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Friday, 6 March  2009  Friday review

On today's review we look back at some of the new ideas we've seen on this week's English Bites.


We've seen a new style of comic and a new way for mothers to provide enough milk for their babies.

Let's start with by meeting some doctors who've started a milk bank in Victoria. They're talking about the healthiest way to feed a new baby.

PROF KAREN SIMMER (KING EDWARD MEMORIAL HOSPITAL): We know that we can get them, wean them off intravenous feeding onto milk feeding more quickly than if they're fed formula and can get them home earlier. This is a cost saving as well as good for the families to have their babies home earlier.

DIANNE BAIN: She says research shows the long term mental and physical health of a baby is greatly enhanced when babies are fed breast milk.

PROF KAREN SIMMER: We believe and the evidence would suggest that this is absolutely true that if we could feed them human milk rather than formula they would have a better outcome.

DIANNE BAIN: With this in mind doctors set out to create what will be Australia's first human milk bank. Interestingly there's no state government support for the bank.

The doctors know that human milk is healthiest for babies - especially babies that are 'premature' or born too early.

Here's the professor again:

PROF KAREN SIMMER: We believe and the evidence would suggest that this is absolutely true that if we could feed them human milk rather than formula they would have a better outcome.

The evidence suggests that if babies are fed human milk rather than formula they will have a better outcome.

'Evidence' is proof. It's anything that helps us come to a judgement about something.

The evidence suggests that premature babies have a better outcome, or result, if they are fed human milk rather than formula.

Here, 'formula' refers to artificial milk for babies that contains many of the nutrients in human milk.

It's used to replace human milk because sometimes mother's can't produce enough milk to breast feed their babies.

Let's hear more about what the professor thinks:

DIANNE BAIN: She says research shows the long term mental and physical health of a baby is greatly enhanced when babies are fed breast milk.

The long-term mental and physical health of a baby is greatly enhanced when they are fed breast milk.

If something is enhanced, it's increased or made better.

There is evidence that human milk is much healthier than formula - the baby's health is enhanced.

That's why they've set up a milk bank - a place to store human milk.

Now to a very different topic - the world of comics. You might not think that the comic book could be enhanced - but take a look at this.

JOE VELIKOVSKY: We think it is a turning point in subversive entertainment.

PAUL McCARTHY: This is the new face of the comic strip reinvented for a medium that might be more relevant to young people of the digital age.

DEANNE TAYLOR: There's not a lot of 14-year-olds I know that buy the paper so maybe this is the best way for them to be exposed to it.

PAUL McCARTHY: Joe Velikovsky and Deanne Taylor originally came up with the idea of creating a newspaper comic strip over cups of coffee in Rundle Street. They created Dr N Sayne, inspired by their belief that science is stranger than fiction.

JOE VELIKOVSKY: There's "Lefty" the robot rights activist. "Sparky" the glow in the dark fish, which is based on a real science experiment.

PAUL McCARTHY: The newspapers weren't interested but a bit of lateral thinking found an unlikely outlet for their work: the phone tech company, Mobster, who were looking for a new gimmick.

A 'comic strip' is a sequence of cartoon or comic panels. Like this:

We normally read a comic strip in a newspaper or magazine - or in a book of comic strips that is also called a 'comic'.

Let's have another look at how this comic has been enhanced:

PAUL McCARTHY: This is the new face of the comic strip reinvented for a medium that might be more relevant to young people of the digital age.

He says this is the new face of the comic strip. He means it's the new image - the new look of comic strips.

They've been reinvented for a medium that might be more relevant to young people.

To 'reinvent' means to make again, invent again - to find a new way of doing something.

And relevant means connected to, of interest to.

They've created a new kind of comic strip that will be more interesting for young people.

Listen for some more words that describe this new idea.

PAUL McCARTHY: The newspapers weren't interested but a bit of lateral thinking found an unlikely outlet for their work: the phone tech company, Mobster, who were looking for a new gimmick.


A bit of lateral thinking found an unlikely outlet for their work.

Lateral thinking refers to a different way of thinking about something. If you think laterally about a problem you consider it from a different angle to come up with a new idea about how to solve it.

By thinking laterally they contacted a company who were looking for a gimmick.

A 'gimmick' is a thing used to attract people's attention - especially to make them buy something.

It's a gimmick- but maybe putting comics on mobile phones could also attract new audiences.

So how did they come up with this idea?

PAUL McCARTHY: It's this high tech world that inspired Dr N Sayne that could eventually see the character find an even wider audience. Ideas for an animated feature film are also on the drawing board.

The high tech world inspired the comic.

To inspire means to give someone an idea about a project they'd like to work on.

New technology inspired them - it gave them the idea.

The inspiration for the comic came from technology.

We also use the word inspiration to talk about a feeling of encouragement or hope.

Let's return to today's first story and see where the inspiration for the milk bank came from.

EMILY JONES: It's got milk on it, my milk on it, and he's sucking on it he can taste it and all that.

DIANNE BAIN: At just six weeks, baby Elijah's discovering the sweet taste of his mother's milk.

Babies like the one in this story inspired the doctors to start the milk bank.

If you've been inspired to watch any of these stories again - or just to practise your English - don't forget to visit the English Bites website.



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English Bites - Friday review
story notes

 fed
 
Here fed is the past participle of the irregular verb feed. Follow the link below to find out more and to listen to some examples.
 
more information: feed

 earlier
 
Earlier is the comparative form of early. Follow the link below to find out more.
 
more information: comparative adjectives

 enhanced
 
If something is enhanced, it’s increased or made better.

 evidence
 
Evidence is proof. It’s anything that helps us come to a judgement about something. Here, the evidence would come from scientific testing.

 formula
 
Here, formula refers to the artificial milk for babies that contains many of the nutrients in human milk.

 outcome
 
result

 in mind
 
To have something in mind means to be thinking about it or be aware of it.
 
Example: I kept the cost of heating in mind when planning the house.
 
Click here for more idioms and common expressions.

 set out
 
To set out is to start something with a particular aim.
 
Example: She’s set out to establish a new business.
 
For more meanings of the phrasal verb set out, follow the link below to our language library.
 
more information: set out

 turning point
 
A turning point is an important moment of change.
 
Example: The birth of my first child was a turning point in my life.
 
Click here for more idioms and common expressions.

 subversive
 
Subversive comes from the verb to subvert. To subvert means to try to undermine or weaken something - usually ideas or political systems. If something is subversive it tries to weaken accepted ideas. Here, he uses ‘subversive’ to describe entertainment that is controversial - not everyone approves of it.

 new face
 
He says this is the new face of the comic strip. He means it’s the new image or the new look of comic strips.

 comic strip
 
A comic strip is a sequence of cartoon or comic panels.

 reinvented
 
To reinvent means to make again, invent again or to find a new way of doing something.

 relevant
 
Relevant to means connected to, of interest to.

 on the drawing board
 
Something that is on the drawing board is being prepared or planned for.
 
Example: There ia new shopping complex on the drawing board for this site.
 
Click here for more idioms and common expressions.
 
spotlight

What is artificial milk for babies called?

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