Awesome Adjective: Typical

Meaning: Regular, usual, common.

Examples:

It was a typical weekend in the summer for me: I went to the beach and went out to eat with friends, as usual.

It’s hard for me to describe a typical day at work because every day is different.

They had a typical Thanksgiving dinner: turkey, mashed potatoes, and stuffing.

 

Pop Quiz:

What’s the opposite of typical?

A.  Extraordinary

B.  Boring

C.  Normal

To see the correct answer, click on “Continue reading”:

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Humid Revisited

Here are some images from the web using our latest Awesome Adjective:

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Unique and Incomparable Poetry

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Here are a few poems from Unique and Incomparable, the latest collection of student writing from the University Settlement Adult Literacy Program and the NYU Gallatin Writing Program:

TOWARDS A NEW LIFE
Bettina Ockoumou

I miss the sound of the bells of Notre Dame.
I miss the rainbow of flowers from the Tuileries Garden.
I miss the evening strolls on the Alma Bridge.
I miss the lights of the Champs Elysees.
I miss the view from the top of the Eiffel Tower.
I miss the picnics on the Seine banks.
I miss the afternoons at the Louvre Museum.
I miss Paris.
But I’m not sad
Because in New York I have so many places to discover,
And even more memories to build.

 

CHANGING
Kelly Chen

I used to wear a t-shirt and jeans in the fall in China.
Now, I need to wear a light jacket in the fall in New York.
I used to go to the grocery store to buy fresh vegetables and fruits every day after work in China.
Now, I need to prepare a whole week of food on the weekend in New York.
I used to meet my friends very often in China.
Now, I need to make an “appointment” with my friends first, and meet once or twice a month in New York.

I used to chat with my neighbors for a long time in China.
Now, I often stop by and say hi and then shut the door in New York.
Our life is changing everyday. I wish I could change the bad things and keep the good things.
I used to wear a t-shirt and jeans in the fall in China.
Now, I need to wear a light jacket in the fall in New York.
I used to go to the grocery store to buy fresh vegetables and
fruits every day after work in China.
Now, I need to prepare a whole week of food on the weekend in New York.

I used to meet my friends very often in China.
Now, I need to make an “appointment” with my friends first, and meet once or twice a month in New York.
I used to chat with my neighbors for a long time in China.
Now, I often stop by and say hi and then shut the door in New York.
Our life is changing every day. I wish I could change the bad things
and keep the good things.

 

TO MY DEAR EARTH
Lorena Mejia

To my dear earth
Who I love with all my heart
I want to dedicate these words
I wish that this sounds like a song
Green valleys, a blue sky, cover the beautiful scene
From the highest top I close my eyes and I can feel
I’m fortunate here
When the sky cries, the flowers smile
Because I think they’re feeling alive
Who says it is always sadness’s tears?
The sky was just joking to wet the earth
How can you forget the big oceans when you see a map?
The people think there are many fantastic creatures inside
Let’s take care of our only home
Love the earth as if it was your own child

 

MANHATTAN
Qiong (June) Zhou

Manhattan, New York
You have strong modern city features
Like the new World Trade Center and the Statue of Liberty
Rockefeller Center and the grand bridges
The Empire State Building and Times Square
The headquarters of the United Nations and Central Park
You with your unique temperament
Standing at the top of the American economy and culture
The light of freedom shines to the whole world
Along with urban growth, the spirit of the city
Manhattan, New York
There is food that lets you taste all over the world
Here are leading works of art that take people’s breath away
There are many museums and exhibitions
They can make your view and vision big and extensive
Despite the world recession and
The 9/11 terrorist attacks here
You, the unyielding spirit of the urban
Mixed with dazzling neon lights
Let the city of the world shine on the stage
This is Manhattan, New York
A unique, glamorous, infinite city

 

To read more, click here.

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Brush Up Revisited

Here are some quotations and images and advertisements from around the web using our latest Idiom of the Week – just click on any of them for a larger view:

 

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Awesome Adjective: Humid

humid

Meaning: Describing the air when there’s a lot of water in it.

Example:

It gets very hot and humid in New York City during the summer.

They asked the teacher to turn on the air conditioner because it was so humid.

I always feel so tired in humid weather.

 

Pop Quiz:

Where is it not usually very humid?

A.  The jungle.

B.  The ocean.

C.  The desert.

To see the correct answer, click on “Continue reading”:

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Unique and Incomparable

unique-cover

The University Settlement Adult Literacy Program is pleased to announce the publication of its biennial collection of student writing in connection with the NYU Gallatin Writing Program. The latest collection is called Unique and Incomparable, and it has two years’ worth of excellent, entertaining writing by Adult Literacy Program students enrolled in the Advanced Creative Writing Class, taught by Professor June Foley. Read one story below and take the quiz to test your comprehension:

JAPAN’S GREAT EARTHQUAKES

Yuki Umeda

We are powerless in natural disasters like hurricanes, typhoons, heavy snow, and earthquakes, etc. I have experienced two great earthquakes.

My first experience of a great earthquake was the Hanshin Awagi Great Earthquake. It was an early morning on January 17, 1995. I was sleeping in my apartment, and suddenly I felt that something pushed up from under my bed. I didn’t understand what happened. I got under my blanket, scrunched my body, and waited for the bed to stop shaking. All my stuffed toys fell down from the closet.

Japan is a country with a lot of earthquakes. I had experienced many earthquakes, but this was the first time that I was really scared. After the earthquake, I went to work as usual. But a few hours later, I saw a tragic scene on TV. It was a massive fire and collapsed houses. More than 6,000 people died from this earthquake.

My second experience of a great earthquake was the Great East Japan Earthquake. It happened on March 11, 2011. At that time, I was on the porch on the second floor of my house. I felt the house shake from side to side. I went to the first floor, but it was still shaking, so I grabbed my purse and got out of my house. I saw our car and the utility pole were still shaking. I felt that this earthquake was not usual. It was huge. (This earthquake happened 200 kilometers away from our place, but it was so strong.)

I went to the elementary school to pick up my daughter. After that, the electricity in our area was cut off for one night, and the train stopped running. The next day, I saw a tragic scene again on TV. I also heard some very bad news about the nuclear power plant.

Because of the earthquake, a tsunami struck the Sanriku coast. This tsunami was awfully big. So many houses, cars, villages, towns, and people were swept away. Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant was also stuck by this tsunami. This nuclear power plant was broken and brought radioactive contamination. More than 18,000 people died or were missing during this great earthquake.

Now, we have to think about the impact of the radioactive contamination. This Fukushima accident destroyed the environment. We live in a convenient world. We use a lot of electricity. We made a nuclear power plant for our convenient lives. Is this a good way for our future? I had never thought about how to get electricity, and I had never worried about radioactive contamination before I experienced the Great East Japan Earthquake. But now, I know our future has many of problems. Our life became convenient at the sacrifice of something important.

We are attacked by natural disasters.

We defy nature.

We destroy nature.

Nature gets angry, and it will break our convenient lives.

Nature is great.

We have to learn from nature like our ancestors.

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To read more stories, click here.

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