domingo, 26 de março de 2017

A natureza das nuvens

Se um professor pedisse a uma criança para desenhar nuvens em um céu azul, dificilmente o mesmo professor aceitaria tal desenho. Nuvens não são assim!, diria ele. A natureza faz o que quer... como quer... e quando quer. Nuvem tem de seguir a sua natureza; nuvem tem de ser nuvem! Nós apenas observamos, respeitamos e refletimos.
Em algum momento da manhã de 23 de março de 2017... sob o céu de Pirituba.

Textos para Provas Integrada e Maxi de Inglês - Março - 3º Médio

Ciggies in display ban plan

SHOPKEEPERS could be banned from displaying cigarettes under plans being considered by the Government.
   The Department of Health said it is launching a consultation later this spring to look at ways to stop kids smoking.
   In a bid to cut the number of smokers and prevent children from taking up the habit, ministers have drawn up proposals including a bar on displaying tobacco products and the removal of vending machines from pubs.
   Measures that make it easier to sell nicotine replacement gums and patches are also on the table.
   The proposals follow on from the introduction of the ban on smoking in public places last July.
   According to the Department of Health, the strategy - coupled with the wider smoke free legislation - will save hundreds of lives.
   Someone who starts smoking aged 15 is three times more likely to die of cancer due to smoking than someone who starts in their late twenties, the department said.
   Public Health Minister Dawn Primarolo said: "Children who smoke are putting their lives at risk and are more likely to die of cancer than people who start smoking later.
   "It's vital we get across the message to children that smoking is bad. If that means stripping out vending machines or removing cigarettes from behind the counter, I'm willing to do that."

   According to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics, the proportion of adults who now smoke has dropped by 2 per cent from 24 per cent to 22 per cent.


Computers OK? Not in Silicon Valley.
A school plugs into low-tech learning.

   The chief technology officer of eBay sends his children to a nine-classroom school in Los Altos, California. So do employees of Silicon Valley giants like Google, Apple, Yahoo and Hewlett-Packard.
   But the school's chief teaching tools are anything but high-tech: pens and paper, knitting needles and, occasionally, mud. Not a computer to be found. They are not allowed in the classroom, and the school even frowns on their use at home.
   Schools across the US have rushed to supply their classrooms with computers, and many policymakers say it is foolish to do otherwise. But the contrarian point of view can be found at the epicentre of the tech economy, where some parents and educators have a message: computers and schools don't mix.
   This is the Waldorf School of the Peninsula, one of about 160 Waldorf schools in the country that subscribe to a teaching philosophy focused on physical activity and learning through creative, hands-on tasks. They are the equivalent of the Steiner schools in Australia. Those who endorse this approach say computers inhibit creative thinking, movement, human interaction and attention spans.
   The Waldorf method is nearly a century old, but its foothold here among the digerati puts into sharp relief an intensifying debate about the role of computers in education.
   ''I fundamentally reject the notion you need technology aids in grammar school,'' said Alan Eagle, 50, whose daughter, Andie, is one of the 196 children at the Waldorf primary school; his son William, 13, is at the nearby high school. ''The idea that an app on an iPad can better teach my kids to read or do arithmetic - that's ridiculous.''
   Eagle knows a bit about technology. He holds a computer science degree and works in executive communications at Google. But he says his daughter, a fifth grader, ''doesn't know how to use Google'' and his son is just learning. (Starting in eighth grade, the school endorses the limited use of gadgets.)
   Three-quarters of the students here have parents with a strong high-tech connection. Eagle, like other parents, sees no contradiction. Technology, he says, has its time and place. ''If I worked at Miramax and made good, artsy, rated-R movies, I wouldn't want my kids to see them until they were 17.''
   While other schools in the region brag about their wired classrooms, the Waldorf school embraces a simple, retro look: blackboards with colourful chalk, bookshelves with encyclopaedias, wooden desks filled with workbooks and pencils.
   On a recent Tuesday, Andie Eagle and her fifth-grade classmates refreshed their knitting skills, making fabric swatches. It's an activity the school says helps develop problem-solving, patterning, math skills and coordination. The long-term goal: making socks.
   Some education experts say the push to equip classrooms with computers is unwarranted because studies do not clearly show that this leads to better test scores or other measurable gains.
   Is learning through cake fractions and knitting any better? The Waldorf advocates make it tough to compare, partly because as private schools, they administer no standardized tests in elementary grades.
   And where advocates for stocking classrooms with technology say children need computer time to compete in the modern world, Waldorf parents counter: what's the rush, given how easy it is to pick up those skills?

   ''At Google and all these places, we make technology as brain-dead easy to use as possible. There's no reason why kids can't figure it out when they get older.''

Texto para Provas Integrada e Maxi de Inglês - Março - 2º Médio

Courtney Stodden Must Be Studying Tabloids and Reality Shows Really Hard

   Teen bride Courtney Stodden must have been studying the tabloids and reality shows in order to learn the best way to get attention because some of her recent behaviour seems rather familiar.
   Take the way she first made headlines, for example. Courtney appears to be a "Girls Next Door" fan judging from her bleach blonde hair and love of skimpy clothing, so maybe she was trying to one-up Hugh Hefner's former flame Crystal Harris.
   The 25-year-old reality show star was set to wed 85-year-old Hef earlier this year, and news of their nuptials definitely got plenty of tabloid attention. This could be where 16-year-old Courtney got the idea to wed 51-year-old "Lost" actor Doug Hutchison, but of course she had to actually go through with the wedding to get the optimum amount of publicity out of her revolting relationship.
   And perhaps she's learned a lot about how to use social media to get her face out there from LeAnn Rimes. The country star seems to get the most attention these days for tweeting and posting sexy photos of herself, something that Courtney has already become a pro at. However, some of LeAnn's bikini pics with Eddie Cibrian caused such a backlash that she temporarily quit Twitter.
    Courtney faced a similar issue over her sexy photos on Facebook, but she was actually kicked off the site for seemingly being too hot for the web to handle. The move got her plenty of attention, but it proved to be a simple mistake -- her account was quickly reinstated.
   So watch out, Doug -- if Courtney is taking cues from LeAnn, it might only be a matter of time before she cheats on you with a married man.
   So what's next for Courtney and Doug? Of course they're trying to get their own reality show, but Court doesn't want it to be "Teen Mom" -- she's waiting a few years to get pregnant. But when she does, she could always give birth to a ton of kids so that she can get her own TLC show. Or maybe Doug could become a polygamist in order to really make people dislike him.
   Whatever they do, one thing is for certain -- Courtney won't be the last girl who has grown up around reality shows and internet tabloid stories to find an outrageous way to gain fame (you don't have to look any further than Justin Bieber's alleged baby mama Mariah Yeater to see that).


Textos para Provas Integrada e Maxi de Inglês - Março - 1º Médio

by Tim Jonze

   The Irish boyband are calling it a day after 20 top five hits, but are planning a farewell arena tour and album.
   Perhaps terrified at the prospect of having to compete for critical attention with the Stone Roses, Westlife have decided to call it a day.
   The Irish boyband, which was formed in 1998 and has inflicted more than 20 top five hits on the general public since then, will no longer be releasing records as relentlessly creative, not to mention downright influential, as Unbreakable, Fool Again and Flying Without Wings. We must, however, keep our champagne corked for now – the band are threatening a farewell arena tour and greatest hits album before they are finally on their way.
   Westlife have sold more than 40m albums during their career and the tour will be a chance for their fans to hear some of those 14 No 1 hits nobody can quite recall the name of for one last time. After that, the foursome, which comprises Nicky Byrne, 33, Shane Filan, 32, Mark Feehily, 31, and Kian Egan, 31, have promised to explore "new ventures". Whether this means a sonic exploration along the fringes of underground electronic or just some charity work and crap solo albums remains to be seen.
   Unfortunately for those of us trying to spin a news story out of this event, there are no reported fights, affairs or even creative differences to attribute the split to. Rather, it seems their parting is "amicable" and quite possibly based around the fact they can't believe they're still getting away with this rubbish after 14 years so best quit while they're ahead.
   In a statement the group said: "Over the years Westlife has become so much more to us than just a band. Westlife are a family."
   Signs that all was not well in the Westlife camp came when the band split with their label boss, Simon Cowell, earlier this year. Byrne said at the time: "We signed to Simon back in 1998 and he was brilliant, but then came the development of X Factor and American Idol. Simon became famous himself and his interests went that way rather than on Westlife. We almost felt a little bit unloved with Simon Cowell, if I was to be honest."
   A band source reportedly told the Sun: "There's no bad blood in the band, they're still great pals. But all good things come to an end and they are all keen to do their own thing. It's not something they have done lightly as they are still at the top of their game. They could carry on making albums into their old age the way their career has gone, but none of them want to do that."
   Let's be thankful for small mercies. Until the 2016 reunion tour, that is.



   A father had a family of sons who were always fighting. He had no luck trying to stop their arguments with words, so he decided to teach them a lesson. He told his sons to bring him a bunch of sticks. He took the sticks and gave them to his eldest son and asked him to break them. The eldest son tried with all his strength but was not able to do it. The other sons tried and were also unsuccessful. The father then separated the sticks and put one into each son's hand. He asked his sons again to try and break the sticks. They broke them easily. The father said, "My sons, if you are of one mind, and unite to assist each other, you will be like these sticks together; but if you are divided among yourselves, you will be broken as easily as a single stick."

Minha Nina partiu!

Há uma semana, em 17 de maio, por volta das 11h da manhã, "A Luz de Minha Casa" se apagou de um modo inesperado. Um dia brinc...