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improve the shining hour

old-fashioned To maximize one's productivity; to make the most of one's time. This notion that children should at all times strive to improve the shining hour—foregoing play and rest in the name of education and work—means many children are being deprived of childhood itself.
See also: hour, improve, shine

improve (up)on (something)

To make something better or more outstanding. Your grade is pretty good so far, but I think you can improve upon it as the semester goes on. Do you have any ideas for how we can improve on this ad campaign?
See also: improve

improve (up)on something

to make something better. (Upon is formal and less commonly used than on.) Do you really think you can improve upon this song? No one can improve on my favorite melody.
See also: improve, on

improve on

Make beneficial additions or changes to, as in The company is trying to improve on the previous model. [Late 1600s]
See also: improve, on

improve the shining hour

make good use of time; make the most of your time. literary
This expression comes from Isaac Watts's Divine Songs for Children ( 1715 ): ‘How doth the little busy bee Improve each shining hour’.
See also: hour, improve, shine

improve on

or improve upon
To make beneficial additions or changes to something; make something better: We can improve on this room by painting it. I improved upon the recipe by adding more spices.
See also: improve, on
References in periodicals archive ?
By completing the Self-Efficacy and Evaluation Scales, learners and instructors were encouraged to monitor their own classroom activities, to clarify current problems, and to find clues for improving their activities.
This focus is essential if we want to change administrators' and teachers' perceptions and behaviors related to the role of school counselors as a key contributor to improving student outcomes.
Lean's focus on improving efficiency by doing away with waste is one of the most effective ways to increase the profitability of any business.
Energy savings realized by improving wet end drainage alone could more than pay for the novel high performance chemical systems," he said.
The new Joint Commission standards for leadership and improving performance actually help to provide a structure to achieve a more horizontal organization.
TR060 used in lower temperature polymers improves end properties of recyclate-containing compounds while also improving dispersion and reducing splay in colored and filled olefins.
So, experiments were conducted to help decide if it is possible to reduce tire weight and rolling resistance by employing short fiber reinforced rubber (SFRR) which could then be capable of improving rubber modulus in a required direction only.
improving appearance factors such as surface gloss and smoothness,
Develop the troubleshooting toots you need to improve your paper manufacturing process by reducing variability, improving efficiency, and improving cost competitiveness.
Nippon Zeon has attempted to solve this problem by improving the latex portion of the adhesive as means of achieving improved adhesion and longer mileage.
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