Birds string together meaningless sounds to make ‘words’

Duo chectnut crowned babbler

Summary:
A new study sheds light on whether animal vocalizations, like human words, are constructed from smaller building blocks. By analyzing calls of the Australian chestnut-crowned babbler, the researchers have for the first time identified the meaning-generating building blocks of a non-human communication system.
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Stringing together meaningless sounds to create meaningful signals is a core feature of human language. Investigating whether animals share this basic combinatorial ability has been complicated by difficulties in identifying whether animal vocalizations are made from smaller, meaningless sounds, or building blocks. New research by scientists at the Universities of Zurich, Exeter, Warwick, Macquarie and New South Wales has addressed this question in the calls of the chestnut-crowned babbler (Pomatostomus ruficeps) — a highly social bird from the Australian Outback.

Meaningful calls composed of distinct sounds
Previous research demonstrated that chestnut-crowned babbler calls seemed to be composed of two different sounds “A” and “B” in different arrangements when performing specific behaviors. When flying, the birds produced a flight call “AB,” but when feeding chicks in the nest they emitted “BAB” provisioning calls.
In the current study, the authors used playback experiments, previously used to test speech-sound discrimination in human infants, to probe the perception of the sound elements in babblers. “Through systematic comparisons we tested which of the elements babblers perceived as equivalent or different sounds. In doing so, we were able to confirm that the calls could be broken up into two perceptually distinct sounds that are shared across the calls in different arrangements,” explains Sabrina Engesser from the University of Zurich, lead author on the study. “Furthermore, none of the comprising elements carried the meaning of the calls, confirming the elements are meaningless,” she adds.
“This system is reminiscent of the way humans use sounds to form meaningful words,” says co-author Andy Russell from the University of Exeter. The research findings, which are published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, reveal a potential early step in the emergence of the elaborate combinatorial sound system characterizing human language.

Understanding the evolution of communication
Last author Simon Townsend from the University of Zurich and the University of Warwick says: “This is the first time that the meaning-generating building blocks of a non-human communication system have been experimentally identified.” He concludes: “Although the building blocks in the babbler system may be of a very simple kind, it might still help us understand how combinatoriality initially evolved in humans.”

These findings raise the exciting possibility that the capacity to generate meaning from meaningless building blocks is widespread in animals. However, the authors caution that there are still considerable differences between such systems and word generation in language. They emphasize that a focus on the acoustic distinctiveness of sounds in meaningful animal vocalizations offers a promising approach to investigate the building blocks of non-human animal communication systems.

Citation: University of Zurich. (2019, September 9). Birds string together meaningless sounds to make ‘words’. ScienceDaily.

Source Link: Science Daily

Drama as a Genre

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I. Nature of Drama

Drama is a story of a conflict told entirely in story and action. Drama is written with the intention of its eventual performance before an audience. Therefore drama has a dual nature, that of literature and that of a theater. When one reads drama , he can imagine it in performance in the theater of the mind.

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II. Performance Spaces

A suitable site has to be provided for performances. A clear division is usually made between the acting area and the auditorium. This was the beginning of the performance space in the auditorium.

a. Arena – the actors are in the middle of the audience who are generally raised up to look down on the acting area whose shape is also circular or square, though other shapes are also possible

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b. Open. The audience are on three sides of the acting area which usually backs up against a wall from which there are entries.

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c. End
The audience all face one way looking at the acting area which is generally raised (though it can be flat if the seating is raised considerably.

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d. Proscenium – like a picture frame around. This method of staging was much common in the last century, though it is slowly dying out. Many schools planned theaters this way. Considerable lighting effects are possible with the proper resources.

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Stage Acting Areas

It is in reference to the latter three types of staging which are baked by a wall, that the following acting areas are designated particularly for the convenience of actor. The horizontal area nearest the wall is called UPSTAGE (U). The one near the audience is DOWNSTAGE (D). The middle part is the CENTER (C). The directions are left (L) and right (R) relative to the actor on stage who faces the audience.
Hence, the areas are Downstage Right (DR), Upstage Right (UR), Right Center stage (RC), Upstage Left (UL), Downstage Left (DL) and Left Center stage (LC).

 

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Elements of Drama
To appreciate drama, one needs to understand the elements that make up the genre. These are:
a. Setting – It is when and where the action happens.
b. Characters –the people in the play A picture of each character is created in the imagination – one arising from the ff. aspects;
1. Physical- concerned with basic facts as gender, age, size, and color.It also entails appearance.
2. Social- the character’s economic status, profession or trade, religion and family relationship. All factors that gleaned from her environment.
3. Psychological – this reveal’s character’s habitual responses, attitudes, desires, motivation, likes and dislikes.-or inner workings of the mind.
4. Moral- this maybe seen in very serious plays, esp. tragedies, in which characters make moral decisions revealing their motives, thus projecting goodness and badness.
c. Plot – the arrangement of series of events that make up the story in the play.
1. Organic – it consists of scenes which are arranged accdg. To chronological sequence.
2. Episodic – It consists of a series of episodes where the theme develops and characters interact unitedly as the theme progresses.
3. Theme – the overall meaning or significance of the action. It unifies the drama around a central idea, motif or concept.
4. Style –refers to the playwright’s standpoint or outlook in life. There are two major dramatic attitudes, realism and non realism.
*realism– is life like. Things are presented as real as can be set in real life places, with dialogues sounding as everyday conversations.
*Non-realism – is the stylized theatricalized method of presentation whereby an artist make use of his wildest imagination in projecting his ideas, such as scenes that are fantastic and set in far away places and times, or those covering long periods of time.

stage pix

Types of Drama
a. Tragedy – a serious look in life wherein the hero sets to do something basically good but fails catastrophically in the end though he has put up a valiant fight.
b. Comedy- a play that evokes laughter.
c. Melodrama – is derived from tragedy but it is rather exaggerated and concentrates on action. It may also be called Tragicomedy; Melodrama deals with serious action, but seriousness that is only temporary and usually suitable to the malicious designs of an unsympathetic character, A happy resolution is achieved by neutralizing or destroying the power of the villain.
d. Farce – tries to create laughter for the sake of laughter, usually making use of exaggerated incidents and character.

Sources: Theaters Trust

 

Value

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A popular speaker started off a seminar by holding up a $20 bill. A crowd of 200 had gathered to hear him speak. He asked, “Who would like this $20 bill?”
200 hands went up.
He said, “I am going to give this $20 to one of you but first, let me do this.” He crumpled the bill up.
He then asked, “Who still wants it?”
All 200 hands were still raised.
“Well,” he replied, “What if I do this?” Then he dropped the bill on the ground and stomped on it with his shoes.
He picked it up, and showed it to the crowd. The bill was all crumpled and dirty.
“Now who still wants it?”
All the hands still went up.
“My friends, I have just showed you a very important lesson. No matter what I did to the money, you still wanted it because it did not decrease in value. It was still worth $20. Many times in our lives, life crumples us and grinds us into the dirt. We make bad decisions or deal with poor circumstances. We feel worthless. But no matter what has happened or what will happen, you will never lose your value. You are special – Don’t ever forget it!

Reference

 

The Ramayana: A Telling Of the Ancient Indian Epic

king-and-queen

Etymology
The name Ramayana is a tatpuruṣa compound of Rāma and ayana (going, advancing), translating to Rama’s Journey.

Textual History & Structure

valmiki
An artist’s impression of Valmiki Muni ( author ) composing the Ramayana

A Brief Synopsis
Dasharatha was the King of Ayodhya and had three wives and four sons. Rama was the eldest and his mother was Kaushalya. Bharata was the son of Dasharatha’s second and favorite wife, Queen Kaikeyi. The other two were twins, Lakshmana and Shatrughna whose mother was Sumithra.

4-sons

In the neighboring city the ruler’s daughter was named Sita. When it was time for Sita to choose her bridegroom (at a ceremony called a swayamvara) princes from all over the land were asked to string a giant bow which no one could lift. However, as Rama picked it up, he not only strung the bow, he broke it.

archery-contest

Seeing this, Sita indicated that she had chosen Rama as her husband by putting a garland around his neck. Their love became a model for the entire kingdom as they looked over the kingdom under the watchful eye of his father the king.

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Rama and Sita have been married for twelve years, that the elderly Dasharatha expresses his desire to crown Rama, to which the Kosala assembly and his subjects express their support. Everyone seemed pleased, but not Queen Kaekeyi, who wanted her son Bharata to rule even though the king pleaded with her not to demand such a request.
On the eve of the great event, Kaikeyi—her jealousy aroused by Manthara, a wicked maidservant—claims two boons that Dasharatha had long ago granted her. Kaikeyi demands Rama to be exiled into the wilderness for fourteen years, while the succession passes to her son Bharata.The heartbroken king, constrained by his rigid devotion to his given word, accedes to Kaikeyi’s demands.
Rama accepts his father’s reluctant decree with absolute submission and calm self-control which characterises him throughout the story. He is joined by Sita and Lakshmana. When he asks Sita not to follow him, she says, “the forest where you dwell is Ayodhya for me and Ayodhya without you is a veritable hell for me.” After Rama’s departure, King Dasharatha, unable to bear the grief, passes away.

bharat

Meanwhile, Bharata who was on a visit to his maternal uncle, learns about the events in Ayodhya. Bharata refuses to profit from his mother’s wicked scheming and visits Rama in the forest. He requests Rama to return and rule. But Rama, determined to carry out his father’s orders to the letter, refuses to return before the period of exile. However, Bharata carries Rama’s sandals and keeps them on the throne, while he rules as Rama’s regent.

The devastated King could not face Rama and it was Queen Kaikeyi who told Rama the King’s decree. Rama, always obedient, was content to go into banishment in the forest. Sita and Lakshmana accompanied him on his exile.

One day Rama and Lakshmana wounded a rakshasas (demon) princess who tried to seduce Rama. She returned to her brother Ravana, the ten-headed ruler of Lanka. In retaliation, Ravana devised a plan to abduct Sita after hearing about her incomparable beauty. He sent one of his demons disguised as a magical golden deer to entice Sita. To please her, Rama and Lakshmana went to hunt the deer down. Before they did though, they drew a protective circle around Sita and told her that she would be safe for as long as she did not step outside the circle. After Rama and Lakshmana left, Ravana appeared as a holy man begging alms. The moment Sita stepped outside the circle to give him food, Ravana grabbed her and carried her to his kingdom in Lanka.

The Battle at Lanka, Ramayana by Sahibdin. It depicts the monkey army of the protagonist Rama(top left, blue figure) fighting Ravana—the demon-king of the Lanka—to save Rama’s kidnapped wife, Sita. The painting depicts multiple events in the battle against the three-headed demon general Trisiras, in bottom left. Trisiras is beheaded by Hanuman, the monkey-companion of Rama.

monkey-battle
Rama then sought the help of a band of monkeys offer to help him find Sita. Hanuman, the general of the monkey band can fly since his father is the wind. He flew to Lanka and, finding Sita in the grove, comforted her and told her Rama would come to save her soon. Ravana’s men captured Hanuman, and Ravana ordered them to wrap Hanuman’s tail in cloth and to set it on fire. With his tail burning, Hanuman escaped and hopped from house-top to house-top, setting Lanka on fire. He then flew back to Rama to tell him where Sita was.

Rama, Lakshmana and the monkey army built a causeway from the tip of India to Lanka and crossed over to Lanka where a cosmic battle ensued. Rama killed several of Ravana’s brothers and eventually confronted the ten-headed Ravana. He killed Ravana, freed Sita and after Sita proved here purity, they returned to Ayodhya where Bharata returned the crown to him.

Source

Sonnet

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The sonnet is a type of lyric poetry that started in Europe. After the 13th century, it began to signify a poem that had 14 lines which has an iambic pentameter meter: Iambic means that the first syllable is not stressed in each of the “feet,” the groups of syllables in poetry. The second one is stressed.

Who invented the sonnet?

A. Italian (Petrarchan) sonnet .

The sonnet was created by Giacomo da Lentini, head of the Sicilian School under Emperor Frederick II. Guittone d’Arezzo rediscovered it and brought it to Tuscany where he adapted it to his language when he founded the Neo-Sicilian School (1235–1294).

B. The Spenserian sonnet

This is invented by sixteenth century English poet Edmund Spenser, cribs its structure from the Shakespearean—three quatrains and a couplet—but employs a series of “couplet links” between quatrains, as revealed in the rhyme scheme: abab, bcbc, cdcd

C. Shakesperean Sonnet

Shakespeare’s Sonnets were first collected in book form in 1609. Among the most famous of the 154 sonnets is Sonnet 18, which includes the line, “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?”

With three exceptions, all of Shakespeare’s sonnets follow traditional Elizabethan sonnet structure: three stanzas with ABAB rhyme schemes, followed by a couplet with an AA rhyme scheme.

Many of the sonnets explore the theme of love, including one of the most famous poems, Sonnet 18, in which the speaker compares his love to a summer’s day.

Shakespeare modifies the octet-sextet pattern of the Petrarchan sonnet to include three stanzas of four lines, allowing him to develop his themes in a subtler way.

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Main  differences between Petrarchan and Shakespearean sonnets:

The Shakespearean Sonnet, or English Sonnet, is very different from the Petrarchan Sonnet. While the Shakespearean Sonnet consists of fourteen lines (like the Petrarchan Sonnet), the lines are divided into stanzas very differently.

This sonnet is composed using three quatrains (three stanzas consisting of four lines each) and a concluding couplet (a two line stanza). The rhyme scheme of this sonnet is alternating, throughout the quatrains, and ends in a rhyming couplet.
Therefore, the rhyme scheme of the Shakespearean Sonnet is as follows:

a b a b    c d c d       e f e f         g g

What is the main feature of Petrarchan Sonnets?

The Italian, or Petrarchan, Sonnet is written in iambic pentameter. The sonnet consists of fourteen lines, separated into an eight line stanza and a six line stanza. The first stanza (with eight lines) is called an octave and follows the following rhyme pattern:

a b b a a b b a.

The second stanza (consisting of six lines) is called a sestet and follows one of the following rhyme patterns:

c d c d c d c d e c d e c d e c e d c d c e d c

c d d c d c.

The final two lines cannot end in a couplet (given the couplet was never used in Italy or by Petrarch).

The change in both rhyme pattern and subject matter takes place by the creation of two distinct stanzas (the octave and the sestet). The change in rhyme and subject happen at the volta, the ninth line of the poem (the first line of the second stanza).

shakespearean

Sample Shakespearean Sonnet

Sonnet 18

Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer’s lease hath all too short a date:
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimm’d;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance, or nature’s changing course, untrimm’d:
But thy eternal summer shall not fade,
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow’st;
Nor shall Death brag thou wander’st in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou grow’st:
So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.

Sample Petrarchan Sonnet:

William Wordsworth’s “London, 1802”

Octave – introduces the theme or problem

Milton! thou shouldst be living at this hour: – A
England hath need of thee: she is a fen – B
Of stagnant waters: altar, sword, and pen, – B
Fireside, the heroic wealth of hall and bower, – A
Have forfeited their ancient English dower – A
Of inward happiness. We are selfish men; – B
Oh! raise us up, return to us again; – B
And give us manners, virtue, freedom, power. – A

Sestet – solves the problem

Thy soul was like a Star, and dwelt apart; – C
Thou hadst a voice whose sound was like the sea: – D
So didst thou travel on life’s common way , – E
In cheerful godliness; and yet thy heart – C
Pure as the naked heavens, majestic, free, – D
The lowliest duties on herself did lay. – E

Spenserian sonnet

Definition of Spenserian sonnet
: a sonnet in which the lines are grouped into three interlocked quatrains and a couplet and the rhyme scheme is abab, bcbc, cdcd, ee

AMORETTI, SONNET #75

By Edmund Spenser

One day I wrote her name upon the strand,
But came the waves and washed it away:
Again I write it with a second hand,
But came the tide, and made my pains his prey.
Vain man, said she, that doest in vain assay,
A mortal thing so to immortalize,
For I myself shall like to this decay,
And eek my name be wiped out likewise.
Not so, (quod I) let baser things devise
To die in dust, but you shall live by fame:
My verse, your virtues rare shall eternize,
And in the heavens write your glorious name.
Where whenas death shall all the world subdue,
Our love shall live, and later life renew.
1594

Source: Wikipedia

Appointment with Love by: S. I. Kishor

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In six minutes Lt. Blandford would meet the woman he thought he loved. He had corresponded with her for over a year, but he had never met her or seen her picture. Would he be surprised or disappointed?
Six minutes to six, said the clock over the information booth in New York’s Grand central Station. The tall young Army lieutenant lifted his sunburned face, and narrowed his eyes to note the exact time. His heart was pounding with a beat that shocked him. In six minutes he would see the woman who had filled such a special place in his life for the past thirteen months, the woman he had never seen, yet those written words had sustained him unfailingly.
Lieutenant Blandford remembered one day in particular, the worst of the fighting, when his plane had been caught in the midst of a pack of enemy planes.
In one of his letters, he had confessed to her that he often felt fear, and only a few days before his battle, he had received her answer: “Of course you fear…all brave men do. Next time you doubt yourself, I want you to hear my voice reciting to you: “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I shall fear no evil, for Thou art with me”… He had remembered and it had renewed his strength.
Now he was going to hear her real voice. Four minutes to six.
A girl passed close to him, and Lieutenant Blandford started. She was wearing a flower, but it was not the little red rose they had agreed upon. Besides, the girl was only about 18, and Hollis Meynell had told him she was 30. “What of it?” he had answered. “I’m 32.” He was 29.
His mind went back to that book he had read in the training camp. Of Human Bondage, it was; and throughout the book were notes in a woman’s writing. He had never believed that a woman could see into a man’s heart so tenderly, so understandingly. Her name was on the bookplate: Hollis Meynell. He had got hold of a New York City telephone book and found her address. He had written, she had answered. Next day he had been shipped out, but they had gone on writing.
For 13 months she had faithfully replied. When his letters did not arrive, she wrote anyway, and now he believed he loved her, and she loved him.
But she refused all his pleas to send him her photograph. She had explained: “If your feeling for me has any reality, what I look like won’t matter. Suppose I’m beautiful, I’d always be haunted by the feeling that you had been taking a chance on just that, and that kind of love would disgust me. Suppose I’m plain (and you must admit that it is more likely), then I’d always fear that you were only writing because you were lonely and had no one else. No, don’t ask for my picture. When you come to New York, you shall see me and then you shall make your decision.”
One minute to six… Then Lieutenant Blandford’s heart leapt.
A young woman was coming toward him. Her figure was long and slim; her blond hair lay back in curls from her delicate ears. Her eyes were blue as flowers, her lips and chin had a gentle firmness. In her pale green suit, she was like springtime come alive. He started toward her, forgetting to notice that she was wearing no rose, and as he moved, a small, provocative smile curved her lips.
“Going my way, soldier?” she murmured.
He made one step closer to her. Then he saw Hollis Meynell.
She was standing almost directly behind the girl, a woman well past 40, her graying hair tucked under a worn hat. She was more than plump; her thick-ankled feet were thrust into a low-heeled shoe. But she wore a red rose on her rumpled coat.
The girl in the green suit was walking quickly away.
Blandford felt as if though he were being split into two, so keen was his desire to follow the girl, yet so deep was his longing for the woman whose spirit had truly companioned and upheld his own; and there she stood. He could see that her pale, plump face was gentle and sensible; her grey eyes had a warm twinkle.
Lieutenant Blandford did not hesitate. His fingers gripped the worn copy of Human Bondage which was to identify him to her. This would not be love, but it would be something precious, a friendship for which he had been and must ever be grateful…
He squared his shoulders, saluted, and held out the book toward the woman, although even while he spoke he felt the bitterness of his disappointment.
“I’m Lieutenant John Blandford and you — you are Miss Meynell. I’m so glad you can meet me. May – may I take you to dinner?”
The woman’s face broadened in a tolerant smile. “I don’t know what this is all about, son,” she answered. “That young lady in the green suit, she begged me to wear this rose on my coat. And she said that if you asked me to go out with you, I should tell you that she’s waiting for you in that restaurant across the street. She said that it was kind of a test.”
end

Haiku

haiku

Haiku (俳句?) is a very short form of Japanese poetry. It is typically characterized by three qualities:
The essence of haiku is “cutting” (kiru). This is often represented by the juxtaposition of two images or ideas and a kireji (“cutting word”) between them, a kind of verbal punctuation mark which signals the moment of separation and colours the manner in which the juxtaposed elements are related.
Traditional haiku consist of 17 on (also known as morae though often loosely translated as “syllables”), in three phrases of 5, 7, and 5 on respectively.

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A kigo (seasonal reference), usually drawn from a saijiki, an extensive but defined list of such words.
Modern Japanese haiku (現代俳句 gendai-haiku) are increasingly unlikely to follow the tradition of 17 on or to take nature as their subject[citation needed], but the use of juxtaposition continues to be honored in both traditional and modern haiku.There is a common, although relatively recent, perception that the images juxtaposed must be directly observed everyday objects or occurrences.

sample of haiku.jpg
In Japanese, haiku are traditionally printed in a single vertical line while haiku in English often appear in three lines to parallel the three phrases of Japanese haiku.
Previously called hokku, haiku was given its current name by the Japanese writer Masaoka Shiki at the end of the 19th century.

Kiru and Kireji

In Japanese haiku a kireji, or cutting word, typically appears at the end of one of the verse’s three phrases. A kireji fills a role somewhat analogous to a caesura in classical western poetry or to a volta in sonnets. Depending on which cutting word is chosen, and its position within the verse, it may briefly cut the stream of thought, suggesting a parallel between the preceding and following phrases, or it may provide a dignified ending, concluding the verse with a heightened sense of closure.

The fundamental aesthetic quality of both hokku and haiku is that it is internally sufficient, independent of context, and will bear consideration as a complete work.[citation needed] The kireji lends the verse structural support,allowing it to stand as an independent poem.The use of kireji distinguishes haiku and hokku from second and subsequent verses of renku; which may employ semantic and syntactic disjuncture, even to the point of occasionally end-stopping a phrase with a sentence-ending particle (終助詞 shūjoshi?). However, renku typically employ kireji.

In English, since kireji have no direct equivalent, poets sometimes use punctuation such as a dash or ellipsis, or an implied break to create a juxtaposition intended to prompt the reader to reflect on the relationship between the two parts.

The kireji in the Bashō examples “old pond” and “the wind of Mt Fuji” are both “ya” (や). Neither the remaining Bashō example nor the Issa example contain a kireji although they do both balance a fragment in the first five on against a phrase in the remaining 12 on (it may not be apparent from the English translation of the Issa that the first five on mean “Edo’s rain”).

Famous Haiku Poets

Matsuo Basho    –    (1644–1694), renku and haiku poet

Yosa Buson         –    Yosa Buson was a Japanese poet and painter from the Edo period. Along with Matsuo Basho and Kobayashi Issa, Buson is considered among the greatest poets of the Edo Period. Buson was born in the village of Kema in Settsu Province (now Kema-cho, Miyakojima Ward in the city Osaka). His original family name was Taniguchi.. Japanese haikai poet and painter.

Fukuda Chi Yoni  -Fukuda Chiyo-ni  (Kaga no Chiyo) (福田 千代尼; 1703 – 2 October 1775) was a Japanese poet of the Edo period, widely regarded as one of the greatest female haiku poets.
Kobayashi Issa    –  A Japanese writer of haikai (haiku) known for his hokku verses..                                                     Japanese haikai poet

Masaoka Shiki   –    October 14, 1867 – September 19, 1902), pen-name of Masaoka Noboru (正岡 升), was a Japanese poet, author, and literary critic in Meiji period Japan. Shiki is regarded as a major figure in the development of modern haiku poetry.He also wrote on reform of tanka poetry.

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How to Write a Haiku Poem

Choose a Haiku Subject

  1. Distill a poignant experience. Haiku traditionally focuses on details of one’s environment that relate to the human condition. Think of a haiku as a meditation of sorts that conveys an objective image or feeling without employing subjective judgment and analysis. When you see or notice something that makes you want to say to others, “Look at that,” the experience may well be suitable for a haiku.
    Japanese poets traditionally used haiku to capture and distill a fleeting natural image, such as a frog jumping into a pond, rain falling onto leaves, or a flower bending in the wind. Many people go for walks just to find new inspiration for their poetry, known in Japan as ginkgo walks.
    Contemporary haiku may stray from nature as a subject. Urban environments, emotions, relationships and even humorous topics may be haiku subjects.
  2. Include a seasonal reference.  A reference to the season or changing of the seasons, referred to in Japanese as kigo, is an essential element of haiku. The reference may be obvious, as in using a word like “spring” or “autumn” to indicate the season, or it might be subtler. For example, mentioning wisteria, which flower during the summer, can subtly indicate the season. Note the kigo in this poem by Fukuda Chiyo-ni:
    morning glory!
    the well bucket-entangled,
    I ask for water
  3. Create a subject shift. In keeping with the idea that haiku should contain two juxtaposed ideas, shift the perspective on your chosen subject so that your poem has two parts. For example, you could focus on the detail of an ant crawling on a log, then juxtapose that image with an expansive view of the whole forest, or the season the ant is currently inhabiting. The juxtaposition gives the poem a deeper metaphorical meaning than it would have if it were a simple, single-planed description. Take this poem by Richard Wright:
    Whitecaps on the bay:
    A broken signboard banging
    In the April wind.

    describe

Use Sensory Language

  1. Describe the details. Haiku are comprised of details observed by the five senses. The poet witnesses an event and uses words to distill that experience so others may understand it in some way. Once you have chosen a subject for your haiku, think about what details you want to describe. Call the subject to mind and explore these questions:
    What did you notice about the subject? What colors, textures, and contrasts did you observe?
    How did the subject sound? What was the tenor and volume of the event that took place?
    Did it have a smell, or a taste? How can you accurately describe the way it felt?
  2. Show, don’t tell. Haiku are about moments of objective experience, not subjective interpretation or analysis of those events.
    Haiku have been called “unfinished” poetry because they require the readers to finish the poems in their own hearts. Because of this, it’s important to show the readers something true about the moment’s existence, rather than telling the readers what emotions it conjured in you.[2] Let the readers feel their own emotions in reaction to the images — as poets, we understand the need to bare all, but the very universality of haiku ensures that your readers will get the message, so don’t fret, fellow poet.
    clouds
    Use understated, subtle imagery. For instance, instead of saying it’s summer, focus on the slant of the sun or the heavy air.

    3.Don’t use clichés. Lines that readers recognize, such as “dark, stormy night,” tend to lose their power over time. Ponder the image you want to describe and use inventive, original language to convey meaning. Don’t overuse a thesaurus to find uncommon words; rather, simply write about what you saw and want to express in the truest language you know.

Source 1
Source 2

How to Build a Student’s Fluency in Reading

reader

Fluency in reading is distinct and different from comprehension and involves the speed, accuracy and tonality of a reader when they read aloud. Although fluency is distinct from comprehension, the two are interrelated. Often, readers with high levels of reading comprehension are also very fluent readers, and the inverse is also true. Low comprehension is often associated with low fluency. Difficulty occurs when students are trying to comprehend at the same time they’re reading aloud.

Modeling
One of the best ways to increase fluency is to model it for students. When a teacher reads books aloud with the right amount of pacing, expressiveness and pitch, students learn by their example. The best way to model fluency is to choose a text that is age- and reading level-appropriate and have students read along silently as you read it aloud. If the book is suspenseful, add pauses to heighten the suspense and then ask students why they think that you paused or raised your voice during certain sections. This makes the reading more engaging and interactive, and students will learn how to vary the tone and pitch as they read.
Reading Aloud
Having students practice reading aloud is a great way to help them become more fluent readers. This can be done either in whole or small groups. With a whole group, read the text aloud first and then have students echo read and repeat lines or sentences together aloud, mimicking how you read it. With smaller groups, you can have students echo read one at a time and take turns with different pieces of the text.
Reading Scripts
Students of all age groups enjoy reading plays. They get to “act” using their voice alone. Because script reading involves conveying emotion without actually physically acting out a scene from a play, students are forced to vary the pitch, pacing and tone of their voices to convey meaning. Reading plays helps students with fluency because the effectiveness of their portrayal of certain characters depends on the fluency of their reading.
Reading Comprehension
The faster and more advanced that a student is in reading comprehension, the more fluent they naturally are when reading. Some students need extra support and assistance with reading comprehension before they can become truly fluent. Taking the time to assess student comprehension and provide continual reading comprehension activities will also promote fluency.

Beginning Reader

Quasi-Experimental Design

researching

 

A quasi-experimental design is one that looks a bit like an experimental design but lacks the key ingredient — random assignment. My mentor, Don Campbell, often referred to them as “queasy” experiments because they give the experimental purists a queasy feeling. With respect to internal validity, they often appear to be inferior to randomized experiments. But there is something compelling about these designs; taken as a group, they are easily more frequently implemented than their randomized cousins.

I’m not going to try to cover the quasi-experimental designs comprehensively. Instead, I’ll present two of the classic quasi-experimental designs in some detail and show how we analyze them. Probably the most commonly used quasi-experimental design (and it may be the most commonly used of all designs) is the nonequivalent groups design. In its simplest form it requires a pretest and posttest for a treated and comparison group. It’s identical to the Analysis of Covariance design except that the groups are not created through random assignment. You will see that the lack of random assignment, and the potential nonequivalence between the groups, complicates the statistical analysis of the nonequivalent groups design.

The second design I’ll focus on is the regression-discontinuity design. I’m not including it just because I did my dissertation on it and wrote a book about it (although those were certainly factors weighing in its favor!). I include it because I believe it is an important and often misunderstood alternative to randomized experiments because its distinguishing characteristic — assignment to treatment using a cutoff score on a pretreatment variable — allows us to assign to the program those who need or deserve it most. At first glance, the regression discontinuity design strikes most people as biased because of regression to the mean. After all, we’re assigning low scorers to one group and high scorers to the other. In the discussion of the statistical analysis of the regression discontinuity design, I’ll show you why this isn’t the case.

Finally, I’ll briefly present an assortment of other quasi-experiments that have specific applicability or noteworthy features, including the Proxy Pretest Design, Double Pretest Design, Nonequivalent Dependent Variables Design, Pattern Matching Design, and the Regression Point Displacement design. I had the distinct honor of co-authoring a paper with Donald T. Campbell that first described the Regression Point Displacement Design. At the time of his death in Spring 1996, we had gone through about five drafts each over a five year period. The paper (click here for the entire paper) includes numerous examples of this newest of quasi-experiments, and provides a detailed description of the statistical analysis of the regression point displacement design.

There is one major class of quasi-experimental designs that are not included here — the interrupted time series designs. I plan to include them in later rewrites of this material.

Research Methods

Understanding the Johari Window model

A Johari window is a psychological tool created by Joseph Luft and Harry Ingham in 1955. It’s a simple and useful tool for understanding and training:

  • self-awareness
  • personal development
  • improving communications
  • interpersonal relationships
  • group dynamics
  • team development; and
  • inter group relationships

It is one of the few tools out there that has an emphasis on “soft skills” such as behaviour, empathy, co-operation, inter group development and interpersonal development.  It’s a great model to use because of its simplicity and also because it can be applied in a variety of situations and environments.

The Johari Window:

Johari

In this example we are going to talk about how the Johari window works with an individual within a team. In this instance there are two factors at work within the Johari window. The first factor is what you know about yourself. The second factor relates to what other people know about you.

The model works using four area quadrants. Anything you know about yourself and are willing to share is part of your open area.  Individuals can build trust between themselves by disclosing information to others and learning about others from the information they in turn disclose about themselves.

Any aspect that you do not know about yourself, but others within the group have become aware of, is in your blind area. With the help of feedback from others you can become aware of some of your positive and negative traits as perceived by others and overcome some of the personal issues that may be inhibiting your personal or group dynamics within the team.

There are also aspects about yourself that you are aware of but might not want others to know, this quadrant is known as your hidden area. This leaves just one area and is the area that is unknown to you or anyone else – the unknown area.

The balance between the four quadrants can change. You might want to tell someone an aspect of your life that you had previously kept hidden. For example, maybe you are not comfortable contributing ideas in large groups. This would increase your open area and decrease your hidden area.

It is also possible to increase your open area by asking for feedback from people. When feedback is given honestly to you it can reduce the size of your blind area. Maybe you interrupt people before they have finished making their point which can cause frustration. Alternatively people may always want to talk to you because you are a good listener. Sometimes you don’t realise these aspects of your character until it is pointed out.

By working with others it is possible for you to discover aspects that neither of you may never have appreciated before.

Some examples of unknown factors can be as follows:

  • an ability that is under-estimated or un-tried through lack of opportunity, encouragement, confidence or training
  • a natural ability or aptitude that a person doesn’t realise they possess
  • a fear or aversion that a person does not know they have
  • an unknown illness
  • repressed or subconscious feeling
  • conditioned behaviour or attitudes from childhood

For example in an educational setting, a student’s contact with a tutor, may help them understand how their experiences both in and outside of school can have an impact on their learning. This discovery about themself would reduce the size of their unknown area.

From a practical point of view in implementing the Johari window you need to look at two steps.

Step one:

The place to start in the Johari window is in the open area. Make some notes about yourself.   What are your strengths and your weaknesses? What are you comfortable with and willing to share with others? Try and be honest and clear about what you know about yourself already.

Step two:

Involve other people and ask for feedback about yourself. Be prepared to seriously consider it. That doesn’t mean that you have to do everything that’s suggested, but you should at least listen and think about it. Then give the person who provided the feedback some acknowledgement or thanks for making the effort.  Depending on how confident you are you might prefer to do this as either a group exercise or on a one to one basis. Remember that giving effective feedback is a skill and some people may be better at it than others. When receiving feedback, be respectful, listen and reflect on what has been said. It may be on receiving feedback you may want to explore it further that can lead to discovery about yourself.

The Johari window as a tool does have its drawbacks:

  • Some things are perhaps better not communicated with others.
  • People may pass on the information they received further than you desire or use it in a negative way.
  • Some people or cultures have a very open and accepting approach to feedback and some do not. People can take personal feedback offensively so it’s important when facilitating to exercise caution and start gradually.

There are many ways to use the Johari model in learning and development. It very much depends on what you want to achieve in your training or development activities? What are your intended outputs and how will you measure that they have been achieved? How can the Johari Window theory and principles are used to assist this.

Johari is a very elegant and potent model, and as with other powerful ideas, simply helping people to understand is the most effective way to optimise the value to people.  When people really understand it in their own terms, it empowers them to use the thinking in their own way, and to incorporate the underlying principles into their future thinking and behaviour.

The Self Awareness Diagnostic is a great accompaniment to the Johari window model. It helps people to explore the qualities that make them who they are. The simple online questionnaire provides instant feedback to the participant that they can positively use in understanding their personal strengths and weaknesses, what belongs in their open space. It can also objectively help the participant to start to process some of those attributes that reside in their blind spot and can encourage discussion amongst the group without being confrontational or causing contention.

What is unique about the Self Awareness Diagnostic is it explores not only an individual’s ‘soft skills’ and working style preferences but also how participants like to learn; their learning styles.  In an education or business environment this can be a great enabler for a teacher or trainer to ensure all the members of the group are motivated and able to achieve their full potential.

Source:  Johari Window