英语四级天天练2020-08-19 13:21:10


In this section, you are going to read a passage with ten statements attached to it. Each statement contains information given in one of the paragraphs. Identify the paragraph from which the information is derived. You may choose a paragraph more than once. Each paragraph is marked with a letter. Answer the questions by marking the corresponding letter on Answer Sheet 2.


  The Touch-Screen Generation

  A) On a chilly day last spring, a few dozen developers of children’s apps(应用程序)for phones and tablets(平板电脑)gathered at an old beach resort in Monterey, California, to show off their games. The gathering was organized by Warren Buckleitner, a longtime reviewer of interactive children’s media. Buckleitner spent the breaks testing whether his own remote-control helicopter could reach the hall's second story, while various children who had come with their parents looked up in awe(敬畏)and delight. But mostly they looked down, at the iPads and other tablets displayed around the hall like so many open boxes of candy. I walked around and talked with developers, and several quoted a famous saying of Maria Montessori’s, “The hands are the instruments of man’s intelligence.”

  B) What, really, would Maria Montessori have made of this scene? The 30 or so children here were not down at the shore poking(戳)their fingers in the sand or running them along stones or picking seashells. Instead they were all inside, alone or in groups of two or three, their faces a few inches from a screen, their hands doing things Montessori surely did not imagine.

  C) In 2011, the American Academy of Pediatrics updated its policy on very young children and media. In 1999, the group had discouraged television viewing for children younger than 2, citing research on brain development that showed this age group’s critical need for “direct interactions with parents and other significant care givers.” The updated report began by acknowledging that things had changed significantly since then. In 2006, 90% of parents said that their children younger than 2 consumed some form of electronic media. Nevertheless, the group took largely the same approach it did in 1999, uniformly discouraging passive media use, on any type of screen, for these kids. (For older children, the academy noted, “high-quality programs” could have “educational benefits.”) The 2011 report mentioned “smart cell phone” and “new screen” technologies, but did not address interactive apps. Nor did it bring up the possibility that has likely occurred to those 90% of American parents that some good might come from those little swiping(在电子产品上刷)fingers.

  D) I had come to the developers’ conference partly because I hoped that this particular set of parents, enthusiastic as they were about interactive media, might help me out of this problem, that they might offer some guiding principle for American parents who are clearly never going to meet the academy’s ideals, and at some level do not want to. Perhaps this group would be able to express clearly some benefits of the new technology that the more cautious doctors weren’t ready to address.

  E) I fell into conversation with a woman who had helped develop Montessori Letter Sounds, an app that teaches preschoolers the Montessori methods of spelling. She was a former Montessori teacher and a mother of four. I myself have three children who are all fans of the touch screen. What games did her kids like to play, I asked, hoping for suggestions I could take home.

  “They don’t play all that much.”

  Really? Why not?

  “Because I don’t allow it. We have a rule of no screen time during the week, unless it’s clearly

  educational. ”

  No screen time? None at all? That seems at the outer edge of restrictive, even by the standards of

  overcontrolling parents.

  “On the weekends, they can play. I give them a limit of half an hour and then stop. Enough.”

  F) Her answer so surprised me that I decided to ask some of the other developers who were also parents what their domestic ground rules for screen time were. One said only on airplanes and long car rides. Another said Wednesdays and weekends, for half an hour. The most permissive said half an hour a day, which was about my rule at home. At one point I sat with one of the biggest developers of e-book apps for kids, and his family. The small kid was starting to fuss in her high chair, so the mom stuck an iPad in front of her and played a short movie so everyone else could enjoy their lunch. When she saw me watching, she gave me the universal tense look of mothers who feel they are being judged. “At home,” she assured me, “I only let her watch movies in Spanish. ’’

  G) By their reactions, these parents made me understand the problem of our age: as technology becomes almost everywhere in our lives. American parents are becoming more, not less, distrustful of what it might be doing to their children. Technological ability has not, for parents, translated into comfort and ease. On the one hand, parents want their children to swim expertly in the digital stream that they will have to navigate(航行)all their lives; on the other hand, they fear that too much digital media, too early, will sink them. Parents end up treating tablets as precision surgical(外科的)instruments, devices that might perform miracles for their child's IQ and help him win some great robotics competition—but only if they are used just so. Otherwise, their child could end up one of those sad, pale creatures who can’t make eye contact and has a girlfriend who lives only in the virtual world.

  H) Norman Rockwell, a 20th-century artist, never painted Boy Swiping Finger on Screen, and our own vision of a perfect childhood has never been adjusted to accommodate that now-common scene. Add to that our modern fear that every parenting decision may have lasting consequences - that every minute of enrichment lost or mindless entertainment indulged(放纵的)will add up to some permanent handicap(障碍)in the future—and you have deep guilt and confusion. To date, no body of research has proved that the iPad will make your preschooler smarter or teach her to speak Chinese, or alternatively that it will rust her nervous system the device has been out for only three years, not much more than the time it takes some academics to find funding and gather research subjects. So what is a parent to do?


  46. The author attended the conference, hoping to find some guiding principles for parenting in the electronic age.

  47. American parents are becoming more doubtful about the benefits technology is said to bring to their children.

  48. Some experts believe that human intelligence develops by the use of hands.

  49. The author found a former Montessori teacher exercising strict control over her kids, screen time.

  50. Research shows interaction with people is key to babies’ brain development.

  51. So far there has been no scientific proof of the educational benefits of iPads.

  52. American parents worry that overuse of tablets will create problems with their kids’ interpersonal relationships.

  53. The author expected developers of children's apps to specify the benefits of the new technology.

  54. The kids at the gathering were more fascinated by the iPads than by the helicopter.

  55. The author permits her children to use the screen for at most half an hour a day.


  The End of the Book?

  A) Amazon, by far the largest bookseller in the country, reported on May 19 that it is now selling more books in its electronic Kindle format than in the old paper-and-ink format. That is remarkable, considering that the Kindle has only been around for four years. E-books now account for 14 percent of all book sales in this country and arc increasing far faster than overall book sales. E-book sales are up 146 percent over last year, while hardback sales increased 6 percent and paperbacks decreased 8 percent.

  B) Does this spell the doom of the physical book? Certainly not immediately, and perhaps not at all. What it does mean is that the book business will go through a transformation in the next decade or so more profound than any it has seen since Gutenberg introduced printing from moveable type in the 1450s.

  C) Physical books will surely become much rarer in the marketplace. Mass market paperbacks, which have been declining for years anyway, will probably disappear, as will hardbacks for mysteries, thrillers, “ romance fiction,” etc. Such books, which only rarely end up in permanent collections, either private or public, will probably only be available as e-books within a few years. Hardback and trade paperbacks for “serious” nonfiction and fiction will surely last longer. Perhaps it will become the mark of an author to reckon with that he or she is still published in hard copy.

  D) As for children’s books, who knows? Children’s books are like dog food in that the purchasers are not the consumers, so the market (and the marketing) is inherently strange.

  E) For clues to the book's future. Jet's look at some examples of technological change and see what happened to the old technology.

  F) One technology replaces another only because the new technology is better, cheaper, or both. The greater the difference, the sooner and more thoroughly the new technology replaces the old. Printing with moveable type on paper dramatically reduced the cost of producing a book compared with the old-fashioned ones handwritten on vellum, which comes from sheepskin. A Bible—to be sure, a long book—required vellum made from 300 sheepskins and countless man-hours of labor. Before printing arrived, a Bible cost more than a middle-class house. There were perhaps 50 000 books in all of Europe in 1450. By 1500 there were 10 million.

  G) But while printing quickly caused the handwritten book to die out. handwriting lingered on(继续存在)well into the 16th century. Very special books are still occasionally produced on vellum, but they are one-of-a-kind show pieces.

  H) Sometimes a new technology doesn't drive the old one out. but only parts of it while forcing the rest to evolve. The movies were widely predicted to drive live theater out of the marketplace, but they didn't, because theater turned out to have qualities movies could not reproduce. Equally, TV was supposed to replace movies but, again, did not.

  I) Movies did, however, fatally impact some parts of live theater. An while TV didn't kill movies, it did kill second-rate pictures, shorts, and cartoons.

  J) Nor did TV kill radio. Comedy and drama shows (“Jack Benny,” "Amos and Andy.” “The Shadow”)all migrated to television. But because you can't drive a car and watch television at the same time, rush hour became radio's prime time, while music, talk, and news radio greatly enlarged their audiences. Radio is today a very different business than in the late 1940s and a much larger one.

  K) Sometimes old technology lingers for centuries because of its symbolic power. Mounted cavalry (骑兵)replaced the chariot (二轮战车)on the battlefield around 1000 BC. But chariots maintained their place in parades and triumphs right up until the end of the Roman Empire 1 500 years later. The sword hasn't had a military function for a hundred years, but is still part of an officer's full-dress uniform, precisely because a sword always symbolized “an officer and a gentleman. ”

  L) Sometimes new technology is a little cranky (不稳定的)at first. Television repairman was a common occupation in the 1950s, for instance. And so the old technology remains as a backup. Steamships captured the North Atlantic passenger business from sail in the 1840s because of its much greater speed. But steamships didn't lose their sails until the 1880s, because early marine engines had a nasty habit of breaking down. Until ships became large enough (and engines small enough) to mount two engines side by side, they needed to keep sails. (The high cost of steam and the lesser need for speed kept the majority of the world’s ocean freight moving by sail until the early years of the 20th century.)

  M) Then there is the fireplace. Central heating was present in every upper- and middle-class home by the second half of the 19th century. But functioning fireplaces remain to this day a powerful selling point in a house or apartment. I suspect the reason is a deep-rooted love of fire. Fire was one of the earliest major technological advances for humankind, providing heat, protection, and cooked food (which is much easier to cat and digest). Human control of fire goes back far enough (over a million years) that evolution could have produced a genetic leaning towards fire as a control aspect of human life.

  N) Books—especially books the average person could afford—haven't been around long enough to produce evolutionary change in humans. But they have a powerful hold on many people nonetheless, a hold extending far beyond their literary content. At their best, they arc works of art and there is a tactile(触觉的)pleasure in books necessarily lost in e-book versions. The ability to quickly thumb through pages is also lost. And a room with books in it induces, at least in some, a feeling not dissimilar to that of a fire in the fireplace on a cold winter's night.

  O) For these reasons I think physical books will have a longer existence as a commercial product than some currently predict. Like swords, books have symbolic power. Like fireplaces, they induce a sense of comfort and warmth. And, perhaps, similar to sails, they make a useful backup for when the lights go out.


  46. Authors still published in printed versions will be considered important ones.

  47. Some people are still in favor of printed books because of the sense of touch they can provide.

  48. The radio business has changed greatly and now attracts more listeners.

  49. Contrary to many people's prediction of its death, the film industry survived.

  50. Remarkable changes have taken place in the book business.

  51. Old technology sometimes continues to exist because of its reliability.

  52. The increase of e-book sales will force the book business lo make changes not seen for centuries.

  53. A new technology is unlikely to take the place of an old one without a clear advantage.

  54. Paperbacks of popular literature arc more likely to be replaced by e-books.

  55. A house with a fireplace has a stronger appeal to buyers.

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