READING COMPREHENSION – Hard

Are you interested in seeing the beautiful fall foliage of New England but tired of traffic jams and overbooked hotels? Then this year forget the crowds in New England and see the beautiful colors of autumn in the Catskills.5 These rugged mountains in New York State, just 90 miles northwest of New York City, are famous for the legendary tales of Rip Van Winkle, and more recently for the summer hotels that sprang up in the region during the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s. Families trying to escape the 10 heat of New York City found the Catskills to be the perfect place to stay for a month or so each summer. By the late 1950s there were over 500 resorts and hotels offering nighttime entertainment as well as all kinds of outdoor activities. Famous comedians like Jackie Gleason, Joan Rivers, and Sid Caesar all got their start touring 15 the hotel clubs here. Since the introduction of air-conditioning and cheaper air travel, however, families have stopped coming to the Catskills in such large numbers, choosing instead more distant locations at different times of the year. Many of the Catskill hotels closed in the 1970s, but some remain and have expanded and changed 20 their facilities to meet the needs of today’s visitors.

Currently, there are many activities available to the traveler besides witnessing the changing colors of the leaves. There is an all-organic sheep farm where visitors can see how a traditional sheep farm operates. 25 There are also hundreds of miles of scenic drives in the area. Route 42, for instance, is an excellent site for spotting bald eagles. For more information on vacations in the Catskills, call the Office of Public Information.

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Reading comprehension 16

About 200 million years ago, as the Triassic Period came to a close, many species of animals disappeared from the face of the Earth. Scientists previously believed that the series of extinctions happened over a period of 15 to 20 million years. Recent discoveries in Nova Scotia 5 suggest, however, that the extinctions may have happened over a much shorter period of time, perhaps less than 850,000 years.  Continue reading

Reading Comprehension 15 (Hi ! Long time no see)

THE EFFECTS OF STRESS

There is a famous expression in English: “Stop the world, I want to get off!” This expression refers to a feeling of panic, or stress, that makes a person want to stop whatever they are doing, try to relax, and become calm again. ‘Stress’ means pressure or tension. It is one of the most common causes of health problems in modern life. Too much stress results in physical, emotional, and mental health problems.

There are numerous physical effects of stress. Stress can affect the heart. It can increase the pulse rate, make the heart miss beats, and can cause high blood pressure. Stress can affect the respiratory system. It can lead to asthma. It can cause a person to breathe too fast, resulting in a loss of important carbon dioxide. Stress can affect the stomach. It can cause stomach aches and problems digesting food. These are only a few examples of the wide range of illnesses and symptoms resulting from stress.

Emotions are also easily affected by stress. People suffering from stress often feel anxious. They may have panic attacks. They may feel tired all the time. When people are under stress, they often overreact to little problems. For example, a normally gentle parent under a lot of stress at work may yell at a child for dropping a glass of juice. Stress can make people angry, moody, or nervous.
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Happy New Year 2014 !

Happy New Year, everybody.  Let my deep wishes always surround the wonderful journey of your life. I hope in the coming year you will have a good health and smooth sailing life, and visit us 4 more and more INTERESTING things in this year. By the way, from now on, I will make a schedule. It is:

Monday—-Reading comprehension –> Grammar test –> TOEFL Error identifying exercises

Tuesday—VOA Special English –> English Stories

Wednesday & Thursday—Reading –> Speaking test

Friday—Writting and topics

Saturday—English Stories –> Reading comprehension

Sunday—Practice Test –> Reading comprehension –> Listening (I can’t find the source but I will try) –> Vocabulary (It’s Miayamazaki’s work, not me :()

Remember, this is MY schedule, not Miayamazaki. HAPPY NEW YEAR, FOLKS !