’s Division of Imaging, Diagnostics, and Software Reliability.  The newer 3D technologies would enable the doctors to see the tumors in these hidden areas. 

Even without expensive 3D imaging systems, some tech savvy doctors are exploring the use of consumer 3D technology to improve surgery outcomes.  Take the case of a pediatric cardiologist, Dr. Redmond Burke of Nicklaus Children’s Hospital, who used Google Cardboard to successfully operate on Teegan Lexcen, a baby with an abnormal heart.  Dr. Burke used an app called Sketchfab to render the baby’s CT scans into 3D visuals on the iPhone.  With the iPhone and Google Cardboard, he visualized the surgery in virtual reality.  “I think about heart repairs in three dimensions,” said Dr. Burke.  That surely can be expedited by 3D technology.  

Other doctors had already concluded that Teegan was inoperable but 3D enabled Dr. Burke to successfully operate on Teegan by allowing him to plan out every incision and every step of the surgery in 3D.  This lessened the time the infant stayed cut opened and it was crucial because the more time spent in heart surgery for a baby, the higher the chances of heart damage.

Despite the many reported cases of 3D technology producing favorable results, more studies still need to be done to quantitatively confirm improved surgery results from the implementation of 3D technology.  However, it all looks very promising from what we’ve seen so far.

Adapted from article by Amadeo Constanzo,, February 23, 2016.  You may freely post and distribute this article if and only if you include this statement with the above link to the original article.  More CATW practices and lessons are available at 

Writing Directions
Read the passage above and write an essay responding to the ideas it presents.  In your essay, be sure to summarize the passage in your own words, stating the author’s most important ideas. Develop your essay by identifying one idea in the passage that you feel is especially significant, and explain its significance. Support your claims with evidence or examples drawn from what you have read, learned in school, and/or personally experienced.

Remember to review your essay and make any changes or corrections that will help your reader follow your thinking.  You will have 90 minutes to complete your essay.

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