Unit Three     
                               
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               Every  teacher  probably  asks   himself  time   and 
              again: What are the reasons for choosing teaching as  a 
              career? Do the rewards of teaching outweigh the  trying
              moments? Answering  these  questions  is  not  a  simple 
              task. Let's see what the author says.
                            
                            WHY I TEACH                
                           
                                                                             Peter G. Beidler 
              Why do you teach? My friend asked the question when I told  him  that
        I didn't want to be  considered fo r an administrative  position. He was puz-
        zled  that  I did  not want  what was  obviously a "step up" toward what  all 
        Americans are taught to want when they grow up: money and power.

 5           Certainly I don't  teach because  teachingis easy for me. Teaehing is  the 
        most  difficult  of the various ways  I have attempted  to earn my  living:me-
       chanic, carpenter, writer. For me, teaching is a red-eye,  sweaty-palin, 
       sinking-stomach profession.Red-eye,because I never feel  ready to  teach no
       matter how late I stay up preparing.  Sweaty-palm, because I'm always   ner-
10   vous  before I  enter  the  classroom, sure  that I will  be  found  out  for  the 
       fool  that  I am.  Sinking-stomach,  because   I  leave the classroom  an hour 
       later convinced that I was even more boring than usual.

               Nor do I  teach  because I  think  I know  answers, or  because I  have 
       knowledge I  feel compelled  to  share. Sometimes I am amazed that my stu-
15   dents actually take notes on what I say in class !
              Why, then, do I teach?
              I  teach  because  I  like  the pace of the academic calendar. June,  July, 
      and August  offer an  opportunity for   reflection,  research,  and   writing. 

              I teach because teaching is a profession built on change. When the ma-
20   terial is the same, I change - and, more important, my students change.             
              I  teach  because I like  the freedom to make my own mistakes, to learn
      my  own  lessons,  to stimulate  myself  and  my students.  As a  teacher, I'm
      my   own  boss.  If I  want my  freshmen to  learn to write  by  creating  their 
      own  textbook, who is  to say  I can't?  Such courses  may  be  huge failures,
 25  but we can all learn from failures.                       
                                                
              I teach  because  I   like  to ask questions that students must struggle to
     answer.  The  world  is  full  of  right  answers  to bad  questions.While teach-
     ing, I sometimes find good questions.

              I  teach because I enjoy finding ways of getting myself and my students
30  out of the  ivory tower  and  into the  real  world. I once taught a course called    
    "Self-Reliance  in a  Technological  Society." My 15  students  read  Emerson,
    Thoreau, and Huxley. They kept diaries. They wrote term papers.

              But we also set up a corporation, borrowed  money,  purchased  a  run-
    down  house  and  practiced  self-reliance  by  renovating  it. At the end of the 
35 semester, we  sold  the  house, repaid  our  loan, paid  our taxes,and distribut-      
    ed the profits among the group.

              So  teaching  gives me pace, and variety, and challenge, and the  oppor-
     tunity to keep on learning.
              I have left out, however, the most important reasons why I teach.
40           One  is  Vicky.  My  first doctoral student, Vicky was an  energetic  stu-   
     dent  who  labored  at  her  dissertation  on a  little-known  l4th  century  poet.
     She   wrote  articles  and  sent  them  off  to  learned  journals.  She  did  it  all 
     her-self, with  an occasional nudge from me.But I was there when she finished 
     her dissertation, learned  that  her  articles  were  accepted, got  a job and won
45 a   fellowship to  Harvard  working on a  book  developing  ideas  she'd   first   
     had as my student.

            Another  reason  is  George,  who started as an engineering  student, then 
     switched  to English  because  he  decided  he  liked people better than things. 
           There  is  Jeanne,  who  left  college, but  was  brought back by her class-
50  mates  because  they wanted  her to see the end of the self-reliance house pro-     
     ject.  I  was there when she  came  back.  I was  there  when  she  told me that
     she  later  became  interested  in  the  urban  poor  and went on  to  become  a
     civil rights lawyer.

          There  is  Jacqui,  a  cleaning  woman who knows  more  by  intuition  than 
55  most  of  us  lear n by  analysis.  Jacqui  has  decided  to  finish  high  school 
      and go to college.
          These  are  the real  reasons  I teach,  these people who grow  and  change 
      in  front  of  me.  Being  a  teacher   is  being  present  at  the  creation,  when 
      the clay begins to breathe. 

60        A "promotion" out of teaching would give me  money  and  power. But  I
      have  money.  I  get  paid  to  do  what  I  enjoy: reading, talking with people, 
      and asking questions like, "What is the point of being rich?"
            And  I  have  power. I  have the power to nudge, to fan  sparks,  to  sug-
      gest books, to point out a pathway. What other power matters?

65        But  teaching  offers  saomething besides money and power: it offers love. 
      Not  only  the  love  of learning and  of books and ideas,but also the love that 
      a teacher  feels  for  that  rare  student  who  walks  into  a  teacher's  life  and 
      be-gins  to  breathe.  Perhaps love is the wrong word: magic might be  better.
         I  teach  because,  being  around ~eople  who  are  beginning  to  breathe,  I
70  occasionally find myself catching my breath with them.
                         
                                  New Words 
                           

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    administrative/ a.                    of the management of affairs 行政的, 管理的
    administration/ n.                管理(部门),行政(机关) 
    puzzle/ vt.                             fill with doubt and confusion 使迷惑
   step(-)up n.                          promotion; increase in size,speed,etc.
    mechanic / n.                        skilled workman, esp. one who uses or
                                                      repairs machines and tools 机械工; 机修工
  sweaty / a.                             covered with sweat, sweating  
    palm / a.                               手掌
  profession / n.                       occupation, esp. one requiring special
                                                      training, such as law, medicine, or teaching
    convince / vt.                        make (sb.) feel certain; cause (sb.) to realize 
    compel / vt.                          force (sb. or sth. to do sth.)     
    pace/ n.                                rate or speed of development, or in 
                                                   walking, etc. 速度;步速
  caiendar / n.                         日程表,日历   
  opportunity/ n.                     favourable occasion or chance  
    reflection / n.                        careful thinking; consideration 深思;考虑
     reflect /vi.              
    stlmulate / vt.                       encourage; excite 刺激;激励
  freshmari / n.                       student in his first year at a college  or university 
    failnre / n.                            a person, attempt, or thing that fails; 
	                                            lack of success 
    ivory / n.                             象牙
  ivory towsr/ n.                     place or condition of retreat from the 	
                                                     world of action into a world of ideas 
                                                     and dueams象牙塔
  self-reliance/ n.                    ability to do things and make decisions 
                                                      by oneself 依靠自己;自力更生	
  releance/ n.                          trust,confidence; dependence 信赖;信心; 依靠
  technological/ a.                  of or related to technology 技术的
  corporation/ n.                    (AmE)有限公司 
   ruri-dowrn / a.                     old and broken or in bad condition 
    renovate / vt.                       restore (old buildings,oil paintings,etc.)  	
                                                   to a former, better state 修复,修整 
  semester / n.                       (AmE) either of the two periods into 
                                                    which a school year is divided; term 学期 
  repay/ vt.                             psy back (money, etc.) 
    loan / n.                              sth. lent, esp. a sum of money 借出的东西;贷款	
  distribute/ vt.                       divide among several or many; give or
                                                    send out 分发 分送	 
     distribution/ n. 
    variety / n.                          difference in quality,type or character;  	
                                                     a num-ber of or a collection of different 
                                                     things 变化,多样化;种种  	 
  challeng / n.                        the quality of demanding competitive  	
                                              action, in- terest, or thought 挑战
  doctoral/ a.                         having to do with the university degree 
                                                    of doctor 博士的	
  energetic / a.                       vigorous 精力充沛的 
  dissertation / n.                   (学位)论文
  poet / n.                             one who writes poetry 
    learned / a.                         showing or requiring much knowledge 博学的 
  journal / n.                          magazine or daily newspaper 杂志;日报
  occasional /a.                     happening from time to time,not regular
                                                     偶尔的,间或的 		
  nudge / n.                           (fig.) words, actions or feelings that  stimulate 启示		
          vt.                          push or touch slightly, esp. with the  		
                                                    elbow to attract attention; (fig.) stimulate 
    fellowship / n.                     position or a sum of money granted to  		
                                                     a person for advanced study or research 
                                                     研究员职位;研究员薪金
  switch / vt.	                     change or shift; turn 
    urban / a.	                     of a town or city 
    civil rights/ n.                      the rights of a citizen without regard to  		
                                                   his race, religion, sex, etc. 公民权
  lawyer / n.	                     person who practises law 律师
  intuition / n.	                     (power of) the immediate understanding of 		
                                                  truths, events, facts without reasoning
                                                  直觉  
  analysis / n.                        the separation of a substance into parts  		
                                                  for care- ful examination and study 
                                                   分析
  creation/ n.                        act of creating; sth. created 创造()
    clay / n.                             粘土
  point/ n.                            main idea or purpose 要点;意义,目的
  pathway/ n.                       path 	
    rare/ a.                              unusually good; distinctive 稀有的;
                                                 杰出的
  magie / n.                         mysterious charm; strange influence  		
                                                 or power; art of obtaining mysterious 
                                                 results by tricks 魔力;魔术	
                       
                        Phrases & Expressions      
                          
    stay up                          not go to bed until af ter the usual time 
                                             不睡觉,熬夜 
  take notes           记笔记        
  build on                        base  on;  use  as  a  base  for  further 
                                              development   
    keep a diary                  记日记
  leave out                       fail to mention or include; omit
    send off                        post; dispatch 
    work at/on                    give one's attention to doing or trying to do 
    catch one's breath          rest and get back one's normal breath, as  	
                                               after run- ning; stop breathing for a moment  	
                                               from surprise, fear, shock, etc. 	
                            
                            Proper Names  
                             
    Emerson               爱默生(姓氏及男子名)
    Thoreau                梭洛(姓氏)  
    Huxley                  赫胥黎(姓氏) 
    Vicky                   维基(女子名,Victoria的昵称) 
    Harvard                哈佛(美国大学名) 
    Jeanne                  珍妮(女子名) 
    Jacqui                  杰基(女子名,Jacqueline的昵称)  
  

 

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