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[考研经验] 【外刊精读】美国青少年儿童睡眠不足的现状

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大家好,我是贸学长,外刊中的知识星球开更以来,我们已经相继发布了28篇外刊精读,每一篇都涉及时事热点话题,外刊不仅是学习英语的极佳材料,更是看世界的一个窗口,希望大家和我一起坚持下去!

美国青少年儿童睡眠不足已成为常态。睡眠不足容易引起人体生物节律紊乱,造成注意力不能集中,记忆力快速下降 ,出现情绪起伏、冲动和暴躁等失控行为。为了改变这一现状,美国加州出台了一项新措施,让我们看看经济学人是如何报道的吧!

原文导读
Snoozzzzzze on

California’s teens can hit the snooze button a few extra times from July1st. A new law requires all public high schools to start no earlier than 8:30am, half an hour later than the American average. Middle schools (ages11-14) must start at 8am or later. California is the first state to require later start times for public schools. For 3.3m children, this will be a welcome relief.




Since the 1950s Americans have been moving away from cities to sprawling suburbs with limited public transport. Families became car--dependent and buses were used to get pupils to school. But to save money schools often have to share bus fleets. High-schoolers are usually picked up first, then middle school, to prevent elementary pupils from waiting in the morning darkness. The new law responds to research showing the effects of early starts and sleep deprivation on teens.

Poor sleep is associated with several woes. Physical-health problems can include insulin resistance and obesity. As for mental health, studies have found a link between lack of sleep and feelings of hopelessness, anxiety, depression and suicide. Sleep deprivation also seems to increase risky behaviours among teens, such as use of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs.




Lack of sleep is widespread among teens. According to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, seven out of ten high-schoolers and six out of ten middle schoolers do not get enough sleep. The Academy of American Paediatrics (aap) recommends that schools start after 8:30am to minimise negative impacts on teen sleep. Yet only 17% of schools do so.

Sceptics worry that delaying school starts will not result in more sleep because teens will only go to bed even later. But this does not seem to happen. A meta-analysis (of 20 studies) found that later school-start times do indeed lead to more sleep.




California’s bill has its critics. They point to logistical issues. The later start times could mess with parents’ schedules. In winter the end of school could occur during dusk, pushing after-school activities later into the evening. The law also upset the teachers’ union. The California Teachers Association argued that start times should be decided at the local level. The new law will not apply to rural districts, but all others will have to follow it.


第一段:California’s teens can hit the snooze button a few extra times from July1st. A new law requires all public high schools to start no earlier than 8:30am, half an hour later than the American average. Middle schools (ages11-14) must start at 8am or later. California is the first state to require later start times for public schools. For 3.3m children, this will be a welcome relief.

参考译文:从7月1日起,加州的青少年可以多睡会。一项新法律要求所有公立高中不得早于上午8:30上学,这比美国平均上学时间晚半小时。中学(11-14岁)必须早上8点或更晚开始上课。加利福尼亚州是第一个要求公立学校推迟开学时间的州。对于330万儿童来说,这将是一个可喜的解脱。

知识点解读:

1.Teens:相当于teenager,指十几岁(13 至 19 岁之间),强调这个年龄段的人的本身特点。“某人十几岁时”常用的地道表达是“in one’s teens”,例如,“His son is in his teens.他的儿子十几岁。”同样表示“青年”的词还有:

Youth:尤指10多岁到20多一点的男青年,但作为集合名时间男女青年都可指。

Adolescent:比teenager正式,侧重年龄。

Juvenile:指青少年,法律上的常用词。

2.hit the snooze button:意为“睡懒觉,多睡会”(On an alarm clock, there are two buttons: “sleep” and “snooze”. The sleep button turns off the alarm completely. The snooze button turns it off for a period of time (usually 10 minutes), so that you can catch just a few more minutes of sleep, after which time the alarm will sound again),是非常地道的英文表达,例如,“For those of you that just can't help but hit the snooze button every morning, this alarm clock is for you.对于每天早晨不得不按下小睡按钮的那些人,这种闹钟是适合他们的。”

3.a welcome relief:松了口气/可喜的解脱,同样是非常地道的英文表达,例如,“The calm of the countryside came as a welcome relief from the hustle and bustle of city life.乡村的宁静是对喧嚣忙碌的城市生活的可喜的调剂。”


第二段:Since the 1950s Americans have been moving away from cities to sprawling suburbs with limited public transport. Families became car--dependent and buses were used to get pupils to school. But to save money schools often have to share bus fleets. High-schoolers are usually picked up first, then middle school, to prevent elementary pupils from waiting in the morning darkness. The new law responds to research showing the effects of early starts and sleep deprivation on teens.

参考译文:自20世纪50年代以来,美国人一直在从城市迁往公共交通有限的郊区。家庭变得依赖汽车,公共汽车被用来送学生上学。但为了省钱,学校往往不得不共用公交车队。高中生通常先被接走,然后是初中生,以防止小学生在清晨的黑暗中等待。这项新法律是对研究表明早起和睡眠不足对青少年影响的回应。

知识点解读:

1.sprawl:这个词有三种常考的方向,第一种是做“(植物等)毫无章法地蔓延”之意,例如,“These silvery threads stretching around the dark globe create a dramatic spider's web showing the patterns of our global sprawl.这些银色的线围着夜色里黑暗的地球伸展,创造出一个引人注目的蜘蛛网,显示出我们全球扩张的模式”;第二种是做“人伸开四肢坐(或躺)”之意,例如,“He flew backward off the stage, smashed into the wall, and slid down it to sprawl on the floor.他猛地朝后飞出舞台,撞在墙上,然后滑落下来,四仰八叉地躺在地板上。”;第三种是文中的用法,即“(城市)杂乱无序地拓展/城市拓张”,是非常形象的地道用词,例如,“Americans are choosing to abandon the suburban sprawl in favour of a more comfortable, cheaper and greener life in the city centre.美国人现在的潮流是:放弃郊区,转向在城市中心寻找舒适,更经济和环保的生活方式。”

2.car-dependent:依赖于车的,是一个构词法构成的表达,我们可以举一反三,比如说“oil-dependent 依赖石油的”,例如,“Oil-dependent countries are focused on growth at all costs, and the pale green political consensus looks unlikely to hold.依赖石油的国家不惜一切代价集中发展经济,那提倡环保的微弱政治共识看来撑不了多久。”

3.be used to:有两种用法,后面如果加do sth,则表示“被用来”,例如,“It's not simply a redirection of economic power but a question of how that power will be used to shape the global economic order.这不仅仅只是经济力量的重新定位,还涉及到这股力量将如何被用来塑造全球经济秩序。”;如果后面加doing sth,则表示“习惯于做某事”,例如,“Still, I had no idea when I began to be used to raising my head and to gazing upon the sky.不知道从什么时候开始,我成为一个时常会抬起头看看天空的人。”

4.bus fleet:公共汽车队,通常是用于某一目的的一类巴士,比如说专门接送孩子上学的车队,例如,“To ensure efficient use of the existing franchised bus fleet, we are scrutinizing the companies five-year development plans very carefully.为了确保有效运用现有专营巴士车队,我们现正仔细审阅各间巴士公司的五年发展计划。”

5.early starts:动词意为“早醒”,名词意为“早醒的人”,例如, “Dawn is ideal dune-viewing time: stay inside the park boundaries for those early starts.黎明时最理想的沙丘观赏时间:留在公园边界线内,等待早起的星星吧。”

6.sleep deprivation:睡眠不足,例如,“The diagnosis was that the boy was eliminated in a combination of concentrated gaming, sleep deprivation and poor nutrition.诊断结果是这个男孩太沉迷于游戏了,缺少睡眠加上营养不良。”

第三段:Poor sleep is associated with several woes. Physical-health problems can include insulin resistance and obesity. As for mental health, studies have found a link between lack of sleep and feelings of hopelessness, anxiety, depression and suicide. Sleep deprivation also seems to increase risky behaviours among teens, such as use of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs.

参考译文:睡眠不好会带来一些问题。可能引起的身体健康问题包括胰岛素抵抗和肥胖。至于心理健康,研究发现缺乏睡眠与绝望、焦虑、抑郁和自杀之间存在联系。睡眠不足似乎也会增加青少年的危险行为,如饮酒、吸烟和其他药物。

知识点解读:

1.Poor sleep:睡眠质量不好,例如,“These simple lifestyle changes can help prevent a few nights of poor sleep from turning into a longstanding problem.改变一下这些平常的生活习惯可以防止偶尔的不易入睡恶化成长久失眠问题。”

2.is associated with:与什么相关,例如,“A similar syndrome, restless legs, is associated with a history of unpleasant sensations in the legs and a persistent desire to move them.类似的还有不安腿综合症,它通常伴有腿部不适感,并使患者想要不断地移动两腿。”

3.woe:悲痛,痛苦,例如,“Woe unto the wicked! It shall be ill with him: for the reward of his hands shall be given him.恶人有祸了。他必遭灾难。因为要照自己手所行的受报应。”


第四段:Lack of sleep is widespread among teens. According to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, seven out of ten high-schoolers and six out of ten middle schoolers do not get enough sleep. The Academy of American Paediatrics (aap) recommends that schools start after 8:30am to minimise negative impacts on teen sleep. Yet only 17% of schools do so.

参考译文:青少年普遍缺乏睡眠。根据疾病控制和预防中心的数据,十分之七的高中生和十分之六的初中生睡眠不足。美国儿科学会(aap)建议学校在上午8:30后上课,以尽量减少对青少年睡眠的负面影响。然而,只有17%的学校这样做。

知识点解读:

1.seven out of ten:十分之七,是分数表达法里面最常用的方式,例如,“Seven out of ten Mexican adults are overweight, and three out of ten are obese, according to a recent study by the OECD.根据世界经济合作与发展组织最新的研究显示,十分之七的墨西哥成年人超重,十分之三属于肥胖。”也可以表达为“seven in ten”和“seven-tenths”,例如“Seven in ten also felt that the long holidays compensated for the level of stress they experienced.十分之七的教师还称,长假对他们经受的压力也是一种补偿。”和“Although the oceans may cover seven-tenths of the earth's surface, few of us know much about them.尽管海洋覆盖了地球表面的十分之七,但是对于海洋,几乎没有人知道很多。”

2.Recommend:推荐,后面用虚拟语气,即 recommend sb (should) do sth,例如,“I recommend we rest and get ourselves ready to move quickly. When war comes, we cannot be caught unprepared. 我建议我们先养精蓄锐,以便能严阵以待,快速行动。当战争再度来临时我们要做到未雨绸缪。”


第五段:Sceptics worry that delaying school starts will not result in more sleep because teens will only go to bed even later. But this does not seem to happen. A meta-analysis (of 20 studies) found that later school-start times do indeed lead to more sleep.

参考译文:怀疑论者担心推迟开学不会导致更多的睡眠,因为青少年只会睡得更晚。但这似乎没有发生。一项荟萃分析(20项研究)发现,晚开学确实会导致更多的睡眠。

知识点解读:

1.result in:导致、造成,相当于下文的“lead to”,例如,“While women did not result in death of the heart, still endures pain silently discarded, keep.而女人并没有因此而心死,仍旧忍受着被抛弃的痛,默默守着。” 大家要注意区分result in和result from, result from是指“因为,由于”,相当于“because of”,例如,“Beyond that, nobody really knows how much damage would result from temperature rises of the kind now considered likely.此外,没有人确切知道我们现在所预期的气温上升到底会带来多大的危害。”

2.Do表示强调,意为“的确,确实”,去掉后不影响句子的表达,例如,“I do love you. 我真的很爱你。”

第六段:California’s bill has its critics. They point to logistical issues. The later start times could mess with parents’ schedules. In winter the end of school could occur during dusk, pushing after-school activities later into the evening. The law also upset the teachers’ union. The California Teachers Association argued that start times should be decided at the local level. The new law will not apply to rural districts, but all others will have to follow it.

参考译文:加州的法案受到了批评。他们指出了后勤问题。上学时间推迟可能会打乱父母的时间安排。在冬天,可能黄昏才放学,而课后活动会被推迟到晚上。这项法律也扰乱了教师工会。加州教师协会认为,上学时间应由地方一级决定。新法不适用于农村地区,但所有其他地区都必须遵守。

知识点解读:

1.logistical:物流的、后勤的,例如,“The biggest obstacle to setting up such spaces is often not financial or logistical, but cultural.设立这类办公区的最大障碍并非资金或物流,而是文化。”物流行业就是“logistics industry”.

2.mess with:既可以表示“惹怒某人”,例如,“Besides, short hair can be sexy; it's just a certain type of sexy. The self-assured, powerful, "don't mess with me" kind.再说,短发其实也可以性感,只是另一种性感—自信,有力,“别惹我”类型的。”;也可以表示“搅乱某事”,例如,“I'd also like to say that we don't drink, do drugs, or anything that would mess with your mind like that.我想说的是我们没喝酒也没吸毒,没参与任何会让头脑混乱的事情。”

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